coffee + cre8tive {oct 31 ’06}

October 31, 2006

coffee + cre8tive {oct 31 '06}Today we had a little party for my 86-year-old oma in celebration of her return home. She was in a nursing home for several months following a major heart operation. The party was mostly filled with other sweet oma’s, well dressed Germans who have been around these parts long before the second world war. A few children and of course, some from our family attended as well, so the mix of ages was just perfect and all had a really nice time.

Oma is quite the spirited woman, very fiery and extremely sharp, so seeing her back in a familiar space amongst friends warmed my heart. As I sit here typing, I’m reminded of my other grandmother, far across the Atlantic over in Rhode Island, all alone in the nursing home. Maybe she’s watching the squirrels outside of her window at this very moment, thinking about me, too. It saddens me sometimes to know that one grandmother is so happy while the other is so very alone. I wish I could split in two so as to be in both places at once, but I guess the important thing is that I joy was given to one of these very special ladies today.

As my oma Ilse removed her teeth after everyone left, right in front of the remaining family members, I was first taken aback, but quickly thought of how nice it must be to simply not care anymore about the opinions of others. It made me laugh as she did it, in fact a few of us younger ones got quite a roll from it, but at the end of day, she is eighty-six and at that age, you have earned your right to do whatever you please, with or without your dentures.

I know this post has had nothing to do with creativity or design yet, but if you think about it, maybe you can apply a lesson from oma. Maybe you can care a little less about what others think, applying this carefree spirit in areas of your life where you may be fearful or stuck. This could extend to deep emotions or something far lighter like the design of your home. Perhaps you need to let go a bit and stop worrying about what others will say and just be you.

While hanging out at Apartment Therapy this afternoon, catching up on the past month that I’ve missed on the site, I was inspired to see so many colorful entries for their Fall Colors contest. I have clients who are paralyzed when in a paint shop, unsure as to what color to choose, afraid of screwing up. What’s the big deal if you do screw up? Are you worried about what your family or friends will say? Honestly, who cares. Take your teeth out for a moment. Are you going to wait until you are eighty-six before you start living?

An AT post today made me laugh because the home owner expressed how much she loved orange and a cap from a Gatorade bottle was her inspiration – she brought it to the paint store for an exact match and went home and painted it on the wall over her work station. It was stunning. I liked how she took a more casual approach to her hue selection. I have friends who take months to select the perfect shade of blue, only to paint, step back, and meltdown because it’s the wrong color. It’s times like these when I want to ask them to set priorities. Paint shouldn’t be the straw to break the camels’ back, should it?

(images of Diane Bigda illustrations, new over at Lilla Rogers Studio.)


  • Reply Anonymous November 1, 2006 at 6:01 am

    Thanx for the Oma story. It made me happy and sad at the same time. My Oma passed away this year and you made me remminess about my Oma, and my Opa who used to do the same thing with his dentures…..
    To the love of grandparents, they are missed.

  • Reply Heather Moore November 1, 2006 at 7:41 am

    Great thoughts. Thanks. A passing comment from my husband on day taught me to trust my own instincts, and this has made a huge difference to my work process and to my enjoyment too!

  • Reply Anonymous November 1, 2006 at 8:36 am

    Aw, you made me miss my Grandma!! She’s 81. Sometimes I think, what am I doing here, so far away from her. I get so sad!!
    I call her often, but she misses me so much!!
    We have always been so close.
    She still lives at home, and does for herself, but I wish I could be with her everyday.
    What did you think of the weather this morning???

  • Reply decor8 November 1, 2006 at 9:36 am

    Anon + Heather:I’m glad you liked it… I think being around someone who is soon to be 97 years old makes us reflect on our own life – you know, sometimes we feel so young and important but we’re not really living our life because we’re always so concerned about others. Sometimes unknowingly.

    Angie: You’re back from Holland! I imagine your kids are back in school now, too. I hope you had a fun time with them. Where does your grandmother live anyway? Are you British or American (I can’t recall)? Yes, the weather took a sudden turn here – I heard we are to expect snow this week. Eep!!!


  • Reply Anonymous November 2, 2006 at 8:58 am

    Hi Holly,
    We had a wonderful time in Holland.
    It’s beautiful there, we toured Anne Franks house, took the canal cruise and so on.
    Last week we had friends visiting from Indonesia. The week flew by.
    My friend and I spent one afternoon in Celle—the shops are great there. Have you been?
    The girls are back in school, I’ve been laying low, relaxing, catching up on chores. Yuk!!
    My wonderful mom sent a package for us, and in it were tapes she made for me, HGTV and Food Network, and some new Rachael Ray Talk Shows.
    I love it when she does that.
    How much longer do you have in Hannover?
    We should meet–what is your schedule like for next week?
    My grandmother is in Louisiana.
    I’m American by the way.

    How is your brother-n-law?

  • Reply decor8 November 2, 2006 at 9:22 am

    Oh Heather if you read this I wanted to ask – what was the passing thought from your husband?? I’d really like to know.


  • Reply decor8 November 2, 2006 at 9:35 am

    Angie – that is so great about those tapes. you must have a region free video player here, huh? those are great.

    i’ve not been to celle – can i get there by train? maybe i’ll visit tomorrow.

    yes, i’d love to meet you. you said you live nearby, so perhaps we can meet at kroepcke? email me offline to set it up. :) tues or wed works well for me – either noon or after 5pm.


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