Category Archives: goals

Determined to be Spring Minded

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I can’t believe Monday and Tuesday have both come and gone already! We’re nearing moving day and it seems like every day as I’m checking things off of the to do list, more pop up or hours disappear on tasks that I thought would only take minutes.

5 more days…

I’m still making time for some crocheting even if I haven’t posted in a couple of days. It’s been cold and dreary, so in order to cheer myself up I’m making a variety of spring things for my new stitch markers! I’m tired of the grey, so I’m going to focus on these cute, bright reminders that warmth is on the way. They’re a nice small project I can sit and complete while I’m getting things done around the house. I’m averaging one a day, so I only have two so far. I really dig them! Hopefully as my pace picks up and more items drop off the move list, I’ll be able to complete a couple a day.IMG_20150325_142713

I’ve made a few stitch markers in the past, but I haven’t been entirely satisfied with them and it’s usually because of whatever it was I made to hang. I do love the lobster claws as opposed to the open hooks though. They attach easily with one hand, don’t fall off, don’t get caught on my yarn while I’m working… really efficient. I’ll keep y’all posted as I make more. I’d like to complete a set of 10. I think that’s a manageable goal for me right now.

I also think that’s where my focus is this week. Making manageable goals to not let my creative habits slide to make room for my obligations.

I’m determined to be productive and celebrate my creativity!

I can totally get all of the things done… you just wait.

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The Art Of Minimizing

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Living out of a suitcase for a week will remind you just how little you really need day-to-day. Now that we’re home and beginning to pack for the big move, it’s time for us to make some decisions.

What do we really want to take with us?

Every time we move, I go through this. It’s amazing to me how much I accumulate without noticing! Scraps of paper, notes, books, receipts, keepsakes, old coupons, yarn, art supplies, shoes, plasticware… the list goes on. I understand how it happens in the moment, but when I start thinking about having to pack and move whatever it is the meaning begins to dwindle… and that’s when I know I don’t need to take it with me. Who really wants to lug all this crap around with you everywhere you go?

I remember the first time I really had to minimize. I was moving out of the first place I’d rented. I had been there for three years (looking back that’s the longest I’ve lived somewhere until we move into our new house… whoa…) and I was moving from a townhouse into a one bedroom apartment. From 1600 sqft to 790 sqft. The thought of downsizing scared me. I was going to have to throw away all of these things, these pieces of tangible evidence that I was here for the last three years. These things when I looked at them represented all of the growth and independence and experiences I had. If I threw them away, how would I still hold on to those parts of myself?

Room by room, I lamented each scrap of paper, ticket stub, and magazine filling bag after bag for trash pick up. I donated all of my clothes except what would fit (neatly) in my dresser and closet and any pair of shoes that didn’t fit in an over-the-door organizer reserving two rows for belts, gloves, and hats. Once I realized that most of the clothes I donated either didn’t fit or hadn’t actually been worn in a year I started to feel better. I only packed what was coming with me in bankers’ boxes because they’re small and easily stacked. The things for the storage unit got the bigger boxes and I limited the furniture to whatever would fit in the 5’x10′ unit. The more I was able to organize and see the spaces around me, the more I started to feel powerful. I felt less like I was losing control and more like I was taking control of what was going on.

I started to realize that all of these things were anchoring me in place. WIthout them I could go where ever I wanted, whenever I wanted. They were crutches keeping me comfortable in that place and I didn’t want that for myself anymore. I wanted to feel the uncomfortable spaces!

My next move from the one bedroom apartment to a spare room in a friend’s two bedroom apartment, I downsized again. This time it was 790 sqft to approximately 100 sqft. I got rid of the storage unit, put any kitchen supplies I had in my dad’s spare room. Everything else I had would either fit in my four drawer dresser, my nightstand, my over-the-door shoe organizer, my 4’x2′ closet, or under my bed. That’s it. I’d done it. I’d pared down to the bare essentials and was enjoying it. If I wanted, I could load everything in my car and go someplace. If I wanted to buy new clothes, I had to switch out old ones. No new hangers. No shoving clothes in drawers.

I could look around and breathe and it felt amazing.

It’s not just about organization though. It’s knowing your priorities, knowing your needs vs wants, knowing what you’re capable of, and knowing how much you have to be thankful for. There’s a bar set when you know your bare minimum where you realize that everything beyond that is a bonus. Like the gravy on your mashed potatoes! I looked around my hotel room last week and realized I was content with a suitcase and a few toiletries. I’m blessed that I have those things. I’m even more blessed for the gravy at home.

I look around our rented condo. We’ve only been here for a year now, but I can see the piles of things, of evidence that lay around like little arranged still lifes reminding us of various moments. Free duffle bags, old wine bottles, tupperware, cards, clothes I don’t wear… ugh! I can’t wait to minimize. Our move is more than just relocating. It’s a whole new life that we’re starting together. If we’re moving forward, why take every little thing from the past with us? How can we be thankful for what we have when we don’t know what we need?

Let us cast these anchors, set sail, and be grateful for the waves that carry us along.

I was blessed last week to be able to cast off my extras, experience new people and places with my best friend, and to have a home to come back to… and my dog, of course.

The affirmation this week: The less I have the more grateful I am.

I have about three weeks to pack this place up. Let’s go!

And we’re off…

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com·mit·tee

kəˈmidē/

noun

  1. 1. a group of people appointed for a specific function, typically consisting of members of a larger group.

“the housing committee”

synonyms: board, council, brain trust

“she appointed a committee to look into the busing issue”

I lovingly think of my group of close friends as the “itty bitty positivity committee”. When I am around them I can’t help but to feel happier than I had been in the minutes before seeing them. They are encouraging, bright, clever, and kind and I couldn’t be more blessed. It’s taken me a LONG time to develop these positive friendships. I’ve let go of a lot of relationships that either stifled growth through efforts to control or were so rooted in mutual unhappiness that all that was created was more unhappiness. It is never an easy decision to let go (and for me it usually comes after years of ups and downs), but I’ve come to learn that it’s up to me to guard my happiness. I can always do better and with that in mind I am making it a point to focus on my happiness and create positive habits. The more I find blessings in each day (even if they are very small), the more it becomes a habit.

It’s so easy to talk about what’s going wrong. Talking about what’s going right can often feel like bragging or make us nervous that if we acknowledge the good things it’ll hurt more when they disappear. I don’t know about y’all, but I’m tired of being afraid of judgment and loss!

So here’s the deal. I want to be strong enough to enjoy my blessings as they come. Each week I have to make a list of things I’m grateful for that happened the previous week and find positive affirmations for the coming week to focus on. Each day I work towards my happiness whether it’s 30 minutes of running, crocheting a new project, cooking a new recipe, or training my dog and I’ll tell y’all all about it (cause let’s face it, the accountability helps).

Let’s go!

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