It's been a whole year since I blabbed on and on about my quest for minimalism,
(And yes, I still hold Marie Kondo's book as a second Bible.)
and since it's a new year
which means organizational sales are spiking right along with gym memberships,
I felt it my duty to revisit the subject.
As you can already guess,
this post was touched off by an article I read
My favorite quote of the article:
I went into the playroom—the room that was the bane of my existence. This was a room full of colorful bins, each bin full of toys. There were toys on the floor, in chests, in boxes, toys everywhere. I would send my kids in here to play and they would come out less than ten minutes later complaining of boredom.
This room was pointless, and I’d had enough.
Spoiler alert: when she threw everything out, her kids played better!
We are already accumulating too many toys.
When we were in our townhome,
I had a very strict toy rotation center that worked great.
It was small, so it forced me to get rid of toys.
In turn, the rotation system kept the toy mess at a minimum,
and forced Aaron to really play with the toys he had out.
The "problem" with our new home is that we have too much space.
Too many rooms.
Too many closets.
A full finished basement with no purpose except to serve as toy chaos.
(one-half of our basement, relatively cleaned up)
I know, I know, #firstworldproblems.
I see your eye roll.
The problem is because we have space to store everything,
I've relaxed my toy purging.
The holidays just blew through,
which means we have an avalanche of new toys.
I justify (to myself) that I'm letting time tell which toys are the keepers,
and which ones will be tossed/donated.
But in the meantime, the toys are everywhere.
And Aaron doesn't play, so much as he just tornados everything.
And most days my finished basement looks like this:
My second favorite quote:
Studies show a direct link between the amount of physical possessions in a house and the stress level of the female homeowner. One study done at UCLA found that the more stuff was in a woman’s house, the higher her level of stress hormones. This same study also found that women subconsciously relate how happy they are with their homelife and family to how they feel about their homes. So the more clutter and chaos in the home, the less happy the woman is with her family and her life.
I need to stay vigilant with my own purging.
Excuse me while I sidetrack here to a Tale of Two Homes:
I was at my parent's house and helping with dishes.
The pile of dirty dishes was huge and as I started washing,
I started counting.
5 knives all roughly the same size that were dirty.
Why do you need 5 identical knives?
Well the logic here is that when you are cooking,
you can reach for another knife without having to clean the first.
And thus save time cooking.
EXCEPT what happens at the end of cooking,
is that you now have not one, but FIVE knives that need to be washed.
Multiply this across five spatulas,
and your "to wash" pile is ENORMOUS.
And after all that work cooking, who wants to tackle an enormous dishwash pile?
Of course, my parents' argument is that every knife has a different purpose.
I counted over 12 knives in their knife block.
In contrast, my in-laws have 4 knives.
FOUR total knives, in their whole block.
And they have gotten by 30+ years of cooking delicious meals with FOUR knives.
And I began to realize why when I go to my in-laws for dinner,
the kitchen is relatively clean after a day of cooking.
While my parents' kitchen looks like a tornado.
Because if you are forced to clean the bowl and knife to use it again,
you don't have a huge pile at the end to clean.
So back to my original thought process.
I don't want to end up with 5 identical anything.
I did some pretty awesome purging before we moved,
so our new house is in decent condition right now
(except for the toy problem).
But it will only stay like this if I stay on top of it.
I received two new spatulas for Christmas,
and so far I only tossed one old one in the donation pile.
My hoarding habits still run strong.
But I need to toss the third spatula.
It's a small act, but it represents a lot.