Saturday, May 22, 2021

Rhythms...

My eight day blog absence was not a planned retreat, but happened naturally after deciding this past week to allow the rhythm of days to dictate the ebb and flow of activities, and you know, it was lovely. 


I do have a housework routine which is easily and joyfully followed day to day, but over the past few days I was able to catch up on a few unfinished tasks, visit with a friend, menu plan and cook ahead, tend my garden and feel that leap of joy every gardener knows when the newly planted seeds broke through the soil, go for an evening drive along the beach with my beloved, read interesting books, crochet more of the Hydrangea blanket, re-arrange the lounge/dining area, and spend relaxed time with Blossom and the children. 


Some days were busier than others, but overall there was a balance of rhythms which stoked the fires of my homemaker heart. I doubt whether I shall ever be a woman who can just sit and do nothing, but you know, I have made my peace with that now. My productiveness is God-gifted so why fight it? 


Having said that, I really am slowing down this year and being far more observant and intentional with all I put my mind to do. The benefits have been remarkable, with an ever deepening sense of satisfaction at day's end. 

The difference between Jennifer today and a year ago is how I approach each task, each new day, every relationship, and each opportunity which presents itself. With intentionality, counting the cost, and considering the value (both today and eternally) of what choices are made. 


The results have been life-changing and mind-changing, in fact I wish I'd done this years ago. Peace like a river, despite whatever circumstances arise, flows daily through my thoughts and I am finding the deepest contentment just in 'being' who God made me to be - not looking at others and wishing I were more like them, but taking stock of my character, likes and dislikes, changing what should be changed, removing that which is not needed (or not good for me), and gradually increasing more of the good things. 


I'm also listening more and talking less, choosing to watch or read only that which inspires and encourages me to improve my character, practicing the habit of good posture (no more slouching, though this is still something I need to remind myself of numerous times each day), studying the Bible for longer each morning, embracing cleaning with a grateful heart for what we have, being even more mindful of my role in preparing a healthy nutritious diet every day for hubby and I, and assessing the most functional (and lovely) way to re-organise our home for better use of space and storage. 

The other day I pulled the entire lounge/dining area apart for a deep clean, and once I began there was no holding back. Playing my favourite relaxation music in the background, everything was dusted, washed, polished and moved until by mid-afternoon it shone and sparkled, and a few things had been moved around.

Scrub, scrub, scrub...


My husband suggested a few months back that I should put my desk on the opposite side of the window underneath the air conditioning unit. It was too hot in summer for the dining table to be beside the window, though, so I had waited to try this.

Once the new layout took shape I was really happy he'd made that suggestion as it works well for me, but I especially love the dining table over by the light and it shall stay there all through winter and hopefully until late spring.




















After all that work I brewed a cup of vanilla tea and enjoyed a very late lunch of leftover pasta, cashew parmesan, salad and a delicious drizzle of balsamic glaze. 


Another thing has changed, especially the deeper I go into the art of homemaking - I used to think becoming a minimalist would be wonderful, but not anymore. When you choose to keep what you like, the things which hold value or simply bring joy to your surroundings, they are not clutter, they are emblems of home, evidence of a life lived, and hopefully lived with people you treasure and who treasure you. 

I still love order, space and beauty within my walls (and in my yard, though men can think quite differently, LOL!) and regularly donate what's not being used or is excess to our needs, but you will never be able to call me minimalist. Thank goodness I finally got over that idea, especially as I was failing in it. 



I'll sign off now because it's already been a productive Saturday morning with the usual rhythm of menu planning for the week ahead, hanging the washing, and sitting out the back with a cuppa to watch the cockatoos taking morning tea at our bird feeder - and I was able to write this blog post. 




Hubby will be home from work soon so it's a late lunch for us, then he'll potter in the garden while I start a re-organisation plan of my sewing room, before settling down to re-read an old favourite and perhaps bake scones for tea. 


God bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you;

the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace. 

(Numbers 6:24-26)

May your weekend be a rhythm of peace, joy, laughter, refreshment and satisfaction. 

hugs


PS: I shall do that Q&A post next week. 

19 comments:

  1. Hi Jennifer,
    Thanks for the comfy cozy tour of your house :) It's inspiring to see all the different ways you display your stitcheries and quilts.
    Trying something new, such as an idea, and not liking it isn't failing. It's all part of learing. Nevewr to old to do that :)
    There are many things on this blog to re read :) You published quite a bit last week. Hoemmakers Heart will be enjoyed along with the other two " back issues" saved :). 14 C and rainy here today...garden is loving it !
    hugs, take care,
    Joanne

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  2. That room does look lovely and inviting as well as a liveable space, I especially like the beautiful quilt that you have ever one of the sofas. x

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  3. You said you're choosing to do things that have value today & for eternity....but how can staying home, cleaning, cooking, ect have value for eternity? Especially after this past year, I see almost no one beyond my husband. Then the three days a week I keep my grandson & I see my dil in passing as we pass off the baby.

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  4. You are always an inspiration and I always look forward to your blog. God bless you and your family

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  5. How delightfully peaceful this post is. Keeping home in this way is a blessing to your family as well as to you, as the peace that you find resonates to all those whose lives you touch. Online too. I print out your lovely magazines and thank you for all the thought, planning and prayer that goes into them. It is no small amount of work, and you so generously share them with us all without charge. What a beautiful gift. Thank you Jennifer!

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  6. You are amazing and I love your kind words and gentle reminders to just be. Thank you.

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  7. Such comfortable looking chairs, even the one at your desk. What a blessing your words are.

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  8. My dear Jennifer, my how you have grown over the years. I remember when you first started a blog and newsletter. While they were nice to read and had lots of useful information, I sometimes found they felt hurried. There were times when I felt an undercurrent of something slightly off. You have always had your faith; however I have watched it strengthen as if a veil had been lifted from in front of you. There have been many trials and obstacles put before you and, yet, you never faltered. Never once did you say why me. Instead, you asked Lord, what must I do.

    Watching you grow over the years has been one of the best things in my life I have retained. Wishing you and your family many years of happiness, peace, love and good health. God bless you all and thank you for sharing a peek into your world. Waving at you from Cuenca, Ecuador. Terri at the Drake’s Nest.

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  9. My dear Jennifer, my how you have grown over the years. I remember when you first started a blog and newsletter. While they were nice to read and had lots of useful information, I sometimes found they felt hurried. There were times when I felt an undercurrent of something slightly off. You have always had your faith; however I have watched it strengthen as if a veil had been lifted from in front of you. There have been many trials and obstacles put before you and, yet, you never faltered. Never once did you say why me. Instead, you asked Lord, what must I do.

    Watching you grow over the years has been one of the best things in my life I have retained. Wishing you and your family many years of happiness, peace, love and good health. God bless you all and thank you for sharing a peek into your world. Waving at you from Cuenca, Ecuador. Terri at the Drake’s Nest.

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  10. I love the way you use your creations to make your house so beautiful, homey, and welcoming. A truly inviting atmosphere!

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  11. Hello Jennifer - what a lovely post. I too am enjoying accepting things about myself & that I will never be a minimalist. When I visit my eldest sons beautiful Home my hands itch to hang things on all those bare walls 😉 Everything in your lounge room looks so lovely & fresh & clean & so much handcrafted loveliness. I find that's what I am drawn to in other peoples homes - the handcrafted items. I love that floral tablecloth on your dining table. So pretty. I have been cleaning my kitchen - I have new lights installed this week & I put my glasses on & goodness me ................ 😉 Have a wonderful weekend my dear friend. xx

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  12. Just looking at your budding plants makes my heart smile.

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  13. You certainly achieved a lot in a short time. I wish I had the energy to move furniture to clean properly without scratching my floors. Daily cleaning will have to do for me lol. Posture is a thing I need to be more aware of too. Glad you spent time with Blossom and the children. I miss my grandsons...they have gone away for 2 weeks. At least I receive texted photos every other day. Take care. Don't overdo it.

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  14. Thank you, Jennifer, for your blog! The thought and time you invest is appreciated. God bless!

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  15. Your home looks lovely, peaceful, and inviting. No doubt it feels good to do a deep clean and a little rearranging. Like a fresh start. It's so nice to see laundry hanging outdoors (oh how I miss it!) and to watch cockatoos would be delightful. They have so much personality. I'm glad you're really finding yourself these days. Knowing who you are, what you're content to be, and then living that way, is the best way to be.

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  16. Such a lovely post. I agree wholeheartedly with your minimalist approach. I now my hubby would love me to be like that but it's just not me. I let go of many things eventually (one of my children takes after him and throws things out all the time and it gives me heart palpatations. I often think one day she may want this back.....). The majority of things I keep bring me joy and happiness.
    Your home looks so lovely and inviting.

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  17. This sounds like such a lovely day, Jennifer. I need to do more of this sort of thing, too. I think the rewards far outweigh any work involved. =)

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  18. " May your weekend be a rhythm of peace, joy, laughter, refreshment and satisfaction."
    the first step is reading your beautiful post. It gives off peace and a smooth rhythm of life in harmony. Thank you so much for sharing it. Hugs.

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  19. This was lovely to read. And I remember so well when we were both waiting on our forever homes! Look at how it is so you now. You have a beautiful set up and routine. We are blessed! xxx

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It's always nice to receive feedback on a blog post, so *thank you* for taking time to comment!
I will try to reply via email unless you are a 'no reply blogger' which means you'll have to check for my reply in the comments. Of course, life is a rather hazardous activity, isn't it? So if I don't respond to your comment that's the reason why - life simply stepped in...
hugs
Jennifer
x