Preparations for Necessary New Year have been so incredibly exhausting. I knew the problem was bad, I’ll admit. But I’ll also readily admit that I had no idea just how bad it had gotten; who knew we had so much stuff?!
My Husband and I didn’t go through our things before we made the initial move… We just packed all our stuff up box by box and brought it with us. That, apparently, was our first mistake; when we moved in, there was a lot of stuff we simply didn’t have room or use for. We’ve been horrid about getting rid of it, and so stuff had continued to become more stuff as we’ve collected things over the almost three years we’ve lived here. As a result, the preparation phase has included getting rid of a lot of stuff.
And I mean a lot.
One of the rooms on the beginning list was the Shrine Room; situated in the back of the house, in a cramped add on the previous owner built, the Shrine Room is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: A room for my religious practice- including mountains upon mountains of Shrines. Unfortunately, the room has become storage on and off over the last few years and the majority of the time it’s just unusable. But even when it is usable, save for the Altar at which I give my offerings, I don’t find myself actually using it.
Simply put, Shrines aren’t important to my practice anymore. Getting rid of my Shrines and the majority of the items I used to use to decorate them, then, was easy enough for me to deal with. But once it happened, the room was barren. Empty and lonely. I didn’t want it to stay that way because I genuinely enjoyed spending time there when I was able, and so I got to brain storming!
Enter: Tea, of all things; the room, on top of acting like a Shrine Room, also stores all of my books and my Tea Cup collection. Anyone who knows me knows that I would be hard pressed to give those up- ever– and I wasn’t about to do so for Necessary New Year. They may not have a practical purpose, but they’re incredibly important to me; some cups in my collection are Antiques, others have an incredible sentimental value, and the fact of the matter is that I use them regularly.
But I live with a zoo full of clumsy animals with zero spatial awareness- nor a care in the world about what they knock over. As a result, I’ve always had to relegate them to the back room for storage. With most of the surface space taken up by Shrines, though, it meant that the vast majority of my collection couldn’t be displayed at the same time. With the Shrines gone, however, that was no longer a problem.
So I decided to turn what was once the Shrine Room into my Tea Room. And in a funny twist, almost immediately the Universe decided to drop all that I need for it in my lap- from beautiful glass Decanters, to the perfect pillows, an extra can of paint under my kitchen sink, and more. All in all, I managed to set the whole thing up in a single day- but it wasn’t easy.
First I needed to clear out all of the items in the room- and even with the Shrine items gone, there was still a lot left in there. Next, I had to paint; I had already painted one wall a while back, but I didn’t like not having the rest of it painted. The space still seemed to dark and far too cramped and I wanted a nice, breezy, frilly, stereotypically feminine room. After that, it was a simple task of moving everything back in and getting it set up.
I’ll admit that I damned near gave up at that point; I have this habit of thinking that everything I do looks cheap- and unfortunately I got the same feeling about the Tea Room about halfway into decorating it. I put my foot down, though, and powered through it; things went a lot smoother once I stopped overanalyzing item placements and just did what felt right.
Quite frankly, I love it. Even my Husband said that it felt far more peaceful in there- and I have to agree with him; it’s exactly what I wanted, and I’m so happy to finally have my whole collection safely on display. More than that, I could easily see myself sitting in there with my traditional cup of morning Tea every day.