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The minimalist quiche

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educatingarti Wed 23-Jan-13 12:47:18

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

BabCNesbitt Sun 27-Jan-13 15:35:20

Queen, I had the "a-ha!" moment when I realized that I was trying to dress for the way I used to live. I hadn't really admitted to myself that the life I lead as a SAHM (and, frankly, the shape of my hips!) isn't going to be the same as pre-DD, when I was going out to gigs regularly (and drinking too many pints, ahem). So, lovely as they are, there's no point in buying little 60s dresses - no access for BFing, for one thing - and when I do get one from eBay, it's because I'm a little in denial about not being that person any more.

harriet, you mentioned Into Great Silence - I've actually had it on my Netflix streaming queue for a few months, but by the time DD is asleep, I can never be motivated to sit and watch a film that long! I do really want to see it, though. Hmm...

Hello all! Aw shucks blush thanks for getting my ideas... Makes a change from colleagues looking at me like I'm a dangerous lunatic!

Thats great about the Monsoon dress QueenofWhatever I had a clothes breakthrough recently too - I needed to cull my coats as the new flat doesn't have a hall closet. There was one coat that I felt a wrench as I put it on the 'to go' pile. A friend made it for me, to wear on a date with DH when we were first going out. It was gorgeous, but I hadn't worn it in ages. I asked my niece if she wanted to rummage through the bags before they went to the charity shop. She picked out The Coat and every time I see her, she's wearing it. She looks amazing in it, she loves it, and The Coat is living the romantic life of a young girl about town in London again just like it did when it was first made instead of hanging in my closet. It makes me smile whenever I see her. I held onto it, as if I could cling on to my happy memories, but seeing DN in The Coat reminds me to let go and allow life to move forward.

How'd it go with the garage harriet?

I can relate about your Mums approval sommewhereelse. My mum is horrified that I rarely iron, dont offer formal dining to our friends etc. I think we all own lots of things purely because other people think we should. And I still want people's approval. But you know that Dave Ramsey quote “We buy things we don't need with money we don't have to impress people we don't even like.” I did that for YEARS! I'm more aware of it now.

MrsPennyapple Sun 27-Jan-13 16:48:10

We took a trip to the amenity site today, to dump some boxes that were taking up space in the spare room. I also dropped off a few recipe books that I've looked through and found they contain absolutely nothing that I want to cook.

It's a slow process here, I'd love to have a massive blitz and get rid of loads of things, but tend to only have a few minutes at a time, so just have to grab a few bits when I think of them, and put them in a box.

I have found it surprising going shopping since starting this. There's just nothing I need. And even more surprising, there's nothing I WANT. I haven't even had to stop myself buying anything, or give myself a talking-to about not really needing it. In fact I had the opportunity to look round the shops, child-free, the other day, and didn't bother because I knew I'd just be looking for the sake of it.

Hope you've made some headway in the garage Harriet, and that you are feeling better for getting started.

educatingarti Sun 27-Jan-13 17:58:11

Evening everyone.
I've come on here to get some more inspiration for getting on with something (anything) having spent a lot of the afternoon dozing! I do just need to have a cup of tea and a browse on mn first though!

notcitrus Sun 27-Jan-13 20:20:54

If this baby goes to sleep I'll put more toys etc in bags for the charity shop run tomorrow. Free listing on Ebay tonight if anyone is interested - I may do some and add photos later!

SilentMammoth Sun 27-Jan-13 20:48:07

Mrs penny apple, yes to not wanting stuff! This thread really is changing me.

Harriet, how did you and Sport get on? Hope your having a suitably restorative glass of wine.

Right, my room is stressing me out. My dm came to visit yesterday and spare room was full of ebay stuff. So I sling it in my room where it now looks like an inferior jumble sale. I was going to stock it back in spare room but on second thoughts, dc5 may arrive before all stuff ebayed, so will put it in black bags in barn of doom to ebay at leisure. I know that sounds like a complete cop out but I'm working three days a week and dh is away for feb, so really need not to load to much stuff on myself.

On plus side, spare rom look s lovely! Need to find a lodger at some point but am rubbish at sharing space when hormonal so will give it a few months.

Hope everyone else ok.

issimma Sun 27-Jan-13 20:59:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

blossombath Sun 27-Jan-13 21:58:15

wow silent a barn of doom is impressive. I have cupboards of doom, they are scary enough for me.

So this weekend, with your inspiration, I have:
taken two bags of stuff to charity shop
baked two cakes - decluttering all the random ingredients in my cupboards
uploaded photos from phone to laptop ready for photobooking
backed up photos and files from an old laptop and returned it to the people who lent it to us so they can dispose of it (they have data on there that they need to clean)
cleared pyjama drawer (now just two winter pairs and four summer pairs (more summer as I basically wear pants and vest and prefer to change once or twice a week, and having two would stress me out, washing wise)
cleared two box files in the spare room/nursery
spent some time thinking about why I cling to so many clothes
begun to fantasise about a household binder

psyching self up to start on the wardrobe as I'm starting to feel frumpy and rubbish about my clothes, especially for work, and I don't want to splurge on more until I clear the old.

Also hoping harriet's garage is less doom-laden now...

harrietspy Sun 27-Jan-13 22:06:26

Thanks so much everyone for the good wishes. What a lovely thread to open after a really tiring, but hugely productive, day! The Garage of Doom has been renamed the Garage of Letting Go (Sponsored By The Minimalist Quiche).

Ok, so we're not there yet, but:
- none of the furniture was water-damaged! Hooray! All the hard work I did to keep the stuff off the ground and properly stored has paid off.
- 2 car-fulls stuff to the recycling centre/dump.
- Everything remaining in the garage is now sorted into (a) keep and (b) sell. There is no junk left except for a very damaged mattress. We had disagreements over some 'keep' stuff (eg I really don't want any vases). It all got very emotional for both of us when we came across a big box of wedding stuff and we decided it wasn't appropriate or wise to try to decide about that stuff today.

Some of it was really easy. Do I need my Pope and Swift essays from college? The crappy clothes rail that always collapsed? Not so much.

Bizarrely I was hit by a wave of sadness when I got rid of my old portable telly. It was an 18th birthday present from my parents. I missed my dad today. SO much evidence of his practical care: little wedges of wood he'd cut so that our furniture would sit straight on wobbly floors. But I don't need the wedges to remember him. smile

We brought 5 huge Ikea storage boxes home to be sorted. One was all books - I've already despatched most of them to the sell/charity box. I was, however, DELIGHTED to come across my old Sara Paretsky "VI Warshawski" books: my favourite comfort reading. For now, they're staying smile.

The other boxes are wedding stuff, children's drawings (in HUGE quantity!), family memorabilia, my notebooks and diaries. I'm going to go through these a few at a time, photograph the best stuff and chuck the rest. One thing I won't get rid of is a diary my mum made of ds1's first year - she gave it to me as a Christmas present when he was 1.4. That is a present worth having. smile

All in all it was a far better day than I envisaged. We now need to get movers booked and to pack up the remaining 'stuff to keep' and bring it here, where we can make decisions about what we really need. Then we can let the house go...

We have so much work to do on how we navigate the next year as a family (because even though we're no longer a couple we ARE still a family). When do we get divorced? How do we separate our finances? Do we continue to share the same house? How do we manage to get time away from the family unit? For me, letting go of stuff is helping me to free up energy to deal with that stuff.

Thanks again for all the good wishes and good will. It really, really helps. thanks thanks thanks

harrietspy Sun 27-Jan-13 22:08:57

ps (with apols for mega-post) I got rid of the massive Ikea box full of Interiors magazines and scrapbooks without looking through them first. I felt so much lighter! I literally felt a weight lifting. Quite amazing.

CremeEggThief Sun 27-Jan-13 22:16:00

wine and thanks for Harriet. Sounds amazing. Well done!

MrsPennyapple Sun 27-Jan-13 23:21:23

Good work Harriet. What an emotionally draining day! I hope you have a really good sleep tonight, you must be knackered.

SilentMammoth Mon 28-Jan-13 09:03:06

Well done, Harriet, was thinking about you yesterday and hoping it went well.

Becstar I followed that blog link and one of the titles jumped out at me "Stop making it complicated". You know when something is that simple, yet staring you in the face without you seeing it? That's distilled minimalism, imho anyway.

blossom, mmm, household binder, me too!

HellonHeels Mon 28-Jan-13 10:28:53

Wow Harriet that's an amazing lot of work you got done. Sounds emotionally tough, too - I felt a little teary reading about your TV and the things your dad had done for you x

Glad to hear you're reaping the rewards of the work, feeling lighter and with more energy.

educatingarti Mon 28-Jan-13 10:34:08

Wow! Well done Harriet - I'm glad it feels better to have got some of that stuff started.
Antoinette I guess my subject is "children who are struggling or unhappy at school and parents want to do something about it but are not sure what"!! I do it as a full-time but not very lucrative career, but I love it!

Basically I teach literacy and numeracy at primary level, "special needs" English at secondary level plus sciences and maths to GCSE - oh and the occasional bit of 11+/independent school exam entry stuff too. I'm a physics graduate who then trained and worked in primary teaching which is partly why I can do such a Jack of all trades range of work. I see a lot of subtle learning difficulties as well as undiagnosed dyslexia and deal a lot with students who have lost confidence in their own abilities for one reason or another. OK - don't get me started or I could go on all day! grin

I've decided to start making a list of everything going out and coming into the flat. I'm not sure why but I think I want to be encouraged by how much I do whilst discouraging myself from buying too much extra to replace it! Also I get to use up one of my A6 ring binders to keep the list in.

I decluttered another drawer in my bedroom last night and got rid of a whole load of random paperwork and re-discovered some creative work I had done ( poems plus the start of a probably not so short story).

I'm just off to take some rubbish and recycling out before I get on with my work for the day - I've been avoiding doing it all weekend for some strange reason that I don't really understand other than I don't like taking rubbish out!!

BigBlackBagBorderBinLiner Mon 28-Jan-13 11:13:23

I think I have become an unofficial house clearing resource. A local mum with a tough upbringing feels she has to keep stuff 'just in case' but is now passing it on to me, I accept it with lots of thanks then drop it straight off at the recycling bins.

She has become more confident but still feels those worn out trainers and sad car boot bargains need a 'good' home, directly to the charity shop is a stage too far. Her kids are enjoying the space and have started inviting friends round. I think it's going to be a good year for this family.

issimma Mon 28-Jan-13 11:32:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hobnob57 Mon 28-Jan-13 13:59:42

Maternity stuff is all on eBay.
Been thinking about all the chat about reducing shopping. We don't shop really, due to distance from town, parking fees and total lack of disposable income, and that has been the case for about 8 years. I sometimes mourn not knowing what is in the shops when it comes to buying presents and when I really do need to go clothes shopping, but really I hate it all. Despite this our house is full of clutter, primarily due to dcs and also my sentimental issues with gifts. Need to get over that. Such as the crystal church we were given as a wedding present which needs to go, I now realise. I'll need to find another way to remember the giver. Also souvenirs from travels - my family lived overseas at various times and there were always niknaks and furniture from each country which had a story and I loved that as a kid. I need to think about to manage that in my life and my small home.

sommewhereelse Mon 28-Jan-13 14:16:09

Hobnob, how would you feel if you gave a gift that the recipient held onto if they didn't like it?

From the Banishing Clutter book (which I have acquired recently):

"You were given it. You own it. You can do what you like with it.... Do you want to keep something that you don't like even through you feel guilty for hating it?..... Anyone who wants to see you use what they have given you, as if they still have a stake in it, probably doesn't have your happiness in mind"

And on sentimental value: if such things bring you joy, you should keep them.

Could you have a table for niknaks which you rotate, keeping the rest in a box, like you might have a nature table? That way you can still pass on the stories to your children but you won't have to see everything all the time.

About the shopping thing, I went for years only getting to shops other than the supermarket every 6 months. For gifts, I got a lot of inspiration from mn threads, particularly around Christmas. Now I live in a city but I have the habit of doing all my stealing ideas research online before I face the shops.

SilentMammoth Mon 28-Jan-13 17:11:42

Well, I bagged up all those clothes but put them in the car, not the barn to ebay. I'm too tired and it's just another thing to feel bad about not doing. And as soon as I did that I felt lots better!

BoffinMum Mon 28-Jan-13 18:25:35

Wondered where you are all hiding.

bluecarrot Mon 28-Jan-13 18:28:38

Hey Boffin smile

Still feeling a bit weird today so took it easy and just picked through a few boxes of "stuff" and will do a charity shop and dump run tomorrow. Should be able to fill the car again smile

My interest in eBay flags til I earn £50 then I love it again! But ill live the freedom from stuff more so I need to find some sort of rule re what value is ok to let go.

QueenofWhatever Mon 28-Jan-13 19:01:06

harriet I'm very, very pleased it all went OK yesterday. I know the whole process isn't finished yet but you've taken the biggest step. The rest will follow.

antoinette re Pinterest, I'm in Bristol but I'm now following you. No idea who you're following in Aachen!

I hadn't intended to do anything yesterday but ended up having quite a productive tidy up of one of our cupboards. I'm also getting to the tipping point of wanting to sort out all my old photos and letters. They're just annoying me now. I think I'll probably scan them onto DP's hard drive and then make some photo books.

Part of the reason I felt motivated to sort stuff yesterday is because I'm really thinking about how I want our home to be. It was built in 2011 and I moved in in June that year. DP then moved in last autumn and it feels like things are starting to settle and I can make it how I want it. I also want to get cracking before I get distracted by the garden in spring.

I want to get rid of one of our cupboards and get an armchair for a reading corner. We only have a three-seater sofa as well as a table and six chairs in our living room. I also want to get a chaise langue for the sofa (it's an IKEA Karlstad one which is modular) as there's just not that much room for the three of us to lounge around.

Poor DP, he has no idea that I'm now looking at his things and thinking hmm, let's get rid of that, that and that!

AntoinetteCosway Mon 28-Jan-13 19:05:17

Oh no! When I typed in your name that's who it came up with...I have I followed her blush and found you in my followers list and followed back!!

AntoinetteCosway Mon 28-Jan-13 19:05:53

I mean I have UNfollowed her, which my phone auto corrected as it's clearly not a word!

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