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Hart Beat

Celebrating summer

Finding inspiration for getting up each morning becomes something of a challenge. . That is just a fact of life.

Occasionally, however, while grappling for a reason to roll out of bed, I find that a cheerful song or even the faint pre-dawn light peaking through my bedroom window is inspiration enough to ignite my enthusiasm for the day.

Today, as I struggled to get myself out of bed, I decided straightening my living room and kitchen was a good start to my day.

I know most people wouldn't find cleaning house acceptable as a reason to celebrate a new day, but then most people don't like to play house. I, weirdly enough, do. While that may not seem like much of a reason to burst into action, it works for me.

Most days that is, although lately I've been a tad depressed about the state of my living quarters, a situation made worse by a sudden influx of home decorating magazines with which I torture myself. Have you ever noticed how your favorite magazines all seem to arrive on the same day? There is no surer way to send me into a dissatisfied mood than to have the arrival of my Martha Stewart Living and Sunset magazines arrive in my mailbox on the same day. I always find myself overwhelmed by the pretty photographs of beautiful locations, while reclining in the midst of my piles of unfolded laundry and stacks of dishes, all needing to be put away.

The reality is I'd like nothing better than to curl up with my new, glossy magazines and block out any scene that isn't clean and dust-free. For a few moments I want to pretend I live surrounded by luxury and landscapes that rival ultra-rich people's summer homes in the Hamptons or even on Mercer Island.

But I live in a humble, little Sunnyside neighborhood, where I'm usually content to putter around in my yard or lounge around in my kitchen over a late morning cup of coffee and a good book. While my little cottage is neither beautiful or cozy, most days it suits my need to relax in quiet peace in well worn surroundings.

Most days, I find inspiration in my little house and even from my monster shade tree, which is happy to give me a crop of leaves that rivals entire forests each year.

So although I'm envious of the elegant, modern homes shown on the pages of magazines, I truly do find inspiration in my little house and yard.

I take pleasure in watching the growth of my tomatoes and pepper plants. I'm pleased with the fragrant blossoms in my rose garden and I love going home each night knowing I can sit in my little back yard in the shade of my giant tree.

So today's inspiration is that I get to go home tonight to a clean house, where I can step outside, relax and enjoy the first full day of summer. You know what? That is also inspiration enough to get up tomorrow as well!

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