A hobbit and his nest(s)
I asked my hobbit what the term “nest” means to him. He replied, “A nest is a place to feel safe and comfortable where you can be surrounded by all of the things that are important and familiar. A nest is the opposite of adventure.” Click here
to go back and read my introductory post about the hobbit.
Remember: The Hobbit’s super-power lies in the ability to expertly mix a balance of meaningful, mindful routine with an appreciation for the finer details that make the mundane moments beautiful while tossing in a healthy dose of adventure to make his house feel even more treasured when he’s home. The Hobbit adds layers of texture and delight to the forgotten corners of the day. The Hobbit is a master at celebrating both big and small moments, which turns life into an adventure and our house into an inspiration.
I’ve italicized one of the sentences above. What my hobbit doesn’t realize about his nesting ability is that he is very, very good at making use of ALL the corners of our home and turning them into meaningful nesting spaces. As I began to think about what I wanted to say regarding the concept of a nest from the Hobbit’s point of view, I knew I had to talk about ALL the nests around the house. You see, a hobbit’s nest is definitely not only his bed. Hobbits create nests all over the place. They create special nooks out of common, ordinary (and sometimes forgotten) spaces.
My hobbit has a nest for newspaper reading and a nest for cigar smoking and a nest for sleeping and a nest for cooking and a nest for pondering life and a nest for decompressing at the end of the day with a peanut butter sandwich. These spaces that he routinely visits have become very special little vortexes all over the house. When it comes to his day-to-day, he does love routine. But I’ve been observing my hobbit’s living habits for ten years now and have noticed that he is very good at using the entire house (all the forgotten corners) in a meaningful way. Front porch, back deck, a seating arrangement on the other side of the yard, this corner, that corner … and for that, our house is thankful. Because remember, when your home is happy, it serves you best in supporting your optimum health, prosperity and happiness.
Hobbits understand that all things are “alive”. My hobbit tells our family members all the time to keep our cars clean because if we keep our cars clean, our cars will feel better and therefore run better. If I tell my hobbit that I’m going to go sit at my desk to write, he’ll say “then that will be a very happy desk.” If I tell my hobbit that I’m going to wear my hiking shoes for our walk, he’ll say “then your hiking shoes will be the happiest shoes on the planet!” He says things like this all the time, and we’ll laugh a little or sometimes we give him a side glance, or sometimes even a smirk - but it’s so cool if you stop and think about it. Hobbits understand that all things are “alive” and that all areas of our home need our attention. If we give all the forgotten corners our attention, the gesture will be returned to us tenfold.
Ch’i is the living energy that the ancient Feng Shui principals are based from. Feng Shui practitioners believe that ALL things in the physical world embody this living energy. According to Terah Kathryn Collins, author of “The Western Guide to Feng Shui” a home’s purpose is to totally support and nurture its inhabitants. Collins states, “In Feng Shui, buildings are viewed as dynamic, living “bodies” …. Homes and workplaces are serving their purpose when they are experienced as safe harbors, powerful springboards, comfortable nests, and personal paradises by the inhabitants. Growth and movement produce change and are the dynamic signs of vital, living Ch’i.”
Many of us become stuck in a pattern within our home. I’m talking about our daily traffic patterns. While hobbits do savor the comfort of routine, they also understand the importance of making your entire home feel useful and not getting stuck in the rut of a worn-out pattern. According to the principals of Feng Shui, what’s going on in your home is going on in your life. If you have spaces of your home that are forgotten and unused, let’s give that some thought this week. An unused space will feel dead or stuck. Just like a flowing river is healthier than a pool of stagnant water, moving Ch’i through and around our homes is healthier for us than stuck and stagnant Ch’i.
Over the years, the hobbit and I have had a couple housemates that have been pretty good at using the forgotten corners of our home and when I see someone sitting at a "new" space to do homework or read a book, I have a visceral reaction of relief. I guess I know on some level that the home is happiest when it feels useful.
But I’d have to say that nobody in our home uses the whole house better than Ted the Cat. He is the best when it comes to discovering special little spaces all over the house.
Let’s all take a lesson out of Ted’s book this week and walk through our homes and yards from the perspective of a cat looking for a quiet place to rest and dream. Can you create a new nest today for a routine task that you usually do in the same spot? Carry a chair and a little side table outside to sit under a tree to check your e-mail. Bring a cup of tea and a little jelly jar filled with the wildflowers that are popping up in your yard. That’s what a hobbit would do - and guess what? That mundane e-mail checking suddenly became the most delightful moment of your day. And guess what else? That chair that never gets to go outside will feel so special and happy and when you return it to its indoor spot, it will share that happy energy with the rest of that corner of your home. And just like that, you’ve got your Ch’i flowing. 😉