Living Deliberately

During breaks in studying, or perhaps just due to a need to relieve stress, I've been cleaning house. Yesterday I straightened up the living room, bedroom, and cleaned and mopped the floor in the dining room. I even rearranged some furniture.

I found the whole process to be very rewarding, particularly ending it all by placing a big bowl of grapefruit on the dining room table. I think it all looks welcoming. And even better, it accommodates our lifestyle.

It got me thinking about how when our lives are so busy, when our obligations are so many that we just can't add anything to them, we lose the chance to sit back and arrange our lives in a pleasing way. That's what happens around here. And all the piles of things accumulating all around, they limit us too.

After yesterday's nesting, I felt washed clean and on top of things. And I got the phrase in my head, "living deliberately." I want to do more of this.

The photo is not so great, but it shows the fruits of my labor, and my loved ones enjoying breakfast.

Here is some Thoreau for you, where living deliberately must have come from, in the archives of my memory (we're talking 10th grade literature class):
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.
Still a good lesson, after all these years. Leafing through the book (we actually have a copy of it believe it or not) I found another quote of his: "I love my fate to the very core and rind."

I'd like to adopt that attitude too.


  1. True words to live by, thanks for the reminder!

  2. I would also like to do more of these things. Laundry is helping me keep the stress at bay on my last day of school today. Good luck with everything. It will be great to be finished and have a clean house at the same time!

  3. It's amazing how a neat and tidy, pleasing space can make you feel so very happy. Congrats getting everything tidied! And I loved the Thoreau.

  4. This made me laugh at I've changed.

    I came from a boring, rural area, lots of quiet.

    When we studied transcendentalism and Thoreau, I wrote a horrible, but scathing satirical poem.

    I remember one line: "There goes Thoreau, sitting in a tree, transcending from what? A hungry wood flea?"

    I wanted city clutter, speed, chaos.

    Now I know better!

  5. I guess I pictured my life like a Shaker community. Quiet, clock ticking, people staring......

  6. Your right...having a space that is neat and tidy goes so far in helping one feel happy. I'm smiling because this post reminded me of when I was in college. My house never got cleaner than when I had a big test to study for or a project to work on because cleaning/rearranging is my way of procrastinating (not saying that's what you were doing) :P

  7. How timely! I'm going off to do some tidying so I can get my house, and my soul, feeling in order once again. I love the photo of your efforts!

  8. Amy,
    You have a beautiful blog! And I especially liked this post - thank you for the gentle reminder.
    Also wanted to thank you for stopping by my blog and to tell you how I did the 'skinny-me-up' photos in photoshop. I just figured out within the last couple of weeks - I go under the filters and liquify the picture. I then adjust the size of the brush in relation to the picture and use the warp tool to just gently push the bulging part of the picture in to it's proper place
    I've seen demos where that takes about 45min - 1hr to do the entire person, but I've NEVER spent more than 5 minutes adjusting pictures. If you ever have any pictures you'd like me to take a crack at, I'd be more than glad to help! (As long as I can use them for my portfolio that is)
    Thanks again for stopping by, and just let me know if you have any more questions or want some help. Much love and God Bless!

  9. Ahh, I love that quote! Such truth in those words.


I always, always, always love comments. (Okay, except maybe not the nasty ones.)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...