I just finished reading "Paris Letters" by Janice McLeod. She basically lived my dream - downsized her life while saving a good chunk of cash to a point where she could pack it all up and travel for a year. Eventually she landed in Paris, found love, found an way to use her art to pay the bills (and not anywhere in Pigelle) got married and keeps exploring Paris as it unfolds the many layers that as a tourist you may never see.
This hidden Paris that Janice writes about is the Paris with which I fell in love over 7 years ago. Tagging along with LB on a last minute business trip, I was able to walk the streets slowly ( this should be your first indication that it is a magical city to me - I did things slowly!), savoring every single thing about the city. Did it strike a cord because it was my first taste of the Continent that I had only dreamed of visiting? Or was it the geraniums that graced every window sill, adding just the right hint of color to the spring? Or the fact that I had a full week with no obligations, global data plan or anyway to access my work emails. All of the above I am sure. The moment I returned back to Chicago, I vowed that I would make Paris my home. Not Paris, Texas - but Paris, France.
So this book - loved it. Needed it. Made things seem a little more obtainable. There were several good things that I I took from the book. One was writing all my thoughts down daily and the second was a way to start minimizing my clutter. Of course, being me, once I decided that I was going to declutter I started to fiendishly plot which area of my house would I start sorting first. The bedroom? the second bedroom? bathroom 1 or 2? the pantry? storage unit? OM MY GOD I NEED TO DO IT ALL AT ONCE RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW.
After taking a deep breath or two, I decided to start with the first thing I see when I walk through my front door - my bakers rack that holds a whole lot of stuff. Grabbing my trusty chicken timer, I twisted it to 30 minutes and started sorting books. Books I've read, books I need to read, books I will never read and books that belong to others that I keep meaning to return. As I progressed, a few dust bunnies joined my sorting - but hey, that just made me feel like a modern Disney Princess. Snow White and CInderella get animals that help her clean - I just get "animals" as a result of my lack of cleaning. #realitydisney
When the timer went off, I walked away and sat down to write this blog.