The Norris household at Dream Acres is being re-envisioned.
We’re starting with the downstairs. The carpet was twenty years old; it had to go. There wasn’t a budget for the wide plank reclaimed barn wood floors of my dreams (sigh), so we settled for painted subflooring.
But this story isn’t about brilliance on a budget or a home “facelift.” This is a story about how you, too, can RE-envision your home or workplace.
All too often, we live in a smaller story than we were destined for; and this can happen in our spaces as well as our lives. We live with the status quo. Instead, our environment is meant to serve us! Each of us has treasure, gifts, and solutions inside of us that we are meant to bring to this world, and our homes and workplaces should be platforms to launch us into the world.
A key to good organizing is keen self-observation. We have noticed several shifts in our household over the last 6 months or so:
- We’ve had more guests and when they stay, they’ve had to share the kid’s bathroom
- The playroom downstairs posed a dangerous threat to cross-country feet on the way to the conjoined bathroom, as legos and airplanes littered the passageway
- The living room was being ignored (since the carpet had served its useful life), which limited our gathering space
- We are beginning to homeschool our kids and our books and materials are outpacing our shelving.
I began the home re-envisioning by getting committed. It’s a big deal to pull out all your carpet. It’s messy and you basically have to move out of your house. We’ve talked about doing this for a long time, but over Labor Day weekend my husband and I pulled the trigger. If you want to re-envision your home or workplace, begin with the commitment to finish.
For weeks I had been just walking around the house looking at every wall, every piece of furniture, and every possibility. I have been staring at walls and windows and how the house flows. I’ve been thinking about our needs as a dynamic, changing family as well as the clogs that are keeping us from optimum living. I’ve been seeking inspiration, wisdom, and creativity. Finally, I had it:
- We would create a guest suite out of our downstairs playroom/bathroom to give guests more privacy and comfort.
- We would turn the long living room into a library/playroom that would serve as our family’s educational hub.
Re-envisioning your space takes more than re-arranging furniture; it takes intentional forethought about the landscape of your life. After all, the word re-envision invites us to VISION again…to pause and to gain a vision for how things could be different.
In the guest suite, I was able to repurpose an armoire, desk, chair, and bedding I already had. Only a rug, lamp, and fold-out couch were needed. We chose a leather fold-out couch instead of just a bed because as I sought more wisdom, I realized that when we don’t have guests, this room could serve as a satellite office for my growing coaching business – a lovely, cozy, professional space for private meetings that’s adjacent to the office headquarters (or just a quiet space for conference calls away from high octave children!). Guest rooms often sit empty much of the year, and I wasn’t willing to give up valuable ground-floor real estate for a purpose that wouldn’t be served nearly daily. Now, our usable office space has grown and our Dream Acres farm is more hospitable for guests! Re-envisioning should support your purpose, and hospitality and equipping people are both core to our family and business mandate.
The library is in progress with the kid’s curriculum and desks set up and the playroom in vigorous use. The playroom gets much better light now, and the kids are spending more time in the re-invented space. As they get older, less toys will be needed, and educational tools will replace them little by little. One of the reasons I chose to create a library is that our whole family can engage in the learning center, rather than have a “school room” dedicated to the children. This was an intentional choice to make learning an enjoyable, ongoing family affair, rather than a sequestered “event” for the kids only.
When you re-envision, you set aside the boxes you didn’t even realize you were in, like being stuck within a prescribed floor plan. (Who says you have to have a living room?) It’s time to remove the limits you’ve been living with; break down the fences, and bring your life and space into its full potential. Your life is yours for the taking; what do you need to re-envision? A space? An entire household? A business? A relationship?
Get committed, invest some forethought and creativity, undergird your purpose, and accept no limits on the possibilities!
Take a moment to share below what you are going to re-envision!