Thursday, April 9, 2009

Feng Shui Part 1

Feng Shui is the art of design where placement of objects like furniture and decor, even walls opens/releases an individual's chi or energy. Whew! That was a mouth full. Being that all matter is made up of energy and that energy attracts and detracts, it makes sense to me that Feng Shui is not only real but it works. But beyond the common sense (or maybe not so common. Are normal people as ga-ga for Quantum Physics as I am? I'm a weirdo) I have experienced the "flow" of Feng Shui and have experienced the clutter without. I'm baring my soul here people! Buckle in!! :)

Mine and my husband's first house together was a ranch style home on an acre. Oh, it was nice... with a six car garage/workshop and an in-ground pool. There were stalls set up out back for livestock; by anyone's standards this house was NICE. Well, except mine. I don't mean to say that I didn't think the house was nice, more that it wasn't right for me. I just want to say that before I really get going, because the next part is going to sound like a huge list of complaints, but it really is not. I do have a point.

First, the house was located on a dirt road that was narrow and twisted and turned very oddly. If two vehicles were on the road, one vehicle had to pull over so that the other could pass. Due to the road being dirt (and this IS Arizona), it was impossible to keep the house clean. I pretty much had to dust daily, which I didn't, to keep the house looking presentable. Second, the ceilings throughout the house were 8 foot ceilings. For some people low ceilings are perfectly fine. For me.... well I'll get to that in just a sec. The living room was the first room you entered into when coming through the front door. Just the word "living" can pretty much tell you what everyone saw when they entered my home. And that, by the way, is also what I saw every time I entered my home. A room that was lived in. Newspapers on the floor, empty soda bottles, books in various stages of un-read and dust, lots of dust. The kitchen was located just behind the living room. A huge wall separated the living room and the kitchen. I had painted the kitchen and was proud of the job I did. I thought the colors accented the WHITE cabinets very well. A couple of things about the kitchen paint. Color plays a HUGE roll in Feng Shui. Color, like most everything else, affects energy. I picked bright colors because they seemed to fit the "country" style in the kitchen with the WHITE cabinets and the double french doors that led on to the extended patio. Bright colors are not MY colors, and I found that out the hard way. All the dust that came into the house from those wonderful doors turned the WHITE cabinets brown which terribly clashed with the bright colored walls. Had I known about the dust before I painted, I would have gone with a darker color to accent the cabinets that would (after 7 years) turn brown anyway... no matter how much you scrubbed them, but that would have hindered me from finding out that my personal color palette is an autumn and NOT spring. The hard lessons are always the best lessons.

As soon as you went through the french doors onto the back patio, your first view was the fencing that surrounded the pool and completely blocked the yard from the patio and ran most of the length of the extended patio's concrete. At the far end of the patio was another set of french doors that took you into the master bathroom. What was with all the doors?!? Now typically I would love doors, and natural light sources, etc. But in a house that is located on a dirt road, lots of doors is NOT a good thing unless your only joy in life is cleaning. On leaving the bedroom and entering the hall, I was greeted by MORE DOORS lining a narrow hallway that led back to the living room. Now, prior to converting the 2 car garage into living space and building the workshop/6 car garage, a garage door was located in the living room just before you entered the kitchen through a small archway. We eventually turned that garage door into another arch, added a wall for a small entrance onto what became a HUGE finished room. Since our laundry room was located in the garage, my husband added another wall and a door and we now had a laundry room that I mistakenly painted a bright color... again! But, the new converted room ended up being my saving grace. The openness of the room made me feel differently than the rest of the house. Could that be my chi? HAHAHAHA! I bought a can of paint labelled European White. I thought white would go with most of the other walls throughout the house since the only two rooms that were painted with an actual color were the kitchen and and now the laundry room. Well, as it turns out, the color European White is not white at all. It is a creamy beige with purple undertones (the color mix included red and blue with a black base). Now I know about paint colors, bases and mixing... at that time I didn't, let alone knowing ANYTHING about Feng Shui. I was a very young whipper-snapper back then! hahahaha. Now for the complaining. Over time, living in the house became very hard for me to feel comfortable in and learning about Feng Shui told me why. Clutter began to pile. It was as if I was finally resolved that I was not going to be able to keep the house clean and just wasn't going to bother trying. The lack of storage and organization made the air catch in my throat. This house blocked my chi from the low, coffin-like ceilings to the doors to the fencing as soon as you stepped into the back yard blocking the view of the entire acre of grass to THE NEVER ENDING DUST!!! This house was the furthest thing from zen for me. Then we moved!

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