Getting My Groove Back

I had my groove a few weeks ago but it seems to have gone on a walkabout. Have you seen it?

With the holidays over, it felt good putting our decorations away and tidying up. My husband feels a bit melancholy when they’re over, whereas I’m ready to move on. We strike a balance. I’m trying to find my post-holiday groove. A couple of things remain: a beautiful Christmas bunting and my holiday card selfie.

Christmas bunting

Beautiful Christmas bunting, hand-crocheted and mailed all the way from Australia Thank you, Dani!

My selfie of cards

My cards are still hanging out with my Selfie

Once the boys were back in school and Mike back to work, I embarked on a full-house overhaul. Though I organize for a living, things manage to creep in when I turn my back. I’ve decided to keep a tally this year of everything that comes through the front door unless it’s perishable (plants and flowers) or edible. Even though Mouse-the-Cat thinks that rats are edible, they didn’t make it to my list.

I emptied the book shelf in our living room, put back the essentials and took the rest of the books to a nearby Little Free Library. Our LFL is currently full and enjoying a robust ‘business’ on a daily basis. Once I cleared the shelves, I stacked my favorite gardening books, part practical, part sentimental, on one of the shelves. Now I had room for aย  new piece of art. I’ll write more about that in another post.

cherished garden books

Cherished garden books

I emptied the drawer near my laundry room of random bits and bobs*, then gathered the loose buttons into a jam jar. No sense hiding beautiful buttons in a drawer, when I can enjoy them on display while folding laundry.

Throughout the week I avoided my computer and spent my energy cleaning, sorting, dusting, recycling, donating and throwing away.ย  The process is therapeutic as well as practical. There really is value in a place for everything, and everything in its place.

living room

Living room cleaned and sorted. Wall mural by Donna Pierre

kitchen counter

Clutter-free counters, lemons from the garden, succulents from Laura


Lindy wants to know if I’m *ever* going to sit down

Having said that, all this sorting and cleaning felt a bit obsessive. Was I avoiding something instead? I’m still trying to sort that out. Does this happen to you?

My blog got the cold shoulder last week. It wasn’t planned. I slipped my groove and filled the time with other things. Am I in a rut? Is a rut the same as a groove?

Saturday morning I awoke with vertigo. My heart pounded in my chest and I convinced myself that it would pass. After a long, restless hour I went back to sleep, but awoke hours later too dizzy to remain sitting upright. This turn of events was not helping me get my groove back. Instead it played on an old and deep-seated fear: that I would die before raising my boys. I’m not dying of course, but who said fears are rational? I was just a girl when my dad died, and these fears flare up from time to time.

I saw a doctor today who diagnosed a viral infection of the inner ear. There’s nothing to be done for it but wait for it to gradually improve. Groovy.

What do you do when you slip a groove? How do you get it back?

*bits and bobs. I love that expression, and borrow it liberally from Pauline.


Pictured above:

Beautiful bunting and knee blanket courtesy of Teddy and Tottie

On the book shelf: The Good Life by Sarah O’Neil. Sarah blogs at Sarah the Gardener.

Thank you flowers from Boomdee


37 thoughts on “Getting My Groove Back

  1. Hey! We’ve both had the same notion on the same day. Welcome back. Well, at least to our little Blogging community anyways. While I can’t image the discomfort you’re suffering, I’m relieved to hear it’s an inner ear issue that should find it’s way back to normal, and soon I hope. I’m sad to hear you had such distress hon. These deep seated fears are sure to find their way up to our weakened emotional surface when we’re feeling less than healthy. I know personally, things make more sense when I get regular nights sleep. When that slides, so do my emotions. I can’t think of anything worse in my life than losing my dad. Being so young when you lost your dear dad was so unjust and tragic, it’s no wonder that it affects you still.

    Now look what you’ve gone and done, you’ve made your glorious home sparkle. How clever to focus on a positive project when you’re feeling so anxious. Get this! Now, when you share these imagines I feel rather special because, I’ve been in that kitchen, enjoyed meals at your table and ran my hand across your beautiful mural (oops, hope that was ok). That’s a bit pompous of me but I can’t help it. I felt right at home the moment you invited us in that first exciting night. I knew then, I was meeting a new life long friend. What I didn’t know is, how much alike we really are. I’m always inspired by the honesty in your writing hon. Thanks for this post, Love you dearly xoK

    Liked by 5 people

    • I’m so glad you felt at home on that first visit. I was so excited when you pulled up to the curb and a bit nervous, too, wanting everything to be perfect. We dropped into a comfortable evening so quickly. What a great week, too.

      Thanks for understanding and for your kind thoughts and words. Do you feel blue when you’ve been sick? And yes, definitely when I don’t get enough sleep. I’ve been sleeping deeply this past week, and really struggling to get up in the morning. Last night I was in bed early, but then all the ruckus with the raccoon undid all my good intentions. I rolled out of bed at 7:15 and still left with the boys and their friend on time, but boy did I have to rush.

      Thank you for your love and friendship. xoxox

      Liked by 1 person

      • Honestly hon, sometimes the blues turn up when you least expect it. I usually recognize the triggers and try (if possible) to redirect my attentions. What do they say? If things aren’t going right, go left. Maybe I just live in denial. I’ll plan a day with a friend, start a new project in the craft room or start a conversation if that’s what it takes. Those conversations can be the tough ones, but inevitably shed light. Which turns into sunshine that can brighten the day again. Of course, I’m no expert but I’ll admit, some wounds will never totally heal and the smallest thing can open them again. I don’t want things I can’t change to rule my emotions and take time away from me now. xoxo Love you!


  2. Love seeing your home and what a wonderful mural! Paul has had the same vertigo problem. He didn’t get a definitive diagnosis but after a few weeks of it did gradually clear. He also had a panicky “I’m dying!” response to it the first day or two. Must be related to the illness itself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Sheryl. Funny, but i thought I replied when I read this and see now that I didn’t. Sorry about that.

      I’m glad Paul was okay after a couple of weeks and I’m comforted to know, too, that I’m not the only one feeling panic. I never thought about it being related to the illness. Interesting.


  3. I love your mural – so reminds me of the Tuscan countryside. Yours ts the first house I have seen sport one so perfectly in place! Your beautiful home looks spic and span!

    I hope the inner ear infection clears up quickly and you regain your sense of equilibrium. I know that fear of leaving your kids too soon. I came from a blood line where every body died young and for years I assumed I would too. Obviously it didn’t happen – so now I tend to worry I might stick around too long ๐Ÿ™‚ You know what I say about listening to fears? It’s such a waste of now!

    When I lose my mojo, slip my groove or fall into a rut I used to make paper or fabric flowers. Apparently I used to lose my bits quite often as I still have jars and boxes of flowers despite not having made any at all last year. I learned a valuable lesson last year when I felt I was all at sea, and that was when nothing appears to be happening outwardly, an awful lot is going on inwardly. Just let it be.

    And now as a rousing chorus of “Let it be, let it be, Let it be, Let it be,” [they don’t write songs like this any more ๐Ÿ™‚ ] “Whisper words of wisdom, Let it be-ee…..” rings through my head, I’ll sign off – with lots of love xoxo โค

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well, I’m glad the diagnosis was nothing too serious, albeit rather unpleasant, and I hope you feel better and groovier soon Alys! I have now got that Madonna song “Get into the Groove” in my head! I think sometimes our fears need to be confronted, but often they need to be seen as just normal feelings and ignored so we can get on with life. I hope yours subside.
    I have also had a real tidy up since Christmas, doing room by room – yesterday it was the kitchen cupboards, and I felt so much better afterwards! Today…. who knows?! Have a hood week and take care Alys!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh dear, what a nasty fright you had. Glad you are feeling well enough to blog. I must have lost my groove somewhere, too, because my decluttering is happening at snail’s pace. My intention is for it to go faster but it just isn’t happening. But one thing I have re-found in the mess is Fairy Island. So glad we both have a copy. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh what fun to read that we both have a copy of the same book. That made me smile. My friend Donna gave me my copy. She’s clever and crafty as well, so it’s all a nice fit.

      One trick when you feel your de-cluttering is moving slower than planned is to set a timer. It’s magical. Suddenly you are aware of the passage of time and it pulls you into focus. It can be fun racing the clock too, for instance, lets see how many things I can relocate in thirty minutes or how many pieces of paper can I process. Let me know if you give it a try.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hope your ear infection clears up soon, it’s a scary sensation, I can understand your fears. You really are the most organised person I know! I had a good clear out before Christmas but you wouldn’t think it. I’ve just accepted that my organisation skills flew out the window years ago. Love that mural btw ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Thank you, Aileen, for your empathy and understanding. I appreciate it.

      The trick to staying organized is really more about continuing to organize. Things easily get out of control around a big holiday because suddenly, in addition to every day life, we introduce entertaining, cooking and baking, decorating, gifts, both given and received and parties to attend. If we added any one of those things we might be overwhelmed, but the holidays involve many of them all at once. If you live in the northern hemisphere, you also have a change of weather (and additional clothes to put on and off to factor in). It’s a lot.

      Don’t despair. Break it down into small projects and use a timer. It’s magical.

      I still pinch myself when I see that mural and realize it’s in my house. I love it.


      • I think that’s where I fall down, I have a good clear out and then allow myself to fall back into my cluttered ways again. I shall heed your wonderful advice, I may have a clutter-free house yet!


  7. Oh Alys, that is horrible when your most deep rooted fears rise up. What a relief to find you have an infection and that will pass again.
    Has the doctor explained to you that ear infections of any kind cause a restless spirit as well? Bladder infections have that too. So when that infection was developing but not causing the complaints yet of vertigo and feeling generally sick, the uneasiness and restlessness is already there.
    An unpleasant feeling all together, wanting to enjoy your ‘getting-back-to-order’ and than not ‘feeling’ it. Well plenty of rest, green tea, good food and calm,pleasing surroundings that’s what a patient need;0)
    My advise to you: take your time to proper heal. Women ( I think more than men, call me old fashioned) have no patience with themselves when sick. And you need to take real good care with this one because when not healed properly, that infection will return. ( do you hear my stern ex-nurse voice???)
    Just sit back and enjoy that beautiful, beautiful house of yours. So light, de-cluttered with gorgeous things to look at everywhere. The mural, the chairs in front of the window, the crochet afghan, the books (Bird, Egg, Feather,Nest!!!) your lemons…there is no end to it!
    Take good care and be spoiled, hugs and kisses with healing vibes from Ohio, Johanna


  8. I love your honest voice here, Alys, because I think what you have experienced is very human and we can all relate to it. I am often astounded when I come across people who never seem to lose their groove and I think that’s more concerning. It’s very human to cycle through emotions – especially when you are unwell. I, too, had terrible vertigo once after a plane flight and it made me very anxious for about a month. I took magnesium tablets and once the infection cleared up I started to feel better. I hope you are feeling better soon. Also, I can completely relate to the fear about your children – it’s one of my biggest, too, and I think it’s a very common fear and completely understandable. It really shows the depth of your love and if everyone had that the world would be a much better place. Your house is so beautiful! And you have completely made my year by displaying my bunting and having my afghan on show near that stunning mural. Take care, Alys, and thank-you so much for being awesome! xoxoxox


    • Thank you for your well wishes and for the the nice words on the mural. We had a picture on that wall that we really liked, so used that as a jumping off point for the design. Donna is so talented. She took an idea and made it a wonderful reality. I love the mural, and enjoy it every day.


  9. I too like the sound of bits and bobs. Your time after the holidays sounded like mine: ready to move on and lots of organizing. Hope that ear heals quick. Vertigo is not as fun as the clubs make it sound. I have a lot of trouble with dizziness and my ears ring a lot. Perhaps the two are linked? Hmmm…must check that out. Meanwhile, good to touch base. ๐Ÿ™‚


  10. Ok, Alys. I can’t finish reading the rest of the comments before replying. That was how my Bells started. It’s viral and it made me feel awful and frightened enough to go to a doctor. I rarely go for anything. My gut says you are doing way too much and need more rest. We never allow ourselves to do that. We measure ourselves by what we accomplish. Rest, dear heart and look for ways to slow down. When we don’t, the body smacks us down.

    I must say I love how tidy your place is. I’m still working on it, SLOWLY. Wish you were here to help. ๐Ÿ™‚ My son will be here tonight with his stuff so there will be more adjusting. I find myself needing extra rest just from all the changes going on.

    I think your mind has gone walkabout with mine. I’m finally starting to come out of it. The after Christmas slum, and still have my cards up as well. Most everything has been put away but it seems as though if I take it slow, it’s not such a shock to the system. Going from festive and bright to gray and gloomy takes it’s toll. ๐Ÿ™‚ I do love the bunting and blanket. The mural is stunning. The books draw me in like nothing else though. You know where I’d be standing if I were in your home. I’d probably have to sit on the floor in front of the books and have a look see.

    Hugs to you and please take care. Mailing your card today. Darn post office had the audacity to take yesterday off.


    • Marlene, thanks so much for your supportive words and concern. I was forced to slow down over these past several days since my head went for a spin if I tried to do too much. I slept 10 to 11 hours a night, and rested, read and watched TV, all low-key activities. I’m finally feeling better today, and hope it continues.

      I’m glad to hear your son is almost there (probably there now in fact) but realize it too will be an adjustment. You’ve had many in these past six months, but you keep rolling with it. I know that isn’t always easy.

      I feel at peace at home when the space is open and uncluttered. I’ve always liked the feeling of space and light. I enjoy decorating for the holidays, especially decking the tree and displaying the cards, but I like the freshness that follows as well. Funny that.

      I too love reading the titles of books on people’s shelves. I have very little fiction on my shelves these days, having passed most of the titles on to friends, family or the Little Free Library. I do keep a collection of organizing books, gardening books, household repair and parenting. I also have a few treasures from my childhood that I’ll never let go: two books from my grandfather, a book from my Aunt Alys and books that belonged to my dad. I have a few books from my mother as well, each of them so precious.

      Marlene, if our minds are on walkabout together, then at least they are in good company. I’m going to hold on to that thought. Meanwhile, I”m looking forward to happy mail from you. Enjoy your reunion with your son.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Oh Alys, I hope you are at least starting to feel better! My Sweetie was just diagnosed with Vertigo on Monday. The gave him a prescription for Meclizine. It has definitely helped him with his dizziness and his nausea. He has been off from work for two days, but will be returning to work tomorrow. By the way, do a search for Vertigo on Pinterest and you can see lots of good useful information.

    Your home is absolutely beautiful! Oh there are so many beautiful things that I would wish I had, like your gorgeous kitchen and those awesome lights! You have my DREAM kitchen! I would love to whip up a good meal in there with you one day! Now that would be a blast!

    I know what you mean though about having all of those feelings pop in when something happens to your body that you know is not normal. I feel that way a lot when I can’t breath due to my asthma. I get scared. Please do take care of yourself, give yourself some down time, and make sure you always take time to rest, and I mean really rest. You are too precious to have anything happen to you! Sending you hugs!


    • Thank you, Val. I’m sorry to hear your sweetie is also suffering vertigo. It seems more common then I ever would have thought. I’ve tried several different exercises and also took an over the counter Meclizine. I’m such a light weight though that the medication itself makes me feel drowsy and out of sorts. I’m glad he’s getting some relief.

      I feel much better today, and even feel significantly improved in just the past few hours. I drove today as well, first time since Saturday. Hopefully I’ve turned the corner.

      Thanks for the Pinterest tips and thanks, too, for your kind words about our home. It’s a traditional ranch-style tract home, but we remodeled about a decade ago and were able to add our own touches.

      Asthma must be so scary. My niece and nephews suffered with asthma and occasionally ended up in the ER when they were young. I really feel for you.


      • Asthma is something not to mess with and always, you should have an inhaler on you at all times because you just never know when you will need it. Last year, I almost fainted on our front sidewalk using the snow blower. I just could not catch my breath.

        My Sweetie went to work today after being off for two days. He still has some slight dizziness, but I told him to not drive if he feels like that when he is about to leave work. I will send someone to come pick him up. He almost fainted in Walmart over the weekend. I am glad to hear that you are starting to feel some relief too, because I can see first hand what Vertigo can do to you. Take care of yourself! If I was there, I would wait on you!


  12. My slumps should be so ambitious! Your house looks so incredibly lovely, neat, and organized… it’s absolutely beautiful. Although the mural is stunning, I couldn’t help but focus on that fabulous track light that you had up there on your ceiling. It must be that since we are just getting ready to install track lighting here that it was the first thing I noticed. I love it! Lovely home that you have there. Makes me look around my this disorganization around here and I really need to get going but with the kitchen remodel happening it’s almost impossible-or I’m just not motivated. ๐Ÿ˜• It has been a little difficult to get going since the holidays this year for some reason. So sorry to hear about your vertigo. I sincerely hope that you’re feeling a hundred percent very very soon. Take care of yourself. Hugs!!


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