Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Living life in 2017

There is so much going on in the world, so much change. But in times like this, I find I feel best when I keep looking ahead, moving forward, finding and doing things that make me happy. I feel like there are a few things we all do that bring us calm, like:

1. Taking pics of our surroundings https://www.instagram.com/p/BPObt3rgYQq/?taken-by=robinwrites
2. And our pets https://www.instagram.com/p/BO8-vX4A4zO/?taken-by=robinwrites - We adopted a dog, Ella, from the shelter in April, and she brings us so much joy.
3. Making good food https://www.instagram.com/p/BK1OQZmj0IX/?taken-by=robinwrites
4. Spending time with family and friends https://www.instagram.com/p/BNOYFH5jXyv/?taken-by=robinwrites - This was from Thanksgiving here at our house.

And even though all of those things are Instagrammed, it wasn't as much the documenting, but the doing of them that made the difference for me.

As the world becomes more automated, digitized, mechanized, and instant, I find more solace in the slow, the human connection, the beauty of crafts, good coffee, and the simple things.

Something I want to try: A face and body cleanser that takes away what it should and leaves what you need https://shop.motherdirt.com/product/face-body-cleanser/

Thursday, January 12, 2017

What happens when you slow down

I've been battling a cold that has lingered like some low fog on a frigid waterway. It required me to lay in bed a good part of each day, for nearly 10 days. This Sunday, my phone was stolen. I joked when my husband came home for lunch the first day I was "existing" without my phone:

Him, walking through door: Hi, how's it going?

Me: Oh my god, someone found me! I feel like one of those Chilean miners, hearing the first taps from rescuers.

We had a good laugh. Today is day two of the phoneless situation, and I think I may have a new practice brewing. While I have the options of checking my social sites via desktop, I'm finding myself not doing that. In my new world, no one can call me. I'm not getting texts. I can't send any texts. I feel lighter. If you want me, it's email or you could write me a letter.

Slowing down is good. It brings more of the little things into focus. And I think the space and time in which those little things exist is where we truly live.

Some of what I read and/or watched today:
How we could all be automated out of our jobs - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Pq-S557XQU
How millennials are viewed by CEOs along with other age groups, with input by a favorite of mine: Simon Sinek - http://www.afr.com/brand/chanticleer/millennials-only-one-of-five-generations-on-a-ceos-radar-20170110-gtp0c0 .
Brief history of the Royal Family - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNgP6d9HraI

Friday, January 06, 2017

New year, new crack at Minimalism

Photo credit: http://daniebester.co.za/

Image result for minimalist photoI may have gone too far when I lifted the lid on the trash can and heaved in all four highschool yearbooks. When I saw on facebook that the reunion was coming up, I posted a question asking if anyone had a digital version. Apparently the headshots are available, but not the other sections that I was most interested in.

One good rule of thumb as you minimize: get a scanner and scan paper stuff that you want to keep, even pictures. Alas, if I use my head, I can recall the images that were most important. And I don't really need them. I'm not going to frame them or sit them out... Will I have a moment of regret later in life, wondering about them? We don't know what tomorrow holds, so that's a wasted "wondering." It's all good.

I'm still keeping up with my guys over at www.theminimalists.com and listening to their podcasts. They can be repetitive sometimes, but simple messages are like that. I do benefit from the reminder of why minimalism can really add value to your life, even if the examples are similar. We surround ourselves with so much stuff and most of it is neglected, sitting in a drawer, or in a bin, or in the garage. So who needs it? Maybe someone else. Donate! 

Little by little, I'm whittling down my load. And it feels great.

A few minimalists I admire:

Courtney Carver here http://bemorewithless.com/ - saw Courtney when she was in San Diego. She's very inspiring.
Leo Babauta at https://zenhabits.net/
Sam Harris does this great podcast https://www.samharris.org/podcast

Happy new year to all.

Friday, April 01, 2016

There's no one to vote for, and this is not an April Fool's

Image source: https://www.pinterest.com/baretheatre/the-comedy-of-errors/

This image reminds me of the U.S. elections. Agreed? While I do feel the Bern, I wonder if he can break through the noise. Just for the "huh?" factor, I miss Ben Carson.

Happy weekend, all. And for a great April Fool's, visit http://www.theminimalists.com/t/
So very funny. I saw this and wondered if they had begun collaborating with Gwyneth Paltrow.


Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Easter getaway

On Easter Sunday, we went out to the Lodge at Torrey Pines for 24 hours of R&R. The low lighting and craftsman decor lulled us into a quiet, relaxed frame of mind. We stared at this view, sat in the steam rooms (separately, the spa is not co-ed), had a delicious dinner, and got warm by the fireplace in the room. We read, and watched the season opener of Selfridges. The Lodge is a special place. It smells like pine and fireplace. A seagull rode a wave of wind outside off our balcony, as golfers carefully aimed to make their shots. 

And then back home. To an even sweeter place.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

What remains

As the purge marches on, it makes way for the things I value to shine through. These things are harder to see when they are jammed amid a jumble of items. This pen was my father's; he owned it for most of his life, and then gave it to me one day when I admired it. He was great about that. He didn't hold on to "things" very tightly. It's a really nice little pen, made by Cartier, and quite beautiful. I'll always treasure it. This will never make it's way to the outgoing pile, at least for now. 

With that said, when it comes to sentimental items, there are other things that belonged to family members who have passed away. And while looking at my step-mother's little address book of folks I might remember/might not, I am going to let it go. My plan for these things is to do a blog post, or take a good hard look, as a way of giving it the final celebration it merits, and then say goodbye.

One thing at a time...


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Minimalist challenge in the house...

A man cleans up a pile of clothes and items left outside a closed Goodwill donation centre in Toronto on Tuesday.
Picture source: http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/goodwill-ceo-says-theyll-pay-newly-unemployed-ontario-staff-for-the-hours-they-worked

...or out of it, as the case may be. I mean, this isn't my hoard (how sad to see your hard-earned wares shoveled on some dirty street), but it might as well be. I have given my nieces about 25 bags of clothes over the past couple years. And now, I find myself compelled to donate/purge/lose items daily in this month of March.

My donation targets are greasing my wheels to success: items are going either to my nieces, who always appreciate Auntie's closet cast-offs, or to the Animal Rescue Thrift store in Clairemont here: http://www.aprl.org/contact.htm These folks promote vegetarianism, and help animals in need.

Of course my inspiration is these guys: http://www.theminimalists.com/ They are literally changing my life with each podcast and essay. One day soon, I hope to be free of the confines of all the crap that I believe is holding me down, holding me back, taking up precious space. There really comes a day when the stuff you own starts owning you. And I think I'm there.

Signing out...going to throw some other thing I thought I wanted into a bag. Interestingly, I see this post is the first in a full year. Last one was in March 2015.