Thursday, February 5, 2015

Minimalism Project: January

What is the Minimalism Project?

Minimalism is one of the few principals I have discovered that ring true in my heart. In an effort to keep myself focused on minimalism to keep my commitment to minimalism alive and present, I want to post monthly about my journey.

How did I do this month?

Minimalist Mini-Challenge:

Each month, I want to participate in a minimalist challenge

This month, I participated in Into-Mind's 30 day minimalism challenge. This challenge was a simple one, with an idea for each day. Some were more challenging than others (hello, stay offline for a day), but they were all very short and doable. I did not complete them all but it was a worthy exercise.

Minimalist Reading:

I want to read a minimalist, wardrobe, or de-cluttering book each month to help inspire me.

I purchased Debbie Roes's book, 'End Closet Chaos'. This was a great read and gave me great motivation to continue to work on minimizing my closet and refining my shopping habits. This book is a perfect resource for those who have not been long-time readers to her blog and need help managing their wardrobes, but if you're like me and you have it's a great way to remind yourself all the wonderful ideas and principals she has shared with us and has learned throughout her journey. I immediately was drawn to recalculate how many pieces of clothing I would need ideally based on her idea, and was surprised to see how much I have grown! I now feel that I can wear my clothing more often than when I initially tried this out, and have some wardrobe categories that are clearly a little too large- and a couple others that could use some help!

I also started to re-read Jennifer Scott's book 'At Home with Madame Chic'. I really enjoyed this book and found it inspirational the first time, but I did not put a lot of the principals in practice. Some of the ideas I implemented immediately- such as the timed cleanup. I tend to use it when I'm feeling overwhelmed and tired, particularly at night after dinner. Rather than the daunting task of 'cleaning up' everything, I set a timer on my Ipod to 15 minutes and tackle all the cleaning I can muster in that time. If I still have more cleaning to do (sometimes I finish early!) and enough energy, I might extend it another 10 minutes. If not, I usually have made a big impact and can go to bed feeling accomplished. It's amazing what can be done in such a short amount of time! Anyways, I hope re-reading this book will let more of her principals and ideas sink in!

What left my home:

  • 9 large bags (950 bottles) of recyclables ($47.50 back from bottle deposit!)
  • 1 large bag of trash from sorting the bedroom and storage room.
  • 2 large boxes of cardboard from breaking down excess boxes throughout my home.
What came in: (Counting anything that is not food or replacement toiletries/household items)
  • Replacement Blender (necessary!)
  • Portable DVD player for my daughter (not necessary but makes life easier!)
  • 2 new mouth guards for my husband's MMA training (we found out later that he didn't need them- the one he had before was fine, he just never read the instructions on how to mold it to fit!)
What I de-cluttered:
  • Pass 1 was made through my bedroom. I removed ~3 large tubs of things from the bedroom to the 'storage' room to be finished with. ~2 tubs of items were put back where they belong across the house. The table was removed and put back in the storage room with the crafts (originally intended to be a craft table) and all the clutter stacked on the table was taken care of. The clutter strewn across the room and closet was also dealt with. This took 4 days! I expect another 2 passes in the bedroom- an item-by-item intensive pass, and a third detail pass where each item is placed in it's forever home and additional storage items or decorative/functional items are purchased if needed. I then would only need to maintain and do a once-a-year complete review to keep heading down the minimalist path.
  • Pass 1 is 1/4 complete in the storage room. The intention is to turn it into my daughter's bedroom and to reduce the crafts collection, then move it into the downstairs bedroom once it is no longer occupied (hopefully by June, a family member is staying with us currently).
  • I swept clean my hot spots- the stairwell and the island between the kitchen and dining room. The other hot spot (table in bedroom) was removed completely.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Meli
    The thought of 20 items is quite a challenge.
    I've never thought of quantity of pieces but on money/budget.
    I guess its a good idea -
    I have too, being reading on minimalism and have been getting rid of certain things around the house… but its quite a task.