Tuesday, March 24, 2015

money, minimalism, the relationships we have with things

I don't know if I've mentioned this, but one of the things I'm trying to implement in my life is more minimalism.

At first glance minimalism causes people to think of getting rid of almost everything and living out of a backpack, I assure you it's not as drastic as that.

If you follow the link I added, you'll land on a page that sums it up like this:

[Minimalism means] Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom. That doesn’t mean there’s anything inherently wrong with owning material possessions. Today’s problem seems to be the meaning we assign to our stuff. We tend to give too much meaning to our things, often forsaking our health, our relationships, our passions, our personal growth, and our desire to contribute beyond ourselves. 
To my mind, minimalism is a hugely important part of living a sustainable lifestyle because it asks us to rethink our relationship to the stuff of consumerism.

Which is why, when I heard this podcast, I loved so many of the points it made about our relationship with money, status, debt, and identity.  I think there are some important ideas there about why we spend the way we do, what money means to us, and things we need to understand in order to better get ahold of our relationship with things and the role consumerism plays in our society.

I think it's worth a listen if these things are up your alley. And probably even more so if they're not. Just saying...


Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring Mantle Decor

One of the things that I wanted to do when I moved into our house (and after having Baby Faye) was to celebrate the seasons with decor around the house.  I wanted to bring the wheel of the year to life in my home and create great memories around the seasons for us as a family in this home.

This year I've started working on my Spring/Ostara/Easter decor:

I wanted something that was neutral but seasonal. Something that felt fresh, light and springy without being overly Easter or Ostara.

I need to play with levels a bit more (raise up the birdhouse maybe) but I am pretty happy with the simplicity of it. I may play around with it more over the years, adding more colour as the mood strikes me, but overall I'm pleased.

Yay for Spring mantles and the fact that despite still having snow on the ground, you can smell Spring in the air on the warmer days. I'm so ready for Winter to end.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

benefits of a structured practice

Which is better: a traditional practice or a personal practice; or rather, a structured by the book set of practices or a free, wing it as you go with what speaks to you in the moment practices?

I've been thinking a lot lately about this question. Honestly, I veer from one extreme to another as I ponder the question. Both seem to offer advantages and disadvantages. On some level I want to say that the personal practice is best because it demands that you be intentional and honest in the moment that it is done. However, I don't know if this is actually true in practice.

photo credit: meditation via photopin (license)

And that marks a bit of a weird shift for me.

I have always reacted negatively to by rote, formal systems of spiritual behaviour, donning my adolescent, put upon attitude and balking at the confines of structure. I have always believed on some level that your spiritual practice must be infused with personal, flexible, living meaning. Dutifully reciting a prayer by rote, without thought, has always struck me as so antithetical to crafting a vibrant practice.

I may have to eat my words and condemnation a bit here. My response may have been short-sighted and juvenile.

Hear me out before you react; before you say "Faye, you're off your rocker and are batshit crazy." Both might be true, but not necessarily in this case.

Here's why:

  1. Every time I try to just wing it, I catch myself getting all caught up in my head, wondering what do I want to say, is this right, blech, I don't like that, blah, blah, blah
  2. Winging it inevitably means that I'm really inconsistent. I mean that both in terms of what I'm saying and doing, and how often I'm actually doing anything.
  3. All that damn structure actually gets me off my ass, off the mat, and helps me build self-discipline in my practice (damn it).
  4. It might be wrong of me to say that doing something the same way makes it devoid of personal meaning. In fact, repetition may actually do just the opposite
  5. More importantly, repetition and structure seem to help me have a better sense of my own spiritual evolution and by extension, my personal growth

So yeah. I'm rethinking things over here in Faye land. Not necessarily comfortable things, but things that are important. I still think there are reasons why you'd want your practice to be fluid and personal but I'm coming to recognize that my personal levels of self-discipline need the structure in order to be fluid and flexible. I know, that seems odd, but it's true.

My practice makes me a better person. And structure makes my practice thrive. Therefore, a certain amount of structure makes me thrive.

Life is not without a sense of humour. Damn her!


Friday, March 13, 2015

if you can't poke fun at yourself, someone else will do it for you...

This totally cracks me up:

As a crunchy vegetarian, I totally love it. And I'm sorry, but "have you ever killed anything?" "no, but I've taken the morning after pill a LOT" is probably the funniest, most inappropriate thing I've heard in a while.

Yup, this made me happy. Have a joyful weekend.


Monday, March 9, 2015

what stories do we tell

I've been wondering a lot lately about blogging. At one point in my life, it was very important to me. It was something that I really enjoyed doing.

Lately however, I find it harder to sit down at the computer and write. And I'm not sure why. I don't really think it's motherhood at this point. Or a lack of things to say.  Rather, it's a question of do I really find it necessary to tell or share that story?

I'm really not sure about the shift and the why behind it. I've always been a share everything kind of girl and yet lately, I find myself holding back and thinking about is it something that needs to be shared. Does that story need to be out there? And honestly, most days, it feels like no, that story isn't so important or meaningful that I just have to share it.

And it's just such an odd place to be. And I don't really have much more to say about it other than that's where I'm at. It's all good and maybe it'll pass and maybe it won't. Either way, it's ok. But it definitely keeps me re-assessing what I sit down to write and has me leaving a great many half finished posts in my draft folder.


Friday, March 6, 2015

interesting astrology youtube videos

Don't be fooled by the gimmicky front to his youtube channel page because honestly, his analysis of astrology is super interesting. I totally loved (and kind of hated though it might be true) what he had to say about my chart: