2016 in Review

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Trying out a new shampoo bar!

This year snuck away from me—can’t believe that my last blog post was in May!

We’ve passed the phase of constantly paring down our items so this year’s theme was making smarter, intentional purchases and keeping our stuff levels under control. Here’s a quick update of what we’ve been up to over the past few busy months.

1) Downsized to one car. After experiencing a number of issues with our second car, we downsized to one. Learning to be flexible was frustrating at first, but we’ve come to love sharing a car. We’ve saved money on insurance and gas and we’re learning to communicate, plan, and sacrifice for each other. We live close to both of our offices, so sharing a car is simple at this stage of our life.

2) We have decided to purchase a house. We’re in the beginning stages of the process as first-time homebuyers. It’s been awesome to see how our perceptions of a house have changed since adopting a minimalist lifestyle. Instead of a place to store more stuff, we want it to foster community and provide a bit more space for our hobbies. So, stay tuned. Updates will be posted as we pursue this purchase and learn a whole ton in the process.

3) Removing toxins and plastics. I’m slowly replacing household items with non-endocrine system disrupting, natural, sustainable options after encountering some health issues earlier this year. So far, my favorite switch is from conventional hair products to a natural shampoo bar and vinegar rinse—my hair is so light and shiny! I don’t plan to return to weighty, toxic shampoos and conditioners.

4) Wardrobe and changing seasons. Only a handful of items were purchased for my fall/winter wardrobe; a new coat, two dresses, and a long-sleeve shirt. In the past, a new season required a new set of clothes and a whole afternoon figure out how to fit a giant box of seasonal clothes into my closet. Now, it only takes five minutes to switch out my seasonal clothes since they’re stored in small box in my closet. Easy-peasy!

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My handmade donut notecards

5) Hobbies. I recently started making greeting cards and stationary to sell through my sister’s adoption fundraising Etsy shop. As a graphic designer, I love challenging myself to create unique and lovely things using only paper, scissors, and an exacto knife (no die cutting machines). If you’re interested, check out the shop to see what I’ve been up to and visit my sister’s blog to follow their adoption journey.

While reflecting on this busy year, I continue to appreciate the fact that owning less has opened up so much time for relationships, personal time, and developing hobbies. Instead of drowning in laundry, dishes, and constantly picking up, I’ve had time to pursue what I love!

2 thoughts on “2016 in Review

  1. Thank you for sharing the many benefits to downsizing. Your willingness to be open and vulnerable has influenced many to take a good look at what is important in their lives. Keep posting and encouraging those of us who have a pack-rat tendency.

    Like

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