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Peanut Butter, Red Lipstick and Being Home

Being home most days can be a funny thing.

I revel in the feeling of waking up, slowly (very, very slowly), and knowing that my office – er, studio – is across the hall. There’s no rush out the door and no need for a cohesive outfit. Some days my hair never sees a brush, and most days, my uniform is a slubby tee and jeans.

With the studio overhaul nearing completion (how many times have I said that?), most of you know that the majority of my time is spent working from home, out of the space we’ve created. But one to two days a week, I work with my good friend in the photo studio she runs in the West Loop. These are the days I hop on a bus, a train, and another bus – then walk another 6 blocks! – and I’m confronted with girls in their dresses and men in their business suits. I think, oh! so this is the style nowadays, or, is that how the girls wear their hair now? I feel oddly out of it, as most days I barely step outside – aside from various spray paint projects and my morning walks with Jack. Sometimes I miss the rush of working in a bustling office; I do.

But that’s why it’s funny. I love being home, in the studio, painting the days away (whether it’s pets or chalkboard walls). I love the evenings with Scott, making dinner, watching one of ten various singing competitions, or catching up with friends. I love that when we go to bed at night, I know I’ll wake up to our comfortable home and work in my comfortable, inspiring studio. I feel incredibly fortunate, lucky and blessed. You get it, I get it, but sometimes it feels eerie and quiet when you’re only daytime companions are of the four-legged variety.

To counteract that funny feeling and feel some semblance of balance, I routinely get out of bed before the eight o’clock hour (and on a good day, seven). I proceed to do the things we all do: check email, drink coffee and move at a glacial pace until the caffeine kicks in.

I find myself talking in that syrupy baby voice and having full-on conversations with Jack and the (feline) girls. Along with my daily Today show viewing, it makes me feel more awake and productive; it seems like there’s more going on around me. I reward Jack throughout the afternoon with peanut butter, for no good reason other than keeping me company. (I find so much amusement in his wacky lip-smacking and flappy ears.)

And while I may be sporting my oldest – but let’s be real, my most comfortable – tee in the closet, I’ve also been wearing the most vibrant red-orange lipstick to go to work in our home studio. My BFF, Jill, got me hooked on the color (Nars Heatwave) when she visited for her 30th birthday, and it somehow makes my days feel more important. More official.

No, nothing I’ve said is terribly noteworthy, but these are just some thoughts lately. I’m realizing there’s not much of a conclusion either. (But since when do random thoughts have concise endings anyway?) I would, however, like to add that a bit of dress-up with my red lips could be nice. You know, to counteract the overall funny feeling I sometimes get.

Do you know this feeling, too? Or, hey, what’s on your mind? Give us random; we can handle random. (Scott puts up with my random all the time.)

If this has got you wondering what I do with my days, see my interview with The Borrowed Abode, right here.

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  • Love this! I am hoping upon hope that this time next year I’ll be working from home, for myself (eee!) and the one thing I worry about is feeling isolated or getting sloppy and not making myself look cute in the mornings. :) Oh – as for the talking to the pups in a baby voice. . . well, that already happens a ton when Ryan travels for work, ,so I guess I know I’ll go down that path more!

    Jack, btw, steals my heart every time I see a photo of his eager little face!ReplyCancel

  • Claudia4.6.12 - 8:15 AM

    I am basking in that kind of day today. Coffee, laptop, pets (lots of em). Reading blogs before starting homework. Maybe a run later in the day. Bliss.

    And that lipstick is fantastic on you.ReplyCancel

  • Jill4.6.12 - 8:16 AM

    The lips + blue tee is way pretty enough. You needn’t dress up more! Being a stay at home mom trying to do fashion still is very similar. Sometimes I really feel out of the loop and plus, why spend money on clothes when you’re not in a continual biz environment? I find that buying a few key nice pieces (especially accessories) to whip out still makes me happy enough getting dressed in the morning. Or afternoon. OY. hahaReplyCancel

  • Life_With_Alfred4.6.12 - 8:22 AM

    That sounds absolutely terrific. I also work from home most days, but find myself always getting distracted by snuggly dogs and reading blogs…it’s hard to stay motivated with those cute faces always vying for your attention!ReplyCancel

  • I don’t know if I could focus well enough if I worked from home, but it would be nice once or twice a week. Love the lipstick and the picture of said lipstick.

    I also do the peanut butter thing to my cat every once in a while. Great fun.

    If you want a little more randomness check out my latest blog entry. No connections between thoughts at all. :)ReplyCancel

  • Layne4.6.12 - 8:45 AM

    I work from home, too, and I definitely know this feeling! (And I sometimes have full conversations with Roxie and the cats…) I love the lipstick idea – I do find I’m more productive and in a better mood when I get dressed up, put on makeup, wear jewelry, etc.ReplyCancel

    • Kim4.6.12 - 10:00 AM

      Glad I’m not alone on these funny feelings! and thank you, Claudia!

      Jill, you make a good point. I think the reason I get in a clothing slump is because I wonder, when will I wear this? I’d like to work on finding some middle ground though.

      Haley, that is random! But of course I love that. I grew up around Dayton, OH!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly (Kelly is Inspired)4.6.12 - 10:06 AM

    I recently quit my day job (pharmacist) to stay home with my 4 year old and my german shepherd. I spend a lot of days in yoga pants (really my pajamas.) I might have to find myself a good lipstick.ReplyCancel

  • Jimmy4.6.12 - 11:04 AM

    It’s been a year and four months working from home and being a stay-at-home-dad for me. I can say that the conversations with a toddler can’t be all that different than talking to the four-legged people in your house though. Pretty one way street most of the time. (side note: my son Loren just hopped up into my lap and when he saw the pictures of your dog he pointed and said “woof woof” – so you can say your blog provided happiness to a small child this morning).

    I get what you mean about missing the having a place to go, even if I do really, really love what I’m doing now. I had to enter my appearance for a client in court Wednesday, which meant getting all suited up and walking to the metro in the morning with everyone else. That walk/subway ride was always my favorite part – just feeling that vibe, being around the bustle.

    My “lipstick” moment is taking a shower before my boy wakes up. It sounds ridiculous, but there are an embarrassing number of days where if I don’t do that right away, it just wont happen. More on that here:

  • Meghan4.6.12 - 11:05 AM

    Kim, I LOVE this post! I always wonder if I’d like working from home. And that lipstick? Well, I’m going to the mall today to get some. Thanks for the tip!ReplyCancel

  • Kim4.6.12 - 11:24 AM

    Jimmy, yes, you described it well – being in the hustle and bustle feels so wonderful! Sometimes I think that I should just hop downtown and meet a friend for lunch, but then when I think about the time to travel on transit, have the lunch, and hustle home… well, it would be a 2 hour lunch. And I’m a mean boss. So, why shower just for Jack and the girls? They love me unconditionally.

    Thanks, Meghan!ReplyCancel

  • Trude4.6.12 - 2:54 PM

    Love that self portrait! It sounds like a nice balance, going out to work somewhere else part of the week. I have friend and family that work from home and they all have different ways of getting out and mixing it up, because otherwise you go stir crazy! I still have a day job and even I have conversations with my pup all the time. :) Love the PB photos too!ReplyCancel

  • Terese4.9.12 - 11:17 AM

    as i enter my 12th week as a stay-at-home mom, i’m having these exact feelings. i do love spending the majority of my time cozied up inside my apartment, but it’s hard not to feel like life is going on without you in the outside world! i try to think up daily errands just to give me motivation to brush my hair and put on real clothes. may have to give red lipstick a try now :)ReplyCancel

  • Clare4.9.12 - 11:09 PM

    Your dog looks so much like mine! I love seeing my pup lick PB off his lips too. It’s so entertaining. I always let him lick the knife after I make a PB&J :)ReplyCancel

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