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Posts Tagged ‘Simplicity’

Photo courtesy of makelessnoise on Flickr

The other night, as we were settling into bed, we turned out the light.  Just then, we noticed a faint glow coming from downstairs.  We had left a light on, and one of us would have to leave the warmth of bed to trudge back downstairs and turn it off.

It’s so easy to overlook one small light when all the other lights in the house are bright.  Our lives are like that, too.

If we’re ever going to see the light, we need to turn on the dark.

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As I add less “stuff” to my life, I create empty space.  Hallelujah, now I’m free!!  …right?

There’s room in the house that might have otherwise been taken up by more toys.  Valuable real estate in the closet I would have filled with new clothes.  And, most importantly, time I might have spent shopping for more stuff.

Unfortunately, we must all face the scientific truth that “nature abhors a vacuum.”  When you create a space, it wants to get refilled.  In fact, it’s nearly impossible to stop this from happening.

Fortunately, I can choose how to refill that space.

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Today is St. Patrick’s Day. It also would have been my Grandma Jo’s 85th birthday. Because she was born on St. Patrick’s day, we have always assumed that this automatically makes us Irish.

Every year, I make sure to wear green, and my outfit is not complete without my little shamrock pin, a gift from Grandma Jo. I honestly don’t remember when she gave it to me, but every year when I pin it to my shirt, I think about her.

It’s a cute, goofy little pin, and it’s not my usual style. But I know I could never get rid of it.

What is it that makes something sentimental? Why is it that, of all our possessions, there are a few that we hold onto not because of their intrinsic value, but because of the memories they evoke?

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I feel like a fish out of water. Like a tourist in my own country. As our family no longer speaks the shopping language, we feel foreign to familiar surroundings. Personally, the thirst I often experience for bargain shopping was not on my palate this past week. Fear may be keeping me away from the stores, but I also feel a lack of desire already setting in. Though I still enjoy those things that bring beauty and function, my eyes are changing. Already. I didn’t expect it to happen so quickly. I guess I was ripe for this challenge.

Without shopping on our “to do” list, we faced lurking boredom straight in the face. Surprisingly, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. Actually, it was quite fabulous. As a four month old, Emma is already teaching us so much. We desired to give her a wonderful first Christmas, one that if she had memory, she’d remember. I felt a deep amount of pressure on my chest to provide for her over this special season. When we met with our pediatrician earlier in December, I asked if she had any suggestions for age appropriate toys. You know, ones that will compliment her development and maybe even flip on the switch to her inner little Einstein. (Side note: I wonder if Einstein ever used Baby Einstein toys?) With pen and paper in hand, Dr. Cannon smiled and said, “Your face.” My face? Hmm, I wonder where I can buy one of those in time for Christmas? Simplicity rings true again.

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Preparing for Nothing

Nothing new in 2011.

When Laura first told me about the personal challenge she and Jeremy are taking on next year, and invited Steve and me to join in, I didn’t need much time to think about it. I knew it was something I wanted to do.

Naturally, I had some questions – like what kinds of items would be exempt – but I knew we could sort out those details.  The idea of “nothing new” began to feel like a glass of cool water for a parched soul.

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