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Let’s Go!

Today is our anniversary! Brandon and I have been married for nine years. We’ve been parents for four of those years, and homeowners for six. It’s been good.

I’ve been trying to push him toward a new adventure for us and our family, but we weren’t in agreement. I wanted us to pick up and move to San Francisco for a year.

I love it there! You will too, and the kids will think the streetcars and trolleys are the best things ever! Plus they haven’t settled in with school yet! You’re home now, and I can work from anywhere! We’ll just rent the house out while we’re gone! We could afford it for a year! It will be fun!

And so on.

Brandon is more practical.

It’s an expensive city. It’s hard to find a nice place to live, especially when you’re new to the area. We have a dog and three cats — that’s not attractive to renters. We have a lot of stuff. Our family is here.

And so on.

Eventually, he relented, but it was not an excited let’s go! kind of thing. More like fiiiiiine, let’s go. I was disappointed. I’m not going to drag us all out there if he isn’t into it. An exciting year in another city would be marred by resentment, don’t you think? If we’re going to make a big change, we need to all be on board.

Brandon and the Kids

I’d been looking at real estate listings for months, finding amazing homes in the Chicago area that were way out of our price range. I wasn’t really looking for something, just browsing the same way you might watch House Hunters. Of course, it’s all too easy to type in our town, start narrowing it down by budget, number of bedrooms… You know. Just to see what’s out there.

Then I went on that Housewalk, and oh boy.

There are still things to do to this house, and I think Brandon would be happy staying put. It’s a great house, and we’ve made it really nice over the last six years, but there’s only so much we can do before we start to over-improve a property. If we knew we were going to stay in our home for another six years, we wouldn’t worry about it, but I’m ready for new projects. A new adventure! And when I talked to Brandon about it, he agreed that he was ready too. We’ll be looking for a new home, here in Oak Park, but hopefully in one of the historic districts.

Brandon and August

We’re going to see what our house is worth (I have an idea, but I’d like an expert’s opinion), and we’ll start preparing to sell. I mean, I love pink paint in my living room, but I’m pretty sure that’s only going to appeal to a very small segment of the market. I think the Edison chandelier in the bedroom is probably pretty taste-specific too.

Our house should be ready to hit the market in a month, if not sooner. I’ll be sharing our progress here, of course. We’re excited!

La La La La Lovely Library

Sometimes I can’t come up with a snappy title. Sing it to this.

Under the Eaves in the Library

Hey, I can finally share more pictures of the library! I took these photos last month, shortly after adding the new coffee/play table to the space. Then my computer died and the little laptop I bought to work on while traveling (since I was doing so much of that last year) wasn’t powerful enough to edit RAW photo files. Luckily, my old computer was still under warranty, and I’m now working on a brand new replacement. It took a while to get it, but it’s here and it’s zippy!

Anyway, wide angle shots.

Making it Lovely's Library

Making it Lovely's Library

Got your bearings? Good. Let’s get closer.

Eleanor and August each have toys in their rooms, but we also keep a fabric bin full of stuffed animals for both of them in the library. It eliminates some of the “mine!” dibs to have them on neutral ground. That’s why it’s so good to have the castle out there too.

Stuffed Animals

Clearly I put the cutest toys on top.

The fiddle leaf fig is still doing well. We had a rough first couple of weeks, but now it’s thriving.

Fiddle Leaf Fig

I’d wanted a Michelle Armas painting forever, and when the one I really wanted sold out before I could commit to buying it, I was disappointed. When I spotted that smaller pink and orange one, I bought it right away, even though I wasn’t sure where I’d put it. Turns out it was just what I needed for the library. I also picked up one of those cube sculpture things I featured here.

Michelle Armas Painting in Making it Lovely's Library

And look! Decorating with books, in a library! What will I think of next?

Making it Lovely's Library

A Few Updates for the Front Porch

The nice weather kind of happened all at once here, and now I’m realizing that the front porch needs a little sprucing up. New pillows, a few new planters, and a wire bunny I’ve had for a while will do the trick. I’m going to spend the day out there cleaning, and also tending to some landscaping out front.

A Few Updates for the Front Porch

  1. Outdoor Sundial Pillow

  2. Outdoor Sunburst Pillow

  3. Black Ikat Outdoor Pillow

  4. Wire Hare

  5. Kronos Raised Planters

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