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Showing posts from January, 2017

A House is Like a Bead

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You remember when I made beads, don't you? It's probably how you first got to know me. (If not, have a look at my Beadist page.) My beads were made in layers, lots of layers, sometimes thirty or more. There were steps that needed to be followed, but most of what happened in any given bead was organic and something of a surprise to me. Each new layer became obvious as I completed the one before it, until finally, I would know it was finished.


I've noticed that making a house into Home is much the same as making a bead. It's done in layers too. We came in and cleaned, even though it was already clean. We cleared old energies with essential oils and words of gratitude. (Intention is everything, and I hate the smell of burning sage.) We painted for days, until our muscles hurt, and I vowed never to paint another wall again. I'm sure I was wrong about that. We still have the other half of our house to work on, once the renters move out. (Soon please.)

We brought in furn…

It Really Is The Ocean

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This little cove, at the south end of town, is a five minute walk from our house. It boasts some pretty great surfing waves, and almost every day we'll see anywhere from a handful to dozens of black silhouettes bobbing in the wild water. The stormy weather seems to keep them away, but otherwise, I'm told that the best surfing is in the winter. I'm happy watching from the beach.

For years in Seattle, and then again in Portland, we were surrounded by freeways, and the noise that comes with them. When that sound was at a distance, I was able to pretend I was really hearing the ocean. The other night we realized we actually can hear the waves from our back bedroom at night, when our already quiet neighborhood goes to sleep. Now I find that I'm having to convince myself that what I'm hearing is really the ocean, and not the freeway...

I'm sure I'll get used to it.

Seven Rules For Happy Moving

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Picking up where we left off...

Just as we allowed ourselves to relax and enjoy a day off before the big move, the moving company called to see if they could load the truck on Saturday instead of Sunday. So... the Friday we'd planned (I'm beginning to just crack up every time I hear that word) to go out and enjoy our favorite Portland places one more time was jolted into high speed last minute moving prep. Fine! OK! We can play in Portland some other time!

This brings me to Rule Number 1 for Happy Moving - Make a Plan, and Plan to Change It
This rule pretty much applies to everything in life. Nothing is ever going to go the way you expect it to. If you don't want to be crazy cranky as you intentionally tear apart your home and your current world, just try to be a little bit flexible. There's really no other choice anyway. Set things up the way you'd like them to go, and then take your hands off the wheel. You are not in control. Never will be.
Moving is hard work, …

Dancing With the Universe

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We thought we had it all planned out. The move, with all the painting, the packing, the truck, the phone calls, the changes of addresses and utilities... 
Aren't we adorable, making all these plans? We know very well by now that making a plan is like dancing with the Universe and pretending it's our turn to lead.

We worked it all out. We wrote it on our calendar - in ink - yeah, smart. Scribble, scribble, pencil next. Erase, erase. Step back and see what one thing we can do next, while we wait to see how the rest of it lines up. We drove over to our house - our new home - and spent four days painting walls that we thought would take one or two days. A tiny little space. Two rooms. We didn't even paint the bathroom, and we still have all the kitchen cabinets to do. but we painted the heck out of that place, and it looks just grand. Best of all, it looks and feels more like ours. Sad old paint is now replaced with a fresh, lovely finish. I even painted the insides of the clo…

My Little Closet

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It's perfect that we're moving at the beginning of a new year, when we'd normally be considering a fresh round of sorting and clearing. We've been doing this downsizing thing for years, since 2008, when we went to Ethiopia (and came back different). And you know, we're getting pretty good at it.

I can't imagine ever upsizing again. Even though we're buying a house, the total square footage is only about 1,100, and it's divided into two units. So we'll actually be living in about the same amount of space we have now, in our studio apartment, in Portland. I find this quite amusing. Half a house for us, and half for our family and friends and Airbnb guests.

The closet Rick and I have been sharing is small. Too small for one regular person's wardrobe, but we've made it work. Sort of. OK - I've been grumbling about wanting more space lately. But after watching Minimalism (highly recommended by me) on Netflix, I was inspired to give my half of…

We're Moving to the Beach

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When we moved from Taos to Portland, the intention was to "date" our new city for a year, and see if it was a good match. A year turned into two, and because we still needed to be in easy reach of family in both Seattle and California, we renewed the lease on our studio apartment for a third year last spring.

After about the first year though, we could tell that we didn't want to marry Portland. Lovely as she is, we began to grow weary of the pace and chaos of city living. We started driving to the coast as often as we could. Every time we were there, we'd ask ourselves, Why don't we live here??? The answer was always the same. The beach is too far from the airport, which I needed for my frequent trips to visit my dad, and it's too expensive to live there.

We sort of believed our story, and we'd go back to Portland with sandy feet, a bag of beach rocks to crochet, and a longing in our hearts. A few months ago, I stuck a map of the Oregon coast on our bath…