Showing posts from March, 2015

April challenge

I was inspired by The 30-Day Minimalism Game by The Minimalists for an April challenge. I have challenged my friends Christy, Sonia, and Susan. Christy and Sonia have accepted the challenge. Susan is still considering it... It starts tomorrow. Susan will have to make up her mind by midnight tomorrow. :)

Succeeding would mean getting rid of 465 things in the month. The difference for our version of the challenge, we will consider the items in a donation box or the garbage to be "out of the house", as long as all of those items are literally out of the house by the end of day April 30th.

Let the games begin!

March 2015 recap

I know the month is not quite over yet, but I don't expect that much will change in the next 2 days. So here is my March 2015 recap.

I had given myself three challenges for the third month of the year. Continuing the decluttering, doing a second Whole30, and March was to be a "no buy" month.

I've kept decluttering and have been enjoying it. I did not see my second Whole30 through. And as for the "no buy" month, I bought things. I bought a manicure and food for my niece's birthday. On Friday March 20th, I bought my daughter and myself a night at the nail salon where we got our first ever manicure and pedicure. (Looks like she has an ingrown toenail as a result :( We need to get that checked out by the doctor.) Then I took her out for supper. And on March 22nd, I bought an ebook for $3.33 (Minimalist: A Minimalism Guide for Decluttering Your Life and Living a Wonderfully Simple Lifestyle by Kelly Ann Callahan). Although I did spend money on "unnecess…

Reflections on romantic relationships

You might be wondering what romantic relationships have to do with minimalism. Let me explain what I've been thinking about.

Today I re-read my life plan that I wrote a little while ago. I haven't printed it yet like I said that I would because I feel like I still have to work at it a little. But as I was reading it, there was a part of it that stood out as "off".

What I read that inspired me to write out my life plan suggested that when you go through the process, you write in as much details as you want/can. Dream big. Write out your dream life. Whether it's actually possible or not. Where you live, what you do, what things/people are part of your life, what experiences, basically everything. When I wrote about what my home is (will be) like, I wrote about who I would be sharing it with. Obviously, my daughter made the cut. :)  But I had also added "my spouse" (which in my mind could just as well mean a boyfriend). When I wrote that in, it felt odd to…

Buh-bye! I won't even miss you!

Aaaaaaaaah! This week, a friend of mine came to pick up my kitchen cast offs, a computer chair, a Bluetooth speaker, and an old kitchen table. I have no regrets! Slowly but surely, things are changing in my home. I'm getting rid of the clutter. I thought I'd feel more relieved, but the change doesn't feel as significant as I thought it would. I have a few empty shelves in my kitchen cupboards, but I want to get rid of more things. In due time I guess.

I have plans to get rid of my current dinning room table and a few other plates. But I can't really get rid of those things until my mom moves out because she likes to invite my sister and her family to supper once in a while. Without the kitchen table, those suppers would be a little uncomfortable. So... patience.

Things I've been contemplating during this process:
The common advice you can read on many minimalism blogs is that for every item you bring in you get rid of one item. Therefore, it's quite possible to…


Well, I was making good progress yesterday with my kitchen. However, going downstairs this morning to start off the day, I fell down the stairs. I really hurt myself. I can barely walk. I have a few bruises on one arm, scratched up on the other arm, and I really hurt my buttocks. Sitting hurts. Getting up from sitting hurts. Bending over to pick something up hurts.

Sooooo... I really didn't do much today. I did a bit of filing. Shredded many old bills and financial statements. And I filed my taxes. So I'm happy with what I did do, but I wish I could have done more.

My daughter had to help me get dressed. She helped me put on one of my socks and my pants, and my boots. I needed to get dressed to go pick up my mom. Once I got into the car and started driving, I was regretting not telling my mom that she should have taken the bus.

I'm a little afraid of the pain I will probably feel tomorrow morning. I expect to feel stiffer than I did today. I'm very thankful that I di…

Streamlining Saturday

Today, I was able to make good progress on my decluttering. I spent all day in my kitchen going through all of the cupboards. I'd pick one, take everything out, wipe it down inside and out, and then put back only the items I wanted to keep. I found things that I had completely forgot I had. So obviously, those went to the donation pile. Here is a photo of the things I got rid of from the kitchen.

I was actually planning on spending only 1.5 hours on my kitchen today. I wanted to also do some filing, and tax filing, digitize photos, and help my daughter sort through her clothes. But once I got into clearing out the kitchen, I didn't want to stop. I'm still not done though. I haven't gone through my pantry and kitchen island. I was working a little, then sitting and contemplating a little. I wasn't in a hurry today. I needed rest, but I also wanted to get this done. So I took my time.

I'm happy with what I've accomplished. I will finish up tomorrow, and if I…

The organge brush

It just occurred to me today while I was reading minimalism testimonials online on the Miss Minimalist website that my dad was a minimalist. My mom isn't, but my dad was.

My dad passed away 5 months ago on October 11, 2014. The day after his 64th birthday. It's still very recent and very difficult to accept that I can't see him, hug him or hear him anymore. My father's voice was so sweet to me. He didn't give himself enough credit for the incredible man that he was. But maybe his modesty added to his greatness. 
Anyway, my dad didn't have or want many things. Growing up, I saw my dad use the exact same orange hair brush every day, and the same green plastic glass whenever he wanted to drink pop. My sister and I joked that those two items would be our inheritance. This was years before he got sick with COPD. 
He was hard to shop for when it came to birthday and Christmas presents. He didn't have many regular hobbies. Life for him was all about family. We'…

Day done

Well, my 2nd Whole30 turned out to be a Whole8. I gave in to my cravings today. Not quite sure how I feel about it.

I'm still doing the purging stuff thing and the "no buy" March thing.

I wasn't feeling well today and ended up staying home. I slept most of the day. Still feeling a little off.

Day 8 - Mrs. Grumpikins resurfaces

Grumpy. Moody. Frustrated. Stuck to it anyway. Cleaned out my bathroom like I said I would. Didn't have much to get rid of. Found more body wash. My daughter and I have 7 or 8 bottles of body wash and 3 bars of soap total to go through before I can buy any more. Maybe I won't need to buy any until 2016...

Day 7 - Temptation

Today, I took my niece out for her birthday outing. I've been doing this for the past few years. I never know what to get her, and I like when we hang out together. We don't get to do it enough. So we make an afternoon of it. This year, she chose to get a manicure. So I picked her up before lunch and headed to the nail salon.

We then wanted to have something for lunch and didn't want to head back home just yet. I tried to think of a whole30 friendly restaurant in Aylmer. Couldn't think of one. So we went to the grocery store to find compliant food to have on the go. She has a peanut and nut allergy. And I'm on a whole30. Choices are limited.

We did manage to find a weird combination of things (olives, green beans, prosciutto, mixed berries, juice made in store, and she wanted macaroni salad) and off we went. (I know that on whole30 we're not supposed to have juice, but I felt ok with this one because of the ingredients (mine was made with only kale, spinach, pi…

Day 4, 5, and 6 - A little progress

Day 4 - nothing significant to say. Still super hungry, but still eating whole30. Kind of grumpy today.

Day 5 - nothing significant to say for this day either. The hunger has calmed down a bit though. And not as grumpy as yesterday. 
Day 6 - When I went to the linen closet to grab a face cloth for my morning shower, I was greeted by a well-organized space containing just enough stuff. It made me so happy! I actually reopened the door after shutting it the first time to take a second look. As if it was too good to be true. But it was true!!! 
Tonight, a colleague of mine came to pick up a dresser and a bookcase that I offered him. Turns out that one of his daughters (he is a single dad of four kids) needed a new one. And I'm more than happy to be rid of those pieces. He wrote back later on in the evening and thanked me again saying that his daughter was really happy to get the dresser. Excellent! :)

Things are slowly coming along. I can be somewhat impatient and would like for things…

Day 3 - Just in case

All my meals were fantastic today! But I felt like I could keep eating forever. I had protein, I had fats, but I still couldn't get enough food! I'm not hungry, but I could still eat!

I finished my linen closet tonight. My first instinct with almost everything I looked at was "I should keep this just in case". But you know what, I've been keeping all of these things just in case for years and haven't touched them. Pairs of curtains, perfectly good towels, sheet sets, buttons, sewing accessories, different colour thread... Some of the sewing accessories belonged to my paternal grand-mother who was an awesome seamstress and who passed away when I was in my early twenties. I've NEVER used any of it! And I'm now 40 years old.

So I'm letting it go. It's difficult, because it feels like a betrayal not to use the things she gave me. Man! stuff can really have a weird effect on us! It's not like I can bring any of this stuff with me when it's …

Day 2 - Calming the tantrum inside

OK, today was tough! All I could think of was the food that I couldn't have. I wanted to quit already. I regretted posting in my blog and telling people that I was going to do another Whole30. I should just learn to shut up! I thought to myself.

And then at home, there was left over banana cake with chocolate frosting... one of my favourite types of cake! I turned to my mom and told her I wanted a piece. She said "well have one!" To which I replied, "well then I will have failed" "Failed who?" "Myself!" She shrugged in response. As if she doesn't get why I'm challenging myself like this. I resisted.          ...Huh! Kind of cool that I didn't give in...

I had scheduled an hour to clean out my linen closet. I only did 15 minutes. But it made a huge difference already. I knew for sure that I was getting rid of two sheet sets that I'm giving to my sister, 6 bath towels, 6 hand towels, a blanket, a couple of terry cloth bath mats…

Day 1 - Commitment reaffirmed!

This weekend was a busy weekend. On Saturday, I helped my mom with the remaining things she had at her old apartment. It was the final day of her lease. Well, the fact that she still had stuff left over there and the stuff was totally unnecessary in my opinion just helped me reaffirm my commitment to decluttering. Not that I was wavering at all. But I really don't want to go through what I went through for my last two moves. They both actually lasted about three days! Ugh!! That is NOT going to happen for my next one.

We came back from Aylmer with my 7-year-old nephew who wanted to come sleep over. I ran errands and cleaned up the garage a little to make room for my mother's things that we just brought over.

Sunday was food day. I prepped two different types of meatballs and made chicken wings (those were for tonight's supper). I ran out of time to cook the chicken breasts I wanted to. I also wanted to make soup, but I over cooked the chicken wings and ended up running ou…