This week’s musings are on cultivating contentment and recognising what is important to us right now, and equally, what is not important. This is not about giving up on progress but about simply accepting where we are.
Try the wee exercise below and see if it helps you feel more content by recognising and releasing demands and expectations on certain areas of life. This started with me journaling my thoughts and it turned into an interesting format – it reminds me of a lot of the book of Proverbs in the Bible, with the two opposites shown in the one line.
The following post was written almost exactly 3 years ago when our third child was a few months old. I was relieved that I had not succumbed to PND again but was trying to verbalise my thoughts on moving forward. I hope it is of use and encouragement to those in the murky after. ❤
While you hear and see quite a bit about depression in all forms, you don’t often hear about the murky, grey area of post recovery. There are people telling their story from a distant perspective, telling of their darkest of days now that they’re better. There are people who write about it in the thick of it, and there are some in the in-between, like I was when I first wrote “So”.
Can you believe it’s the beginning of March? How are you getting on with your goals and word of the year, if you have them? This blog has certainly helped me be mindful of mine and less worried about perfection! I’ve really enjoyed taking the time to write out a few thoughts and ideas on creativity and homemaking to share with you all.
In the midst of the busyness of looking after 4 children and a kitchen renovation (pics on Instagram), looking after the house is no mean feat, let alone finding time for creativity. I have found, however, that there is freedom to be found in daily routines and rhythms.
I don’t know about you, but there’s always requests for snacks in this house, even 10 minutes after having just eaten! Since I don’t want to fill the kids up with chocolate and sugar but nothing of substance, I like to keep an eye out for good snack recipes. I’ll be honest, I haven’t found that many but this fruity flapjack recipe is always a hit. The original recipe is on the Lidl website and is easy and adaptable. Today, I’m sharing an apple version with a few wee tweaks.
We’ve been thinking a lot about creativity and it’s importance and what it means to us over the past few weeks. I wanted to pause for a minute and share this poem. Some of you may have read it before. To me, this in an example of using creativity to express deep and complicated thoughts and emotions and to document a certain time period. This postnatal depression poem is only a snippet of all that I felt but I’m so glad I documented it at the time.
As I am in the new(ish) baby phase again for the second time since having postnatal depression, I can’t help but reflect on that time in my life. I am grateful for all I have learned because of it. If that is your reality just now, please know you’re not alone and you can get through it. It took me a few years but I got there. Use your own judgement on whether to continue reading as it may be triggering for you ❤.
My love of lavender started about 6 years ago while I was looking into alternative solutions for dealing with depression. That is a whole thing in itself that I’m not going into just now. I bought some lavender and clary sage essential oils and haven’t been without them since. These simple lavender sachets help bed linens smell lovely and add a soothing scent. To be honest, I really don’t know if they do anything as such, but, I do find the smell really comforting and cheers me up.
When we first moved here almost 5 years ago, I put a few drops of clary sage or lavender on my pillow every night to make me feel at home, and even now it’s my favourite way to get ready for sleep. It’s funny that I remember using them most when I felt most distressed and yet it holds no bad memories for me… anyway. Long story short, I love lavender. Real lavender. I don’t like the fake stuff.
As a mum and homemaker it can be so hard to see your own creativity in the midst of washing and cooking and tidying and nappy changes and refereeing… I feel tired just writing that 😂 but it’s true. It’s so easy to get lost in the glorious madness and feel it’s a battle of housework vs creativity.
I have gone to both extremes in my 8 years of married life, from ignoring the housework and sewing all day to ignoring my sewing and focusing on housework all day. Neither makes me happy. I enjoyed the sewing but the mess and the hungry family with no dinner ready was not fair to anyone. When I try to be diligent and focus on the house and routines and washing and tidying, I very quickly start to feel choked because creativity is important to me.
Continuing with our creativity at home theme for the month, here are some easy ways to be creative at home using what you probably already have. I want to show you that you don’t need special tools, a paintbrush and a canvas or a needle and thread to be creative at home. All these things are achievable, and, even if you do one of them today for 5 minutes, I hope you’ll enjoy the process. Remember, this is about daily exercise, not the Olympics 😉
When my cupboards are running low, I love to have simple recipes with just a few ingredients to fall back on. Shortbread is one of these, with it only needing 3 main ingredients and some jazzing up with vanilla and chocolate!
Shop bought biscuits (or cookies for my American friends) seem a bit sad after having proper homemade treats made with real butter and good quality chocolate like this shortbread.
In January we looked at a few basic questions regarding creativity, and this month the topics will be specifically about creativity in the home. So, first if all, why should you be creative at home? We’ve looked at why creativity is important and what it means to be creative, but why should we focus some of these creative energies at home?
The purpose of this blog is to work together towards a simpler and more creative life, to be content with what we have. In order for us to progress along that path, we need to understand why this is important for us. Without a why that we truly believe in, there’s no underlying motivation to keep us going. This will look different for everyone, and that’s a wonderful thing.
Ok, so let’s get going. Why should we then, be creative at home?