Saturday, June 9, 2007

State of Enthusiasm

There is a real magic in enthusiasm.
It spells the difference between
mediocrity and accomplishment.
-Norman Vincent Peale


I awoke this morning with the realization that I must, as usual, spend my Saturday working on Freeman House. It's only in the past few weeks... as the weather has become increasingly oppressive and warm... that it's become a chore. My enthusiasm is quickly waning. No real magic here.

My Saturdays have fallen into a predictable routine as of late: wake early, drink coffee, do a load of laundry and carefully pin it on the clothesline, and work on the house. About 6 p.m. I'll shower and scrub and meet my friend on the porch and together we'll walk downtown to our old theatre. He always gets extra butter on the popcorn and lets me pick our seats. He pays, and I sneak in cookies or brownies. (Actually, we don't have to do much sneaking. In fact, Walter, the owner of the theatre, often asks what we've brought for the evening. Sometimes we share.) After the movie, we walk back to Freeman House under a splattering of stars and humming street lights. It's simple, but it's satisfying. I like the routine.

Still, my enthusiasm is low these days. And it can't be. I've too much to do. This morning, upon the advice of Sue, I went over to her blog and stumbled along the above picture. It's my dream view of a kitchen sink. It's from Victoria Magazine, of course. (I'd love to be scooped up and dropped in the middle of a Victoria magazine home, wouldn't you? I'd never leave. They'd have to call in the dogs to chase me out.)

Anyhow, the picture was so inspiring. Made me want to get busy again. So off I go - destined to be covered in dirt, grime, paint, and lead-based paint shavings until early evening. Thank you, Sue, for the inspiration. Today I needed it!

Come to think of it... I'll bet I'm not the only one! Leave me a comment telling me what inspires you (to decorate, work, create - whatever), and on June 30th I'll randomly draw one comment to win a FREE YEAR SUBSCRIPTION to Victoria Magazine. First issue hits newsstands in October. Happy commenting, and good luck!

26 comments:

betty r said...

What inspires me to get my work done?? I love to read or look at magazines and sometimes choose that above my housework..well, I have learned that when I can look forward to relaxing in a clean house or at least have done some "not so fun" chores or sit in my "somewhat tended to" garden I enjoy the reading that much more as I relax with my feet up and a tall,cool glass of iced tea in one hand and a book in the other....what bliss!

Mrs. G said...

Well, of course, lots of beautiful pictures inspire me :) and right now most of those come from fellow bloggers! I see things and remember that I have the ability to make our home a more beautiful place to be without spending a fortune (of course, some things just require a little extra cash, right?)...

signed...

Pooped from Base Coating Kitchen Cabinets :) (and realizing I need to if it is time to sand & second-coat...and there is wallpaper to strip...and wall sanding & priming to do...and then topcoating...sigh...this kitchen...& the deck painting are my last big projects of the summer & I mean it :)

p.s. please don't enter me in the drawing as I've already signed up for a subscription, LOL :)

Hope said...

Hi Brin,
Sounds like you had a wild time at the OK Corral!! I'm sure you'll have some good memories and stories after you get over being so tired.
One of my inspirations to clean and redecorate my house is to get something new. My husband likes yard sales and junk stores as much as I do. He's out and about more too so he finds lots of treasures. Today he brought me the cutest little metal bird cage on a stand. I love it! Now I have to clean everything and move it around to fit the bird cage in. Even something small makes me want to clean everything. Sometimes that's the only reason I clean at all. I'm so bad!!

Have a good weekend!
Hope

Anonymous said...

What "moves" me to clean? Redo rooms? I love to go to garage sales early Saturday mornings and find the ONE thing that gets me excited. I know I'll be going home to clean it up and while looking for the perfect place to display it, will have to rearrange something and that starts the cleaning process! And the moving of found objects from one room to another. My home gets picked up, cleaned and looks fresh all because of a few dollars spent on something I fall in love with!
MimiG
mimig2002@yahoo.com

fairmaiden said...

Magazines also inspire me...Victoria being my favorite...Country Living is a close second...I get so many ideas from it. I also like Cottage Living. When the seasons change I get inspired too. I think the change of colors of items on display in the stores has something to do with it. I also get inspired from window shopping at my favorite shops in our lil Old Towne especially 'The Red Door'. It is a shabby chic style antique shop. I am an artist so I always have ideas brewing in my head and I love to create..I crave it, like excerise! Talking with others also motivates me. And lastly I'm a dreamer and can look ahead in my thoughts as to what the outcome will be and so I get inspired to see it come to pass. We just bought a new cottage this year and we are slowly planting our cottage gardens...it will take probably 7 yrs. All we have is hard as cement dirt.

Sherry said...

I'm so happy that you are re-inspired! I have to tell you, the way you described your day sounded very romantic and "book-like". (That's a compliment, by the way, LOL)

What inspired me? So many things. Right now I have to say it's nature. The beauty in it, the perfect randomness. It's truly amazing and it inspires me to want to create other beautiful spaces. :)

Sherry

cherry menlove said...

Well I already have my subscription sorted so I'll let someone else have my chance at winning. But I wanted to stop by and say that some days it is so hard to get motivated and I can only applaud you for keeping going in the heat, you precious thing. I hope you have lots of water on hand. Hey, can I join you in that Victoria house??

Love Cherry xx

Kathleen Grace said...

I have been through the lack of enthusiasm phase of a house redo that takes every spare minute and all your weekends for years. Sometimes it helps to just take a day you should be working and do something you really like. The farmers market rejuvenates me and it opens really early so if I want my flower and color fix I can still go home and have some time to work on projects. Sometimes you have to get out of the house and get some new ideas.

Littlepenpen said...

I must get a copy of Victoria magazine. I have heard so much about it and love the picture you posted! I think completely finishing one project inspires me to move on to another. And I agree with Mrs.G... reading other people's blogs and seeing their beautiful projects inspires me to get busy!

Betty said...

My daughter, Amy, inspires me...she is a stay at home Mom, has 6 children, is a teacher but is homeschooling now.....she gets so excited over 'Romantic Homes',and she
always has a project going or one she plans to do....We both enjoy home and decorating it.....Thanks, Betty

Kelly Fisher said...

What inspires me to get stuff done? My Adderall, of course! :)
Having ADD makes it very difficult to get motivated...but, when I do you better watch out - I then switch to hyper focus and there is no stopping until I am done!

Hope you are doing well....and what ever happened to those letters you found at Freeman House?

Sue said...

Oh Brin, I'm honored and so happy to help! Of course magazines like Victoria inspire me but woman like you have more effect on me, and I know the only way I'll ever have that dream kitchen or house is to make it happen, and when I read of your tales of Freeman House I think, if a young single gal can do it, this 40 something grandma can sure try her best to keep up! Hugs!!

Brigitta said...

I get inspired by the beautiful blogs I keep finding, by pictures in magazines (over here in the Netherlands we have a magazine called "Seasons" and I just love it, it shows beautiful homes in Britain, France and other European countries) and sometimes by homeimprovement magazines. Being a single sahm with poor health it's not always easy to get the things done that you want to get done, but I'm learning that Rome wasn't built in one day, so why should I put myself under so much pressure, all good things need time ;-)

Wylee said...

My empty belly inspires me to cook, my lack of toilet paper inspires me to shop, and fresh air and hot sunshine inspire me to fall asleep on the glider rocker on the patio. Oh wait, you wanted to know what inspires me to work, uhhhh, *looking around* obviously not a lot.

April said...

When I find a new item at a yard sale or thrift store that just sings to me (you know that feeling, right?) I'm inspired to rearrange my world so it will fit right in. Whether it's cleaning off that hutch to fit in a new piece of milkglass or replacing the old cream quilt with a new-to-me white chenille bedspread, I get inspired to make room in my life for the things that are useful AND beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Sunshine!...more than anything the sun inspires me, whether by the pure joy that a beautiful, sunny day evokes in me or, on another level, the idea of the sun as it "runs" in its course across the heavens. The scripture admonishing us to "redeem the time" that God has granted us gives me the nudge I need to move on-get busy, create, clean up, or rise to whatever occasion presents itself. I love your blog! Thanks for the care you obviously put into your devotionals. Becky

Anonymous said...

What inspires me to get something done? Usually, in all honesty, it is a deadline. Procrastinator's guilt. However, in almost every case, the "i-should-have-started-earliers,-it-could-have-been-so-much-better (enjoyable, easier, etc.)" occur. It is something I need the Lord to help me with. It also prevents me from actually doing creative things I long to do, because I feel guilty if I enjoy something artistic like watercolor or nuturing like baking because I've got that work project looming and my closet and photos must get organized....

Aside from this, I find much beauty in art, and wonder about a God who cares about us so much to place a desire for beauty in us fallen creatures. Why should "beauty" as a concept matter? I don't know. Except that perhaps it is a way for us to reach for and reflect His glory, and never quite be satisfied this side of heaven.

And I've loved Victoria for ever, was saddened the day I got a letter saying the magazine was ending. I found out that it was coming back on your blog! :-)

Lana
lrc333@aol.com

Lallee said...

For new decorating ideas I turn to the magazines and more particularly blogs these days. To get to the down and dirty cleaning, it helps if I put my iPod music on. Some days it's Christian gospel and sometimes it's good ol' rock and roll to really get me moving. I'm with you about beginning to drag when the weather gets heavy from heat. It's harder for me to find motivation, but getting started is always the hardest part and the actual work is the easiest. Yesterday was like a sauna outside~NOT a good motivator. It was fun to read what motivates everyone else. Today I'm going to get my list done because of your motivation. Thank you, Brin! I have already reserved a Victoria subscription~yeah! So don't put my name in the hat.

Once Upon A Notion said...

Your posts inspire me, nature, looking at all of God's bountiful blessings on our acreage - the baby carrot shoots, the tnder corn under the bird netting, tiny apples in the orchard. When I am rejuvinated by His bounty, I am more apt to take hold of those other more mundane tasks and get them done so that I may be a good steward of all he has given me.

I love your posts so very much and will be linking to your blog from mine.

Steph

restyled home said...

I love decorating mags and home and garden shows, but I also have an active mind. I love to look at objects and see how I can use them in different ways. I always aim for pretty as that is my decorating style...
Love your blog!
Linda

Anonymous said...

What inspires me is probably a little odd to most...

I have a good friend who upon entering her house makes me want to run home to organize my pantry, paint my living room walls and generally just "nest". She's my version of "Martha Stewart" !

I dont know what it is about her but she brings it out in me--and its a good thing. She's the friend who I can count on to tell me what type of paint to buy, how much fencing I need to get at Home Depot or where to get a decent pedicure. She's who I call when the invite reads "Creative Black Tie".

She laughed out loud when I told her being in her house was like that first day in grade school when
my eraser was bright and pink, my Ticonderoga # 2 pencils were "just" the right sharpness and the notebook had endlessly clean pages from cover to cover.

That's what inspires me! My good friend Colleen.

renee498@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

What inspires me is probably a little odd to most...

I have a good friend who upon entering her house makes me want to run home to organize my pantry, paint my living room walls and generally just "nest". She's my version of "Martha Stewart" !

I dont know what it is about her but she brings it out in me--and its a good thing. She's the friend who I can count on to tell me what type of paint to buy, how much fencing I need to get at Home Depot or where to get a decent pedicure. She's who I call when the invite reads "Creative Black Tie".

She laughed out loud when I told her being in her house was like that first day in grade school when
my eraser was bright and pink, my Ticonderoga # 2 pencils were "just" the right sharpness and the notebook had endlessly clean pages from cover to cover.

That's what inspires me! My good friend Colleen.

renee498@gmail.com

jen said...

Hi, Brin!
I'm finally catching up on your blog since I've been so busy these past few weeks--finishing up the school year, and this week nesting like crazy. That's what's motivating me right now--being 9 months pregnant and having lots to do before baby comes! Wow, I'm amazed at how much I'm getting done each day; I'm not usually this good at checking things off my list. Now I'm almost done, one or two days and we'll be all set for baby Alexander. Which is a good thing since my due date is today!
Thanks for all your fun, inspiring, and beautiful photos and posts!
Jen

Rhonda in OK said...

What inspires? Well, if I don't do, it won't get done!
Your blog is so sweet, I grew up in the Piney Woods, north of where you are now. While I don't live in TX anymore, once a Texan, always a Texan. I really enjoy small town adventures.

Anonymous said...

Ooooh, I'm barely squeaking in under the deadline! I posted to this blog when I read it back when, but I must have pushed the wrong button somehow. Company is my biggest motivator to clean. But when I'm not expecting anyone, then it's funny how thinking of my grandmother makes me want to nest. I remember her big round shiny coffee table I used to spray with Pledge and wipe and wipe til I saw myself in it. The other thing is just putting on one of your aprons. I was so thrilled you made aprons look so fun and trendy again, and just putting it on gets me in the cleaning mode. Thanks for your fun and funky ideas that make life interesting!

Anonymous said...

Oh, oops. The blog about your fun and funky ideas and grandmother's shiny round coffee table is from me, Auntie M. Thanks again for the reminder. And Happy Fourth!