Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Not selfish enough?

Let me start by saying that I love home furnishings. Absolutely. Love. Them. I could spend all day in an awesome home store (Crate and Barrel, or Ikea - - for example) fantasizing about how my perfect home will look. If I won the lottery today, you'd find me first thing in the morning at one of those stores mentioned above. Before a house, before a car, before pretty much anything else. As a matter of fact, I'd be more likely to buy the furniture before the home. Then, I'd have to plan my home around my furniture, but that's okay. I love making a house (or an apt. in my case) a home. I love how it feels to walk into a nice, clean, well decorated, yet still homey, house after a long day of errands. I spend a good part of my time at home decorating sites, looking for new ideas that inspire me.

Decorating is part of my soul. In fact, if I could go back and do one thing differently with my life (and still have everything else turn out exactly the same) I would go to school for interior design. Still might, actually.

Now why, you ask, have I rambled on senselessly about this. Well, it has come to my attention that my love for all things homey, is being looked at as almost a . . . flaw. . . I guess, to certain people in my life.

For Christmas, I was told to compile a list of stuff I would like. Well, I thought the easiest thing to do would be to go online, pick a few of my favorite (and easily accessible) stores, and create wish lists. Well, after spending the afternoon making sure I had a wide variety (and wide price range) of stuff, I emailed my lists off to the appropriate people.

A couple days later, I received a phone call that went a little something like this. . . .

MIL: "I just got your Christmas list, are you sure that's all you want?"

Me: "I thought the list I sent out was pretty huge, but hey, if you want me to add more, I have no problem doing that. I just didn't want to look greedy!"

MIL: "Well, no that isn't what I mean exactly. I was looking over your list and there isn't anything on it just for you. Isn't there anything you want that is purely selfish?"

Me: "Actually, everything on that list is stuff that is purely selfish. It's stuff we don't need, and stuff I can't justify getting right now. No matter how much my heart yearns for them!"

MIL: "Well, yeah, it's not stuff you need, but it's stuff for your apartment, not for you." Can you please try to think of some purely selfish stuff and add that to your list?"

Me: "Actually, like I said before, everything on that list is purely selfish. Tim would kill me if I went out and just bought most of those items. Especially now since we're trying to save money for a house. Everything on that list is stuff I really want."

MIL: "Well, okay then. I guess I'll have to find something else then."

Now I know she said these things with the best of intentions. However, it really showed me how little she knows me. Like I stated earlier, I love this kind of stuff. In fact, I would love nothing more than to collect furniture. Like on the movies, where there is this huge estate, full of wonderful furniture, beautiful pictures, and an attic full of even more furniture! I long to be the one who gets to lift those dust covers that hide the beautiful antique treasures underneath.

That being said, this little quirk of mine, drives Tim insane. He doesn't understand why we have to look at even more furnishings, when our house is already bursting at the seams. (although that's not so true anymore) Or why I have to fight the urge every few months to redecorate the boys' room. Or why it took me four months to find the perfect comforter for our bed. The truth is, I love what these things, say about you. No, I'm not trying to be pretentious or anything. I don't believe that the more money you spend, the better your house looks. In fact, I'm quite the opposite. I love finding bargains. I love coming up with new ways to use old stuff. I love creating my own art. It all makes me happy.

Anyway, in the weeks before Christmas, my mother-in-law spent a great deal of time on the phone with my dear husband, trying to come up with something "just for me". In my opinion, it was time wasted. While she did end up getting me a beautiful necklace, she left me feeling a little ridiculous as well. Here I was sitting there staring down at this gorgeous piece of jewelry, knowing full well, I'd never wear the darn thing.

I'm not ungrateful for what she did. She went out of her way and really tried to find something special "just for me", and that does mean a great deal to me. I love the necklace. I'm just not a jewelry person.

And, just between us, I can't help but day-dream about all the wonderful things I could buy if I just returned the darn thing!