Monday, August 4, 2014

Getting Cozy and being intentional

 Adrain and I are at the stage of life where we've survived babyhood and toddler hood by the skin of our teeth and we've been flung into the deeper waters of tweens and teens.  We hope we survive it and some days are more or less touch and go... But one thing we know for sure- we won't make it out the other side in tact in this world of disposable marriages, unless we are intentional.

{Our kiddos are starting to stay up later and later as they get older.  Naturally.  They lounge all over the sofa and ask to watch their own shows and play the wii with each other and the occasional group of friends, and though I'm always around, listening, and readily available... I suddenly realized I had very few places to retreat to if I wanted a few moments of quiet.  I remember my parents being around but not hovering over the top of my brother and I or my friends and I.  They were always home and checked in frequently and hung out with us a lot, but we also had our own space to connect with peers and so did they.  It was like freedom with accountability and I'm convinced that it helped me make good choices as I moved into young adulthood.}

When I approached Adrain with the idea to create a hideaway in the small nook off our master bedroom, he loved it- providing that it didn't cost much. (Especially in light of the car breakdown we had at the end of spring!)  This bedroom cubby previously housed my small studio space.  It made more sense to transfer all my studio gear into our office (guest room) area, so we did that earlier this summer, (here) and then I shifted mental gears, for flipping this space on a (relative) dime.  I had a couple of friends who have kids the same ages and they have done similar things in their tiny homes and loved it.

I had already been putting ideas together on a pin board, back in late spring, figuring ways I might be able to use things I already had, yet add romantic, relaxing and cozy touches. 

I loved the idea of being able to retreat to a unique space with Adrain occasionally, and spend time being intentional as a couple, while our independence-loving kids venture off and do their own thing for short bursts of time.  (And don't get me wrong, we'll still spend plenty of time together as a family because that's a main priority over the next six or seven years.  Just saying.)

Above, you can see the BEFORE narrow space.  When I envisioned what this space might look like once I had reconfigured it, I had hoped to add some lighting that matched the fixture over our bed, a small television, place to sit, spot to put our feet up, and some task lighting. I did want to keep it simple and I felt like an nice way to make it cost effective, was do a little bit here and there as finances allowed, rather than one big room makeover.  That worked really well for us, though it took a few months from start to today's finish.  Patience always pays off.  What a nice lesson!
We have had to replace all of the roman shades from when we moved in 11 years ago little by little, as they broke, and the back window in our bedroom was the only remaining unbroken shade.  It broke in the spring, and I found the matching drapes from the other window in our bedroom and replaced those.  (From Target, ON SALE!) Then I tackled the light fixture, updating it with a bargain priced item from Lowes. (It matched the one over our bed from years ago.)  It added a bit of fun and I liked that.

My friend Nurse Nicki had given me the ampersand light as a gift last year, and the shelf was an existing item in this space.  I stumbled upon the antler art at the grocery store last month and knew I'd love it on the wall under this shelf. Sweet and simple. 
This foot rest spot was my favorite idea.  I always want a soft place for my feet but I didn't want to spend anything really.  I had the two sea grass poufs from Ikea, purchased a few years ago, and I used two of their $10 faux sheepskin rugs here- one for the floor and tossed one over the poufs.  It was the perfect solution!
We did purchase the small loveseat from Ashley Furniture (our one tiny splurge) and it came with the two cute pillows.  I may change them eventually since they are kind of scratchy textures, but for now they work just fine with the gray, tan, yellow and browns in our bedroom.  The linen ruffled lumbar pillow came from Ikea.
 Now this set up makes me happy.  My man needs his sports so though a simple reading nook would have been just fine for me... I knew a small television was a must and since it's pointed away from the bed, I felt it was a compromise I could handle. (grin) The television was thrifted, and all the other goodies were shopped from around my house. (Free!!) The small and narrow table stand was found for under $15 at Ikea and Adrain was the one who found it.  (Originally, I wanted a wall mounted contraption but this was way better and the cost didn't make Adrain's face get all red. Ha!)  Also, it's close enough to set your iced tea on if you're reading a book on the loveseat. Win-win.
  Personal touches with old favorite kiddo photos...
 The gorgeous vintage typewriter wall art is from my own shop and it's perfect in this space.
 I found a small sconce light that is perfect for reading, not to mention darling in every way.  It screwed into the wall but can also clip onto a surface.  It has gold hardware, a creamy shade and a black and white fabric covered cord.  Be still, my heart.

So there you have it... our new/old little cozy spot, adapted for this stage of life.  I believe in reevaluating what your family's needs are as seasons change, and then making sure you're using the space you have in the best ways possible.  (Though I've already caught a small girl who shall remain nameless, curled up on the loveseat with her book... )

Hmmm... that's not so bad either.  I can envision a few girls movie nights in that space when the guys want to watch boy things like baseball and Braveheart.

So do you have any spaces in your home that need tweaking or rethinking as the stages of life change?  I'd love to read about them in comments!

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  1. You've created a lovely space for you and Adrain. Welcome to the stage of motherhood parenting teens and tweens. From experience I know you will get ALOT of use out of this space. We turned part of our unfinished basement into a "teen cave" for our 16 year old son. With our old TV and a HUGE sectional from a friend we've made a sanctuary for him and his friends and a sanctuary for us from the noise and mess.

  2. Gorgeous! You really have an eye.

    I need to rethink everything right now. The kidlets have suggested bedroom moves (currently a castle and a rainforest,) which leaves the playroom free and our living room quite lonely. So, we are sitting back, trying to figure this all out.

  3. amazing space and great idea! wishing you many lovely evenings in there x

  4. The space looks fabulous. I have room in our master for a reading nook. Hmmm, maybe I need to go shopping in my house too! Enjoy it!

  5. You are so right! Andy and I have noticed these changes over the past few years, too.
    It's definitely an adjustment when your kids start going to bed later....for so many years, our kids were in bed by 7:30pm!! Not the case anymore!

    Beautiful space, Sasha...I know you guys will enjoy it!

  6. Simply beautiful! You took a small place and created the most charming, cozy nook - one of the loveliest places I've ever seen!! Seriously beautiful!

  7. I adore this space! Cozy and inviting. I would be there all the time! And seriously--those antlers are from your grocery store?!? What grocery store do you go to? ;)

  8. I LOVE this space, knowing I will be entering those years soon as well we are working on making a bigger area downstairs for the Teens and Tweens to play. They have the Wii and Xbox down there already but I know we will need to make it a bigger space as time goes on and we are working towards that. Exciting right, well and nerve racking all in the same breath. Thanks for sharing, it looks awesome and I love the couch. ~winks~ Have a great day. :-)

  9. Sasha, this turned out gorgeous! I love the sentiment of freedom with accountability. As I work on nesting this house I keep in mind places for the kids & their friends to hang out without me fussing about sofa pillows or crumbs on the rug. Its a huge challenge some days though. I love the idea of having a space to retreat to and you nocked it out of the park.

  10. Your nook is beautiful! Oh how I would love to have a bigger master bedroom! But I can't complain, when we added two bedrooms for our teenaged girls to have their own rooms, I gained their old room as a craft room. I squeezed in two vintage wing chairs and a little coffee table, and that is our space for when the girls are watching a video (mostly on Friday nights). However I have to say that this room sees a lot of action in the way of stuff coming and going, and sometimes there isn't much room for sitting! It's hard to keep the "craft" side of the room under control. I planned it so that from the hallway it looks like a sitting room, rather than a craft room, you have to walk into the room to see that all the other walls are covered with craft stuff! But I wonder whether by trying to make it multipurpose I actually made it less useful than having a dedicated craft room or a dedicated sitting room ... I'm sure your nook is much more restful to look on from the bed than your studio was, it will mae you feel relaxed!