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Thoughts on the meaning of 'home'…..#lovethehomeyouhave

"You can love your home. Yes, the one with flaws, everyday messes, 
and maybe even a mix of hand-me-down furniture. Sure, it has 
some shortcomings, but it also has a lot going for it -
it's where your life, relationships, and 
dreams are being shaped" 

- Melissa Michaels of the Inspired Room blog and author


Those words above are powerful!  You can't imagine
the number of times I show up for a design consultation
with a new client and I can really feel their 
shame, embarrassment, discontentment and 
unhappiness with their home - the apologies and 
explanations why 'we have never done anything with 
this room' flow fast and furious……it makes me
sad and hopeFULL and grateFULL that I 
have been chosen to help them feel contentment
and happiness in and with their homes.  

I have early memories of noticing surroundings, decor and how
spaces made me feel……I grew up in pretty modest homes.
While my mom liked a tidy and nice home, our homes were
not overly decorated and we had second-hand furniture
long before Craigslist…..But I remember a neighbor 
who customized a basement space with
architectural salvage and period pieces -
'fancy furniture'.  My mom worked at private
school that was located on a former estate property -
the formal gardens and grand architecture were 
not lost on me - I imagined what it had looked
like when the wealthy Chicago meat-packing 
family made it their home…..exquisite, I am certain!
My great-grandma lived on a farm with a cute white
farmhouse with wonky floors and Jenny Lind beds and
cats and gardens galore!  I loved visiting that farm,
while not fancy, being there felt like a big hug.

When I married my husband, our first apartment was a loft in
the city and we saved and bought a LARGE cream-colored
leather {gasp!} sectional….it's what I imagine a young
professional couple, living in the city should furnish their
loft with….of course my tastes have evolved and changed, ebbed
and flowed a million times since then…..but, very early
on I was a collector….Even when I was sitting on that 
leather sectional - my husband and I spent many
weekends at flea markets…those days I collected
colorful Fiestaware and other chippy stuff 
that caught my eye……When I ditched my career
at 31 years young and decided to become a mom,
my desire to create a H-O-M-E for our family
became overwhelming and a necessary part of 
my life, almost like breathing….And I'll admit,
all of my home-making pursuits were not successful or
was I always pleasant like a "Susie-homemaker"….
I blame the hormones and that's my story.

So I guess what I am saying is that fluffing, nesting, decorating,
styling, arranging, painting, baking, burning candles, setting
a table, creating a mood, gardening, entertaining has ALWAYS been
in my blood……even when I didn't really know it was.

Below is a little glimpse at my latest obsession creation,
my design studio/office….it really is filled with things
that make me happy, are meaningful to me and our
family….. Many of the objects included in the space
would not make sense to a fancy-pants 
interior designer, but they make sense to me.
{I can't even explain my cane collection!}

When I work with clients, I try to focus on how I can help enhance
what is already there in my client's spaces….My clients often
are not able to clear a room and start from scratch and truth be told,
that's not the work I want to do.  Ultimately, I want to leave
a project with a happy client, a client who feels 200% better about
their home, a client who is excited to have a dinner party,
host their daughter's graduation party…..a client who ultimately
is happy and content in their home……Sometimes this goal
is reached by extensive renovations and new furniture but often
this goal is reached by a couple trips to Homegoods and arranging
a bookshelf…….It's giving the client permission to LOVE 
having grandma's vase displayed, to paint the wall, to hang
their pictures a tad bit lower {serious people!!!}……
Ultimately, it's honoring the family that lives their, their
lifestyle and priorities.

My blogging pal, Melissa Michaels,  who I quoted above has written a book that 
talks eloquently about creating a home you love.  I have just finished
reading her words and I seriously wish I could show up to
every design consult with her book LOVE THE HOME YOU HAVE
in hand to give to my client!  It is a must read for those who
feel anxious, unsettled and unhappy with their home.

You can go HERE to view the book trailer and 
learn more about this phenomenal, real life applicable book.

Then go HERE and get yourself a copy!!!
{especially if you are or are going to be my client - ha,
just kidding…..maybe not!}

Hey look!  I am blogging…..kinda like riding a bike!
I have missed you….are you still here???



Lately life has been full….certainly not any fuller than yours, but I am
sure you understand….the good, the less-than-good, obligations, choices,
socializing, working, worrying, being a friend, being a momma, a wife, 
cooking, cleaning, planning, celebrating….you get the idea.

This season of life with teenagers is much of what
I expected but different in so many ways…I find myself wanting
to hold on to the moments for just a moment longer, to take a mental
picture of the significant and insignificant events, to be present {whatever 
that means}, mostly I just want it all to slow down a bit so I can enjoy it more.
Young momma's I am hear to proclaim - THE TEEN YEARS ROCK!

Ok…how about some photos of what's been going on around here….
The transition of our living room to my office/design studio is mostly done.
I am definitely loving the space and having a place to work!
I will have a post coming soon - I promise!
We have celebrated many BIG family events - my 16 year old got her driver's license {yikes!},
my youngest officially became a teenager and is definitely my 'fashionista' and creative soul - she
loves drawing, going to theatre and having a reason to get dressed up.  My husband and I
celebrated our 24th wedding anniversary -{I was a child bride}.  As you can see,
we are total romantics…..
Clients……I am still amazed people hire me to do what I love.  2015 began with many calls
and emails from people wanting to make their homes beautiful….they have kept me
busier than I ever imagined and have allowed me to learn, grow and dig deep for 
creative inspiration…..I never imagined that I would have a design business, but
I believe I do!

And finally, a reminder to all you Portland friends…..
PLEASE, go to the Caitlin Wilson Trunk Show
at Christopher David in the Pearl District in Portland
either tomorrow {Friday} or Saturday.

I am heading to LA for the weekend - 
taking my new teenager for a girls getaway with 
some friends to see Ariana Grande in concert and then to Disneyland!

Hope life is giving you lots of the good stuff!


Well Hello……Caitlin Wilson Textiles Portland Trunk Show!

Let's not even talk about how m.i.a. I have been, okey-dokey?

I'm popping in today to tell all you local Portland peeps that you MUST
go checkout the Caitlin Wilson Trunk Show that is being hosted
at one of my favorite Portland 
home decor/coffee/florist shops {genius combo, right?},
Christopher David!  You can usually find me perusing Christopher David
after a sweaty cycle class across the street at Burncycle, but I digress…..

I LOVE Caitlin Wilson Textiles - the ready-made pillows are delicious and
her new rug collection….OMG, gorgeous!!!  Her color ways are 
on trend and made to mix and match!

If you are a local Portlander, plan to head to Christopher David
this coming Friday, April 10th or Saturday, April 11th from 10am - 5pm
to check out Caitlin Wilson Textiles!

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