Friday, 27 January 2017

Tiny moments of peace

I don’t normally write my blog post the morning of. I normally plan, write and edit. But this week has been an extremely busy week at work. I get home and I’m just drained. The only thing I want to do is crochet. And there were times I couldn’t even do that!

Last night, I woke up multiple times and my first thoughts were of work. I really don’t like letting work creep into my off duty time. However, I couldn’t help it. Even when I tried to purposefully push the thoughts out of my mind, they’d come rushing back. These big intrusive bully thoughts of work. *sighs*

When I woke up to really start my day, I decided that I would do my best to create tiny moments of peace. So as I was waiting for the water to boil to make my coffee, I sat in the calm and dark living room lit only by the warm yellow light of a little lamp.

Then I walked slowly to my car, stopped before opening the door to take a deep breath and appreciate the mild winter air. So Mother Nature is supporting me in my quest for peace today.

In the car, I didn’t turn on the radio. I drove silently to work, stopping only to fill up on gas. Whenever I could, I drove at the posted speed limit leaving more than enough room between my car and the one in front of me.

Then I, again, walked slowly from the parking lot to my office building. People were rushing past me in a hurry to get to work. But not me. I’m in earlier, but I’m determined for this day to be a mindful day.

It’s easy when I get stressed for me to neglect my health. I’m drawn to cheap and easy fast food. But treating myself that way only makes things worse. So another thing I will do today is to take my time and make it a point to eat as healthily as I can. 

Today, wherever I can, I will find or create tiny moments of peace.

Friday, 20 January 2017

Breakfast at Tiffany's

Last Sunday afternoon, Mr. Romantic and I went to see Breakfast at Tiffany’s at a local movie theatre. It’s one of my favourite activities that we do!

Even though I’ve seen this film before, somehow it was a different for me this time.

As I was staring up at the screen at the flawless Audrey Hepburn, I couldn’t help but admire her very simple, yet very stylish and timeless wardrobe.

Oh I know I’m not the first to write about Audrey’s fashion sense. She’s pretty much a fashion icon!

I noticed how minimalistic her wardrobe was. At least, in this film. In many scenes, she was wearing the same black dress. However, just by changing her accessories, it made it look like a completely different outfit. I could tell that what she was wearing was of good quality.

That’s really the key, right? Have only a few simple, classic, stylish, timeless, good quality pieces, and have fun with your accessories.

So, I’ve been inspired (again) to rethink my capsule minimalist wardrobe (again).

I have to admit that I haven’t stuck to my goal to create a minimalist capsule wardrobe. But that’s fine, as long as I get back on track.

I really love Audrey’s style. However, I won’t completely imitate or try to replicate her style. But I will use it as inspiration.

Until the end of January, I’ll put on paper what I want my minimalist wardrobe to look like. I’ve somewhat done this before when I wrote about carrying on with my carry-on. So, it shouldn’t take me too long to do.

In February, I’ll take action and purge out of my wardrobe what doesn’t fit with my plan.

In March, I want to finalize my minimalist capsule wardrobe because that is what I want to bring when Mr. Romantic and I go to Europe. I think March should be a good month for this since stores usually have their spring clothing lines out by then.

Who knew that an afternoon Breakfast at Tiffany's with Mr. Romantic would lead me back to figuring out my minimalist capsule wardrobe... Inspiration is everywhere!

Friday, 13 January 2017

Refocus

Well, I wrote a whole blog post on New Year’s resolution, but I lost it. So now it’s post day, and I don’t have anything prepared. So without much thought and editing, here’s today’s post:

This year, I didn’t make a new year’s resolution or wanted to take on a challenge for January 1st. Now that we’re almost mid-way through the month, I kind of want to take on a challenge.

Dealing with life’s ups and downs, moving in with Mr. Romantic, and becoming crochet obsessed has left me feeling a little off of my minimalist path. So I feel like I need to do something about it. I don’t want to have my minimalist member card revoked!

Remember near the end of last year I had intended to start a series on how to be a minimalist and ended up posting just Part one? In that post, I told you that before you take any physical action on how to be a minimalist, you should dream of your perfect life. Well, I’m going to take my own advice. 

Dreaming is one of my favourite pastimes. I had dreamed up my perfect life many times before, but circumstances have changed and those dreams don’t fit anymore. Now I have new people to incorporate in my dream; Mr. Romantic and his kids. So, time for a new one!

Now for this post, I’ll keep things at a bit of a high level. For myself, by myself, I’ll go into more detail for each of these points. But I wanted to give you a little example of what I mean when I say dream of your perfect life.

My dream life:
I live in an uncluttered, tidy, calm, and beautiful home with Mr. Romantic, his kids and my daughter. We eat our healthy family meals at the dining room table. We travel to places near and far. We visit museums, art galleries and historical sites, and take part in local cultural events. We are physically active and regularly take advantage of our region’s nature by hiking and canoeing in our national and provincial parks. We go camping as often as we can and want. I read at least 6 books a year, alternating between non-fiction and fiction. I write every day. I’m learning a third language. I walk at least 30 minutes a day, every day. I sit still at least 10 minutes a day – no talking, no reading, and no media (social or otherwise). Mr. Romantic and I take time to connect with each other daily. My finances are in order.
So that’s what my dream life looks like. The cool thing is that I already do many of these things, to a certain extent. All I have to do is to work towards being more consistent.

So there you have it. Dream your perfect life and we’ll touch base next week for How to be a minimalist – Part two!

Friday, 6 January 2017

Bring home to work

I love being at home. I try to make it a peaceful retreat. Since I’ve moved in with Mr. Romantic, we’ve been working at pairing down our belongings so that we’re left with just what we truly love or need. Although we still have much work to do, I’d almost always would rather be home than anywhere else.

So it makes it hard for me to go to work. I have to leave my nest for at least 10 hours a day (including the commute and time spent in my cubicle). Being out in the chaos of the world is stressful. So I try to bring a little bit of home with me to work.

For example, I keep a set of utensils at work so that I have sturdy metal utensils to use, just like I would at home. I never have to worry about utensils when I pack my lunch. I know I have everything I need to eat whatever I bring. It’s obviously also better for the environment. This way, I’m not contributing to the plastic environmental problems.

I also keep a little tea pot and cup set and various tea flavours at work so that I can have afternoon tea. This delicious little ritual helps me relax, and helps ground me.

Another one of the rituals (or chores if you will) that helps make me feel at home is cleaning. I don’t like cleaning, but I like the results. I like the harmony it brings to my environment and to my life.

I keep a dish-cloth and dish-towel at work so that once I’m done eating my breakfast or lunch, I wash the empty containers and my utensils. This is beneficial for two reasons.

Beneficial reason number one, washing the dishes makes me feel like I’m at home. The smell of the dish soap. The warm soapy water. It’s comforting.

Beneficial reason number two, it means less work for me at home. I can just put the clean containers away in the cupboards, or fill them with the next day’s lunch.

These are just little things that make a difference for me. I have to spend so much time at work away from home; I might as well try to make it feel as homey and as comforting as my government office can be.

So if you can't just stay home or work from home, try to bring a little "home" to work.