Sanctuary

Calm Home, De-Clutter, De-Cluttering, Frugal Decor, Frugal Ideas, Home, Simple Home, Simplicity

A cluttered house shows a cluttered mind.

Or, something like that. And the #struggleisreal. I bounce back and forth from not giving a damn about the mess to a full-on nervous breakdown at the drop of a hat because of the clutter.

I’m a full-time working mom, etsy-preneur on the side, a wife, mother, and step-mom rolled into one. Most days I feel like I need a magical cape to do it all. Thank God I’m learning to let a lot of stuff go and accept the fact that I am an awesome mom, wife, employee, and creative just as I am and I don’t have to strive to be the best and do it all every, single day #reality.

However, when I’m talking about my living space it’s a struggle. I’m not striving for Pinterest Perfection, I just want to be able to walk around without stepping on toys or getting tangled up in a human-sized telescope that never gets used – or the dishes at least half clean; enough to keep the fruit flies away. All the while allowing the kids and adults alike to have fun and enjoy our home. If you have lived with more people than just yourself for any amount of time – like one minute +, you know that the two ideals collide something fierce.

So, I’ve come to realize that when I just can’t take it anymore, it is seriously time to declutter and clean up.

That’s about it.

Another thing I love to do to get my dopamine and seratonin pumpin’ is to rearrange a little bit while I clean up. It doesn’t take much and it also costs zero dollars to move a few pieces around or get rid of unused furniture.

Since I’m obsessed with looking at other people’s decluttering and home adventures, I wanted to share mine from this weekend.

BEFORE:

PicMonkey Collage1

A hot mess, but it’s OK because we have been busy with Halloween/Fall/Dance festivities. I can’t come up with an excuse about the telescope…it just needs to go. As does the highchair. You know, things that make someone like myself go insane.

AFTER:

PicMonkey Collage2

After only about an hour, my home was back in order and I felt like a bazillion bucks. Brought the coffee table back in (it was away for a year because of my baby learning to walk and I was always freaking out about her getting hurt, of course), I moved around a few furniture pieces and changed out a throw pillow and blankets, also cut some greenery off a tree because I need some nature inside after all this rain, and naturally, vacuumed the crumbs and wiped smudges down.

It just feels so much better to come home to a little sanctuary. I didn’t have to declutter as much this go around, but you best bet that those little McDonald happy meal toys, unused toys, and anything broken got put in the trash. It helped knock it back some!

How about you, is your decluttering efforts paying off? What little things to do you do around your house to create more of a haven space?

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Start Over & Rebuild

Clarity, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Meditation, Minimalism, Minimalist, Simple Life, Simplicity, Sugar-Free Recipes

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Life’s experiences, choices, and decisions all have a way of compacting over time. One decision leads to the next, and so forth. It can become really heavy with time if we do not let go of some of the past, so that way we may grow and adapt as we age.

Some choices in letting go may bring up a tinge of guilt; perhaps you feel obligated to hang on to a relationship or item just because you spent time or money on it at some point. But, if you are in a rut, or are feeling weighed down by life in general, it may be time to let it go.

If something or someone is holding you back and no longer serving you, it’s OK to start over and begin anew. That is the beauty of growing, adapting, and changing. It is totally natural to begin fresh.

If you have met your match and feel like you are carrying the world on your shoulders, it may be time to shake it up a bit.

How to let go and start fresh

  1. Meditate: I’m not talking about sitting on a pillow with incense. I’m talking about getting some time to yourself to really inspect your insides and heart. You need to calm the outside world and internal noise long enough to really admit where you are and what you would like to change. This doesn’t have to happen in one day. As a matter of fact, it may take a really long time. But, if you are wanting the weight of the world lifted, you must put yourself first for a while and get clear on your mission.

2. Be Honest: Admit that you are not on the path you would like to be on. It’s OK, we all have been there a million times. Just because we are on one path doesn’t mean we have to stick with it if it’s no longer doing any good. Admitting that you are not happy with your current state is the best way to motivate change.

3. Dream: Having hopes and dreams can get lost in the chaos of a busy life. We get in that rut or that grind for so long taking care of families, jobs, chores, and children until we are buried under the dirt. It’s time to dig out and dig out fast. Give yourself permission to dream of where you want to be. It is reality that you can be that person if you begin dreaming again. Start a dream board, star gaze, focus on your desires with absolutely no guilt whatsoever for a change.

4. Start: Perhaps the scariest step of all, but when you get clear on the path you want to explore, and let go of extra baggage weighing you down – start. It doesn’t matter where you start because there is no perfect solution. Once you begin and have success, you may tackle the next obstacle.

5. Journey: Change doesn’t have to be drudgery. Plan to set yourself up for success. Start a blog or journal. Invite creative vibes and exploration in your journey. Call it an experiment. Write a book. You are free to change as many times as you wish. Welcome failure, that’s where you learn the most. And if you do fail (and probably will), keep going. Your only competition is YOU. The one looking back in the mirror. It’s not your friends, spouse, parents, or children competing with you. You owe it to yourself to have a little fun in life and be that person you want to be.

I wanted to talk about this because I have attempted change a million times in the past and failed. Then I let guilt get to me. I felt like I was letting everyone down. But, with a little grace and practice mixed with some perseverance and humor, change can be welcomed and fun. Life doesn’t always have to be so serious.

So, if you were wanting to make a change today – you know, that little voice that is saying disappointing things in  your ear all day every day? Tell it to hush and get to work.

It’s a new day, today. Seize it. And you know what? Tomorrow will be a fresh start too. That is the biggest gift of sunrise. A new day to change, make a difference, to love, and to enjoy. And when you lie down at night, take a breath, let it all go and start again tomorrow.

Don’t Cling: Let it Go

Free Spirit, Letting Go, Minimalism

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We all have so much that we have acquired: people, possessions, experiences, memories – and sometimes we feel like we own it all. Once we have it, it’s ours and we are responsible for it forever.

Perhaps it is our ancient, primal survival tactic of hoarding, hunting, and gathering, or maybe it’s just that it’s hard to let go sometimes.

It is hard, but for us to grow we need to understand that we must let go of yesterday.

We have permission to move on, learn, release, and grow.

We only have so much energy so we better not cling to everything. We must choose where our time, focus, and energy go wisely because we certainly can’t do it all.

Today, I will not cling to negative energy, drama, excuses, or mind games. My emotional well-being is on a pedestal as far as I’m concerned. I will choose not to be involved. My energy is saved for more important matters such as

love, relaxation and fun.

And it’s true: we can’t lose what we don’t cling to. Cling to the important, unmovable things that are seen and unseen. Let all that doesn’t truly matter go into the breeze.

Tell it thank you. That it served it’s purpose and it’s time to let go. Then move on.

How Will You Spend Your One Life?

Free Spirit, Minimalism

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How would you answer the question:

“So, tell me how you plan to spend this one beautiful-crazy life of yours?”

It doesn’t matter where you are in your life. The question is: how are you going to spend it?

For the last 30ish years of my life, I’ve never really given this question serious thought because I’ve been spending my time on auto-pilot and following the crowd.

For reasons unknown, when we meet a stranger we don’t really want to know anything more about them than where it is they work and where they rank on the status scale.

Well, we all have the ability to just show up at a job and work the cog in the wheel now don’t we? All of us can just jump in line and go with the crowd.

It doesn’t really set us apart much more than the actual name of the company you work for.

The question should really be deeper:

How are you going to spend this one life of yours?

Are you going to spend it behind a computer screen? Are you going to continue going to your auto-pilot job to stay afloat? Will you continue to dread your alarm clock and traffic and stress?

Or, can you realize that today is a clean slate? We can change directions and go after what are heart is telling us to do.

You don’t have to do the same thing you did yesterday. You can be someone new: that someone that you always wanted to be. That can be you. That can be me, too.

Financial Boss: Part 1

Clarity, Debt, Financial Boss Series, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Minimalism, Minimalist, Money, Simplicity

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It totally happened yesterday.

I am now in charge of my finances aka THE BOSS.

Financial advice is totally rampant on the internet because so many of us live reactive to our money.

I want to share with you how I went from reactive to proactive in 24 hours. Sounds to good to be true? Well, it is and it a’int. It was a long day yesterday getting my finances in order:

but I went to bed PROactively in charge of my money last night. 

I’m going to break up this explanation in parts because it is a little lengthy. I want to share my personal history and background and then tell you how my strategy changed drastically.

It’s not a magic potion or fix-all. It’s just a financially lazy, simple girl’s way of shaking up the way I do things and TELLING my money where to go.

You may be in the same place, but scared to make a change. It is kind of scary, but when you have your mind made up that you must do things differently, take risks, and are in an energetic, positive mental state: It can be done.

So, follow along if you want to hear about it. It’s time for change and it’s time to be the boss.

For starters:

That picture above was my stack of credit cards as of yesterday. Wow. Let’s just say that it has reduced drastically as of today, only 24 hours later.

We run things, Things don’t run we

Free Spirit, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Minimalism, Simplicity, Yoga

I have this really amazing playlist I made for my yoga practice. It’s not ocean sounds and birds chirping like you would imagine (although, I love that too and need the zen sometimes as well). This particular list has songs like:

Radioactive

Boom Clap

Holla Back Girl

We Can’t Stop

I’m So Fancy

You know, just your basic ‘gettin’ into it’ music. Anyway, I am who I am and I like a little funk and pop while I fold into a pretzel sometimes.

In the middle of my side crow pose, We Can’t Stop by Miley Cyrus came on.

Now, what do me and Miley Cyrus have in common you may be wondering?! Not a damn thing. Except the lyric:

We run things, Things don’t run we

It hit me then that my things: whether it is my material possessions, stress, guilt, shame, fear, frustration, other people’s behaviors, finances: have all been ‘running’ me for far too long.

In truth, I AM THE ONE WHO RUNS THINGS, not the other way around. I am taking the power back to my center. I am taking control back over my heart and mind. I am choosing what I do and what I allow in.

This shifting is monumental and also necessary for change. 

So, thank you Miley for allowing me to get deeper into my poses, have some fun while I sweat, and reminding me that it is WE who run things.

Things to Remember as You Change (for the better!)

Clarity, De-Cluttering, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Letting Go, Minimalism

We all have a tendency to build emotional walls, develop coping mechanisms, and hone in on our fight or flight survival skills. I’ve learned that with time, all of these things defenses build up emotional plaque.

I am not the same person I was 10 years ago, and neither are you. Our experiences have changed us – either for the better or worse. Perhaps we have baggage and negative energy we have bottled up inside. It never gets dealt with because we don’t make or have the time for it.

As we shift and change through time, this bottling up can become a very stressful situation.

If we let it go long enough without dealing with it and changing our behaviors, issues will eventually surface. The daily grind can become overwhelming simply because our inner primal instincts tell us to run from the lion, even if there is no lion.

This is the effect of busyness, stress, frustration, clutter, and simply not taking care of ourselves.

Because my health is now suffering, it is time to do the work and deal with it.

I have attempted to de-clutter my possessions and simply for many, many years but I always end up stuck and giving in. I will donate, then binge trying to fill the void.

Life is full of lessons and I have learned a few things so I can adapt and change:

1. Take it slow. Although I am doing a panicked de-cluttering of my possessions, I am really feeling and experiencing the weight this has on me this time. Instead of just taking my unused possessions out of my living space and downstairs for later or labeling it ‘may use in the future’ it goes straight to the donation center.

2. Be patient with yourself. When we face reality, it can be tough. Especially if you are like me and have just pushed issues inside without the time to deal with it. All of it will eventually surface. It’s worth noting, looking into, and letting go.

3. Celebrate. Yes, de-cluttering and simplifying can be daunting. You will come to realize a lot more about yourself than you may even be ready for. But, this is time to celebrate! You are facing your demons and changing for the better. It’s a celebration!

4. Grace. You and I have made a lot of mistakes. We are human after all. But, everyone has and everyone has to own up to it. By hiding behind the curtain of denial, nothing is accomplished. We can not change unless we bring it all to the table. I’m learning with time, that I forgive myself. Not everything is my fault; whether it was someone else’s doings or my own: what happened has happened. There, I said it. Now, let’s do something else.

5. Live for now. What happened yesterday doesn’t matter anymore. You learn from it. You have permission to let go and be your best today. Tomorrow hasn’t happened; and quite frankly, may not ever happen, so let’s not worry. Let us live our lives for today in this moment. We better make dang sure we live the life we want because we only have 1 shot at this.

You will know when it’s time to make a drastic change. You may be lurking here for some inspiration or someone to relate to. That’s what I do. Know that you can’t change until you are ready to do the work. Start now. Be the person you want to be. Don’t focus on the end result, focus on what you do right now and what your next decision will be. All the littles make the bigs in the end. It takes daily tries and choices – not just one big bang! Get that momentum and do it.

That’s where I’m headed; imperfectly perfect.

Desiring Heart

Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Meditation, Minimalism, Simplicity

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Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Let’s not continue being insane, lost, chaotic: a feeling of chasing rainbows and wishing. We all can make our lives align with our true soul, if we just listen to our hearts and take action. It’s a matter of taking the first step in the right direction. It’s about saying no to the petty and yes to the good. It’s about clearing the clutter and the stuff that holds us back: whether it be physical possessions, mental negative chatter, or relationships that no longer serve us. One step at a time. One moment at a time.

Let’s take back control of our lives and live free. We can, if we choose to. Let’s live for today – forgetting yesterday and allowing the future to unfold as it’s divinely supposed to.

What do you not want in your life today?

I don’t want:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Useless work
  • Frustration
  • Exhaustion

I want so badly:

  • Clarity
  • Lightness
  • Happiness
  • Space
  • Freedom
  • Love

Today I will let go of the chains that bind me to yesterday. I will let my wings sprout and make the right choices that align with what I want.

I will let go of stress and the things that I can’t control. I will rest when my body tells me to. I know that I am in control of my reactions and I will choose to make the best decisions each and every moment. When I make a mistake; I will let it go and learn from it. I know that each moment is a new chance for my life.

Let’s embrace today, shall we? Let’s do something that we’ve always wanted to do. Let’s lose the guilt that tells us that we are not exactly where we think we should be. We are where we are supposed to be: right here, right now, with the hurt, sadness, frustration. See it for what it is and try to let go. Envision happiness and peace.

The 4th of July weekend is a perfect time for me to appreciate the freedom that I do have right now. It also makes me hopeful for the freedom I can accept for myself if I invite it into my life.

It’s an open invitation. Welcomed. Safe. Secure.

Don’t Let Happiness Depend on Something You May Lose

Clarity, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Minimalism, Simplicity

One thing that is for sure: everything in life changes.

How often do we depend on routine, other people, jobs, money, and stuff to make us happy? I found myself doing this pretty much my whole life. I was happy if my circumstances were, as I viewed, happy.

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I felt like my life would be complete when I got a job out of college.

I lost it.

I felt like my life would be better if I got married.

Almost lost it.

I hoped I would be a true grown-up when I bought a house.

Nearly lost it.

I thought that my clothes and hairstyle would make others love me more if it was current and ‘in.’

I am getting older and losing it.

I thought that furnishing my home with cute stuff and wall hangings and furniture would make me happy.

It breaks, runs down, and I lose it.

These things do not make you happy. Happiness comes from within. It comes from the way we view our circumstances. It comes from being content with what we have already been given, and it comes from the brave ability to let go of things we can’t control.

And if you are like me and have tried your dangdest to control your life, you have probably already found out:

You can lose it.

It’s time to take a real account of our stuff and people in our lives and determine if our priorities are in order. It’s too easy for chaos and confusion to rule our lives. But, what’s the most important things?

  • Family
  • Health
  • Peace
  • Joy
  • Wisdom
  • Relaxation
  • Clarity

None of which comes from a perfect situation in which your mind dreams up. Life’s lessons, experience, and the ability to flow and enjoy make a person rich. Rich in heart and rich in spirit.

We are not guaranteed tomorrow. There will be trials but there will also be joy. Don’t be afraid to look within and to take change and discomfort with grace. Find your priorities and do that. Forget the rest.

That’s what I am going to do.

Coming Home Blend: Essential Oil DIY

Essential Oils, Free Spirit, Hippy Life, Minimalism, Simplicity

unnamedOne of the best feelings in the world is coming home to a clean, fresh home.

I was away on a weekend trip where I was low key and packed lightly. Being away from my home is fun and makes great memories, but when I get home I am ever so grateful.

Before I leave I make sure:

  • Dishes are clean and put away
  • Toys, clothes, clutter is in their spot
  • Clean sheets are on my bed
  • Fresh towels and bathroom are clean
  • Smelly-goods: that the house smells fabulous upon arrival

Being welcomed by a calm home is peaceful.

The hustle, bustle, and travel time away drains us of our energy. The last thing on our minds when we get home is to have a to-do list. Our minds and body can relax if when we arrive our home is happy and clutter-free.

Coming Home Essential Oil Blend

  • 5 drops lavender
  • 5 drops frankincense
  • 5 drops lemon

This is the blend that I whipped up as soon as I got home. I put it in the diffuser and let my spirit be nourished and relaxed. It was a little woodsy from the frankincense, fresh from the lavender, and clean from the lemon.

My home smelled lovely as I gave into the exhaustion and enjoyed being where my heart is.

Then, I brought out my yoga mat, took deep breaths, and rejuvenated my senses as I parted from the weekend and welcomed the upcoming week.