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I looked at her, beautiful, young, desireable, talented, educated and naive. And she asked me “So how do you know if he is the one?” She is 24, just graduated from college, dating a guy who is her same age and apparently cheated on her numerous times (around 50 if I remeber correctly) when they first started dating. He had settled down into their relationship since. She however had asked me several times in the past 8 months whether she should pursue other men’s advances or stay with her boyfriend.

I didn’t quite know what to say. I had not thought about that question for so long. I met him when I was 22 and we moved in together 3 and half months later. A whirlwind romance and an intensely passionate love affair. We experience great conflict due to our different outlooks on life, but overcame them and our relationship flourished from that point forward. We got married in a secret ceremony about 3 years ago and now I just could not imagine my life without him. He is the air I breathe, the water I drink, my life’s energy. So what made him the one and am I really qualified to be answering this young girl’s heavily laden question?

“You will know that he is the one when he makes your soul sing.”

Yes, that’s right. My husband made my soul sing. You see, most people when you meet them there is that initial getting to know you effort you need to put in. You might like someone but you will not have the immediate need to incorporate them into your every day life. The connection you have with people you meet every day varies from an instant dislike, to a tentative liking, to a mutual reacognition of similar interests to a vague attraction and some feelings of commonalities to that all encompassing, life changing encounter which simultaneously takes your breathe away and envigorates your entire being. From the moment I laid eyes on my husband my life was changed forever. I wanted to spend every single waking moment with him, in his presence, absorbing his essence. I physically ached when I was away from him, but felt more alive than I had ever before when I was with him. When we travelled, it did not matter where we were, as long as I was with him it felt like home. He felt like home to me. He made my soul sing.

She though about my answer for a moment then she asked, “So what does that feel like?”…

And all I wanted to say to her sweet, naive question was “If you have to ask THAT question, then he is not the one for you.”

BUT, I didn’t. I held my tongue and told her that it was hard to explain, but she would know it when she felt it. She married him a few months later and I wish them both all the luck in the world.

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Work in Progress

Lately I have been mentally re-committing myself to a simple life by focussing on the regular, everyday things that make up my daily life. Instead of overlooking them, the stability and regularity of this things have added comfort to me during a very uncertain time at work. By seeing the best in the simple things I am relieving the stress that would otherwise build up and create tension in my relationship with my husband. I instead am cherishing every moment we spend together no matter what we are doing. It is very life affirming.

God bless all,

Mary.

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Escapism

Recently my thoughts have been wondering to escapism. I have have a wonderful life right now as we have a nicer place to live than we have ever had together, better paying jobs and recently I received a promotion. However, I am over worked and insecure about myself physically, so I am trying to find ways to escape this life and am doing it quite sucessfully in my head. I have travelled to Asia and seen beautiful temples, landscapes and beaches. I have become a monk who lives a simiple life, wanting for nothing and only working to gain spiritual peace. I have been a farmer, living off of the land and working hard physically, rather than mentally. I am searching for the escapism that captures me and baout which I have no reservations. One day I may just up and leave and take on the role I imagine in my head.

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Staying Motivated

I used to have a blog on a high traffic website which guaranteed that I’d have at least a few viewers each day for my blog, however as that blog was found by someone who I knew and did not want to share my thoughts with, I decided to close it down and open up this blog. However, as this blog is not know and I do not advertise it, I recieve much fewer viewers. I noticed that this lack of viewership is de-motivating when it comes to writing new posts for my blog as I miss the interaction of knowing that people are reading my posts and provide me with feedback on my thoughts.

Also, as I have decided not to dedicate this blog to the same subject as the previous one, to ensure that it remains annoymous, I seem to have lost my muse. However, I am determined to find a new muse and incorporate all the new thoughts I have about simple living. So I have decided to find other ways to motivate myself to write more on this blog.

I am going to aim to post something at least twice a week, even if it is a short post.

Currently my whole life is revolving around focusing on more positive things and working towards being in a happy place no matter what else is going on. I have grown so much in the last year and one of the things I have learnt is that no matter what is going on around you, it is up to you as a person to either be happy or sad. It is a personal thing that cannot be forced by outside events or emotions.

Therefore each day I am striving to catch myself in different moments throughout the day and to remind myself that I am choosing to feel whatever it is I am feeling in that moment. Especially in moments when I am down or being overly negative, which I have an tendancy to be. If I can catch myself in those moments, I feel that eventually I will be able to catch myself before the moment starts and inevitably it will my nature not have those moments.

Be the change!

Love,
Mary.

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Reaching Goals

In the last 2 years I’ve been working towards some pretty big goals in my life: saving up money, getting a better job and moving countries. We’ve manged to save more than I ever dreamed we could, I got not just 1 but 2 better jobs and I am now within touching distance of immigrating to a new country for the second time in my life. Through working towards these goals I have learnt alot about myself and the process of achieving the things you really want in life. I have started to repeat some sayings that have really become true in my life and have helped me through the process of achieving my goals. I want to share them with you:

– God created one day after the other.
– Each day is a new opportunity to succeed.
– The best way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.

All these sayings remind me that when I want to achieve something big that I need to be patience and keep working towards my goal, because it is not possible to have it instantly. I will apply these new learnings to every goal that I have in my life from now on and learn to love not just the end results, but the process that brings me closer that my desire goal. It is about embrassing the process that helps you reach your goals, not just the desire.

It is not possible to win the race without first training to win the race.

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Over a month ago it dawned on me that I never seemed to find the time to do much in the evenings during the week and even the weekends would fly by with very little accomplished. My hubby and I would barely have time to just talk with each other and it felt like anytime we had to do anything other than buying groceries on the weekend, that it just ate up all of our free time and by the time Monday rolled around, we felt like we barely had a weekend.

I was feeling lethergic and frustrated as life was just going at a too fast pace for both of us. We both work fultime outside the house in order to earn enough money to survive and save a little towards our future goals. However, it seemed we had so little quality time to enjoy. This started weighing heavily upon my mind, were we meant to go through the next 30 years like this; both of us working just to have what seemed like a few minutes of quality time each weekend together, then back to work?

Well, I started really thinking about this issue and realised that this was not a problem for everyone and realised that there must be something I’m not doing as well as I could. That there was something in my life that ate up all the free time me and my hubby had and then I realised. We’re both computer people. He likes to play games and watch the baseball online while I tend to spend alot of time reading up about the topic “du jour” online. We were doing this every evening and most of the weekend. It was amazing just how much of our time were dedicating to the computer. Especially damaging considering we both work 40 hours a week behind a computer.

Once I realised what the problem was, I had to find a way to start fixing the problem, after all it is not very easy to stop a habit 2 people have fallen into over a 4 year period. After some thought I came up with a plan and after discussing the idea with my hubby, we both agreed it would be worth a try. The plan was simply to have one evening a week where we did not spend more than half an hour on the computer and instead spent the evening doing something together. The challenge would be to come up something we would want to do together each week.

It worked, but we were wrong about one thing. After our first date night, we ended up having 2 full ate weeks before we returned to the computers. It was sooo much fun because we had forgotten how much we enjoyed just being around each other and talking, we just didn’t want to stop.

It’s amazing how taking just a small step in a new direction can lead to a totally new life, as now we often spend time together doing things which makes us feel as thought we have much more time than before. We’ve learned how to cook some new, healthier recipes and we’ve baked some delicious delights, we’ve taken up geo-caching as a new hobby and we’ve found some common dreams and goals which we are now using our new found time to achieve. I wish you all luck in rediscovering the time God has giving us to make the most of!

Love,
Mary

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So last week I was sick 2 Thursday and Friday from work during quiet a critical time at work. To be honest I’ve been feeling quiet depressed lately and I beliveve my despression is making me feel sick. I wish it would go away as I’ve suffered from depression in the past ad I no longer want that to be part of my life. It is hard to fight once it sets in.

The reason I have been getting depressed is that I have decided that I really want to move to the US, but there are so many things which need to be done before I can even start thinking about moving. I started reading into the process at the end of last year and slowly started collecting the required paperwork. I’m much closer now than I was 5 months ago, but the toughest part has not yet arrived, so I keep knocking away at sending away paperwork and trying to handle it one step at a time. Like they say – the easier way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.

I guess something else contributing to my feeling that we have a stopwatch ticking down on this issue is that both my boyfriend’s and my employment contracts are coming up for renewal : his at the end of July and mine mid-way October. In this economy it is very hard to say if they’ll be renewed or not and I feel it’ll be the perfect opportunity for us to pack up and go. Even though we have not saved up nearly as much money as we dicussed we would and the paperwork will take several more months to process at least.

I’m feeling so unreasonably impatient on one hand and on the other I feel if we go earlier we’ll be putting some of our other dreams on hold longer. Like buying a hobby farm. Once we immigrate to the States, it’ll take us much longer to save up the money to have a decent deposit on a country house. I need to stop being so impatient and I need to stop worrying about EVERYTHING. After all that is the whole reason we’ve consciously decided to live a simpler life. So that we learn to enjoy the every day instead of killing ourselves working for an uncertain future.

Someone once told me a story I’ll never forget. This woman and her husband had 3 kids and they decided one day to save every penny they had so that one day they could afford to build a their dream house. This goal motivated them so much that they hardly ever brought anything extra for the family, they scrimped and saved so much that they cut out nearly all “wants” in their lives. They only spent money on “needs” and put all the remainder of their money into savings for their dream house. Then finally the day came around where they could afford to build their dream house and they did. When it was finished, they were so happy with it, theirs kids were over the moon. It was a dream come true. 1 week after it was comepleted and they had moved in, the house was burnt to the ground with all their possessions inside.

True story with so much meaning and is quite appropriate to heal my current mood. I will meditate upon the truth of this story.
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So our online “high interest” savings account interest rate is dropping again from 3.75% to 3.5% as of May 20th. This makes it much less attractive to save our money in that account compared to our normal savings accounts as the difference in interest percentage is less than one full percent. We’ll keep our savings there for now, but I might have to start looking around for a better interest rate if it drops any further.

It’s a pity that we could not place our cash in CDs. We’re so shakey at the moment with the economy and our plans to move that I don’t want to tie up our money for any length of time. We need it as accessible as possible.

I hope you all keep well during the next few days, especially my friends who are facing a company reorganisation announcement on Monday.

Love,
Mary.

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