Because Choosing Your Battles Saves Your Sanity :: How Having One Decent Space Makes all the Difference

night stand

The first room in our house that was kind of livable/done-ish was our bedroom.

I knew we’d be knocking down walls (they were knocked down in the kitchen before we even moved in) and living without a sink or stove or ceiling in the kitchen. We needed a place where we could close the door and pretend like the mess didn’t exist. When you move to a new place it’s so nice to focus on one space where you can quickly feel sane and at home.

Even today, our room still doubles as my office. We (Chad) just finished painting the barn and office exterior (photos coming soon!) and my office has been taped up with plastic and no air conditioner all summer. Right now that dinky window unit is looking pretty great.


It’s not fancy and it’s hardly organized or sanitized with three kittens a dog (and did I mention the mouse?!). But one trick I’ve learned that helps keep me un-crazy-fied is to keep my floor picked up and free of clutter and random hairballs. It does wonders for any space.


My mom (who has an impeccably clean house) always says “If the floors are clean then the whole house is clean.”


I also try to always evaluate what is working for me. For months I had this desk in our room. And then I made a discovery. I had never, not once sat at this desk and done one thing. And also, the desk only looked clean and tidy like this that one time when I took this photo. Yes, I used it to hold all sorts of piles and the chair was the perfect place to hang sweaters, but this desk just served as a great place to put stuff “for now”.

That desk was helping me keep my room messier! So as much as I love the desk itself, I cleaned it off…

real desk

…and we moved it out. It sits in the basement now, but I’ll use it in the barn in a few months.


Clearly, all of my problems aren’t solved. But this photo was taken yesterday when I was in the heat of two days of doing a little photo shoot that took over our entire house, a Christmas photo shoot for a company where I needed to pull out Christmas decorations, send in photos, then wait to clean everything up until the photos were approved. My house was in a half mess/half Christmasy holding pattern for 48 hours. But even I have standards…

hall mess

Here’s the hall outside our room…


There was an imaginary barrier at the threshold of our room. I knew from experience that I needed to have one calm space where even if I had to have a mess that looked like Christmas threw up in our hall, I’d have one uncluttered space to retreat to.

Here’s more of the mess from my instagram, click the play button to see the little video (& there’s music).
wherever you are
I’m trying to remember to start where I am, with what I have, and to sometimes do the least amount required to avoid catastrophe. So while my blinds might be dusty, my bedroom floor is clean and tidy. Because sometimes you decide to know thyself and choose thy most important battles.


God, grant me the serenity to accept the dust I forget to chase ,

The courage to clean the things I trip over,

And the wisdom to know the difference.



Sometimes (every time) we have to choose the easiest road to rest. For me that means dusty blinds and at least one uncluttered floor, preferably in our bedroom.

for you

A Giveaway

I’m so grateful for companies that partner with Nesting Place, who give me free rein to show my imperfections. Today, you have a chance to win a great little helper in your home. Dyson, who basically has a cult following for their innovative technology–for vacuums is sponsoring this post. Thanks Dyson!


One person will receive a Dyson DC59 Motorhead it sounds like a fancy car but this is the latest “digital” slim cordless (!!) vacuum. Who cares about the blinds, let’s clean the floors and forget about the rest! Oh wait, I think this thing cleans the blinds too!

254_5c3ffe3ae7366882d6cf39c7c208d2d7(white uniform, empty, clean white home and vehicle not included please insert your own colored clothing and possessions that need vacuumed)

WINOne rule to enter to win, pop over to the Dyson DC59 Motorhead site (it will open in a new window), scroll through the info and then come back here leaving a comment what feature would be the most useful for you and what space in your home you try to keep the most sane–and then you’ll be entered!

Winner chosen August 18th, prize value: a cool $549.



  1. Cordless! Because the dog hair tumbleweeds end up at the far ends of the house!

  2. Carpet, and hardwood and stairs, oh my! We’ve got ’em all.

  3. I love that it’s cordless!!!!!!! Because I have stairs that are very hard to vacuum with my upright. And the place in my home that I try to keep the most sane is my living room. I mean it’s the first room guests see when they enter my apartment.

  4. Love that it is light and cordless! I try to keep my kitchen clean…somehow knowing that it’s not a mess helps me sleep better at night. :)

  5. Cordless! And hardwood/carpet. I vacuum up so much dog hair on a daily basis our dog should be bald by now!

  6. Microscopic dust capturer for allergy and asthma friendly air! Our bedroom is my sanctuary although at the moment I am embracing the glorious mess that it can sometimes become.

  7. I have hardwood and carpet – check. Allergies – check. Stairs – check. Dirty car – check.
    I have had five back fusion surgeries and one knee replacement with the second one happening next month, so “cordless and light” has to be the best feature for me!!

  8. We live un a dry dusty desert so anything that claims to pick up microscopic dust is a winner in my book!!

  9. lightweight and without a cord … too good and dreamy for this mom of four kids!

  10. Ummmmm, compact and packs a powerful punch. We have small a small space and stairs and wood and tile and carpet. This things stores small but cleans all. And who wouldn’t want a pink vacuum??

  11. I am a pregnant mom of a toddler, so a cordless, whip-it-out and vacuum under the table…in the car…dreamy! Love love love the dusty blinds shot. Could be my house!

  12. Looks like this thing really sucks. I need something less weighty than the old clunker to do my stairs.

  13. Heheh… I was wondering before I read this post why it had so many comments. Not that it isn’t awesome, because it is! But a giveway… that’s why!

    I would LOVE this vacuum for the cordless capability. I have 2 boys – 2&1/2 and 1 year. AND… I’m pregnant with our third (due in April). I really need this vacuum so I can do quick clean ups throughout the day.

  14. I loooooove that it was a max power setting, for those times when you have a crafting emergency and there’s glitter everywhere, or your dog decides to shred an entire box of tissues and bits and pieces are now living so deep in your rug you don’t know when you’ll stop seeing tissue particles around your house. Is that just me? Probably. I would use this thing to keep the living room tidiest because it’s the first thing I see when I walk into the house and it feels great when it’s tidy!

  15. Love everything you did. Do you have a source for the white side table with the baskets?
    I would love to know where you purchased it.
    Thanks so much.

  16. I love how lightweight the vacuum looks and of course loving the cordless feature! I try to keep our living room clean, since it’s also my sons play area. I really hate clutter. Our place is so small, it’s easy to maintain in order.

  17. We are an allergy house, so I love that it has all of the dust and allergy-fighting abilities of a regular Dyson in a small package! And that it can be easily emptied (great for avoiding putting the dust BACK in the air after vacuuming). :)

  18. Dyson helps allergies, cordless helps the one cleaning!

  19. Absolutely agree! We never have enough time to keep everything clean and tidy. Okay, at least I don’t. :) Also, very nice giveaway!

  20. I wonder what color that accent wall is in the bedroom? I LOVE IT! Thanks!

  21. I would also like to know the color of the wall in the bedroom. It is beautiful!

  22. I NEED to know where you got that circular shag rug.. its beautiful and unexpected, and placed perfectly, i would have never thought to do that. <3 Much love

  23. I love your beside lamps! We live in Australia and I have been trying to find something similar here, do you know where you go yours or what they are called to help me try and chase something down that would work for us. Thanks so much!

  24. Krissy Durbin says

    Where is your light shade (ceiling) from – I’d love it in my room?

  25. Stephanie M says

    What colors is the accent wall? Love it!

  26. Where did you get that circular gray area rug?

  27. Cordless, because the cherios grow feet in the middle of the night and get themselves into unexplainable places.

  28. What color is your accent wall? Thank you!

  29. Lyndsey Steiner says

    Hi! Can you tell me what color your accent wall is? I appreciate it!

  30. What color is the accent wall??? I love that dark color!

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