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The minimalist quiche

(971 Posts)
educatingarti Wed 23-Jan-13 12:47:18

This is a new thread to replace the minimalist journey one which is nearly full!

CremeEggThief Fri 25-Jan-13 11:29:47

In need of a little reassurance. I bought some new cutlery and a cutlery divider, which is much smaller than my last one. Six of everything (knives, forks, spoons and teaspoons) will be enough for me and DS, won't it?

I also need new crockery and I'm wondering if four of everything (plate, side plate, bowl and mug) will be enough, given that we rarely have guests? Or should I get eight of everything, keep six in the cupboard and pop two of everything away, in case of breakages?

xMinerva Fri 25-Jan-13 11:30:14

Wow, 2nd thread already.

Well we're in the new house now. Still sleeping on the floor for dp & me but that's no problem.

Haven't had the money to just go out and buy new furniture so what we have been buying has been really thought about, do we really need this? Type thing.

We still haven't bought a tv and you know what? It's been fab, even dp has been fine about not having one. There's a couple of programmes we like to watch so just plugged in the comp and watched them on catch-up. Means we won't be getting a tv for a fair old while yet.

I'm loving living with minimal furniture. We have a 3 Seater sofa in our lounge and that's it. Need a dining room table pretty badly but no coffee tables, lamps, rugs etc etc. It's just so calm and relaxing.

Looking at my clothes next.

xMinerva Fri 25-Jan-13 11:31:58

Ps: It's a living/dining/kitchen in one large square room so doesn't look empty with just a sofa plonked in the middle of it. blush

issimma Fri 25-Jan-13 13:32:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sommewhereelse Fri 25-Jan-13 13:33:26

Cremeeggthief, I'd go for 6.There's not much point having 8 plates if you only have 6 sets of cutlery.

LemonBreeland Fri 25-Jan-13 13:33:52

xMinerva so pleased for you being in your new house, without all of the crap. I think the not having money and really considering your purchases is great. I think it's sometimes to easy to rush out and buy stuff to fill a space.

DH will always be like this so it needs me to rein him in.

Blossom my ideal would be to get rid of some storage items too. I have a very long way to go though.

cremeegg 6 is more than enough for cutlery. I would also say 4 plates, bowls etc. would be plenty.

I was hoping to tackle the dreaded cupboard under the stairs this weekend, however I now have a winter lurgy from DD and am feeling very run down. I have almost completed my home file, so will be throwing out the concertina box files that we have. This will free up so much space. Clearing space does make your head feel lighter. I may end up actually doing more than I thought this weekend as it may actually make me feel a bit better about being ill. grin Okay that makes me sound really sad! smile

harrietspy Fri 25-Jan-13 13:38:07

xMinerva, it must be lovely to be in such a clear space. (Am I right in thinking it was you living amongst your landlord's possessions?)

Hello everyone, I'm late to this party but I was lurking on the other thread. I started my own minimalist journey some time ago and DH have been gradually decluttering and de-owning for a few years - I read 'Slow your Home', 'Becoming Minimalist' and Dave Bruno's blog (100 Thing Challenge) pretty regularly. We're about to move flats so we're having another burst at the moment - moving in mid-March! So we're getting through another 'layer' of stuff. And we too have a Garage of Doom. But... we won't have a garage at the new flat, so everything in the Garage of Doom must go. We are considering the 'petrol and matches' decluttering system!

thunksheadontable - sounds perfect to me. Our new kitchen/living room will be:-

- Mac computer - this is multipurpose - DH and I use it for work, and for mumsnetting etc! But also we have it instead of a TV/DVD player, and instead of a stereo, and for DS's homework - it sits on a small desk. We've given up our TV, DVD player, stereo, freeview box etc.
- Storage unit for DH's records and a turntable
- Speakers for Mac and turntable
- Sofa, armchair, footstool
- A kitchen/dining table
- Four chairs
- phone

So you see we've kept a proper table too - for me minimalism is about making space for what's important. So DH has kept all of his vinyl records, and I've kept one bookcase full of books. It will sit in the hall at our new flat. But I only have five shelves on my bookcase, and I cull it quite frequently. I found that decluttering helped me to know what I really do treasure.

Do any of you guys struggle with people in RL just not getting this lifestyle? I struggle with people trying to give us stuff and people being judgmental about us having less stuff.

Also I get irritated (probably unreasonably!) by people who seem to assume that we're rich - because DH and I both work part-time and freelance so they assume we have lots of money and that's why we are able to do it. This got on my nerves a bit this week at work - I got some really mean envious comments yesterday about the fact that I work part time sad. 'Must be nice being a kept woman!' 'I wish I could afford to do that' etc. (DH and I earn exactly the same...) The only reason we can work part time is that we don't ever shop (we're trying to reduce our possessions, not increase them!), we live in a tiny flat, we have sold most of our possessions, we don't run a car etc. Of course there are people who HAVE to work full time just to put food on the table, but the colleagues making comments to me this week don't fall into that bracket. I shouldn't let it get to me, but it really did.

harrietspy Fri 25-Jan-13 15:02:04

bec that sounds really irritating (about the work comments) and inspiring (about your flat).

CremeEggThief Fri 25-Jan-13 16:09:19

I agree, that sounds really annoying about the work colleagues, Bec. People can be so bloody judgemental!

Thanks for tips on my cutlery/crockery! I actually bought two sets of four of everything for the cutlery, but as the new divider is so much smaller, it only holds six of everything. So I popped two away and then that made me consider if I can get away with just one boxed set of four for crockery, rather than automatically buying two sets and having enough crockery for eight.

That's sweet of you both to say harrietspy and CremeEggThief. By the way we've brought our cutlery down to four sets! We realised that when we entertain more than one person it's usually a finger food buffet anyway... We are usually four around the table for family meals so we have to wash up as we go.

I think the trouble is that my values have become so alien to the vast majority of 'normal' aspiration and people like my colleagues assume that I can't possibly be for real. Here I am, aspiring to own less. We're not supposed to want less, we're supposed to want more, to be dissatisfied, to strive so that we can buy the newest and latest... Not to be happy without buying anything - being happy in an empty room is considered a bit weird! Turning down an extra days work because you don't need the money and would rather spend the time with your child or doing something unpaid but fulfilling, well people assume that you'd have to be rich to do that.

But when you're decluttering doesn't it feel great when you've given something away? I had a moment of epiphany when I realised that I'd spent money on things and the greatest moment of happiness that that object gave me was the moment I threw it out. I admire people like Daniel Suelo and Mark Boyle who own nothing at all. I don't think I could live like them myself -especially living as a family I wouldn't impose it on DS - but as a thought experiment, I like the idea that giving up money and possessions is not the same thing as poverty. In fact the treadmill of buying more and more unnecessary stuff and working to pay off the debt you incur from buying it all - that looks more like poverty to me.

I know I'm going to feel a lot richer once our own Garage of Doom is empty! We're about to become the most popular people on our local freecycle grin

bluecarrot Fri 25-Jan-13 17:28:18

One of mine and my mums hoarding issues is food. Mum grew up constantly hungry sad and we reckon that's why she now keeps so much. I have then inherited this as normal practice.

We usually go to tesco together. I'm not bothered if we do, but mum likes it. However, instead I suggested that we each meal plan for 2 weeks. Once a month ill go and get both lots of shopping, and 2 weeks later, she goes and gets both lots. Less time we spend in supermarket, less opportunity to buy stuff! Plus if fitting both households groceries into one trolley, there isn't much room for extras. Since she likes the togetherness aspect I suggested we meal plan together instead.

Anyway, I went up today with laptop, list of current stuff in cupboards ( been doing store cupboard challenge) and my vouchers. She was bumbling about so after I made my list ( about 5 mins) I had a nosey in her cupboards. Then I started looking at the dates sad

That was 5 hours ago and all the time In between I was sorting through all the cupboards. I'd say a third of her food was dumped- some stuff was bbe 2008. A lot of aspirational food if you know what I mean.

So now I've had a good look, I think she has 3 months worth of dinners left, plus two weeks of soup/beans etc that her and dad have for lunch.

I'm throughly exhausted now (and strangely hormonal and slightly nauseous- please don't let this minimalist thing actually be nesting! Eek!)

educatingarti Fri 25-Jan-13 17:28:59

Hi everyone

CremeEggThief. How often do you wash-up/run the dishwasher? If you wash-up after every meal, 4 of everything may be fine but I found that 4 cereal bowls wasn't enough for me and I live on my own. I only run the dishwasher if it is reasonably full which isn't always every day and I sometimes have porridge last thing at night so can get through my cereal bowls!

Anyway - the good news: -Another bag of "stuff" made it to a charity shop today!

the bad news - I managed to knock a full mug of tea all over the kitchen floor (and up the fridge freezer, over the drawer fronts and into the drawers, over the washing machine and dishwasher and onto the hall carpet.). I've done a quick temporary mop-up but it will all need wiping properly! which I will have to do this evening after I've done some work that I've failed to do earlier on in the day because of oversleeping and having to wait forever for an hour at the doctors!

I have a loooong way to go before anyone would say I was minimalist, but I am aiming to be a little less cluttered! Does anyone else find the crap just keeps piling in to the house faster than you can sort it out? I'm feeling like that just now!

Smudging Fri 25-Jan-13 17:44:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Oh yes educatingarti it's definitely an ongoing lifelong process! We've been at it for years, and we still find (a) pockets of stuff we haven't tackled and (b) stuff that comes in through the door - notes from school, gifts, post, free papers, and 'necessities'...

bluecarrot my father suffered food poverty as a child as well. It has definitely affected the rest of his life. He is relatively well off and elderly now but deep down he's still a little boy afraid of hunger. Terribly sad. Well done for helping your mum. It must have been pretty exhausting emotionally.

CremeEggThief Fri 25-Jan-13 18:07:27

Well done, Bluecarrot.
Educatingarti, I have a slimline dishwasher I usually run every other day.

Smudging Sounds like you've done brilliantly. As long as you don't buy anything and keep clearing the debris of each day while your DS is ill don't worry if you need to take a break. But when you can get back to it... Yes I promise you life will be easier when you've cleared it. You'll have space, cleaning will be quick and easy, you'll feel wealthier and the background stress that you feel when you look at the clutter will disappear so that you feel at peace in your home. Next time you have ten minutes just pick one drawer, grab a bin bag and blitz just that drawer... You'll get your motivation back in no time.

SilentMammoth Fri 25-Jan-13 19:08:43

Sorry, blue carrot, are you pg and I missed that (nosy, sorry!).

Bec, I really, really, like your thinking. I like the values it encompasses and totally agree with you. Going to check out those blogs/book.

Minerva, am sooo jealous of no tv, I didn't have one til moved in with dh. Much preferred it. On plus side, we do only have the one and it's on a lot less than most peoples.

In other news, I moved three boxes if toys to the barn of doom. The intention is that we rotate toys. Dd4 turned two today and I'm putting money in her savings rather than buy a toy. She was very happy with chocolate cake.

Right, tomorrow I have a strategy for managing charity shop challenges! Have optician appt for dd1 and dd2 at nine in nearest town, so will leave at eight fifteen, get parking space right outside and stop stuff off as soon as it opens! An very pleased with this plan!

issimma Fri 25-Jan-13 19:54:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bluecarrot Fri 25-Jan-13 19:54:23

I blinkin well hope I'm not pregnant but if I am it would explain every single symptoms perfectly. Except we planned to start trying later thus year, not now!

Now I'm hoping its a weird virus that makes my hormones go nuts, weep at everything and sleep. And occasionally hurl despite not feeling sick, as well as other times feeling nauseous without puking . Likely. Yes?!

Anyway. I'm just awake so had better get up and go something. Tonight DD and I are sorting photographs smile

blossombath Fri 25-Jan-13 20:01:48

bluecarrot that sounds really hard with your mum - it's bad enough dealing with your own 'stuff issues' but anything where you are also dealing with a parent's issues is so draining. brew and biscuit (which is surely a wee piece of shortbread) for you.

bec it's sad, but totally unsurprising, that you get that kind of reaction. But how satisfying to know that you and DH are living the way you want to, and modelling that to your DC, rather than just unthinkingly following the herds.

We are a long way from that sort of reaction - most of the people I have discussed my minimalist (or simplification, as I now prefer to think of it) journey have laughed at me but that is because I am known as someone who cannot get rid of things. It is definitely going slowly for me at the moment, but I don't mind that because I think that it will be better to take things slow and really make changes to my life rather than just do a big declutter/shuffle of stuff and not face the underlying questions and challenges around minimalism.

I want to get to a place where stuff (getting rid as well as acquiring) plays a far smaller role in my life. And a place where my hosue looks lovely and clean and beautiful <perhaps misses point of own journey...> And I suspect that will take a bit of time. You'll see me here on thread 10, still clearing one drawer at a time!

harrietspy Fri 25-Jan-13 20:09:21

Hello all. Good luck with charity shop run, silent. I have 2 bags waiting in hall. I too want to hear more from bec.

Did an hour on my work room (sometimes also a living room. Big house, unconventional living arrangements).

We have too much furniture at the moment for the room - 2 sofas and an arm chair, desk, sideboard, shelves, bookcase - so I want to get rid of the beautiful-but-too-cold-to-sit-on leather sofa, but dc's dad (I think I should call him Sport like Harriet the Spy's friend, because he's my friend but we're not together any more) doesn't like the idea of people having nowhere to sit on the rare occasions there are 7+ adults here at once. I know what he means, but the room's too full. I'd love to pass the sofa on to someone who'd love it and use it. We have TOO MANY SOFAS!!!! (I will tell you about the others another day.Yes, we have more).

Can anyone share with me experience of selling furniture, please? smile

bluecarrot Fri 25-Jan-13 20:50:51

Thanks- it was fine with mum. She's not a difficult lady at all smile only 55, v intelligent etc. She was v sad to see all the wasted food but reminded her as long as it stops more being wasted then she shouldn't be too sad. Will see what happens in the next few weeks.

Pulled photos out, felt v overwhelmed so packed all back up again except one folder that we looked at, dated and placed back in the box. Enough for now. smile

Re selling furniture, I used gumtree, but if you live somewhere with a high density of people, you could consider eBay (on free listing day probably, if its your first foray!)

QueenofWhatever Fri 25-Jan-13 21:01:11

issimma I'm on Pinterest and love it. What name are you on under? If it's your RL name, I can PM you my RL name and we can link up that way.

xMinerva Fri 25-Jan-13 21:55:11

Yes, you're right. We were living with the landlords possessions

Another good think about moving with no furniture is we haven't got anywhere to store the things we do have. Most of it is still in boxes in the garage and it's really proving to me how little we actually use this stuff. I've taken a couple of things out, a couple of books and what have you but I haven't missed my having the rest of it in easy reach.

As well as my clothes, I'm going to go through all the photos. They're on the mac but there's thousands of them and we can't appreciate the good ones when they're mixed in with loads of crap/uneeded ones. Need to sort them into proper folders and get rid of the others.

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