Tuesday, September 29, 2009


There is nothing like a nap by the fire!

“Think what a better world it would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o'clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap.”
---Robert Fulghum author of 'All I Really Need to Know I Learned in KIndergarten'

Not that anyone is asking, but for those of you wondering where I have been since my last post, the answer is fitting in as many naps as possible!

In early September I was thrilled to receive a promotion at work! It's all very exciting. But for me, change is also exhausting, both mentally and physically.

One of my favorite ways to recharge is to nap. This drives my husband crazy, he is an 'up-and-out' kind of guy. But I just love to nap! My weekend is not complete without a long nap - preferably two-to-three hours - on Saturday or Sunday. I'm in heaven if I can fit in a nap both days.

What makes for a good nap retreat? Here are some great examples from the pages of House Beautiful . And all these decorating styles would work beautifully in a smaller space.

A comfortable place to stretch out, good lighting, a throw to ward off any chill - this is the perfect nap spot. (And take a peek at the lovely desk chair. I could see myself doing a little work and then curling up for a catnap on the couch.)
Again, all the basics for great napping can be found in this room. And it's perfect for nappers who prefer a more subdued color scheme.
This might be a bit bright for some nappers, but I just love to soak up the sun while dozing.

The coziness of this spot appeals to me. I also like the clean subtle lines of the space.

Until next time happy napping!


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

More From Charlie on Big House Addiction

Too big, too expensive, too isolating, too pretentious,
too much.
Great tile from Italy
won’t fix that – neither will brushed nickel sconces.
- Charlie, Resident North Shore of Chicago

Charlie is back! Just yesterday he sent an update on his struggle with big house addiction.

But first, to hear my nervous radio debut, click on Inspirista - Girls Night Out. I talked too much, interrupted the radio hostess - who was delightful - and according to my husband, shared too much personal information. But I have always been open and trusting, and since I'm 50-years-old, those character flaws are here to stay.

And now for the main attraction, here is Charlie:

I’ve progressed on my journey – and recently completed a level-headed inventory of my addiction.

I only told half the story last time – the saucy part about addiction and excess. A fair inventory would include some items from the positive side of the ledger – so here’s an example of how the big house is a force for good….or is it?

August is the best month of the year. Camps are done, people get back from wherever they go in the summer, and everyone pushes to finish the summer with a bang.

Our phone rings off the hook, our driveway is full of bikes and kids run wild all over the place.

My wonderful wife treats our little guests with fruit, crackers and juice, and the big house is covered with empty bowls, cups, wrappers and leftover clothes from kids too excited to take them home. The big house is the late summer destination of choice for the elementary and middle school set.

Across our street is a pond often lined with fathers and children fishing. There are trails and woods too. We see lots of friends walking, fishing, on bikes and in cars – and we often stop to chat. Great community interaction happens on our front sidewalk.

At night, when we go to bed, we’ve got a routine where my wife and I visit each kiddo, tuck them in, and tell them how much we love them.

After that, as the day ends, it always hits me: the big house is excessive – it’s dark and empty – like addiction. It takes 33 steps from tucking my boy in to the threshold of my bathroom – too big. My wife goes to one room, I go to another – too big. Too big, too expensive, too isolating, too pretentious, too much. Great tile from Italy won’t fix that – neither will brushed nickel sconces.

This leaves questions about the source of happiness: Is it the big house, or is it our lives, friendships and involvement in community that really makes us happy?

The answer is clear.

The next step is to develop a treatment plan for the addiction. If you haven’t suffered addiction in your family you should know that the only thing an addict hates more than change is the way things are – so the next step will be interesting…

…and I’m working on that.



Until next time!