holidays - minimalist

The holidays are coming – Minimalist (part 3)

We’ve talked about Holiday Gifts and Holiday Meals.  But what if your family is trying to practice restraint when it comes to the gifts and the meals?  It’s hard to tell grandma not to buy the grandkids presents and it’s hard not to sample all of mom’s cooking!

Three easy rules about too many gifts

It’s so much fun to unwrap everything but I always have a minor panic when it comes time to find a home for all of the lovely presents I’ve been given.

  1. Ask in advance for the givers to be conscious of their giving.  For adults, maybe charitable donations instead of presents.
  2. Clean out in advance.  If you are expecting new clothes for yourself or new toys for the kids, try to purge items in advance of receiving new ones.
  3. The one-in-one-out rule.  For every new purse or stuffed animal, put one in the donations bag.

Three easy rules about too much food

Dips and cheese are my biggest weaknesses.  So I try to use veggies with the dips and count the cheese as my protein so that I feel more balanced after a meal and not ready to sleep for 12 hours.

  1. Balance your day / week.  It isn’t about going without; it’s about making healthy choices for a balanced diet based on what you expect to be eating later.  A green salad with lean protein for lunch if you are headed to a big dinner party later.
  2. Balance your plate.  Fill about half of the plate with the freshest options you can find, and then treat yourself to the goodies too.
  3. Balance your mind.  It’s the holidays, and a couple of extra cookies are not going to derail the universe.  Enjoy yourself and forgive yourself and eat better tomorrow!

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Don’t forget to check out these beautiful holiday card templates!

organization and minimalism

Organization and minimalism

Do they go hand-in-hand?

I consider myself a pretty organized person, and an aspiring minimalist. Sometimes I succeed in both goals and sometimes I struggle. We all do. However all we can do is keep trying.

I love this little nook here; it is almost my idea of minimalism. It is clean and orderly but not plain. The simple white walls highlight the items and the beautiful greenery adds life to the area.

If I realize I have accumulated too many new clothes, I go through my closet and pare it back down. I try to stick to the “one in, one out” rule but it’s not 100%. I have followed a number of minimalism blogs for years now, and everyone has their own definition of what minimalism means. And this is the truest facet of minimalism — that it means something different to each person. Granted, there are plenty of examples of extreme minimalism (such as Andrew Hyde’s “The 15 Things I Own”) however that it certainly not realistic for most people. I know that I have more than 15 things in my purse alone!

One of the first blogs I discovered several years ago was Miss Minimalist. I absolutely love this post of hers, “Don’t Organize Your Clutter”. It changed the way I look at both organization and minimalism. Once I stopped and thought about it, it made so much sense to me. That true organization can’t exist without decluttering first. Her concept of “one” is quite intriguing.

One of my other favorites is Courtney Carver of Be More With Less. I’ve even gotten the chance to hear her speak! She is most known for her concept, Project 333. if you are new to the world of minimalism, I highly suggest you take a look at “How to Become a Minimalist“. She offers a handful of nice little ways to start minimalizing your life.

In addition to these overall minimalist articles, I have also looked into minimalist skincare, minimalist makeup, and a minimalist packing list. I look forward to discussing these specific areas in the near future.

I would love to hear your comments on what you want to minimalize in your life and what you have been successful in minimizing so far!