Monday, October 20, 2014

An Archaeological Dig




Cleaning the basement.  This has been our focus the past week in preparation for the semi-annual "Big Garbage Pick-up" in our town.

The process showed us we don't need to keep all the cartons for every darn thing we've purchased during the past ten years of living in this house.   And we don't need items we haven't unpacked since moving here: bowling shoes, ski boots but no skiis, knick-knacks (when did we think those were pretty?).

Sure, we have the space to store everything we want to keep.  The basement isn't used for anything except storage.  And we have filled it.

But to no good end.  We have forgotten what is there, can't find it, if we can remember and now feel overwhelmed with the cluttered mess lurking at the bottom of the stairs.

We threw out an embarrassingly large pile of soiled cardboard and packing stuff, nonredeemable garbage.  And are waiting for the garbage pick up to remove it from our property.  Bless them for offering that service.

Anything good or useful is going to a organization that resells clothing or small housewares and donates the funds to charity. Anything someone else wants goes, if they come to fetch it; one person took all our wine making equipment.  A couple of kitchen gadgets we thought we had to have (but used once) are in new homes.  Recyclables will go to the appropriate depositories.

What's left?

We ran out of energy and ability to say yes or no to the choices by the time we hit the boxes of photos.  We'll save that for sorting another time.  The useless bits of wood and wall board will go to the dump when we can borrow our friend's trailer to haul the stuff away.  The 10 file boxes of paperwork from our past lives will require a call to a shredding company.  Hazardous waste, an old propane tank, batteries, empty paint cans will go to the HW pick up next Saturday in Riverview.

After the basement floor appeared again and we washed the dust from ourselves, we decided:
we will be discerning and disciplined about any new purchase;
we will remind ourselves that we already have everything we need;
we will enjoy the new found space in our basement and will not re-fill it.

The declutter process feels healthy and encouraging.

What's next?  The upstairs den, which is the whole top floor of our house.  It is a TV room, a reading room, a spare bedroom for company, a toy room and my knitting storage area.

Yikes!  Another dig through dust and stuff.

Now, we have a goal and are looking forward to seeing our way though the piles, to spacious rooms and to regaining control of unhealthy accumulation.

Who knows what possibilities will open for us?

New ways of being more responsible for our lives, and perhaps downsizing to a home with less space for unneeded junk.

We can do anything we want.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving Monday

  
Light shimmers 
 in the darkest times.


Sometimes we concentrate so hard on the darkness,
we forget to see the light 
until

suddenly, we are overwhelmed, speechless.
Gratitude.


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving weekend


and I am grateful for bright leaves


floating on amber ripples.


I am grateful for the ebb and flow of life,


for coloured carpets in the shady woods,


and for the small creatures 
who find nourishment
 there.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Fall Oranges 2014







Fall paints my yard orange.  Not everywhere, not everything, but enough to raise my spirits.  The colour radiates vibrant energy, makes me smile.





Monday, September 29, 2014

Autumn Reds 2014






Some falls there is an abundance of yellow, brown and orange but reds are rare.  This year the leaves are brilliant as usual and reds are everywhere. 


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Purple Finches at the Feeder








Their muted rose and tan match the colours of sedums and hydrangeas in the garden, and the weigela leaves turning toward autumn.  I'm stuck inside nursing a head cold, but still thrilled to be able to sit and watch the colours changing through watery eyes, between sneezes ... a Monet-like blur.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Be Careful What You Wish For

My neighbor drives me nuts.  

He plays his music at an outrageous volume; in winter I can hear it through closed windows and hefty snow banks.  In summer, he floods my yard with noise.  We have to speak loudly on our own deck to have a conversation.  

I cherish music, and wouldn't mind sharing his tastes, if I could hear anything but the bass. He must love bass; it overpowers the words, the melody, everything.  I can feel the thumps reverberating in my skull and down my spine.

But, he does have a beautiful yard, and it is a pleasure to walk by his gardens.

I complained to a friend about the pounding sound pollution and voiced the wish that he would move. She cautioned me to be careful what I wished for.  And she was correct.

The neighbor sold his home and there are new folks living in the noisy house with the gorgeous yard.  All is quiet now, feels peaceful, except for last week.  The new neighbor went out to his yard with some friends and together they began ripping at his trees with a hand saw and trimmers.



What a heartache to watch him cut down a saucer magnolia.  Does he know how challenging they are to grow in our climate zone?  Does he know how inspiring it is to see a twenty-foot tree full of pink and cream blossoms; blossoms shaped like cups and saucers pouring out spring?  

Of course, all of this is none of my business.  I know that.  A neighborhood is really a village of people who need to respect and tolerate each other, so I will, and I do.

Still, how can anyone cut down a tree so lovely?  I don't understand.

And, I must be more careful what I wish for.