Welcome to My Office




March 26, 2020


In the great pandemic of 2020 many of us are working from home. Since 40+ students now see me in my home, I thought I would write a post about the room that they often see me in. So in that spirit, welcome to my home office.

LEFT: Where the “magic” happens. Seated on the couch are two of my three newly minted teaching assistants. RIGHT: Another view of the office.

When we bought our house and moved in about 13 years ago, this used to be a coat closet (see pic below). This is the ground floor of a four-level split (although I don’t think it is considered “above ground” by Zillow) which basically consisted of a narrow hallway that appended the coat closet and a bathroom in the other direction. The floor, which I later learned was concrete, was covered in an industrial indoor/outdoor carpet—not a bad choice considering the door to the garage is on this floor.

Picture of the hall and closet where my current office is when we bought the house in 2007. The closet on the left is where my desk is now!

After living in the house for several years and working on various rooms, Lauren (my wife) and I decided it was time to tackle this floor. Lauren had been inside one of our neighbor’s houses and seen that they had turned the space where the closet was into a room; thus was born the inspiration for my office.

My friend Tim and I did almost all of the work transforming this into what it is now. We had to move the HVAC from the middle of the room to the outside wall, build the half-walls (behind the computer and behind the couch) to hide some original construction, put up the stone, and lay the floor. I did all the trim work with Lauren’s help.

Almost all of the design choices are mine (with input from Lauren). The stone wall was the first stone that I ever installed. It was easy to adhere to the drywall behnd it. The flooring is a bamboo wood that I got a great deal on during a closeout sale at Lumber Liquidators. The floor looks great, but it definitely has scrathches from the dogs. I’m not sure I would go with Bamboo again in the future.

The big shaggy looking rug comes from Ikea (rumor has that the GOT folks created John Snow’s fur cloak by dying a larger version of this rug). The two rugs under the computer are sheepskin which I found super cheap at one of the vintage places in Edina. The computer table was a splurge and came from Room & Board. (The two delivery guys who brought it in had on white gloves to not leave fingerprints on it!)

The outside wall directly behind where I sit. The fruit crates contain part of my comic collection. The picture on the wall is an artist’s rendering of Burton Hall where the EPsy offices used to be prior to moving to EdSciB.

The couch was a recent purchase from Wayfair (Enfield Mid Century Modern Loveseat). The bookcase was a throwback to my college days when scrap lumber and cinder blocks were the cheapest bookcase around. The fruit crates I got from an old bookstore in Dinkytown that went out of business and used to use them as book storage. I use them as comic book storage; good size plus I think they look neat!

It is not the most exciting office in the world, but it is mine. Thanks for visiting!