papers: create home thru konmari

For our first-ever Enjoy Life Project, we are working on Creating Home. The first step is to purge my home of the unnecessary, anything that isn’t useful, beautiful, or loved. I am using the KonMari method, developed by Marie Kondo, a Japanese decluttering guru and author of two book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up {LM} and Spark Joy {SJ}.  So far, I’ve introduced the project, discussed my criteria and completed my clothes (part I and part II) and books.

Graphic. konmari paper

 Things that are pending weigh on the mind for more than you might think.

The past few months on the blog, I have consistently mentioned guilt.  Initially when I set out to create home for me and my family, I did not think that guilt had anything to do with this situation.  Turns out it was a HUGE part of this situation. This became very evident as I was preparing to tidy my clothes and I realized that my closet and my papers both hold a lot of items that are unresolved.  With clothes, it was the items that I could no longer wear. Or those that I had bought them with the idea that I would one day fit into them. You get my drift. Paper was another area where the guilt was SCREAMING at me. So many papers and resources that I no longer needed. I wrote about the journey in real-time and here is the transcript.

Tuesday, March 5 at 8 AM – I’m waiting on the Buddy Man to wake up and I have moved all the papers out of the literal and proverbial closet and unto the floor.  Here’s my view!

What a mess! I’m sitting on a trunk and I am SO OVERWHELMED! Nervous apprehension is an understatement. I have a headache!!!!!!  I guess there’s nothing to do but jump in and get it done.  Referencing my end goal now.

At 11:15 AM – The Buddy isn’t feeling well. So, I have laid him down to rest.  Back at it.

At 12:30 PM – Something has clicked.  I am SO SICK of sorting paper.  So, if it doesn’t spark joy or if I don’t need it for legal purposes, it is gone! Including notepads from conferences that I attended – into the recycling they go.

At 3:17 PM – Taking care of Buddy Man. Spot tidying in-between checking him out.

Thursday, March 6 at 6 PM – I just finished going through the first past-through of paper, minus my journals and sentimental items.  I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders that I have been carrying around for at least 8 years.  It was cathartic, there were tears at several points.

But looking at that first pass-through of reducing my papers to things that spark joy or at least are useful and needed makes me know I am able to do the hard thing dealing with emotions that I have been staring at me for 12 years or more. In fact, I found a To-do List dated 2011 with the first item being: Clean out papers.  The irony!

I had notebooks from a company that I tried to start.  Mementos from my years of employment that reminded me of the good times and how poorly I appreciate them when I had them.  I also had papers that reminded me of the bad times, seemingly breaking open old wounds, causing me to relive the pain and the disappointment.

In addition, I had seven, SEVEN, notebooks of style and fitness tips that I had torn from magazines and the web.  It was basically Pinterest before there was Pinterest. Most of these ideas I had enthusiastically began but never fully implemented.

Many times, I wanted to quit and dive into a pint of ice cream but I remember what Marie said. Things will get difficult. Just keep sorting. I did and it worked.

Papers. AfterThursday, March 14 at 9:15 AM – As I made the second pass-through of my papers, specifically my style notebooks, I realized the HOURS that I spent planning to live my life rather an actually living it. Gut punch.

Here’s what I have left to keep.

 Wednesday, March 20 @ 1:30 AM – Marie says that by tidying, I’m honing my intuition and ability to act.  That’s why when I was sick and couldn’t sleep, I decided to continue KonMari(ng) my Komono, namely my journals that I had planned to save to Sentimenal.  I think I now know what I need to keep and what I should discard so I gave it a go.

I had six planners which I kept for referencing dates and activities that I have been involved in.

I have a total of 28 journals that have been written in – only 5 of which were completely filled.  They stay, obviously. Fourteen of the of the remaining 23 haven’t even been written in at all. Shame! I gave away 6 of those because they didn’t spark joy. Eleven were emptied of relevant pages that I need to keep for reference and then headed for recycling.  The rest were kept.

Surprisingly it didn’t take me that long.  I finished within the hour.

I can definitely say that my skills of what I want to have in my life currently and what I want to take with me have become clearer during this process.  I think I will breeze through Komono.

I will be back next week with my tips and tricks for tidying my papers.  See you then.

enjoy life…

quick lit – next page, please {march 2019}


During these monthly posts, I like to look at what I am currently reading, have read, and have abandoned because it just wasn’t for me.

Currently Reading

  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I have stayed up half the night three nights in a row to read “just one more page”.
  • The Next Right Thing: A Simple, Soulful Practice for Making Life Decisions by Emily P. Freeman and This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide by Geneen Roth. I loved The Next Right Thing and wrote a full review here. Like I said in that review, this book and Messy Magnificent Life are meant to be read again and again.  And I’m doing just that.
  • The Life-Changing Habit of Tidying Up and Spark Joy by Marie Kondo. Due to two trips out of town, my tidying has been delayed. I still hope to finish by the end of May. I’m rereading these two according to the categories I’m dealing with at the time. Komono is next.


  • Where We Belong by Emily Giffin. Finished reading this one for our Rocket City Mom Virtual Book Club. My full review will be up on their site shortly. I will say this, if you’re curious about what could possibly happen when an adoptive teen finds her birth mom, you might like this one.
  • Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia McLachlan. I read this one because I am helping my sister with my nephew’s English (go figure, LOL). He had to write a report on the book and I had never read it before. Very nice. Very sweet.
  • The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance – What Women Should Know by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman. This one was full of research and facts about some of the difference between men and women and how women sometimes sabotage their own confidence. It wasn’t necessarily as story-driven as Quiet (thanks for the language, Modern Mrs. Darcy) but a good informative read. I learned a lot about improving my own confidence.
  • The Confidence Code for Girls: Taking Risks, Messing Up, and Becoming Your Amazingly Imperfect, Totally Powerful Self by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman. I had to pick this up to see how different it was for the one for women. It wasn’t full of as much research and was full of scenarios for your preteen or teen to work through. I think it would be a good read for any girl with an older family member or a mentor.
  • Draft No. 4: On the Writing Process by John McPhee. I was happy to finally finish this one and fulfil my commitment to read at least one book on writing craft per quarter. I had been struggling.
  • The Next Right Thing: A Simple, Soulful Practice for Making Life Decisions by Emily P. Freeman. Read it. That’s all I’m going to say.

On Hold/Abandoned Reading

  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. Felt like a slog. I had to let it go.

What have you been reading?

enjoy life…

Per usual, I am linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy. I am amazed by that community. You should check it out.

friday’s secret: move, with fear

I am intimately familiar with fear. We have been at odds for years and it wasn’t until I read The FireStarter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte that I began to develope a different relationship with fear.

Fear, like love, joy, etc., is one of our many emotions that lets us know important things about the world around us. Fear is what prompts us to be cautious, warning us of impending danger.

In Fire Starter, Danielle discusses our traveling down the road of life in our car with our many emotions as fellow passengers on the journey. She stated that while we should acknowledge fear’s misgivings, address any rational concerns that it brings to the table, we should never ever let it drive the car or control the sound system.

Unfortunately, I have let fear drive for a very long time. But around 2012, I started trying to do things that scared me. And in 2016, I applied to be a guest on Modern Mrs. Darcy’s podcast, What Should I Read Next. My main fear being what would happen if I got accepted? But I figured that my chances were slim-to-none so the victory, for me, was pressing the submit button on the application.

Anne, who I have rhapsodized about extensively on this blog, including in an entire post, Re:Modern Mrs. Darcy, is the guru of my reading life, especially when it pertains to fiction. Her book, I’d Rather Be Reading, spawned a month-long series of posts entitled This Bookman: Meditations and Miscellany.

Last month, I received an email from Brenna, one of the producer’s of the podcast, asking me if I still wanted to be a guest. I cried because I was so happy. And then I cried because I was so afraid. What if I sound like an idiot? What if I am unable to articulate myself properly? What if you disagree, or worse misunderstand, what I am trying to say?

But I emailed back and with fear, said “yes, I would be honored to be on the show.” From there, everything moved fast. Because of my apprehension, (what fear was trying to tell/warn me about), I took a look at my books and examined why I liked the ones I did. Brenna was awesome and we did a technical call where she explained everything that was going to happen, even reviewing my books, giving me a chance to discuss them, kind of like a practice run. That set some of my jitters aside. Within two weeks we recorded the episode and it is now live. I’d be honored if you care to give it a listen.

This experience was one of the literary highlights of my life and I had so much fun discussing books with Anne. I am so glad that I moved forward, with fear.

What do you need to do, with fear?

And I do realize, it’s Tuesday, but I could not wait til Friday to share! And if you know anyone who wants to discuss books, let me know. I am available. LOL.

Also, here’s a link to the Rocket City Mom Virtual Book Club referenced in the episode. Join us.

enjoy life…