Monday, November 4, 2013

Simple Pleasures


My first embroidery projects, cute dinosaurs from Urban Threads.

Perhaps it's the weather, growing colder and darker and chasing me indoors earlier, or perhaps it's simply growing out of things, but I'm finding great comfort and happiness in simpler things these days.

And I won't lie, it feels a bit like I'm cheating on my younger self. The young punk-rock feminist who partied all night and looked down her nose at homemakers and sneered at things like handicrafting... despite having been able to crochet and sew for as long as she could remember. What can I say? I was a total shit head for a little while. Things like bar-hopping, hosting huge parties, being combative with people I disagree with, meeting lots of people and expending all of my energy stores in a nonstop effort to expand my friend circle, no longer hold much attraction or pleasure for me.

I've become something of a homebody in training lately; I still enjoy going out and doing things, but quieter things with one or two people. Bar crawls are being replaced by brunch, afternoon walks in the park and tea dates with lady friends. After hosting my annual giant 30+ person Hallowe'en party this year, I was exhausted and feeling unfulfilled; wishing I had opted for a more intimate gathering so I could have spent more time with each of my guests, rather than flutter and feel pulled in 31 directions between conversing and hostessing. And I'm actually pruning my friend circle right now, keeping in contact with only those people who make me truly happy and leaving one sided relationships behind, which is easy when you've been the one putting forth all of the effort to remain in contact.

Lately, I'm happiest when I'm laying on the couch with my head in Joe's lap, Luna and the kitties curled up with us watching a movie or reading a book. I find that I'm more interested in domestic crafts. My passion for working on my second (overly ambitious?) quilting project has been reignited lately, I'm teaching myself to embroider and cross-stitch (geeky, sarcastic and snarky subjects, of course), I'm yearning to pull out the yarn stash and just crochet for the heck of it.

I'm taking great pleasure in having a tidy home filled with our own artwork, handmade furniture, books and collections. Laying in the beautiful bed that my husband built for me flipping through Christmas magazines from a few years ago (I haven't bought any this year, yet) under the string lights we hung from the headboard makes me feel akin to a princess. Designing pieces of furniture to make my office and our eat-in-kitchen more functional fills me with the warm fuzzies and when I decorate something new; add a little something to a table, the mantle, what have you... I feel like I've accomplished something incredible and using that space makes me happy.

The urge to once more take up a pen to write letters and postcards, rather than exchanging emails and social media quips, is powerful. There is little that I enjoy more than finding a little something or other in the mailbox from a dear friend or family member. We're working on handmade gifts for the holidays, giving our time and energy rather than money and hopefully creating something more meaningful.

And my homesteading dreams become more and more important to me each day. Hopefully, with a little bit of hard work and money, we can get started with bringing some of those dreams in to reality... starting with some chickens and a few fruit and nut trees. In the meantime I'm window shopping in magazines and catalogues, dog-earring pages in books and manuals.

I think, now that I've come to terms with the changes and have started to let go of clinging to things that no longer serve me, that this simple life suits me.

7 comments:

  1. I know what you mean, Danni. I am to the point where a nice dinner party is better to me than a big party. That is not to say that my Halloween party wasn't fun, but a smaller get together would have been just a nice, if not better.

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  2. I know what you mean :) I went through a similar process when I was 21 (which was the last time I ever got drunk, too). Smaller, simpler things are more meaningful, more fulfilling to me. Take a deep breath and enjoy!

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  4. I'm with Oma, in the general thoughts, but someone I don't find it all that scary... Life will tell, right?

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  5. Nice. I like much. I really like your new photo heading too.

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  6. Simpler is so much better. I liked this post very much, as it resonates with my goals too.

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  7. I'm with you as well. My younger self would be horrified by all the domesticity that I've embraced in my 30s. Seriously. I am becoming my mother with all this handicrafting. Knitting, canning, scrapbooking. It's just insane. And yet, I'm so much happier now doing it than I am when I'm out at some big party. It took me a long time to figure that out and make peace with it, but there you have it... staying home and being creative makes me happiest.

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