Friday, June 12, 2009

Paring Down

Lately I am
that what
I want
most for
my family
is room
to breathe.
I have had this vision of emptying the house down to the bare walls, putting everything out into the yard, and slowly putting only what we need and regularly use back into the house. For months now we have been cleaning out corners and cupboards and letting go of things. Once you have a little space that is pared down and feel the openness and simplicity, it becomes fairly an obsession to spread the effect around. Decorative things have been the first to go. If we cannot use it for something as well as admire its beauty, it is out the door. What is left is taking on greater meaning as we finally begin to notice things.

We had curtains in the great room that were Colonial swags. They did not match our saltbox, and worse, they did nothing. They offered no protection from light or cold as they could not be lowered or drawn. I had a roll of fabulous hemp fabric just sitting around in a closet and we are in the process of changing over all the curtains to a simple rod pocket and iron pull back style. The one window that is finished is blissful! Wren can play in her kitchen in the hot afternoon sun and barely notice the glare from the windowpanes.

We had a lot of pottery displayed about and it was collecting a lot of dust. If we cannot bake with it, put flowers in it, or store something in it, for the most part it left the house too. What we are left with are small groupings that work well together and get a lot of use. I appreciate the workmanship a lot more and notice how the colors change throughout the day.

All of a sudden I see things differently. I love old worn leather and the pieces we have are so comfortable. They now stand out in the room as main focal points because so much of the other clutter has been cleared away.

A hat stands ready at the front door stair banister and a little saddle pouch hangs over the rail. Wren likes to take these items and put her little treasures in the pouches and play cowgirl in the hat. An old saddle sits atop an ottoman nearby and every child who comes to our house loves to ride this imaginary horse.
I am amazed by how little we need these days. We have always needed so little...we just got a bit lost along the way. I still have months of cleaning and giving away to do, but there is light in the tunnel now in so many areas of our home. It feels wonderful with each new day of paring down and my burdens are getting lighter and lighter. It gives me time to think about those things in my home that matter three family members. I hope they remember these times of letting go of things and I hope it sticks with all of us. What we enjoy more than ever nowadays is our time together, and that's something worth collecting.

1 comment:

Suzanne said...

Doesn't it feel good to declutter!

Good luck:-)