The second thing on my radar for 2013 is : Simplify.
I've been feeling the need to apply all sorts of simplification to nearly every area of life these days. Granted, this could be directly related to having a baby almost 9 months ago, which instantly added a lot more STUFF to my house, my car, my purse, my to do list... etc. So, the 'stuff' is feeling a bit overwhelming. But even beyond the stuff/things, I've been yearning for more simplicity in other areas too. But first, let's tackle that stuff.
My Closet.... is overflowing. It's small to begin with (which I'll compensate for with some gratitude), so I need to stay on top of it's contents or it gets out of hand pretty quickly. I have a dear friend who has subscribed to the "One thing in, one thing out" rule for as long as I've known her. And she's serious about it. I've been shopping with her and seen her mentally decide what's going to go, before she'll even decide to buy anything new. She's one of those
My other problem (which you may have guessed already), is that I'm entirely too sentimental about my clothes. I keep items based on:
1. How much I paid for it (too much)
2. How little I paid for it (awesome sale)
3. The reason I bought it in the first place (for that wedding, that anniversary, the summer I was a whole size smaller, my honeymoon...)
4. The brand it is (certain brands I cannot get rid of... anything I bought at Anthropologie; which usually also fits into one of the first two reasons too.)
5. The ethereal and all-encompassing... "I will need it one day for __________." (a wedding, a fancy date, to paint in, a camping trip, a bike ride in the rain, an 80's costume party, high tea, going to the rodeo, a murder mystery dinner... and the can't be denied: for Halloween.)
You see my dilemma. Also... add in the leftover maternity clothes (that I thought I'd purged by now, but keep finding random items), the bigger post-baby items, the things that fit me now, and the pre-baby clothes I'm not quite back into. It's a mess, people. A big, cluttered, crazy, random, dis-organized MESS!
So, my work is cut out for me. It's time. It's been on the docket since January... and now it's April. The seasons are changing, it's the perfect time. So, really. I'm gonna do it. I'm gonna be brutal. It's the perfect time. Right? Right. I'll try and document and report back, but I'm not promising anything. Just that I'm gonna do it.
Kid's Toys... are everywhere. Our living room looks like a pre-school. Or a day care. Either way, it's not cool. I love my kids to bits and pieces, and I don't have a problem with toys in the living room or other such evidence that children live here. Because, well, they do. I don't need Pottery Barn photo-ready living spaces (it's just not something I can maintain without losing my mind), but I also want evidence that adults live here too! I'd like to cuddle up with my hubby at the end of a long day without sitting on a squeaky toy, having a board book fall on me, or stretch my feet out onto coloring books and baby dolls.
So, I will be purging the poop out of the kid's toys, stuffed animals, broken crayons, and random chotchkies (there's not real poop in their toys. It's just a saying... like I'm REALLY going to totally and completely purge their toys. Just in case some of you were getting scared). And then I'll create a place for everything... so my little lady can put things away. I've realized I can't expect her to clean up, if there isn't a decent place for everything to go.
Food... that's really food. We just started feeding Baby B her first food, and it's easy to be thoughtful about what I'm feeding her when she's such a pure, blank slate. However, it made me realize I should be more concerned and careful about what the rest of us eat too. Not that we're way off the deep-end of junk food heaven, I can just get a little lazy. So I'm working on staying away from processed food. Cooking more. Keeping things simple in the kitchen. Using high-quality, fresh ingredients and let them work for me. Simple recipes, that are easy and quick.
I'm trying to opt for real cheese in my mac 'n cheese vs. powder in a box. I'm trying to read labels more, and not buy things that have stuff in it I can't pronounce (or has a number in the name). I'm trying to experiment more in the kitchen, and be ok with it (and myself) if things don't turn out perfectly. Notice I used the word "trying" a lot. This is a major work in progress. It's not happening completely just yet, but I'm on the way. Plus, I'm pretty sure all the jelly beans left-over from Easter have a lot of those 'number' ingredients in them. That's ok. Life is more fun with jelly beans.