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Notes from the hearth: Being settled in the safe and sane confines of a vintage trailer is good for the wayfaring Senior. A few stepping stones away is the doorstep of my eldest daughter who is running, essentially, a boarding house for family refugees, and such a place one would never wish to graduate from! She’s a magical homemaker, serving up vittles worthy of royalty on a regular basis… and smoothing all the ruffled feathers brought to her home, and turning her husband to on a thousand fixit needs that effectively bring her foundlings into the bounds of self-sufficiency, step by step.

She points out to me that living in a trailer is a great training grounds. She knows…she lived in this very trailer with her husband for three or so years while they put their own house through a vast renovation some ten years ago. Her husband, a contractor, of course did these improvements “in his spare time” (read “hardly any time to breathe, actually”). So it took a long time.

The place has everything one needs for living, but in such efficiency that one HAS TO put things away where they go or else one cannot walk. Like a small boat, you have just enough room for your needs, and no extra. If you need extra room, you have to dump stuff out of your life. One pot, one pan, one whisk, etc. Use, wash, put in cupboard. Soon you are like a short order cook, reaching automatically to where the pot lives and finding it there every time, since there was no place to put it other than where it fits.

For a haphazard soul like me, this is the best boot camp imaginable. I always did say I liked simplicity. Now I get to really orchestrate daily and immediate simplicity or I die of “stuff” in the way. And the more I succeed, the more I like myself!

Will I be able to do this same thing in my new shop? That remains to be seen. The garage at my other daughter’s place is full of boxes containing my working materials and tools and supplies. Really a LOT of it.

Time will tell.

But for now I am remembering a precious meal with family last night with my littlest grandchild prancing around in her auntie’s very high heeled shoes pretending to be a grown up, and my eldest grandchild confident and wise chatting with two of his younger cousins about cars and computers and life. My children scarfed up traditional and original and new culinary wonders with abandon and lots of appreciation. We love each other here, in spite of being very much individual eccentrics, most of us. It’s just GOOD.

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