Monday 25 October 2010

At Last! The Gospel Light Is Shining!

Our dining room has been looking decidedly shabby. It has never been redecorated since the house was built, 20 years ago – and much moving of furniture, a disaster with a red Christmas candle one year, and life in general has left its mark.  So we decided that we ought to do something about it [we actually thought that around 2008, but then we got Cornerstones, and all our energies went into that property for a while]


But this autumn we have been hosting the Alpha Group, and each week’s session begins with dinner. The food is absolutely brilliant [the girls bring that along every Tuesday, and we have some fabulous meals] and I get out all my best wedding present crockery and cutlery and set the table with napkins carefully folded etc. But I have been very conscious of the sad state of the walls…

Now I know my friends probably haven’t even noticed – what with the delicious grub and sparkling conversation…but all the same, I did feel we should do something.

cornmeal room

Then I read on Frances’ blog about her new cornmeal dining room.

That is the sort of colour I want! I declared, showing Bob her splendid pictures. So we concluded that if we were returning from our half-term trip early [for my SIL’s 60th birthday party] we could use the two remaining days before we went back to work to paint the room.

I collected all sorts of paint colour charts and studied them…

Which was all well and good, but a combination of factors [car tax and MOT, and the payroll department omitting to process my pay claim this month, and other bills…] meant there was no spare dosh for trips to B&Q to purchase paint! [and, of course, WHAM]

However we did buy a huge pot of “Magnolia” last year for Cornerstones very cheaply in Homebase – and in 1996, Liz chose to have her bedroom [now Bob’s studio-cum-oratory] repainted in a deep yellow called Dulux “Honeybee”. The leftover paint was in the garage.

So there we were, somewhere between Harry Potter mixing a spell, and Mary Berry mixing icing for her cupcakes, combining the two colours…


and a close up…


We ended up with enough paint for the room, without spending any more money!

All the wall stuff was removed [bookshelves, pictures, antique clock etc] and holes filled with Polyfilla, and as much furniture as possible was temporarily redistributed to other rooms.DSCF0003

And we set to work



It is a little darker than the paint Frances used - but exactly the right shade for my room. When I took down the curtains, I realised the label said ‘dry clean only’ – but the cost of dry cleaning being what it is, and the curtains being twenty years old – I slung them in the washing machine. They came up beautifully – but five inches shorter! Fortunately they had deep hems, which I have let down.

Bob has decreed that I am not to put ‘all that stuff’ back – the sideboard was full of crockery, plus there were boxes of stuff under it and some glass cake stands on top…

DSCF0004 I have got some re-organising to do there. We have yet to decide what is going back onto the walls – certainly not the overloaded bookshelves, but definitely my great grandmother’s clock.

But one thing has at last seen the light of day – after twenty years, my £10 IKEA bargain ‘Gospel’ chandelier has finally left its box in the garage and found a home [I tried last year at Cornerstones, but it wouldn’t fit there] Bob has modified it, and we have agreed that it looks good over the dining table. So here is our finished room…


So thanks, Frances for the inspiration for the colour – and thanks Bob for all the hard work you did [especially the high bits, in places I cannot reach]

Now I shall go and think about how to store the china efficiently.

Please do drop round for a meal if you are in the area!!


  1. That looks extremely chic, Ang.

  2. I love the colour is nice and warm but also really jolly

  3. Looks lovely, well done you. Wishing you many, many happy meals and great conversations in your new dining room.

  4. The room now looks warm, rich, and inviting.
    Must do something about our walls...they are so shabby!

  5. I love the colour, in fact, I'm afraid of colour as I never know what to use, I like that one though

  6. Is the Alpha Group an Alpha course? If so I'd be interested to know how successful you have found the Alpha course to be in drawing people in to Christ or at changing lives? I ask this because our Pastor isn't convinced that they help people find God...though I don't know exactly why he has this viewpoint.

  7. Glad to know the redecoration meets with approval [nobody has ever referred to anything of mine as 'chic' before. I am quite thrilled]
    LSITH - it IS the Alpha course- we use Nicky Gumbel's book, but Bob and I 'deliver' the material in it ourselves rather than using the DVDs. Its the first group we have run for ages - I will make proper comments when we get to the end [only had 5 sessions so far]

  8. the room looks lovely Angela. Where do you get your energy from? You packed so much into the half term break.

  9. Thanks Angela. I'll keep an eye out for your review of the course.


  10. The Alpha Course is just a tool. It's sucess depends on the quality of the facilitators. The first one I went to had mainly male leaders who were heavily into telling you what you should believe, how you should behave, how you should be healed and how you should experience the Holy Spirit. I gave up after about 4 sessions of what I can only describe as spiritual bullying. Several years later I tried it again in a different Church and found it a lot better run and more useful. I was already a Christian but it certainly helped several fringe people to take their Christian commitment more seriously.

  11. Wow! I love the color. It's a little deeper than Cornmeal, but is really warm and inviting.

    How fun to see a picture of my dining room on your blog! It's like it went on a little vacation to the UK. Neat!


  12. Frances - glad you like it
    Annie - thanks for your comment - the course runs so differently in each church, as you say!


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