Return to Minimalism

Well, well, well. This past month has felt as if I’m living through a Stephen King novel where I’m getting chased by some creepy clown with a chainsaw down a dark alley wearing high heals. I really don’t even know if Stephen King wrote a book about that but it feels like it could have happened. The struggle to grocery shop for what we need versus dealing with the fact that so many people are hoarding stuff so now I need to buy a couple extra things wrecked my mental health. When I moved out of my parents house fifteen years ago, there were times where rice or oatmeal was my breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I was poor. Now to walk into a grocery store and see shelves empty, it brought back all of those times where I worried about what I was going to eat. To over come those fears took years! So I gave myself some time to freak out and lose my shit. Now it’s time for me to get back to normal’ish. I’m reminded of this quote from Walden.

“I am convinced, that if all men were to life as simply as I then did, thieving and robbery would be unknown. These take place only in communities where some have got more than is sufficient while others have not enough.”

Henry David Thoreau, Walden

What have I changed in my grocery shopping methods? Before KonMari I would shop the sales and get extra of everything and some things would go bad before I even opened them. I did this because I finally got to a financial place in my life where I could afford the extra food. After I KonMari’d my things I shopped for what supply chain people say Just In Time. I didn’t pick up vinegar until I was within a week of running out so the vinegar would be restocked just in time. I did the same thing for all grocery shopping items. Always watching the kitchen and questioning Mr. BMM what he forgot to put on the grocery list wore me out. Honestly I found that to be extremely stressful being the complete opposite from where I was before. Then the whole world exploded with hoarders recently so I stocked up on things above my personal Just In Time levels. Now I am blending the two and feel much more at peace. I will add items to the grocery list when I am down to the last one or two of that item. This allows me to have some inventory but not excessive. It gives me time until we run out but I won’t be throwing items out.

“Not till we are lost, in other words, not till we have lost the world, do we begin to find ourselves, and realized where we are and the infinite extent of our relationships.”

Henry David Thoreau, Walden

The struggles of this whole situation is insane. Know that if you are reading this and are going through similar struggles that things will get better. I’m not a therapist or future teller, but know that things will get better. Ask for help. If you can, help someone out. We are all in this together.

To lighten the mood I want to share some things I have been doing and ways I have been keeping myself occupied.

What Has Been In My Ears?

I. LOVE. THESE. PODCASTS.

  • With the Joneses: An Unpodcast
  • How to be a Minimalist
  • Maximized Minimalist
  • Happier with Gretchen Rubin
  • Clean. Simple. Free.
  • Frugal Friends
  • Spark Joy
  • The Practical Minimalists
  • The Slow Home Podcast
  • The Sustainable Minimalists
  • The Lazy Genius
  • Wannabe Minimalists

House Hack

Vinegar! Vinegar! Vinegar! Use 1 cup of vinegar in a bucket of warm water to clean your floors.

“One of the best cleansers for vinyl flooring is apple cider vinegar. The acidity in the vinegar helps remove dirt and grime without leaving a buildup of soap or wax. Simply mix one cup of cider vinegar with a gallon of hot water and use a damp mop to clean, rinsing the mop frequently with hot water.”

Bob Vila

Vinegar is healthier for you and your home, costs less, and is versatile.

What Do I Smell Cooking?

Readers I am keeping the cooking SIMPLE! Last weekend I made cookies that only needed three ingredients. This upcoming weekend is a simple sheet pan meal. I am no longer interested in recipes that require odd or unusual ingredients. What is your easiest go to meal?

Which Book Do I have my Nose in This Week?

As Anne Bogel stated in her Don’t Overthink It book, I’m keeping with books that support my values, beliefs, and goals.

I’ve found it’s easier to live out my values when I keep them at the forefront of my attention, and one of my favorite ways to do this is by reading nonfiction. To keep my focus where I want it, I read about things that matter to me. 

Anne Bogel, Don’t Overthink It
You Can Buy Happiness (and It's Cheap): How One Woman Radically Simplified Her Life and How You Can Too

I am currently reading You Can Buy Happiness (and It’s Cheap): How One Woman Radically Simplified Her Life and How You Can Too by Tammy Strobel. This book is reminding me and refocusing me on my grocery shopping. I don’t need 100 bottles of salad dressing but 1 in use with an extra bottle or two is just find. Tammy documents the typical American life and her and her husband’s quest to simply and move into a tiny home without cars. I love how authentic and honest Tammy is with her process. Going through my own personal KonMari and no-shopping has helped me change closer to the person I want to be. These two quotes have really stood out to me so far from this book.

Robert Kennedy explained the problem beautifully. He said GDP doesn’t register “the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages; the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom nor our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile.”

Tammy Strobel, You Can Buy Happiness

Mark Twain once said, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Tammy Strobel, You Can Buy Happiness

Not sure what I will read next. Likely something on minimalism, tiny homes (it’s totally my dream), or decluttering.

Found Beauty

New section for this post! In this section I am going to share the most beautiful things I found outside this past week. Our area joined the rock decorating trend, or so that is what I have been told. I love finding these rocks!

16 thoughts on “Return to Minimalism

  1. Enjoyed your post. An easy meal here is black bean soup – 1 can refried black or Pinto beans, some diced canned tomatoes, some stock or broth. Add anything else you like such as frozen corn, chili powder etc. Tastes like more than the sum of its parts (watch the sodium as you go).
    I used to shop just in time as well, but have broadened that out. I have a small home so I can’t stock like I’m creating a grocery store in my house, but just enough for 3 people for 2 weeks or so.
    Have you read the Frugalwoods book?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Excellent recipe! I love it! Have you done this in a slow cooker?

      No, I have not read that book. But I just added it to my goodreads list! Thank you!

      Like

      1. Wonderful! I can’t wait to mix up a soup like you suggested.

        The book is a great reminder of the benefits of living simply.

        Like

  2. Lovely post!! When it comes to grocery shopping during these times I try to wait 2 weeks even 3 in between trips. Love the painted rocks btw. I also write posts about my own minimalist journey. Check them out when you have a chance?

    Liked by 1 person

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