Puppy party

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So many of you had strong, emotional responses to my original post about our Kiley girl. You sent kind words and so much love- we are so thankful.
We’ve been keeping an eye on our girl and while things aren’t perfect she has made it to her 12th birthday and is still pain free. Her spirits are high, we never see her without at least three toys, and her appetite is as big as ever.
Kiley’s birthday party was a smash hit! The pups enjoyed peanut butter ice cream and the cats had sustainably sourced tuna. Kiley is currently snoring at my feet on our bed.
We are so thankful for every moment with Kiley. Because life is slow and intentional we can drop everything and be with her and cater to her needs, which to me, is what life is all about. Caring for these beautiful pets that we were lucky enough to rescue.
No matter how long we get with our pets, it’s never long enough- we will take each and every moment we can get.
Give your little furry ones an extra squeeze from me.
Happy birthday Kiley girl, we’ll love you forever.
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx

Bloom

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(pssst. there’s a song that goes with this post, click here to listen as you read.)
I’ve received some very sweet requests to share the story of my engagement. This wasn’t something I was planning to do because the day was so special, and just for Chase and I, but I share so much of my life with you all- why not this too?
Also, selfishly, I don’t want to forget the details. I want to remember every moment, word and smile that passed between us on that day. What a beautiful platform to both share and remember.
On April 23rd, 2017 Chase asked if I wanted to go on hike to High Knob Fire Tower. This place was significant for a few reasons: it’s where we had our first date, where we talked and talked and decided we cared for one another and wanted to give this thing a try, and it’s right on the border of both Virginia and West Virginia our two states.
When Chase asked me to go I thought nothing of it. We always go hiking or camping or walking and I assumed this day would be no different. We packed our water bottles and our lunch, kissed the pups and headed out the door.

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Pause

p1p3p4p2Taking time out is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. No matter what you’re going through, take the time you need. Take intentional breaks when you can, whether your schedule allows for just 10 minutes or 10 days, take what you can to care for you.
Lately I’ve been feeling a bit uninspired. A bit tired, low- and that’s okay. Life will always have ebbs and flows, the important thing is that we slow down enough to recognize them. We have to slow down to hear what our bodies, minds and hearts need.
When I need to take a moment, a pause as I like to call them,  I naturally turn to my pets. During the week work and responsibilities don’t leave much time to just be with them, so when we can we plan a special outing.
Dogs already know what life is about. They know when to play and when to pause. Observe their happy hearts and wagging tails and remind yourself that everything will be okay.
Here are a few other self care ideas:
Self Care Sunday – Take time Sunday to prepare for the week ahead with a face mask, meal prep- whatever relaxes and refills you.
Spend Time with Animals – If you don’t have any of your own ask a friend to borrow their pet for a walk and play in the park, or volunteer at a Humane Society or SPCA!
Carve Out Nature Time– One of my favorite Youtubers Niomi Smart inspired this post with her video.  Take some time to get away to nature. Find a green space near you.
Take time, take care.
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx

 

Quickstart guide to decluttering

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“She did not need much. Wanted very little. A kind word, sincerity, fresh air, clean water, a garden, kisses, books to read, sheltering arms, a cozy bed and to love and be loved in return.” -Starra Neely Blade
Many readers reach out and ask me how to start decluttering. Whether you’re a new reader or you’re in need of a decluttering refresher this spring here is my “how to” quickstart guide to decluttering!
Organize your thoughts. I don’t know about you but I often have a running to do list going in my head and if I don’t stop to write it all down it can cause anxiety and overwhelm. Begin your decluttering process by creating a checklist of things you would like to accomplish or simply write down your intentions for the process. What is your ideal living space? How do you want your space to look and feel? When things get tough or tiring you will have your list to look back on and inspire you to keep going! (Add pictures and quotes too!)
Communicate. If you live with other people (roommates, partners, children, pets) communicate what you are doing. Let them know your plans and hopes for the space. Reassure them that you will not be decluttering their items, only your own. And yes, I do tell Kiley and Max and Ming and Tony and Meredith that I will be decluttering; pets are so smart and sensitive, they observe so much. Let them know you are not moving or leaving without them, just clearing some things out!
Set a time limit. If you have a full schedule set aside 20 minutes each day. For some, decluttering for too long can start to feel tedious and taxing. Others find it gives them more energy. Find a time limit that’s right for you! Set an end date as well- this can be part of your goal setting or thought organizing! Give a specific date you would like to be done by. Have your goal be lofty yet attainable.
Pile by category. Pull everything out- EVERYTHING. When gathering and piling while working with my decluttering clients I let them know that anything found after we go through a certain category will be immediately donated or recycled because it must not have been very important they often suddenly remember another box of clothing in the attic or some sweaters in the car! Gather by category, then sort. My category suggestions in order are: clothing, books, paper, and then the rest (kitchen, food, toys, and anything else you have.)
When sorting ask your self, do I need this item? Do I love this item? If not, remove it. Beware of just in case items.
If you’re having trouble deciding if you love or need an item, keep it out of sight. Store it in a bin or a bag where you can not see it. If you do not reach for it within the next 6 months or so you probably do not need or love it, let it go. Let it bring someone else joy.
Bonus step: Digital declutter. Take the time to go through your phone and computer for digital clutter. Clear out old photos, apps and more. Digital clutter can weigh on us just as much as physical clutter! For more detail on how to declutter your phone click here.
I hope you find this helpful. Best of luck, let me know how it goes!
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx