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Super Simple Simplifying Checklist

A year ago I embarked on a journey to declutter our  home — I wrote about that in several posts, Intentional DeCluttering, Tidying: You’re Still You!, and a couple more, beginning with, Eliminating Clutter.  As I mentioned then, I hadn’t heard of Marie Kondo until after I’d begun the arduous project. My family “introduced” me to her program and teased me a bit about getting rid of everything that didn’t spark joy. The idea totally resonated with me and propelled me to keep working at it. And it still does in many ways.

In the decluttering process I had to change some of my self imposed rules from time to time — I had to “give myself permission” to not go through/sort/declutter some things.  I didn’t have or wasn’t ready to take the necessary time to sort through and organize our gazillion pictures (again!), for example.  Nor did I feel like going through bins of notes, letters, cards, mementos from travels, programs, etc.  I also didn’t want to go through our homeschool books/workbooks/materials. I’m sure one of these days I’ll just wake up and, out of the blue, decide to tackle one or all of these three areas!

So, for today I thought  I’d share a list with you that I have in the ongoing quest to simplify our home.  By the way, my simplicity is probably not at all what another woman’s simplicity looks like. Example: I have way, way, way more dishes, cups and glasses than most would think necessary. Same with pans, kitchen gadgets, small appliances, and clocks.  But the daily goals for a tidy home, clean counters, orderly shelves, no piles of laundry, sorted mail/papers, and several other things continue to be met.  Decluttering really and truly has made an enormous difference.  Feel free to copy, add to and personalize this list.

Give yourself permission to reduce or get rid of these things:

  • Chipped/broken or disliked  dishes, cups, mugs, glasses
  • Kitchen gadgets you NEVER use, don’t like
  • Old food {fridge!} {pantry!} {spices!} {coffees/teas!}
  • Frozen foods you cannot identify {old or freezer ‘burned’}
  • Under sink stuff (Order, consolidate, eliminate)
  • All plastic storage containers that don’t have lids. Lids.
    Refrain from buying various types of plastic. Choose one. Stick to it! Always.
  • Water bottles you do not use. Leaky ones will keep leaking!
  • bread bags/ties and bad paper plates/napkins you NEVER use
  • spent birthday candles (Any candles you really don’t like/use)

Closets / shelves / drawers

  • Clothes. Clothes you KNOW you’ll NEVER wear
  • Old shoes. You know you don’t even ever plan to wear them
    especially if they don’t really fit or are in terrible shape
  • Coats, Jackets, Scarves, Belts, Gloves, Hats you NEVER wear/use
  • Underthings you KNOW you’ll never wear or that don’t fit you
  • Socks, stockings, leggings, etc., you know you’ll never wear
  • All socks MISSING mates
  • Event t-shirts and/or tote bags with no sentimental meaning
  • Glasses (donate) sunglasses, jewelry, wallets, purses
  • Old luggage, bags, backpacks you NEVER use
  • Make-up and nail polish (esp. old!), toiletries you NEVER use
  • Old perfume
  • ALL *old* medication, creams, drugs, cough syrup etc.

Books
Magazines
Movies
Electronics
Arts / Crafts / Sewing  {lists for another day!}

And remember… even “baby steps” taken to declutter, simplify, or add order to your home are steps taken!
There’s no score keeper, the steps you (and I) take to simplify or declutter our homes are just for us and our families. There’s freedom in order!
There’s freedom from bondage to meaningless or useless or no longer useful stuff!

I’m on to “round two” or year two of simplifying and decluttering…
Continuing to work on my Super Simple Simplifying Checklist.

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Hindsight Isn’t 20/20

You’ve heard the saying — probably have said it yourself from time to time: “Hindsight’s 20/20!” When looking back on what you did, what you shouldn’t have done, or what you’re sure you ought to have done, could have done, would have done… you may have reasoned a better outcome with your 20/20 hindsight vision. But it’s a lie. Hindsight isn’t 20/20.

Hindsight isn’t 20/20 bcz we don’t know what God knows. You don’t know if you would have had a perfect outcome had you been able to exercise your now perfect 20/20 hindsight bcz you couldn’t have known all

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Thanks Giving Is Here

Thanksgiving is here, I heard someone exclaim. And one might immediately wonder how it came so quickly again this year. I mull this over (and, yes, I do marvel that another Thanksgiving is already upon us), I think: Is Thanks-giving here? I mean… here, here. Here in my heart, here in my life, here in my thoughts and in my words.

I stop and take a mental inventory of my days of late. How thankful have I been–or have I displayed thankfulness at all? Is thanks g-i-v-i-n-g a characteristic plainly obvious in my life? Is thanks giving part

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Drawing a blank

Those shots are blanks. They roar at us or past us, but they’re blanks. God’s mercies are new every morning and His faithfulness is above the heavens. I may feel wounded by the shots of those blanks, but I mustn’t think they’ll destroy me — I must take those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ.

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You can’t afford to not pay attention.

I know. The last entry I wrote was 7 months ago. Hounded by voices that tell me I’ve lost mine, by regrets that prevent me moving forward, and various time/emotional demands that drain creativity, I come to my blog and draw a blank — or am shot with one.

But… again, here I am. I love to write. I love this platform. I love the connections it’s given me through the years. And I love that the Lord has given me a whole bunch more time and has absolutely dumped His great mercy and grace over me every day of

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The Finished Work of The Cross

The finished work of the Cross is profound. It is finished, Jesus said. He had finished the work God had created Him to do, to complete, to finish: Unto us this child was born, unto us this child was given.

“And they crucified Him…” Matthew 27.35 This is the finished work. This is what Jesus came to do. He came to die — die by the will of God, to shed His own blood, to lay His life down. In that moment a great transaction was accomplished. The wrath of God: satisfied. In that moment the rending of the

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Intentional DeCluttering

Over the last month or so, living with less clutter, I’ve experienced some unintended benefits of my intentional decluttering project. Not the least of which has been ease of housekeeping and/or ease of moving from one daily activity to another with very little preparation or tidying. Having been the mother of many children for decades, home organization has been paramount. But even with all my planning and organizing, I still had clutter.

In this process of decluttering over the last couple of months, I’ve mulled over some of the “clutter factors” and how they came to be.

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Tidying. You’re Still You.

The problem with attempting to make dramatic changes, or to carry out new resolutions, or most anything, really, is that we’re still the same people with the same proclivities, habits, personal styles, bents. The tidying, or in my case, the project of eliminating clutter, only lasts as long as the determination/work/project continues. No matter where you are in the project of eliminating clutter or tidying, you’re still you.

You’re still you. I’ve had to repeat this to myself many times in the last couple of weeks as I see myself “dropping my guard” on eliminating clutter. Just recognizing

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Clutter is Relative

There’s a saying, One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. I kept this in mind from time to time as I proceeded through my month-long activity of eliminating clutter in our home. I also had in mind a couple of other thoughts that sort of guided my process: I’m doing this for me and our family and clutter is relative! After an initial confrontation, I purposely blocked out a couple of thoughts: cost/origin of the item and other’s opinions/style. I kept in mind the goal of eliminating clutter, living in our new normal, gratitude for the past activities/needs/possessions,

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Open Space

One of the challenges I’ve been experiencing as I have been going through closets, cupboards, and drawers specifically — and rooms, in general is newly exposed space: open space! If you’re either a Queen Of Quite A Lot or a Saver Of Quite A Lot, you just might find yourself in a quandary. No, not the first day, not the second day, but a couple of weeks after you uncover OPEN SPACE in your home, your natural tendency will be to FILL it! Fill it back up. Quickly.

Don’t do it. Resist the urge to fill space. Now,

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