In Part 1 we visited my aunt and uncle’s beach house; and I delighted in showing you the “garden” sun porch.
Using that as a model, I went home to create my own serene, personal space. At the time, I lived in a 3 bedroom, 1 bath, full basement townhouse.
Being a list-maker, I grabbed a clipboard and pen. Then I slowly scanned my home—room-by-room, corner-by-corner, floor to ceiling—noting what I liked and why, what was out of place/what didn’t fit and the reason, what I saw as potentials, and my emotional responses. It was definitely worth the time. When you’re in the same environment all the time, you cease to really see it … unless company is coming, if you’re like me.
(You’ll want to do this alone with no interruptions or distractions. It can be done in little increments one room at a time, but I felt looking at it as a whole was better to begin with.)
Here are a few of my notations [o = not changeable].
- the accent colors in each room
- each room seems balanced—furniture and wall picture arrangements
- my bedroom—nice size with large closet
- satisfied with my furniture overall; nothing fancy, but comfortable
- photos and (my son’s) art work
- piano & stereo
- many books
- “hidden” room in basement for kids to play in
- green plants
- I don’t have the need to move furniture around often
- round table in kitchen
- walls are all white o
- few windows (1 window per room) o
- view from the front = parking lot; from the back = the patios of other townhouses, a little grass & a few flowers in warm weather o
- sofa too big & heavy with a recliner on each end o
- no wicker birdcage (smile) and no fireplace o
- 2 bedrooms only big enough for a twin bed and dresser; small closets o
- kitchen too small o
- small, round table in basement (needs refinishing)
- rocker in my bedroom
- needlework—I love to knit and embroider
- unused junk in basement
- dying plants in kitchen
- lack of light impacts my mood on a daily basis
- clutter causes frustration and anxiety
- unmade beds, towels not hanging neatly are also frustrating
- my tendency to keep things out until I finish with them adds to clutter
- classical and easy listening music
- piano playing relaxing
- seeing little ones playing in the backyard
- getting the most possible for the amount of rent I can afford
People’s comments when first visiting my home were usually that it looked like me, they knew I’d have lots of books and music, and that it was homey. So I was comfortable in general with my home … minus the dust. Yet, I still wanted my own garden spot.
By moving a few things in my living room, I opened up some space. I added colorful, plumb pillows and a pale green fleece throw to the rocker (from upstairs). I refinished the small table in the basement and placed it next to the rocker. My only purchase was a new lamp—small enough for the table, yet bright enough for reading. I then added a vanilla tealight and a little green plant. The book shelf and music players were within easy reach. Later I added a tiny footstool. It even opened, adding a wee bit of storage room. And, I planned to embroider some little pillows. At Christmas I received a gift … the perfect picture [at right] to place directly across from my garden .
I’ve lived in three states and seven different places since then. Two were furnished. One was a suite in a motel. Another one was not a safe place. You know, life doesn’t always turn out as we expect it. However, only we can make a choice on how to respond and cope with what we’re dealt.
After every move, I have created my garden and posted my depression busters for easy reference. I also saved (and still do) quotes and cartoons, like irreverent MaxineTM, that add smiles to my day. Because I spend many hours on the computer, I change the desktop picture quite frequently with uplifting things! Today it is:
You’ll find me now in Central Oregon, living in a senior complex in a one bedroom apartment. And I am in the process of re-doing my wall above the sofa. The decorating of our homes relates to our stages in life as well as our circumstances and emotions. Therefore, my wall décor is geared for me … to encourage me in my walk with the Lord. I have one more picture to hang. Next time I’ll share it with you along with a list of stress busters and the tricks of adapting home décor ideas to your situation and wallet.
For now, it is your turn to assess your home. Whether it is a college dorm room, a hotel suite, or a mansion, scan it slowly and note things like I did.
Establishing serenity in your surroundings is a challenge. It also is a spiritual journey well worth your planning effort.
Begin a step at time and understand that it is on-going through the stages of your life.
Send me an e-mail. I’d love to hear how your garden building is going.Copyright © by Constance Gilbert | 0 comments