Visual Reminders

simple strategies to capture happiness

I’m half a minimalist.  I’m not sure if that is a real thing. For me it means considering carefully the ‘things’ I bring into my life, ensuring they fill a need and that I don’t simply accumulate stuff.

Where I split off from the lifestyle is in still wanting to have special sentimental objects around me.  I’m a visual person.  Against the backdrop of my simple, ordered home I want to see a pop of memories sitting on my sideboard or hanging on my walls.

I find joy in the vessels that host my recollections.

Small jars of gems and rocks gather together to tell me of the times my family and I searched the mountainside for elusive thunder eggs. I’m reminded of how determined we were, how much we enjoyed the dig and how we waited expectantly to find out if the spoils of our dig held thundering treasure.  We lugged our discoveries home, some to go into the garden bed or “elsewhere”, some to hold pride of place.

Having jars of gems prompting and supporting my reminiscing enriches for me the story of our fun and times of shared happiness.

Sometimes the joy of my sentimental objects is not in holding a single story or event but in hosting a sense of meaning. A round vase of shells, picked up from the same stretch of beach over more than a decade, represents my journey of reflection and growth. The calmness of walking the shore, unhurried and unbound.  The meditation of finding, and collecting each shell. This vessel holds beauty, inspires groundedness, and is a symbol of my unapologetic self-acceptance.

The calmness of walking the shore, unhurried and unbound.

These particular vessels of joy will always hold a place in my heart, but might get bumped from the display shelf at some point (remember the half minimalist thing?).  I need to leave room for creating new adventures and the memories that go with that, and for growth.

Having a selection of our sentimental objects around us can deepen our stories, and they can act as a talisman for sharing our stories with our family and friends. We can be reminded of our joy, and enrich our ability to revisit memory lane.

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