My best friend bought me a tee shirt with "Stay at Home Gypsy" printed across the front and I've since worn holes in it from constant wear.
Home has always been one of my most important values. Dog paws on hardwood floors, fresh flowers in every available vase, the smell of coffee brewing and sunlight dancing in through the windows. I visualize that and I instantly feel safe.
We live in a little house about a mile from the ocean. We've painted just about every wall of our home with a bright color. We've hung art from our travels. We've planted and pruned many varietals in our backyard. We've covered our patio with comfy cushions and pillows for all day hanging in the sunshine.
We also live in Venice Beach which in the past few years has come to match some of the most expensive places in the United States to live.
So when our rent went up yet again a couple of months ago my husband and I started entertaining the idea of moving. Moving just a few blocks. Moving a few miles. Moving to the other side of town.
We toured buildings wth saltwater pools. And Viking appliances. And a concierge that could get you Beyonce tickets (their words exactly.)
I wore little wedge sandals, pearl earrings and a cardigan.
I entertained the idea of living in a two bedroom apartment. A fancy pants apartment, mind you.
And all of the sudden this house that I've loved with all of my heart started to look ... undesirable. I noticed the scuff marks on the walls. The little crack in our mint green bedroom. The way the living room looked so dark in the morning.
My husband and I spoke with our landlord and told her we'd be moving out in just a month. She cried. We cried. We felt confused. We didn't sleep. We tossed and turned.
A lightbulb came on.
We aren't those people.
The apartment was nice. But it wasn't us. Where would we host our gang of friends? Where would we get a delicious local coffee? Where would we hang all the dreamcatchers and shells and art we brought from our travels?
We need soul.
We need scuff marks. Imperfections. Space. Natural beauty.
It was this instant shift in perspective. Of going from seeing something from a lack or it being "not enough" to seeing through the lens of gratitude.
I began to look at all areas of my life and notice where I could offer up more gratitude. There's so many.
We won't stay here forever. But we know we are building a home with soul. And scuff marks.