GratiTuesday Guest Post: Space

Guest post by Pat, Retirement Transition

I love when an idea comes at me multiple ways.  This has happened in the past couple of weeks with the concept of Space.

During a Thai Yoga Massage (one of my 52 New Things this year inspired by Joanne at My Life Lived Full), apparently, my “space meridians” are blocked.  The therapist asked me “What do you need to let go? Where are you holding ground too much?”  He suggested I look at adding more space into my life, getting outdoors, taking some action, taking some risk.

Then the New Moon Ritual for me this month (another New Thing) had similar space references: “What boundaries do you have to leap over? How will you broaden your horizons?”  And my first cards pulled in my new Tarot Purpose deck (yup, still another New Things item) were: Make Decisions, Protection, and Letting Go.

The Universe is definitely sending me a message about letting go and expanding.  Not surprisingly, this spring I have been focusing on space with our recent downsizing move.  Letting go (finally) of the old space where I felt shackled.  Designing this new space to be comfortable and welcoming.  Making the new space the right environment for living the retirement lifestyle I envision.

So today I am Grateful for my Space.  While it is not completed in design/creation, there are multiple elements that make me grateful for this space we are creating:

  • There is positive energy in this house! It has solid “bones” (100 years worth), lots of woodwork, unique chandeliers, and stained glass windows to provide beauty.
  • The house feels like my sanctuary. It has many nooks and (new) comfy chairs where I can cuddle to read, write, and daydream. We’ve decorated with artwork that reflects our travels and love of arts & crafts shows.
  • It has the bigger kitchen that was a “must have” and is encouraging me to cook again. (And the 2-bay garage for hubby’s toys.)
  • We are working on creating outdoor spaces as well – a porch to sit and watch the world go by and a patio for friends to gather for evening meals.
  • I am grateful that I have the ability and the support (thanks, hubby) to create a space that brings me joy and that allows me to embrace the lifestyle I want to live at this stage of life.

I am grateful for my new space and looking forward to expanding in entertaining of friends (which for me is taking risk).  Universe… I’ve heard your message.

From Janis:

Thank you, Pat, for sharing your GratiTuesday guest post with us! The space you are creating sounds cozy and welcoming, and reflective of you and your husband’s interests and personalities.

For those of you who haven’t yet discovered Pat’s blog, you are in for a treat. Join her on her journey “envisioning & implementing life’s next stage”.

Please stop by next Tuesday when Marty from Snakes in the Grass shares his gratitude.

Author: Janis @

My blog is about travel, relationships, photography, and whatever else pops into my head (even, sometimes, issues surrounding retirement and aging).

55 thoughts on “GratiTuesday Guest Post: Space”

  1. It’s so amazing when the Universe sends us the same message over and over in different ways! Even better is that you’ve been listening 🙂

    I am so glad you are having fun with New Things!! … yet another way to create space in your life 🙂…. and I love the fact you’ve created this wonderful new space for this new part of your life!

    Thai Yoga Massage and New Moon Ritual are both new things to me and now you have me curious too!!

    1. Hi Joanne, I’m loving the new things approach. It’s impacting me in so many ways! Another New Moon Ritual this week coming up. Not sure about them, but it’s a fun exploration!

      1. You’ve really embraced the concept and made it your own!
        I did some reading about New Moon rituals and I think of it as a form of mediation – always a good thing in my opinion, but something I’ve never mastered. Perhaps today is a good day for me to try again 🙂

        Happy New Moon!

        1. I’ve decided that for me this New Moon Ritual will be about summer planning. I love that you’re looking into meditation for it. I also have not mastered meditation…but I’m sticking to planning. That I have mastered!

  2. This was a great post. We all get those ‘messages’ from time to time, but we usually ignore them. Too busy. Maybe later.

    But you listened and now you are reaping the benefits! Doesn’t get much better. Enjoy your new space and enjoy making it “your space”! Dinner on the patio sounds great! 😄
    🔹 Ginger 🔹

    1. Ginger, We left our house this week to travel to our other space (our cottage near the beach) and for the first time in years, I was a bit sorry to be leaving to go to the beach! LOL. I realized I now have 2 spaces, both I am very grateful for. And yes, I do try and listen to the messages… it’s been a learning experience to be mindful enough to hear them.

  3. You have to pay attention to the Universe, or it’ll never stop bugging you! I’m in a Let’s Do Things Differently phase of my life, so I appreciate the effort it takes to make changes. Oddly enough you’re the second person this week to reference New Moon Ritual so now, of course, I have to find out what this is! The Universe has spoken.

    1. Yup, and the new moon is this week! I found a reference that has a different topic ritual each month depending on your birthday. Of course, I can’t recall where I found it…. but this month is “friendship and wishes” for me. I’m trying to decide what to do tomorrow for it!

  4. It definitely sounds like the Universe IS sending you a message, Pat. I love how you are responding with openness and enthusiasm. I need to start listening to what the Universe is saying to me. I’ll keep you posted!
    Great post!

    1. Donna, It’s always interesting to me where the messages come from… often it’s in blog posts as I tend to read a lot. And then my basic curiosity starts to churn. Space was so weird though…it came from such different directions! I’m waiting to hear you post on the first message you recieve!

  5. Congrats on “letting go” and creating a new and satisfying space for you and your husband. It sounds like you moved to a different place and house, which is always a bit nerve-wrecking and challenging, but creates so many new opportunities.

    Space is so incredibly important! For me, it is personal space (also called “me-time) and being in nature that would define that term the best.

    1. Good point, Liesbet! The concept of space can be so personal and ever-changing. You and I have talked about the importance of “me-time” and how we need to be able to carve it out for ourselves. I imagine that, in your current situation of traveling in your van, creating me-time space has taken on a whole new level of focus.

    2. Leisbet, A very different concept of space and one I can understand in your situation. Creating the space that fits our current life has been less nerve-racking than I thought. The outcome has been too good!

    3. That’s why we love housesitting as it gives us opportunities to create ‘me-time’ spaces for both of us. So important when we are together so often, not that its a problem, we all need “space”!

    1. Moving to a new house is a good way to focus on letting go of unneeded stuff. Unfortunately, many people take these unnecessary items with them from place to place. It sounds like Pat has done well in creating her new space… one that makes her and her husband happy.

    2. Jill, we are still working on the letting go of stuff as hubby is a pack rat. But you are right, there is a feeling of liberation!

  6. Hi Pat! (and Janis!) I keep reading about the “52 New Things” so maybe that is my message from the Universe? At any rate, it sounds like you are making the most of your messages for sure. I LOVE the idea of a Thai Yoga Massage…I might have to put that on my list. And I so agree with the idea that we need to keep stretching and expanding no matter where we are and what age we find ourselves. And good for you for loving your new “downsizing”. As you know I call it rightsizing, especially when it leads to so many beneficial things. Enjoy the remainder of your list! ~Kathy

    1. I really like the idea of 52 New Things. I think having goals like that -especially ones that stretch and challenge us – makes life much more interesting. I can’t imagine ever saying, “well, I guess that’s it… no more to learn.”

    2. Kathy – I often of call it rightsizing as we got the bigger kitchen and garage in a smaller house! As we continue to settle into the space, it’s bringing a lot of positives with it. I’m looking forward to summer dinners on the patio!

  7. Hi Pat. I’ve always believed that context matters so very much. There’s a wonderful children’s book by Daniel Manus Pinkwater called ‘The Big Orange Splot.’ The refrain throughout the book is “My house is me and I am it. It looks like all my dreams and it is where I want to live.” Congratulations on listening to the universe and focusing on creating that perfect space for all of your retirement dreams.

    1. Karen, I would not have said that about my precious house. There were things I liked about it, but it was never mine. This one is me. As is our cottage in Florida. It’s a wonderful feeling.

  8. Hi Pat! What a positive post and thank you Janis for hosting Pat as your guest. I enjoy reading Pat’s thoughts as we both have much in common. At the moment I’m not in the right ‘space’. For the last 11 years we have lived downstairs from my ‘in-laws’ in a space that doesn’t feel positive for me. My FIL has passed away and my MIL has moved to aged care. I have never felt this was my ‘space’ and have felt we have been marking time for many years. I am looking forward to selling and moving to a ‘space’ I can call my own and feel comfortable. In the meantime, I have found gratitude in many other areas of my life so I cannot complain. Have a beautiful day, ladies.
    Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond

    1. Although I have not been in a situation like yours, I remember living in a house that never felt like “mine.” 11 years is a long time but I’m sure your MIL and FIL appreciated having you nearby. I’m glad that you will have a place of your own soon and you can fill it with your positive spirit.

      1. Hi Janis, yes I suppose I sound negative and I haven’t minded being here for my in-laws as my parents died many years ago. We have an apartment at the Coast that we escape to and hope to retire to next year. xx

    2. Oh Sue, we do have much in common as we learn more about each other. I can so relate! The house we left never felt like mine as we bought it so my SIL could live with us. We had to buy something quick as my MIL passed suddenly and my husband became responsible for his sister. He promised his mom she would live with us…. we had no idea what we were getting into. It took us years to accept that a death-bed promise like that was not something we needed to keep as it wasn’t right for either us or his sister. It took us over 2 years to find the right situation for her and she is doing well in it. I had an affirmation about finding a house that met our needs and was comfortable (same word you used!)… and we found it after looking for a year. I hope you too can find something that is your own!

      1. Oh we are alike Pat, we will definitely have to meet IRL one day. Yes we are at a point now where we are looking to sell the house to pay for my MIL’s continued aged care. Now our decision also needs thought as to where we will live. We have a beautiful apartment at the Coast but still have responsibilities in Brisbane which is an hour’s drive. I’m sure it will all work out, I just need patience 🙂 xx

        1. As I sit here in our beach cottage, I envy you the “an hours drive”! Our cottage is a 14 hour drive, if no traffic/construction/accident.

          There are some great articles on thinking about what a home needs to be … is it your “entertainment center”, your “base camp”, your “museum”? I have friends who their condo is their base camp… just someplace to sit awhile before they are off again. Another whose house is a museum for all their collectables. For me, I wanted my house to be an entertainment center and a refuge. Hubby views a house as a storage unit for stuff. Hence, a kitchen to cook in and a patio for dining outside (for me) and lots of storage (for him), which I try and ignore (in my desire to simplify). Figure out what you want and need, and then give it time to appear. We looked for over a year… but I was willing to wait till we found something that was right for both of us.

          1. Yes, I’m lucky Pat an hour’s drive is nothing. We are near the ocean and I enjoy walking along the esplanade and always relax there. I like your idea of thinking about what I wanted my home to be. I’m not sure at the moment so you have given me something to ponder. xx

  9. I like the sentiment of letting go, Pat. It’s an important promise to oneself as we trek onward with that Next Journey.

    I also like the (probably unintended) reference to Annie Hall and the universe expanding. My favorite line in that movie is after the young boy — played by Woody Allen — complains about being stressed by an expanding universe, his mother shrieks back at him, “What is it your business?!” I paraphrased that line for years during my career. But now it takes on new meaning in retirement. 🙂 Great post. – Marty

      1. I later realized I wrote that incorrectly. It was a child actor playing his character as a young boy. As unpopular as he is today, I still laugh at the “expanding universe” line.

  10. A very inspiring read, Pat! We could all use some new things in our lives. Sounds like you have a wonderful set-up in your home! We added on to the master which gave us a walk-in closet, a second bathroom and a workspace for me! Then we added a deck onto that addition to sit outside (although the heatwave in California will keep me inside this week). I wonder what the universe has to say about that? Nice to meet you on Janis’ blog while she is out playing!

    1. Hi Terri, your new master sounds amazing! The one thing our new house does not have is a decent size bathroom! It wasn’t on the must-have list… and 100 year old houses were not built with 21st century styled bathrooms. LOL. But, there is so much else to love about it… I need to make sure I don’t start getting bath-room-envy!

  11. Hey Janis, Thanks so much for allowing me to spend time on your blog and meet some of your readers. We have many blogging-buddies in common so it’s fun o cant with them here! I’ll stop in again to see what’s being chatted…and I hop you’re having a grand time on your travels.

    1. I think the “Universe” is an interesting concept. I’m not religious, nor do I consider myself “spiritual” (as some people describe themselves), but I do believe in opening ourselves up to ideas and information that come at us from lots of different directions.

  12. Don’t you just love how the Universe brings you exactly what you need, if you can just bring yourself to listen (or maybe that’s just me). Anyway, I’m so happy to hear you are loving your new space and feeling gratitude.

  13. Pat it sounds as though you are really enjoying redesigning your living space. I love the way you have described the indoor and outdoor areas. Photos?


    1. Jude, if only I could take a decent photo! Seriously, I’m bad at it. I’ve never really tried to get better as hubby is a good photographer so he takes the shots when we travel. Maybe I’ll ask him to take a couple. We are currently in our beach cottage…so it will be awhile!

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