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The Gift of an Ordinary Day

August 10, 2011

My Mom had a book lying around the house a few years back called The Gift of an Ordinary Day. I couldn’t have read more than the back cover, but that title has always stuck with me. I had it on my mind yesterday as I went through my day, checking little things off my to-do list, sort of going through the motions yet present at the same time.

{A leisure morning of reading and work. Sizzling eggs and bacon; some cool coffee to wash it down. A bike ride. Catching up with my roommate while we made lunch side by side. Pedaling up the hill to work. Cruising back down for an evening to myself. A comforting dinner. An ordinary day. }

I was racking my brain for a post topic all day. Nothing I ate was noteworthy. I didn’t hike. No crafts or anything inspiring to take pictures of. I was stumped, and a little frustrated with myself. It’s like it hit me with a ton of bricks… my life is average.

That’s also when that book title popped into my head. And ideas began swirling. It’s funny how these creative moments are born. How they manifest out of nowhere or a seemingly insignificant moment of your past; a title of a book you never read.

A friend also recently told me a realization she had a while back; a good portion of life is pretty average. She said that once she came to accept this reality, everything sort of felt right.

The leisure mornings with warm coffee and a book suddenly became something to look forward to instead of a time thought as wasted. That comfort meal that’s been made a million times was no longer a food rut but rather a meal that held memories of home and family deep in its cheesy goodness.

My day-to-day life is pretty average. I like my coffee a certain way, my eggs not too runny, the same bike route, and catching up with my roommate about ordinary stuff.

Of course taking risks makes me feel alive. But I think you can take risks and live a simple, ordinary life at the same time. Its about finding meaning in those simple moments and piecing them together until they mean something way bigger.  The light that pours through my bedroom at 7pm and the infectious laughs of my friends radiating down the street is sometimes all I need as a reminder that an ordinary day is a gift. 

Not everyday is something to write blog about, and that’s alright with me.

You see, when I have children and need to be in ten places at once, I know I’ll look back on these moments and be thankful I was present. That I appreciated the slow days and the little things. And hopefully I’ll be digging some meaning out of those countless loads of laundry and tenth casserole dinner I’ll be making that month. It might be buried deep in that cheesy goodness, but I know it’ll be there.

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What’s something in your daily routine that you find meaning in? Are you inspired by small things in your everyday life?

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15 Comments leave one →
  1. Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance permalink
    August 10, 2011 8:09 am

    It always is very interesting how creativity creeps up on us sometimes. I bet while you were thinking of post topics you never even imagined that you would post about just that– thinking of post topics! haha

    I try my best to be inspired by the small and “average” things in my every day life. It is the consistency of it all that makes life so beautiful.

  2. August 10, 2011 10:18 am

    I love waking up every morning and making myself a nice cup of tea. Always black tea. Always a heaping spoonful of honey. Always milky. I love it! It’s an ordinary part of my routine that I always look forward to. I also love getting into bed every night with my fiance. I read my Kindle, he usually watches TV or reads as well, and our kitten moves back and forth between the two of us. These are the types of things that are so easy to take advantage of, but if they were to be taken away from me, I would be truly devastated. I’m happy you wrote this post today, because my little cousins are coming over later, and they want to bake something with me. I’m going to really appreciate their presence in my life, and see the day as more than just an ordinary event, but as something I should be grateful for. One of my biggest goals right now is to be more thankful for what I have. We should all take more solace in the ordinariness of our average lives!

    • Katie permalink*
      August 10, 2011 5:13 pm

      I loved this comment, that’s what it’s all about really- finding meaning out of ordinary things. I hope you have a nice afternoon with your cousins!

  3. spoonfulofsugarfree permalink
    August 10, 2011 10:37 am

    This is truly a wonderful post, Katie. I am going to have to check out that book!

  4. MoM permalink
    August 10, 2011 1:07 pm

    I love,love my Katie girl!!
    I look forward to your blog everyday and it brightens my busy , but ordinary day. It makes me feel like you are right here having coffee with me! and inspires me!
    I love your DIY canopy>>> do you remember when we tried to hang one in your room at home>>> it was more of a mosquito net and didn’t really fit but it was cool! haha!

  5. August 10, 2011 1:59 pm

    Not sure what I enjoy more, this post or that empty growler next to your bestand! 🙂

    • Katie permalink*
      August 10, 2011 5:15 pm

      Hahahah, its actually an older picture and since then that growler has become a hanging vase in my bedroom… a bit more classier!

      • August 10, 2011 6:52 pm

        Ah, that’s very creative! I think the most creative my roommates and I got with our left over wine bottles was sticking fake flowers in them for Fall Family Weekend! Left over bottles= wonderful vases.

  6. August 10, 2011 5:59 pm

    We are very alike in this respect. I find comfort in my daily routine; and the “me” time that I’m able to have. I too know that one day i will look back at these evenings I have to myself and think….sheesh! What a life!

    My favourite routine part of my day = making my breakfast, reading blogs, and drinking coffee. for 30 mins, or so.

    Imagine doing that with kids running around? I cant.

  7. August 10, 2011 6:56 pm

    So true!! I don’t think I spend enough time really savoring the low key, average days. I find meaning in my daily cup of tea or coffee. I sit down and just think while I slowly sip. Any work that I have to do follows that. It’s nice to just relax and just be (with my cuppa tea!)

  8. August 10, 2011 10:07 pm

    Katie, I love this post! This is something I am struggling with SO much right now. With my husband gone, I find that I have a lot of time to myself. I am typically going a million miles a minute and when I have an “ordinary day” I go nuts. I have trouble being still, and I think it is a discipline I need to cultivate.My daily runs are probably my routine moments but I am rarely mindful during this time. I think I need to soak in the ordinary far more often. 🙂

  9. August 11, 2011 12:40 am

    oh amazing photos katie!! you definitely have an eye for light – which is seriously the most important thing in photography. my roommate tells me that 50% of what i talk about has to do with light and how it fills a space haha.

    i love stretching as a part of my daily routine. it works wonders for my body like nothing . i also love it when i can stand outside for just a moment and feel the sun shining on my face =)

    • Katie permalink*
      August 11, 2011 8:25 am

      Although I think these pictures with the lens flare are ‘technically’ not good photography, but I love the artistic look it lends to the pictures. Am I right in that your supposed to avoid lens flare usually? The warm sun on my face after a day spent inside- another little moment I love, thanks for the reminder 🙂

  10. August 11, 2011 8:53 am

    I am always inspired by the small things. They ARE what the stuff of life is made of. Not the big once a year things or expensive things or complicated things…it’s the PB & J sandwiches, messy hair, doing laundry, wiping noses, etc etc…that is life. That is what I cherish 🙂

  11. August 14, 2011 2:15 pm

    Coffee, books, and quiet mornings are definitely extraordinary! 😉

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