[Inspired by an article: Chi In My Home, from the Canadian Schools of Feng Shui]
Happy ReNEW Year, my dear!
In the spirit of the new year and – a Kong Hei Fat Choy to you, my darling! – I’ll share some of the things I’m renewing these days.
I just got back from one glorious trip back home to Manila. Oh, oh, glorrrrrious to the maximum! I still get tingly all over thinking about it all. I, with my two boys, celebrated the New Year and our birthdays (I share Jan. 15 with my BFF sister, Leslie ;)) with side trips to Tagaytay, HongKong and Baguio, stays in three different hotels – oh I love, LOVE hotels and their clean sheets! – Mariott in Manila, Taal Vista in Tagaytay and Camp John Hay’s Manor and of course, visiting some of our favorite eating places – People’s Palace, Mang Inasal (with it’s unlimited rice!) and Jollibee burgers: 2 Yumburger w/ Cheese please for Sol and 2 cheeseless ones for Joshim. What a delicious vacation that was.
Happy Re-New Mission
All re-charged and re-newed and back to re-ality for me. Re-peat! Re-wind! :p Back to reality means back to getting things in order here in the home in preparation for back-to-school for our boys. Back to the routines for me and the whole family. YEHEY. :p Ok, ok, hold the sarcasm, Chiquita.
I’ve been on a mission since 4:30am* to declutter three areas of our home: my office/studio, the master bedroom and the kids’ rooms. In the middle of it all the tossing out of old papers from another box of stuff in my office (I am a shameless paper hoarder) I came across a Canadian Schools of Feng Shui handout most likely given to us by our Feng Shui master-in-the-making brother, Joe. He has been sharing with me, in earnest, stuff that seem a bit weird in the beginning but the more I look into it, the more it makes sense! And I am all about making sense these days. Especially New Year days. So let’s begin.
In The Beginning
There are may things written regarding the Chi (energy) in the home. In this particular article, there are 14. I’m most interested in #2, Deteriorating Chi: Do not keep dried flowers in the home for more than 4-6 weeks, #3, Stale Chi: Keep the chi flowing in all rooms by using them or rearranging objects in them, #4, Closets: Most common area for stale energy (passing on unwanted or not-used objects creates a more positive energy flow) and #12: Under the bed: Do not store things under the bed and forget about them. There should be a clear space for a restful sleep. Oh, and #14, Entry Way: Chi needs to enter a clutter free, foliage free space and not around anything broken, or it will bring “broken energy” into the home.
Ack! Feng Shui, if you were at all true, then the chi in my home is doomed! Or has been for too long now. My mom has always had them decorative style dried flowers so I did, too. Who knew?!? I’m throwing out this big jar of potpourri sitting in the living room as soon as I finish writing this. Whether this one’s true or not, I’m not risking it on a jar of dead plants. Moving on.
Regarding #3, I do notice a refreshed, reenergized feeling whenever I move things around in the house especially after an energizing vacuuming under the couches or beds. Now I’m not sure if that’s from the energy flowing or simply the oxygen flowing through my body from the workout.
And Out of The Closet!
This is where I’ve gotten trapped. And more recently, winning. Confessional #2564: I’m lazy with recycling/purging/giving away clothes. There, I said it. I’m out! It’s not so much that I’m selfish which I am, but with my clothes, I get attached to my old stuff (read: senti), and let’s face it, they are more comfortable on one’s body. A friend, Renjie, has an old shirt with so many holes in it and he loves wearing them on weekends on his chill time. It’s hideous. But comfy! So I get it. My comfy clothes are nothing to look at (and don’t look anything like Renjie’s naman), I wouldn’t dare get out of the house or even answer the door bell in them. But I value comfort over style eh! Also, there’s that other thing. This sentimental attachment to stuff poses a problem though. Especially when the closets and drawers and begin to bulge and break because they’re beyond capacity with all these well-loved comfy clothing.
Love Is The Answer
Solution: The Love Meter and The Blue Bags Boogie, my version of Peter Walsh’s Trash Bag Tango. I learned the “love meter” system from one of Oprah’s shows on easier decluttering. The organizing coach said, if torn between keeping and tossing something from your closet, just ask the question: Do I love this piece of not? Whenever the answer begins with a “Yes, but… (it’s too tight/big/bright/etc.) or an “Ummmm, I think I can…”, don’t think. Toss. Only absolute “I love this!” for me. This has been very difficult. VERY. But I’ve prevailed. I’ve been at this Battle with the Basura (garbage) since the beginning of winter. As of last count, I’ve given away twelve extra large bags of old clothes. In less than two months. 12. Winner. This is how much clothes clutter has piled up in my house. No more. Next!
Under the bed??? And I thought IKEA made those huge boxes for me to get more organized and not so I can sleep restlessly! I don’t know about this one. If one has five family members and limited storage space, wouldn’t under the bed be a smart spot to keep the stuff? As long as they’re organized and not garbage piled? Then again, the storage space in the basement can take some purging and the garage can definitely handle a second, third and fourth decluttering. Ok, lazy bones, no more excuses. Give them unloved stuff away already.
And after I throw out the dried flowers, I’m putting away all the shoes, slippers and boots by the entrance and declaring a two pairs per person rule. It is late so I think I’ve done my share of clearing and cleaning for the day.
The Blue Bag Boogie and Me
Peter Walsh will be in my iPod for the next few days for extra motivation with the garbage-bag-a-day routine. I used to think this was too much. There’s always someone “in the family” that could use the extra can opener. But I have extra everything and it’s clearly weighing down my home. Enough is enough. Hello, Blue Bag Boogie! Why blue, you ask? So I can see what trash is in what bag. Oi! Even in purging, OC pa rin.
It’s an all-out war on clutter and I’m determined to win this one blue bag boogie battle at a time.
*Just jetlag, my dear. I am not normally this chirpy. :p