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Patagonia Dreaming…..

Patagonia has haunted my imagination for the last 3 years.  Ever since I watched the movie 180 Degrees South, I have been fascinated by what seems like one of the last frontiers on earth.  I love to hike and camp and this vast untamed wilderness encompassing parts of Chile and Argentina calls to me.  Last year during my Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica I met a fellow yogi who lives on the Chilean side, literally in my bucket list.  Her Facebook photos and updates taken in her own backyard only deepen my desire.

Patagonia is not the easiest or cheapest place to get to.  And with two big trips planned for 2018 it my not come off the bucket list anytime soon.  But for me, dreaming of the places I want to explore, with the people I want to explore them with is part of the fun and if nothing else gives me something to work towards. So for now, I will continue to read and dream about this magical place on the planet…and I’ll be putting all the spare change I can in the travel fund.  Often the things we desire the most are the hardest to reach.  But that too is part of the journey.

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10 Days to Calm

I have experienced first hand the benefits of de-cluttering and creating space. The sense of calm, feeling organized and feeling lighter both in our home and minds. A key benefit for me is that with 4 kids (and a cat named Wes) I don’t have the time or energy to put into cleaning and organizing. By eliminating a lot of our possessions, I have created a home I love and one that I can clean in a fraction of the time it used to take. Everything has a place (if it doesn’t its goes)and there isn’t actually a lot of stuff.

That being said, with a large family we still manage to accumulate more than we need. And so I created a summer challenge for myself (and the rest of the family though participation levels varied).

Its simple: 10 days, 10 rooms (or spaces) and 10 items. Every day for the last 10 days we picked a room and got rid of 10 things. The items could be anything from near empty bottles of shampoo to old school papers to clothing. Some stuff went into the recycling, some into the garbage and the rest into our donation bins we keep in the garage. I did get a little carried away at one point and actually emptied out the living room into the backyard…but thats another blog!

At the end of the 10 days I can see the difference and most importantly feel it. This is a great way to start the process of simplifying your life. Its quick, easy and doesn’t overwhelm. Try it and share your experience with us!

 

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Embracing the Funk

We all have those days, weeks, months when nothing seems to be coming together.  A few weeks ago, despite my best efforts to do and be more, the list of tasks just kept growing and with each item added my motivation to check anything off waned.  I found myself stuck in a funk.

I used to push harder and power through but the effort always left me exhausted and resentful.  Why do I have to work so much?   Four kids-what were we thinking (though we LOVE them all)? Why did I sign them up for one more G-Damn sport and why the fuck do they eat so much-I just did groceries (and don’t even get me started on the laundry). This coping strategy often left the fridge full and the laundry done (not to mention the floors mopped and the house tidy) but it drained me of the one thing I cherish: my energy.

Last year on my Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica, the staff at the resort gave us one warning about the beautiful Pacific.  If you feel it begin to pull you-swim with the flow not against it.  Fighting the current is hopeless.  It made me wonder-what if instead of fighting the universe and the flow and rhythm of life we just embraced it and moved with it? And so last week we ate more take out, wore clothes that may have been picked up off the floor and slowly prepared for a camping trip to Killbear Provincial Park.  When we left the house the floors were a mess, the laundry was still sitting in baskets and the fridge was completely bare.  For three glorious days we had nothing to do but hike, connect with each other and nature and figure out what was left in the coolers to eat.  I came home refreshed and with my energy replenished.  And so last week I cleaned and purged the house, my office, my fridge.  And brought back into those spaces the things I love.

When you have a life that is filled with kids and jobs and commitments, it isn’t easy to just say no and do less. Sometimes you have to embrace the chaos in order to find the calm.