Monday, January 10, 2011

My New Favorite Place

Because we homeschool, I get the privilege (and usually I really do feel this way, though not always) to be with my children all the time.  But that privilege gets tricky when I also need to spend a significant of time working from home (I am a children's ministry director at our church).  I take the kids with me to work on Tuesdays for staff meetings and they do fairly well at keeping busy with their school work and quiet activities while I am occupied there.  But at home it was a different story... until about a month ago.

I shared my frustration with Dustin that every time I sat down at my laptop in the kitchen or in the family room, the kids needed something.  It wasn't their fault - but I knew that I needed a way to signal that it was time for me to be working and for them to keep themselves occupied, like they do so well when we go to church.  As I brainstormed with Dustin about how I could better signal to the kids that it was "work time" for me, he gave me the most amazing gift!  He suggested that we turn our living room (you know, that room at the front of the house that you decorate so it looks decent but that no one ever goes into) into a home office.  That way the kids would know that when I am in my office, I am working and they need to let me work.  And it has been a brilliant plan!

Dustin is the kind of man that gets jobs done quickly.  With him, there is no hmming and haaahing - so we got right to work.  First, we had to get rid of all the living room furniture.  That was not as easy as I thought it would be.  We tried selling it on Craig's List but had no responses.  Then I offered it to our church, but they didn't need it.  I then called Habitat for Humanity and they were thrilled to receive it!  When the men came to pick it up, they were so cute.  They were so enthusiastic - they said it felt like Christmas and I was so glad to give it to them and to the organization.   Here is a picture of the room before we pulled out the living room furniture:
Once the furniture was gone, we were able to figure out how we wanted to use the space so that it functioned well but felt comfortable and pretty.  So we headed to Ikea to pick up a desk and bookshelves along with some potted plants and a carpet and put that puppy up in about 24 hours - and if you know anything about Ikea furniture, that is not a small job!  We had an old antique secretaries desk that we had been using in the sun room that I knew I wanted to put into the room.  We bought the desk for $10 at a garage sale in our first year of marriage and refinished it green (it used to be a dingy brown) and it has been a great piece in every home we have lived in, plus it carries a lot of fond memories of the hours we spent in our first few years of marriage refurbishing and refinishing old furniture because we had NO money to spend and lots of time.

Next, I brought down a chair that was sitting in our bedroom upstairs which I absolutely loved but didn't match with our bedroom at all.  And then I found some fabric to tie in the chair, the red carpet and the green desk at Hobby Lobby (man, I love that store!) and recovered two of our dining room chairs that weren't being used to sit below a mirror (left over from the living room set up).  I looove my new office.  The windows look out to the front of the house and today it is snowing heaps on our front lawn and it is the best view!  Next week we are having french doors installed on the office so that I can have a bit of quiet as I work and pray and study.  Here are some pics of the end result - the chandelier is like the jewelry on the room... it's definitely my favorite part of the finished product.

This is the view from the entry hallway.
And another view from the entry hallway.
The two dining chairs that I recovered flanking an ikea table.

The lighting isn't great in this pic but this is the view looking out the windows onto the porch.

The view from my chair into the hallway - where the french doors will be!

And the jewelry that makes it sparkle like a girl's space should...

I looove my new office.  Dustin worked so hard to make it the office of my dreams and was such a thoughtful Christmas gift.  Not only that, but it has been the answer to our issues with giving the kids a signal of my "work time".  I am so grateful.


  1. I love this! What a great looking office- glad you have carved out a place for you to work!

  2. It's beautiful! What a nice work space for you!!