Posted by Laurel / 9:05 AM /
Be like the flower, turn your faces to the sun.
- Kahlil Gibran
A perfect, sunny morning to you! I have these pictures on my blog today, not because they are pictures of my home, but because they are pictures of homes with many windows. How many windows do you have in your home? Do you keep them open or closed, with drapes open or drawn? You would be surprised how many people live in nice homes and NEVER open their windows, blinds or curtains! Even if a home is not in the most beautiful, perfectly tidy condition, it will look better in sun than in a fog. Closed-up homes bother me, both living in one, or visiting. It makes me wonder what people are hiding from. I don't know much about Feng Shui, but that must be a #1 rule: let the sun and air in, for heavens sake! Its like walking around with eyes closed all the time - you never know what might be missed, and besides, you'll bump into things. The air gets close, thick and fetid, like bad breath. It is said that there is more air pollution inside of the average American home, than in the air outdoors. Our homes need an airing from all the fumes produced by cleaning chemicals, aerosols, fragrances and cooking odors. Spring seems like a great time to open up while the earth is going green.
If the eyes are the window to the soul then the windows are the soul of a home! My family was lucky enough a few years ago to move into our own home. My first rule of thumb was that there be lots of windows. Yesterday, I counted them. I know, obviously too much time on my hands. We have 35 windows and that is counting the frames around the glass, not how many glass panels there are. One skylight and then one window to the sky; this is called a "cloistery" window. Presumably it was the kind of window used in cloisters or convents, designed so that light and sun could get in, but people could not look in, or nuns disturb their reveries by looking out upon the world. We have some pine trees too, but our home is not hidden in a forest, which we had considered, but the darkness would have prayed on my psyche. It's just depressing not to have enough light, both physiologically and psychologically. Think of all the depressed people out there who are heavily medicated. They might even be my neighbors, who live in nice homes, but always have their drapes drawn or at half mast. It's not very friendly.
Of course it is a bit of work to open up curtains each morning, as they just have to be shut again at night, a chore like making a bed. But night is the only time when windows really need to be covered. The pictures of undraped windows (above) would only be possible during the daylight hours and, at night, only if the homes are isolated and very private. Open curtains at night must also be bad Feng Shui, as the darkness, once again, is so depressing, unless of course there is a sparkling few of city lights in the distance.
While on the subject of light, it is much nicer to have accent lamps around a room, than just one overhead lightbulb shining down, don't you think? Those overheads make noses look so big! Oh, and don't get me started on fluorescent lighting - they "suck out all the juice from your eyeballs" as Joe said in the movie, Joe versus the Volcano. I believe it, for that is the next thing I did after moving into our home (though it took me a few years to save for it.) We replaced the nasty fluorescents in our kitchen. They made the food, and people, look green and unwholesome. Now there are spotlights shining down on food and chef - so much nicer - though they are more expensive and I am eating and cooking more - which arguably is not a good thing.
If you read my post yesterday about the eating habits of my 101 old grandmother, there was an important element to her habits that I overlooked: every morning as soon as she awakened, at least by 7:00 am, grandmother would go through her apartment and open all the draperies. The windows too, if it was warm enough. This can take a bit of muscle but it can become a morning calisthenic!
Do you fight with your mate, as I do, about sleeping with bedroom windows open or closed? Mine likes to be warm and cozy at night, i.e. windows tightly sealed. I like to have more air, and will actually enjoy hearing a dog, coyote, fox or even owl punctuate my slumbers. There is too much to miss if everything is shut up.
I think it is amusing that people will go to great pains to "get out in nature" by going camping each summer, while living most of their days behind closed windows and curtains. Another thing my grandmother always did, without fail, was, make her bed. That used to be the rule rather than the exception in the olden days, or at least with grandmother's crowd. She was adamant about doing so. If my bed was not made I was "slovenly". It seems like the only people who make their beds now are, folks who were in the military or went to boarding school, or grandmothers! Am I showing my age? Honestly, I try to make mine, but have not mastered the daily habit yet. But really, it only takes a few minutes, and I've noticed that having a freshly made bed to greet one enables one to relax and breath deeply at the end of the day. It looks better too. Your mate will appreciate it, too.
Well, I hope you get some light and fresh air today. I'm going to make my bed and open a few more windows now. Next on my "to do list" is getting all 35 windows washed, inside and out. They really need it, and no more procrastination! I'm going to do the interior windows and hire someone for the exterior.
One final thought about these holes in our houses. Did you ever think what an interesting word "WINDOW" is? I mean it's wind with an ow after it. I thought it might be French, like perhaps originally, windeaux, but no, it is an Anglosaxon word, direct and to the point, nothing romantic about it. It says what it means: an ow to let the wind (sun and light)through. Everyone needs some of those to be fully alive!
at 9:05 AM | Labels: housekeeping