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A Studio for Mom ~ Part 1

After shuffling three children out the door at three different times this morning, I spent 30-45 minutes walking through the house finally putting things away from last weekend.

Take down the birthday banner?  Check.  Put away string, scotch tape and push pins used to hang banner (stuffed behind coffee pot ever since)? Check.  Re-shelve Chip Ingram curricula from Sunday’s Life Group meeting?  Check.  Go through mail and determine if I’ll really take the time to browse through PBTeen or should I round file it?  Check again, (and yet I did move the PB Teen to my nightstand where my chances of browsing its funky new ideas are greater.)

I’ve been holding out on a big project we’re undertaking, primarily because Before pictures aren’t very inspiring.  Our family also celebrates numerous birthdays in January, making for a hectic time even without a big DIY project.  But today I thought I’d update you on our progress because it’s exciting on a few different levels.

Below is our theater room the week we moved into our house almost six years ago.  The screen, sound system, projector, and seats all came with the house. Notice they didn’t pay much attention to wiring details….

I know that to many homeowners, a room decked out like this would be a dream come true, and it might have been that way for us, too, at a different stage in our lives.

But the truth is, the projector was outdated and rarely worked well, and to replace the projector meant we would need to update the whole system.  A couple years ago, Fireman even went so far as to visit a local electronic shop that sells theater systems along with installs.  The man there proceeded to quote Fireman a sum of several thousand dollars to bring this room up to date.

Each year we would re-evaluate our family priorities, and each year we would decide NOT to spend thousands of dollars on updating the theater room.  As much as we occasionally thought it’d be cool to have one, and as many times as other people told us we’d never regret decking this room out as such, the truth is we kept coming back to this:  It just wasn’t that important to us.

(I should add here that we have a very large tv in our upstairs living room which we use to watch occasional movies, to surf Netflix, and to play video games.  Fireman and I also have a smaller tv in our room which we use to watch things together from the comfort of our delightfully cozy bed.  We love our bed…!)

I pondered the idea, off and on, of turning the theater room into a studio for my painting projects and creative endeavors.  With this in mind, I even added “Studio” to my Sixteen Days of Getting My House in Order.

The Little Miss and I optimistically tackled painting one wall a few months back, and then it sat through November and December unfinished.

(I love this little bug.  She has a spelling test at school today and asked me to pray she does well.  My heart is with her!)

Here’s a view of the other side of the room.  Yes, we use the treadmill and weights regularly, which is another consideration as we pondered how best to use this room.  Should the exercise equipment stay?  Should it go?  What about Amaya’s amazing balance beam?

The bottom line was this: The blue-gray paint color and old carpet had to go, the room had become more of a catchall than anything user-friendly, and quite frankly, I was growing tired of our indecision.

Did I mention that my word for 2016 is Initiative?

That may or may not have had something to do with what came next.

Two weeks ago, I sat Fireman down and said, “We need to put the theater chairs on Craigslist.  Today.”

Fireman has made it clear over the years that he likes the bottom line first, so I always blast him with the idea first and explain later.  This system works well for us, although it took me awhile to adjust. I used to build up to my main point by explaining and justifying first.  All that talking plumb wore him out! 

Surprisingly, even after my blasting and explanation, he wholeheartedly agreed that it was time to sell the chairs.  (I think his acquiescence had something to do with the fact the chairs had been stored in his shop for almost three years and he was tired of working around them.)

The theater chairs sold in four days.

Which meant we were a go for carpet removal and fresh paint in the theater room….

….and full-speed ahead on a new Studio for Mom 🙂

I will share Part 2 of this story tomorrow, but will leave you with a few in-process pictures from last week.  Let me just say…..floor adhesive and glued carpet strips take a LOT of Initiative!  Am I ever grateful for family participation on this project.

And finally, I’ll share an inspiring Studio photo that keeps my little heart beating as we move slowly through the stages of this room transformation.  If my final Studio looks and feels anything like this room when we’re finished, I will be a very happy and inspired momma 🙂

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