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I only ask to be polite

Editor’s note: This column originally published Sept. 24, 2015

I’ve been having several “So... I’ve been thinking” moments lately. Mick is on high alert.

Two things about me you probably don’t know — we’re entering my favorite season and I’m a nester. Throw a couple of ‘Autumn Wreath’ scented candles in there and I never want to leave my home.

My house is now clearly ready for fall. I was finally able to bring out the fun and fanciful decorations that have waited patiently in storage in my basement since the day after Thanksgiving last year. Over the weekend I even washed windows, and believe me, when a person lives in a home in the country with three dogs, two cats and 8-inch window sills, Windex is always at the ready.

Generally, when I start a project it tends to lead in to another and most often another.

We went to Des Moines Saturday to browse around an event at the Varied Industries building at the fairgrounds. We worked our way out to Clive to have lunch. Since we were there, I suggested stopping by a particular home décor store I’d not visited yet. After all, a person can never have too many seasonal decorations.

The only thing is, I didn’t buy any seasonal items. No, it’s even better than that. I’ve now decided I’m going to redecorate my living room.

Three hours later, we loaded my purchases in the car and headed home.

A moment of senility slipped in during that drive from Des Moines to Prairie City, the exact same drive we’ve made hundreds of times. Mick interrupted my train of thought as I was squishing little monsters on a game I was playing on my phone with, “Hmmm. They’ve changed this exit.”

I looked up expecting to see the familiar used car lots and over-sized cow and calf, but instead all I saw was an aged and tired residential area.

Where in the world had he taken us!

It didn’t take long to make our way back to familiar surroundings and we had a good laugh, but even as of today, he still hasn’t admitted to taking what was obviously the wrong exit for some unknown reason. He’s certain the State of Iowa has completely changed the off ramp from Interstate 235 to University Avenue, which now diverts traffic through a quiet neighborhood.

So anyway…

Once we arrived home, I immediately began replacing my old wall hangings with my newly acquired pieces. As I stood back to admire my excellent taste, it occurred to me I hadn’t changed much in the living room for 14 years.

Yes, the wheels in my head have started turning. Wallpaper will be coming down. Painting will be involved. There will probably be new lamps and possibly new furniture. And I saw the cutest idea on Pinterest…

Fortunately for my resident ‘go-to’ guy, most of my plans won’t require the need for much labor from him.

Besides, when it comes to interior decorating, we kind of have a system in place at our house. He and I both know when I ask his opinion about my ideas for design, it’s merely a polite gesture on my part — anything he says goes in one ear and out the other. If my husband had his way, my walls would be covered with John Wayne prints and deer antlers and my coffee and end tables would be used NASCAR tires with a glass top.

My tastes are different when it comes to a comfortable and relaxing homey atmosphere. And by different, I mean better.

Contact Dana King at

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