I love all the big changes made to my office during it’s makeover. I especially love how clean and fresh it feels.
But, for me, this room is all about the details.
There was a time when this room was more of a second family room. In addition to my desk and computer, the kids had their shared desktop computer in here. And the closet and drawers in this room held all of the items they needed for homework and school projects, like three ring binders, folders, markers, and poster board.
With Lindsey about to graduate from college and Grant about to start, the days of shared computers and school projects are long gone. So while clearing out this room I donated a lot of that stuff and turned the office into something that really reflects where I am in my life now.
The built-in bookshelves – which once were an easy place to stash spiral notebooks, boxes of notecards, and high school yearbooks – are once again a place for my books. And because this was a fresh start, I took this opportunity to organize the shelves by theme.
I started with my personal finance books on the top shelf. (Personal finance is often what I’m thinking about/reading about when I’m not focused on the kind of stuff on this blog. If you want to see the other half of my split personality, you’ll find it at my family finance blog, The Family CEO.)
The next shelf down holds reference books, including my high school dictionary and a great book I rediscovered during the office clean out: How to Photograph Your Life.
The third shelf holds books on faith and spirituality.
And the next two shelves are full of novels and memoirs by women authors. The women authors thing wasn’t intentional; I’m just realizing it now as I look at these pictures. There’s also the book Daring Greatly by Brene Brown, which I highly, highly recommend. (If you haven’t heard of Brene, check out her TED talk (which went viral): The Power of Vulnerability.)
And the bottom shelf holds miscellaneous stuff, like a textbook from my Children’s Literature college class, the What to Expect books which were my Bibles at one time (probably yours too if you have kids born in the 1980s or later), some diet books (which I need to take off the shelf and put into practice), and my Margaret Truman paperbacks (I love mysteries + I love Washington, DC = I love Margaret Truman).
The books really personalize this room for me, and so does the artwork that is in here, starting with this picture painted by my Aunt Janice.
The house in the picture is the Western Kansas home where my Grandpa grew up, and the frame is made with boards from the house. Does it get any more special than that?
This National Book Festival poster is another favorite of mine. I picked it up when we were visiting the Library of Congress on a DC vacation in 2004. It was free since it was the previous year’s poster.
I brought it home and had it professionally framed. It hangs right by my desk and reminds me daily that the National Book Festival is on my list of things to do someday.
And I still love the contained chaos of the memo board, where I stash pictures, ticket stubs, and postcards. It’s like a scrapbook for the wall and it’s always changing.
The things hanging from the doors on the vintage cabinet are there out of necessity, since the doors don’t like to stay closed on their own. I used to have a huge tassel hanging here, but decided to change things up a bit and use this Christmas ornament year-round instead.
I also customized my corner desk a bit by replacing the wooden knobs that came with it with these glass ones.
And while the kids aren’t hanging out in the office with me much anymore, they’re still kind of everywhere. In pictures, of course, but this is where I keep a lot of the things they’ve made for me or bought as gifts over the years.
Having this room feels a little like having my own bedroom did as a kid. Or maybe it’s more of this really: