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My basement is a mess. We cleaned it out after Christmas – you know, the usual “time to put all these Christmas decorations away, but first we have to clear out all of the other junk that’s accumulated since then” kind of clean out? In those moments, I can’t help but think, “Where did all this crap come from?” I mean, does anyone else turn their back for a minute and find that their basement junk multiplies?

Just so you get a more complete picture: we opted years ago not to finish our basement. Sort of like deciding to only have two kids - we said our house (family) was big enough and we needed more storage space (quality time) rather than more living space (mouths to feed). So even though it’s kind of a dump, it’s pragmatic. There’s a corner big enough to serve as my workout area and don’t forget the other corner, where my husband brews his own beer. We also have a Ping-Pong table and an entire painting/craft supply area. Not to mention it’s the perfect place to store a 50-pound bag of dog food and leftover Halloween candy, so I don’t eat it.

Anyways I have to admit, at this juncture, it has gotten a bit out of hand. So in order to inspire myself, I started a Pinterest page…but now I’m not so sure that was a good thing. What began as simple fact-finding fun turned into full-blown Pinterest envy. Whose basements are these anyways? Drop ceilings, recessed canned lighting, and plush carpeting. Full bars (mahogany, no doubt) and seating for eight of your closest bar flies. Wine fridges with their dual-zone climate control so your Pinot Grigio is always the perfect 38˚. Theater-style seating and a full bathroom…including a shower. C’mon, man! I mean, a shower, in your basement? This is blatant basement bullying - flaunting your bravado all over the place for everyone to see – the stuff “my house can beat up your house” is made of. I ask those people, “Do you think that makes my basement feel good about itself?”

Wait a minute, it just occurred to me. Maybe you have that sort of basement…maybe you have a 60-inch flat screen and Lazy Boys lined up just in time for a weekend Netflix marathon. In which case, we can’t be friends anymore. Just kidding – I’ll be over in 15 with a nacho platter and a not-so-perfectly-chilled bottle of Pinot Grigio. And maybe one day, if you’re lucky, I’ll invite you over to mine so we can eat stale Halloween candy, while I beat you at Ping-Pong.

about the writer Tiffany Schultz, picured above, resides in Sugar Grove with her husband, two kids and Shih Tzu. While seeking balance between her dueling roles as wife, mother, daughter, friend and professional, Tiffany spends as much time as possible daydreaming on her screen porch. She also enjoys cooking, traveling and yoga and hopes to one day learn Italian and make the perfect crème brulee.