Beauty As The Mother Of Courage

Miss RumphiusOne of my daughter’s favorite books as a child — and one of my favorites to read to her — was Barbara Cooney’s Miss Rumphius. 

While declaring her youthful intentions to see the exotic wonders of the world, a single-minded little girl is advised by her wise grandfather that in addition to accomplishing her goals she must do something “to make the world more beautiful.”

What a lovely Libran sentiment: making the world more beautiful! If someone told you that you must make the world more beautiful today, how would you react … Joyfully? With sheer panic? At a loss for where to begin?

Creating beauty doesn’t require an artistic temperament … Alice Rumphius planted lupines. We each have not only a unique way of creating beauty, but a human compulsion to do so!  A post from Ida Lawrence earlier this spring discusses the notion eloquently:

“A few days ago I tuned in to listen to an interview with trends forecaster Gerald Celente.  The conversation momentarily turned toward the beautiful environment Gerald has created within his office. He quoted a friend, saying, “Beauty is the antidote to fear.” Of course anyone who is mapping economic and social trends in today’s world is going to need courage. He created the office environment intentionally, both because he loves beauty, and because it is transformative – it changes energy, taking us from mind to heart.

The first question for us to consider is, how do we seek out beauty? We seek out beauty however we must! …..

the next question is, what does beauty do for us? It changes our thoughts, and our thoughts change our energy. I’m sure you’ve noticed that certain tones of voice, certain images and certain sounds can put you into a state of fear, anxiety, self pity, aggression and so forth while others can give you comfort, trust in the human heart, a reconnection with spirit, and a subtle energy shift  …

How do we create beauty for ourselves and others? First of all, we don’t have to be fine artists to create beauty. I know She's NEATyou feel the difference when you enter an orderly space, as opposed to a disorderly or cluttered space. You know immediately that someone, some other human being, took the time and used their energy to create order, to place things carefully here and there, to refresh and renew, and that is beautiful . ..

… The dedication of the artist is to their own inner spirit and its connection to the life force: it is an outstanding devotion. We cannot deny that the time we are living in is tumultuous. It requires that we pull something forth from within us, and that we all become the artist, devoted to the renewal of life. Now keep your heart up, and let’s carry on!”

The notion of beauty as the mother of courage is a compelling concept for our times. Alice Rumphius lived in a simpler world yet her grandfather knew the wisdom of it then.  With all the chaos, both natural and man-made, that surrounds us, the need for beauty is greater than ever.

See if you can take some time during this long holiday weekend to create something beautiful. Notice how the change makes you feel calm …  relaxed … more at peace. See if you don’t enjoy your day just a bit more because you have made the world a little more beautiful.

 

 

Jeanne Fiorini TarotWorks http://www.tarotworks.com

Being that she’s a quadruple Libran, beauty is an essential nutrient in Jeanne’s daily diet.
If you’d like  assistance creating order in your environment, or need some help refreshing and renewing the physical spaces in your life, She’s NEAT would be happy to help you scatter those seeds of peace and clarity. http://www.shesneat.com

ALSO:: She’s NEAT has a special 20% off for school teachers who could use help deconstructing their classrooms in the next few weeks. A great gift of appreciation for a teacher in your life…FMI visit http:shesneat.com 

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10 Tips For A Successful Yard Sale

musical notesIt’s the most wonderful time of the year ... Yard Sale Season!

If you’ve been following this blog for any time at all, you know that between the months of March and November of 2012 my weekly yard sale adventures were chronicled herein as the “Yard Sale Documentation Project.”

That was 33 weeks of very early mornings, many amazing bargains, a few price delusions, some tepid lemonade, and a lot of laughter. There will likely be the occasional blog installment when an amazing deal is scored this season, but a regular accounting during the 2013 season is not to be.

HOWEVER, I’m going to pass along some time-tested tips so that if you are inclined to embark on hosting a sale of your own, you will have some prime information to get you started.

Yes, one friend did say he’d rather have birds peck out his eyeballs than host a yard sale. And sorry to say, I’m not going to come over and help you clean out … unless you hire me as She’s NEAT, then I’m all yours!

Nonetheless, having a sale is a great way to clean out your house, get rid of some “old baggage,” and bring in a little tax-free cash in the Yard Sale Documentation Projectprocess.

Here you go — 10 Tips For A Successful Yard Sale

1. Plan ahead. Give yourself several weeks to clean out, gather your items and other material you’ll need (such as display tables and signage), and then organize and price your goods. Yes, things should be priced. Customers get nervous when it comes to asking about prices; let customers know the ballpark they’re playing in and then get ready to haggle.

2. Watch the weather report. Catch the 10-day forecast for your area and wait for the best weather on any given Saturday.  Saturday is still the preferred day for die-hard yard salers … and the earlier start in the day the better! A 7:00am start time is not unheard of.

3.  Be aware of other events going on that day. Is your home right down the street from an annual open-air art festival, church fair, parade, or other community event? If so, that’s a great day for a sale….. customers are already in your neighborhood! On the other hand, if you know that everyone heads out of town on July 4th weekend  … you should too.

Yard Sale Documentation Project 4. Advertise – Use the newspaper, and Craig’s list too, which has become an important resource for any yard sale event. Yard Sale pros check these listings out in the days prior to any given weekend. Also, don’t forget to work your own contacts: your email lists of friends and family, your social networks, and don’t be afraid to use work/school/local business bulletin boards.

5. Good signage on the day of the sale is a MUST. Even if people have seen your ad on Craig’s list or the newspaper, they can’t buy your stuff if they can’t find you. Put your signs up the night before if possible, and remember to get that permit from the city if your town requires it.  Large bright signs complete with arrows and street address will steer even those customers who had no intention of stopping by your sale right into your driveway.

6. Enlist your neighbors. Nothing says “STOP HERE” like a neighborhood full of yard sales. Even if you can rally a couple of dsc00256homes in your area to host sales on the same day, everyone will fare much better than going solo.

7. Be on time and ready to go. If your sale is scheduled to begin at 8:00, be ready by 7:45. Don’t get caught pulling stuff out of the basement while your sale is supposed to be happening. Nothing deters potential buyers from purchasing Grannies afghan quicker than having it sitting up on the deck under a pile of newspapers.

8. Suggest uses for some items at your sale. Sometimes customers just need a reason to buy something! For instance, place a sign on a used TV– “perfect for kitchen or student room” … or alongside a camera: “Give this to gramma for her weekend visits” … “Once-worn prom dress: Great for kid’s dress up.”

9. Price your items reasonably. Price items at what people will likely pay for them, not for what you think they’re worth. “Yard Sale dollars” are a different currency than “US dollars.” I like to work on the 10% rule: If something is $50 new, I’ll spend around $5 for it at a yard sale. Also, don’t sell anything you really don’t want to sell; nobody will feel good about that transaction. Those are “emotional dollars” and that’s slippery business.

10. Create a happy atmosphere and have fun! People will be glad to spend their money when they feel good about where they are. Light music, some cookies, a box of free give-aways … these things make customers feel welcome and more willing to like you and your stuff!

Jeanne Fiorini TarotWorks http://www.tarotworks.com

Jeanne Fiorini will not require a 10% cut of your yard sale proceeds for helping you have the best yard sale ever!  But you can visit the TarotWorks website and/or the She’s NEAT site, that’d be fine.

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