Steve took all of two days off after the magazine redesign/issue deadline before starting on some house projects. His college roommate is in Boulder and is a handy guy, so the two of them tore out the upstairs bathroom and the ugly walls and ceiling of one of the downstairs bedrooms, which Steve is turning into his office.
Here's some before and in-the-middle-of photos.
The office, (waaay) before (before we bought the house, so nice and empty)
The intrepid remodelers...
And the very ugly bath...
With any luck, I'll be able to post "after" images within the week. (If not, it's going to be *very* close quarters in our one remaining bath when my folks come to stay!)
We have a vanity en route from the Los Angeles area (not being brought by my parents -- we've already loaded their station wagon up with our request for cheap Trader Joe wine) that I bought using my new method of freeing up decision-making energy for the actual enjoyment of life. I call it Simplification Through Synchronicity (TM pending).
I "know" someone, by which I mean I read her posts on the simple living site's discussion boards, who just spent a couple of months with her daughter volunteering in a poor town in Mexico. She wrote about the lack of choice at the local tienda -- there either were beans on the shelf or there weren't. When you saw something in stock, you bought it because it might not be there another day. She said that returning to the States and going to the grocery store or Starbucks was paralyzing to her at first. So many decisions to be made before you even bought a quart of milk (non-fat, low-fat, organic, Rbst free, lowest cost, half-gallon a better deal?)
It reminded me of something Steve read months' back, I can't recall if it was a book or an article (shoot, for that matter *I* could have been the one that read it, or heard it on the radio -- mind like a steel trap, I tell ya) about how our minds are overwhelmed by choice -- the number of choices we have to make in a day has increased astronomically and it costs us some amount of mental energy to make each one.
I flashed back on this as I tried to decide what laptop to buy this week, and what vanity to buy for the bathroom. With the internet, there's *so* many options available at so many price points and so much opinion to seek out about relative merits of this versus that. I was completely paralyzed by it all. Until I decided to let the gods guide me. (or universal energy, or whatever. Call it chance. It works just fine for me however you name it.)
So after running computer model after computer model through CNET's reviews, I found one on Ubid.com where the auction was ending in 20 minutes, it was more-or-less in my price range, it got a fairly good review and the high-bidder was from Fort Collins, CO. And the third highest bidder was from Loveland, Ohio (there next town down from us is Loveland.) So I bought it! And it felt so good to have that stupid decision behind me.
Next major choice was the vanity. Researching for hours on the internet. Paralyzed by choices. Finally, I found one I liked, it was a bit more expensive that Home Depot's, but it could arrive a few days earlier and the brand name was Harrison. Bought it. We'll christen the upstairs bath, Harry's Bathroom.
I don't want to spend my life agonizing over these decisions, because I know (from another fairly recent psychologist's interview/book/vaguely remembered source-and-discussion-with-Steve), that it doesn't matter what choice you make, you will be as happy with it as you are habituated to be. The brain has a certain set level of happiness, and we settle at it regardless of which choice we make. We may think it matters what house we buy or what spouse we choose, but in fact we will be about as happy either way, because of the general way in which we have learned to respond to and process things in our life.
So, I'm experimenting with letting the universe, via synchronicities, help me decide. And I'm loving having that extra energy to enjoy the important things in life
New blog - So, made a new blog. Click here if you wanna check it out. Will have more serious stuff there.
6 years ago