I collect ideas

I collect ideas

It’s true … I collect ideas, tons of them. If you ask Aaron what the most annoying part of living with me is I think he would be quick to answer (and I’d be correct in answering for him) that it’s my ability to collect things. Mostly paper … and all important, of course.

I really love having ideas. I don’t know which love language this fits into but I absolutely LOVE it when someone asks me for an idea. It makes me feel valid. Like I have information that is valuable beyond when to start feeding solids to a child … the debate on cloth vs. disposable diapers, formula vs. breastfed. All important content for a beginner conversation or distilling trust in a new friendship that began in the bottle aisle of the grocery store. However, and I don’t know why I struggle with this so much, but I do; it’s beyond important to me to be something other than “just a mom”.

I’ve actually been thinking a lot about this lately how I’m soon to be 27 (a month away!) and at one point in the past 5 years I just kind of stopped trying to be whatever it was I thought I might one day be.

I never thought past the life dream of being a mom and once that happened, I thought I had arrived. But where? It’s been a prickly path for me to travel, not one that I knew I was going down and not one I ever really had direction with. I just walked it.

Here I am. A mom. My prayers answered, a happy home I made. I quickly learned that it wasn’t the end-all for me. That I could admit to myself that there was still a coal burning inside of me for something else. Not greater. Just different.

Then I made a Life List which is something I’ve been doing for a very long time without ever knowing it. We made lists of things I wanted to do before getting married and systematically checked each one off. I made a list of things I wanted to do before having kids, check check check.

For some reason I believed that giving birth to new life meant mine would just stop.

If you read over my Life List you’ll see that a good 30% or more are focused on my children. Wanting things for them, watching them in happiness, and it dawned on me recently that although, yes, I want those things in life, I also want a life of my own.

Inclusive of my family, but my own. I want to make a mark bigger than their footprints.

Which brings me to my collections of magazine clip outs in organized folders. (!!!! Yup, me! I organize my ideas. Fancy that.) I have “Gardening ideas”, “House ideas”, “Ideas for travel”, “Things to see”, “Things to do”, “Craft ideas”, “How-tos”, and general “Housekeeping tips and ideas”.

I’ve decided I’m drawn to ideas and inspiration in this way because with each clip out, with each page – I see myself in a different light than if I would go over and look in the mirror right now. I see creativity and beauty with my hands, I see potential and fruition unfolding. I see that I can wear these house slippers, finger paint and still escape to the “some day” without losing myself in the “today”.

So, with that. Shall we?

I collect ideas

These branding irons are only $10!

# A great hostest gift for a bbq or birthday bash.
# A great father’s day gift.
# Stocking stuffer for the meat lover (or veggie-grill master)

I collect ideas

I clipped this for the closet door idea – see that cork board? We’re building a house and the basement will be left unfinished. One of the rooms in basement will be a playroom, the other a guest bedroom or office for the time being. I also think I could LOVE that kind of door/wall space in my laundry room. All of which we get to customize and specialize once we move in.

I collect ideas

Along those same lines are these tackable tile panels? Either way, whatever you call them, they could be a great addition (and an easy burlap DIY) to a small office space, wall or even back of a book case.

I collect ideas

These Ikea shelves turned dining room bar area are genius! I am in love. I could also see this in a living room for a reading space (the bottom shelf acting as a bench) or the media console. I love seeing ordinary and functional turn into something surprising, yet still ordinary and still just as functional.

I collect ideas

I collect ideas

This outdoor picnic space took my breath away when I first saw it in the magazine. The bamboo poles are only $9 each from the website here, I’m sure if you looked at a flea market (we live near Shipshewana) or even your “one stop” grocery store at the right time of year, you can find them cheaper. Maybe the tiki poles are on sale or half off? Buy them, chop off the lantern and a pole you’ve got!

The drop cloth the magazine described is hard to find on the home depot website – I couldn’t find a tan workforce drop cloth, only blue – but there are still plenty of options for the drop cloth … which would multipurpose themselves as curtains when you were done with your outdoor picnic.

Those are the ideas I’ll explain and cover for now. What do you collect? Are there people like me out there with their manila folders of clip outs?

6 thoughts on “I collect ideas

  1. OOOOHHH ….do I ever know who your mom is!

    i never quite thought about this collecting as a different way I see myself – but it makes perfect sense. Not only do I have idea files but my recipe files and collections are beyond reason…I think when I clip/tear/cut out ideas and recipes I am filling my creative and artistic cravings. It is almost impossible to throw any of this away. Most likely this task will be up to my children someday. šŸ™‚

  2. I used to do this too…until I realized a few things about myself.

    1) I’m a passion-of-the-moment kind of gal. In other words, by the time I do finally have the time/money/motivation to do whatever it is I’m filing away, I’ll have come up with some other great idea that’s consuming my life at the time, and either I won’t remember this one, or I won’t remember where I filed it.

    2) I don’t have time/desire to reorganize my files. Ever. Which means that when I die, my children would be saddled with my years of idea collection. Poor things. When I finally came to this realization a couple of years ago, I purged my idea files to (almost) nothing.

    3) I’m not 27 anymore…I’m almost 34. I’ve gone from 2 kids and still some semblance of a life, to 4 kids and a life that is totally consumed by my children and homeschooling. Or maybe that’s just this season, while I still have a nursing baby. Either way, I love where I am now. I love being mom, pouring myself into the lives of these kids. I don’t have time for my own dreams…at least not near as many as I’d have hoped (more than ideas, I collect hobbies!) but I am content for now. I’m looking ahead to the future, and secure in the knowledge that someday all my little birds will fly, and I will finally have time to write the great American novel. šŸ˜‰

  3. Hmmmm…I think we subscribe to the same magazine(s)!!

    I too have a {very organized} “Idea Binder”. However, it’s almost completely devoted to ideas for my someday-house a.k.a. my dream house!

    Even though it might be a while before I get this house, I still use many of the decor, project, and gardening ideas in my current house…so it’s worth it.

    Every time I get a magazine in the mail, I go through it as quickly as I can and rip out any pictures, recipes, articles, etc. that interest me. I toss the magazine and then get out my idea book. It’s a fun process and I love looking at how my styles change over time.

    Thanks for sharing!

  4. Andrea – that’s what my folders are for as well – the one day dream house šŸ™‚ but I’m having a blast collecting the ideas along the way. And I do the same thing with magazines – rip out what I need right away and then toss! Keeps the clutter around here down šŸ™‚

  5. Krystal! Hi!! Thanks for commenting šŸ™‚ Collecting hobbies sounds just as wonderful … what hobbies are you currently partaking in?

    Homeschooling with 4 kids, you are awesome!

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