The first home Mr. Keller and I bought together was on the south side of town in the university area. I remember falling head over heels for the original wood floors, the arch doorways and the brick fireplace that was married to a very shabby mantel. I was so young back then and had very little idea of what my personal style was, but oh, how I loved that little house. That was really the marked beginning of my love affair with old things. I’ve never once looked back.
Throughout these last few years, I’ve come to realize there’s no text book design for what a home should look like. One of the biggest, most liberating things I’ve learned as an incurable designer is how to trust myself to recognize when I come across something I love, versus something I like. When I started to only buy things that I loved (within financial reason, of course), it was amazing to me how everything seemed to come together. Rooms took shape and it was, for the most part, effortless.
I love looking at a discarded item at a thrift store or yard sale and seeing something beautiful in it. Some of the things I bring home have to be loved back to life, but some of them are still so beautiful all on their own. I somehow seem to hear these silent stories from these items and bringing them into my home signifies familiarity and comfort to me. These things, mostly decades-old, have withstood the test of time. They were once well-loved. I love that it shows. I want my home to be laid-back and relaxing. I want solid wood furniture in my home with knicks and dings. I want chippy dishes on my shelves. It’s comforting to me. And it all tells a story. It inspires me.
Now, what I think is beautiful *will always be* something different than what you think is beautiful. That’s something to be celebrated! I love the diversity that is in the design world. And I love the talent I see in so many of you. How perfect it is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Lately, I’ve had this phrase in my head: Do your thing and do it well. If you do this, something beautiful will always come from it.
And now for a little nonsense about us.
Mr. Keller and I are both from Kuna, a little farming town outside of Boise. We grew up together but didn’t date until we met back up here in Pocatello. We’ve been married for almost eight years. Mr. Keller graduated with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and he works full-time in property management and investment properties. I’m the official zoo-keeper, house-keeper, chef, taxi-driver, grocery shopper and homemaker.
I’m also Hollie.
Every afternoon I put a naptime “sign” on the front door. I’m not ashamed. I take an afternoon nap with my children any chance I get. I’ve joked that what the sign should really say is: It’s naptime at our house. If you so much as breathe on this door, the mother of the house will chase you down and break both your legs. Like a boss.
I’m the oldest of three children and we’re all adopted. (Adoption has a very special place in my heart!) My favorite stores to shop for good deals are TJ Maxx and Ross. Mr. Keller has finally learned to stop asking when I’ll be home when he knows I’m headed to either of those two stores. I struggle with chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. I spend my days trying to run from it, but sometimes it gets the best of me. So, if you see me in sweats and no make-up when you come buy things, now you know why!
I’m sincerely addicted to Mad Men and have spent more time than you’d like to know trying to convince Mr. Keller to start combing his hair like Don. I’ve always known I was born in the wrong era. I dress up for almost all of my favorite shows’ season premieres (Downton included, you know this).
I’m so fascinated with old photographs. I spent a good few hours looking through and buying old black and white photos at the last WildHare Flea Market. When I came across a photo of a chubby blonde baby sitting in an old galvanized tin washtub, I started to cry. He looked just like my baby! I couldn’t believe it. Then I started wondering who his mother was and how family could discard old photos like this. I could get lost in wondering about the stories these people could tell.
I’m a self-proclaimed hippy. It drives Mr. Keller crazy most of the time. If you want to talk homeopathy, vaccinations and natural birth, I’m your girl. I was determined to have my first baby naturally. I labored naturally for 41 hours and ended up with a c-section delivery that left me with a scar much deeper than the one on my stomach. With my second baby, I had the natural VBAC delivery I had dreamed of (thanks be to God and a whole slew of herbal remedies that helped prepare my body for delivery). I consider this to be the biggest accomplishment I’ve ever had. I can honestly say I’ve never had a more direct answer to my prayers than I did the night Danny was born. You don’t want to get me started on the politics that go on in obstetrics here in Pocatello. It nauseates me if I think about it for too long. If there are any other local VBAC moms out there, I’d be happy to extend my support in any way possible.
And now that we’ve all had a lovely dose of narcissism, I’ll leave you with this…
Things that make me terribly happy:
Home videos, yoga pants, Don Draper, mint ice cream, dressing up for dates, going to yard sales, red nail polish, childbirth, sleep, pizza, hearing my boys laugh together, white clouds against blue sky, mint fields in the summertime and going home.