It’s November 1st, the day after that day where kids roam the streets, looking for candy.
I hope you all had a great Halloween last night. The kids here in Norway have embraced the US tradition of going trick and treat, so I prepared myself for an invasion. I was right to be prepared, because by the time the night was over, 50 kids had visited me, and I only had one very very tiny bag of candy left.
In this day and age, where a lot of people mostly look out for themselves, we are no stranger to the kids following suit. And part of my evening was filled with a bunch of kids who showed up in one “horrible” costume after another, with blood pouring, heads chopped off, almost “running” me down for some candy 🙂
But… there was a moment, that profoundly touched my heart. A moment that showed me that there are compassion among kids, that they care for each other, and want the best for each other!
Riiing… the doorbell rang, and I opened up to a pile (8 or 9 of them) of young “men”, most likely in the age group of 9-11 (a bit hard to tell considering they were wearing masks). Who very politely took turns to get their bag of candy handed to them. They thank me nicely and I closed the door.
Riiing… I opened again and I look into the blood dripping face of one of the kids that I just closed the door on. He asked if he could get one more candy bag for a friend and he pointed to a kid with a yellow reflex vest standing a bit in the shadows. “Yes off course, just tell him to come over and I’ll get him one..” Mr. Yellow vest was at that time turned and slowly walking away..
“He doesn’t want to, he’s afraid, because he has no costume”, I feel my heart breaking as I hand the candy over to one of the other kids who run over to Mr. Yellow vest with it, and I ask Mr. Blood dripping face if they want a small bag for Mr. Yellow vest to collect his candy in. “Yes please, that would be grand”
Then I suddenly hear “He is crying” and I look up and the kid that handed the candy to Mr. Yellow vest is beckoning the group. My heart drops and I rush to give the plastic bag to Mr. Blood dripping face and he hurries over together with the rest of the group to comfort Mr. Yellow vest.
I felt so sorry for Mr. Yellow vest, and I just wanted to go over and give him the biggest hug ever.. But his group was already taking care of him and the only thing I could do was “shout” (ok not really shouting but a raised voice since they were a few feet away) over to them that a costume didn’t matter, that the candies are for everyone and that people wouldn’t care if he was wearing costume or not…
After a moment Mr. Blood dripping face turns towards me and waves at me saying that “He is ok now” and they start to move slowly down the street.
This group of young men have stayed with me since last night. In the middle of times where bullying is a real problem, it is heartening to see that there are kids out there that care, that care to stay by their own, to rally around a sad kid and help him out. It would be so easy for a group to “jump all over” a kid that sticks out and beat him while he is down. But this group choose to include and help and do anything they could to cheer him up and make him feel better.
These young men will forever stay with me, for they truly touched my heart.
I just got back after a few days in Oslo, the capital of Norway, hanging out with some friends who was visiting from US, and it’s time to get serious with my decluttering again. During this summer anyone that have been reading my blog, knows my items out-the-door have pretty much been non existent.
I’m not sure why I have this persistent thought that I need to declutter some more… my house is pretty much under control, I have gotten rid of tons of stuff the last few years, and in most peoples mind I never owned that much in the first place.
I think it’s part of this minimalist journey, wanting to shed more, I see it with a lot of the other “minimalists in making” that I follow as well, that as you declutter and get rid of things, it spills over in other aspects of your life.
As we declutter we become more aware of the things that matter, of what is important to us, either in the items we own, the people we are with, or the things we choose to spend time on. So we continue to declutter our; physical items, digital stuff, mental clutter, social interactions and work stuff, in hope that we will reach the right balance. The right balance between health, family, friends, work and you!
For most of us, it’s a work in progress, a continuous path we are on, one that might never end, as we slowly evolve into the people we want to be.
And this is why I think I still feel compelled to declutter, I’m not yet where I want to be, as I still have loads of “stuff” I want and need to sort through.
Sometimes it takes an event or a major issue to wake you up! An event or issue so big, that it compels you to change your ways.
Me getting sick a few years back, have surely been an eye opener! It has put a lot of things into perspective, and made me realise a few things. I also lost my dad to an illness about 2,5 years ago, which really brought home a few truths, about how I had some of my priorities wrong.
I know I never really write much about the inner changes, this blog has mostly been about decluttering the physical stuff. I guess it’s because the physical stuff is more tangible, it is something you can show the results of.
The inner stuff is harder to put down on paper, especially since the change often is so subtle, you hardly even notice that it happens, until your are way down the line. Then all of a sudden you realize that you have changed, changed the way you view a few things, changed what is important, changed some of your priorities…
It’s this change that made me realise that there are certain things in life that is no longer worth the cost of having it in my life. It’s this change that resulted in me finally deciding to throw in the towel with work and prioritize health. Without this inner change, I would still be at it, working away, ignoring my health, slowly working my way down in a ditch I might never have gotten out of, while at the same time do irreparable damage to myself.
It’s this inner change that might one day make us realise, that the things we used to live and breath for, no longer is the center of our universes.
We might suddenly realize that, “Hey, I don’t care all that much about this thing anymore, this thing that used to be the most important part of my life, this thing I prioritized over everything else, to very often, the exclusion of everything else… whoah!”
I don’t write about my inner changes much, because I don’t know what to say, I can’t quite formulate it all. The only thing I can say, is.. that the changes I experience on my minimalist path, makes me more centered, calmer, more aware of what’s important, less materialistic, more aware of where my energy goes and more in tune with whom I want to be.
It’s a slow process, and I’m on my way.. not quite there yet, but on my way!
And the strangest thing, that every time I shed some physical stuff, it seems to help me along my path to shed some mental stuff. It’s probably because I have to seriously think about if the item is important to me and why. It might also be because I’m getting into the harder stuff, the family stuff, the photos that bring back all sorts of memories, the stuff after my dad, the stuff that carries with them their own ghosts.. some of them my ghosts…
So this is why I declutter, so that I one day might get it all cleared out!
I think, I must be a fraud! There is no way I’m a minimalist!!
I just got back from visiting a new friend, a neighbour that moved in about two months ago.
I met her because she stopped over at my place to ask some questions about a couple of plants she had just bought (and just about killed already).
So what do I do? Well I just took it upon myself to get her a new healthy plant, and at the same time repotted her half dead ones in some pots I had at home! Her entrance area looks much more friendly now.
But let’s get back to the fact I’m a minimalist fraud…
As I delivered the plants, I got invited in. And yes, I know she had just moved inn after a newly divorce, so yes, I get that she might not have had all that much to start out with… But her place was soooo minimalistic when it came to amount of furniture (some might say it was totally empty and bare), and soooo maximalistic when it came to empty space, and I loved it.
Upon entering my own place, I suddenly realised… I have a long way to go, before I’m a true minimalist…
Compared to most people, I’m doing pretty good on the minimalistic path. Comparing myself to my neighbour, I’m not sure I’m even a minimalist in training 😦
Thankfully, I don’t have to compare myself to anyone, this is not a competition 🙂 I know I have ways to go yet, before I’m where I want to be.
What I’m taking away from my visit to new friend, is the inspiration to continue to get rid off stuff, so that I might one day, end up with a place that gives me the same airy feeling, as I got when I stepped into her house.
So, it’s time to get cracking… again 😉
I’m sorry I’ve been out of touch. I caught that dreaded winter cold, which put me out of commission for a few days 😦
I’m all better now 😉 so the last couple of days I’ve been trying to put together a post. For some reason, every time I sit down to write it, what ends up on “paper” is NOT even close to what I originally intended to write… it’s like my mind have an agenda on it’s own…!!!
And guess what, the result is a bunch of unfinished posts!
I’m coming to realise I might just have to let that topic, I’ve been mulling around, go… at least this time around, and maybe just write about something different, a lighter topic maybe?
So here I am, trying to get my ducks in a row…
While I’m figuring this out, please hang in there 🙂
PS. How do you guys handle “road bumps” in your writing?
Would you believe it, today is my one year anniversary. One year! I’m sure for people out there, who have been at this for years, one year is nothing, and I get that. Hopefully I will be among those one day. But for me, here, today, one year of blogging is significant!
A year ago, I decided that a goal for 2014 would be to shed on average one item a day. And I got this idea, that I would start a blog to keep me on track, which as you can see, I did 🙂
So why is celebrating one year such a big deal? Well, you see, when I started out, I had this intention to blog for a year, but to be quite honest with you, I wasn’t really sure if I would actually manage to stick with it. I’ve tried journalling before and never succeeded (and I’ve tried several times), so why would writing a blog be anything different? But believe it or not, here I am, one year later, still posting the occasional words on my blog, and that’s why one year is such a big deal. Not only was I able to stick with it, but I’ve found that I like doing the occasional writing, and being part of a blogging community.
Little did I know, when I started out, that this world of bloggers, would enrich my life, as they have truly done.
This year, I have changed some of my ways. I’m sure some of this change would have come about any-ways, because of the journey I’ve been on the last few years. But there are no doubt that I have changed even more because of the blogging community.
You never know, I might let you in on some of these changes, over the next weeks and months 😉
It’s funny, how when you start a journey, it’s like the universe align itself to help you out, and put the right people in your path. And that’s how it feels, one year in. Starting a blog seems to have been one of the better decision I could have made. Through my blog, I’ve met some wonderful and creative people, who’s writings I can’t help but to be influenced by.
I’m really looking forward to continue this journey of mine, together with all of you, who so graciously have invited me into your “homes”. Without you, this blog would surely no longer exist!
I can’t wait to see what the next year will have in store for us all 🙂
Last night I found out that I had gotten a wonderful mention from Laura over at The Next 50 Years.
Saturday was her 1 year blog anniversary!
Laura decided to honour some of her fellow bloggers, and could you believe it, she choose me first. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw it, I was completely floored, and honoured.. and did I mention floored? Not only that she would choose my blog, but also for her lovely words. You can read her post here.
Laura found me December 23rd 2013, 10 days after I started my blog. She have practically followed me since the beginning.
I love Laura’s outlook on life, how she embraces single living, how she completely nails it in some of her single living specific posts, how she makes me grin or even laugh out right.. and not to forget… she makes me think!
It’s wonderful meeting bloggers and making new friends. And I can’s say how much I appreciate Laura being a part of my world. Should I ever be in her neighbourhood (in the US), I’d love to stop over for a cup of tea and a chat 🙂
Congratulations on your 1 year anniversary, Laura!
I hope you’ll continue to share your thoughts with us for years to come, I know at least one who will enjoy that 🙂
I invite you all to mosey over to Laura at The Next 50 Years, for a looksie 🙂 Enjoy!
With all these small projects I have going, you know… the photo collection, my dads boxes, DVD project and collection all sorts of stuff in boxes for my neighbour to have a look, before I get rid of them, my house is in shambles. Serious shambles! And I just can’t procrastinate any more (which I have done a serious job at the last couple of days), and today I just need to get it done.
Do you ever find that you have so many things you are working on at one time, that you are suddenly overwhelmed with stuff?
Well that’s been me (and my living room) the last week or so. Right now I have so much photo stuff stacked around my living room table that I can hardly get to my sofa any more, without stepping over piles. Or for that sake put down my morning tea, without having to move several stacks away.. even just writing this post I have to dig out some space on my table for my pc…
Well enough of that, I’m going to put everything back where it came from, clean up the place and start over, one item at the time, one box, one album!
I might not have the same progress on the projects (you know – out of sight, out of mind) but at least I’ll have some piece of mind when I’m sitting in my living room.
Oh yeah, I should probably let you in on one more incentive! My neighbours mum is coming over on Friday for a cup of coffee… another good reason to get my house in order, wouldn’t you say? 😉
I can’t believe this is my 100th post!
Little did I know when I started out, how much having a blog would mean to me, and I never thought about all the milestones I would go through having a blog.
My first post – The start of my journey!
Suddenly I had my first like and my first follower, woohoo… But how on earth did they find me?
And thank you Jen over at Me woman you man for making the first comment on my blog – oh my I was excited. The cool thing! She is still with me 🙂
Soon followed the 10th post Taking a stab at my bookshelves, my 10th like, the 10th comment and my 10th follower – Ed my dearest friend 🙂
Fast forward and I’m hitting my 100 likes, my 100 comments and after a while my 100th follow by My botanical garden.
And not to forget! My first award, a Liebster award, quickly followed by a second Liebster award I sadly never wrote about, which was given to me by My Light Bag who got it from Laura at The next 50 years who got it from me 🙂 My third award was a Sunshine award and I believe I have a fourth award waiting for me (from Heather at Simply Save) whenever I get my act together to write about it 😉
And here I am; 170 followers, 3956 views, 735 comments (I believe the stats are counting mine as well, so half maybe?), 63 countries later, doing my 100th post!
It never dawn on me, starting out, that I would find kindred spirits, make blog friends, and feel like I belong to a community. Or how I would miss people when they stopped blogging (hopefully only for a while). Or how bad I would feel when I don’t have the time or energy to keep up with my community (I guess it’s just like with regular friends).
I never thought about how much pleasure I would get out of having a blog. How my mind is forever making post in my head, even though sometimes they never make it down on “paper”.
Or how I would be changing during the course of blogging and moving along my minimalistic path. How other bloggers have made me think about all sorts of things from taking better care of the environment, become more thrifty, eat healthier, travel more, single living (nice to know I’m not alone) and take better care of my health. I even believe the blogging community helped with my decision of taking a time-out!
I just want to thank you, my faithful followers, commentators, bloggers, for making my days more cheerful, mindful, reflective and sometime just plain happy 😉