My high school English teacher – Ms Scott – was eccentric as hell. Her methods were unusual, and I had a rather difficult adjustment period to her and her strange ways, but once we got into the swing of things with each other, all was well…and I learned more from that brilliant, batty woman than any other teacher that I had. Not a day goes by that I don’t do something that makes me think of her….her effect on me has been very profound.
Ms Scott loved to analyze literature with us, and when she would ask us to interpret something, we’d trot out every big word we could throw at the page in front of us, hoping one metaphor or allegorical onomatopeia would stick (I know that allegorical onomatopeia is not a thing – so please don’t send me messages telling me that I’m stupid – it’s a joke….I’m in on it 😉 ). More often than not,we’d be entirely wrong, and we’d sound like raging idiots…the answer would turn out to be something very simple. Ms Scott would rail at us about the need to stop overcomplicating things, the dire importance of simplicity,and just how very beautiful that can be. Simplicity is beautiful, she’d repeat over and over…and it’s an idea that I keep revisiting in my life. I find that life gets too complicated, that the pace of the world around me just gets too much…and I feel swept away. But how do you simplify in an increasingly complex world?
I’ve been working really hard at life simplification lately. I’ve been saying no to more and more invitations, only going out when I really want to – and not just going for the sake of going. I’ve made it a practice to turn off my phone sound no later than 10:00pm, because I just need the time to unplug from the rest of the land, and be with myself and my thoughts. I have been reading more, watching TV less, and I’ve even gone so far as to cancel some magazine subscriptions lately, which is a shocker. While I love reading magazines like nobody’s business, I just find that I don’t have the time needed to keep up with all of them, and they clutter up the place. I’ve tossed out countless garbage bags of things I don’t use anymore (by toss I mean donated….I don’t want to be wasteful!), and I’ve even been sorting through the pantry to get rid of outdated food stuff (a job I loathe with every fiber of my being). Every day lately has had at least 15 minutes devoted to declutterization (not a word, but totally should be)…and I still have so far to go. I want to keep simplifying my surroundings, getting rid of things that I don’t truly need – because what’s the point in having them if they aren’t serving a purpose, right? 🙂 Simplicity is beautiful. 🙂
A few months ago, I had a bunch of work done on my house – carpet changed on the stairs, new flooring installed in the play room, and a new paint job…what a difference! I can’t remember if I posted some after pictures or not (and I’m too lazy to go and look)…but here’s what the main living area in my house looks like now: (DISCLAIMER: The light looks totally weird in these…I just took them, and I’m not sure what happened. The living room is super cute – trust me. 🙂 )
It’s not quite where I want it to be, but dammit if we aren’t getting closer! 🙂 The Wee One and I chose a new chair for the living room recently – it’ll be delivered this week, and we are SO excited!! 🙂 Here’s a picture:
I’m so happy with how things are turning out here at home…I remember hearing Oprah talk about the importance of turning your home into your sanctuary from the world – and, I don’t know about you, but when Oprah talks, I bloody well listen. (NOTE: You should as well) I have lived in this house for just over seven years, which is a record for me – I’ve not stayed in one place longer than two years since 1989. For reals. So this whole “staying put and making the house a home” thing is pretty revolutionary for me – and I’m kinda liking it. 🙂 I feel that this settling in, staying where I am thing is part and parcel of the life simplification stuff I was talking about – instead of doing what I always do, which is run/bolt/move on when things get tough and/or I get bored (and I’m sure as hell not known for my attention span, friends), I’ve planted my feet firmly on the ground, looked around me, taken stock of all that’s there…and chosen to try to live my life as best I can by looking in the face of things that I would rather avoid and hide from (and there’s plenty on that list, let me tell you!). I’ve decided that I’m not going anywhere, my darlings…it’s simply too beautiful around here to miss. 🙂