Now's the time to practice gratitude. That's my plan anyway. Maybe you're already skilled at this, but I think I need to work at it. (And I'm certain my husband would agree.)
What's all this about? Well, I seem to have developed a habit of focusing on what's wrong with my house, instead of appreciating the things I found so appealing when we bought it.
Those first six months, I couldn't wait to show friends and family our new home. If there was an occasion, I wanted the get-together to be at our place. Three years later, all I say is "We can't have the party here -- the (fill in the blank) project isn't done and the (fill in the blank) looks like (you can fill in the blank here, too.)
What happened? We've spent a lot of time, energy and money on improvements so the house hasn't gone downhill, right?
I think maybe those first few months, I didn't feel the place had to be perfect, because we'd just moved in and were still figuring out what we wanted to do. Now that we have a vision -- and an extensive list of ideas and plans -- I want everything done yesterday and I don't want to entertain until it's just so. And that's kind of sad because the girl who likes nothing better than to throw a party, hasn't been throwing any.
Looks like an attitude adjustment is in order.
When I look at the fireplace, instead of trying to figure out what's not quite right -- is it the screen? Should we somehow cover that crazy-colored brick? Or did I choose the wrong color for the mantle? -- I need to remember how excited we were to find a house with a fireplace you could see from practically every room on the first floor.
Instead of griping about the unfinished trim around one upstairs window, I should consider the big picture. When I look out that same window, I have an unobstructed view -- nothing but farm land and, in the distance, grazing cows. Beyond that, Sandusky Bay.
Instead of focusing on the excess grout we neglected to remove from the kitchen floor, I should be grateful we no longer have the icky linoleum that curled up around the edges. And for the valuable lesson we learned from that project -- some things are best left to professionals!
Instead of grumbling in the morning because two humans, a dog and a cat are all vying for space in an itty bitty bathroom, (I can stand in the middle and touch all four walls, seriously) I might appreciate the fact that small space only takes about two minutes to clean. As for why the pets feel they need to be in attendance when I dry my hair, I have no idea...
Instead of being grossed out by the green carpet that's one of the first things visitors see if they enter through the "breezeway," I should probably... Um.
Let me think.
Yeah, I can't find any love for the carpet.
I'll just... look up. The ceiling out there is a nice tongue and groove knotty pine. I'll simply look at the ceiling when I pass through the breezeway until we get the carpet replaced. Guests will be encouraged to do the same.
Once they're in the house, I'll bet those guests won't even notice the things that bother me.
I mean, the things that used to bother me. Before I stopped whining about what's not done and before I started practicing gratitude.