When you only live somewhere for a year or two or three at a time, it’s easy to talk yourself out of investing the time and energy it takes to make it feel like a home. But in the Foreign Service your entire life is a collection of one or two or three year stints, and if you never bother to create a home, then how will you ever feel at home? That’s no way to live a life.
This was a lesson we learned the hard way during our first tour. We’re wiser now.
Which brings me to my latest project.
As you may recall, we bought a house in the DC area. As you may also recall we’ll only be living here for about a year before heading back overseas. The first four months flew by before I knew it. Of utmost importance was introducing Flynn to all the great things America had to offer, all the while spending some quality time with him before the baby was born. Besides, our stuff was still on a boat somewhere in the Atlantic — we couldn’t even really decorate if we wanted to. And then, the baby. Need I even explain why his arrival kept me busy?
But last week when Flynn headed off to visit his grandparents in Ohio, I decided it was the moment to act. Never mind that we only had 10 months left in this house. Never mind that I wouldn’t have the time or energy to do everything I wanted. It was important, I knew from our mistakes in Benin, to do something. And so, with much help from my mom and a little help from Andy (who was otherwise occupied with the thankless task of basement organization), I devoted myself to fixing up the boys’ rooms.
First up, the toddler.
When I asked Flynn what kind of room he wanted, he requested trains, airplanes, and Mickey too. Trains or airplanes? No problem. Trains and airplanes. Tougher. I doubted I would find such a bedroom set at Pottery Barn Kids, but thankfully Etsy came through — on the trains and airplanes decor, anyway. Mickey, we had to mix in ourselves.
Want to know something cool? That comforter is fitted at one end, meaning a certain toddler no longer has an excuse to demand the presence of his parents at 3 a.m. because “my piggies came out.” Why doesn’t all kids bedding come this way?
What did he think?
And now, the baby.
Andy thought a whale themed room for Jonah was a little too obvious. But I thought it would be cute, so tough luck to him.
What did Jonah think?
Our room, the living room, the dining room, and the basement are works in progress. I hope to be able to post some finished product photos soon. As for the kitchen… anyone want to gift a mere $100,000 to the cause? No takers? Okay, in that case, it might be a while before we see any real improvements there.