2015 started rather strangely for me. New Year's Day, I drove over 380 miles one way to pick up a piece of furniture - the beginning of the new life in the new apartment I'd eventually move into in January.
And while I enjoyed the process of decorating a space for myself, without the hems and haws of another voice, the doubts of another mind, or the dismissive eye of another "decorator" - getting used to the idea of being 'alone' was and continues to be, quite the struggle.
I worked hard at putting together my little apartment, spending hours and more money than I'm going to admit at making it what I wanted for myself. But then, my heart was broken into a million little pieces when Abby passed away unexpectedly.
I thought I'd never have another dog. It took months to grieve that loss, a loss that came at the base of a mountain I was already having to climb. But then fate intervened, as fate almost always does, and while with clients in Florida I fell in love again. This time not with a piece of furniture or a man, but a dog.
You all know him now, as Arlo. And, from the moment I held that chunky little ball of love, I knew that I was going to have a new best friend.
The only problem was, my then apartment complex didn't allow dogs. Here I had just spent all that time putting together an apartment that spoke in bounds to my fresh, new life - and I had to move. So, I packed it all up, and we moved to a new place that was pet friendly and started to make a home there.
A little more money, and a little more finesse, but this time - the apartment felt even more like home. People would ask: "why all white?" And I would (and do) say: I lived in a house for almost 9-years that was dark, and heavy, moody, and oppressive. I wanted to be welcomed home everyday with clean, crisp, bright, and beautiful rooms - and I am.
I had a few design fails along the way, of course. The bedroom canopy fiasco:
The many chairs I bought that ended up (thankfully) in other homes without costing me too much out of pocket:
But no design dilemma compared to the heavier hurdle: dating! It was (and is) an awful experience - and if you are going through it right now too, I am sure that the struggle is universal. If only it were as easy as decorating! Am I right?
So, as I end the year, I reflect back on the changes I've made, and the changes I still need to make. I resolve to make 2016 a better year, a year where I can use everything I learned in 2015 to my favor. Indeed, every year will have highs and lows, and there have been some remarkable highs in 2015. It's those highs that I will manifest more of in 2016! I've decided to start making my handmade crystal cross bottles again!
Look for them in 2016 - Cross Bottle Guy
And I'll be blogging more! Including a book review post everyday in January, so don't miss those! Have a great New Years Eve, be safe, and smart, and best of luck to you and the start of your own resolutions!
Arlo and I wish all of you a Happy New Year!