sober projects

one week after moving. have had every possible emotion — and since everything is like everything, then moving is like early sobriety. Some good sleeps, some nights where you hear everything new. Some days are sunny and hopeful, other days are damp and the central heat isn’t only yet. Some days you ask your husband how the space heater works (duh!).


Some days you think the living room is fantastic. Other days you look at the tiny kitchen and shake your head and say “this will never work.” (ALL OR NOTHING MUCH?)

other days, you’ll go exploring, walk past a do-it-yourself furniture place with classes and workshops, and i say to husband: you should make me a table… and then we go to the hardware store to buy a garbage can and a soap dish, and in the store i see these beautiful long counters made of oiled beech – you buy the chunk and then cut to suit.

and so then i think – i’m going to take that big long counter and whack legs on it. i’m going to create a kitchen counter to override this nasty tiny kitchen. i’ll put the big work table in my office, and i’ll make bread and roll pastry in there…

and the thing i create will be better than what i had before. even though the tiny kitchen looks hopeless. the thing that I will construct myself, the life i will build myself, will be BETTER than the old one.

then i got a call yesterday for a quote on a big catering job that will pay for the new counter.


the moral of the story (*she says to herself*) is that while individual moments may be weird, it’s working out better than you’d hoped. it’s still a story that is unfolding. the story is not over yet. I can add sober shelves and sober storage and sober support and sober spaces. I can construct the thing around me that supports me.

then i thought … hmm, i can get two big dark wood counters, bracket them together, whack legs on, and that can be my dining room table that seats 12 that i’m not afraid to use, that i can put hot stuff on, that we can really ‘live’ with (and on) …

sober projects: don’t like your tiny kitchen? construct something new. something better. even if you have to step into the next room to do it.



I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • The molding, the curved wall, the fireplace, the herringbone parquetry. So beautiful. What a stunning backdrop to keep crafting this inspiring sober life of yours Belle. Thanks for the constant insight. xx

  • Every project is now a ‘sober project’. Every day is a sober day. Sober is a Noun, an Adjective, Adverb, and Verb. It covers all the food groups as well. Great post Belle! Beautiful apartment!

  • Fantastic! For me it will be pulling up the 60″s shag carpet in the upstairs bedroom and refinishing the gorgeous circa-1940s hardwood floor underneath. I’ll be sure to post before/after pics.

  • So much light pouring in! It is beautiful, Belle! So is the message here…life is unfolding and there are ways to make it work especially when you are sober.