I used to consider myself a creative person. I spent my weekends in high school stretching out my hamstrings on the living room floor while watching movies in French and Italian (with. out. subtitles.) and reading any book by a female author before 1800 that I could get my hands on. I actively sought out things that exercised my right brain.
And now? I go to work. I work very hard and think a lot, but it’s about law and insurance and reading contracts and understanding what the heck my clients do. I come home. Don’t get me wrong, my job exercises that type A part of me that wants things to be organized and fast-paced and stimulating in the left-brainy way, and I really enjoy what I do. It’s weird for people NOT in my industry to hear me say things like “I really love insurance!” but I do. It’s a great industry to be in with a lot of good people, and I work for an amazing company who values their employees and takes pretty good care of them.
BUT. I can’t help always feeling like I’m letting that creative part of my brain wither away over the years. That’s what hobbies are for, I hear you saying. But I’m lazy and about to have a lot less time for myself because I am growing a little human who is going to flip my world upside down and take up every spare moment I have outside of work. I wish I could work in two departments at once – oh please boss? Won’t you let me write colorful words for you on Mondays and Tuesdays in Media/Marketing, and then handle my 400 emails Wednesday through Friday? Actually, while we’re at it, how about you just give me Fridays off so I have time to just be my diva self and go to farmer’s markets with my kid?
Ok guys, rant over. I must go supervise the ceiling progress.
I have long wanted to be a minimalist. When I see pictures of other peoples’ zen-like homes, free from clutter and unnecessary possessions, it makes me weak in the knees. Sometimes I think, “Well, yeah, if a professional photographer was coming to my house to take pictures for a magazine, I might somehow make all my clutter disappear too”. While I’m sure those homes in magazines hardly ever actually look totally clean like that, I think reaching that level of minimalism is totally doable.
If we had less things, there would be less mess to be made, and I could spend more mornings sitting on the couch and watching DIY Network. I mean, I do this in the morning anyway, but if we had less stuff and less mess, I wouldn’t feel so guilty about it. That’s the problem with stuff and messes—they create this background noise in ones’ mind: knowing you need to organize and clean, knowing you should probably get rid of the rust old mason jar lids, thinking about how you should clean up now before the day gets going and you’re too busy and hot to care… all of this mind clutter could go away if only I could let go of more stuff.
In light of this goal and since we are moving in the next few weeks, I have started going through drawers, cupboards and boxes, and practicing letting go of unnecessary things. I still hold on to some things that I know will likely never be touched again, but practice makes perfect right? It’s silly that I have to convince myself that we don’t need to keep all eight of the toothbrushes we’ve accumulated from dentist visits. What if someone stays at our house and forgets their toothbrush? What if I am doing some type of delicate cleaning that requires a baby-soft toothbrush bristle? For stuff like this, I have been saving one (maybe two) extra, and putting the rest in the Goodwill box.
My biggest challenge will be clothes, since I tend to fluctuate so much in size throughout the year. I would love to never own fat pants again, but I’ve gotten rid of bigger stuff before and gotten super mad at myself when I have to trudge to the store to buy more pants. And the whole “well getting too big for your clothes is motivation to keep in shape” argument doesn’t work on me, so let’s just let it go.
I’m not really a warm weather person, but there’s something very refreshing about the transition into Spring. In our area there isn’t much of a difference between Winter and Spring (or any of the seasons for that matter), but we have more light at the end of the day, it’s warm enough to pull out the tank tops and shorts, and there are Spring events going on every weekend. The summer weather promises lots of activities, and brings nostalgia for summers past when it meant no school and tons of time in the water.
In recent years, even though the summers here are very mild, I haven’t taken advantage of all that our city has to offer. I am literally five minutes from the beach and I may have visited there once or twice each summer since I moved here. Even then, I barely put my feet in the water and rarely am I there for more than an hour or two.
Apparently writing things down helps put them into motion, so I am publishing my intent to get out more this summer. Rather than hide from the heat inside my house, I want to go to farmers markets, hang at the beach, do weekend brunches, check out artsy events…and hopefully we will be in our new home, so we can spend lots of time on DIY projects. Our house isn’t even big enough to hold all the projects I’ve pinned to my Pinterest board, so at least some of those should get done this summer.