Setting a tone: gratitude and thankfulness

Today’s post is about setting a tone of gratitude and thankfulness in your home. First, let’s start with a reflection: What are the top 3 things you complain about? Are these things that only exist as a consequence of living in a country where you, by definition, are in the top 10% of wealthiest people in the world? Is there anything you can do to change any of those things? If you want me to be conservative, let me suggest that if you are reading Continue reading →

Some homes are for a season

We’ve moving again. As the title says, some homes are for a season. In this case that season is Fall (Autumn) and Winter. We’re only moving a little way – about 15 miles – to military housing that was not available when we arrived here last August. But, because we just moved we are pretty exhausted by the thought of moving again within 6 months, even it is in the same city. So, we’re purging again, which is kind of our pre-PCS go to, and Continue reading →

Minimalism isn’t a dirty word

If you’ve read any of my posts here or on Not a Pedestrian Life, you’ll know that traveling and moving is part of the story of our family. You’ll also know that I feel strongly about the value of carefully chosen items which remind us of who we are and where we come from. Nevertheless, every year hundreds of books are published about decluttering, organising, downsizing and otherwise ridding yourself of stuff. There’s something very western and very consumptive about this phenomenon. In order to Continue reading →

From Trash to Treasure: the Dumpster Dresser

All I have to say is “Thank you Nicole Curtis!” – after watching the first season of rehab addict, RM started to understand how something that might appear at first to be trash may turn out to be treasure. It all started one weekend afternoon with the snow on the ground, RM took the garbage bags out to the dumpster in the alley behind our house. There he found a dresser. It was laminate veneer. One of the drawers was stuck but he excitedly ran Continue reading →

State of the Union

“There is nothing more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife, confounding their enemies and delighting their friends.” ― Homer, The Odyssey Admirable as it may be, but living with someone else, whether you live with your elderly parents, a roommate or roommate, a spouse or significant other, or with 100 strangers in a college residence, has its moments. Around the time we became engaged, RM and I started periodic meetings which we call “The State Continue reading →

Textiles: Warmth and the brownish knitted sweater

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” – Edith Sitwell That brownish knitted sweater. I needed it. It was that beautiful wool against my skin or it was going to be hiding under the covers for the rest of the day. It had been a gift to my aunt many years ago. So long that she hadn’t realised it had found Continue reading →

Be at Home where you Are

“Be at home where you are” (1 Tim 6:6-7) Being fully at home in a new place is not always easy. But in making a home, being at home seems kind of inherent. “No settled family or community has ever called its home place an “environment.” None has ever called its feeling for its home place “biocentric” or “anthropocentric.” None has ever thought of its connection to its home place as “ecological,” deep or shallow. The concepts and insights of the ecologists are of great Continue reading →

Merging Stuff and Styles

“It is true that the aesthetic turn has led to a frantic search for mystical experiences of all kinds, and to addictive behavor and its accompanying levels of stress. But the abuse of goods underlines their indispensability; it should not lead us to deny their source in God and God’s created purposes. What we cannot do, despite the deviations we prefer, is ignore the turn to style and aesthetics that is so prominent.” William A. Dyrness,Poetic Theology,(35-36) Two lives melding into one. Nothing has been Continue reading →

What’s in a Name?

“Philosophy is really nostalgia, the desire to be at home.” ― Novalis Names have power. Names convey identity. Names mark seasons of life and spaces. Names help you find a sense of ownership or belonging: they mark the beauty and the hope for and within a place (or for a child). Rural properties in Australia commonly have a name that identifies it to the community. Addresses have only recently been changed to numbers that indiciate to emergency services the distance down a particular roads. I Continue reading →

Life is Messy

“The cruel irony of housework: people only notice when you don’t do it.” — Danielle Raine Housework Blues — A Survival Guide Life is messy. People are Messes. And Messy. Do you ever feel that rush of urgency when you find out you’ve got guests coming over, or when the door bell rings at 3pm on a weekday? Do you feel like your home is not clean or tidy enough? Like the afternoon when our neighbour called to check if she could bring by friends Continue reading →