It’s been a year, hasn’t it? Pretty sure there’s no one who hasn’t experienced some sort of upheaval or tragedy or just plain chaos.
Finding pockets of peace and calm seems to become more and more challenging. While there have been days/weeks when it’s all felt too much and I’ve just wanted to hide away indefinitely, I know that’s not actually moving me forward to become a person of resilience and fortitude.
Such a great word.
As this crazy year has moved from the long days of summer…and bonfires…and moving (yes, we moved in the middle of a pandemic – like the totally normal people we…aren’t) 😉 to the longer evenings and shorter days of Fall, I find myself orbiting hard around the simple things that have always brought a sense of calm and peace to our home. Or at least to my own soul.
- Candlelit family dinners every night – even if it’s cold sandwiches or deli pizzas
- great music playlists in our home and especially at dinner
- quiet mornings with the fireplace going – just gifting myself time and space to think in silence before the house wakes
- cleared counters and tidied living spaces
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1. The magic of candlelight
I’ve talked about this before here, so I won’t repeat what I’ve already shared. Only know that we STILL do this and it’s still a very centering practice. When the world around us feels like it’s gone mad with (insert whatever thing is bothering you here) I encourage you to give this a go.
Buy some inexpensive candles (I’ve got this box being delivered today) and holders.
Line them up down the center of your table.
Dim the lights – or even better, turn them off altogether.
Turn on some pretty music in the background (see next point) and see what I mean.
2. Music sets the tone
There are so many great playlists available to us! My top used streaming services are Pandora and Spotify. (My teen boys keep asking me to break down and pay for premium – but I’m kind of cheap). I’ve created lots of my own playlists over the years on Pandora but on Spotify, I’ve been lazy and just listen to playlists by some of my favorite people. Namely Myquillyn Smith and Emily P. Freeman. Here is Myquillyn’s.
I love both their seasonal playlists – including The Nester’s “Welcome Home”.
As a “welcome to your new home” gift . . . ahem . . . to myself (this is a thing….right?) I splurged on this super cool vintage-looking Lovely after seeing it in the Magnolia Journal. And I LOVE it. The sound is phenomenal and I can play anything on it: Bluetooth, CD, Cassette (really), radio, or vinyl. Plus, it looks great in my kitchen.
3. Life-giving mornings (aka quiet and peaceful)
Once again, this is something I’ve cultivated over the years, and without that time to sit quietly in the stillness and wake up and pray with a hot cuppa in my hands, my whole day feels “off”. You might recharge with an early morning workout session or by sleeping in longer – whatever it is that helps your day get off to a good start – do that.
In the summers, it’s sitting outside on my favorite glider watching the sunrise over the fields. In the chilly months, you’ll find me curled up in a huge blanket in front of the fireplace, watching the sunrise through the windows.
Whatever ways you find to give yourself some breathing room…partake, sweet friend.
4. Cleared surfaces and tidied living space
As mentioned above, we moved this summer…to a house about a third of the space of our old home. Oh yes. We actually did. It was a major downsize…but being out in the country now and on some land is absolutely, 100% worth it. Being forced to get rid of most of our possessions was refreshing and felt like a huge weight was lifted.
Less space means it’s easier than ever for clutter and all The Stuff to take over every horizontal surface. Which makes me CRAY. As in: cannot. even. handle it.
part of our/my nightly routine every evening is to clear off and wipe down all the counters after dinner. If I’m able to walk out and see clean countertops first thing in the morning, it starts my day off with a sense of calm instead of a sense of “ohmywordhowisthishotmessourlife”.
What things have you found that have made this year of craziness tolerable – or even enjoyable?
How are you coping?
And is it worth the $$ to pay for Pandora or Spotify premium?
Asking for a cheap mom friend.