Saturday, July 10, 2010

The new home office takes shape

Several weeks ago, Beth and I were discussing what I could do in the future to keep up my exercising habit as was recommended by my doctors. I loved getting out for long walks, but that meant Beth would have to stay home with Nathan until I returned if he was in bed. Bad weather (especially winter) would hinder my ability to go out for walks. I don't want to take on the monthly expense of a gym membership, and even if I did that would take more time for each session due to travel time, prep time, etc. I had wanted to try a treadmill at home, but we couldn't think of a good place to keep one, and didn't want to take up space in the common areas of the house. I knew I liked the treadmill from using them at cardiac rehab, and I like mentally disconnecting while I listen to my favorite podcasts or an engrossing audio book.

This led us to come up with a new plan for the house. Beth's office downstairs was a room she found she didn't like to use. It was secluded in a corner of the basement, was usually cooler than most of the house, and generally inconvenient, especially if she needed to run upstairs if Nathan started making noise through the baby monitor. The room downstairs can't be a bedroom due to the lack of a window, and would work better as an exercise room anyway. My office upstairs would have room for two people if we could clear out some items.

We started going through our things, cleaning and organizing, and ended up selling my old desk and an old bookshelf on Craigslist. We also sold my old storage trunk on Craigslist which I have an interesting story about, but that's for another post. Once we sell off Beth's old desk I think we'll have offset most of the cost of the new office.

On Monday we headed down to IKEA with Beth's dad to help us haul stuff home while her mom watched Nathan. We had made up a plan for the office and picked up almost everything that day (we had to go back for some items that weren't in stock on Monday). Of course, we had to partake in the Swedish meatballs with lingonberries for lunch at the IKEA restaurant before we left. We picked out a series of VIKA AMON tabletops and VIKA ANNEFORS table legs with storage that would come together in the form of a large T-shaped desk for the two of us. I also picked up a SIGNUM cable organizer to mount under each desk to keep all the cords tidy and up off the floor. We also came home with a new wall clock, desk lamp, and a few other small accessories. Now that everything has come together we absolutely love the new space. We have more workspace than before and the room feels bigger to boot!

We figure the room will stay an office for a long time. This room was part of an addition to the house, and it doesn't have ductwork for air conditioning; just baseboard electric heat. The best way to keep things comfortable is to keep the door open and the ceiling fan running. Plus the vaulted ceiling means there is no attic space above to insulate from the outside temperature. Overall, it works well enough as an office, but we wouldn't want Nathan or other future children to live in a bedroom with this relatively poor climate control.

Now the downstairs (former office) room is our next project. Beth has moved out of the room, and now we just need to sell off her old desk and get rid of some more items. Once it's cleared out we can look for a deal on a low-cost new/refurbished/used treadmill and set up a little exercise space. The cool temperature downstairs should lend itself well to working up a sweat. Having the ability to exercise my heart and body year-round at home will be great. I'll be able to keep up a relatively consistent habit, and be more available as a husband and father. I want to keep my heart healthy and I don't want to become the person who has a treadmill that never gets used. Granted I have more of a reason than most to use it. At least for now I'm able to get my exercise walking outside, and assembling and moving furniture!


  1. Looks great!! :-) If you like I can post a need for a treadmill on never know; it's worth a try if you can get one free! Let me know!

  2. Wow! Your new desk looks fabulous! The room has a really nice, clean look to it. I'm very impressed!


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