Let’s Share What We Learned in April

It’s the end April and that means it’s time to share what we’ve learned. If you’re new around here, this is a regular practice we engage in together, as we are learning the value of looking back before moving forward. We’re all at different spots on the journey, and these end of the month posts are a way to reflect, share, and celebrate on purpose – the fascinating, ridiculous, sacred and small.what we learned april 2015

This month I’m sharing six fun things I learned in April in no particular order:

1. Portland has a thing about carpet.

I visited the Portland, Oregon for the first time in April. Before I arrived, I had read about the 1980s carpet in the airport that has become an beloved icon by many – with its own Facebook page and active hashtag.

The old, loved carpet is on the left. The new, despised carpet is on the right.
The old, loved carpet is on the left. The new, despised carpet is on the right.

I also saw the carpet that’s replacing it that is evidently ugly and terrible and the worst thing that has ever happened. This was all very new and interesting to me.

2. Four day old kittens are no joke.


Growing up when our outside cats had kittens, they would hide them away in the deep darkness of our shed so we never saw them until their eyes were opened. But my sister’s cat had four kittens this month inside her house. And so we made a special trip down to visit them, hold them, and die. Because look.

3. Pink makes me happy.

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I’ve always known I like pink but I’ve never let myself indulge. It felt too . . . something. But then I saw this chair at World Market (our local store is closing so everything is on sale) and I went back three times before I bought the last one. Now I want it in every room in my house. Pink!

4. Chatting at the Sky readers feel strongly about their books.

Last week I posted about the 10 best books I’ve never read and had the most comments on that post I’ve had all year – lots of conversation about our beloved books. It made me so happy!

5. It’s important to watch TV with your people even if you have a lot of work to do.

A lot of deadlines have come at me this month and, more than ever, I’ve been tempted to lock myself in my office and not come out until all the lists are checked off. But if I’ve learned anything over the past five years of writing books, it’s that for me, evening times are best spent wasting time with my people, which is actually the opposite of waste.

6. I am a Cozy Minimalist (and you probably are too).

Over the past four weeks I took part in my sister The Nester’s online Cozy Minimalist course. I paid full price for it ($89) (she got mad at me when she realized I paid for it because she said she would have let me do it for free)(sister perks). I watched all four videos, doing my best to apply her advice, instructions, and universal decorating truths to my own room.

Of all the people on the planet who should benefit the least from this course it should be me – the sister of The Nester. After all, I’ve heard her say this stuff for years, years I tell you.

But as she and Megan walked through not just what Cozy Minimalism is but why Cozy Minimalism works, something clicked. I took pages and pages of notes. I finally feel like I understand why my gallery walls don’t look right and why my pillows aren’t working.

She didn’t just give nebulous ideas, she gave formulas, practical application, and ideas that will work for any room. I chose my sunroom office to focus on during the class, a room I knew was all wrong on every level but I didn’t have the energy or motivation to make it right.

For example, here’s my sunroom office before the class.

office before 1

And here is my office after the class.



Before the class:

office before 2

And after the class:

office after 2

One last time.

All together now . . .

Before the class:office before 3
And after the class:sunroom afterListen, you must know I don’t talk about things unless I love the things. And this course is one of my favorite things I’ve done for myself.

I already felt like I had some confidence in decorating (as evidenced in other parts of my house I promise), but this course took it to the next level for me – something about hearing it all at once from a woman a know, love, and trust.

Nester is now offering that same course I took but in a self-study version for only $39. But if you enter “Emily Freeman” at checkout as the one who referred you, then you’ll get it for only $29. You’re gonna love this.

Go here to sign up, enter my name, and start creating the home you’ve always wanted. Then one thing you learn in May can be that you, too, are a Cozy Minimalist!

I learned some other things in April, more soul-level things, but a lot of that is still percolating within me. I’m sure you’ll see evidence of that come out in my writing as that’s what always happens when our souls are poked awake in certain areas. For now, it’s time for you to share what you learned in April. Link up below (if you have a blog) or share in the comments.