This morning I did my usual Monday cleaning. I love Mondays because I know that this is the day when I get everything in order for the week ahead. This day, each week is dedicated to eliminating clutter, and clearing space.

While vacuuming our screened in porch floor, I noticed that some of the pots had tiny pests flying about them. I grabbed a garbage bag and placed the pots inside to take down to the recycling bin. I cleaned around what was now a smaller plant area and felt at peace. Opening up that much more space in our patio area allowed me to see that it wasn’t necessary to tend to these extra things.

I remembered how much I love minimalism. The simplicity of open spaces, absolutely no clutter, and only what is necessary brings a sense of peace.  My husband and I are in our 50’s, own two beds, two desks, some lamps and a couch.  We haven’t bought a dining room table yet, and still enjoy eating meals on swivel stools at the kitchen counter.  I have my eye on a particularly gorgeous Scandinavian style, walnut dining room table with a glass top from a furniture company that I love called Rove Concepts. When our bills are done being paid off, I will purchase this for our home. 

I have been downsizing cookbooks that I have been collecting since my early 20’s. I have cut them back from around several hundred to 70. I intend on reducing that number even further. I refuse to buy Kindle books. I find that too time consuming and frustrating. I like the actual touch of a book, but If I haven’t used it within two years, I donate it. 

When we bought our home last June, we moved in with the prior owners paint choice upon the walls. It is a dark, khaki greige. The light fixtures were thick, wrought iron, and coated in dust. Their relationship ended in divorce. I am going to paint the walls with either a pastel or simply white. The lights will be modern and minimalist.

I used to frequent a shop in Michigan that sold used books. Once you entered the shop you were immediately enveloped in softly scented Japanese incense, the sound of a water fountain, and the gentle lull of angelic spa music. It was the most relaxing place I had ever known. The soft spoken owner shared with me that she would open all the windows every morning, burn sage, close the windows and burn incense throughout the day. Ever since then, this is what I do in our home daily, which makes it feel blessed like a sanctuary.

When you have less you feel better. It frees up time, space and peace of mind. I spend a great deal of the day either meditating, or in quiet prayer/reflection. I know that I cannot reach a certain state of tranquility unless my surroundings are pared back, clean and in order. 

The less you have the happier you will become. We can only take love with us when we leave.


A Nurturing Soul

I remember spending as many hours as I could visiting my beloved grandmother Yulishka. Just being in her presence made me feel so incredibly loved. She always had a certain quality for bringing so much joy into my life. Whenever I would go to see her, she would have freshly cut roses from her garden sitting on her table along with baked goods and tea. She would love to offer these small tokens for me whenever I would visit. As a young child, I was mesmerized by her positive enthusiasm, and the way she danced around like little prisms of light on water. Flowering cactuses always bloomed in her kitchen windowsill, and I remember how they had a certain glow that matched her smile. I wanted to stay immersed forever in her magical world of nurturing and love.

My grandmother Yulishka was a generous and comforting soul, and because of her my life has been spiritually enriched. Every day I can sense her smile, her essence, and remember the fragrance of her beautiful tea roses. At night while I’m asleep, she visits me. We sit at her table and talk, and then I am in her luminous presence once again. Sometimes in my dreams, she accompanies me on trips, or through various creative projects that I’m currently working on. But mostly it’s huge celebrations. Just last night she was with me again, sitting by my side in a boat on a calm sea, watching whales breach and softly sing.

Yulishka may be gone, but she continues to offer her love for me in many ways. She was the one who taught me to be true to my heart, and because of that I am now happily reunited with my soul mate. I am living a life by the sea in Florida, painting pieces of art that reflect the healing and positive energy that will forever be a part of me.