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Welcome to the
Cozy Cottage Chronicles!

So kiss a little longer

Laugh a little longer / Stay close a little longer

Longer with Big Red

That Big Red freshness / lasts right through it

Your fresh breath goes on and on

While you chew it!

Say goodbye a little longer / Make it last a little longer

Give your breath long lasting freshness

with Big Red!

Big Red commercial jingle, used 1977-1998; written by Peter Cofield

art galleryWhile reading Rob Walker's book, The Art of Noticing, I was astounded to learn that, according to a study by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the average patron spend a median of seventeen seconds in front of any given painting.

Seventeen seconds.

I'd be curious to know what percentage of those seventeen seconds might include looking at the painting through a phone in order to take a picture, or properly centering the painting over our shoulder in order to take a selfie—of us not looking at a great painting

Years ago, when Van Gogh's trio of Bedroom paintings visited the Art Institute of Chicago, we took our family. I remember my husband and I giggling at the spectacle of hundreds of people pressing in to get a close-up view of the paintings, only to see them immediately turn their back to it to snap a selfie. And yes, I fully realize that my husband and I were ignoring the beautiful paintings ourselves in order to look at other people ignoring said paintings. Maybe that's even worse!

But it's just one example of why Walker's book is so necessary these days: The book's subtitle is 131 Ways to Spark Creativity, Find Inspiration, and Discover Joy in the Everyday. Walker comes up with fun, game-like ways to not just look, but see the world around you. And a lot of it means just slowing down.

How many commercials do we watch on TV or YouTube, many of them clocking in at a whopping 30 seconds, 13 whole seconds more than we give to masterpieces? As a child of the 80s, the Big Red gum commercial jingle was so catchy that I can still sing it to this day. And even though it was mostly about cinnamon gum (and, well, kissing), the message was so much more. Take a little longer. Go a little slower. Linger. Notice. See.





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Thank you for subscribing to my newsletter, "The Cozy Cottage Chronicles." I hope that over time I can send you love letters that reflect the incredible journey our family has experienced by downsizing to a much smaller house, the Cozy Cottage. Every day, I'm still looking to simplify our lives, reduce stress, eliminate debt, and leave space in our lives to enjoy the little things. I'd love to hear from you! Just hit "reply" and send me a note!

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