Spring is one of my favorite times of year! The season to open the windows and breathe new life into our homes. The time of year to purge what no longer serves us or feels heavy. Spring is about lightness, renewal and letting go of the things you no longer need so new things can bloom in your life.
When a home is too full there isn't room for new energy to come in. Energy can get stuck if we fill every nook and cranny of our living space. That's the feeling that keeps us weighed down and tired. When we think of spring we think of the days getting longer and recharging ourselves from the inside out.
When you do your spring cleaning this year and dust off your book shelf or coffee table be selective on the items you put back. Pick a few treasures that make you smile and get rid of the rest. If there's something you are really up in the air about, put it in a box and label it. After three months, if you haven't missed what was in the box, donate it to the thrift store. This works well with anything from clothes, dishes, shoes, you name it. If you've forgotten what was in the box you probably don't need it. Set the item free and let it bring joy to someone else. Our taste for things change and spring is a great time of year to freshen up your nest. Spring decluttering is our chance to decide if we really need twelve coffee mugs when we only use four?
The three questions to ask yourself when decluttering:
1. Do I love it?
2. Do I use it often?
3. Do I need it?
You won't need to ask these questions with every item but with the items that trip you up these are helpful. If you don't answer yes to any of these questions let it go! Your home and energy will thank you. I love the simple phrase Marie Kondo uses with her clients. Does it spark joy ?
Maybe at one point you did love it but now you don't feel the same. That's okay. Give yourself permission to donate it. Think about the joy it will bring another person. In exchange for the extra space you created there's room for something more significant to come into your life. It may be a new job, relationship, healthier body or hobby.
When you create extra space, more energy will come into your life and it will be easier to take a breath instead of feeling like your stuff is suffocating you. Start with a drawer or cupboard and when you accomplish that you will be ready to simplify larger areas like your kitchen pantry or bedroom closet. Spring is precious and short so when you're doing your spring cleaning do some decluttering while you are at it. You will be amazed at what blooms before your eyes, just like the new buds blooming outside your window.
I was having my morning quiet time this morning and I came across a journal post I had written almost one year ago. A year ago, we were living on the Oregon Coast in the sweetest house full of character and charm. When we moved to Oregon, we moved from living in the country in Minnesota to living in town. I'm a country girl! Living in the country is my sanity. So, I did what any sane country girl would do. I got 6 hens in my backyard in town. I felt like I had my own little farm in my yard. You can take the girl off the farm, but you can't take the farm out of the girl!
I'll share with you bits and pieces from my journal entry...
4-3-15 We are taking a trip back to Minnesota in 15 days. If you would have asked me a year ago if I would have ever taken a trip back there I would have said, "NO!" Now, I'm considering moving our family back there. I love my beautiful house, the simple coastal town and the relaxed life we have created, but I'm starting to go deeper and ask myself more pressing questions. I wonder if we move back to MN will we regret it? I think it will give us a lot more clarity, when we go back for a visit. I pray God gives us a sign either way.
We were definitely given a sign. The day before our departure a cute country property was listed for sale in a town I had never even been to. We looked at it and bought while we were on our trip and everything else fell into place. When we got back to Oregon we listed our property. At first it was the slightest whisper "it's go time". I kept thinking, I know God I'm packing. "No, it's go time". I heard you. OK, "IT'S GO TIME!!" We moved back to Minnesota a month later and I haven't regretted it once. I was adamant I'd never move back, but sometimes important questions need to be asked and followed with heart searched answers.
Spring came early this year and with that has brought new ideas. This morning I went out to feed my beautiful hens and as I looked down I saw the top to my bird bath. It had been forgotten about under the snow. The stand to the bird bath broke last summer. As the snow melted and it reappeared I wanted to give it a new purpose. I looked around in my chicken pen and there was a perfectly good clay pot not being used. I decided to take the clay pot and the top to bird bath and make a new bird bath for my wild bird friends. While I was at it, I decided to use the field rocks I collected to make a circle around my beautiful Ash tree where my feeder is hung. A tribute to the birds you could say. I wonder just how many times a day I look at that tree. The window above my kitchen sink faces that tree and I catch myself daydreaming as I watch the birds on the feeder. It brings a sense of calm, a minute to pause throughout the day. Starting my morning off in nature listening to the birds singing got my creative juices flowing for the day. I love when little projects unfold and I don't plan them for me that is the most rewarding. As I look at the birds eating from the feeder, I hope to see them splashing in their new bird bath. It's the little things in life that make us smile:)