Another Reason to Shop Second-Hand Stores

As if there were not already a dozen excellent reasons to shop at second-hand stores. Here is one more: this delightful book mark fell out of a book I purchased at Goodwill this week.

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Losing Your Baggage

"My baggage!" "No! My baggage!"

“My baggage!”
“No! My baggage!”

Once you have had that first big de-clutter session, and experienced the excitement and freedom of being responsible for less stuff, you can get a little tingly just thinking about the next round. When you have been on the path for awhile, you notice that beyond the cycle of too much/release/freedom that entire new vistas open for you. Your freedom allows you to think of things in a new way. I had a conversation with a friend this past week and he was lamenting the experience of having the same fights with his wife, over and over. “We are carrying too much emotional baggage. And we know each other’s triggers.” “You don’t have to carry your emotional baggage. You can set it down and just walk away from it.,” I replied. My friend was intrigued and we discussed ways to disconnect from our emotional hurts and beliefs that do not serve us. If you think a home free of clutter feels good, imagine a heart cleared of fear.

Simple Tools

I remember reading a story about how NASA researched for years to develop a pen that would work in the anti-gravity world of space. They spent a lot of time and money creating a workable writing instrument. At the same time, the Russian cosmonauts used a pencil.

When I was a teenager, my mom told me that I insisted on doing things the hard way. Which probably meant not her way. But there is some truth to the comment. At that time, we had an electric can-opener, which looked something like this:

can opener

I thought it was ridiculous to use this energy-sucking device when we had a hand-held can opener that worked just fine.

I prefer walking to riding in a car (maybe because I have to drive so much for work.) I prefer raking the leaves rather than using a gas-powered leaf blower. Usually this preference saves me money and aggravation. The rake always works, doesn’t need repairs or fuel.

I don’t always prefer to do things “the hard way.” As mentioned before, I like my washing machine rather than beating the clothes on a rock. But I like to be mindful of the machines I invite into the house. Sometimes the simpler tool is the best one.

How about you all? What are some simple tools you prefer to more complex ones that do the same job?

2015 A Year of Gratitude

Here’s my resolution for the new year:

Before I complain about anything, I am to remember what I am grateful for. I will use my fingers to count, if I have to.

1) Housing: we have a comfortable, affordable home.

2) Food: we have easy access to inexpensive, healthy food. And expensive, unhealthy food too, if we chose it.

3) Transportation: we have a paid for car, three bikes and the opportunity for free airplane trips. Plus, we can all walk for long distances without difficulty.

4) Health: we are all reasonably healthy. We have access to excellent health care, should we need it and a way to pay for it also.

5) Enrichment: the kids are in school, we have a free public library, the internet for a small fee and the time to pursue most of the interests that we have.

So, if you see me open my mouth, then close it and count on my fingers….you will know what I am doing–counting my blessings.

piglet-gratitude2