Longing For Simplicity


I’m not sure what’s going on: disillusionment with politics, a distaste for materialism, or a simple mid-life crisis kind of deal.  Whatever is it, I’m not happy with my life-choices at the moment.  I totally understand the allure of those tiny houses.  To ditch almost everything and focus on what really matters – that’s an amazing opportunity.


I’ve never felt like we collected a ton of stuff.  Stuff accumulates, sure, because I’m really bad about getting rid of things that don’t work for us.  I like a clean, minimalist house anyway, but we keep floating further and further away from that.  That’s changing.  Call it spring cleaning, whatever.  Right now I’m in the middle of a purge.

Toys we haven’t played with in months?  Getting rid of them.  Little broken bits of goodness knows what that I intended to fix?  Trashing/recycling it.  That massive pile of jeans with holes in the knees?  I’m finally breaking them down into something I can up-cycle (braided rug out of strips.  Because a quilt is just never going to happen.)   Knickknacks that have no other reason to exist than decoration?  Yeah, sending those off to the thrift store for someone else to treasure.


I guess I have itchy feet too, because I want to move.  For the last few years, this house and neighborhood doesn’t feel like a good fit.  I want less – less cost, less things to clean, less upkeep – with more outside.   My priorities have shifted in a dramatic way.


But most of all, I want a better attitude.  I’m not big on materialism, but I’m bombarded every day with it.  My kids are too.  I’m not happy with the American dream that keeps families scrambling to pay for everything they feel like they have to have.  Do we really need it all?  Do our kids really need it all?  Of course not!  But we all think we do – and we often feel depressed if we can’t get that newest shiny bauble, or the house of our dreams, or whatever is the latest “in” thing.


Here’s what I really want:

To feel like we can go to the beach as a family without worrying so much about finances.

To be able to help others without worrying about the next surprise medical bill.

To have less stress and more peace.

To have neighbors who don’t view competing as their reason for existence.

To make time to be more present with my kids (cleaning, laundry, and all of that get in the way.)  

To ditch the “stuff” and only keep what makes us truly happy. 

To find clothes that really fit and dump the ones I hate (stupid reason to be dissatisfied, but it’s a constant annoyance.)


I guess you could say I’m konmari-ing my life.  The thing is, we all need it.  Having less toys (we didn’t have many anyway!) makes it so much easier for them to focus.  They haven’t cared at all.  I love not having to shovel toys into bins because they have trouble cleaning them up.  The clutter was draining my tranquility in a huge way.

While this is a huge upheaval and annoyance right now, I highly recommend doing it.  Sometimes your life needs an overhaul.  I’m certainly overdue for one!


Next up: the kitchen counters.  Wish me luck!

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