Saturday, 27 August 2016

Maintenance and liberation

Starting anything is easy - looking after it, that is the tough part.

So today, i began doing what i said i would do - look after what i had cleaned.

Hoovering is no longer pushing the hoover around the empty bits of the floor. To really hoover you must lift everything off the floor, hoover under things and behind things, and hoover in corners with special attachments. You also need to hoover the ceilings. If you do this religiously every week, i have come to realise you will have a great house. It's very funny, because by the time i have been through the whole house, it looks like Venice just before the aqua alta. Everything is either on shelves or on table tops. I then go back down and put everything back again. I have found that putting everything down as you go just breaks the rhythm.

Moving everything also has an additional benefit. If you move things, they do not gather dust. I also hoovered behind the piano, and hoovered under the sofas and the beds, etc. Really, it is that simple, but very tiring.

I also mopped the kitchen floor and cleaned the bathroom.

And did the laundry.

AND how long did it all take?

About three hours.

This did not include dusting. Dusting i do on weekedays. I then changed my sheets, next week i change Oisin's sheets. But ask me, was it worth it? Every single goddammned minute. I have this now, where i use the cleaning time to meditate. And when i feel my impatience coming on, or frustrating, like why do *I* have to be doing this? i look at what i have in my hands. So, while i was changing my sheets, which was at the end of it all, for a sliver of a second, i thought, my god is every Saturday like this, i then looked down and saw the sheets I was changing. They were some sheets which i had since we lived in Donegal, in fact they were the sheets which i had used for my mom when she came to live with us for six months, in her caravan. I was instantly filled with gratitude. My mom, who lived with me for six months, and helped me becoming a mother. And then i gave thanks for the sheets - the Earth which made the cotton, the farmers who grew and harvested it, the designers who created the print, the textile craftsmen who wove and printed it. The people who sewed it and put on those tiny little studs, and then the people who sold it to me. It was a very long chain of labour and love, and here i am using it, have been using it now for almost 20 years. Surely that is something to be grateful for. Will i waste my time in swearing? I think not.

Ask me, how do i feel? I feel fucking marvellous! I mean i was completely exhausted by the time i finished, although not exhausted enough to bake my own bread according to a new recipe which didn't work, and also make homemade soup. It was delish. In fact it was so delish it is now ALL GONE. It came out of the detox book and really, it was something else. Then i had a hot shower, and washed everything out, and then went to bed at 1.30 and slept till 3 pm. I am so enjoying these afternoon siestas which i won't have soon.

How does it feel to have this clean house? It feels like one of the GREATEST accomplishments of my life. Really, i am not exaggerating. I have now learned to keep a clean house, i know what it takes. The kitchen is spotless and it is so organised. A measure of how organised it is has been demonstrated in how it has stayed the same now since the cleaning. Knowing what goes where and why is a really big part of this.

I am so so happy.

So everything is now ready for school to begin. I don't have this terrible heavy feeling... i met a friend yesterday and i said to him, you know, mice blah blah blah... and so clean the house, and he said, I'll be you feel liberated now - and that is exactly it - i feel utterly LIBERATED. I have a clean house.

I cam sleep happily in bed at night, feeling this intense feeling of virtue. It is unbelievable.

The house is by no means aseptic. It is still rough around the edges - rooms need repainting, as do skirting boards, but it is now so organised and clean. It is really something special.

I am now ready to begin the rest of the year.

So the detox is going really really well. It has been only one week and I have lost weight - probably about half a kilo. I can really feel it, first thing in the morning when I wake up. I feel light and amazing. I also haven't drunk for a week. Well i had one Guinness on Wednesday at the Dirty Onion with a friend, but that has been IT, and that has also been ridiculously great, not drinking at all. My iPad use has been cut down dramatically. I can't explain it. This detox means that i spend a lot of my time making food now, and shopping for food as well. But it is a pleasure, really looking after myself you know. And in the process looking after the family, because they too are eating the food and benefiting from the clean house and the great home cooked food.

Plus, i found out about the existence of angels. I have settled that debate for myself once and for all.

I have also enrolled in the watercolour class on Wednesday and am going to a study group once a month every Tuesday. Whatever else happens this year, it feels like it is being built on solid foundations.

So, tomorrow, I am going to try running again - it has been about a week and a half since i have torn my calf muscle and I will see how things turn out. If it is too much, i will walk it instead.

Everything is falling into place.

Growing old my style

I love being 45

I love my grey hair, i love the way i look
I have never been happier about how i look
And now, i am going to make my own furniture polish. Using beeswax and some linseed oil, with lavender oils. I will let you know how it goes.

Oh before i leave, here is the recipe for the soup:

1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Two large carrots, diced
2 courgettes, finely sliced
1 leek, trimmed and finely sliced
150 peas fresh or frozen
700 ml veg stock
3 tbs of tomato puree
1 bay leaf

Fry the onions and garlic in a splash of olive oil for five minutes.
Then fry the carrots, courgettes and the leek for five minutes.
Then put in the stock and the puree and bay leaf. Simmer for as long as you want. I did it for 40 minutes.
Then about 10 minutes before serving put in the peas and a handful of parsley.

Have it with lovely warm baguette. Make your own bread if you want.

It is so delish. Really supersweet and very filling. Each bowl gives you loads of everything which is good. Very filling too. Share or eat it all up by yourself. Easily done!

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