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  • Writer's pictureJosie Coco

Weaving a connection to the past

Day 221/366 days Towards Self-Mastery.

Antiquing is an art to be perfected. I'm getting as much practice as I possibly can. In fact this Wednesday I have a whole day set aside to practice this particular performing art with a very good friend.

We plan to spend the morning riding in a steam train travelling through some local history, brunching at a beautifully restored railway station up country a little way, then returning early afternoon.

We'll follow that with lunch prepared in a stunningly simple space that was once a storage warehouse, served at tables of sawn timber and surrounded with paraphernalia from the passed.

The afternoon will be a divine few hours rummaging through antique stores, vintage wares and second-hand outlets just for fun and to continue our trip down memory lane.

Sarah alludes to the gift of bringing the wares of the passed into a nostalgic honouring in the present. We forget that they were once the practical machinery of a workable life, and look upon them with renewed interest.

For me vintage and period antiques stir memories as I fondly seek a way to incorporate them into my daily living. Oh if money and space were no object...

This time I will go with the intent simply to explore, and allow my heart to be enlivened by what I find.

With a few decades of age behind me and a houseful of vintage and period furniture that I love, I'm enjoying the connection to them that the passage of time brings. They seem in some way to be come more precious as they hold the memories of years gone by.

There's a hankering to chalk paint and stencil some of them, jazz them up a bit. That takes some considerable contemplation. The inspiration and the courage need to arrive at the same time. That has happened only on very few occasions. In spite of that I continue to love them.

A most memorable project was shuffling through a pile of old photos of my Polish ancestors. Arranging them into family groups, discovering birthdates, their history and connections, arranging them on suitably themed scrapbook pages and adding family stories brought alive in a connection to a country and family that seemed long forgotten.

Crafting works of art from primary Polish readers dated 1935, and creating an altered book journal with Polish tips and advice for living and fun in which to record advice I would like to pass on to my family.

Today my ancestors live on glorious closeness to me. Me, the living hope of their wishes, their desires and their dreams. It is with great delight that I look forward to the day that I may share these precious memories with my siblings.

Filling my cup with the simple and joyful art of antiquing, restoring yesteryear and crafting pieces of art from family relics. Yes, living simply for very little expense, on my path to self-mastery.


Simple Abundance

366 days Towards Self-Mastery

When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)

I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.

As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.

My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?

I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.

Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.

This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.


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