Living with less

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As we go through a family conversation about what we’re doing and how we want to live our lives, my spouse and I are also taking time for our favourite activity: decluttering.

Unfortunately, we’re stalled part-way through the process with piles of cardboard boxes, stacks of stuff, and half-filled give-away boxes all over. We’ve been busy, and I need a push to get to the next stage or I will have a personal melt-down over the mess.

We’ve already made some great progress. Over the past number of months we’ve got rid of bags, piles of clothes, a couple stacks of books (wow … imagine that!), a stack of towels, a box of large-size reusable diapers, and extra/ icky/ cracked dishes. We now have a bunch of things for sale on Castanet or about to be, and the progress is exciting.

Now for the next push. Inspired by this article on what to declutter, here’s what I think I will try to get rid of now:

  • Books I’m not going to read or re-read. I love having some books to pass on or “just in case” I want to look into them, but that’s not good enough anymore.
  • Office supplies we won’t use. For example, I can’t stand mechanical pencils, and we have a stack of them on our counter. Good-bye!
  • Toys. Especially because getting these put away can be hard. Probably less-popular stuffies, and ones that just don’t get pulled out. I did promise our daughter I would involve her in the process … so I’ll try and do that.
  • Things we’ve made. Yes, this is an awful statement on the value of creativity and self-sufficiency, but the mobile our daughter cut out and painted for the solstice will not be around for next year’s events. Or some of my clothing refashions that failed. Or anything else for that matter.
  • Freezer food. And all other food that has been sitting there uneaten. Some of it is edible and will be consumed, the rest is out of there. I’m looking for a clean sweep of our food supplies.
  • Paper. I need to go through our filing cabinet again and chuck or digitize whatever I can.
  • Craft & sewing supplies. If I’m not going to refashion it or use it in the next year, I don’t need to keep it around.
  • Clothes, round 157. I still have clothes in my closet that I don’t wear, and often feel like I don’t have enough clothes. Only ones I wear and love can stay. Repeat after me.

Here’s hoping for a clean, spacious space as spring arrives! Few things energize me more than a lovely space.

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