Feng shui is exhausting.

Friday afternoon. I’m kicking back in my recliner, feet up, sipping a hard seltzer. I was going to take advantage of the first warm day of the year–it’s 67º, guys!–by hanging out on the deck. I spent 15 minutes searching for folding camp chairs and a little side table, lugged them upstairs to the deck, got everything set up…

…and the moment I did, it started to rain.

I thought it might let up after a few minutes, but no such luck. In fact, the sky is looking increasingly ominous. Oh, and this is happening right now.

Hey, wait a minute. I didn’t sign up for this when I moved to Wisconsin! Keep that shit down there, northwest Illinois!

I’m not too concerned about tornadoes. We’re not in Tornado Alley or the deep South, at least. I know they can, and do, happen here. But they also can, and do, happen in South Dakota. In the four years we lived there, I think we had Tornado Watches twice. Thankfully, nothing happened either time.

Fingers crossed for the same this evening. I think we’re in for some strong thunderstorms, judging by the radar, but those we are used to. In fact, we had a few thunderstorms overnight. ‘Tis the season.

Here’s the craziest part of all: it’s supposed to snow tomorrow morning. If you want some crazy weather, kids, move to the Midwest.

On a happier note, we finally solved our most challenging house project: the entryway. When you open the front door to Casa MarTar, you are immediately greeted by stairs–one flight going up, the other going down. Which is just about the biggest feng shui sin you can commit. This spells financial misfortune because, as the Chinese like to say, Chi moves like water, flowing from the upper floors to the lower floors thanks to pesky ol’ gravity. A common feng shui principle states, All of your money will roll down the stairs and out the front door. 

But apparently you can offset this by hanging a crystal or wind chime from the ceiling halfway between the base of the stairs and the front door. This will diffuse and spread the Chi as it comes down the stairs, preventing it from rushing out the front door.

Whew. Feng shui is exhausting. The last thing in the world I want to do is chase my Chi down the block as it bolts for freedom.

Anyhoo. That entryway was covered in ugly 45 y/o wallpaper. Look, I love the ’70s even more than most people, but I do have to draw the line somewhere. Striped wallpaper is apparently it. And because the ceiling is so tall, removing it would have been a real pain in the ass. Especially over stairs. Not gonna lie: I have a small fear of heights.

While we have painted most of the rooms ourselves, we figured this was one project we’d prefer to hire a professional to do. So, I reached out to a local painting company that had stellar Google reviews. They came out, gave us a quote, and said they could get started right away.


The painters arrived bright and early Thursday morning and immediately got to work. Luckily, the wallpaper peeled right off. They said it was actually the easiest wallpaper removal they had ever done. The main issue was the glue on the underlying walls. It was thick and resistant to sanding. They ended up doing a skim coat, added texture, and then painted. Twenty-nine hours later, we had a transformed entryway.

We just have to figure out where to hang our crystal or wind chime and we’ll be all set. Take that, bad feng shui!

58 thoughts on “Feng shui is exhausting.

  1. I find this weather service note a bit ludicrous: “a few tornadoes likely with a couple intense tornadoes possible…” They could simply have stopped at TORNADO and the message would be really clear- jeez! Good call on the pros- no need to risk massive injuries.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We’ll, you already had a bit of good luck by not getting hot with a tornado and finding someone to do the nightmare wall job for you. So I’d say, so far so good )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The problem is, halfway between the base of the stairs and the front door means we’d need a very tall ladder to hang the crystal. The whole point of outsourcing that work was to avoid needing a very tall ladder.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Crazy weather everywhere Mark, one day it’s in the 50’s in the morning with a high of 68, the next morning I am scraping ice off my windshields. Makes you wonder how anyone still doesn’t believe in climate change ? Nice to see you got quick turnaround on the wallpaper dilemma.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, that looked like a lot of work. I’m amazed you were able to get a crew out there so quickly. It’s taking months for contractors to schedule here. But they did nice work. Goodbye stripes! Hope you find the perfect crystal, money flies out of a house quickly enough… it doesn’t need help.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. On one of those home design shows they actually moved the entrance…but I have heard of people who choose to not enter or exit particular doors

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Huge improvement – well done.
    I woke up this morning to what appears to be 8 or 10 inches of snow where there had been dry sidewalks and expanding patches of grass. On a Saturday.
    So no snow day.
    Needless to say, I’m fuming.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Holy buckets, really? It’s currently snowing here – giant flakes the size of half-dollars – but 34º so nothing is sticking. And this snow band is moving through quickly; should be perfectly sunny in a few hours.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Good job outsourcing the heights. And I this year I completely empathize on having all your prep work rained out. I’ve checked the doppler and gotten the dog ready for a walk so many times in the last month only to have it start pouring right before or in the middle of a walk.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I literally got my chair all set up, grabbed my laptop and a cold beverage, sat down…and it immediately started raining. And now, it’s only going to be in the low 40s today. I missed my golden opportunity!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. That wallpaper wasn’t even that bad, compared to a lot of ugly stuff out there (what were people thinking with that country floral crap in the 80’s?) but the entry looks like a new house now! Bravo for getting workers to come out so fast! That’s half the battle. The other half is getting them to even return a call.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Interestingly, I reached out to them by providing all my information on the contact form on their website…and didn’t hear back for eight days. By then, I’d written them off, but once the owner called, everything happened quickly. You’re right, there are definitely worse styles of wallpaper out there. Let’s not even discuss the kitchen…


    2. “Country floral crap” is the perfect description for the wallpaper in our bedrooms. (Our house was built in 1979.) However, I’m pretty sure our wallpaper isn’t going to come off as easily; I’ll probably be painting over it.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Great that you had good results with those painters coming on time and doing what they said they’d do!
    Such a bummer about the rain hitting when it did. :/
    Anyone else asking where your April Fool’s Day post is, or do we all know you too well to buy it, whatever it is you’d try to sell?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I was into Feng Shui back in the day and remember the principle you mention. I thought the worst one from a financial point of view was to have your front door and your back door in a straight line meaning that good luck swept through your house & never stayed. It seems to me that with your updates you’ve trapped your chi inside your house, but then in my experience my life didn’t change one iota by applying Feng Shui principles. So what do I know?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Holy crap on the Tornado stealing your deck day! I actually had a dream about a tornado last night, but that’s not unusual for me. Seeing one in real life would be crazy.

    I love that you smartened up and hired someone to take care of the entryway walls/wall paper situation. What a difference and you didn’t take any chances on your life or limbs. It looks great; fresh!! Now for the Chrystals. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Blimey, and they told us the Scottish Highlands can have all four seasons in one day… on the other hand, a tornado might make for some dramatic pictures. Entry way looks good

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Our arrangement is similar. The stairs leading to the master bedroom are directly over the stairs to the basement. However, they’re slightly offset so they aren’t directly in front of the door so maybe our Chi is safe.🤷‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

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