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The story of our precious little girl's 17 months of life with Trisomy 18 (July 4, 2010 - December 15, 2011) and of us, re-learning to live "after Lilly."
"I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ...." Psalm 139:14

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The book list - June

Life has been extra busy around here the last two months.  Even though I've been reading several books, I only managed to finish one in June.

Hunter has discovered the thrill of chapter books!  Here he is reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  He still prefers reading repair manuals, but is now willing to broaden his horizons some.

Feng Shui That Makes Sense: Easy Ways to Create a Home that FEELS as Good as it Looks by Cathleeen McCandless - I've heard of "feng shui" (pronounced "fung shway") off and on over the years, but never really knew what it was.  I had a vague definition that it was some weird superstitious ancient Chinese stuff.  But this year, I kept hearing "feng shui" enough that I finally decided to educate myself about it..  So I went to our local library took check out their collection of feng shui books.  I was dismayed the books were tucked into their New Age/Mystical section.  I almost dismissed the idea again, but finally settled on Feng Shui That Makes Sense written by an American feng shui consultant that has been in the business over 20 years.

Wow - what an interesting book!  Some is still rather foreign to my American way of thinking, but much of it makes sense.  Chinese feng shui has been around for about 4000 years.  From pgs. 1-2:

"Feng Shui is the study of the environment and how it affects people. ... [It] is not a belief system, a religion, superstition, or magic.  You don't need to 'believe' in it in order for it to work.  Feng shui has nothing to do with changing your luck and everything to do with helping you create a space that promotes feelings of happiness and well-being."

The author of this book examines both the inside and outside of homes in detail with lots of examples of good and bad feng shui.  Tabby read some of this book too and now we now look at our home - and others - quite differently.  If you hang out with us you might hear one of us say "Oh that's bad feng shui!"

Thinking about what I read has helped me make sense of why I have continuously felt rather overwhelmed and unsettled by a lot of my house.  (We moved here several years ago - when Solomon was only 3 weeks old.  He was a very clingy baby and I struggled with post partum depression after we got here so lets just say it was NOT an easy move.)  As I declutter (using the KonMari method - see The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo) in our home this summer I will be incorporating some feng shui principals in too.

I think many of us know that clutter/too much stuff can make us feel bad.  (I won't define "too much" - that's up to you.)  There are a number of reasons for this.  But one that I never thought of, until I finished this book, was that clutter blocks energy in the home.  (The Chinese call this energy "chi.")  We know that molecules and atoms surround us, vibrating at different frequencies, yet because we don't see them, it's hard to remember they are there.

In the 1600s, Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens noticed that "two pendulum clocks hung side by side would eventually synchronize and begin to swing in the same rhythm." (p. 263)  Isn't that so interesting?  I keep thinking about that and that reminds me of the energy surrounding us.  What happens when you have lots of clutter or just too much stuff?  That energy is blocked.  Not good.

If you practice feng shui, I'd love to hear about it!

"For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him." - Colossians 1:16


  1. I think its interesting. And if by clutter/too much stuff it means unpacked boxes and trash, I can agree. But if it means sentimental belongings, I simply cannot agree. :)

    1. Oh no - you need to keep your stuff that you love! I have little things here and there that aren't useful but I just love them and love looking at them. That stuff stays.
      I guess we just have way too much of the stuff we haven't used in years but "might possibly one day use it" lying around. It takes up room and we have only so much room! Now that's what I mean by clutter.

    2. Oh and toys. There's no point in keeping toys that only get played with a few times a year. The boys have way too many. You should see Tabby's room though - it's the neatest and cleanest in the house!

    3. I'm interested in reading it!

  2. to each his own, I really like my stuff but then you knew that already. mj

    1. Yes! I thought of you when I wrote this and hoped you wouldn't take it the wrong way or be offended at all. :) If you love your things and are happy being surrounded, then that is great! And just so you know - I love your house - there are so many interesting things to look at. I feel the same way about your shop. :)

  3. Interesting! I will have to look into this book...I read a live simply book and it inspired me but I seem to keep collecting to much stuff in to small of a space. I guess that will happen with 8 people in a very small house:) Still I would like to change! Thanks for the recommendation!

    1. It really is hard because we all seem to continue to bring stuff into the house at a faster rate than it goes out! Judging by your blog photos, you do a remarkable job with all your family in your small house. :)