Sunday, October 12, 2014

We're Breaking Up

"Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content."   ... 1 Timothy 6:6-8


Today, after only 5 weeks, I broke up with HGTV.

Now, I could write an involved, complaining blog post about why, but instead I'll do this:

In my town there are long streets and whole neighborhoods of post-war houses, all Levittown-ish like this ...

... and this ...

They are smallish homes with boxy rooms, most with just one bathroom and houses sitting closely on each side. And the first owners? The returning soldiers and their brides? They felt thrilled and fortunate to move their meager belongings into those boxy rooms. Home ownership was an honor, especially after housing shortages of the Times, and was affordable on one income (mostly). And in my area many of these young couples grew old together in these small homes, never moving again.

Now, the real estate shows (there are many) on HGTV, to me, represent the polar opposite of that type of gratitude and simple, honest contentment (not to mention their representation of one reason poorer countries hate us so). And well, I just can't watch them anymore. I've got the reactions memorized, ("Oh! But we wanted hardwood floors, an open concept, stainless steel appliances, granite counter tops, 2 or 3 bathrooms with double sinks, a big backyard and ....") and they only horrify me, especially when they sow little seeds of doubt toward my own tiny, unpretentious house and the way we live inside it. 

Instead, I'm choosing that which will increase contentment with what God's given me and reminders that we keep our discretionary spending low enough so to remain out of debt and able to help others, also. So I broke up with HGTV and am moving on to something better.

Just so you know.  :)


"Being "contented" ought to mean in English, as it does in French, being pleased. Being content with an attic ought not to mean being unable to move from it and resigned to living in it; it ought to mean appreciating all there is in such a position."
    Author: G.K. Chesterton

"Oh, the fullness, pleasure, sheer excitement of knowing God on earth!"
    Author: Jim Elliot


For the record, I noticed that Nicole Curtis of Rehab Addict is also on the DIY network and I'm still very open to watching her. Both Tom and I consider her our hero because of her purist attitude, her love of old, imperfect homes, the way she doesn't spend a fortune to buy or repair them, the blood and sweat she pours into each one and the way she prefers to use inexpensive, recycled objects, often free from the curb.

I watch Nicole carry around bathtubs, knock down walls and pull off siding and tell myself, "If Nicole can do all that, at least you can get up and wash a sink full of dishes! Get up you lazy ol' thing....!"  


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Miss Dishywoo said...

Good for you! There are times I can view shows like this, or shows regarding any other topic in my life (cooking, health, etc.) and feel inspired. I can learn something and perhaps get a few ideas. But, other times, all it will do is make me feel discontent. So then I will do exactly what you did: realize that I need to stop comparing myself to what or how other people are doing things and refocus my mind. Great, well written, post.

Terra said...

Bravo to you for breaking up with that channel for shows about fancy schmancy homes. I have never seen it, but from what you say here I agree with you.

Judy said...

I have Nicole Curtis's show set to record to watch at my convenience. I'm through with all the others.

My preference in decor is the "collected" look, and those shiny new homes lack that. I don't understand it when they clear out everything the home owner has and replace it with stuff that has no meaning to the home owner at all. Why?

Any where are the books?!

Pam said...

I hope we live to see things come full circle on HGTV. I believe there's renewed interest in living simply. Both of our adult kids have started getting rid of excess "stuff" and are talking about seeing how creative they can be with smaller spaces. My favorite memories of childhood took place in my grandparents' homes. They were small, yet cozy and totally functional. Debra, so glad you can still watch Nicole Curtis--I'd really miss her show.

Anonymous said...

It's funny you bring this up because I just recently came to the same conclusion: I am too embarrassed to watch House Hunters International anymore. I'm embarrassed for the people looking for homes on the show who are American (like me) and go to other countries (especially Europe) and complain that the homes are too small! ... and only 1 bathroom! ... and not as much storage space! ... and look how small the refrigerator is! Oh no where will we put all our stuff? How will we survive?!

Anonymous said...

I stopped watching home decor shows and reading home decorating magazines(except country sampler) years ago. These shows sow seeds of discontentment and are much of the reason that people are drowning in debt. The whole sub prime mortgage nightmare in the U.S was no doubt in part attributed by people wanting things that they could not afford. Rather than be thankful for what they have, they lusted for more.

K.E. said...

When I watched that show (4 years ago when I had cable) and people were moving from their 2500 sf house because they had a baby and "needed more room", I would shout at the TV - have you actually seen a baby? They're tiny. They don't take up much room.
And also - you don't need more room, you need less stuff!

Judgment, I have it. Heh.

Bonnie said...

Now I have to look up Nicole Curtis! lol.....

Debbie V. said...

I agree!

Debra said...

Thanks, Everyone! I enjoyed reading through your comments and I must say I'm surprised so many of you agreed with this post! I'm glad I'm in such good company. :) Thanks again for your encouragement! Blessings, Debra