with Amy Urquhart
I’m Amy and I’ve spent the last three years trying to strike that perfect balance between being a wife, mom and professional career woman. I’ve decided that I’ll never perfect the art of “having it all”, but this blog is a chronicle of my attempts to continue to do so. I’m a blogger (my personal blog about Canadian home life is Hearts into Home), gardener, college instructor, wife to Graham and mom to Nate. If you’re also a working mom who finds there just aren’t enough hours in the day, I hope you’ll enjoy this column!
Read her blog at Hearts into Home.
I feel like I should make the effort to festoon the house with ghouls and goblins — or at least pumpkins and bales of hay. Most of the houses in my sleepy little New England town slipped into full fall regalia the instant the leaves started changing; people around here hang out cute little flags with various icons celebrating various holidays at various times of year. Mailbox poles are twined with fake foliage, small orange pumpkins and warty-looking gourds sit atop stone walls, autumn-themed banners are hung by front doors.
Not at my house. Oh sure, as we get closer to Halloween, I’ll scoop the brains out of a pumpkin or two, carve eye holes and a crooked mouth, and set a tealight inside and call it good, and there will be plenty of candy for little trick-or-treaters, but don’t count on any splendid decorations, because, truth be told, I don’t have the time. But, also, I don’t have the inclination. Forgive me, Martha Stewart, for I have sinned: I don’t decorate.
That’s not quite true: I happily hang ornaments on a spruce tree for Christmas, and I set single (electric) candles at each of the windows post Thanksgiving and hang stockings for each child by the fireplace on Christmas Eve, but that’s more for the sake of tradition than anything else. In general, I don’t decorate. I don’t have an eye for it, or the patience, or, frankly, the budget to hire someone else to do it for me.
This goes beyond changing the look of the house with the seasons. Picking paint colors paralyzes me; I would be quite happy to paint every room in the house some shade of white and then hang art everywhere, except that I don’t end up hanging art anywhere. I’m serious; we moved into our current home in 2001 and I only got around to repainting the kids’ bedrooms last year and haven’t hung a thing on the master bedroom walls. Luckily for us (and for our neighbors), my can-do-anything husband picked up some mad styling skilz somewhere along the road; it is thanks to him that there are big puffs of mums on the front porch and pictures hanging in the living room and a centerpiece on the table at Thanksgiving.
I see shows on TV and read articles in family- or women-oriented magazines about decorating on a dime and cool color schemes and fantastic holiday knick-knacks, and I understand that I’m supposed to love to decorate. I’m supposed to get tired of the same-old look and long for something new, something trendy; I’m supposed to wonder how to make my family room pretty yet practical. I know people who routinely repaint walls or move furniture or even, shockingly, redesign entire rooms on a whim — you walk into their homes and it never looks the same way twice.
I don’t really understand this.
So, when the topic turns to redoing one’s living room because August has morphed into September, or searching for special china for a single meal, or decorating one’s mailbox for each holiday? I REALLY don’t understand this.
Someone explain it to me… do you redecorate with the seasons? Why or why not?
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