August 14, 2011

wabi-sabi life

the idea of wabi-sabi is far more complex than can be described in words.

the simplest way to define the japanese concept is to say that it's the art of finding beauty in imperfection.
i've never really searched for further explanation, generally satisfied with that one, in terms of handmade items, quality and heirloom tradition over quantity and mass-production, that sort of thing. i've also applied the term loosely to what i want in a home, relishing the imperfection in a well-lived home full of love, adding elements of nature within the confines of man-made walls, and not being so picky anymore about whether or not the towels are properly folded after the kids dry their hands in the bathroom.

i teeter between OCD and who gives a fuck. it's pretty extreme, i know. on one hand i want a minimalistic model-home and on the other i want use to be surrounded by things to do and things that make us happy.

the other day, after being in a mood, the universe gave me a huge knock-down, ass-whooping, slap in the face. the kind that prevented my usual suppression of some stuff. friday was a very emotionally raw day. yesterday was emotionally numb. today is better.

i'm potty training sprout (who is doing fabulously, by the way). i must admit, it wasn't my plan to start that this weekend but i followed his lead and we've ran with it since yesterday morning. with my grandma watching the littles while i work, there will be no break in momentum or consistency so i figured there was no reason NOT to start yesterday even if i would have rather stayed in bed.
today, in the middle of frequent baby potty breaks, i'm cleaning my house and working on finally making it mine. my bedroom has been second to last on my list of priorities. my craft area/sitting room is actually last and it makes me sad. i don't know why but i guess i felt like i needed to get things in order for everyone else first and then maintain certain standards before i could comfortably get into decorating and organizing simply for myself.
*these standards seemingly don't apply to the fifteen year old who keeps his room like the typical teenage pig-sty...that is about to change but i have to pick my battles with him and it's one thing at a time.

today is the day.

i used to have two simple, sheer curtain panels hung up on my ceiling, over a futon with a pink star lamp in between them. this was in the apartment i lived in before i moved in with awesome papa. it was the most inspired and magical bedroom i've ever had, the one that most represented the calm, relaxing, refreshing (and sexy!) oasis i'd always wanted in a bedroom. the bedroom that awesome papa and i shared in his house was the complete opposite. there's no other way to put it. it sucked. in my bedroom, our first child together was made, in the one we shared at his home, our first child was born. that was it's only positive quality.

i have since yearned for a similar feeling in the bedroom we've created together, in our new home. i asked him about hanging up the panels again and i got a mix of no-answer and no, he wasn't impressed with that idea so i dropped it. i'd washed them and hung them to dry twice since we moved in, unsure what i was going to do with them. today, i was sick of seeing them still hanging neatly on a towel rack in the bathroom and considered putting them in a storage bin but then thought, what the heck? i need to do some positive decorating this weekend, not just practical organizing. because of the big-ass ceiling fan above our bed, i only hung up one panel, instead of both. i removed two wall hangings that were above our bed because i'm not quite wabi-sabi at heart enough, i guess. they were both 14" x 14" squares and evenly spaced inbetween one another, but not with the sides of the bed. with the new panel hanging above them, their off-centered-ness was very obvious and bothered me. i don't know that i'll re-hang them or not, but this is the current feeling above my bed right now and i love it.

i have much else to do today. when i woke, i didn't want to do any of it. i wanted to sit on the couch with coffee and yarn and knit the day away. i'm glad that i didn't - i haven't taken much of a break today (well not until i fed the littles lunch and sat down to type this out) and i'm still motivated. could cleaning and decorating be a new and healthy coping mechanism? *gulp* nevermind, i don't want to invite more upheavel into my life just to find out, but i'm glad that for whatever reason i'm moving forward today, taking steps to make this house more mine and discovering joy in my comfortable (yet imperfect) life and home.

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