Spring Cleaning

Posted: April 5, 2016 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

By Tricia Lunt, English Faculty

The expression “I’m a mess” may still, to some degree, describe my emotional state, but I hope it will never be associated with my living space.


Thus, I spent this past chilly weekend in Chicago cleaning and rearranging my apartment. An intense seasonal cleaning accompanies the need for renewal. There is no better time than spring to shake off the dust, to purge, to take an accounting and decide what is worth keeping and what, at last, must ultimately be let go.

My new lease begins in June, so I will remain in my current place until May 30, 2017, on that much I can rely. This small certainty feeds my willingness to invest time and energy and money to ensure that my home is as comfortable, efficient, and harmonious as possible.

In my act of decluttering, I have reintroduced myself to some of the principles of Feng Sui, proactively clearing and organizing for utmost efficiency and advantage. I am willing to believe that a clean, well-organized space can have a positive impact, no matter how measurable the outcomes might be.

Ultimately, the energy that moves through a space can be purposefully impacted by thoughtful design, a practice studied and applied according to a variety of formal disciplines, including environmental psychology.

Several recent books discuss the benefits of intentional clearing of space; the most widely read perhaps being The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. The principles are well outlined here. Meanwhile, I utilized the Feng Sui diagram that corresponds with the physical space according to the orientation of the floor plan.


Harmony and balance are my aims. When researching Feng Sui, I discovered my “Love & Relationships” and “Wealth & Abundance” corners were particularly in need of attention. To which I sarcastically and sardonically replied, “Obviously.”

I moved three large and heavy pieces of furniture, providing a better path for energy (Chi or Qi) to flow freely through my bedroom, as I anticipate someday welcoming a new man to fill the space left vacant by the previous one.

The photo previously in the “Love and Relationships”

I Love You Sign 2

A nice reminder.

area also sent the wrong message. I looked around my apartment, only to discover that I own little artwork that evokes positive emotions, surely an important detail. Only one piece was thematically suitable, a framed photo or graffiti reading “I Love You,” which I optimistically moved to the appropriate corner.

Conversely, the center of my creative endeavors aligns with my well-loved kitchen, a room in which I am perfectly at ease. My brilliant friend Kris encouraged me to make the most of this knowledge and start writing in my kitchen, too!

For added comfort, I ordered a lamp for the dining room, which has wanted a better lighting scheme for three years. My beloved dinner guests will no doubt be more relaxed and linger longer in low lamp light.

Bathrooms in Chicago apartments aren’t terribly luxurious, but mine is always clean and uncluttered. For freshness, I bought a new shower curtain, which just made me crave a fluffy new sand-colored bath mat (how have I become the kind of person who craves a bath mat?)

Along with my spring cleaning comes the changing of the wardrobe. Relegating coats and sweaters to the back of my one over-used closet and bringing out piles of summer dresses, shaking them out, hanging them to free the wrinkles trapped all winter represents the height of optimism.

With the best intentions, I have cleaned my place, polished my possessions to make them shine. Nothing more to be done, I gladly bid farewell to a winter dominated by the dark and cold, and move on to a new season, ideally one that will bring both warmth and light.


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