~ Tour of My House In Words ~

Cover of sheet music for "Home! Sweet Hom...

Cover of sheet music for “Home Sweet Home”. Words by H.R. Bishop & John Howard Payne, music by   H.R. Bishop, Chicago: McKinley Music Co.1914 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


I have a sign that says “Dreams…do come true” casually propped up on a bookshelf in my office. On the bulletin board over my desk is a handwritten note that says ~ “Everything you want is just outside of your comfort zone.” It is attributed to Robert Allen–I do not know who Robert Allen is, but I like what he said.

Over the doorway of the staircase that leads to our second floor is a quilted homespun sign with this message: “A clean house is the sign of a life misspent.” Suffice to say that I have not misspent my life, at least in the clean house category.

Above the door leading from the kitchen to the dining room is another sign. It demands in bold letters ~ “Give Me the Coffee and No One Gets Hurt.”

Upstairs in the bathroom is yet another sign. It is one that my husband chose and says: “Changing the toilet paper does not cause brain damage”. He loves this sign. No one pays any attention to it though.

Tucked into my bookshelf in my bedroom is another note–printed this time in black ink. The words are those of Ralph Waldo Emerson.  I read it almost every night before I go to bed–it says:

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day: you shall begin it well and serenely….”

So much for a tour of my house. Do you have any signs hanging in your home or handwritten notes tucked away?

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90 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. No signs hanging in my home.
    I like the sign over the doorway of your staircase. It just spoke to me & told me that my life is not misspent 😉

  2. I don’t have any signs but I think this is a brilliant idea and I am going to do it!

  3. I don’t know who Robert Allen is either but I love the quote.

    I have a sign on the kitchen wall that says “A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.” I have no idea who wrote it but I love the sentiment and am fortunate to have such a friend.

    • what a wonderful sign–I love that – nice to have a friend who would give you something like that and mean it

  4. It took my husband and I 29 years to get from the first marriage proposal to the altar. On our honeymoon last spring, I bought a little tiny plaque with a picture of a house that says “And they lived happily ever after.”. After the long fairy tale like story we lived to get here, that’s exactly what we plan to do. :-). Thanks for this nice tour of your inspirational home.

    • I love that — I want a sign like that–maybe I will just make one, but after 29 years, you more than deserve it–my wish is for both of you to live happily ever after

  5. What a great tour of your home. This one is in my kitchen:
    What Happens at Grandma’s House, Stays at Grandma’s House.

    • I can’t use that one yet–but when I can, I will–I love it–a little conspiracy never hurt anyone

      • My daughter (mom of two boys) actually gave me that one.

  6. love the robert allen quote ~ and i love that your husband chose the toilet paper sign, am i being sexist to say that it’s usually the man that forgets? but it’s really the kids who need reminding, eh?

  7. I really need the toilet paper sign. Is it so hard to do? geez

  8. I don’t have any signs currently in my home. I used to have one in the laundry area which said any found change becomes mine. I was so tired of cleaning out my boys’ pockets. I love the toilet paper sign, that’s one my boys still won’t do when they visit, it drives me nuts. Oh and your coffee sign, I think it should be in a few more kitchens!

    • I like the found change one–my husband tours the hour daily to find any change lying about, and in Canada loonies and toonies are change–so you can gather a bit on some days

  9. One sign in the den that my husband heisted from a hunting trip- No Trespasing ( the sign is misspelled) my husband loved the fact that the sign was not correct. Maybe that is why he happened to “pick it up.”

    Anyway, the signs in your home tell me that certain reminders are needed by members of the household, to make it through the day. Just joking of course….

  10. Love the one above the stairs best 🙂 You totally just justified hours and hours of my life :p

  11. Q: How many men does it take to change a roll of toilet paper?

    A: No one knows. It has never been done before.

  12. I love it! We don’t have quotes up, but I may be changing that soon–at least in my office. And I need the toilet paper one pronto!

  13. Hello Ruth and thank you so much for the tour of your very lovely and wordy home. i would some how not expect any less from you..
    I am also an avid RWE fan and use his nature quotes all over flower beds as part of my yard art in season.

    i do have pieces of paper notes with quotes, snippets, excerpts, and of course tunes stashed all over my unkempt home as well. Never knowing what will pop up, I love that serendipitous adventure of re-finding them.

    Also like you I have different quotes on walls and art deco items all over my home, each room. My art room may house the most. I find having the words that touch my soul also inspire my creative wings to soar are.as important as my music is.

    My fave at this current time is a wood plaque painted simply with a cream background framed in black and in black vintage fonts says
    ” Cherish every memory ~ Love every moment ~ Embrace every possibility.

    and my oldest and always treasured is my ” Let it Be ”

    I always enjoy your post so much ~ thank you Ruth!

    • I really should put my name somewhere — it is LouAnn–I love Let It Be–so good for so many of life’s little lesson–and I will try to cherish every memory todaY…….

  14. Signs are an awesome idea, I love home improvement 🙂

    Choc Chip Uru

  15. I have a pillow embroidered with Start Slowly and Taper Off..

    I need that clean house sign.

    • I love that–I need that pillow–maybe we can exchange signs for a while

  16. I have only one quote in my office, and it is attributed to Groucho Marx and it goes like this, “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” Silly, but it makes me giggle when I read it. Love the toilet paper sign and the quote by Emerson.

    • I made some bookmarks for my writers’ group and included that saying–it is one of my favorites!

  17. LouAnn, you just made laugh because I looked up from your post to see the sign on the wall in my kitchen. It says, “The Looney Bin – Abnormality is the normality at this locality”. It is the perfect sign for my household!!

  18. I have several, as well. And I just bought a new one for the Christmas season:
    Santa Claus and the Stages of Life:
    1. You believe in Santa Claus
    2. You don’t believe in Santa Claus
    3. You are Santa Claus
    4. You look like Santa Claus

    (we’re aging, here, and this made me laugh out loud, so I bought it!)

    • I love it but number 5 should be — You believe in Santa Claus again!

      • Years ago my ultimate boss said that quote as a reason he shaved off his beard that he had had for 35 years.

      • ha ha

  19. My lat Mum bought be a plaque that hangs in our hall and that says
    “Cats are like potatoe chips, you can’t only have one”

    So true, we have 2 cats!!

  20. Should say My late Mum bought me a plaque

  21. I don’t have any signs or hidden away notes but I think it’s time to change that.. Words are welcoming..

  22. I am glad we can be forgiven for our blunders and absurdities. I think that sign speaks volumes. I am looking around this house for signs…but, no. Perhaps it’s time for one or six!

  23. What a great post, LouAnn! I’ve had many throughout the years. The two I have currently are,

    “Give thanks in all circumstances” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
    I have this one by the linen closet, don’t ask me why. haha!

    “Keep Calm and Carry on.” I bought this in London many years ago and now I see it all over the place. It does have a calming effect when I walk in the house from my mud room, usually exhausted or hurried. I guess the Queen issued these to be put up all over London during the second World War. And yes, sometimes my house is a war zone. LOL!

    • I love both your signs– the first because it is what we need to remind ourselves; and the second one because we all need to take that extra breath

  24. We have a faux street sign reading Chum Bucket Lane over the entry to the kitchen in the summer place. Expectation management: Check.

  25. No signs up, but I have a book of Will Rodgers quotes and another book of John Wooden’s quotes in the bathroom. Not bad reading there.

  26. signs…lots of them…The Allen quote and a mantra stare back at me when I’m on the treadmill, (in fairness there is also a gorgeous view of the Tulip Poplar), Bathroom signs, kitchen reminders to eat healthy and a visual of what 5# of fat looks like compared to 5# of lean muscle.
    But LouAnn, I love the Emerson quote and I think I’ll add it to my nightstand…I do a brief reflective journal before bed and that will be such a positive ending, thank you.

    • it helps a good nights sleep–I find it calming–glad you love words all over your house too–but I would get rid of the fat visual

      • haha…it keeps me on track though….my goal is still to increase muscle mass and decrease fat mass…a work in progress to be sure.
        A good nights sleep is worth gold!

      • muscle mass is good!

  27. I didn’t think we had any, but I just glanced above our front door and wondered what it above it,,, Bless this home and all those who enter it.

    • I love that–must get that for my front door–so welcoming and reassuring

  28. Magnet on the frig; I’m on the second leg of a return trip home to being me.

  29. I have one that is above a sacred place for me
    that says “Do No Harm” it keeps me grounded
    in accepting what is in the moment…I think these days before I react..to someone or something’s action…

    but oh how I like yours…!
    my life is definitely not mis-spent LOLs..
    and I love this one…
    ***“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them
    as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day: you shall begin it well and serenely….”**
    I enjoyed this post very much…I always like your posts this will travel with me i think I will have to have these hanging in my life’s doorways….
    Thank you Lou…I am off to work with thoughts to roam around in today..
    I appreciate your words
    Take Care…

  30. Mostly I’ve avoided signs because I tend to like the too serious ones so to keep a better balance I now have only these two by my desk to remind me of:
    optimism by George Carlin: Cloud nine gets all the publicity, but cloud eight actually is cheaper, less crowded and has a better view.
    childlike wonder by Gracie Allen: When I was born I was so surprised I didn’t talk for a year and a half.

    • love the quote about cloud eight; and have always loved Gracie–thanks for sharing both!

  31. At work I have the poem “Don’t Quit” up (I will not post the whole poem here) and this:

    “Fight on, my men,” Sir Andrew Said

    ”A little I’m hurt but not yet slain.

    ”I’ll just lie down and bleed a while,

    ”And then I’ll rise and Fight again.”

    • so far so good–sounds like a metaphor for life–I’ll rise and fight again–done that a few times–but haven’t we all? Thanks for sharing

  32. I like your house signs. After reading this I got up and wandered around my house looking for signs. We have Cody’s 100 sight words taped to the dining room wall, Cody’s labeling room project, a hand written sign the boys made with swirls and robots that says Welcome Home Poppa!! from when Husband was out of town for a week, and I have a pillow that I love on our couch that says Nest: a place of retreat, (n.) rest, or lodging: \ ‘nest\.

  33. I love the signs you have displayed around your house. Given that we now live in our RV and there is no wall space, the only signs I have are two magnets on my fridge. One is “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” and the other is “All know the way…few actually walk it.” There is also a pillow on my bed that says “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”

  34. […] all my favourite quotations are about travel, however. Fellow blogger, LouAnn at On the Homefront, has this one by Robert Allen, author of The One Minute Millionaire, on the bulletin board above […]

  35. Funny thing I had some time and went by a thirft store and found a plaque with my favorite poem on it. Yes, I bought it. I guess this post was guided by something else. I guess I will share the poem:

    Don’t Quit

    When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
    When the road you’re trudging seems all up hill,
    When the funds are low, and the debts are high,
    And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
    When care is pressing you down a bit,
    Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.

    Life is queer with it’s twists and turns,
    As everyone of us sometimes learns,
    And many a failure turns about,
    When he might have won had he stuck it out.
    Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,
    You may succeed with another blow.

    Success is failure turned inside out,
    The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
    And you never can tell how close you are,
    It may be near when it seems so far,
    So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,
    It’s when things seem worse,
    That you must not quit.

  36. I write myself notes sometimes on post it notes on my computor. Most of the time that is all I’ll need to get a boost to do what I need to do. But sometimes it will take a bit more than that.

  37. Oh, I love this. I’m a huge collector of quotes…everything from the profound and touching to funny and sarcastic. One of the joys of the internet is the almost unlimited ability to find great quotes. I like the ones you’ve mentioned here, particularly the last one. Favorites of mine? Too many to list! But here’s one I am currently mulling over:

    “If anyone would tell you the shortest, surest way to all happiness and all perfection, he must tell you to
    make a rule to yourself to thank and praise God for everything
    that happens to you.

    It is certain that whatever seeming calamity happens to you, if you thank and praise God for it,
    you turn it into a blessing.

    If you could work miracles,
    therefore, you could not do more for yourself
    than by this thankful spirit.

    It heals and turns all that it touches into happiness.”

    ~ William Law, A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life

    ~ Sheila

    • very profound — I actually have a book for spiritual quotes and I am going to add this one to it–thank you

  38. I have several plaques around (once I unpack them) but the one I start my day with is “This is the day the Lord hath made…let me rejoice and be glad in it”…..It’s my start for the day whatever it holds…Diane

  39. I have one above my home office desk, it’s an often cited expression, but it speaks to me on particularly rough days. “Keep calm and carry on”.

  40. I have the quote “To succeed in life you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone, and a funnybone.” (by Reba McIntire) stenciled on the wall between my living room and kitchen. And every time I clean my room I write a new inspirational quote in dry erase marker on my vanity mirror, so that I can see it when I wake up each morning. My bedroom light switch cover also says “Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if only one remembers to turn on the light” (from Harry Potter). I have a few more stencils and light switch covers in the works for the laundry room and the family room as well!

    I love your quotes LouAnn, and I’m definitely not surprised that you have little reminders all around the house too 🙂 xoxo

    • I love your words of wisdom scattered around your house–I may just use your idea about writing an inspirational quote on my bathroom mirror–I have one right now: If not now, when?
      I love Reba, and I love her quote….

  41. I have to laugh that right after ready Breezy Books’ post on “World Toilet Day” http://breezybooksblog.wordpress.com/2012/11/19/its-world-toilet-day/ and commenting about the sign in my bathroom, I happen to click on your post and see your reference to that same sign (which also is ignored by the men in my household . . .) ~ Kat

  42. “Galley” in the laundry room and “Is it too late to be an heiress?” In Miss Z’s room among others… Thanks for visiting!

  43. “my only domestic quality is that i live in a house”
    “we give comfort and receive comfort sometimes at the same time”
    “courage is merely a series of small steps”

    • do a post about these–they are just great–love all of them–live by the first one especially

  44. I was given a magnet that says “No woman ever shot a man who was doing the dishes.” Another one says “It’s been Monday all week” 😉

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