My Minimalist Experiment
My kids spent this summer with my parents in South Carolina, and while they were gone it gave me an opportunity to go through the enormous amount of toys, clothes and junk they’ve accumulated over their combined eight years.
It’s hard to comprehend how much stuff there is until you put it all out on the floor, and then you’re trapped because there’s no walking space. There was a myriad of McDonald’s Happy Meal toys, (most of them broken because that’s what happens five minutes after they’re taken out of the package) stickers, stuffed animals, cars, Barbie and My Little Pony accessories. By the way, if you don’t have a little girl, you just do not understand how a brush the size of a dime is NECESSARY for the care and maintenance of her precious pony.
Most toys I was able to give away since they were still in decent condition, but my kids had outgrown them. A few things I had to throw away. I figured no one wanted a Princess Sophia doll with a black eye. The black eye is because my then 3-year-old daughter thought Sophia needed makeup. So she took a pen and scribbled on her face, specifically her eyes. Yeah. I tried everything to get it off, and it just wasn’t happening.
I also cleared out three bags of paper trash from my daughter’s room. I’m really hoping she doesn’t end up on an episode of Hoarders one day, because she loves to hold on to paper. Paper that she’s drawn pictures on, papers that she gets from school, paper that she’s written down lists for when she’s pretending she’s a waitress or a school teacher. AAAAAHHHHH!!! Really, her writings and drawings are super cute, but I don’t need one hundred drawings of me with “crazy” hair.
The best thing was that my kids weren’t around when all this was happening, because I’m sure that each toy I decided to give away would have immediately become their favorite. Tears and squabbling I’m sure would have ensued. What’s also fortunate is my kids can’t really read yet, and they definitely don’t have unsupervised access to the Internet, so they won’t see this post for a long, long time. When they returned to their very clean and neat rooms, they didn’t even realize there were toys missing. If that doesn’t prove they had too much, I don’t know what does.
Now in case you think I’m picking on my kids, my room was not spared from this de-cluttering process. I went through my closet and gave away a huge amount of clothing, as well as blankets and sheets and towels that we no longer need. I also gave away all the books we’ve already read that are now collecting dust on the shelf. I consider it spreading literary knowledge.
What brought all this on? I’ve discovered that clutter really stresses me out. I’m not the best housekeeper, (see my previous blog post) but I do like things to be clean and neat. The more stuff there is, the more difficult it is to clean up.
I’m not a full-blown minimalist, but I’m working on making some changes that will make life simpler for my entire family and bring some peace to our daily routine. For those of you who shop at Goodwill, please know that probably half their inventory right now is from my family. Enjoy the previously loved treasures; I’m learning to let them go.
-Amanda Scott, Program Manager for the Liberty County CVB
The Right Blend Blog is written by three different authors employed by the Liberty County Chamber/CVB. As we are able, we rotate weeks and each write about our individual experiences, opinions and let our writing reflect our personalities and creativity. All content provided on The Right Blend blog is for informational purposes only. The owner of this blog makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.