Tag Archives: downsizing

Downsizing All Year Round

Downsizing All Year Round

Perhaps it’s the New Year, or coming off the end-of-year spending. Whatever the case, I’m feeling a major downsizing itch. Once I start seeing all the things I do not really need, the list seems to grow exponentially. And while I have found it is fairly easy to start parsing out things to get out of the house, it’s not always so easy to determine where they should go next. Are they something I should try to resell? Or give away? If so, where? I try desperately to keep trash and recycling as an absolute last resort, even when things seem beyond repair (thank you heavy trash). Since I do not think our crib can hold any more items in giveaway limbo, I decided to rein it in and extend the pleasure of purging. My plan is to simply do away with one item/group of items every week or so.

Last week I decided it was time to part ways with my textbooks from graduate school and a couple of Ben’s from undergrad. I was foolishly optimistic that I could sell more than a few. I sold two. Then after reaching out on Facebook, I decided to skip any extra effort and simply take the remaining stack to Half Price Books. After 15 minutes I walked away with $2 and an empty bag. I’ve learned that decisiveness is essential to actually getting things gone, so I ignored my instinct to further research.

Well, that’s done – now just 51 more things/weeks to go.

Do you struggle to get things out of your house? Where are your favorite second homes for all your stuff?

The (More) Perfect Closet

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I have been working towards that perfect closet. A season of no shopping certainly helped. Instead of perusing things online, I spent time taking things out of my little reach-in closet.

Over the past few months, I have made use of Leila’s empty crib to hold the things I no longer wanted, or was pretty sure I no longer wanted. The longer they spent time in the fashion purgatory, the less I hesitated on letting them go on to someone else’s closet.

I’ve whittled down my collection and pulled out an even smaller capsule wardrobe from there.

For the most part I am sticking to 7 pairs of shoes, 5 bottoms (jeans/overalls/shorts/skirts), 15 tops, 4 cardigans, 7 dresses, 2 jumpsuits and 2 jackets, though I continue to pare everything down until there is not much more than “the capsule” remaining.

I have come to learn that the less I own, the less I want. And the less I shop, the more I enjoy what I have.

I am being honest about what I actually need in my current life and what I do not (goodbye professional slacks, irregardless of how flattering you might be). And acknowledging that less (yoga clothes) is enough, even if it requires more frequent laundry.

I am taking fashion notes from my toddler and bringing my dresses back to playtime and being (less) fearless in embracing my sense of fashion.

I am honing my personal style and learning to recognize it when I see it. If I put something on and it feels uncomfortable or unflattering or I just want to take it back off, I do. And then I toss it in the trash crib.

A smaller closet is just as gloriously wonderful has I imagined!

The Battle Against the Junk Room

The beauty of living in a small house is there is only room for what you need. Ideally. I need a really exceptionally tiny home to squeeze out the excess. In the meantime, I will continue to wage war against the junk room. When we first moved into our home, 8 ½ years ago, we had two – a guest room and a game room. A bed in the former and a foosball table in the latter served as meager placeholders for their true purpose, purgatory for our stuff. Over the years, we’ve downsized and downsized again. We turned the guest room into an office into a nursery. The spare room with no purpose went from an unused den to an unused game room to an office, cluttered but useful. And this past weekend I won a small battle against the constant barrage of missing, misplaced and meaningless things threatening to condemn our useful office into a wasteland.

Here is my secret. I wait. I wait until I absolutely cannot stand it anymore, until I would rather throw away every last thing without a second thought than look at it for one more second. Then I start.

I might win this war yet. I should probably find a place for that pillow propped up on the windowsill first though.