Monday, January 16, 2012


Layla over at The Lettered Cottage is having a Word of the Year resolution challenge.  When I read her word UP and why she chose it and what an inspiration it is to her, I thought I would be up (get it, haha) for the challenge.  I had a look back at my goals - big, small, and personal which you can read about here - and thought what really sums up everything I want to accomplish this year is the word EDIT.

Now believe me when I say that I am no stranger to editing.  Hubby has had two books published and has had many academic articles published and all of them were edited by yours truly.  When the text is finally wrangled into clear, concise prose that will say just what is intended with just the right amount of words - no extra - and maybe a little poetic spin on things to make it memorable - well that is perfection.  It is one of those things that you just feel in your gut when you have it right.  Editing one's home or life is really no different I have discovered.  There is often some chaos before the simplicity and calm reigns, the process can be painful, but the results are so worth it, and the editing gets easier the more you do it. 

I looked up what edit means in the dictionary and I like the definition:  to alter, adapt, or refine especially to bring about conformity to a standard or to suit a particular purpose.  Doesn't that work well when thinking about editing your home.  It doesn't mean to make it perfect, it means to make it conform to a standard and to suit a particular purpose.  Do you have a standard for your home?  There is a certain level of tidiness that I feel comfortable with.  When things slip below that point, I get antsy.  Now my standard may be lower than other people's (and I know it is), but it's what works for us.  If I peg the standard too high, then life becomes focused on maintaining the home rather than living in it.  

The things I think of when I envision editing would be eliminating clutter - it make your home so much easier to keep tidy;  having a place for everything that you need or want to keep;  having a system to maintain the order, and finally refining the things in your home so they are cohesive and pleasing to the eye.  

I love the standard William Morris set in his now famous words:  have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.  And that, my friends, is why I want to focus on editing my life and home this year.  It won't be a finished project when December 31st, 2012 roles around, but rather EDIT is what I will focus on as I go about my daily life this year.  


  1. We all can use a little editing in our lives. Loved this post!

  2. Lovely. I imagine that once you start to edit you will reflect on all that was unnecessary. Certainly I think that is what would happen to me. I remember years back when I read about Jane Siberry (not sure that name rings a bell with you) but she took on a minimalist approach and got rid of all her worldly possessions. I do believe she held on to a favourite pair of shoes etc. but the word simplify always makes me think of her. It was more about a philosophy of life.
    Sorry if I am rambling on a Monday morning but certainly this strikes a chord in me.

  3. This is a great word for 2012. I need to edit our home and share with those who might need it....

    I am like you...I get antsy when things get too messy. I cannot concentrate on anything until everything is in order.


  4. Oh I need to borrow that word. I really need to edit "stuff" I have around here as well as I edit the written word. Perhaps my word should be "time" because I never seem to have the time to do all I want to do.

  5. I do love to edit! What a great word for the year!

  6. What about sentiment? I have some things that are neither useful nor beautiful but they belonged to my aunts. Can't get rid of them.

  7. Great words, Grace. I have a lot of stuff my mom gave me. I had to choose what to keep. A few very important things and gave the rest to Goodwill. Before giving the stuff away, I took pictures of the pieces, placed the pics on beautiful mats, framed them and they are now on display for all to see in the living room. I have the memory, but I don't have to keep it all. I'm a big believer that clutter has to be managed and this task can take a lot of energy out of a person's life. Great, great inspiration, Grace. Thanks for posting this. It's a great reminder of how I'd like my life to be.

  8. Great post, Grace :-) My word for of the year resolution is actually three words - get 'er done! I have so many projects that are on the go or that I've been thinking of doing. I've really been making an effort to do instead of think, and it's working :-) Hmmmmm, maybe that should be my word - DO.

    As for editing - I desperately need to edit my basement! I've started with one room, and I have to say that although it's been hard at times (I just can't part with some of my mom's & grandma's stuff), it feels really good to be able to actually see the floor in the room for the first time in years! And I find I've really been cutting back on the knicknacks throughout the house - it somehow makes the house feel calmer when there aren't things on every flat surface :-)