Just Enough

I am good with just enough today.

The house is almost picked up.  There is just enough done to enjoy Christmas day.  The important parts are cleaned up.  We can cook.  There are places to sit.  I am not going to spend today becoming exhausted and stressed out trying to make everything perfect.

Perfect is not happening here.

There is plywood and boxes of tile and paneling and…lots of other stuff everywhere.

Wedding decorations and check-lists are stuffed in every nook and cranny.

Christmas has exploded and landed on every flat surface.

That’s okay.

This year I am determined to remember that my house is not me.  It does not tell the full story of who I am.  I am going to focus on what is most important.  I am going to do just enough to get the job done.

I am not going to lose my cool over undone lists.

I am not going to get so tired that I don’t enjoy myself.

I am going to prioritize and let the rest go.

The perfect holiday has nothing to do with all the ornaments being on the tree or the house being spotless.

It’s all about the smiles and memories.

On a decluttering front…I let go of a whole lotta wood and building materials that had been stored in the tool room (2nd master bedroom closet) and in the new apartment area,

I had held onto it because it had potential. It “might” have been useful for “something”.  That thinking is good up to a point, but when the objects’ potential interferes  with my potential, I need to let go.

Those piles of wood have been moved countless times during the renovation projects this year.  Enough.  It is gone and I felt great relief at it’s leaving.

Once again, why is it so hard to let go of things? Why is it so hard to choose simplicity over things?

Today is not the day to worry about the mysteries of the universe.

I am going to focus on what is important and joyful.

I am going to do “just enough” of the mundane and let the rest go…

It all depends on how you look at it…

Here’s some random observations (light bulb moments) from this weekend:

First, I participated in a fun “conversation” on facebook yesterday.  The thread was started by a friend.  She asked a seemingly random question which resulted in some honesty, some creativity, some “rabbit trails”, and some smart-ass banter.

Then she turned serious on us and revealed that what she was really talking about was habits.  The slow building of habits in our life as we seek self-improvement.  It can’t be done all at once (and shouldn’t be because that doesn’t result in true change).

When she first mentioned the word “habit” though, I have to admit that I first thought of “bad habits”.  Once she elaborated on her idea, I realized she was speaking of good habits.

Why did my thought process automatically turn towards the negative?  Am I truly a pessimist?  Do I look tend to look towards the “down” side of things?

I hope not and I will be watching for this trend in my thinking.  I’ve always thought I was a realist with naïve tendencies, but it’s probably an area I need to work on.  I’ll add that to my “bucket” list!

Next, I was taking out the trash this morning and was disturbed to see that the big can was almost full already.  We did have company over this weekend and I am clearing out some stuff, but trash pick-up isn’t until Thursday.

We used to recycle as best we could.  We don’t have curb-side pickup where we live so we have to transport it to another city near us.  I even bought nice bins from IKEA.  Then we couldn’t find a good spot for them in the kitchen.  We dropped down to one car and transportation was an issue.  The recycling started piling up in the kitchen and I just gave up.

I guess I saw it as an all-or-nothing proposition.  Solution:  This old white armoire in the dining room (awaiting a fresh coat of paint) has been repurposed.  The shelf is one my son found in someone’s discard pile.  The boxes are leftover from my business paper purge.  A spot for cardboard, paper, plastic, and metal recycling.  It’s not pretty, but it’s out of sight  and easily accessible.  I’ll recycle what I can and throw away what I can’t if transportation becomes an problem and the stuff outgrows the cabinet.IMAG0781

It doesn’t have to be perfect.  I can choose to look at it as “good enough”.

And finally –  Am I in this life for the journey or the destination?  I keep looking at the work to be done and thinking, “when this is done I’ll ______.”  (Fill in the blank with any number of plans)

When the house is de-cluttered?  When the laundry is done?  When the kitchen is clean?  When the garden is weeded?  When my inbox is empty.  When the canvas is completed. The work in my life doesn’t  get done.  I’m a homemaker (among other things).  When the work is done, it means I’m done (if you know what I mean).

Always looking towards the destination is a wasteful way to live.

I need to enjoy the journey.

Embracing Imperfection

You are loved just for being who you are, just for existing. You don’t have to do anything to earn it. Your shortcomings, your lack of self-esteem, physical perfection, or social and economic success – none of that matters. No one can take this love away from you, and it will always be here.   – Ram Dass

I am embracing imperfection today.  Doing what needs to be done, but not more.

Friends are coming over.  Sweep up the big stuff off the floor.  Don’t mop.  Pile the dirty dishes by the sink.  Don’t wash them. Take-out fried chicken is just fine.  Every meal doesn’t have to be homemade.

Outside finishing the chicken coop.  Hoping the rain holds off for just a little while longer.  Friends and family.

Allowing myself to actually slow down, then stop and really feel the contentment.  The happiness.  Is this what joy feels like?

For too long I’ve allowed myself to be distracted by the minutiae of everyday life…and missed the joy.  Always seeking perfection and the approval and validation that will accompany it.  Striving for that which only I can provide for myself.

Change is slow, but good.  And today is an accomplishment for me.

 

Happy!

Yesterday was a happy day for me.  Everything just seemed to come together beautifully.

My husband has been working extremely long hours and the overtime will definitely come in handy.  I am grateful for the added income.

He got off on time yesterday.  My oldest daughter didn’t have to work.  My son was home.  We all just hung out together.  My daughter who is at school even called to say she would be coming home on Sunday.

Everyone was outside working on a project that I’ll show you in just a bit, but first…

My son asked me to come out an join them outside.  I hesitated and he said “I understand you have a lot to do – don’t worry about it”.

Whoa!  How caught up do I get in accomplishing tasks that I miss opportunities like this.  I dropped what I was doing and headed outside.  The dishes still aren’t done and I’m okay with that.

Here is what happened:

A coop is being built for our new chicks.  These three are some that my sister’s hen hatched.  We aren’t sure what kind they are.  I guess we’ll find out soon enough.IMAG0667IMAG0630A baseball was tossed about.IMAG0640 (1)IMAG0646

The garden is growing like crazy because of all the rain.  We’ve barely kept ahead of the weeds, but we haven’t given up like we did in the past.  I’m slowly letting go of my “perfect or not at all” mentality.

Our first harvest of the season – purple and green beans, purple basil, peppers and an onion!IMAG0621 (2)

What a happy day – I’m still smiling.