Discovering Minimalism

Living with less.

This may or may not be for you. I’m not here to twist your arm but to propose an alternative to living with lots of stuff.

Alternative – Live with less

Charity – Giving is good

Benefits – Peace of mind and freedom








Perfectionism Is The Enemy Of Progress

TulipsI heard this phrase on the radio today.

From Wikipedia;

The perfect is the enemy of good is an aphorism or proverb meaning that insisting on perfection  often results in no improvement at all. The phrase is commonly attributed to Voltaire…..

The first story that came to mind was a family I knew that lived out of boxes for years and could never make a decision. When asked why they had not hung pictures or put things away they said it was because they wanted things to look just right and therefore could not bring themselves to make the final decision.

Sometimes you just have to plow ahead and accept that you might make a decision that you regret. This is when we ask ourselves…what’s the worst that could happen? If you are stressing over hanging the picture on the wall then the worse that could happen is you would have a little nail hole eventually above the picture. So what! Fill it with fill or toothpaste, take a q-tip and dab some paint on there. So what!

The same goes with organizing which can’t happen unless you declutter.


It’s not alive! It doesn’t require a funeral or a memorial service. It’s not going to Heaven or Hell, it’s just going to someone else that could use it. That’s all.

It’s simple.

Stop stressing and relax, it’s just stuff.

Pretty Flowers, Be Patient

blooming sunflowerOrganizing your stuff is a process and if you want to be successful you will have to get rid of what you don’t wear or use or even need (which for most of us, is a lot of stuff)

Parting with expensive stuff is painfully hard. A harsh reminder of money not well spent. Ouch. Maybe the one good thing to come from parting with something expensive is next time around you won’t be lured into buying it in the first place.

Parting with sentimental stuff can be just as hard. There are ways to safely let go and at the same time keep the memory.

No matter what method you use you need to remember to be patient with yourself.

If you follow through and begin to declutter you will eventually see something pretty in the simplicity of life.

Be patient.





What Will You Leave Behind

The WakeWill you leave memories of doing fun things with grand-kids or will you leave things like this?pig with lipstick

The broken garden pig with lipstick. I finally threw it away!

Yes, one day someone will be going through your stuff. Please do them a favor by going through it first.

Keeping that in mind might prompt you to get rid of things you would have normally kept.

If you are not using it and you don’t need it and in fact you don’t even enjoy it, then what are you waiting for?

Organize by decluttering today!



Hoarding Awareness Week

WOW!   composting food

I just found out that this is Hoarding Awareness Week. This is now getting lots of attention. More and more studies along with more publicity not to mention the TV shows. Over the years I have met a few serious hoarders but most of us fall somewhere in the middle.

In fact most people would simply say… “I would like to be more organized”

Organization means being productive and happy. If you are finding it hard to get organized you might want to consider the possibility that you have too much stuff.

If the key to happiness is being organized then what is the key to being organized?

Get rid of things that you don’t use!

That includes;

Clothes you don’t wear.

Broken things in the garage.

Gadgets in the kitchen that you have never used.

Towels and sheets that haven’t been used in 5 years, 1 year for the brave.

It’s a start.sunflower

Give yourself permission to NOT be a hoarder.





It’s A New Day Today

My year is up, now what? I took a year to really get organized. What I discovered is what I already knew. Being organized or at least feeling organized creates calmness. Makes you feel at peace. It is the opposite of chaos.

How does one get organized?

They get rid of what they don’t use, need or enjoy. For most of us, that is a lot of stuff. I’ve posted dozens of short stories on getting rid of things along with ideas that came from many of you.

Something else I discovered was I like being a minimalist. This is not to say that I don’t have stuff but less for me was best.

For now my stories will continue. There are other areas that I want to declutter. I’m always interested in your stories and any ideas you might have to help others get organized.

Get out a tissue we all have issues.

One more thing that has become clearer over this last year is that whatever your issues are, someone else has had it and worse.

It’s official. Hoarding is now a disease. You are in good company and no need to go it alone.

You need support and it’s out there.

Stay tuned for more!

What Do Cars and Purses Have In Common?

They both are catch all areas and both need to be cleaned out regularly. This should be simple and something we can do quickly.

Start with your purse and dump out all of the contents. If you time yourself it should take no more than a few minutes.


Gum wrappers in the trash. Receipts in your office area. Tape measure to the garage. Loose dollar bills back in the wallet. Pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters in the change jar. If you don’t have a change jar and you actually make change in stores then you’re impressive and in a minority.

Crumbs in the trash. Lip stick and gloss in the little side purse pocket. Slip cell phone in holder. Gummy bears with lint – trash. Brush or comb, pull out hair ball and through away.

Used Kleenex and expired coupons, trash. Loose keys back on correct key chain.

Now your car!

Pretty much the same routine but more physical because now you are bending over and reaching plus the items are bigger. Coffee cup in the holder, trash. Kids school paper (a place for everything and everything in its place). Pens and pencils back in the house (one in purse). Flyer left on car window, trash.

Kids shoes and socks, back in their rooms. Water bottles to the kitchen. Sports equipment  in the garage. Jackets and clothes back in their proper places.

Doesn’t that feel better?

Why Did The Shoemakers Kids Never Have Shoes?

What is the origin of the phrase, the cobbler’s children have no shoes?


Origin unknown; however the essence of this phrase is used to describe the phenomenon where certain ‘professionals’ in any given area are so busy with work for their clients and their teams that they neglect using their professional skills to help themselves or those closest to them. For example – the painter & decorator who never decorates his own house, the web designer that hasn’t finished their website, or the accountant who is late in submitting his own tax return!

The reason I took this year to get organized is because I’ve been very busy over the years organizing other homes and businesses. If you were to drive by my house and the garage door was open, you would assume a hoarder lived there.

It reminded me of that saying that the shoemakers kids never had shoes…..

This is why I am taking a year to get organized. Before I even start I know the answer.


So here we go……..



Free Lipstick With Purchase

It is hard to pass up free. Everyone I know likes the price of free. How many free lipsticks are in your bathroom drawer? It is time to dump your makeup drawer or make up bag out on the counter. Include make up from you bathroom medicine cabinet and car glove compartment as well.

Divide and Conquer

Let’s start. Separate your lipsticks, mascaras, liners, eye shadows, face make up, touch up sticks, fingernail polish, bobby pins, nail files, lotions, creams, scissors, and bar soap from the hotel.

Next, we need to consider possible health hazards. Most experts will tell you there is an expiration date to makeups and lotions. There of course it the smell test. You know the smell of rancid. If you smell that, then throw it out.

Protect Your Eyes from Infection

Mascara is always the one to be most concerned with because of eye infections. Keep 3 to 6 months. If the mascara wand is dry when you pull out then it is time to toss.

Powders and eye shadows could possibly last 2 to 3 years but honestly, if you have an eye shadow from 3 years ago you clearly don’t like the color. Unless you are saving the bright blue eye shadow for that 70’s party we talked about then toss them.

if you have an eye shadow from 3 years ago you clearly don’t like the color.

Base Makeup

  • Water base – 12 months
  • Oil base – 18 months

Most women I know have kept some longer than that because of the different shades we use during winter and summer. Unless you are super organized and somewhat of a minimalist you probably have several bottles. Or you have poured from one glass bottle into the other and there is no way to know how old the stuff is, so at least do the smell test and then narrow it down. A couple of bottles should suffice for the year.

Unless you run a makeup studio, every women I know has too much. There is no way they will be able to use all of it within a reasonable time. Save yourself some money and next time they offer free gift  with purchase, give it a pass. I promise that free deal will come along again before you know it. Ignore it, because you will have already bought three new shades by then (unless you keep reading my site).


Now lets talk lipsticks. Of all of the makeup, lipsticks seem to last the longest, about 3 years. I know my aunt has lipsticks from 15 years ago and they still work. So when they say a shelf life of  3 years, I think it is because of health reasons.

No one has more lipsticks than my sister. She has every color, every shade, shiny and not shinny.  Several times a year we go through all of them and she keeps a few. It’s amazing how they accumulate so fast. She is happy to take the lipsticks from my mom’s free gifts and I too am happy to give her from my gifts. I’m not so sure we are doing her any favors but my mom and I love the opportunity to give them to her.

Keep only what you use. Get rid of old make up.

Less is Always More

Clean out the drawer. If you organized your makeup today and didn’t throw out any of it then something didn’t work. The point is to narrow it down. Streamline your makeup.

Keep it really simple, it will save time and money.