Thursday, October 06, 2011

Home Envy Strikes Again


Now that we're finally beginning to feel settled in our new place, the old feelings of Home Envy are rising within me. It all started with Pinterest, which was supposed to be a tool to help me collect pretty photos and inspire my home decor choices, but quickly spiraled into a full-on pout, bemoaning all the lovely things I would never, ever have. I know, I know - these photos are extremely styled, they don't indicate a perfect life beneath the surface prettiness, and we should be judged not by the content of our homes but by how nicely we treat other people. And yet. And yet.




Oh, Pinterest. You should come with a warning. "Contents may depress the shit out of you."

It's really not that bad and I know I should stop complaining and just be grateful that I have a roof over my head, a good man, two cuddly dogs to keep me warm at night, and a fancy laptop on which to write white whines to my heart's (dis)content. And yet. And yet.

We still don't have a book shelf. Or a kitchen table. Or headboards on the beds. And the water heater was leaking the other day, but I'm ignoring it for now. And the kitchen floor sinks in spots, but I'm ignoring that too. And the driveway floods every time it rains, which is every day, which means our porch and entry way is always speckled with dirt and mud. And the doors stick. And cabinets smell musty. And the dogs drool on the new couch, which is looking decidedly less new already. And, and, and.

A few nights ago I had a dream that we found an apartment hidden in our attic. It was huge - much bigger than the house (which made perfect sense in the dream). It had three bedrooms, a balcony, tons of cool furniture, and a huge kitchen with a long island in the middle. It was clear that our landlady had no idea the apartment existed and we decided she didn't need to know. We slowly migrated all our furniture upstairs and lived there instead. And it was perfect and lovely and beautiful, and suddenly life was amazing.

Most of the time, I like my house and - more importantly - I love the life that I am living while in it. But it's easy to get caught up in the idea that a perfect home equals a perfect life, even when I know that isn't true. Moral of the post: keep pinning, keep dreaming, keep planning, but never forget to be grateful for what you've got. And if it turns out that apartment really does exist, well, you'll know where to find me.


13 comments:

  1. I often have home envy, but I am pretty sure that my time here will be limited to just a couple of years, so I also don't want to invest any more money than I already have on my current place. We made it as homey as possible with pictures and our eclectic collection of old and new furniture (that we bought when we first arrived). I would love to have a rocking chair and a real bed for the guest room, but those just aren't smart ways to spend my money right now. 

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  2. I love that you have a fancy laptop to write on. If you didn't have one, THAT would be tragic. 

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  3. Nathan is actually building a lot of our stuff, which is partly why it's taking so long. I am being patient. Kind of. :)

    And yes! I need to stake out more yard sales, especially since the season for them is ending. Thanks for the reminder!

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  4. Great advice, Chanda. Collecting pieces slowly and loving everything I bring into home is more important than filling it with a bunch of pretty, but meaningless, things. Thanks for the wonderful comment!

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  5. I liked her advice too. :)

    I am a bit of a homebody and I like to have a comfortable, clean space. But I also hate spending money (mostly because I don't have any) so it's an ongoing inner-conflict. I do hear you about kitchen gadgets, though. This is one of the reasons I'm pining for a kitchen table - I miss the ritual of sitting down to eat a meal. Eating in the living room, in front of the TV, just isn't the same. 

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  6. Yes! You are exactly right! I can't wait until that is invented for real. Such a space saver! ;)

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  7. I know exactly what you mean. The fact that we owned our last place and are back to renting has been an adjustment. We don't want to put our own money into this place, but it's hard to see all the things we would fix if we were staying here for longer than three years. And now that I'm entering academia who knows when we'll own anything! I guess I need to adjust and make sure everything I love is easily transported. :)

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  8. I agree. I do like the decor of my blog so that's something! :)

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  9. Ha ha ha. I've felt the same way about Pinterest, too. It doesn't mean I stop looking!

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  10. I completely understand this post. I moved into a new apartment with my boyfriend in March. I was unemployed until August. I am still only employed part-time and with much smaller salary than I had been making. Money is tight is an understatement. The apartment is so cute but it does not have room for a dining room table AND our futon so no dining room. (Which kills me). Money for frames and decorative touches has not existed as of yet. I am saving to buy some paint to paint a wall. I have all sorts of DIY for headboards bookmarked. It is such a depressing thought to think of the home I want to have.

    But it is slowly getting there. A friend moved and we ended up with fabric to diy the headboard (not perfect but not bad either). We got under the cabinets lighting systems for free. And there are plenty of discount stores in NYC once I save a bit. It is just frustrating.

    However, I am happy here. Life is not perfect. Life is hard but that hardness of life just means later on I will appreciate the life I will have more. And for now I am appreciating what I do have. The boxed wine instead of the nice bottles I like. The bigger kitchen than the last apartment. The fact that I have food in my fridge. The fact I have a gifted to me never used comforter (mine was too girly and his was purchased by his ex so I don't want it). These are all blessings and when life was better I did not appreciate them. But when life was harder I did not have them. And when I have better I will be even more appreciative.

    Sorry for the rambling comments but this post really struck a chord with me and helped pinpoint some feelings I have been ignoring.

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  11. You are not alone. I've been living in our house for about two years now and STILL there are so many things I hate about it and so many things I think might never get done (re-carpeting, re-flooring, painting, insulating, and, and, and...)

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  12. And don't get me started about our new couch. Some friends brought it over almost brand new and for FREE because they had no room for it. But it's white. Was white. We have two dogs...

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  13. I used Pintrest to get ideas for Kate's first birthday photo shoot. I got all excited thinking of how awesome these pictures were going to be, and then I realized... I don't have any gorgeous vintage furniture or an immaculately decorated, well lit spot in my home to act as a background. But I do have a camera and a beautiful baby girl and it all worked out perfectly. But, that said, I'm definitely no stranger to (home, photo, etc.) envy courtesy of Pintrest!

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