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Stayin’ Alive: Timely Feng Shui at Home

<em>An Excerpt from Carole’s recent book “Conversations with Your Home”</em>

<strong></strong><img src=”http://www.virtuallyspeakingva.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/Caroletable.jpg” alt=”” width=”218″ height=”269″ />Just as with any organization/structure that holds life, there has to be some system in place that assures your home will maintain its vitality.  Certainly general upkeep and care counts for something and should not be minimized, but in addition there should be a level of care that extends past the basics of keeping the floors swept and the windows clean.  You might call this nurturing the grace of the home—-those actions that not only keep the place alive but also instill a sense of uniqueness and of beauty.  However, it’s not just a decorative approach that is important for vitality, but also a connection with the changes of nature.  A home’s life should be coupled with appropriate timing, so that the grace or vitality is not just a design element but a timely design element.  Just like some people wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or put on costumes at Halloween, your house can also take on this visual market of temporal change.

Holiday decorations are a perfect example of including the home in this temporal dimension.  One client has her summer furniture arrangement and her winter furniture arrangement.  Another client collected twelve wreaths and on the first of each month placed a new wreath on her front door—-she need only look at her front door to be reminded what month it is.  I’ve had another client who accomplished a similar idea using four wreaths, changing them for each season.

A well-traveled couple I worked with did an “artwork exchange” each solstice and equinox when they would change the painting over their fireplace.  The idea of a summer bedroom and a winter bed room is not a new one.  We change our wardrobe depending on the season.  Why wouldn’t you “outfit” your home to reflect what season it is or what month?  Your home has an internal clock keeping itself and you in step with nature.

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Memories from a Childhood Home

Excerpt from Conversations with your Home . . .

Recently my sister and I had the opportunity to visit a house I lived in from age 1 to 9.  During some of my visits back to my hometown, I had driven by the house but never knew who lived there.  I saw how they had changed the front porch and had built a two-car garage.  They painted it yellow and added shutters.  It seemed like they were taking good care of it and that was all that mattered.

One day my sister coincidentally realized that the woman she had met at a social event was the owner of that house.  The woman graciously welcomed us to tour it whenever we wanted, so on my next visit we called her.  I figured we’d walk through, recognize some features, see what changes they had made, and leave.  I hadn’t expected we’d be there over an hour while the house unlocked a cascade of long-forgotten memories from my childhood.

From the minute we walked in, I remembered things I hadn’t thought about for years or hadn’t thought about since I’d lived there.  I remembered immediately where we had the piano andwhere we put our first TV set.  I remembered my little red chair that was always on the porch where I would play ( where IS that chair?).  I remembered our rose-colored couch and matching chairs that we gave away when we moved into our new home years later.

When we walked into what was once my bedroom, I turned to my sister and reminded her of all the times she’d make up bedtime stories for me.  I remembered the metal lamp that was clamped onto the headboard.  I remembered a circular flower bed filled with petunias that my dad had planted in the backyard, outlined in white stones.

I remembered being confined to my bedroom with measles and the balloons my dad brought me.  Even features that had changed didn’t stop me from telling the current owners how it used to be.  The back door was in a different place than it was now but I was able to point out to them where it was when I lived there, and even found a small indication on the wall that it had indeed existed in that spot.  “There used to be a cupboard right here where my mom kept the Oreo cookies.”

When we got in the car my sister looked at me with some concern as though perhaps I had gotten a little carried away.  Living in the house was a different experience for her than is was for me.  Sincere there are nearly 14 years between us, she only lived there a few years before moving out.  The house had indeed come alive for me, making my memories come alive as well.  It wasn’t that the memories were painful, it was just that there were so many of them.  Where had they been all this time?  Stored in the walls, waiting for someone to recognize and validate their existence, I presume.  On my own, I would never have been able to pull up those past moments.  But with the help of some subtle murmurs, I was able to recall a fountain of childhood patterns.  I have no doubt the house enjoyed the afternoon as much as I did.

Conversations Blog – Let’s talk about it!

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Have you ever walked into a home and had an immediate overwhelming feeling hit you?


Whether the feeling is positive or negative, the building is telling you something.  My new book “Conversations with your home” will help you identify aspects of your home that have up to now been unidentified.

Everyone has had “home experiences”.  Whether it’s your home or your neighbors.  The purpose of this Conversations blog is to share our experiences and hopefully learn more about them.

My new book, “Conversations with your home – Guidance and inspiration beyond Feng Shui” will help you understand your home by identifying an archetype that your space may be expressing.

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