Sunday, November 29, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a White... Kitchen

I've narrowed down the new kitchen to three styles. My beloved Ikea catalogue has doggy-ears to mark my favourite pages. It was time to set out in hot pursuit of soft-close doors, European-inspired tapware and gadget drawers that were truly designed by geniuses.

It wasn't long and I was up close and personal with my first kitchen. It was a 'kid in a candy store' moment. I knew my eyes were bugging out. I knew my mouth was gaping - I didn't care. I opened drawers, investigated sliding pantries and then I found a dishwasher hidden behind a cupboard door. I almost applauded.

I've never had a new kitchen. I once had a kitchen that crumbled like weet-bix on he inside of the cupboards and drawers and I had to dust everything off before using it. (Please don't tell me it was asbestos.)

I pulled myself away in search of another favourite and found it just around the next bend. A smile spread from ear to ear as if I was seeing a dear, old friend. I took mental pictures and tried to imagine the style in my own kitchen. Very nice.

Finally, I came face to face with the last kitchen. The silvery taps glistened in the battery-operated down light as if it beckoned me to come closer. I reached out and dared to touch the cupboard edges. Oh, so smooth. I began to purr. What had my life been missing? I was so happy, all I wanted to do was lay down in the middle of the floor and make 'snow angels' in the shaggy rug but other folk staring would've ruined the moment.

I inhaled deeply and pulled myself together. Composure girl. It's just a kitchen. But it's not just a kitchen to me. This is where we've talked about life and love and loss and we've held each other, fought with each other and kissed and made up. It's more than a venue where food is served; it's the hub of our home. It's where our hearts beat together when we rise for the challenge of a new day and where we gather in each other's arms at the end of the day.

Our kitchen is touched by the lives and stories of our family and it deserves to be a beautiful place. And with those marshmellowy thoughts billowing through my mind and my heart pulsating with renewed purpose, I left the store and headed home in search of a tape measure and sketch pad. It was time.

copyright 2010 Philippa Vette

Monday, November 16, 2009

Seduced by Square Footage - Part 2

Still dreaming of the six bedroom house with room to swing a cat, I approached my husband gingerly about the open home in thirty minutes. "Go ahead and have a look," he said.

"Will you go with me?" I asked. I was still in a state of shock that he hadn't given me the extensive list of reasons why we're not ready to move yet.

"Nope, you can go." But I really wanted him to go too. He's Mr Dependable, Mr Reliable and very Mr Practical. This is the man who insisted we buy a set of bakeware as a wedding gift, you know, cake and muffin tins. It was thirteen years ago but I still remember.


My husband has been living by a motto, which until recently, I was unaware. "Happy Wife - Happy Life." Somehow he let that little gem slip right out of the vault and now I can get almost anything I want. (How long this window will remain open, is anyone's guess but if I don't abuse it too often, who knows?) So when I quoted his motto back to him he folded like a deck chair and we were soon in the car on our way to the open home.

All I wanted to do was go inside and see the kitchen and the 'cat-swinging-space' but Mr Practical wanted to check out the front garden and down the side of the house first. I was patient. Eventually, we tracked through each room. Mr DIY lagged behind tapping on walls, pressing on floorboards to find creaks and pointing out every hairline crack or piece of peeling paint. Practical but just a little annoying. His tapping kept interrupting my alfresco-dining-with-girlfriends-under-swaying-palms-on-a-balmy-summer's-evening scenario emerging in my imagination.

After a brief interrogation by the agent who was dressed as if he were just popping down to the local store to get milk - rather casual, we traced our steps back to the car - deflated.

"It didn't grab me," he said, getting into the car. I had to admit, me either. I cast one last look over my shoulder at what I had hoped would be my oasis and let a disappointed sigh escape my lips.

On our way home, I realised I'd been seduced by square footage alright. But so it is with anything that holds little or no real significance to us, once confronted and seen for what it really is, it no longer has the power to affect our lives or decisions from that moment on.

As we pulled into our driveway, a sense of liberty and excitement grew within. I knew my next move exactly. Reaching for my beloved Ikea catalogue, I skimmed through the pages in search of my next great adventure - a new kitchen. Booh-yeah!
copyright 2010 Philippa Vette

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Seduced by Square Footage

"We need a bigger house," I muttered through clenched teeth as I tripped over the office chair rammed into the corner of the room as I clambered over boxes, products and samples, in a desperate attempt to get to the door.

This house we live in was great when there were four of us but now that there are five (one is a teenager - another is a toddler) and a new business, I'm feeling the pinch. Funny thing is, I'd had a bit of a twinge to drive down one of my favourite streets in the neighbourhood, for some time now but today I decided to drive a different route for school pick up... just for a look. And what did I find? Not one but two houses for sale.

Last time I had that twinge I drove down the street we live in now (8 years ago) and found our house. So now I'm starting to wonder. A quick look on the internet and I was almost packing. Six bedrooms, three-car garage (who really cares about the garage?) park at the end of the quiet street, ensuite to master bedroom, (I've been sharing my 'cosmetic counter' with three males and I have no 'girl' space of my own. Did I mention they always want to use the bathroom when I'm styling my hair or putting on make up? Absolutely no forward thinking! Sorry I had to vent.)

The bigger of the two houses had space, space and more space. I bet if I went upstairs and the kids where downstairs, I could almost think I was on holiday somewhere by myself. That is a fantasy I could re-live again and again. If my husband brought me a drink with an umbrella, he could be the cabana boy!

Sadly, we're not ready to move. We're just about to rennovate the kitchen and I suppose if I rearranged a few things I mightn't keep tripping over my office chair. Oh but just imagine... open home this Saturday. It wouldn't hurt to take a look, would it?

copyright 2010 Philippa Vette

Finding Your Rainbow

After a week that can only be described as frantic and messy, dodging traffic and skipping between rain clouds, my rainbow finally appeared - in fact I got two!

I'm starting up my business as an inspirational writer and we all know in varying degrees that when we start something important, it's a massive undertaking, piecing it all together with a million decisions, each with the potential to lead us in so many different directions. But what I wasn't quite ready for was HOW much work really goes in to setting up a business to get things how you imagine them to be in your head.


So when I finally got to see the T-shirts samples at the end of the week and they weren't what I wanted, I felt like scrapping the whole idea. (Did I mention I need them by this Friday - Ladies Market Night, Mansfield State School 7pm?)

But Saturday rolled around and with it appeared my rainbows. Invited to a High Tea at WB's (Walking Buddy's) house, I finally got to meet WB's friend Keren who inspired me to pull out all the stops and keep gunning for my dream. Awesome, bubbly lady, beautiful products. (

That was rainbow numero uno.

Number two appeared when my buddy, Lil Lauren met with me (after High Tea) to discuss my website. She came up with a simple, clean layout and this morning, like magic, I found a copy in my Inbox. I love it but when did she find time to do that?!

So, when you feel like your feet are dragging through the mud - lookup, find your rainbow and just keep going...

The best is yet to come!

copyright 2010 Philippa Vette