A Step Towards My 2019 Goal

Simplicity is not depriving yourself but creating a space for living.

Simplicity seems like a easy thing to do right? Until you begin to trying to achieve it. I thank many of us want to live a life of simplicity but maybe are lost how to get there. Maybe you are looking around wondering where to even begin. Maybe you have a plan but time is your hindrance. I think it is easy to get to those points but we are going to get through this. I admit it is hard letting go of things. However they are just that things. These things take time to keep dusted, they take time to clean and they take up space for living. I am not talking about completely letting everything go and moving to a small space. OH NO I love my stuff don't get me wrong but I do not want my stuff to own me. So maybe you are sitting here reading this and feel the same way and want to join me on this journey... then please do. I am going to write out my process... my thoughts and how I do this. 

Typically I do a clean out every 6 months that corresponds to a local consignment sale. If you have kids and want to make some extra cash then maybe seek out local consignment sales in your area. They all have different requirements on what has to be done. There is a ton of place to sale your things online and even brick and mortar locations in your area. So keep that in mind as you begin sorting. I like to create two piles one to sale and one to donate. 

Now to get started. 
**Do not try to just going through one room without a plan especially if this is something you have not done in a while. There is nothing worse than getting started and loosing hope. 

First you have to have a general idea of what your goals are. For me its to purge as much as possible, get ready for a consignment sale, possible gather stuff to rent a booth in a local pickers brick and mortar store and to clean out the old craft room. The old craft room is bad. It has become a dumping ground for everything. 

Now that you have a purpose you need to sit down and mentally think what order will best suit you. For me I still had Christmas stuff up. During the beginning of the season I had 14 totes of Christmas decorations, that is a lot! That took me about 2-3 days to decorate including the trees. That is not counting the stuff I do at my mother in laws. I felt like this past Christmas I was spending too much time preparing for it that I did not live in it and I wanted that to change! As I took down my Christmas I decided that 6 totes was enough. Those 6 totes do not include ornaments. Each of the big trees have their own totes of ornaments ans well as each child has their own tote of decor/ornament combo. That means we would keep 6 totes of decor for the house, 2 totes of ornaments for the living room/den tree and 2 totes for each kid for a total of 10 totes from the 18 we had. That is still a lot I know but again this doesn't have to be dramatic. A lot of my decor is still in their original boxes in the totes which takes up space. We also have a lot of vintage pieces that require extra padding. However that meant tough choices had to be made and things had to go. 

There are a few questions you need to ask yourself:
1. Do I LOVE it?  - you have to be honest with yourself. Love is a strong word, I am talking about love like "Do I see this being in my home and being put up in 5 years? Passed down? 

2. Does it have an emotional pull at my heart? I know as a parent its hard to let go of every cute thing your kid makes but the reality is that it is the memory that we need and not the object. If you are having a hard time letting go of artwork or creations then take a photo of them. Save them to a file on your computer to look back on. The reality is you will not pull that actual piece out in 5 years, it will get lost and damaged so preserve the memory not the object. 

3. Do you use it? I was not using all my decorations. There was things that I hadn't put out in years so why was I hanging onto them. Why allow them to take up space, to be moved that is just extra work I was creating for myself and taking time away from living... 

4. Is it broken/missing parts? Seems simple right, yea this is a hard one especially for my children. 

So asking myself those questions it either went into a keep, sale or donate box. It was hard I am not going to lie but I know next year when I get out those 6 totes of decor and can get it everything decorated in a day it will be worth it! That will allow for more memories of crafts and fun time spent with what matters my family. 

Next week I began tackling the rest of the house... 

Kicking off 2019 with a BANG!

We are a few days into the new year and already we have had chaos at our house. I have had this cold virus thing since the 28th and it has been one of those wiping you out, walking snot headed, no voice, glass shards in the throat and fever type of colds. It has not been a highlight to the new year that is for sure. However I am on the mend, it ran its course and I had to devour about 8-10 oranges a day and drank ample amounts of hot tea to get me here.

We stayed in doors New Years Eve because we had a lot of rain here in Alabama. The next day we cooked our traditional New Years Day meal which was a Rib-eye Roast, black eyed peas, greens and corn bread. We went with a simple Rosemary Roast this year and used the rosemary that has been growing on my front porch. Its so nice to be able to walk out the front door to fresh herbs. The recipe was a freebie on the Internet and you can find it right here:

So now lets get down to the chaos. This morning I got to clean my fridge and kitchen floor. It was not because I wanted too or because it was dirty because I just had cleaned it when I bought groceries last.  Oh No, today it all got cleaned because as we were getting ready to go out the door to my in laws to clean I told the boys to go make a sandwich to take to Mamaws and Papaws. I am in my room writing some things in my planner and then I hear it. There was screams, glass shattering and things banging. I ran to the kitchen to see my boys standing in front of the fridge with the door open and who knows what on the floor around them. Glass jars were busted and salsa was every where, steak sauce busted, pepper sauce pour on the floor as little peppers lay here and there, blue berries rolling and the Yorkie eating them like a hungry hippo and my two boys standing in the midst of it all. I blinked and took a deep breath. By the grace of God I remained calm.
Its funny really, I really have been focusing on this whole live a simple 2019, to live one with meaning, one with cherished moments and one without regret. I had gotten up that morning and said my prayer to begin my day and knowing it was going to be a harder one because of having to clean the in-laws had asked for patience. God granted me that prayer. It wasn't in the form of a blissful easy going day I was hoping for, it was one in a "you can get through this, just breathe and use this as a teaching moment".

My kids stood there and the wee one spoke first. "I am sorry momma". I looked at the oldest, "Umm what happened?" The oldest was quick to turn on the wee red head. Apparently he was "doing what he was supposed to do" or so he says and the wee one got impatient and decided to SWING and climb on the fridge door while he waited. The red headed one though would not really say what happened. All we could get was "I don't know".

               **** OK lets take a moment to pause right here and sit on this for a moment****
The wee one who will be 8 in February made the choice to grab the fridge door and try to swing on it and climb it. He in that split second thought to himself "hey that seems like a great idea even though I know better and I have never tried something so audacious in my younger years".

So back to the chaos that was unfolding before me:
The red head knew he was in trouble. He finally came clean regarding his actions. The oldest asked to go shower as he was covered in last night dinner and salsa and the red head just stood there like a deer stuck in the headlights of a car. My children are actually pretty good, we have never had anything like this happen before and I knew they knew they made some horrible choices that morning. When he had swung on the door the fridge began to tilt forward or fridge is in a cubby in the wall. I do not think it would have came all the way over. I think it just tipped enough that some things started sliding. I will say they are both lucky they did not get cut with glass from the jars. So for punishment the redhead lost all of his video games for the week. Now being the reasonable parents that we are we did offer another option. He could write 100 times "I will not swing or climb on the fridge". 

Its Friday now and lets just saw he has only written 10 sentences. The amount of times he has asked for his games has been countless. However he has still not gotten back his games. After I got the mess cleaned, the fridge back in order we sat down and looked up a few verses. We talked about how God wants us to obey our parents and why parents must discipline their children. About how God has a plan for us to live the lives he wants us to we have to have self control when it comes to things that can get us in trouble. We finished up with confessing when we do wrong so we can get forgiveness.

I do not see this ever happening again. I am pretty sure the next few days of missed video games is going to be really hard for him as Christmas just brought us a new Pokemon game to play as a family. I hate that the whole thing happened but I am grateful that no one was hurt and that I remained calm and was able to use this as a moment to learn a valuable lesson about why we have rules, why parents have to discipline and what love and forgiveness is.

Bible Verses we covered:
Proverbs 25:28
1 John 1:6 - 1 John 2:8
James 3:2
Ephesians 6:1-4
Nehemiah 9-17