A New Path

Curves on Curves

We continue to wait for our house to sell. While it’s only been a month on the market, it seems like forever. Maybe this is an American trait, we want it yesterday to sell. Our realtor suggested start packing like you will be moving soon.  Which I have, only leaving out what we need to get by on.

We are excited about the new path our lives is about to take. Once our house sells we will drive to our new state, find a place to stay while we look for our new home. We have three areas we are interested in and since we were there last fall, we drove all over and have a good idea of the area.

In the meantime, I’ve been reading a lot from The Minimalist. One of the things they had suggested was to box everything you have. One box to keep, one box to donate, and the third box if you’re not sure if you want or not. That was helpful and I was able to donate a lot of items.

As we wait to move, I have noticed that the items I have boxed to take with us, I’m not sure if I need those items.  Fortunately, I have label my boxes because now, I don’t even know what are in the boxes. So, I’m wondering if I even need these items. While waiting, I am considering going back through some of the boxes to see if I really need the items in there. My new motto, less is best.

 

How to Minimalizing Art Work?

I’m at a standstill. As I had mentioned before, we are moving. Watching the documentary on The Minimalist, I have been able to get rid of a lot of items. I now have the majority of our things packed and ready to move. Being a photographer, I have a lot of photographs that are framed and at one time or another were in different art shows. These photos are the ones that didn’t sell. Since the place we will be buying is smaller than the house we live in, I don’t have room to take all of these photos.

My problem is, I don’t know what to do with them. My family or friends don’t want them. I am having a moving sale and hopefully, some will sell. I don’t want to trash them. I have thought about donating them to GoodWill as my last resort.

If anyone has some ideas on what I can do with these photos, please let me know.

The Begining-Day One

Curves on Curves

A quote from The Minimalist, “One day or day one. You decide.” Think about that. What power that quote has? I have chosen day one. What power that gives me. What happens today could be the choices I make. Of course, I realized ‘Life’ can add surprises to a day. However, how I chose to respond is still up to me.

I’m am still reading their book, “Everything That Remains”, and one section talked about goals. Not setting goals. I have to admit this idea is hard for me. Most of my life I have felt program to have goals. For me, not having a goal means that  I’m wasting my life. I’ve always felt that every minute needed to count and in order for that to happen, I needed goals.

This doesn’t mean that I become irresponsible.  Today I had several things that needed to be done and I did complete them. Now, I’m at a lull and my mind automatically goes to what other goals do you have for today and there are none and that is okay. I think. 🙂

I can sit here and write, read, or watch the fire, and there is no pressure to fulfill any goals. I have to admit, this new idea may take me a time to get used to.

Crossing the Bridge

Today is the last day of 2016.  Usually, I feel sad to see the year end. Mostly because it’s a reminder of me getting older, like everyone else.  But, this day is different. I’m looking forward to the new year. A lot of changes will be happening to me.

It started last fall. We decided to put our house up for sale and plan to move to the gulf of Mexico.  We had a buyer in two days, but that failed through. As I mention in my last post, we are still waiting for a new prospect.

What I wasn’t aware of, the other changes going on with me. Since we are downsizing, big time, I had to go through and donate, sell, give away a lot of our things.  For example,  my couch from my grandparents that I thought I could never part with, is gone. My mind was made up. If I couldn’t use it, it was gone.

In the last few weeks, I watched a documentary called “The Minimalist”.  It struck a nerve. That’s what I was doing, minimalizing my life. Yes, it did feel freeing.  The saying, “less is best” is fitting for me.

Most of our items are packed up and waiting. This is the hard part. I’m ready to go, now. It’s getting cold here and I want to be where it is warm. I’m ready to make new changes in my life. I want to try and see new things. The waiting is creating a lot of anxiety for me. I know to calm that anxiety is to focus on the present.  I read an article this morning which touched me.  I quote, “big life changes don’t happen overnight. Give yourself some time. Put in the effort. You will be surprised what can happen in a year.” (The Minimalist)

So, I leave you with hoping everyone has a happy new year and be surprised what comes your way.

img_8178

The Waiting Game

Yesterday, we had several people to come and look at our house. We did get an offer but we made a counter offer. I think too many people are watching HGTV and think they can give the lowest offer ever.:) It may work in some cases. Now we wait for their response.

The different feelings one goes through while waiting amazes me. I am really trying to focus on the present. Right now. However, my mind is jumping all over the place. Get more boxes, pack more items, or go through the closets, again. Whew!

If this offer goes through, we will have to find a place to rent until we buy our new house. I will be looking at places while we are waiting.  Making decisions on what to pack and what to pack in the POD will need to be made.

I continue to listen to different podcasts from The Minimalist and that is helping me on deciding what to let go. One thing that was mention was letting go of objects that one has kept for the memories. Memories are not these objects. Memories are events that were created with others. I know I have several boxes of “memories” that I saved that are related to my grandchildren. Listening to this podcast, for me, I realized my fear of letting these go is because I think I won’t ever get something from them and at least I have these items.  Hmm, looks like I need to work on that.

If my true desire is to be free of all, I need to remember this photo of this bird who is able to soar high without any attachments.

wings open

 

Out of Touch for Three Years? Wow!

I gave up blog writing. Why? I don’t know.  Maybe I thought my writing was boring. Lazy? Probably.  In a rut? For sure.  Today, this moment, I decided to return. Why? New changes are happening. We are taking big risks and I want to share these risks with anyone who wants to read.

We are moving. My husband and I always enjoyed the beach and one day, last fall, we asked our self why we aren’t living near the beach?  We took a two-week trip to the gulf and looked at several places to live. We found a place we liked, came home and put our house up for sale.sunset

We are retired Seniors. With that being said, it has been a hard decision to make. Our grandchildren are pretty much grown. We aren’t needed to babysit anymore. The kids are doing their own things. So, we decided we should do the same. Our main feeling is, if we don’t do this now, it will be too late.

Thousands of different thoughts and emotions came crashing on me: “Are you crazy?”, “You’re too old to make a long distant move”, “Who’s going take care of you?”, to mention a few.

Our house sold in two days. Excitement and panic overflowed. Now we really did it.  The packing of 23 years started. Since we are downsizing, we had to let go of a lot of stuff. Fortunately, my son wanted most of the furniture.  Goodwill and I became good friends after making several trips to donate.  During this period of getting rid of stuff, I noticed that I was feeling pretty good about it. I thought that was a bit odd for me as I can become attach to objects.

We separated what we want to keep and was waiting on our POD to arrive when the bad news came. Our buyer had to back out due to his buyer backing out. You know; the domino effect.  Our house is back on the market, and we are surrounded by boxes. How can potential buyers navigate around hundreds of boxes?  We had to make the main room presentable. All the boxes went downstairs. Now we are limbo. A waiting game. thumb_img_0549_1024

Last week we watched the documentary called “The Minimalist”. I’ve never heard this word before and what these guys were saying was making sense of the feelings I was having. I’ve always loved our house. It’s in the woods, but we are in the city limits. Surrounded by wildlife. It is a perfect place to have the grandchildren over to enjoy nature and all that goes with it. I realized our desires had changed. We enjoying traveling but wouldn’t stay gone very long for afraid something would happen to our house. In reality, we are tied to the house. This show helped me to see this clearly.

So, I would like to blog about how becoming a “Minimalist” is affecting my life as we prepared for our new chapter in life- living with less.

 

 

Windsor Castle

IMG_6803 On our tour, we were able to visit Windsor Castle. What a place! We were not allowed to take photos inside but I did manage to get a lot of photos outside. My history of the castle is not very good. When PBS had a show on about “Queen Victoria and her Children”, it was quite interesting how they lived in the castle. In my mind, I thought it must be a wonderful place to live. Having parties, dances, and special events. I was surprise, at least for Queen Victoria and her children, it was not that ‘cheery’. It seems after Prince Albert died, Queen Victoria’s life deteriorated. It was like if she couldn’t be happy, her children wouldn’t be allowed to have any joy and in a sense were prisoners at the castle. Hopefully today, things are a bit more cheery at the castle.

European Trip Overload

Image

My husband and I went on a trip of a lifetime. After watching Rick Steve’s travel shows on Europe, we decided that we could do it on our own. What a trip!! We were gone almost two months. We flew to London and stayed there for six days. Caught the Eurostar to Paris and stayed there for five days. Caught another train to Nice, France. What a city!  We stayed there for three days and caught a plane to Barcelona, Spain. After five days in Spain, we caught a transalantic cruise ship to come home.

The weather was perfect. Only one day of slight rain, when we went to Stonehenge. By the time we got there, the sun was coming out, so I was able to get some pictures of the stones with shadows.  While I have seen these stones on TV many times, being there was amazing. The feelings I had while wondering through the path is really undescribeable.  I could had stayed there several days, just absorbing the magic from these stones. I took lots of photos and was lucky to get several without the crowds.

Where does the overload come from? The many photos I took – around 2,000, not counting the videos. When we plan our next trip, I will have to do something different. Trying to go through these have created a block.  Where do I start? Since we have been back, I have gone through the majority and now trying to get my videos together.  I think I have learned a lesson. 🙂

Practice, Practice, Practice

Image

I have been out of touch for a bit. One of my goals to work on since I retired, is to learn Photoshop Element better. I mean a lot better!  I’ve been able to get by but I want to learn more. For some people, it probably is very simple process to work. However, for me, I have problems remembering what I did to create something different. Like this picture. I was following a tutorial and it worked but to go back and do it again, I’ll have to relearn. UGH!  So most of my afternoons have been watching tutorials and practicing. I lucked out and found a tutorial that is simple and I can understand. 

When I first started editing my photos, it was on a PC with a Microsoft program. There were no layers. Now that I’m using a Mac, my son gave me Photoshop Element and it’s all about layers. For whatever reasons, I couldn’t wrap my brain around it. So, I did what I could, lots of time the hard way. 

Since taking the time, I think I finally got it. At least a start. I am pleased with this picture and it is motivating me to keep on learning.

 

Wait For Me

Image

hot air balloons, balloon glow, orange, yellow, green, night

I have had several ‘irons in the fire’, one might say, this past week. The above photo is one of them. It was accepted in an art show and I had to get it printed, matted, frame and mailed before the deadline. I do my own matting and framing. This time I had some extra frames for the size I was using. I went to the store to get my glass, came home and started to put it together and realized my metal frames were not the same width. 😦 So, back to the store to get new frames, put it together and mailed it off. I believe next time, I’ll go ahead and have it printed even if it doesn’t get accepted.  I was cutting it close. This show was for photography only. It was a nice show and had a lot of different photos in it.

This is one of my most recent photo. I went to our 2nd annual hot air balloon show. It was hot and humid. My night shots are not my strong suit but I was able to get several decent pictures of the balloons, so maybe I am getting better. 🙂

It was a surprise to see the smaller balloon against the bigger one and I thought it added a lot to this photo. Sometimes, I am often surprise what come up in my photos once they are on the computer.