Slowing Down

Slowing Down | The Urban Pig

Lately, I have been proving myself wrong in many ways, mostly in the sense of my personality differing from what I have always described it as. I have always been a planner, and I still am in some ways, like with long-term goals. But this year seems to be a time of quick decision making, such as moving back from Denver, moving into a rental home (photos from around the house), starting my own business, and more. It’s been a lot of excitement, but at the same time it has left me in a state of mind where I feel like I have no idea what I am doing. I haven’t had the much needed time to digest each decision and really take in what is happening. It’s been kind of a scary thing for me! Luckily, everything is working out fine so far; my mind just needs to take some time to catch up with what my body is doing. I know how important it is to enjoy the journey of life events such as these and I really want to have that appreciation for the present time in which I am living.

After coming to this realization, I have definitely been able to clear some of the doubts in my mind. Those doubts like, “should I really follow through with this business thing?” (only because our income was a bit less than we wanted it to be to save for a house, then I realized it was definitely worth it), or “maybe we should just buy a house rather than build…” (again, I realized it will be worth it!). These doubts tend to creep up when I am exhausted and stressed like I had been the last few weeks. Once I had a tiny bit of time to sit and think and discuss them with Connor, we realized anything worth doing is not going to come easy, or quickly for that matter. So I decided not only is it time to slow down and give myself the opportunity to fight my fears rather than trying to suppress them, it is also time to slow down and see how far we have come and be okay with the fact that some things just take time! I am working hard mentally to change that timeline in my head that says I need to start building a house this year and have a fantastic business at the same time. Of course it is dreamy to think about, but really not practical in reality. All we can do is work toward those goals and in time, they will be achieved.

Slowing Down | The Urban Pig

Slowing Down | The Urban Pig

In the meantime, there is always so much to be thankful for, we just need to soak it in and count our blessings, even the small ones. There will be a time to stress about the happenings in life, and it is easy to get caught up in trying to keep up with everyone around you. But remember to take a deep breath every once in a while, focus on yourself and do the best you can.

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The Road Home

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

While I love the idea of settling down, there is always something exhilarating about a change of place. Connor and I made the decision to move to Colorado in a matter of days. We were flying by the seat of our pants and it worked out well. We were incredibly blessed to have the support that we did, but people did think we were crazy when we told them the story of our courageous trip here with just one suitcase and a toolbox. I loved that adventure of the unknown, despite that I am usually a person who likes to feel in control of life. But, after four years of being disciplined in school, I guess it was only right for me to need such a drastic change of pace.

The story of us choosing to leave Colorado to move back to our hometown happened as quickly as it did when we chose to move here in the first place. I guess it was one of those things that you get a seed planted in your head and all of a sudden it is blooming. I wonder if maybe subconsciously I was thinking of another adventure the whole time. Or maybe, as much as I wanted to settle down in Colorado, I never felt like there was such a thing as settling down without being near family. It had been a hard realization to come to, but it made me that much more excited to be on my way to see them.

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

Last Thursday, we signed the closing papers to sell our house, packed the moving truck, and began the long drive back to Washington. We never stopped driving except to fill up the gas tank, buy snacks, and use the restroom. In a regular car, the drive is about 18 hours, but with the moving truck and our car in tow, it took about 21 hours. We drove the whole time, no stopping at hotels. We were hoping to stop in the northern part of Wyoming around midnight, but all of the hotels were booked (this happened when Connor and I came to Colorado!). We had no choice but to keep driving. I am so thankful Connor’s step dad came with us; him and Connor were able to switch off driving and taking broken, crappy-car-ride naps. Still, I was so nervous to keep driving, as we saw about 6 dead deer on the road, and I counted at least another 4 running near the road. In fact, we ran over one that was already dead, and it tore off the back bumper of my car.

I finally fell asleep around 3 in the morning, for about an hour or two, and then woke up to the most beautiful sunrise. The sky and mountains and fields were blurred shapes of pastel colors. It was the most amazing, peaceful way to wake up, despite being cramped and sleep-deprived. I loved watching the landscape change, throughout the time we were driving from sunset to sunrise and through each state. We saw rolling fields of green, mountains, and then we knew we were getting close to home as we began to see pine trees so tall they seemed to touch the sky. It has been so long since we have seen those and smelled the scent of the forest. I remember laughing at my friend who moved to Colorado from Spokane, saying she missed the trees. I didn’t think that could be possible or that big of a deal. It is. I am a woman of the woods.

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

The Road Home | The Urban Pig

Pretty dramatic change of scenery, right? I kept thinking to myself, how could I have ever taken this beautiful land for granted? How did I ever get tired of seeing the forests and the mountains and the blue skies? The only way I can describe my experiences is just saying it feels like a time warp. It feels like spending a year in Colorado was a small blip, or hiccup in time. It feels like I was there, but it also feels like I wasn’t. It feels like I have been here in Washington all along, despite having some memory of what it was like in Colorado. It feels like I am home again, and although it has taken a couple of days to feel that, I can say that with confidence now. I am so happy to be breathing this air full of pine and dirt, hearing the birds outside my window, and having my family in my arms and giving my sweet little nephew a million kisses and hugs. Those simple little moments mean the world and I am so happy to have them back.

Heading Back to the PNW

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Well everyone, big news lately in our house. We are moving back to Washington. It’s been an easy decision, but at the same time, really tough. We are going back because we miss our family so so so much, but it is definitely hard for me to leave my amazing job that I love every day. It’s just one of those things though where once you come to the realization of something, it opens up the flood gates and you can’t get it out of your head. In fact, the feelings and thoughts come harder and stronger. That’s how it happened for Connor and I when we started talking about it. It turns out, we both had been thinking about moving back for a long time before we said anything to each other. When the discussion began, both of our minds were already made back and we realized it had to be done. Months and months ago, I wrote something about it. I was scared to even admit it to myself…

Processed with Rookie

Processed with Rookie

“It’s time to speak truth and to face my fears of saying it. I feel if I say it out loud it will become reality and truth. But how is it not, even if it is only in my head? The truth — homesickness and nostalgia. I miss the northwest. I miss my family. I miss the trees, the rivers, the lakes, the forests. I miss the escape I had from the city. I don’t wan’t to go back to that city, but I want to go back to the escape.

I miss the smell of the leaves and pine needles in the fall. It was a smell I had forgotten, until I recently ran across a bag of pine needles. It brought me back to that place. I miss the quiet of the forests. I feel so far away from that now. And I am.

I often dream of living in the forest or countryside someday. I don’t know if that exists here. I thought I was a city girl until I came to the city and had nowhere to run. There is no escape, no place of peace, at least not one I have found.

Am I happy here? I think so. I only feel nostalgia for something I once had. But it breaks my heart to think I may never have those things again. I am trying to find here in Colorado what I want back from there. There are so many things I love about this place, but the forests and water are something I never realized was such a big part of me. How did I not know that before?”

Processed with Rookie

Processed with Rookie

It is crazy what you take for granted sometimes. I am very happy to be going back to Washington, the place I once called home, and still feel in my heart that it is my home. I will definitely miss what I have grown to love here in Colorado, but after a lot of thinking, I know what I am doing is the right choice. I have been so blessed with the experiences and opportunities I have had during my time here. Connor and I bought our first house, we both had amazing jobs, I had a boss who truly took me under his wing and taught me so much, along with some awesome co-workers and neighbors who were great friends. We have been able to see and do so much, some of my favorites being Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, Rock Park and the antique stores in Castle Rock, the Reservoir, and of course the amazing Park Meadows mall and IKEA.

I definitely look forward to spending time with our families, holidays, being at the lake, Greenbluff, and crinkle-cut fries with fry sauce (why does no one have that here!?). But until next week when we pack up the moving truck and head back to the Pacific northwest, I will be savoring the last of our time here in Colorado.

Bedroom Makeover

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

It took us a while to really get going on our bedroom, because I guess the main floor seemed more important, or other rooms were in worse shape. But the outcome of our personal space made me wonder why we hadn’t started sooner. It’s like a retreat from the world and it has a calming feeling that relaxes me right before sleep. It’s perfect.

It took us a few tries to get the paint right. And by a few tries, I mean 5. All except one of these tries we were smart enough to get the little sample size paints, the other time, we were dumb enough to buy 5-gallons of a color that turned baby-blue (Next time, I will think twice about buying the clearance mis-tints). The color we ended up with though is pretty dynamic; it changes a lot with the all the natural daylight in the room. During the day, it is a light grey, bright and neutral. At night, it darkens and feels like I am being wrapped in a cozy blanket.

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

We worked hard to find savings for this room, as we hadn’t really budgeted much for it besides the cost of paint. We got all of our bedding on Black Friday from Target, we got clearance curtains at IKEA for $4.99 each, and we did a lot of research for the best price on a new mattress and bed frame. We kept our nightstands and lights from our previous apartment, and we plan to refinish our dresser. I’d say it pulled together pretty nicely. But before I show you the final product, ready for the “before”?

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

The bedroom was painted dark brown (like the rest of the house) and it made the giant room feel small and closed in, despite the vaulted ceilings. We knew from seeing the previous owner’s furniture that a tall bed also made the space feel small. There was a ceiling fan, but no lights. Overall, it just felt dark and small.

We chose a color that reflected the natural daylight and emphasized the tall ceilings (they go up to like 13′-0″!!). Later, we might add a painted high-gloss white wood ceiling. A low bed gives the ceiling more room to breathe. Bright white curtains draw your attention to the window and light and really help to brighten the space. We  plan to change the ceiling fan to one with a light to get better lighting. We still need to hang some art as well.

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Bedroom Makeover | The Urban Pig

Mudroom Makeover

Mudroom Makeover

We have been on a bit of a pause working on our house the last week or two; rejuvenating our ideas and spending time with family this last weekend. I must admit, it was a pleasant break from the house, and I might continue to take advantage of stepping back from the work to think through our next steps for our home. Connor and I finally got netflix, so between watching our favorite tv shows, and planning some adventures to get outside, our home has been on the back-burner a bit. We were actually out looking to purchase bicycles, when we stopped by Goodwill, and found a beautiful solid wood dresser for just $60. We snagged it up to use for our front entry. The area isn’t quite set up yet, but to get the existing furniture out of the way, we moved it to the back entry/mudroom and spent some time working there. It’s not how I imagine it in the future when it is complete, but it is 100 times better than having a bare room (how it was just yesterday), even if it is just temporary.

Mudroom Makeover

Mudroom Makeover

Mudroom Makeover

Mudroom Makeover

It’s funny how furniture can change just based on the room it is in and the combination of items it is with. I have been pretty unhappy with our front entry, which held the same chair and cubed shelving. Moving it to the back entry gave it a whole different look, but I’m not exactly sure why. It makes me happy to see the spaces evolve and come together.

Mudroom Makeover

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