simplify

 

2015 is all about simplifying.

life got a lot overwhelming in 2014. overwhelming to the point where you’re holding on to your gratitude for your health, having food to eat, + the well-being of those you love, wondering what the next challenge is going to be, + not sure how much more capacity to deal you have. so by the end of the year i found myself yearning for some simplicity, some zen, some space to recharge + process the entirety of the previous year.

+ in simplifying, i’m focusing on the commitments i make. i tend to take on too many things – make too many commitments. i think that’s an affliction most of us have. as a result i find that i do nothing really well. + i’m feeling a little tired of the mediocrity that breeds. i can’t do it all, no matter how much money i spend on planners, how many lists i make, or how much sleep i miss out on.

 

 

so i’m focusing on doing less, so i can do less better. one commitment at a time. do it well. i’m learning there’s a real discipline to sticking to one or two commitments + not letting additional wants, needs, feelings of “i really should…” start dictating how my days get filled up.

in addition to needing some time + space to recharge from last year, part of the desire to simplify comes from wanting to make sure i don’t take on so much that i leave myself with no real, quality time for my son + family. my husband + i brought him into this world + i am committed to raising him to be a kind, generous, self-sufficient, contributing member of this world. it’s going to be the biggest job i ever have + i will not do it well if i’m busy trying to time manage too many other commitments.

which means i am saying ‘no’ to a lot of things i would have normally said ‘yes’ to before. + the things i’m saying ‘yes’ to are on my terms. i won’t be trying to second guess what would be easier or more convenient for anyone else. this makes saying ‘yes’ actually feel good + i’m not reluctant or regretful about that which i say ‘yes’ at all.

this is me taking ownership of my life, what i want it to look like, + what i have going on in it. at the end of my life i will only have myself to answer to for what i have to look back on + how i leave it.

so, to sum up:

  1. make space for yourself, your thoughts, your emotions
  2. be mindful with the commitments you make

  3. say no if you can’t say yes with joy + certainty

  4. commit to your commitments 100%

  5. remember that it’s your life + you’re the only one who has to live with it right to the end. make it count.

a refresher on life’s perspective

i never get tired of these…

10 Life Lessons to Excel in Your 30s

1. Start Saving for Retirement Now, Not Later

2. Start Taking Care of Your Health Now, Not Later

3. Don’t Spend Time with People Who Don’t Treat You Well

4. Be Good to the People You Care About

5. You can’t have everything; Focus On Doing a Few Things Really Well

6. Don’t Be Afraid of Taking Risks, You Can Still Change

7. You Must Continue to Grow and Develop Yourself

8. Nobody (Still) Knows What They’re Doing, Get Used to It

9. Invest in Your Family; It’s Worth It

10. Be kind to yourself, respect yourself

the full article, written by mark manson, can be found here. it’s really worth a read.

 

something about winter…and other things.

nothing prompts thinking, writing, wanting to express oneself like spontaneous free time + a snow filled view…with sunshine. what a beautiful morning.

oh, + i’ve missed writing thoughts down. i’ve missed it a lot. the writing slowed to a stop right around the time that i found gainful + regular employment.

+ even though this special outlet hasn’t been far from my thoughts, i haven’t made a concerted effort to come back to it…until now. because i’m off work again. but this time due to a wonderful, beautiful, new baby son. + how i love his little self.

this morning has been a perfect combination of a sleeping babe, a hot shower, and a market run with coffee + sunshine.

just wanted to put it out there that we’re very grateful + feeling very blessed.

 

wonderful winter

today i woke up to the kind of morning i’ve been waiting for since the temperature started to head in a downwards direction.

it. is. snowing.

outside it’s monochromatic…black trees + each intricate branch tendril framed by the grey sky, small white flakes twirling + swirling until they meet the white blanket on the ground. it is quiet. it is peaceful. it’s still early enough that there is nobody outside to disturb the winter tableau i see out our front window.

this morning is so peaceful.

yet, i am restless. i should probably pull a snow suit over my pajamas, shove my bare feet into my barely-used-this-year winter boots + go run around with the dog. he’s prancing around, looking at me with a pointed “um, let’s get out of here” expression. at least, that’s what i interpret it to mean.

i love winter. it is beautiful, magical, + brings a quiet + peace to my heart + fills me with a sense of wonder that i don’t find with any other season. it makes me sad when people complain about winter + how cold + long the season is, as though we need to be catered to with warmth + comfort. i find a connection to our humanity + our history of living in the cold air that hits your face when you step outside + enters your lungs as you breath deeply. it makes me feel hearty + whole. it makes me feel invigorated.

it makes me feel alive.

once upon a winter

 

monday fave five

here are five things i’m grateful to my new job for…

No. One

steady paycheque. i won’t say stable job just yet, because it’s not…for several reasons. but in this ‘economic climate’ i’m grateful to be working + bringing a regular paycheque into our household.

No. Two

its location. my job is located in the downtown area – not in the core, but on the fringe of the downtown. literally on the ‘other side of the tracks’. + i’m able to see + experience this area in a way i wouldn’t have otherwise been able to. it’s an area in transition. it’s bordered by many shelters, soup kitchens, good will + salvation army stations, + is also being invested in by the city for improved infrastructure. seeing the changes is really interesting as the sense of place around the area evolves.

No. Three

learning new skills. the firm i now work for is a high-end residential design firm with a retail showroom. i’ve never done residential before. so i’m learning lots from a design point of view. + also learning how to deal with many different personality types – some more extreme than others.

No. Four

the people i work with are really funny + interesting, motivated + ‘get it done’ attitude type people. even though it’s really challenging, stress levels are high, + it’s incredibly fast paced, there’s a positive vibe between staff members for the most part.

No. Five

getting to ride to work with M in the morning. it’s probably a good thing we don’t work together anymore even though i enjoyed it when we did…but things are more interesting when we get to talk about our day instead of just knowing what went on. i love that my work day is bookended by seeing is face + being able to drive to + from work together.

monday’s fave five

thinking of everyone along the coast as this super storm goes on. i feel very thankful to be in an area that does not experience extreme events.

no. one

food. today was wet, rainy, cold + windy. not only did we have enough, it was filling, comforting, hot + soulful.

no. two

a job. i’m thankful for this new job i have started. today was a great first day. now, i’m exhausted + ready to sleep.

no. three

heat. our home is cozy. today is the first day that we’ve turned the heat on. two years ago M got me a heated mattress pad for christmas because i’m always so cold. i’m so looking forward to curling up in a toasty warm bed.

no. four

hydro. our power is still on. we have contingencies if it should go out. and i know there are many people who’s power has already gone out today. i hope that those without power are kept safe + those who rely on power for life saving services are being taken care of.

no. five

warm socks. socks have always been a super comfort to me + my tootsies. there are few special treats that come close to slipping on a pair of soft + fuzzy socks onto freezing cold feet.

hoping that people stay safe in the storm.

puzzle solved!

this has been bugging me every single time i have watched harry potter and the order of the phoenix – there is an arrangement of music that plays when harry enters the ministry of magic for the first time:

starting at 1:12

 

+ i have felt ADAMANT that i’d heard this music previously, but couldn’t figure out from which movie…i finally figured it out. turns out it’s not a movie at all, but from les miserables, + it’s not the exact same arrangement, it’s just so similar…

starting at 0:13

 

also, colm wilkinson is phenomenal.

anyways, happy tuesday!