Minimalism

My house is officially on the market.  It is bittersweet to me.  We have lived in this home for fourteen years, and I adore my neighbors.  I know them so very well.  I know every nook and cranny of the once farmland that is now our little subdivision:  the tadpoles in the creek by my neighbor’s house (and how she so kindly lets us tramp through her yard to get to the creek!), the long Deep South days at the pool, the way we can see the Fourth of July fireworks from the pool, the hill we can sled on in the winter in the few years we actually do receive snow.  A true sense of place, which seems to be rare in this day and age.

In the process of getting our home ready to sell, we had seen a lot of model homes.  And as many of you know, model homes don’t have real people living in them.  There is no clutter.  We set out to take our  home (the one that we thought we had done a good job keeping fairly clutter-free) and to make it more like a model home….you know, so “someone could envision themselves living here.”

Our home is pretty bare now.  It looks like a model home.  The children’s rooms have about five books in them; we have a few board games and some crayons and pencils.  It is like one of those minimalist blogs.

I don’t know as I want our things out of storage.  So much of it is books anyway.  All I know is right now it only takes a half hour or so to clean up the whole house with so few things in it.

The foundation on our new home is being poured today; may the foundation be strong and bless us and keep us.  And may we bring less things into it so we have more joy.

Love to you all,

Carrie

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15 thoughts on “Minimalism

  1. I am eternally impressed with you and others who can become so minimalist. I long for that way of being, and will manifest it one day. Thank you for sharing your experience. Currently, I am far from it — and we just moved last fall (we kept our original house for our business so i didn’t have to get rid of too much . . . ). Blessings on you.

    • Shannon,
      We will see how minimalist we remain when all the “stuff” comes out of storage! LOL.
      But for now it is fun!
      Blessings,
      Carrie

  2. I highly recommend reading Seven by Jen Hatmaker. She did a personal journey over 7 months, focused on 7 areas of excess, cut each area down to 7 items and learned so much along the way. Like you said, clear out the clutter so there can be more joy!

  3. I recently decluttered my house (probably not as minimalist as yours but far far better than what it was)…yes..it does feel light on the soul!!
    Blessings Carrie, wishing you a clutter free and energy-full house forever…
    Love,
    Nirupama

  4. The quest for minimalism is on-going and ever-changing, the end always just a little bit further away. But it is so very worth it. Blessings to you on your new adventure.

  5. One of the ways to keep the minimalism feel is to perhaps keep the clutter out. By this I mean, as you take things out of storage, put them out of sight in the garage, or spare room or other such place where you don’t go that often. You have the security of knowing they are there, and so only then take things back into the house if you absolutely need them. After three or six months, or definitely a year, anything that you haven’t needed and isn’t back in the house can be recycled, repurposed, donated or thrown out.

  6. I would love to live minimalistic,….but I think it takes a lot of special care to find the balance as not to live in a bare and cold home. I have seen very few places that really look nice and warm in a minimalistic way. I guess the Shakers were great at that kind of a lifestyle! But than again, …life happens.
    Blessings on your new home Carrie!
    Maggie

    • Maggie,
      I definitely dont want to be too minimalistic…I don’t really want to be down to one plate for each family member, for example. I love to have people over, and love community, so it is important to me that the house be warm, inviting, comfortable…if someone wants to come over and nap they are welcome. :) In my new home, I am hoping to do a lot of British Colonial/tropical/nautical/botanical kinds of influences and I want to show that off by not having a lot of extra things about. :)
      Love hearing from you, one of my very long time readers!
      Carrie

  7. Wow, we just listed our house for sale, too. I am in exactly the same place right now — we’ve stripped down for showing and I’m kind of wishing we could live like this all the time. We still have a few dozen books in each child’s bedroom and way too many toys. And I’m going out of my mind running around all day trying to control the clutter in case somebody wants to see the house. You’ve inspired me to box up even more!
    More importantly, I’m just in the same mental space right now thinking about minimalism and the burden of stuff. Thank you for posting about this. May we all find some balance in our living spaces.

  8. We always feel the same way after coming home from the beach–we stay at a friend’s condo that is furnished and has no clutter. We bring one book and one toy for each of the girls, and two outfits and one set of nightclothes for each of us (regardless of length of stay). We love it so much and always wonder how to replicate that in our own home when we return from vacation. There are some things that we are happy to get back to, but the vast majority is just extra stuff.

  9. Simplifying children’s books and toys is an ongoing activity for me. I have found a good balance of what we keep out with the rest in small bins organized by toy-type. My ideas were primarily initiated from reading Simplicity Parenting. So the best thing I’ve figured out is that so many toys (the kind with many pieces) can actually be scaled way back. A set of magnet dolls, for example: four flat dolls with approximately 50 different outfits were first reduced to three dolls with roughly 25 outfits and then later, to two dolls with 10 outfits. My daughter and I worked together on this; I would ask her what she likes and doesn’t and she gladly put multiple pieces aside. She plays so well with it! And way better for clean-up. I’ve done this with wood kitchen food, train tracks, etc….

    Thanks for all you share!

  10. I was also inspired by ‘Simplicity Parenting’. To me it is a process of making my home more pleasant by creating space around the belongings we treasure which in turns helps us enjoy those things more and creates space for imagination and ingenuity. I am convinced that having fewer and simpler toys has allowed my children freedom to exercise their creativity. After considering my baby and toddler’s toys I thought I would pay myself the same courtesy and have enjoyed the process of paring back kitchen, wardrobe, laundry, crafts supplies… it is an on-going process. Reducing the items in my kitchen has been especially satisfying, and overall I think our home feels more homely because I am less distracted by items I don’t really need or want and those things can go on to fulfil a useful purpose in another person’s life. (And I would also like to add my appreciation for your blog, I have found many of your posts inspiring and helpful.)

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