Designing Home

This week has been one big blogging high for me, from sharing my “happy,” to hanging out with Tamara, to today, hosting another one of my favorites, Kim, from Co-Pilot Mom

I love Kim’s slice of life anecdotes and the gentle reminders they give me to enjoy every moment of this beautiful, crazy, unpredictable ride of parenthood.  I love how Kim is not afraid to try new things, such as running.  I love her passion for life.  I love her photographs.  I imagine if Kim and I met for lunch, there would be a lot of smiling and laughing and nodding in understanding.  Kim always leaves us on a high note, which is one of the many things I adore about her.   

In honor of Kim, we’re serving up coffee and chocolate.  Any objections?


 “I just want to go home, Mommy.”

I heard the words in the dark tent as I shifted to get comfortable on the air mattress. His voice quivered as he spoke; he was crying.

It was a sticky Friday night – late.

It was our first camping trip of the summer; our first night tenting in the wooded campsite that would be our home away from home for the next two days. Captain Bravo has always been an excellent camper, but it had been 11 months since our last overnight adventure.

“Don’t cry,” I soothed. “We’re all here together. The first night in a new place is hard.”

It had been an exciting day. We had packed the car and set off. Captain Bravo had loved driving to the campground, setting up the tent, our supper at the picnic table and s’mores by the fire.

But now it was time to sleep. And the tent was not his room.

“I want my room. I want my bed.”

I am not much of a decorator – never have been.

As much as I love to look at a beautiful room or leaf through a design magazine, I just don’t have a knack for it.

Given the amount of HGTV I watched when I was up with Captain Bravo in the middle of the night, one would think that I might have assimilated some tiny creative spark. But design remains a mystery to me.

Captain Bravo’s bedroom has always been a room in our house that I have felt needed more pizzazz. It is simply decorated with a few pictures, a Mario poster, his dresser and a bookshelf. It’s not overly colouful or super-personal. The walls are a mushroom beige colour that clashes somewhat with the grey sports-themed bedspread and throw pillows.

I have thought about jazzing the space up for him, but have never gotten around to it. I am limited on both budget and ideas and there always seems to be some other project, some other mountain (of laundry) that needs climbing.

I have always thought of his bedroom as unfinished – and quite un-cozy.

Until that moment, that is.

Lying there in the dark on that stuffy night, I held his hand. I realized that he didn’t care that his bedspread didn’t match his wall colour, or that his decor wasn’t Pinterest-worthy.

He wanted his familiar walls, the warmth of his bed and the security of his home. He wanted the place where he plays I-Spy and flips through picture books. He was missing the soft pillows and the hum of his ceiling fan.

He doesn’t see the sparse. Or notice the clash. He feels the cozy.

He loves his home. I should love it more, too – even if it not magazine-ready.

While my life experiences do not include design training, I am still open to learning. And though I left school years ago, every day I am thankful that my children have so much to teach me.


Kim is an early childhood educator-turned stay at home mom. She is
co-piloting two young Captains in Nova Scotia, Canada, until they are
flying on their own. She always tries to see the glass as half-full, even
if it spills. She can usually be found near the coffee or chocolate.

How to find Kim:

On her blog:


Designing Home — 57 Comments

  1. Kim’s writing is so beautiful, and I find myself nodding my head as I read and thinking murmuring ‘Yes, yes.’ She just gets it! Love this post, especially since our house will NEVER be featured in a magazine or on HGTV (and I always have a mountain of laundry waiting for me too!). But it’s still our home, the place where we’re raising our girls, and a place they can always come back to.
    Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama recently posted…Old School Blogging – Fabulous FivesMy Profile

  2. Oh yay – I would never object to you two, or coffee or chocolate! We’re actually in the process this weekend of playing musical rooms – and all shifting one room to the right, or one floor up. While we think it’s so cool and tell the older one so – “BIGGER room! BIGGER bed!” It’s not the room she has had for nearly two years now since we bought this house. She’s very well-adjusted to new situations (very unlike me) but I’m very curious to how it will be for her to leave her “crummy, small, cluttered” (our words only) room.
    Tamara recently posted…Guest Post: Skin Deep.My Profile

  3. It is amazing how much my kids teach me. My youngest son is 4 1/2 and I’ve been wanting to put shelves up in his room since he was born. I can never find the right ones or we get too busy to think about it. I’m pretty sure he hasn’t noticed. 🙂 Beautiful post!
    another jennifer recently posted…Wordless Wednesday: Wet PuppyMy Profile

  4. Pingback: Home and Away - Guest Post at The Fierce Diva Guide to Life | Co-Pilot Mom

  5. I love Kim’s writing too! I’m terrible on home decorating too, but I am pretty sure my family doesn’t care. I think I’m the one who always wants to get that kind of stuff done. When you’re away, you realize how comforting it is to be home.
    Michelle recently posted…Best Buds {Wordless Wednesday}My Profile

    • I love having you here. Your words are lovely – they inspire me as always. And one day, let’s hear it for coffee and chocolate and lunch, IRL. xo

  6. This is lovely. I miss camping SO much. I used to spend entire summers going camping with my family. For me, camping DEFINES “cozy”. But it certainly did NOT the last time I went camping.

    The last time I went camping, I had just found out that I was pregnant with my first baby. It was a surprise, I was scared, I was hormonal, and I was feeling like crap. My parents were away, so they didn’t know, and all the girls backed out of the camping trip so it was just my DH and two other guy friends. I felt alone and sick and uncomfortable. I too just wanted my bed.

    I love that this camping trip made you love your home more! 🙂
    Laura at Mommy Miracles recently posted…In LimboMy Profile

    • We don’t have plans to move any time soon, but I am sure that there would be mixed emotions if that day comes. There is comfort and security in those walls, and it is sometimes hard to imagine somewhere else being “home.” Then again, sometimes my oldest will watch HGTV with me and ask about when we can move to a new house – which he believes should have a pool!
      Kim recently posted…Designing Home – Guest Post at The Fierce Diva Guide to LifeMy Profile

  7. My kids, my daughter in particular, have a love affair with their rooms. They love vacations, but they love coming home to their own space, in their own home. I hope they always feel that way about my home, even when they have their own.
    Dana recently posted…Just One of the BoysMy Profile

  8. Ooh, this is good. I need to learn to love my house. I need to learn to make it a home. This makes me wonder if my kids feel like it is home. I am not much of a decorator either. In fact everything from the curtains to the wall colors are exactly the same as they were when we moved in 9 years ago.
    AnnMarie recently posted…I Can’t Believe They Said That!My Profile

    • We’ve been in our house for 5 years now and some rooms still have the original paint and curtains, too – and I don’t have immediate plans to change them. I feel like it’s OK for now – and one day there will be time and opportunity for a change. That conversation in the tent helped me remember that the decor doesn’t rank highest on my list of priorities.
      Kim recently posted…Designing Home – Guest Post at The Fierce Diva Guide to LifeMy Profile

  9. I love the musical chairs this week! Love seeing Kim here. It’s funny because I am constantly thinking about how to fix/change/spruce up this part of the house or that part and my house never feels finished, even after living here for 8 years. But you’re right – I need to love my home because it’s so much more than just the decor. It always gets me when my boys say they miss home or when they are excited to return home after a trip. Lovely post Kim.
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted…On Teachers and Students (or How to Rationalize an Embarrassing Moment)My Profile

  10. Ilene – great choice having Kim over. Beautiful post. My kids have a lot to teach me also, especially in this area. Our house always feels cluttered and unfinished to me, but my kids only see its beauty and the fact that it’s our home. I have lots to learn. Good thing I have persistent teachers!
    Mary @ A Teachable Mom recently posted…Falling In Love With BoysMy Profile

  11. Great post. I love how it seems like it’s going to go one way and it goes in a completely different direction. My kids love their bedrooms too. Whenever they go with their dad, they bring something with them… this time The Girl brought a whole full-size blanket, to keep that little piece of home with them.
    Single Mom in the South recently posted…Friday Fragments: Road Trip(s)My Profile

  12. I never object to chocolate!

    This was so beautifully written. And incredibly true. I consume hours and hours of HGTV, but I don’t have a picture perfect home either. I’m OK with that though. I have a home full of love, and that’s all that matters to me.
    Kristen recently posted…10 things I’m afraid ofMy Profile

  13. Two of my favorite people in one place? Yes, please!
    I’m not much of a decorator either, Kim. It’s just in my nature. I’m creative in other ways, and while I don’t hate my decor (or lack thereof), I always have a desire to do more with it. But, it’s our home. That never changes. It’s our refuge and I know the boys feel that way to. What more could I ask for? Beautiful post!
    Adrienne recently posted…Old School Blogging-The Crazy FiveMy Profile

  14. Kim, I think you will come to my house and immediately recognize a fellow non-decorator. We have the basics, and nothing much. We border on minimalism – less clutter, less to clean is the mantra.

    You’ve made your house a home for your boys, even if Pinterest doesn’t approve. 🙂
    Alison recently posted…ConfessionsMy Profile

  15. Yep. I get this. I *am* a decorator and came home from Cali to find carpet ripped out, hardwood put in, and all of our furniture crammed into two rooms on the first floor of our house. After I stopped hyperventilating, I snuggled up with The Cherubs on the one couch remaining in the family room, amidst the grime, and soaked up every minute of home.
    Sue – The Spin Cycle recently posted…Let’s FEAST!My Profile

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