0

The Year of the Sheep, My Take

On February 19, 2015, we will move into the Year of the Sheep (otherwise known as the Ram or the Goat.)

We will be moving out of the Year of the Horse.

Horses I am into.  I absolutely love horses.  They may just be my favorite animals.

But Sheep?  I mean, I really don’t think about sheep so much.

What you talkin’ about, Katie?  (Source)

Because I was a bit dissatisfied with what information I found on the Internet regarding the Year of the Sheep, I decided to sit down and see if I could get some of my own guidance, (a.k.a. “automatic writing).

This is what came through:
I wrote, “I ask for information/guidance regarding the energies of the Year of the Sheep that is coming up.”

I got:
Sheep’s energy is one of Giving.  It gives milk and wool and is mild-mannered.  There is an abundance energy regarding Sheep in that it can give and give and not be affected much in that giving.  The milk is easily replaced as is the wool.

Source  “Comfort & nurturing” are marks of the Year of the Sheep

Innocence is the mark of Sheep too.  (Sacrificial lamb.)  Sheep is not necessarily a determined creature but one that is content to follow the herd.

While some people, especially in Western cultures, may see this attribute as a flaw or weakness, in truth, it is simply a willingness to surrender to the flow of the energy currents already present.  Not wanting nor striving to be a “leader” or “unique” can have great benefits.

It has the element of being content with one’s “herd” or tribe and enjoying the comforts of a pastoral life, knowing that there is a shepherd of sorts watching over in protection.  After all, how many tales have a shepherd as an important character?  One who is usually humble and true and free of pretense?

Source

Sheep does not hide nor does it stand out particularly.  Their role may seem passive in Western eyes, yet Westerners have forgotten the value of going with the flow and allowing.

After all, if a sheep strays from the herd, that is when disruption happens.  If the shepherd is a true one, it is IDEAL to stick with the herd — so before one judges the “herd mentality,” remember that the herd mentality can be healthy if it’s in the highest good of all.

As far as 2015, the Year of the Sheep, goes…. expect abundance — not in the flashy, showy way — but in the creature comforts of home and family life.  If one can unplug from the go-go-go mentality of the Western culture and learn to surrender to a calmer, more meandering path, one will discover the joys of a slower pace and really ENJOY life.

While the Year of the Horse had its ups and downs and excitements, the Year of the Sheep will be a welcome one with its nurturing energies if one can recognize that there is value in living day to day at a slower speed.  Give thanks for the blessings that are here!  Sheep shall give great comfort and joy.  She is The Great Provider and while she does not fan fancy feathers nor strut her stuff, her gifts are 10,000-fold if you could all just settle down and honor her.

Sheep is the 8th animal in the Chinese zodiac.

The numerology adds up to an 8 year (2+0+1+5=8).

8 is the number of prosperity and abundance and flow.

It is tradition in China to prepare for the Chinese New Year by letting go of the old — decluttering and cleaning house!  Please join us for DECLUTTER YOUR WAY TO CLARITY so Sheep can have room and space to provide for you in 2015.  Click here for testimonials and to sign up!  

1

How to Declutter — Japanese-style!

I’ve been antsy to write this book report since I read Marie Kondo’s book a few weeks ago.  

 

Turns out you CAN judge a book by the cover.  (Notice the all lower caps.  love.)  This one is precious from the outside all the way through.

First, be warned:  Marie Kondo is Japanese.  She’s tiny and quaint and precious as far as I can tell, having not met her in person (yet).     Her book is about “tidying,” which in plain English translates to “decluttering and organizing” which in most American households translates to “getting rid of your s@#* that has piled up.”

I have not been to Japan (yet), but let’s face it, I think the Japanese have we Americans whooped in the “tidying” department.  You never hear about McMansions over there.  No, instead visions of crisp white mats on floors and neat little chopsticks and perfectly-rolled sushi fill my brain when I think of Japan.

When I think of typical middle-America?  I see SuperSizeMe and strip malls and big cars and traffic, truth be told.

So.  We are whooped.

Top that by the fact that Marie has literally been decluttering (tidying) since she was FIVE, stealing her mother’s housekeeping magazines to learn as much as she could and sneaking into her siblings’ rooms to practice her techniques.

By the end of the book, we also discover that every time she enters her home, she has a ritual where she unpacks her purse and places her wallet and few other items in special “homes.”

I have never, ever known anyone to unpack her purse every day and have special little spots in the house for all the items within.

Here’s the painful part of all of this.

Her method — the KonMari Method — makes 100% total and complete sense from a feng shui point of view.

It’s humbling.

In all my days of preaching about the impact of clutter, this woman puts my American-self to shame.

Rest assured, she and I have very similar styles.

Here is where we agree:
1.  She believes in “discarding” first.  YES!  Get rid of it.  Please.  Just.
2.  She believes that organization containers are bogus and that the house is equipped with proper storage.  YES!  Don’t get sucked into The Container Store thinking that it will cure your organizational woes!  It won’t.
3.  She poo-poos buying in bulk.  YES.
4.  She believes that every item has a life of its own and that it has a profound affect on the owner.  YES!  A million times, yes!
5.  She believes that if it “doesn’t spark joy,” it goes!  YES!!!  And I thank her profusely for this term because I was using the vague: “Does it raise your energy?” for each item, and I know for a fact that this sparking-joy clause is super-charged and powerful beyond belief!
6.  She declutters according to category (clothes, books, etc.) rather than room.  YES YES YES!
7.  Every item needs a home.  YEEEEESSSSSSSSS!

God, I love this woman.

Now, for the American vs. Japanese part:
Here is where I may not agree, as well the main things I learned from her thus far:
1. She believes that every one can organize according to her system, that different personalities and brains can operate under the KonMari Method.  I, for one, love “studying” how different we all are, and I can speak for myself that, being a fast-moving right-brainer, there are some practices she recommends that wouldn’t serve me.  Still.  I may try them…
2.  She likes to fold.  She is teaching me to like folding.  Folding is fun.  Well, it is when you get the results of her technique which have sort of kind of blown my mind.  But yes, folding can be fun.  (Remember that origami comes from Japan, right everyone?  Okay, so it’s ingrained over there.  I’m learning.)

3.  She doesn’t realize that she is practicing feng shui!!!  This tickled me because she has a small and lovely section on feng shui, but she claims not to identify with it, as she’s never studied it.  Sure, she uses a different language than we consultants would use, but I’d say this woman is practically a feng shui master herself — at least when it comes to the items in a household.
4.  She skips over certain very large topics that Americans would need to read about.  For example, garages don’t seem to come up.  At all.  And we all know about stuff and garages.

Still, Marie Kondo is the Saint of Stuff as far as I’m concerned.  Her approach is minimalist to be sure, but in all my years of practicing feng shui, I can attest to minimalism — or close to it — as being the way to go.

Read her book.

Or, do that, and/or take my online Declutter Your Way to Clarity course where you will get an email a day to motivate you.

Bottom line:  Whether you live in Japan or America, clutter affects you.  Your stuff affects you!  And you won’t know how much it affects you until you deal with it.

After all, when you deal with your stuff, you deal with your life.  Period.

0

Love Me Some Turquoise

Sometimes, I just need to play!

Olioboard is a great tool for designers to use for clients and for themselves when coming up with initial ideas for a space.  Or if you are thinking of re-doing a space, give Olioboard a whirl.  You can even buy the products on-site, and it calculates a budget to boot!

They also have tons of contests (I have no idea what you win), but when I saw one for a TURQUOISE LIVING ROOM, oh, I just had to….

This is what happened:
Turquoise & amber
I’d live here, would you?   To each her own!

If you are so inclined, and you are reading this in November, consider voting HERE… you know, just for fun!
xo, K

0

The Home Office + Guest Bedroom Combo

I’m a huge fan of the guest room/home office combo!  Why have an entire room used only on the occasions that people are coming to stay with you?  While I think it’s great to have guest rooms, as it symbolically “invites” in the good, it’s also important to keep the chi circulating there, and what better way than to actually USE it?  The trick to pulling off the office/guest room is to get creative and to be honest with yourself with the needs for the room.  (i.e. Is it more important to function as an office or a bedroom?  Who will be visiting?  Can you surrender your office for the days that your guests are there?) 
Here are some examples below that may give you some ideas for yours:
Modern flair!  Source
Sofa beds…in purple.  Yes!  Source

Lofty  Source

Playful, fun, and functional.
Source
This is for those who need an office more than a guest room but want that option.  Clever, isn’t it?
Source

IMPORTANT NOTE:  None of these rooms would be appropriate for a bedroom that someone used all the time, as it’s not conducive to have an office IN your room unless you have no other choice, and even then, there would have to be some cures set in place.  These examples are ONLY for the guest room and office combo!  Also, it’s important to establish the “command” position when working at a desk as well as when sleeping.  (The “command” position simply means you have a view of the doorway of the room.)  This could be taken care of with some strategically-placed mirrors.  

Thanks!  

–K

0

Is Feng Shui for Christians?

The short answer is YES!

YES times a billion and times infinity!

Source

So…why is this even a topic?

The fact is, I moved back to the South (aka The Bible Belt) after years of being out west, and since my return, I have heard little whispers amongst some folks that feng shui may go against their religion.  Therefore, I am writing here today as a way to clarify and bust through that myth once and for all.

FENG SHUI IS NOT A RELIGION.  Nor will it mess with yours.  In fact, it is my job to work with whatever religion and/or spiritual practice you prescribe to!

Isn’t that awesome?!

It’s true.

But hold tight.  What that means is that feng shui is also for Muslims, atheists, Jews, Pantheists, Buddhists, Hindis, Baha’is, Taoists, yogis and yoginis, Wiccans, Sikhs, Hare Krishnas, Pagans, and any other religious or spiritual practice under the sun.

Source

Because feng shui is just that:  spiritual.  It’s not a religion.  It’s an ART and a SCIENCE with spiritual undertones.

And even if you don’t even consider yourself spiritual, feng shui will work for you!

I pride myself on working within the context of my client’s lifestyle.  In fact, that is the point of feng shui.  My suggestions must work for YOU, the unique being that you are.   I’ve worked with clients who practice religions with names that I cannot even spell or pronounce (or remember for that matter), and you know what?…

It’s ALL good.

But just in case you are Christian, and you still have doubts, keep reading, so I can once and for all, erase any thoughts that feng shui is not for you.

WHY FENG SHUI IS FOR CHRISTIANS TOO:
First of all, you are probably already practicing feng shui.  The truth is, if you clean your home regularly, make it nice for guests, take care of your furniture and belongings, declutter often, have some sort of organizational system, and change up the pillows or artwork now and then, you are practicing a basic form of feng shui.  You do not have to put up dragons or crystals to be “doing feng shui.”

I sometimes tell clients to get their house “ship-shape.”
 Surely, Noah did to some extent?

Feng shui is about HONORING YOUR SPACE, or, in more religious terms, making your space holy, sometimes in very simple ways.  Sadly, in today’s disposable and fast-paced society, most folks don’t even know what honoring one’s space even means.  Which is where I come in.  🙂

Furthermore, I will be bold here, and announce, in all my unscholarliness, that it may be that Jesus “did” feng shui. 

Source

And so did Mary, and Moses, Abraham, Lazarus, and other Biblical persons.

Here’s the bottom line:  These spiritual figures more than likely had some sort of order to their belongings, but did they call it “feng shui”?  Probably not!  But that is because they didn’t speak Chinese.  (…that I know of.)

“Feng shui” translates to “wind, water” in Chinese, which has to do with the “flow” in a space.  In feng shui, a home must be inviting.  There are countless stories in the Bible that involve inviting people into one’s home, are there not?

Also, feng shui may just be IN 
the Bible…(again, it’s just not called that).  Think about it:  Solomon was given implicit instructions for building his temple.  Again, art meets science in the form of deliberate architecture.  Was it called feng shui?  No, because the temple was not in China, but the idea of building with intention is 100% aligned with feng shui-like concepts.

And consider this:  A priest, when blessing a space, is practicing a basic feng shui ritual.

Even Luke knew a little feng shui:
Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace be to this house!’ Luke 10:5 
In feng shui, this is known as as setting an intention, a.k.a saying a prayer.

So please, if anyone tries to tell you that feng shui is “against your religion,” ask them first — in a nice way — what they know about feng shui.  I guarantee you that they know very little and that they have made some false, uneducated assumptions!

In the end, people only come to feng shui when they are ready.  It is powerful work, and yes, I believe  that it is “holy” work.

My theory with feng shui?  Don’t knock it until you try it.  No matter what your religious beliefs may be!

AND I ALSO PRACTICE FENG SHUI!
(Source) 

1

Healthy and Easy Fall Vegetable Soup (Vegan & Protein-packed)

Yum.  I made up this recipe the other day using what was in my kitchen, and it turned out!

So here is goes, without amounts. because I just threw it in the pot!

In large pot, heat COCONUT OIL on medium heat.  Add a generous amount of TURMERIC and CUMIN and a clove or two of CHOPPED GARLIC and stir until a bit heated.  Then toss in chopped CELERY and  CARROTS and sauté for a bit.

Boil some water on the side.  Add a vegan BOUILLON CUBE and a good amount of REAL SALT.

source

Peel a SWEET POTATO and chop it up into bite-sized pieces.

In main pot, add the BOILING WATER (with dissolved bouillon cube), then put in the sweet potato, some already-cooked CHICK PEAS (I made mine the day before according to the package — makes an awesome snack with olive oil and salt — but canned is good too), a can of STEWED TOMATOES, and some QUINOA.

Add some VEGGIE BROTH if you have it, for another layer of taste.   I also put in a BAY LEAF and some BLACK PEPPER.

Cook for at least 20 minutes more, so that the vegetables are at the consistency that you like them and the quinoa cooks.

YUM!

The result should be a nice soup with a bit of sweetness from the carrots and sweet potatoes in a lovely golden hue, thanks to the turmeric.

Enjoy!  Satisfying and healthy!

2

A Feng Shui Wedding

I love love.
I really do.
Therefore, the Playing Cupid part of my job is just-so-fun.
For those of you unfamiliar on the workings of a feng shui consultation, when a client comes to me, I don’t start by rearranging furniture.
I start by asking them their objectives, a.k.a. what they want to improve or manifest in their lives.  
In this case, this particular young woman – the brilliant Heather Goldberg of Spork Foods – was tired of dating Mr. Wrong after Mr. Wrong, and was finally ready for ever-lasting love.
She wanted the fairy tale ending.
I’d say she got it.  This photo was taken three days ago.
FACT:  Two years ago, she called me for a feng shui cure for romance.  
OTHER FACT:  She met her groom THAT WEEK!
Once upon a time very swiftly became happily ever after thanks to some ridiculously simple feng shui cures.
Yes, yes, yes. 
I’ll share the cures with you, but only if you read to the bottom of the blog, okay?
Here goes:
1.     She already had these paintings, which are a pair (ahem, a pair is good for Romance), and are the colors significant to the Romance gua. (pinks, reds, and whites).  
And look!  There’s a diamond ring on them!   While these paintings may not be the typical images for “love and marriage,” (neurons?) I didn’t see anything harmful in its message, so I suggested she give them a whirl.
2.     How perfect!  She already had this box with the word “LOVE” etched on the top.  Precious.  I told her to write down the qualities she wished for in a man on little pieces of paper and place them in there.
3.     Now she had created a little love vignette to attract her future groom!   On the nightstand they went, which also happened to fall into the Romance section of her bedroom according to the bagua map, and VOILA!
….THAT SAME WEEK, she met the man you see standing by her side at the altar. 
The wedding was beautiful, the bride stunning and beaming, the groom handsome and grinning, the dancing divine, and the food (vegan!) fabulous, the guests glowing.
Now….here is an interesting side fact, and why I wanted you to keep reading.  While mingling with friends and family at the wedding, I discovered that the fair bride had shared this particular cure to some of her single friends some while back, in hopes that it would work for them too.  You know, the part about making a list and putting it in a “love box.”   Talking to two “participants,” one young lady had had success and found her current and lasting boyfriend, where the other had not.
WHY DOES THIS HAPPEN?  Why do some cures work for some people and not for others??!?!
To begin, Heather was READY.  I mean, ready.  The quality of the tone in her voice when she called me, plus the fact that she went into action immediately setting the cures, helped a lot.  She was razor-sharp decisive.  She wanted to get married.  Period.
Also, the rest of her home was “feng-shui-ready.”  Just because the Romance section is decorated with hearts and lovebirds does not mean that the rest of the home is clear of “romantic blocks.”  For example, take a look at your Self-Knowledge section.   Without a strong sense of self, how can you know what you want in a partner?   Or what about clutter?  Clutter can be the death of everything, no matter where you find it.
The point is, romance, or lack of, can show up in hidden places throughout the home, so please don’t think that adding some pieces of paper to a box is all you have to do! 
Of course, in this woman’s case, it worked and her wish came true almost instantaneously, but that was because she was 85% there already…and it showed in her home.
While there may be some layers to go through, and there may be some resistance in implementing certain cures, and a little more effort than placing traits into a Love box, feng shui always yields results in some form or another.
So the question remains:  Do you really want the fairy tale ending?  Or not?
Congratulations, Heather and Josh Bell!!!  Love y’all…
Good.  Because I expect more wedding invitations in the mail, please.  J

0

My Little Blogging Break(through)

My darling readers!

I am taking an unexpected break from blogging for a while —

The truth is, as much as I love to write, this Year of the Horse has already taken off for me — has it for you too? —  like crazy fast that I can barely keep up!  I gotta make sure I have my balance so I can take ‘er full speed ahead!  One of the things I’m letting go of is the pressure to blog, and I tell you what, it was a strange relief to make that decision.  Took some pressure off myself, really.

If you happen across this message, perhaps it is a sign that you too can cut back or let go of something that you hadn’t considered?  

I’d LOVE to see you over email however!  If you’d like my every-so-often emails in your Inbox, please contact me at katierogers777@gmail.com.  And Like Katie Rogers Feng Shui on Facebook.  I will be piping up in these places from time to time….

…but for now — it’s focus time!

…and no worries, I’ll be back.  Trust me, I have blog ideas galore, just waiting in the thresholds.

Cheers, and I hope to hear from you elsewhere!

All in good chi,
Katie

P.S.  Please:  Use the search engine right there to your right with the little magnifying glass:  I have so much material on here.  Words like “money” “romance” “books” “space clearing” — you name it, should yield results!  Thanks!

0

The Easiest Organization Method I Know

I am not naturally organized.

And I don’t care.

I have other talents.

But I do sometimes envy those OCD folks because, oy, organization is SO SO SO SO SO important to feng shui.

I do my best.  And I must say, I’ve come a long way since being the messiest roommate in the college suite.

Of course, in my weaker moments, when I have let things go a bit, I cough it up to my creative energy or right-brainedness or whatever mumbo-jumbo…
…and it’s true, my strengths are there (even in mumbo-jumbo)…and I’m not going to fight that, because I’m lucky in that regard…but still….

…if you know anything about feng shui, you know that it’s a total COP OUT to not get organized, no matter what side of your brain you tend to favor.

Don’t COP OUT, People!  I have help for you!!!   And it’s easy as 1-2-3.   Literally.  Yay!

My feng shui teacher, Sharon Stasney, (look up her books), taught us this method.   It works for creatives and neat freaks alike.

Here it is.  Dun, dun, duuunnnn….


Sometimes a scary word, huh?  PRIORITIES.    
Not this time.
This time, it’s gonna save yo’ little fanny!

The PRIORITY SYSTEM:
Priority 1 items are the things you use almost every day and are placed in the most accessible places.  The most accessible places may be your desktop, your countertop, or next to the sink in your bathroom, or the top of your nightstand.  The ONLY things that should be in this highly accessible places are things you use frequently!!!

(Note:  All these kitchen photos are a Real Simple Real-Life Kitchen Makeover.)

there is still quite a bit out. let’s hope these people actually cook and drink coffee.  I bet they do!

see how when you leave only Priority 1 items out, it just looks sooooooo nice and clean and fresh.  rest for your brain!  
i.e. In my own kitchen, on my countertop, I have a toaster and my Vitamix.  I do have a few supplements sitting out as well a jar for the scrub brush.  And my fruit bowl in the corner, for aesthetics and easy-grabbing.  That is all.  I used to have a nice set up cookbooks out, but guess what, I rarely use recipes and when I do, it’s usually off the Internet, so I moved them to…
—a Priority 2 area!  i.e. The bookshelf.  I’d still like access to them, but honestly, even as I write this (I don’t have many because I pared down greatly over the years), I’m wondering if I should pare down even more!  Anyway,Priority 2 areas are places that are accesssible but not in your immediate experience all the time.  In the kitchen, it’s the drawers and cabinets that are easy to get to. In the office, it’s the file cabinet that you may need to reach a little further for or just across the room.

Priority 2 in the Kitchen.  You don’t need pots and pans on the counter!
I see Priority 1, 2, and 3 here, really.

–The Priority 3 areas are those places where you store items, but, say, you may need the step stool.  It’s the bundt cake pan for the cakes you bake three or four times a year, that you put in the overhead cupboard.  It’s the part of your basement where you store your summer clothes in the winter.  It’s the attic, where you store your Christmas decorations, saving the linen closet for linens, etc.

–I even like to tag on Priority 4 areas for stuff like taxes from the past 7 years or even keepsakes that you aren’t going to revisit often.  That’s the back of the attic and the back of the basement.  🙂
This is IMMENSELY helpful on getting your home in order. 
After all, when this is all done, maintenance will be the key.  And oh, what a key that is!  But don’t worry about it now…
JUST GET TO IT!

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt