Thursday, March 28, 2013

Is there a Spring in your step?

“You can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep Spring from coming.”
Pablo Neruda (Chilean poet)

Spring is here! And with that there is a sense of renewal.  Flowers once dormant are beginning to bloom;  trees once bare are budding.  It is undoubtedly a time to RE-

For many, it is time for a spring cleaning, throwing out the clutter, cleaning and organizing our homes.  It is that time when we dig deep into closets, drawers, and cabinets to clean up the mess of another year, and rearrange our belongings, and in so doing, bring renewed order to our lives.  Along with that order comes a refreshing sense of purpose and peace.  Typically we accumulate and crowd our homes and our minds with an abundance of…everything! There is little room for peace, since our thoughts and our spaces are literally too full.  This is our time to stop, take in a clean breath of fresh air, and renew.

There is a quote which I keep on my magnet board:

"Clean out a corner of your mind and creativity will instantly fill it."
-Dee Hock  

So, perhaps Spring is also time to reassess ourselves individually.  Too often we continue on our metaphorical treadmill, trying to keep up and push ahead.  Rarely do we take the opportunity to step back to reflect on the direction in which we are headed.  Is this the path that you wanted to be on? Does it still bring you fulfillment, happiness, and satisfaction?

So rather than chugging along with the familiar, we might use springtime to re-evaluate.  If you assess your life, your work, your relationships, your goals, and you like what you see, then perhaps reaffirm your commitment to them.  Set new exciting goals that reinvigorate the path along which you travel.  On the other hand; if you look upon your life and you feel a deep dissatisfaction, perhaps this springtime is your turning point, as you “clean out your life’s clutter.” For many of us, life has changed from the days when we originally established our goals.  It’s only practical and cathartic to re-study them.  So many people have been thrown into this by the rough economic circumstances in our country.  Jobs have been lost, finances are tight, and many people have needed to redefine themselves.  New career paths have been forged, lifestyles have needed to adapt, and we have chosen (or been forced) to re-prioritize.

In much the same way, we might want to use springtime to see our work and home environments anew.  Do our spaces feel like they still fit our tastes and lifestyle, or do they seem like outdated decisions that haven’t kept up with our ever-changing selves?

And so this is yet another type of RE-…

Defined as the act of reconstructing, of making over in structure or style, remodeling is all about changing and altering.

While many of us prefer to stay in the comfort of the familiar, change has the powerful ability to inject new life into something that has come to feel ordinary.  Now let’s not panic, it's not necessary for you to take on a huge costly remodel that might make your checkbook quiver. There is a whole range of remodeling, from simple minor accents to deeper extreme renovations.  All provide the opportunity to breathe new life into the spaces we occupy.

So here are some ideas to re-invigorate your spaces. From little to big…
  • Change the color scheme.  This can be done by changing up the accents in a room (ie. Pillows, frames, rugs, etc.).  Keep the neutrals, but add a bright blue, yellow, or green touch of color. It’s best to stick to one added color, and use it repeatedly in the space.
  • Repaint a wall to boldly change the color scheme.
  • Re-upholster something.  A new color or texture of fabric can do wonders to a tired old couch or chair.
  • Sand down wood furniture pieces and re-stain in a different color. Try changing the light colored maple to a deep espresso or mahogany color. 
  • Repaint an older piece of furniture giving it new life.
  • Change bed linens and duvets, bringing new color into the room.  This can completely transform a bedroom.
  • Fill clear glass vases with water and stalks of fresh green bamboo.  This brings springtime indoors without needing a green thumb! 
  • Change dining room table centerpiece and/or table runner.  This can be a simple way to redress the room. For example try a glass bowl with an arrangement of beautiful succulents set into a sand base.  The green and eggplant colors of the succulents bring nature indoors. 
  • Create a new outdoor living room that extends your indoor space out to the yard.  Adding a fireplace can help to define the outdoor space so it feels more like a room.
  • Transform your access to the outdoors by utilizing a multi-slider or bifold series of doors that enhance the opening, making the division between indoors and outdoors disappear!

“Spring is the time of plans and projects.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

So this week enjoy Passover, enjoy Easter, and revive the Spring in your step!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful words, Karen! Miss you, but sounds like you are doing well. And I appreciated your suggestion of bifold or multislide doors - we had an idea to do that and haven't pursued it!