Office vs. Guest Room: A Tie

A few weeks ago, I posted about how Chris had bashed my dreams of a lovely home office to shreds with his cold, cold heart.  Since then, we haven’t really talked about the office/guest room situation in our house.  To be fair, the conversation was kind of put on hold for us because Chris’s granddad came to stay for a few weeks while he was in town for a few medical issues (nothing serious and he’s doing much better now), so the room was being used as a guest room for a while anyway.

Which led to my eventually conceding that we do use our guest room way too often for us to get rid of it altogether.  But in response to my concession, Chris surprised me on Sunday morning by casually saying that he had a few extra boxes of flooring left over from our downstairs family room remodel a few years ago and what would I think about putting flooring down in the “office.”

For those of you who do not speak fluent Chris, let me translate that conversation for you:  “Thank you for not being a total hard ass on the guest room thing and as a show of my gratitude for your flexibility, we can call it your office, even though we both know it will still sometimes be a guest room, and I’ll make it as nice as a office/guest room can be.”

That’s what he really meant to say.

(Chris always has lots of helpers when he works around the house…)

So, Sunday afternoon, Chris put flooring down for me in my office.  We were short two boxes of laminate flooring, though, so we took this small little scrap we had to the flooring place and asked if they could match it to the exact flooring we bought three years ago.  I was about as hopeful as you can image being in that situation, but it turns out that the company got us pretty darn close.  The original laminate we bought was no longer made, but the version we purchased two boxes of on Sunday was the exact same shade and marking, but the planks were just a little bit wider.  Once it’s down on the floor, you can’t really tell unless I point it out to you.  Which means whenever all my imaginary friends come over, they are going to immediately look down at the floor for the line between the two kinds of planks because it’s like telling someone NOT to look at something.

Anyway, we got my office set up and it has been a perfect little space for me to work the past two days.  I’m still figuring out how to do this work-from-home-during-summer-break thing.  The kids aren’t quite to the age where they are completely self-sufficient yet, so they end up coming to visit in my office a lot.  I think it might be good for them, though.  They aren’t allowed to have screens between 9am and 5pm during the weekdays (a rule leftover from the school year that I’m continuing to maintain during summer, too) and not having me around to hang with them has pushed them to play more together and creatively.

I take breaks about every hour and try to spend some time with them.  And when they wander into my office, I’m always prepared with a candy bowl to bribe them into playing by themselves for just a little bit longer.  So far, it works about half the time…

It’s been trial and error.  Today, I got up really early and worked for a few hours before anyone else was awake, which ended up being really nice.  I’m a morning person and I am my most productive from about 6am-8am.  I can get almost an entire day’s of work done in two hours.  So, when the kids woke up, I was able to take them out to do some fun stuff this morning.  We went to the Regal Cinema’s Summer Movie Express to see a $1 movie this morning (we saw “The Iron Giant” and it was so bad we left about halfway through…).

Afterwards, we went to the World’s Largest McDonald’s playground for burgers and some indoor playing because it is ridiculously hot here in Orlando right now.  But the kids weren’t up there for more than ten minutes before they shut the play area down because someone threw up in one of the tubes.  So gross.  We packed up and headed to an outdoor playground instead after that, but it was so hot that we ended up just coming home and I worked all afternoon while the kids painted sun-catchers that I found in the $1 bin at Michael’s forever ago and stocked up on for summer.

Today was a swing and a miss for balancing happy kids and a productive work day.  But it wasn’t anything tacos for dinner and homemade cookies for dessert can’t fix.  And by homemade, I mean I dished the cookie dough out of the container myself.

So, tell me, imaginary friends.  What are your tips for being productive when you have kids in the house?  I need all the help I can get right now!  Thanks!

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