We have owned a cabin home outside of Asheville, NC. for 8 years. In 2013/2014 we lived here (this blog post is being written at the cabin, where we are spending the weekend) for a year. We have always marveled at how it made us feel when we were here. Whether for a quick 2 day escape or, every day for the year we lived here- Nearly always relaxed, yet mentally sharp, calm but full of energy. What we have found over the years is that everyone, and we do mean everyone, who stays at the cabin has essentially identical experiences. We rent our home out and complete strangers write in our guest book. “Even our kids said they have never been so relaxed, while having so much fun.” Another couple said, “We have been staying in homes for vacation for decades and your home is without question the most serene and calming place we have stayed”. Friends, family members, kids, age 13, another kid age 81- they all experience, “my best night of sleep”- they all use the same words, even though many of them have never met each other. Some of these people are city folk, some understand the woods, and it makes no difference. So what is it about this place?
We never could exactly describe the “cabin affect” but we came pretty darn close when we visited the west coast of Costa Rica a few years ago. They have an expression that that means everything from hello, to take it easy, to see ya later. The expression is “pura vida” and the literal translation is pure life. That is it! The cabin takes everyone to a place where they experience a pure life. We immediately named the cabin “Pura Vida”- from the sign at the entrance of the gravel driveway to the one by the front door- Welcome to Pura Vida. You may be thinking it does what it does to people because it forces you to slow down, because it is very rural, some type of escape from reality. We would say that may be a part of it but it is much more powerful than that. The year we lived here we were working at our consulting firm more than full time. It was our most difficult financial year, ever, by far. Payroll, overhead, to say nothing of annoying things like mortgages and sometimes even a car payment were, at times, challenging. We also were traveling extensively and yet every single day when we turned the corner of that driveway, and saw our home the same feelings came over us, every time.
We now understand it goes beyond a “pure life”- the cabin is the perfect host for holistic living. It creates a perfect environment for mind, body and spirit to connect and grow. Even if it is not in your nature to hike, you find yourself walking in the woods. Not just hiking but thinking and seeing and feeling your surroundings. Fresh vegetables and simple meals like turkey chili or homemade pizza just make sense at the cabin. Reading, curled up in front of the fire makes perfect sense. You might think, I don’t have a cabin in the woods, so how can I live the pure life? The answer is build it. Not a log cabin, a sanctuary. A room, a place where you can go and balance mind, body, spirit. We find water features and candles help to create that peaceful something. We have fountains, big small and medium, all over all of our houses. Identify your way to holistic living and make it happen.
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