Sweeping Changes… Everything

August 17th, 2010

broom, originally uploaded by Schnittke.

Each morning in San Miguel de Allende, the streets are wet and smelling of Pinol (Mexican version of PineSol) as the homemakers start their day by sweeping their courtyards, front steps and sidewalks, and then rinsing them down.
They are not just cleaning, but changing the energy in their homes. Sweeping out old energy- literally- is a tradition in many cultures.
Stephanie Bennett Vogt (my space clearing mentor) also uses this simple tool in her practice. I’ve noticed some interesting things myself, after using my broom, whether indoors or out.
  • The entry to my home feels more welcoming.
  • My kitchen “feels” cleaner, and even a bit larger.
  • I’m more willing/able to work on a project that’s bogged down.
  • Sweeping for a while can clear up feelings of overwhelm.

Give it a try, and report back. I’d love to know if this works for others as well as it does for me!

TGIF #33

August 13th, 2010
Elephant Log- Tofino Beach

Elephant Log- Tofino Beach

Well, another Friday’s upon us. Hope you all have some fun plans for the weekend. Summer is just slipping right on by, isn’t it? This weekend, I’m planning a visit to the Jefferson County Fair. It’s a great way to catch up on friends & see all the wonderful things that go on in our little part of the world.

And I found the perfect thing to wear @ the Olycap Thrift shop. Not one, but TWO cowboy shirts with pearl snap buttons. I think I’ll wear the one with the gold threads… I know I”m supposed to be decluttering, but pearl snap buttons…

Here’s some silly stuff to get your weekend started:

I heart my library!

August 11th, 2010
Port Townsend Library

Port Townsend Library

I guess I should confess first of all, that I’m probably a librarian at heart. And certainly a power-patron. I have 3 current library cards- Pt Townsend, Shenandoah County & San Miguel de Allende. Some of the best times of my last year have been volunteering @ libraries. In fact, I noticed that right after I moved to Pt Townsend, the circulation statistics were way up- it made the front page! (Slow news wk, I guess…)

The library is an old Carnegie building, so it has a lot of charm, if not a lot of room. But they cooperate with the Jefferson County library, based in Pt Hadlock, so the collection is much larger than is apparent.

I know that most libraries have the cool on-line catalog, so that you can look up a book/CD/DVD & reserve it. I love walking in, showing my card & picking up a stack of books they’ve held for me. Almost as much as browsing the shelves & finding something it never would have occurred to me to order.

PT’s library has some extra goodies, though, thanks to the tireless volunteers and Friends. Many people come to PT for a short stay, so the library has rounders of paperbacks with pink stickers. They are donated books, and don’t even need to be checked out, just returned eventually. There’s also a rack of $1 cheap reads, and a bin of recent (donated) magazines to read, collage, whatever.

There are also no fines @ the PT library (for books- DVD’s are another matter), but there’s a conscience bank, so that you can fine yourself.

My latest library discovery is that with just a library card, I can sign up for Mango language lessons, so I’m working on my Spanish. Thanks, library!

What’s your favorite library service/hack?

Stumbling toward simplicity

August 7th, 2010

Decluttering/space clearing is a journey of discovery.

As I make my weekly pilgrimage to the storage unit, I bring back boxes of things that I had formerly thought of as essential to my happiness. Sorting through them, I realize that: I’ve been without them for over a year, I’ve been happy anyway, and they’re (mostly) going right back to storage at the end of October. So, just how essential are they?

Unpacking and sorting them, I uncover not just possessions, but old patterns and attitudes. Some are easy to discard; I’ve moved on. Others, I see as areas that need more examination. Just why am I keeping these things? What do they mean to me?  Are they truly essential? Is there another way to reframe this? Is there a way to gently release them? Or do I need to wait?

One of the challenges is that my life is in flux. How do I know that I won’t need X in my future? So another question is: if I do decide I need it, how difficult is it to replace?

I’m trying to keep William Morris’s advice in mind: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”

Here are some books I’ve found to be useful on this journey.

Do you have any tips, books or websites to recommend?