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Tidy isn’t the Same as Clean

Look around at my house and most of the time, it is tidy. I try to pick up after the mini tornado creators every day and a half. The feeling I have seeing no clutter beats the chaos I feel when I look around and see stuff everywhere. But there’s still the layer below that that niggles at me. The secret filth that I know is lurking everywhere that I will never conquer.Tidy isn't the same as clean on Shalavee.com

There’s the grease that flies around the kitchen because there’s no exhaust fan in there. It covers the back stairs and the fan and the top of the refrigerator. Eventually, I stab at it with degreaser but really there’s no winning that war. Until I get an exhaust fan.

There’s the scuffed up dirty wooden floors that need to be revamped and haven’t seen a good mopping in I can’t remember how long. Clean doesn’t comprise just vacuuming but when the floors look this bad, who cares.Tidy isn't the same as clean on Shalavee.com

There’s the layers of dust in hard places I can’t see that are too hard to reach. And the filth under the appliances that are too hard to move to care to get to. See, there’s an understanding that dirt is literally lurking everywhere and while I take a stab at scrubbing it off the windows every season and waxing my kitchen floor every month, there will never ever be a moment when I am alive that this house will be clean.Tidy isn't the same as clean on Shalavee.com

So I settle for tidy. And hope no one with white gloves comes for a visit.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

They Do As They See

We all mean well as parents. Well most of us. We mess up trying to overcompensate for the advantages we didn’t have as children. We spoil them and we coddle them when all they really need is our undivided attention and our faith in them. But the one thing many of us seem to overlook is that how we treat ourselves shows them how to treat themselves. And that is only a good story if we are good to ourselves.

There is a woman at the exercise gym I belong to who teaches several fitness classes. And her hyper self-loathing comes out when she talks about her body. And we all disagree with her but she judges herself so harshly. And she has a daughter and two sons.They Do As They See on Shalavee.com

I have busted myself for self-bullying within the past year so I am very empathetic to this pattern of behavior. Both societal messages of women’s worth and our inherited ancestral low self-esteem have conspired against us to create these running dialogues. Damaging enough until we consider that, unchecked, we will pass these hateful messages on to our daughters. Because they do what they see, not what we tell them to do. They respond to the mirrors we have of ourselves as much if not more than the mirrors of love and worth we think we’re doing so well to reflect to them.They Do As They See on Shalavee.com

The opposite of hate is love. The opposite of judgment is compassion. If we can even be aware of what we are doing to ourselves and talk with our daughters about their amazing value as thinkers and kind and creative souls then we could change the tide of self-bullying. To show our children, boys and girls, what it means to be human and compassionate and honest is truly the kind of parenting we want to be doing instead.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Fear’s Worst Casualty is Hope

Today was a breakthrough day for me. A gorgeous June day with a breeze that lifted your spirit upwards. So I went out to the backyard and I gardened. Not a big deal to anyone else but a huge deal to me. I haven’t allowed myself to garden in a long time. And this decision has just left me feeling hopeless. For years.Fear's Worst Casualty on Shalavee.com

The cause has been so many things, but mostly, I gave up. Fear of not doing it well enough or not having the talent, time, money, or whatever other lie fear will tell you and “see ya’ later” soul gratifying thing. I then slipped into a hopelessness cloud for which I have found no escape. That is until today when I walked outside and began again.

By far the cruelest thing our fear brain does to us while it’s trying to keep us safe, is to rob us of hope. Hope is the breeze on which we fly to the future. But our fear brains think that to keep us safe from harm, they must keep us away from anything that may change us or our lives. Change is bad and hope insinuates change. So therefore, hope is out.

To rob a person of their hope is to give them a living walking death sentence. Without hope, you are just a zombie going through the motions. This is the cruelest of sentences to pass on someone especially yourself and yet, many are the years when I have felt the hopelessness spread over months without a reprieve.Fear's Worst Casualty on Shalavee.com

And yet, the smallest spark can be made from a word or a comment or a thought that you “could”. And then the dimmest light of hope is lit inside for an outcome that is different. A craving for a change and the way that might impact your life in even the smallest way. A hope for unity and purpose. A hope for quieting the chaos and for connection and calm.

And it all starts with pulling a few weeds and moving a few worms.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

My Empty Box Method

When I had to shut my business down (See the post about Bally Eden) and bring the contents of my shop home, all my stuff ended up in boxes piled to the ceiling of the garage. I advertised a yard sale and set to work sorting through my stuff. And what I realized yet again, was that your plan needs an empty box or space to sort into. When you have one foot nailed to the ground, it’s an sign that you may need to open up a new space to sort and move you and your thoughts into. So I cleared a corner and placed empty boxes there and began.

I am moving into a different space of possibilities. Like an empty box I put there in my brain so that I could move my thoughts on and sort them into. The shift was from impossibility to probability. And the room opened up. There’s more room to work with. There’s comfortable spots to have a seat with myself and intuit my next step.My Empty Box Method on Shalavee.com

When I have an auto-fearful thought, I challenge its validity, I write it out in my journal, I call a friend, and I engage in compassion and creativity hard to not let that thought become the thought/feeling/action triangle that shuts me down.

When I see that I am drowning in too many possibilities and too many options, I am taking time to sort through and put aside what I can’t do now. And question what I think I should do as opposed to what I want to do. And I’m packing this stuff away in boxes. Because sometimes just letting something sit for a while and returning to it later can provide enough perspective to know exactly what to do with it.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Being on Purple : The Good Girl Control

At my daughter’s school, the children’s behavior is monitored daily by a stoplight inspired grading system. If you’ve behaved yourself , you get on a green status. If you received a warning, its yellow. And a bad choice will get you to red status and probably get you sent to a principal’s waiting room, or maybe that’s just what I remember. But the most insipid of all is the purple. Because that represents better than good behavior and it’s all my daughter seems to want. To be the good girl.

When she’s at school, she thinks she needs to make sure that she is liked and fits in so no one votes her off the island. But the minute she’s off the bus and in my company, she let’s it all hang out mostly to our mutual detriment. Six-year-olds are immense people-pleasers and they are also control freaks. So she is trying to get a purple so hard everyday that I think it’s sending her over the edge when she doesn’t get it.Being on Purple : The Good Girl Control on Shalavee.com

So this morning, after another night and day of not so stellar choices and listening, we missed our bus for the first time ever. And as I drove her to school, I started to realize and discuss with her how striving for that purple might be messing with her. And that perhaps, she could just go ahead and be the sweet kind and helpful little gal that she always is and that when she was rewarded with the purple as she often seems to be especially on Fridays, she could be surprised and happy.

Teach her to reject likeability.

Her job is not to make herself likeable,

her job is to be her full self…”

–Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie–

The Good Girl programming is a little pervasive and creepy. That we as girls are taught to be mindful of others’ expectations and needs instead of rewarded for being kind people and taking care of ourselves in marvelous caring ways, is just society’s flaw. But let us as parents try to counteract these expectations by encouraging them to be proud of just who they are and not what they do. And to care for themselves with the same compassion and effort as they are asked to give to others.Being on Purple : The Good Girl Control on Shalavee.com

Purple is a beautiful color to earn. Especially if you can enjoy it just because it is the way life made you and your day based on the choices you made with integrity and joy.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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