This morning I had a great conversation with a friend about finding her “dream house” vs. finding a home that she can love others well through. It has me thinking about my own journey over the years and this photo is a reminder of how far I’ve come. First, this is a staged photo for a shoot. It’s lovely. That chair fits perfectly and balances out the room with the other textiles used. But here’s the thing — a lot of people live in our tiny house. And one sofa and chair doesn’t serve those people well. Its not enough seating for my littles to pile up for a movie night. And its certainly not enough seating to have our favorite people over for a night of awesome community and good food! They’d have to opt for floor space, and that wouldn’t be loving them well on my part. So currently, there is a love seat in that space that offers a place for an extra friend, or two. It may not strike the perfect balance from a design perspective, and if I had an endless budget I could perhaps fix that problem, but I don’t, and movie nights are much more comfy.
Let me encourage you to think about your furnishings through the eyes of the ones who frequent your house and the people who mean the most to you.
Do the pretty throw pillows support tired backs, or are they in the way and end up thrown on the floor?
Does that white sofa make you a screaming mama, constantly stressed about what’s sitting on it?
There’s a balance between being a good steward of the gifts that we’ve been given and neglect or not taking care of things. My granny had one of those rooms growing up that no one was allowed to set foot in. I think the couch may have been covered in plastic. I’m sure that it was pretty in its day. But us kids endured a good screaming or a sore bottom if we went in there. And I just had the idea, whether or not it was true, that her things meant more than those who should have enjoyed them (and fought over them when she passed). I know, as an adult that isn’t true, but I don’t ever want my kids to have that idea. I learned from the nester how important a cleared off coffee table was to a family with a bunch of kids. So, you may see a beautifully styled coffee table in staged photos of my living room, but you won’t in real life. You’ll see homework, card games, a laptop and whatever else we happen to be engaged in or forget to put away that day, probably a bowl with a pen in it, some coasters and no doubt books, always books.
Be okay with living fully in a place. And look around for things that always seem to hinder comfort or functionality for the peeps you love the most.