All That Glitters Is Not Gold


I’m in the land of the McMansion……

Small, quaint cottages from the 40’s are torn down, to fill up every square inch of the lot with an enormous house.

The McMansion.

It is interesting to me that there seems to be a correlation between rising anxiety levels and the need for biggering. Bigger homes, bigger cars, bigger bank accounts, bigger jobs and bigger anxiety levels. All the while, we are lessening our time to relax because we must pay for the biggering. Lessening our time to ponder through gardens. Lessening our time to give back to our fellow man. Lessening our time to dream.

We are in a land of biggering…..but all that glitters is not gold.

Studies now show the direct links between spending time in gardens, soil and nature, and mental health. Doctors are beginning to prescribe “nature” therapy instead of just antidepressants. There are actual gardens designed just for natural play and exploration to combat anxiety in children. In fact, The future Queen of England, Kate Middleton, just designed an entire oasis just for this children to explore and engage. Super cool. One simply can’t put a pricetag on mental well-being.

So why do we strive to ‘have’,  instead of ‘how to just be’?

My youngest was amazed by the McMansion. It seemed every block was bigger than the previous. Fewer trees, fewer gardens but bigger and bigger homes. Finally, she simply said “Why would anyone need that big of a house???” I wasn’t sure how to answer.

All I could think of were the countless children being raised without making a mud pie on a kitchen floor.

The McMansions do sparkle…..but not in a way I want. I want my children to watch squirrels chase each other up a large oak tree. I want leaves to rake up and dive into. I want flowers to surround my home and fresh cut peonies to fill the air with aromas that bring me back to my childhood. I want a vase of flowers, picked by my children, to look at on a rainy day. I want my children’s memories to be rooted in nature and play, not just what glitters with a price tag.

I want a small, little bungalow with warm memories of being together. I want trees to shade the afternoon sun as I sit watching the sunset. I want a small reading area to write, as I watch the sunrise. I want a home that is filled with natural moments that are unrushed and peaceful. I want less so I can live more. I don’t want to keep up with the Jones’s, not do I want Pottery Barn to tell me the new color fads for furniture. I want my small home to be filled with family treasures that have been handed down to me. I want my home to be filled with moments that are close to my heart.

All that glitters is not gold, my friends. Take it from me…..when you lose it all, you realize real quick that it’s all just “stuff” anyhow. The real treasure doesn’t have a price tag.