Moryse Heron's Profile

Display Name: Moryse Heron
Member Since: 9/12/07

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I know how overwhelming it can feel -- the trick is to try to keep moving forward without worrying that you're missing something or not doing it "right".

Two years ago I did a sort of hybrid cure -- whole house and one room. Mostly because the whole house was in pretty good shape but my office needed a lot of work. I can't say that in Fall 2007 that one type of cure dominated, nor does it seem to me that it's more focused on one room.

To answer krissi: check out page 50. It gives the program overview. Week one focuses on the whole apartment; cleaning and listing repairs. You'll notice that cleaning takes place on weeks 1-7, so don't feel that you have to clean the whole place in one week!

Then page 54 has the details for Week One: make a complete list of repairs, vacuum and mop floors, remove one item, buy fresh flowers, sit in a part of your home that you never sit it.

Keep in mind that the list of repairs is just a starting place. At least, that's how I used it. I didn't complete all the repairs, but I made a thorough list and figured out which ones I should/could do first.

It can be helpful to take some photographs of your space. I find it easier to analyze things when I'm looking at a photo (I can distance myself from the negative feelings). Also, one of the best things about doing the cure as a group is that you can get wonderful feedback. If you can't figure out how to solve a problem, post a picture and ask! It really helped me to get unstuck.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Fall Cure 2009: Discussion Board North
10/16/09 04:21 PM

I don't shear my bushes because it's not my gardening style, but I used the string method to shape the honeysuckle hedge along the alley. This sounds like a good method if you want to be precise in a larger area and don't have a lot of skill with the powered hedge clippers.

Keep in mind that if you want a healthy hedge, you should only shear plants that respond well to shearing. And the base of the hedge should be wider than the top so it doesn't become a skeleton at the bottom.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | How To: Easily Trim Hedges Yourself
7/16/08 07:12 AM

While it seems like such a neat idea, I've never tried it because it's too hard for me to keep lots of seedlings watered. Over-watering and under-watering killed too many of my efforts until I purchased a reusable system with a water reservoir. But I start about 50 plants each year and have to keep the system in the basement (where I don't see it regularly and thus don't catch problems quickly). So my needs are pretty specific.

Even if that weren't the case, for anyone who has origami skills, the price is way too high.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Hot or Not? The Paper Potter
7/16/08 07:08 AM

I save my paper for recycling with the local public library (they earn money from it), so I have paper collection bins in two rooms. They're smallish wire mesh, forcing me to empty them regularly. I don't like to live with my trash. Then I collect it in my garage until I have a trunk-ful to drop off.

All other recycling is cleaned and collected in the second bin of a roll-out trash can system under my kitchen sink. I like the model I have because it has a lid to control the garbage smell; it took me years of searching to find it. This is a small bin that is emptied every week into the larger city container. Unfortunately, this city container isn't wheeled, so I have to lug it down to the curb. It's heavy when it's full of glass!

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Survey: Recycling Storage
7/12/08 12:23 PM

Wow, it looks great!

I've heard a rumor that there's a pile of bricks free for the taking in my city, but I've been reluctant to try this because of the work involved. You've inspired me to reconsider it.

But I'm an old hand at re-using plant materials. I have expanded the garden beds to the front and sides of my house using plants from the back yard. Now, if only furniture and carpeting would increase over time like plants do....

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Flickr Finds: Thefarmersdaughter's Recycled Garden Path
7/12/08 12:14 PM

It's an interesting concept, but reading the full instructions shows that -- like all composting -- it is fairly complicated. Composting has to be managed, especially when you're doing it on such a small scale.

Composting slows down in the cold in this unit; I'd bet that if you keep it outside, it totally stops in our frigid winters. If it doesn't, then they're using a lot of energy to keep it warm. Big composting piles retain heat in colder weather, but this one doesn't have enough thermal mass for that.

According to a hard-core greenie friend who, until recently, worked in solid waste in Illinois, food is not the biggest problem in landfills. Many landfills want food because they capture the methane that's produced when food breaks down (not sure how many of those there are in Illinois, though). The biggest problem for landfills is paper. NatureMill's marketing materials obscure this by combining the statistics for food and paper -- clever marketing, but annoying and misleading.

So, if you're doing this for the planet, worms seem like a much better choice. They don't need electricity and are just as much work as this thing. Plus, they're way cheaper, have no ongoing costs, don't smell, and you can make their box look as cool as your budget allows. I've seen neat ones made from Ikea boxes.

Of course, if you're doing it for other reasons, then this may be just the consumer gadget for you!

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Nature Mill Indoor Composter
7/2/08 04:22 AM

Tomatoes are easy if (1) you have enough direct sunlight and (2) you water them regularly.

(This won't guarantee that you'll get the best possible yield, but you will get some fruit.)

You need at least six hours of direct sunlight to make tomatoes produce well -- sunlight early in the morning (say, before 9am) or late afternoon (say, after 4pm), doesn't count. If you've got that kind of exposure on the balcony, try tomatoes in a pot.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | Organic Fertilizer For Your Tomatoes
6/30/08 08:44 AM

Drat. The URL got munged. Try this:

Apartment Therapy Chicago | This Sunday: See This House in the Waukegan Home Tour
6/24/08 01:54 PM


More than three desks, actually. Two in the office (one for computing, one for writing), one in the kitchen (meal planning and breakfast), an inherited drop-front desk in the "home" office (bill paying), and one in the craft studio. Yeah, I like a good work surface.


The art is reminiscent of several artists, but I bought these pieces at last year's Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago. They are from three sheets 2 the wind .

Apartment Therapy Chicago | This Sunday: See This House in the Waukegan Home Tour
6/24/08 01:53 PM


The shelf above the desk is a Duoplane. I think it's the CD version (there is now a DVD version). I bought it at The Container Store, but they don't seem to carry it any longer. But it appears that a lot of other retailers carry it, so it's still available.

Apartment Therapy Chicago | This Sunday: See This House in the Waukegan Home Tour
6/21/08 01:15 PM

Yum, peonies are great inside where you can smell the lovely fragrance without breaking your back.

I, too, have difficulty snipping flowers from my garden beds. Having a water-loving cat doesn't help any (I can't use table vases, but have luckily found some wall vases). It seems sacrilegious to cut them.

I just planted four types of flowers in my "vegetable" garden, specifically for cutting. Zinnias, cosmos, sunflowers, and Gomphrena globosa. Let's hope I stick to my plan!

Apartment Therapy Chicago | To Cut or Not Cut Flowers
6/20/08 10:01 AM

Ahem. Milkweed ( Asclepias syriaca) may have "weed" in the name, but I'd rather categorize it as a native plant than a weed. And among a certain set of gardeners (Mayor Daley included), natives are the cutting edge of modern gardening.

Aside from blooming in the summer (and attracting monarchs and other insects), common milkweed has great fall and winter interest (as harriet mentioned). But it can get thuggish as it spreads via seed and underground rhizomes.

A friend of mine grows milkweed to attract monarchs. She hand-raises them in jars to keep them safe from predators. I was surprised that I had monarchs last year, despite having only a handful of plants. Butterflies are so resourceful!

Apartment Therapy Chicago | AT on...Weeds
6/20/08 09:54 AM

I'll second Royal Upholstery in Racine. They know mid-century modern. My mother has some original Danish Modern chairs that had their cushions recovered locally. Years later, when it was time to recover them again, we came across Royal Upholstery (Hans Hansen Furniture recommended them), and their new cushions made the chairs look so much better! Like the originals, really.

I've had several pieces reupholstered and repaired by them, including a swivel rocker. They do a lot of work for people between Racine and Chicago, so Larry heads down to Illinois at least once a week for pick-ups and deliveries.

Apartment Therapy - Good Questions: Mid C Upholstery Restoration?
11/2/07 09:34 AM

While I love Kartell's option described above, the Container Store also has some nice drawer options (Juxta) and plastic boxes that stack.

A tailored curtain could look good (made from a stiffish material with no ruffles -- like upholstery fabric). Or you could hang panels from inside the top of the vanity. Plastic or MDF would work, and you could paint them any color. But a curtain would allow for the easiest access.

Apartment Therapy - Good Questions: Solutions for Under Sink Storage?
10/29/07 03:21 PM

I used to use binders, but ultimately failed because the plastic sleeves were just too much hassle. I guess I save more, and some of my magazines pages are too large for sleeves (Martha Stewart's Living, for example), so they'd have to be trimmed down.

Now I just use several 2-pocket folders stored in a magazine holder. (File folders don't work well because odd-size clippings slip out.) Faster and easier, which means it's more likely to get done.

Apartment Therapy - How Do You Control Magazine Clutter?
10/29/07 08:30 AM

I know the pain of the "great idea gone bad" -- I've had plenty of those in all my years of apartment living ("I thought it would fit..."). Air conditioners are a blessing in the summer, but such a pain in the winter. When I lived on the East Cost, I heard of window-washing companies that dstored window AC units in the winter. Seems like an idea solution for those that could afford it.

It's surprising how big those AC monsters are! I second the idea of finding a trunk or box for it, especially if you can get one that could be used for extra seating. I could see something with a bright red cushion in the Uglyville corner; it would look snazzy with the yellow table.

In a former studio apartment, I used an Ikea crate to store my bedding (no closets!). With a plywood top, it looked like a table during the day. The line has been discontinued, but the Gorm line has a crate now (not sure if it's big enough). Of course, this means that the dresser idea is out. But you could still do a wall-mounted system above the crate.

Good luck! I'm struggling to make my office look as good as I thought it would, so I know the melodrama of a plan that didn't quite work out.

Apartment Therapy - Fall Cure: Week Seven - Weekend
10/27/07 09:25 AM

I've had to take a week off from the Cure, and last weekend was out of town, so I'm struggling to get back into the groove. There's so much left to do! Thankfully, there's not much to do in the bathroom, and I started the bedroom early because it made sense to combine rug-cleaning and other tasks. Happily, I came home to a message that my newly-recovered chairs are finally finished!

It was nice to see more pictures up on Flickr. Soon I'll take some photos of my in-progress office, which is minimally functional at the moment. I'm going to need some help with decisions about what art to hang and where to hang it.

Apartment Therapy - Fall Cure: Week Seven
10/24/07 12:21 PM


No idea what the source is, but part of the beauty of that rug is its non-rectalinear shape. But if you just want a zebra pattern:

Apartment Therapy - Open Thread 79
10/11/07 02:03 PM


The Jellyfish lamp, though a great piece, doesn't really read "modern" to me. Contemporary, yes. Modern, no. As for the "natural" -- well, yes, it does strongly resemble a jellyfish. But to my mind "natural" doesn't mean representative. It means using natural materials and natural colors.

The Harris Marcus lamp seems a bit too cold (the metal is really the desing focus of the piece) for your "natural" theme, but it is modern with a hint of contemporary. At least, that's how it feels to me. It's a bit too fussy to be strongly modern.

The Lumalight seems to be the best fit for "natural modern". The paper -- natural -- dominates the texture, but the shape is definitely modern.

Without seeing the rest of your space, I'd go with the Lumalight.

Apartment Therapy - Open Thread 79
10/11/07 01:58 PM

If you're in Illinois but outside of Chicago, contact your county offices. Solid waste agencies are usually county-run, and they are the ones likely to have compost bins at reduced prices. I'm not sure how other states handle it (i.e., if solid waste is regulated at the county level throughout the US), but I've found that you have to get to the right agency before you can get good information.

Apartment Therapy - Discounted Compost Bins for Chicagoans
10/10/07 05:48 AM