Over the last few months, I’ve received comments from people who assumed I was some sort of an environmental-focused blog. I haven’t been able to come up with a tagline that encompasses the things I like to write about and “A Blog About Everything in My Head” doesn’t seem particularly helpful. Before I kick off another novel writing session, I thought I’d give you a little insight to the actual green study.
My husband bought this ranch house in suburbia long before I came into the picture. He’s very responsible that way. When I moved in, primer was the house decor. I love color – lots and lots of color. It’s taken me a few years of living in this state to realize that many Minnesotans like white/creme/tan variations. I embarrassed myself at a housewarming party once, when I asked the hostess what color she was going to paint her new condo. It had already been done. Lesson learned: Don’t go to parties in condos.
Every room in the house is a different color now, much to my Scandinavian husband’s chagrin. Green is my favorite color – practically all shades of it, depending on context. My study is sage green which is supposed to be supportive of mental clarity. I’m no scientist and with my limited control group, I cannot provide proof of that idea.
I have one of those large, modern (read ‘pressed wood’) desks that I am not particularly fond of, and an office chair that I was kindly given when my employer moved offices. It’s a fancy chair and I still don’t know what the knobs on the right do. Sometimes when I sit on it, I don’t know if it’s shrinking away in fright, but it will randomly deflate and I have to use the other knob on the left, in order to see above my desk.
On the wall above my head, I have shelves with a bamboo plant and a wood carving of a woman in meditation (I originally typed “medication”, but that would explain her calm pose as well). Above, I have a print of “Milkmaids, Novella” by Nikolai Nikolaevich Baskakov. The ability to laugh with each other, no matter what the circumstances, is a great life lesson.
Next to that, I have a picture of my daughter in what I think of as her orangutan days. She is 4 months old with a shock of jet black hair sticking straight up. She came out like that. My mother-in-law, who often draws incorrect correlations (it’s part of her charm) kept saying that my daughter looked a lot like my brother-in-law when he was a baby, with that dark hair. It was an awkward moment for all involved. While my husband tends toward the blond, I (the mother of said orangutan baby) have dark hair.
I have 3 bulletin boards: Inspiration, Kid Art and Stuff I’m Supposed To Do. My inspiration board is almost empty except for this emailed picture that says “Grammar: The difference between knowing your shit and knowing you’re shit.” My kid art board is covered with origami flowers and little notes that started showing up when my daughter figured out that writing “I love you, mom” might mean that I wouldn’t yell as loudly when I saw her ransacked bedroom. My taekwondo belts hang nearby – a reminder that age is not a barrier and that the cerebral should be balanced with a little ass kicking.
I have a floor-to-ceiling bookshelf, compulsively organized by subject and size. Linguistics, writing and reference books on the top. Physical fitness, nutrition, nature and gardening books up against religion and philosophy texts. Tech, music and domestic how-to manuals on the bottom. I love my books, but it has taken me years to teach myself to stop collecting them, to sell them back, to use the library. Book ownership feels like wealth to me. I just have to remember they lose their value when I don’t read them or won’t read them again.
The true jewel in this room is the green reading chair. It’s a big, comfortable chair, a cleverly disguised recliner where I’ve spent hours reading, snuggling with my daughter, snoozing as sun pours through the south window. A small table sits beside it, ready for a cup of coffee and grab of my latest read. I’ve just started reading Things That Are by Amy Leach, a collection of essays on nature and wonder.
The Green Study, both the room and the blog, have evolved to become more reflective of my desires, beliefs and priorities. Thanks for letting me share them with you. Here’s hoping you find space, cyber or otherwise, to call your own.