In 2014, one of my goals is to appreciate our house as it is instead of focusing on what I would change or where it doesn't measure up. This is something that I'm constantly working on.
I really enjoy thinking of and doing projects around the house, like hanging a gallery wall of art and photos, but I can become overwhelmed with all that I would love to change. This includes big overhauls like repainting the entire house to new floors to landscaping the front and back yards to new counter tops. Right now, as we focus on debt reduction, these large home improvement projects are just not in the cards.
Then there are other, smaller projects, like potting plants and hanging additional art and photos that I'm also always wanting to do. But with all that's already going on, these projects don't often make it to the top of my priority list. I'm also plagued with indecision in trying to take on a small house project. I'll know that I want to hang some art but what art? What color should the frame be? Will it "go" with everything else? And on and on until it feels too stressful to even begin.
For whatever reason, last week in particular I was feeling full of dissatisfaction for our house. Everywhere I looked I saw something that needed to be cleaned, organized or taken to Goodwill and could only see how our house falls short of my aesthetic. And then we had friends over on Saturday night.
We had tidied the house but our white tile floors were showing plenty of dirt and flung toddler food. Our carpets desperately need to be cleaned and we set up a pack and play for our friend's son amidst complete chaos in our office.
But our boys played while we caught up. I shoved some stacked mail to the end of the island and put out chips and salsa. On a whim, I decided to make the oatmeal chocolate chip cake I've been craving. Our sons were both asleep by 7 and so we took our snacks in to the backyard and were able to have a luxuriously long conversation. I brought out cake and lit candles when it got dark. No one, including me, cared about our dirty floor and all the ways that our house could be "better". Because what could be better than a house where there is cake and laughter with good friends on a beautiful late spring night?
I am reminded, once again, that houses are for living and we live a really great life in our house. And that's really all that matters.