January Doors: Reflect and Renew

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The month of January is named for the Roman deity Janus—the god of gates and doors, beginnings and endings. Janus was traditionally depicted as facing forwards and backwards at the same time. This symbolism captivates me; I love the thought of January as the doorway to the new year, as a time for reflection on the old year past and for anticipation of the new year to come.

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In ancient Roman homes the two-faced bust of Janus hung over the entryway as a reminder to pause and honor times of transition and change. And though we don’t hang the bust of Janus in our homes today, we can still be mindful of the poetry and symbolism of January. We can pass through every door with a calm and quiet focus.

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We can cultivate a serene and welcoming space full of light, love and peace.

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We can greet the visitors in our lives with a smile and an offer of hospitality—whether their sojurn be short or long, whether they bring us good news or bad.

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We can peer around every corner and marvel at the mysteries just beyond our view.

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We can commit to a moment of study and meditation before jumping headlong into the fray.

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And we can stand strong in the face of the unknown, first acknowledging our fears and then moving forward with courage and determination.

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Of course, our doors and passages are full of excitement and adventure too—so stay tuned for January Doors: Volume Two later today!

Image Credits: 1. James Merrell 2. Marie Claire Maison 3. Twig Hutchinson 4. Paul Massey 5. Paul Massey 6. Gentl and Hyers 7. House Beautiful via Harmony and Home 8. House Beautiful via Harmony and Home

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23 Responses to “January Doors: Reflect and Renew”

  1. Joanna Says:

    What an inspiring post to jump start us into the new year. I love the history lesson, too!

  2. joannagoddard Says:

    oooh so calm and lovely. i like all the naturally muted colors.

  3. milly {elephants & redwoods} Says:

    Thanks for the birthday wishes!! I love those light fixtures in that hallway. C’est Magnifique! HAHA – Just practicing my awful French.

  4. milly {elephants & redwoods} Says:

    Thanks for the birthday wishes!! I love those light fixtures in that hallway. C’est Magnifique! HAHA – Just practicing my awful French.

  5. milly {elephants & redwoods} Says:

    Thanks for the birthday wishes!! I love those light fixtures in that hallway. C’est Magnifique! HAHA – Just practicing my awful French.

  6. Luphia Says:

    this is such a beautiful post, vol II on the way too, you’re really spoiling us anne 😉 i LOVE the 2nd & 3rd doors, so light and refreshing!

  7. vicki archer Says:

    Beautiful post and beautiful images, xv.

  8. Abbey Goes Design Scouting Says:

    I love this post! Beautiful sentiments and I esp. like the bit about courage and determination!

  9. Jenny Says:

    Wonderful 🙂 and great images!

  10. Paloma of La Dolce Vita Says:

    This is such a lovely post.

  11. josephine Says:

    what a lovely post to start the year with! your words will definitely be staying with me as i walk through various doorways throughout the day and probably throughout the year.

  12. Michelle @ My Wedding Report Says:

    I never knew that. I love the last picture. It is like the door is opening to an unknown future. How were your holidays?

  13. Miss Aimee Says:

    I need some calm in my house. Loving the photos!

  14. Leigh Pennebaker Says:

    Thank you so much for this gorgeous post. As always, your pairings of words/thoughts/reflections with beautiful images is inspiring!

  15. stephanie Says:

    What a beautiful post – I love a different way of looking at a common thing, and I love thinking of January as the door to a new year – a place to lokk back and look forward.
    Janus was always one of my favorite gods – it would be killer to design the two faces into a doorframe somehow.

  16. christina Says:

    anne, your posts are so gorgeous and inspiring. thanks for your unique and lovely view.
    happy new year
    xox

  17. Rachel Says:

    Lovely post, calming pictures. Just what’s needed on this Monday.

  18. dwellings and decor Says:

    Great post. I like how you incorporated your words so lovely with the photos. I definitely understand what you say about January and I love the minimal and cozy feel of these gorgeous spaces. So calming.

  19. christina Says:

    Such inspirational words. You really are fantastic. Thanks for giving me a whole new way to look at my new year…and for all the fabulous photos. Happy New Year!

  20. Ladelle Says:

    Anne, I love your blog. What an inspiration you are to me. Thank you for your words and beautiful pictures and recipes. Happy New Year to you and your hubby.

  21. nkp Says:

    Those images are captivating, each in its own quiet way…a truly inspiring post…thanks!

  22. Courtney Says:

    Beautiful words illustrated by beautiful images! January is the perfect time for reflection and renewal, and I think your post welcomed the month brilliantly.

  23. Liz@VioletPosy Says:

    I’d love my house to look like any of those pictures, so calm and refreshing. Great post!

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