The change of seasons has begun and the sweet smell of Fall rain has filled the towering woods around my home. Tonight the air is delicious. You can almost taste Fall through the breeze ruffling the curtains.
May be this has been a hard season for you, the ending of summer brought storms of all kinds to our nation. Hurricanes, Cyber-security breaches, Personal turmoil. Perhaps you could use the cool refreshment of Fall in your home.
Coming here today to this little log home filled with wild children, you might see the fort built right by the driveway. As the children were building, they tip-toed inside to deposit these precious leaves on my desk. It reminded me of you, dear friend. It reminded me that friendship and beauty often come as surprise gifts. Unexpected. Much needed.
As you are simplifying and creating your home anew this Fall, you may want to consider frugal ways to celebrate how seasons change in our homes and our lives. In my journey towards minimalism, I realized that the decoration in the stores this time of year were expensive imitations of the real items. I was shocked at the prices and the seeming insanity of my previous choices..... I had decor that was plastic leaves. I'm embarrassed to say I had hundred of plastic Fall leaves that were given to me! Plastic. Leaves. The materialist culture we live in has trained us that "plastic" decor is normal, when truly the most frugal options are the ones grown and given outside our front doorsteps. Or brought in by muddy children. Beauty I was just stepping over or sweeping away, inconvenienced by the truest of gifts.
Perhaps you are in a new season or grieving the messes of previous times. Maybe you could use a fresh start, the coolness of a new perspective on life and home. What would it look like to clear away the fake, plastic parts of life and use the real instead, the beauty that is brushing your fingertips? What if you could find beauty (and wealth) in hidden spaces?
I had to ask myself if shopping the clearance racks was my best life anymore. Didn't it make more sense to hike the Metro park and pick up real leaves instead? I asked myself how could I clear away all the seasonal decorations I had stashed in the basement and just use what was truly available in that season. Asking the right question was key. When I saw that I could use what was in season, everything changed in an instant! I saw beauty everywhere. The wildflowers beside the road. The pine cones in the ditch next to the corner stop sign. Vines wrapped around the garden gate.
I brought the outside world inside to CREATE anew without the price tag, without the plastic that kills our world's resources and our souls, without the press of having to look like my friends' homes that were magazine perfect. My house has dirt. I'm guessing perhaps yours does too. I don't apologize and neither should you.
My real family lives here, and suddenly instead of pushing the kids aside so I could decorate, I brought them right into the celebration. If the leaves got shredded, it's o.k. God will make more. Pine cones chewed on by the toddler? Gross, but there's more outside. Sticks used as swords? Take that back outside boys! Now!
Decor should mark a celebration, not an expense. Color should come when you decide it's time, not based on when a consumer culture starts it's seasonal sales. Your home, and your life, should reflect your principles and values, not that of a retail chain. You can CREATE a frugal, and yet powerful, cohesive decor that brings delight and joy in each changing of season. If you are ready to dive into more simplicity in your home, schedule, and finances, you are welcome to pick up my free 3-part guide to simplicity below.
May you collect color and joy-filled memories with your family today by engaging with the natural beauty provided around you.