My wife and I are contemplating a small addition to our home. In the process we have worked through several reiterations we like or dislike, finally landing on an approach that may end up dropping in just over the budget fence in the left outfield. Never the less, it’s a target. We are pretty content with how the solution will improve our daily and seasonal routines.
Then, this week I was asked to meet with a client in her home to provide direction on some of their home organization needs. Although not complete, their kitchen was simply beautiful, very comfortable and very new. It reminded me of a vignette I toured on the LuxeHome floor in Chicago’s Merchandise Mart. A brief wave of lust came over me and challenged the direction we were headed in with our own project. If ever you have ever attended a Parade of Homes Show, I’m sure you can relate. I noted how easily the peaceful boat I was in had been rocked by the wake of another.
After some commute time contemplation, I concluded this. What initially seemed like a different green pasture only served as a tool to reinsure that what we are doing for our needs is the most appropriate. Remembering the emotive “wow” reaction I had in Chicago was like using a calculator to check my math. I mentally went back through our criteria and confirmed that the “pilings under our pier are solid.” Although many of the homes I am in are easily places I could spend a lot of time, they are not solutions that address our specific life-stage or lifestyle.
(1963 “mini van”… perhaps more appealing then
today’s option, but would it serve as a good primary car?)
I once read the notes from a sermon on relationships that said “love is like a plant in your garden… it’s either growing or dying”. I fear that our quest for growth can sometimes be misinterpreted as greed or discontent. Sometimes there is no confusion about it… it is just greed and discontent but, perhaps as healthy humans, it’s good to strive for growth and improvement. Perhaps It’s actually a good thing to find motivation in alternative perspectives because sometimes it confirms your own.
As fiscally responsible homeowners and good global citizens, we can be inspired by others ideas and abilities, but we must remain focused on acts of design and it’s results that express who we are and what we value. As designers, architects, organizers and builders we must remain committed to the client, and strive for understanding their true needs and goals.