When you’ve lived in a house for 22 years, you realize that changing the decor only lasts for so long. The green sponge painted laundry room that I was so proud to have completed just a few years ago is now dated and depressing. So is the bathroom with the striped wallpaper and duck border done when the kids were small with them in mind. I’ve painted the same hallway and living-room walls at least five times, and in other rooms, I’ve put up and removed wallpaper on the same walls several times.
I’ve finally realized that I should either spend very little money to be trendy, so it doesn’t kill me to change our home’s decor in 3-5 years or purchase quality pieces in a traditional style that will never go out of fashion. Where am I right now? A mix of both and lots of Craigslist finds. Heck, we’re at the spot in our life when we have to start thinking about selling and moving to retire elsewhere, so we can no longer decorate just for ourselves, we have to think about resale.
Lately, I’ve been looking at our main bathroom. The only update we’ve done in there is replacing the floor (twice in 22 years and it’s in desperate need of replacement yet again) and the bathroom sink fixtures. That’s it. It has the same Formica countertop from the 70’s (yes, the photo above is my bathroom, I can’t believe I’m posting it here).
At some point, we need to pull out the builder-grade cabinet and mirror and replace it with something else. We’ll also have to decide what type of bathroom sink to go with. Vessel sinks are so popular now, but after using one a few times, they seem like they’re designed for their looks and not their function – I seem to get water everywhere when I use one. I’m more of a practical person, so I’m leaning towards an under the counter mounted sink for easier cleaning. And because we have to appeal to a broad set of buyers in the not-so-distant future, we’re going to have to go with neutrals instead of the brighter colors we have now in the rest of the house.
Whatever we end up doing, it won’t be for a while. We have a master bedroom to redo (last done in 1989) and a sewing room to create out of our older son’s former childhood bedroom. I love that this house has changed and adapted to our family over the last two-and-a-half decades – we moved here when the boys were two years old and two months old and I was just twenty-seven. Now I’m staring my 50th birthday in the face and the boys have moved out and started their own lives (even though they promised many times as small children that they’d never grown up and they’d never move out – liars!).
Our starter home is now possibly our retirement home or the house that will help fund our retirement. And while our house may be outdated to those looking in, it’s been a fantastic family home that’s filled with loving memories, but that only makes it valuable to us.