Showing posts from May, 2024

12 Ways to Redecorate Your House with What You Already Have

There's something rewarding about freshening a room or making an item that's been ignored noticeable once again.  Parts of life can be a bit repetitious, and small changes can liven things up. You don't have to plan a shopping spree to redo your home.  For the most part, you can give yourself a new view with what you already own. A new view For many years, I was one of those people who can't pass up a HomeGoods, Hobby Lobby, or even the Target pillow or lamp aisles.  I regularly visited antique stores within a 50-mile radius.  I shopped at craft fairs and quilt shows.  And I kept my husband busy painting, wallpapering, landscaping, installing windows and a French door... and more. All of this greatly contributed to the five-figure credit card debt we had back in 2012.  And none of it added to my satisfaction, because I was never satisfied.  There was always something else the house "needed." I still like a pretty house.  But my ideas about what's required

Beware the Drawbacks of Minimalism!

What is life as a minimalist really like?  I write all the time about the benefits of minimalism, and why less is more should be your mantra for life.  And everything I've said is true, but maybe it's my duty to point out a few of the negatives.  After all, there are downsides to almost everything.  It won't all be roses.  Minimalism is freedom.  It's clarity.  It's energy, time, and resources to spend on what you believe is important, rather than wasting your life trying to be the person with the most toys. But opinions about minimalists are often mistaken and uncomplimentary.  Along with some necessary lifestyle adjustments, these opinions represent the thorns among the roses. Consider yourself warned. 17 changes and conjectures to beware 1.  A well-known regular You're going to get to know local charities, consignment stores, and maybe the dump too well as you clear out your clutter. 2.  So much time As a minimalist, you'll have to figure out what to do

Minimalism Isn't Magic (but it can help change your life)

Want to change your life?  Minimalism can help.  A lot.  But you're the one who will do the work.  Don't get me wrong – minimalism can do amazing things for you.  It can help you get more control of the scattered pieces of your life.  It can help you find more time for what really matters, and more money for the things you really care about.  Minimalism can help you save your energy and focus for your most important goals. But this isn't a process that happens overnight.  Simply getting rid of your clutter won't make it happen .  Minimalism isn't a magic cure for everything that's out of whack. 4 truths about minimalism 1.  Are you overwhelmed by all the stuff in your house? Houses don't declutter themselves.  Minimalism can guide you as you reduce the chaos, but you have to do the work.  In fact, continually reading about decluttering could keep you from getting started decluttering! So start today.  Right now.  Take five minutes and do one of these declut

On Accepting Gifts with Grace and Joy

Mother's Day is on the horizon, and it's an obligatory gift-giving occasion in the U.S. I've gone through a long period of not giving gifts at all, except to my grandsons and for new babies and marriages.  I always pick something from the new parents' or couple's registry, because I don't want to give anything that would burden the receiver.  After seeing many people who struggle to declutter gifts that they don't like or use, plus the guilt and the arguments that sometimes ensue, I don't want to potentially add something that would fall into that category. So I send greeting cards, and if I do give a gift, I limit it to impermanent things like flowers, food, or a gift card. I also avoid accumulating unnecessary items, so family and friends know not to buy me anything for special occasions.  Sometimes they give me some nice chocolate, a scented hand lotion, or a special tea blend, but most often I'm happy when they give a gift in my honor to one of t

A Time for Everything

I had emergency abdominal surgery at the end of February, and I spent a good part of March at home, in pain, relying on my dear husband Jon for help to do nearly everything.  The idea for this post came out of that experience. That's because I had a huge burst of ideas and writing inspiration in January.  I couldn't explain why I was creating so much, but I was amazed and humbled by all the ideas and the desire and energy to express them.  The unexpected result was that I was able to rest and recover while all of that previously written material was auto-published by my blog platform.  For weeks I only wrote a sentence (or maybe a few) daily, as is my habit, even though the surgery sapped my ability to do almost everything. Our go-go-go expectations hurt us.  We measure worth for others, and for ourselves, by what we produce.  That's our culture.  We pay lip service to the idea that everyone has value, including the infirm and the differently-abled, but that's not how w

How a Hospital Stay Made Me Even Happier to Be a Minimalist

I had unexpected surgery at the end of February, and as a result, I appreciated the benefits of minimalism even more than I usually do. Sickness, injury, or long-term infirmity offer even more reasons to simplify and streamline what you own.  When you can't personally keep up with chores, and rely on someone else for physical care plus help around the house, it's even more important to own less of what you don't need! The prescription: minimalism All of those little maintenance jobs such as making the bed, keeping up with mail and laundry, stocking and cleaning the kitchen, and putting things away after use become so much harder when you're feeling weak and lousy.  Yet when we don't manage these things, home can very quickly become cluttered and even dirty.  And that will add to your feelings of being stuck, with your personal space spiraling out of your control.  Soon, you may feel even less able to cope with your needs, and may even experience depression. Many of