Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Adding Beauty to Your Life

Lately, I've been doing a lot of reading at several different blogs. Mostly, at Making it Home, but also at Homeliving Helper, and others. Of course, God is the One Who gives us beauty, but it is up to us to enjoy it.

It has dawned on me that not only must I enjoy the beauty God gives me, I must make myself do so. No, I do not mean that I need to force myself to enjoy His goodness. I mean that in each day I need to clear space in my heart, in my mind, in my home and relish the little things that come my way. How can I truly enjoy a cup of tea in the midst of clutter? Sitting in a clean room, sipping a cup of tea: that is beauty. Sitting down to a lovingly-prepared dinner with my husband: that is beauty. No dishes in the sink: that is beauty! Beauty comes in all shapes and forms in our lives. But do you see that before enjoying beauty comes work?

On Friday, after having read many articles and blog entries on homemaking and adding beauty to our lives, I helped my husband take everything out of my sewing room. In so doing, I realized just how many things I have managed to cram into that room--and I further realized that none of it is adding beauty to my life!

Most of my home is uncluttered, and simply decorated. However, it seems as though my senses took leave when it came to my sewing room. Part of it stems from the "something from nothing" mentality I have. All those little scraps? I could MAKE SOMETHING with them! Those old buttons, old decorations, old (fill in the blank)? I could MAKE SOMETHING with them! And so, I've hoarded things, packed things away, and generally taken beauty away from my life because of it.

I started on my mission to declutter. Most of the things that were in the sewing room are inaccessible right now, but I have been able to get rid of quite a few things.

I gave away via Freecycle:
an old raincoat that I bought at a yardsale
a gallon-size ziploc of DMC thread that someone bought for me at a yardsale
a grocery bag full of bubble wrap that we used from our last move
a bag of seam binding/hem tape that was given to me

I listed on e-bay:
two quilt tops

I gave to a friend:
a set of flannel graph backgrounds
a six-week flannel graph Bible lesson on the armor of God

I threw away:
old letters from penpals (these were between 6-10 years old) and
the beat up stationery box they were in

and lastly, I bought:
a hanging organizer for my gift-wrapping supplies

I know you aren't supposed to buy containers before you organize--all the experts say to wait until after you have organized and gone through everything to buy containers. However, I knew that was one problem in my sewing room closet. I was originally going to buy an under-the-bed container for them, but when I went to the store, I found a $20 hanging organizer on clearance for $5! That fits my purpose better anyhow! (And it keeps things from going under my bed! Currently, I do not store anything under my bed.)

I am by no means finished decluttering! I have quite a bit left to go through. But one step at a time, it will get finished!

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