Saturday, March 31, 2012

40 Bag Update: Falling Back in Love with My Home

Let me tell you a story.

Once upon a time there was a young girl.  She loved to decorate.  She was always re-arranging the furniture in her bedroom and adding little touches here and there.  This young girl thought of becoming an interior designer, but she really wanted to help people, so she settled on a different career.  But she dreamed of one day owning a home...and how she would decorate it.  She spent hours drawing plans for homes and designing rooms.  When her friends started getting married, she would ask them when they planned to buy a home and how they planned to decorate it.  Traditional?  Country? Contemporary?

Finally this girl met the man of her dreams and they saved their money and finally bought their first house.  This girl spent every second of her spare time painting and priming walls and refinishing woodwork and floors (yes, she refinished floors!).  She spent every spare dime on items to make their house a home.

This went on for several years and several homes.  The Connecticut farmhouse was done in a country style (natch!), the Princeton Cape was uncharacteristically done in a contemporary style.  And finally, she settled on a traditional style in her current home.  Other women would shop for clothes, this girl would shop for things to make her house a home.  Pottery Barn catalogs could make her drool.  Ballard Designs could make her swoon.  Other families spent their money on luxurious vacations, while this family spent their money on finishing their basement, adding a deck, redoing bathrooms and other things for their home.
Things handmade with love, in my opinion, really make a house feel like a home.

Then this woman started homeschooling.

And blogging.

And she no longer found time to clean her home, never mind decorate it.  Her home got cluttered and disorganized and dusty.  This woman, at times, wanted to pull her hair out.  She longed to feel inspired by her home again.  But she just couldn't get the energy up to do anything about it.

Then, through a blog, she discovered 40 Bags in 40 Days.

Get rid of one bag of "stuff" a day for each of the 40 days of Lent.  Well, that was right up this woman's alley.  She did this periodically, but on a much smaller scale.  A few bags here and there.  Disciplining herself to one bag a day...from all different areas of her home might just do the trick.

It wasn't always easy.  There were days where she didn't have time to do a bag.  Then there were days where she did 4 or 5 bags.

Then she fell back in love with her home.

She got rid of clutter on the shelves in her kitchen and in going through her attic (yes! she got a few bags from her attic!) she remembered the Fiesta wear that she had received as a wedding gift.  Placing it on the open shelving in the kitchen makes emptying the dishwasher and setting the table a snap!

Rather impulsively this woman bought some new slipcover for her living room.  It was impulsive and then a fleeting - oh my!  I am getting rid of crap and here I just bought more stuff! - kind of moment.

But then she saw how the snazzy green slipcover brought her drab, dreary old living room back to life.

She had been afraid that the new slipcovers would mean having to buy new curtains...but so far she is happy with the look :)

My grandma, who celebrated her 93rd birthday last Thursday, down the shore with my Grandpa in the 1930s.
I love how dressed up they are on the beach!

 Allie was the flower girl in my brother and sister-in-law's wedding when she was 2.

3 in 30 Update:  I am still working on 31 Days to Build a Better Blog.  I need to get better at making time for it EVERY DAY.  But I have learned a ton and have attained several of my blogging goals.  I was offered two exciting opportunities this past week that will help me reach more of the goals.