As I await the arrival of the perfect spring day, I decided to create a couple of pretty spring printables to share with you. We’ve been gradually updating our home, one room at a time, painting and replacing some of the carpeting and floor covering. We still have a ways to go, but we’ve actually made great progress. I’ve always been quite content with the “old” stuff that we have had around for many years, but the truth is, most of it is getting pretty thread-bare and tattered. Even some of the pictures and other wall hangings that I’ve had for many years, are really looking quite shabby. Which I suppose is OK if you are going for the “shabby chic” look, but lately I’ve been feeling like I need a change to something less “vintage” looking and perhaps a bit more of the current trend in “minimalism.”
I’ve always been a bit of a “minimalist” in that I’m not a hoarder and I don’t like a lot of stuff sitting around, but I’ve always found the vintage touch quite endearing. I still do in many ways, but for some reason, I just want to pass along some of the older (but still really pretty!) stuff and try something new. As we’re able. So the way we do this whole home update project is one step at a time. So for instance, we painted the master bathroom (after the flood last autumn that completely destroyed the new flooring we had just put down), and completely replaced the sub-floor and put down new flooring (for a second time). Since that was a rather HUGE expense that we weren’t planning on, we held off doing anything else for a while.
Just the past few weeks I felt like I could begin to replace some of the towels and washcloths in that bathroom . . . . so I bought two bath towels, two hand towels, and two washcloths. Then, the following week I was able to buy two more of each. One week I bought a new shower curtain. One baby step at a time! It won’t be long and all those faded, old, tattered bath towels will be gone – well, they will be out in the garage to be used when we start our next paint project.
Another thing that had to be replaced (sooner than originally anticipated) was the light fixture over the kitchen island. The one that was there was old and looked rather 70s-ish, but there was nothing wrong with it (I thought) and it was OK. Not at the top of my list of things to replace very soon. Until my husband discovered that some of the electrical stuff inside the base was falling apart. Whatever that means. So he declared that “This light has to go! It could start a fire!” So down came the light over the island in the kitchen and there we were without a light for couple of weeks until we had the money to buy a new one.
Well, that day came, and we went to Home Depot to buy a new light fixture, but that didn’t turn out so great. Fashion Diva and Home Decorating Expert, Oldest Daughter, was determined that we should get the most expensive, fanciest, and most audacious light fixture in the store. Which mama didn’t like (at all!) and daddy refused to spend that much money on a light fixture, so we ended up with one that we all liked (kind of). We brought it home but it was too long from top to bottom and would hang down way too low over the island once installed. So, another two weeks without a light over the kitchen island.
This past weekend we had time and enough money to look for a different light fixture, and this time it was just mama and daddy shopping. Oh my heart! It was a rather pleasant experience, actually, when I wasn’t walking around Home Depot just about on my last nerve from all of the chatter about this one and than one, and we have to have this amazing one, and that one looks stupid, and all of the annoying things that teenagers say because they have no clue what they are talking about. We found one that coordinates with the first one we purchased but it fits in that particular location much better – and so we put the first one in the entry way which we had also painted last summer and had planned on replacing the light fixture out there eventually anyway. It fits perfectly, and so now we have two new light fixtures. It only took two months to figure that out!
In the meantime, I am reminded of how important it is for all of us to use our words to encourage one another. To be kind is not an expensive or difficult thing to do. But it makes such a big difference in the lives of everyone around us, and actually it makes the world a better place. So, when I thought I was on my last nerve with the Home Decorating Expert with the endless commentary on why we needed the MOST expensive and elaborate light fixture in the whole world (well, not the whole world but at least in that whole, entire Home Depot store!), I simply decided to walk down another aisle and look at something else for a while. I dodged that opportunity to speak words that would perhaps break a heart or at least make one clueless teenager a bit ticked off for a minute or two. Instead, I chose to focus on something else until I could come up with words that would explain the situation, firmly and yet kindly, and eventually we were able to accomplish the goal of buying a light fixture. In the end, we bought two light fixtures, but now we all like them both, and I am grateful that I didn’t speak unkind words.
Here’s my motto about how we use our words, which I have impressed upon my girls (and I hope they remember this long after I’m gone): “Just because something pops into your brain does not mean it needs to fall out of your mouth!” First, be kind. That’s just a good way to live life. First, be kind. That is all. So to help us all remember to use our words to encourage and bless others, I’ve put together these printables that I am going to print out and frame for our house. A few new wall hangings to replace those shabby, old “vintage” ones that are heading to the local thrift shop. Maybe you could use a bit of springtime encouragement in your home too. Here you go!
If you would like to print out any of these designs, they are FREE for you to use on your personal blog or website, or to print out for your art journal or other creative project. Please link back here to Vintage Mama’s Cottage if you use them on your blog or website. Please do not copy and sell my designs, but you are free to use them for any personal projects. Just right click on the image and “save as” to your computer. That’s all you have to do, and then use them wherever you want. Have fun!