Our living space reflects our needs. A woman needs balance and calm. Where else can she find contentment if not in the privacy of her own home?
Life is crazy! We, women over 50, have the freedom to come and go as we please. Our children have left the nest. We are recreating ourselves by going back to school, traveling the world, starting a new career, retiring and running wild with freedom, doing charity work and taking care of grandchildren. Whatever we are doing, we are on the move and I am smiling.
It was important for me to learn to incorporate total calmness in our home to survive the constant tumult in my daily life. The first two are self-explanatory and worth your while. My musings today will focus in detail on my third solution — how I maintain calm within the four walls of my home.
- I tell myself. “I am grateful I am busy outside of my four walls. I am grateful I am calm within my four walls.”
- I breathe. I learned this helpful tip from my daughter who gifted me with a stone in nature’s green. It says, “breathe.” It sits on my desk because that is where I am the most stressed. Breathing physically makes me relax and breathing slowly gives me time to think. It reminds me to be calm.
How to keep your home calm
My home is an extension of who I am and the interior has great influence over my mood. My environment influences my emotional health and therefore, my happiness.
My ‘workplace’ is a zen-like haven. Visualization is key for me. I purposely begin my day early, watching the sun come up over Lake Michigan in my apartment in the sky.
- Sound. There is not a sound to be heard except the coffee machine humming out fresh brewed coffee. I love the quiet of the day. I am at peace.
- Desk. I feel like I am on vacation when I sit at my desk overlooking the harbor filled with boats. I purposely placed my desk facing East because the lake reminds me of my love for the Pacific Ocean.
- Keepsakes. On my desk I have some of my favorite keepsakes and memories. My shell in a glass box, my rock from Israel from my grandson Robbie, my rock from my daughter that reads “breathe” and my magic wand that always makes me feel safe. This sets a mood of tranquility.
- Goals. It is my time to chart my course for the day by writing out organized notes. I send emails to girlfriends and to honey bee helpers. I text my grandchildren and my children and I begin writing my musings. I wake Orchid, who is ill, to give her the pills she must take every morning at 6 a.m. All of this is done within my four walls during the silence of the day.
Set up systems to bring calm into my home
A ‘system for organization’: Everything in my home is organized. I have my systems because without organization there is havoc.
My closet is color and item coded. I do the same with my shoes. When I walk into my closet I don’t have to think about where anything is. I know.
My bath is organized in the same manner. I have clear, plastic sectioned trays in my make-up drawers and the same in my bath closet. I love my trays. I can wash them and see all of my products.
My perfume tray: I sigh peacefully when I look at my large clear Lucite perfume tray. I only have three bottles of perfume and I wear them all. I have two crystal butterflies in powder blue and salmon from friends and a crystal angel in lavender given to me by a best girlfriend, Sharon. I also have a little pearl bracelet a grand gave me for my birthday, a jar filled with powder puffs and a Jay Strongwater vase for my flowers. So during the day and evening, I am in a peaceful setting as I put on my make-up. Turn your bath area into a small space of your own with some of your favorite things.
Our bedroom: My side end table is kept very simple, by choice. I have my beautiful clock, a picture of my ultimate concierge and myself, a crystal heart from one of my daughters, a small vase and my favorite book that has been by my bed side since I was in my early 20s, “Gift from the Sea.”
My papers: I was falling short for awhile in organizing my papers. My mind felt as cluttered as the array of papers laying in disorganized piles and scattered in different rooms. I solved my problem with low standing file cabinets that more or less disappear because I had granite tops made for them and put my favorite family photos and keepsakes on the beautiful granite. When I walk into the room my eyes only take in the photos and keepsakes, not the file drawers. I know many of you may use folders on your computers, but I prefer my way.
Don’t be a saver. I suggest you go on a “charity binge.” Someone will love what you no longer wear, sit on, drink out of, serve on, etc. It is the most cleansing feeling to part with items that have been on your shelves or in your closet for years. Just do it!
Our living space reflects our needs. Our need for balance. Our need for calm. Where else can we find this, but behind our four walls?
My important needs
Throughout our home I have placed my favorite keepsakes from loved ones. These items make me happy and bring back memories which provide contentment. Orchids and large green trees around the house bring nature into my life, a must for happiness and peace. Art, especially our camels making love by Larry Rivers in our formal living room, make me laugh and feel relaxed every day! I love to laugh. The view of my beautiful Chicago and Lake Michigan from the 71st floor brings awe and I feel gratitude for my lifestyle, but the most important need behind my four walls is my husband and ultimate concierge, Sheldon Good, and my devoted pooch, Orchid Good.
If you like some of my ideas and think they will make your home life more comfortable, bring out your grandmother’s candlesticks or your grandchild’s gift to hang or place somewhere for your eyes to behold. Put some of your favorite pieces next to your bedside and if you don’t have a perfume tray, purchase one and put favorites on it beside perfume. Most importantly, walk up to your partner, give him a kiss and tell him you are grateful you have him in your life. Also pat your pooch and give him or her a delicious mouth-watering treat!