Back in my last post, I talked about setting some goals for 2016 – and then didn’t! Whilst it’s still early(ish) January, I thought it was time to get myself focussed for the year ahead and think about what we would like to achieve around our home over the next 12 months. (Our personal goals have all been discussed and agreed. We all sat down together and I made a list for everyone. It’s funny, the children really loved it, I think it made them feel very grown up!)
I always hesitate to share my goals here on the blog as, often, life takes a twist and a turn and suddenly the things that were important at the start of the year, suddenly become less so. However, as you know, I do love a list and my favourite thing about it is ticking things off, so that’s how I’m viewing my goals this year. It’s just a list. If we manage to achieve some of them, I will take great delight in ticking them off, but if we don’t, or if we find we need to change the list, so be it.
We have many home-related goals this year. I feel like we are moving forward and making progress with getting our home to work in the best possible way so I’m really motivated to work further towards that goal. Over the Christmas break we have finally made the decision to replace our kitchen without extending (this is a decision we have gone backwards and forwards on at least a dozen times this year!) In the end, we finally agreed that actually, we have more than enough ‘space’ for our family so spending a fortune extending our home wasn’t really a sensible option. Therefore, we are changing the way we use the space we have and trying to keep the cost down as far as possible. This means altering the use for some of our rooms, re-decorating and replacing carpets etc. rather than adding the extension we have talked about for such a long time. So, whilst I would be fibbing if I told you I’m not just a bit disappointed to let go of my vision for our home, I am excited to share with you the updates that we do make.
For now, here are our 2016 home goals:
1. Change the den into a ‘study.’
It’s amazing how a short amount of time in the life of our family can see such a transition in how we spend our time and use our space. Since our daughter moved up to secondary school almost 18 months ago, we have seen a very big shift in the way we use the rooms within our home. The children are moving to a phase in their lives where they will need quiet space away from the rest of the family to study and be focussed on individual tasks and activities. As this has occurred, we (as their parents) have found ourselves with a bit more time to write, read, catch up on paperwork and spend time planning and organising our family. Both of the children are very happy in their bedrooms. They have space to work and relax and they enjoy their surroundings. We make sure to drag them out as often as possible for family time and, whilst we were initially reluctant to accept that this shift was occurring, I think we can see now that they are growing up and need to feel they have some control over where and how they are spending their time at home.
With all this in mind, ‘the den’ hasn’t been getting as much use as it was previously and it’s a little bit of a wasted opportunity. Part of my job involves working from home and with the blog as well, it makes sense for me to have a space to work too. We were going to incorporate a study area into the new guest bedroom but it’s not as big as it was previously (before we swapped things around) and having talked through the pros and cons, it made more sense to us to use the den as a study and keep the guest bedroom as just what it is (
a dumping ground which only gets tidied up when we have guests to stay).
2. Replace our kitchen
This is a big and very exciting one. We haven’t changed anything in our kitchen since we moved in back in 2004. I have been longing to update it for more than 11 years now and I finally feel we are within touching distance – that’s got to be something to celebrate! All of our appliances are very much on their last legs – our fridge/freezer, oven and dishwasher have been playing up for years and on Christmas day, my husband particularly enjoyed the fact that the oven kept switching itself off when he was trying to cook Christmas dinner for 10!
Unfortunately, the kitchen choice is proving a bit of a tricky decision. When you are talking about making such a large purchase, you have to know that it’s right and at the moment, we are struggling to find the ‘right’ kitchen. More on that another day but I’m so glad this one is officially ‘on the list!’
3. Re-decorate the hall and landing areas and replace our stair carpet
Again, our stair carpet has needed replacing pretty much since we moved in. (Why do we leave everything so long? Money!) When our little Bo was a puppy, she put the final nail in the coffin by chewing the carpet on the bottom few steps. Since then, we’ve had a bald patch to add to the dark stains and threading. Joy! Anyway, we’ve been hesitant to replace this carpet until a) we were sure Bo had stopped her chewing and b) we had finished decorating what we needed to upstairs. I’m hoping beyond hope that there will be no further carpet chewing (listen up BO!) and as for the rest – well, is anything ever really finished?! No point waiting around any longer in my opinion!
4. Re-decorate our daughter’s bedroom
Since we moved our son into his lovely new room, our daughter is very keen to update her room and to be honest, it could do with sprucing up (and it definitely needs a new carpet!) This picture hides the flaws well! We have assured her it’s on the list for this year. She wants the panelling too so we’d better get cracking if we’re to be finished before next Christmas!
5. Re-decorate our guest bedroom
And lastly, there is still the guest bedroom to sort out. Since our son moved out, the word ‘dumping ground’ doesn’t begin to cover what we’ve created in here! (The picture above shows the room as it was before the room swap). Some of his belongings and furniture from the previous guest room are still hanging around along with cast-off’s from every other project we’ve undertaken in the past year. We need to clear out and clean up! It feels like a very overwhelming task at present but I’m determined we will chip away at it over the course of the year.
That suddenly seems like a ridiculously huge and unachievable list! Oh well, hopefully we might be able to tick some of these off by the year end. I’m feeling pretty motivated having written it down anyway!
How about you? Are you busy getting motivated to make 2016 a year of change in your home? Or settling into a new year without too much on your to-do list? I can’t wait to get started with ours!
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