More than one year ago, Amanda Brooks announced to the fashion world that she was leaving her role as Fashion Director for Barney's New York to move to a farm in England with her family. Escaping from a busy life in New York City, Amanda's days are now full of walks in the fields that surround her farm home, jam-making, horseback riding, tending to carpool obligations and fixing an early family supper to be enjoyed among her rosebushes and pear trees. Recently, she reflected on this transition in a blog post describing some of the fond experiences and thoughts she has cultivated along the way. She says, "I have never been more clear about who I am and what is important to me. There is enough peace and quiet here to listen to myself - my mind and my body."
There was something about her post that really resonated with me. I, too, value the importance of quiet moments that force you to foster this inherent peace and self-reflection and admire her decision to shift gears and try a new way of living. It is so important to learn how to be in tune with what your mind, soul and body are needing and I feel like I learn more about what this means for me, every day. For me, these clear moments often come in nature and can be very refreshing. I hope to never lose sight of them.
I have never been to England (astonishing, yes), but for quite some time have dreampt of taking a trip to the English countryside to truly take in the landscape - a great place for "quiet moments". In conducting research for this prospective quest, I found the National Trust, a UK conservation charity that protects and restores historic places and green spaces, opening them up "for ever, for everyone". Most notably, the organization offers an array of award winning holiday cottages in the UK with names like "Skippers Cabin", "The Dairy Cottage" or "The Chauffeur's Flat" that formerly functioned as shepherd's huts in the Dorset coast, a dame's school in Cornwall, or as a mid 19th century miner's cottage, for example. I can picture quite well days spent hiking throughout the coast, picnicing with a great bottle of wine and a book of poetry and in the evening, enjoying a roaring fire under a blanket with a night cap in hand.