Friday, November 21, 2014

All the things

I've been a bit overwhelmed lately, mostly (totally) my own doing.  I like to have all my Christmas baking done by early December which means I generally start before Halloween. Crutches slowed me down by a week.  Then I have normal baking (a batch a buns almost weekly for Matt's lunch, suppers, lunches, desserts for now (because everyone needs those), getting ahead on some Thanksgiving things).  I spend a good amount of time in the kitchen which was all well and good until my child became obsessed with "helping".  His current favorite ways to "help" are stabbing apples in the fruit bowl with a flipper, pulling pictures & magnets off the fridge, and turning the mixer on high when I least expect it.  This has led a lot of frustrations in the kitchen and to me needing to feel productive while Luke's awake since a lot of my baking is now done while he's asleep.

That has led to massive cleaning, simplifying, and purging of material things (mostly clothes).  Luke really likes playing in his room right after nap time and so to let him do that I've started cleaning out my dresser, closet, and shelves.  We've done 2 garage sales in the last 18 months but I am still amazed at the number of things I can find to get rid of.  I went through my clothes 6 (!!!) days in a row and every day I found more, enough to fill a large garbage bag.

This isn't too new.  I like getting rid of things, simplifying, figuring out I can easily live with less.  Both times my sisters and I have had a sale we've said we didn't think we'd find enough for another for at least 2 years.  But here it is 6 months later and I already have quite the pile going in the basement.  How do we have so much stuff, especially that has survived many prior purges?  It's mind blowing.

This latest cycle I've been focusing not just on things we don't use or don't like, but what we really, reasonably need.  For instance: we do laundry every other Monday.  So it seems that I should be fine with about 18 pairs of underwear and socks, right?  One a day plus a few extras.  Then why do I have 30+ pairs of underwear???  I didn't get rid of much of that because nobody has business buying used underwear but some socks did make the "get rid of pile".  I had some 20 t-shirts taking up space in a drawer even though the only time in the last...15 years I've worn a t-shirt every single day is when I was recently on crutches.  Lots of those were pulled out.  I mostly wear my skinny jeans but still had 5 pairs of flares...a few of those didn't make the cut.  I pull out the same clothes most of the time so why so many more??

I applied the same thing to the kitchen (did we really need the additional big and small plates in a different pattern when we very rarely make it through all of our everyday ones as it is??  No.  Two 9-10in frying pans when we probably have only used both at the same time once?  No.).  How many spatulas can I really use between washings?  A few maybe but even then I usually do dishes right away when baking.  Things we don't use but had stuck around for sentimental reasons were mostly gone.  It's so freeing and exciting to have empty space in our dish/cup cupboard.  The kitchen utensil drawer opens now instead of getting jammed most of the time. My dresser drawers open easier and I have a lot more shelf space in our closet.  I'm excited to get down the Christmas decoration boxes because that'll be a new thing to go through and purge.

It's so freeing to realize you can live with less.  

Luke's admiring my color guard outfit from freshman year of high school.  He kept petting it and saying "pretty pretty".  That is still in my closet, proof I don't get rid of everything.  I am still, probably overly, sentimental.  I'm working on that.  The excitement I get from having less is good motivation.  I recommend it. 


Lauren said...

Haha oh my!!! I remember those lovely gold sequins... with the white hammer pants, right? Hahaha. At least Luke appreciates them! I also have my letter jacket. It's still a really nice warm coat... I just never wear it!

Erin Heckber said...

I was thinking the same thing about the socks, underwear and t-shirts. Why do I have a drawer full of each when I do laundry one a week? I rarely wear more then 5 t-shirts a week. I am really thinking about why do we have what we have and do we use it. My pile is building for garage sale 2015!

diana said...

Lauren - Yes...I have the pants too. They are shiny and would be great for a unicorn costume if they still fit!
E - Yes! I've been getting rid of lots of those (besides underwear). DD and I frequently discuss our growing garage sale piles!