…a coffee shop journal…
Writing… I now realize just comes~ it cannot be planned, if it could I would have used the 50 or so theme titles with ideas of a story I wrote yesterday ~ I would be able to just wake up and write the title and tell the story and be done.
But here I am starring at the topics and my mind is wandering. I am sitting of course at the coffee shop. I have already made bread, eggs and coffee, turned the lights and music on, put the cash box in the register, wiped the tables down outside, filled the infused water jug and then…. a deep breath, a latte in hand and here I sit and wait for either my fingers to start typing or the first customer to arrive.
It’s the day after Christmas and I am sure the day will be busy with folks getting out and about. I think about how everyone spent yesterday. If face book is any preview to the American life there was lots of food, presents, drinks, laughter and families sharing time…. when did we become such an exposed culture? Then I think about the not so fortunate, the lonely, those that might have spent the night under a bridge, or in a shelter to get a meal. Now… now lets not get too depressing…happy thoughts…. happy dialog!
I will say this Rick and I did not exchange gifts with each other nor did we buy any gifts for others. This may seem a bit bah humbug but in reality it was the celebration of change, new dreams and freedom from stuff.
…. It was November 14th it had been a busy couple of months. October in these mountains is leaf looking, apple picking and festival attending mania. The coffee shop and our Glamping bed and breakfast were booked and we were..busy…..busy….busy.
Let me take you back a few months when Rick and I decided we could no longer build 2 businesses and do them justice, loving both our farm and In Towne we had to make a tough choice and let one of them go- the In towne coffee shop won. We decided to move downtown in a loft above our coffee shop and move Ricks photography studio into the space over our lounge. We toyed with the idea of turning the entire farm into a B&B. We were not in a hurry so we decided to take our time with the move. Meanwhile I was tinkering with our on line booking to see if we turned the entire farm into a B&B if our booking profile as it was set up would work. I went ahead and named the rooms in the farmhouse as well as the cottages on the property so we could play around with them on the web site. Well… you remember I said we were very busy- so busy that I often half read emails. One in particular might have required my attention and that was the one where our on line booking rep sent me the dummy link to the new B&B where the entire farm would be available with a final note saying if they did not hear from me they would go live in the next few days.
November 14th …
We got our first reservation for West Winds, which just happened to be Rick and my bedroom at the farm which we had not planned to move out of until after the first of the year. I think you get the picture.
The reservation made on the 14th was for an arrival on Thursday night the 19th– yes you read that right 5 days to not just move out of the farm but make the farm look like a B&B that had been there for at least 7 years (now that is my insanity I realize-I guess it’s the ‘things must be perfect syndrome!!!’) There was garbage bag after garbage bag of clothes (you know… the clothes you hold close to your chest and say over and over I love this dress or this shirt even if I have not worn it for 8 years it’s sooooo cute), dishes (how many sets of dishes do we really need ~well there is the set you got for your wedding, the set you got on sale years latter, the set you inherited from your parents and of course the set you also inherited from your significant others parents…seriously???) then the knick-knacks (you reminisce about when you got this or that~ you still have the wooden country cutout cat that has been outdated home décor for over 20 years and on and on it goes with the stuff , then there are the items you decided would be YOUR travel remembrance collector items like salt and pepper shakers, or assorted owls, spoons with the outline of each state you visited on it, what would souvenir shops have done without us? All of these items were loaded into the car and taken to various thrift stores around town…. trip after trip. At any given time I could not see out of the back window.
Rick was still trying to figure our what West Winds was since I had made it up for a demo I did not see the need to tell him I actually did an entire B&B presentation to our on line booking and the moving continued day after day until November 19th arrived.
Fast forward to Christmas. We now live in a beautiful loft downtown with a quarter of the stuff we had. Ricks studio is almost finished he managed to downsize as well. We moved from a 2500 sq. ft. house into 900 sq. ft. loft, we turned a few large spaces at the farm (laundry room, walk in closet and linen closet) into a micro closet in the loft complete with stackable washer and dryer, space for all our linens we need and all the clothes we decided were worth keeping!
The process that took place these weeks was both overwhelming, rejuvenating, confusing, and well lets just say we did it!!!
We managed to look at our life and decide what was important and being the care taker of so much stuff… that really was… just that ~stuff ~would no longer serve us for the new life we were about to embark on.
It was not that gift giving has no meaning for us, it is about the gift- we chose the gift of love, time spent drinking a coffee with a friend, dinners shared, hikes taken connecting with nature or a weekend getaway. For us it has become more about the experience …about being in the moment.
What does that really mean you ask? Being in the moment?
It means this~~life in its full spectrum is short- when we are very young we know no time there is so much of it we are truly carefree …then as the teen years approach we feel a bit anxious and can’t wait to get out on our own…. then we cannot wait to go to college … and then we cannot wait to get out of college…. then we cannot wait for our first real career or meeting someone special – then its all about money-we want the car, the trips, the house, the furniture, the dog, more stuff , the cat, and then children to fill the house- The clock is ticking- then comes the mid life crisis as they refer to it when we say…. We had no idea all this was going to cost us our life!!!! What on earth are we doing? The years seem to be flying by as 40-50 becomes a blur…. and then its gets a bit quieter- we hit 60 and begin to go back from whence we came back…back…. back… and alas here you are 65…70….75 and the feeling of your youth returns that carefree attitude – the recognizing that it was all just a crazy ride to end up right back where you started…. with one small difference …your entire life no longer lies in front of you…there are more years behind you than in front of you and suddenly …the moment …this moment …seems precious …..the clock stops ticking and time stands still ….there is nothing you cannot wait for because you recognize you have it all right here in this moment……..and it is then and only then that you understand what is meant by a life well lived….
about the author…JoAnn
I am an accomplished artist, designer and gardener with an admitted compulsion for natural intuitive healing and a spiritual connection with the earth. I am a lifelong serial entrepreneur, a creator of extraordinary ideas, and soon to be published author …..let the dreaming begin….