drEAming, general chit chat, mEAndering, out and about, rEArranging, simplifying, trEAsure

“I read a book one day and my whole life was changed”…

― Orhan Pamuk, The New Life

Yesterday I had a visit to Leeds to have some blood tests done at Jimmy’s.  I only have to go once a year now to check I’m still OK and I always tag along with my husband who works in Leeds as I dislike driving in the morning rush hour along the M62 – not that you can call it driving it is more like queuing.

He drops me off in a convenient spot and I walk up through the city centre to the Headrow to catch the bus to the hospital.  It is always a constant source of amusement to me that I get on and off at exactly the same bus stops for both journeys yet it costs me £2 to go to the hospital yet only a £1 to come back.

The difference must be it is all downhill coming back!

On the way to the bus I might just happen to call in at one or two of my favourite shops such as Paperchase and Neal’s Yard, even though I tell myself I shouldn’t because there is absolutely nothing that I need and wants are definitely out out out this year.

On the way home  – even better – a visit to Waterstones  – 3 floors of heaven.  I tell myself it is just to get a hot chocolate and a toasted sandwich at the in-store Costa but really I know the truth – it is to browse the endless shelves – collect together a tidy pile of books and then find a soft squidgy arm-chair to sink into and read until I feel I have over stayed my welcome or fear I may be locked in.

My intention was just to browse through the pile – definitely not to buy.   But amongst the Craft shelves of all places I discovered an interesting book called Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying your Life by Bea Johnson and just by reading the preface I knew I wanted to read more of this book.  I am sure some of you will have it on your bookshelves already.  I am hoping it will produce the momentum I need to get going again on my Simplifying.

Then just by chance I also came across The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo and I pulled this one off the shelf as I was curious to know what it is about this book that other bloggers like Sue over at Our New Life in the Country and Freda at Live Simply, Simply Live  and a few others are raving about.

I have tried and tested many ideas from other organising books over the years and even though they have good advice something always seems missing for me and I thought this might just be another one, but when I read her introduction something sparked.  I could identify with her initial interest in all things tidy at a young age and her obsession with home-style magazines.  Rather than play with my toys I would line them up as if in assembly at school – this might be bricks, or dolls or those little Wade porcelain figures – everything had to be in order for me even by age six.

The tidying has never been a problem it happens naturally – but keeping it tidy  – that is my sticking point and most of this is due to our busy lives.  I also have a knack of leaving my own tidying to go and help a sick or busy friend or relative do theirs.  I leave their house tidy and go home to my mess!  She continued to talk about how to keep the tidiness and she was suggesting it isn’t to do with lack of time.   Aha I thought this sounds like I might be on to something and I am now curious to discover if the answer to my problem lies within these pages.

So I confess…both books came home with me.

I justified this purchase by telling myself that I had earned a treat after all the overtime I have been doing lately and that this could be the change my life needs.

So if you don’t hear from me for a while you will know this time it is because I have my head in a book…or two.


15 thoughts on ““I read a book one day and my whole life was changed”…”

  1. I have read Zero Waste Home and I do keep trying to reduce waste! Everyone is talking about the Kondo book; I have it on reserve at the library but it is so popular, it may be months until I get it (but I have plenty to read in the meanwhile).


  2. I love your journey to the hospital and back, calling in the same shops I would and justifying any purchases! Let us know if you find the secret of keeping tidy! X


  3. I do love books which ‘change my life’! (Not that i’m not happy with my life…..!) How funny about the bus fares, and I go into all these shops just to get a blast of colour – it does me good, especially in February. Enjoy your purchases Vivien.


  4. As someone who organized others for a living, I’m intrigued to hear about both titles. I must check them out as well. I’ll be interested to hear what you think when you’re done, and I applaud your decision to pass on your copy to another blogger when finished. Perhaps the book will travel around the world. You might sign the book when finished, then ask the blogger above to do the same and so on, a fun way to trace the book. You could even put your blog url on the inside cover.



  5. I read both books this year and, though I was lucky enough to get through the library, I think they were well worth your money. I’d say money well spent if it saves you in the long run.


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