The Office

I use the word sustainability a lot because it covers a lot of ground.

The office before
The office before

Is our reliance on fossil fuels sustainable? No.

Is the rate at which we consume and discard stuff sustainable? No.

What about how we spend our time? Is the pace of our lives sustainable?

Leanne and I each work part-time. We make less money than we could because we believe it is important to spend time at home in our community and especially with our kids who are 6 and 8 years old.

Out of sight out of mind
Out of sight out of mind

I know many people work full-time and I don’t know how they do it. Even with less rigorous work schedules, we still end up with junk piles accumulating in our house. We have a long history of creating a “room of doom”. We don’t mean to, it just happens.

Eek! Draw the curtain!
Eek! Draw the curtain!

I was so happy when we created an office out of the old pantry. I thought it would be a highly efficient workspace. There are cupboards to store office stuff as well as food and kitchen stuff. There is a linoleum covered countertop.

Unfortunately, it was also out of the way, so if there was anything that we needed to get out of the way, it would be stacked carefully in the office. It would stay stacked for about 20 minutes and then one of the cats would climb on it and knock it over. Then it would be spread all over the floor.

To clean this mess up, it takes a special occasion. Last week I had three: 1) two classes of students, all new immigrants to Canada interested in learning about Canadian houses, living, heritage, etc., were coming to tour the house, 2) the neighbourhood was having a give-away-your-stuff weekend called Hammond Treasure Days, and 3) I really want to find some information for the blog that is buried in there.

I had a small window of time. I attacked it with enthusiasm. My goal was nothing less than a clean, clear, mopped floor. As I worked I had a vision of a new layout where I could actually use the desk. After months of sitting at the kitchen table with my laptop, I am typing at the desk in the office with the window to the backyard in front of my face.

This is awesome!

Published by

James Rowley

James lives in Maple Ridge, BC, Canada with his amazing partner, Leanne Koehn, and their two amazing kids in their beautiful house. He studied Science and English Literature at the University of British Columbia where he met Leanne. He also studied acting for a while at Studio 58 in Vancouver. He works as a teacher of English and curriculum writer for new Canadians.

5 thoughts on “The Office”

  1. LOVE the new space! I am inspired to attack my work space!
    It’s exceptionally hard when there is no time in the day for anything. My daughter comes first, then work, then feeding the family…. then cleaning. So cleaning is not what it used to be!!! I think it’s the same for all of us.

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