This is Your House:: Is it Who You Want to Be?

My next house is going to be beautiful.  It might not be bigger but, my next house is the one I’ll really make into a home.  This house we are in now is just a holding room for us until we get to our next house. It’s ok that it doesn’t represent our family.  I’m renting, it’s a waste to make it pretty right now.  I don’t know how long we’ll be here.  I long to have a much loved haven for my family but, I don’t have the funds and those pictures in the magazines assure me that it’s impossible to even attempt to make a change where I am.  Yeah, I’m gonna love my next house. You’ll see.

How many of those lines have you repeated to yourself?  I’ve said them all.  And then I finally realized that there might not be a next house.

Love where you are.  Beautify where you are. Your next house will be great too but, wherever you are right now, today, has enormous potential.

Compared to your last house, this IS your next house.

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  1. i was a little concerned when i started reading this post. i wondered if something major had happened to you. THANKFULLY i got to the end and was reassured you are still fine. yes! it is a joy to take care of what one has, and be able to “make do” with gratitude. jkj

  2. I said this to myself in every house I have owned OR rented. Most recently, we rented for 5 years…my blog is called “house-finallly!” because we FINALLY bought our house… but I tell you what- sometimes I STILL do it. I have to check myself… constantly. Its a weird feeling, like nothing is permenant–but that shouldn’t stop us from living the life we want NOW, and living in the house that reflects us NOW. Well said in your post.

  3. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this post!! I really loved the comment your sister made as well. This post just made my morning!

    Thanks Nester! :)

  4. When we first moved in our house, we said we’d be here 10 years tops…hubby always said, after that…you are constantly putting money into something you might not get back. Well…it’s been a little more than 18 years, and we are still in that house. We’ve made many changes over the years, some to suit our needs, some cosmetic, some to keep up with the times. We stopped putting thing into our old house around the 10 year mark, because we always thought we’d move…we did, but I won’t make that mistake again…live in the here and now, and make your house a home wherever that may be. You are so right, this just might be the “next” house.

  5. I’m a career renter, there I said it. I live in the SF bay area, where you have to make some serious coin to own a home. We have always been one step behind the housing market, with no family or dead relative to help us out with the down payment. My husband makes a very good salary, but it is always the dreaded down payment. Even though we would be first time buyers, and not have to put down as much, it still is a lot out here. ANYWAY, reading your blog makes me happy.
    I have always known that I may not own a home, so every house I have ever rented is decorated and treated like it is owned by me.
    My dad not too long ago commented on how every time he visits us in a different rental, he is always impressed with what I do with it to make it a home.
    I’m a believer in using all your good dishes, using pretty towels and linens everyday, and fresh cut flowers all over the house. People really need to live for today. You can look at it like set decorating(like a movie) for your daily life, make it fabulous I say !! :)

  6. Thank you for putting it into such great words! IT is so true!

  7. So true!!!! Instead of Bloom Where You’re Planted, it’s Decorate
    Where You Are! I really need to do this! Sometimes I get to worried about keeping things neutral because of resale in the future. Thanks for the reminder!

  8. Such a wonderful perspective-we don’t even rent but still struggle with the imperfections of our home and the thought that we will be here much longer than we thought because of the housing market. That’s okay-it’s home NOW and I’ll embrace it as such!

  9. You are spot on! And, from all the other comments, it looks like there is so many of us who have this dialog running through our heads. Thanks for bringing us to the realization that you’ve just got to do the best with what you’ve got and BLOOM WHERE YOU’RE PLANTED!

  10. So very true. We aren’t exactly in our dream home either (far from it!). And, a month after we moved in one of my 6 month old twins finally came home from the hospital for the first time…with a tracheostomy, loads of medical supplies, and her very own homecare nurse. Even though she hasn’t had a trach for over 4 years, we still haven’t done much to this house, always assuming we would move someday. Unfortunately we are not in a financial position to move, so here we sit. And, I have been slowly de-cluttering and attempting to prettify our space to make this our home, despite its imperfections.

  11. You’re SO right, girl! I couldn’t agree more!

    In fact, come to think of it, you and some other gals inspired this same thought in my brain that I composed on my blog nearly one year ago…

    Thanks for the encouragement and all your fabulous ideas, I so enjoy my visits!


    ps – love the ‘deeper’ meaning you and your sis mused about above as well – today, indeed

  12. Nester, this so perfectly puts into words how many of us, especially us renters, feel. I have always felt like I couldn’t make my apartments really “me.” But now inspired by all the blogs we read, we have decided that this time we are going to do anything and everything we can to make our new rental townhouse ‘us.’ We moved in to it just over a month ago, but it is already feeling like home. Thank you for all the inspiration.

  13. preach it sister. when people come into my home they ooh and ahh about how pretty it is and how i already have curtains up even though we just moved. last year you got me on the i can do anything bandwagon and my house is warmer and happier because of it.

    it’s always a joy to show people the fabric hammered into my wall. they think i’m sheer genious.

  14. As I started to read this post, I thought “this so doesn’t sound like the Nester.” Then, I realized it wasn’t! Yes, I agree, love where you are. I often thank God that I’m not living in a dirt hut in a third world country. Thank you Thank you God. I love my house!

  15. So true! We need to live in the moments…because we don’t know if we get to the next!


  16. Nice perspective! It really is true. It’s a good reminder to enjoy and be happy with where you are no matter if it is the place you want to be.

  17. I have just been reading my Bible and another great book, “Lies Women Believe; and the Truth That Sets Them Free” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. Both
    scripture & this book has been challenging me about this: CONTENTMENT.

    I know is counter-cultural in our “need more” world to be content with what
    one has. As a woman I want to continually grow; spiritually, mentally, physically (not grow, just fit…ha!) and in other area of my life. Getting better
    as I get older. However, as with my material surroundings, I love to live in
    a beautiful atmosphere with my husband and four children. I love to create. But to look around and say, “I have enough” is where I want to be.

    Thank you for you wonderful blog!

  18. I can identify with your post too. What’s sad is…we do own our home…we’ve lived here for 7 1/2 years…and we don’t have any plans to move any time soon, but I still find these thoughts sneaking in. When we get our next house…when we get some money I will ___________…when, when, when. Or, what about those crazy ifs….if I knew how to sew, if I was better at choosing accessories, if I could find that throw pillow pattern I’ve been searching for… Thank you for encouraging me not to focus on the ifs and whens, but to start today. Hmmm…that has me thinking…what could I do today to make my home a little more beautiful???

  19. Very good and true post. We just don’t ever really know do we? I agree that we should make where we are a home. Everything we learn can go into the next home should we move.

  20. This post speaks to me. Glad I am not alone, we are in the same boat as you, renting and not sure when we can own our own home. You are truly an inspiration! I don’t let renting stop me from beautifying our home!



  21. So glad you posted this! We bought our home new about 8 years ago. I thought we’d be here for 5 years. We’re still here. The last 3 years, I’ve been stuck in the “next house” mentality, to the point thqt it has really gotten to me. My husband has started his own company, so we may realistically be here 2 years from now. I need to spend less time thinking about my “forever” home to come, and more time thinking about this one. Thanks, Nester, for the insight!

  22. I think I’m going to cry. That was beautifully said. I can’t believe that that is exactly me, with those words coming straight out of my mouth. Thank you.

  23. I was just saying something similar to this a few months ago to myself. For me it was not the thought that the next place would be better, it was the emotional pain to get attached to where I am in case we don’t stay. we had a habit of “staging” all of our homes because within a couple of years we were moving. But finally I just thought, it doesnt matter how long I am here, as long as I love being here. So, I just redid my family room and hung some of your fabulous mistreatments and am loving it!

  24. i am totally guilty of waiting for “the next one,” especially with homes. i have said that in every place that i have lived. i have gotten better with it lately, and am really making a home for us. now or never.

  25. Anonymous says:

    So true…I was guilty of that, too, especially back when I was a {starving} student. That is why I loved this article:
    It is not a question of funds, it’s a question of attitude
    Love your blog

  26. absolutely- be at home where you are! lately i’ve had to remember that i can (and should) take care of those parts of my home that we haven’t renovated yet- keep them clean, organized & even decorated. who knows if we’ll ever get around to renovating them, so why not fully enjoy them now?
    thanks for the great reminder… happy tuesday!

  27. This is a very great reminder since my family lives the military life style. It’s tough because we are renting now. I haven’t felt like I can make it mine. I will do my best though with this encouragement. Thank you!!

  28. Thank you. Wonderful insight, applicable on so many levels… just what I needed to read today!

  29. LOVE this – it does make an ENORMOUS difference in your quality of life (and that of your family, since we set the tones in our homes) to love where you’re at now. Great reminder!

  30. I struggle with this too. We also sold our house to get out of debt (dave ramsey style) and we’re currently renting a mobile home. Couldn’t be further from where we were. It’s very hard to decorate fake drywall. So there isn’t any painting going on here. But I’m doing the best to make this my home. But I have to agree our next house will represent who I really am.

  31. Nester, I have to tell you: I created a window mistreatment this weekend in my apartment and could totally hear you cheering me on! I wasn’t planning on hanging curtains in my bedroom since I wasn’t planning on being here very long. I needed some coziness in my bedroom, though, and got up the courage to “decorate”. I even hung up some empty picture frames and am searching from items in thrift stores (you are rubbing off on me!) that will call those frames “home”. Thanks so much for telling me it’s okay to try, tweek, and create my home right where I am.

  32. I wish someone had told me this when I was renting. I’ve been complaining since we bought our house that it still felt like we were renting b/c we hadn’t decorated anything. I moved into this house with nothing, because I kept saying that I would buy stuff that I loved when I bought a house. But there is no decorating fairy that comes in after closing with new furniture and pretty pictures. I’ve slowly been getting it together, but I wish I had bought furniture and accessories while I was still renting so I at least had something, even if it wasn’t perfect. Love you blog!! You’re a great inspiration!

  33. Thanks, I really needed this!

  34. You just spoke straight to my heart. I have said all of those things to myself….thank you for the inspiration. I definitely need to take this thought and put it into action in our master bedroom, where the curtains are just plain ugly and the walls are bare.

  35. This post was right on time for me…I really needed that boost. Thanks, Nester.

  36. I so needed to hear this. We temporarily downsized by 50% and are renting. I keep avoiding decorating because “we will be moving”… NO MORE!

  37. OK so were you reading my mind???

    We rent, we live in a city at the complete opposite end of the country to our family and our “next” house – a home we purchased, which we haven’t lived in!!! I know we will be here for another 18 months, and I am sick of the plain walls, outdated window treatments and impractical carpet!

    So despite my Husbands objections I have started to make this house somewhere I love to live !!!

    I bought a beautiful bright rug for my lounge room – found some great fabric to tie in and made new throw cushions for the sofa, picked up some “dust collectors” on the clearance table at Spotlight – and now I like this room.

    I have also “spruced” up our kids bathroom with ideas I found on some great blogs.

    And I discovered the 3m Commander Series of hooks and picture hanging hardware – no marks on my walls!

    This blog has been a huge inspiration too me to get up off my behind and make my surrounds beautiful!


  38. So true. “Bloom where you’re planted” . . . isn’t that how the saying goes?

  39. I used to have those negative thoughts about my home, which is rented too, until recently. Once I opened my eyes I realized how much I really loved this place. And now that I’ve put the time in and fixed it all up, everyone that comes over can’t stop talking about.

  40. testing, testing. 1, 2, 3.

  41. Love this post! We own our home and have lived here for 6 years and I am still living in someone else’s home for the most part. With my first home I knew it was only a starter home and that we would eventually grow out of it as we raised our family and move to something bigger. Our new home (well, not so new anymore) was the right size, right price but in need of some cosmetic updates. We purchased it because we knew we could do what we needed to do make it the home we wanted. Well, 6 years later it still is not, there has been improvements, but not nearly enough. When the kids go back to school at the end of the month that is all going to change and this post reassured my plan! The future holds brand new kitchens, baths and a finished basement but that is about 3 years out…I am not waiting, I am doing what I need to do now to be happy with what I have now and then welcome the changes when we can afford them.

  42. Love that song and this post. You taught me these things a few years ago and I have loved our house more ever since.

  43. Sherry Williams says:

    thank you for this today. this is something i have been working on right now in my home. my husband is in the Army. we move A LOT. We have rented apartments, houses, lived on military posts, and owned 2 of our own houses. my husband recently informed me that i might think each place doesn’t feel exactly like home–because i don’t allow myself to make it such. i never fully committ to settling in because i know i will be leaving again soon. i never fully put the time in to decorate it the way id love– sometimes simple things like hanging photos never happened (there were limits to holes in walls in one particular place)…i LOVE moving to each new place, and discovering what it will bring in the way of experiences, and new friends for our family– but i always regret that i didn’t do this or that with each home.
    we have lived in our current home for one year. this is a home we bought. it is very small for us, but in a good safe neighborhood. we will move in possibly another 2 years…maybe keeping it to rent or live in later. anyway..after all my babbling…i look at all the wonderful things you do with your home, and i am inspired to make my own feel the same for me and my family. it is ours NOW and we live in it TODAY, no matter what tomorrow brings…thank you for reminding me to do this. it really makes a difference. :) So far this summer, we have decorated one daughters room to include a beachy cottage look..and planted for a small garden beside the house. and i now have a list of things to work on, to help us make our home special while we are still in it. :)

  44. Great reminder…and I love Switchfoot, so I thought the title was pretty clever too!!!

  45. Good one!~song & post!

  46. Oh, I’ve been struggling with loving this house right now. It was not designed very well (no broom closet!), and we can’t afford to make any changes yet (can’t even afford to paint). So it’s been frustrating me. Thanks for this post. I needed the reminder to love this house.

  47. THANK YOU for this. I really, really needed to hear this. We rent, it’s too small for us, and don’t know how long we will be here. I’m always THINKING this, but then don’t want to end up putting the effort and money into anything – but I SHOULD!

  48. Oh how I needed to hear this. Today. While I sit not liking my house. But it’s mine, so I should love the one I’m with. Right?

  49. This post is sooooo true. We lost our house 5 years ago when I lost my job and it has been a long hard fought battle for us but we have slowly, and at times painfully made this house OUR house. We went from owning a house on property to buying a modular home in a park where we lease the land we have it on. It has been so difficult for us because we do not “own” the land. But you have to do as my 84 year old aunt says : ” Bloom where you are planted”. And she knows her husband was a self employed risk taker and in their 60 years of marriage she has lived in houses that have been 5,000 square feet and in homes that have been 760 square feet, and she has moved…. sit down…. 37 times in this time frame. Yet she always, always made the house she was in HER home. She taught me that it does not matter where you live or if it is your own, you must make it your own because you need to feel at home there for however long you live there. Thank you for reminding me to appreciate what I have and not always be looking over the other persons septic tank and wanting more.
    Blessings to you and yours Curtis & Sherrie

  50. Here, here! Very encouraging post, thank you. I’m learning to be grateful for the now and haves and ignoring the future and wants.

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