But my sd card in the camera is being wonky. I am taking the pictures, and will post them as soon as I can. I promise.

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So as far as “minimalism” goes, I find most kids’ clothing lists a bit excessive. I mean, 16 pairs of clothes for every-day use?! I don’t  think my boys have that NOW…and they have two much. They usually cycle through about four outfits each, and although I am going to leave them with more than that, I would like them to have much less than they do. Caelin doesn’t like “hard” pants aka jeans. He is cute in them, though, and so I will (for now) leave him with two pairs that I can roll up and he can grow into. Same for Tristan. The bulk of their wardrobes will be soft, comfy clothes that are decent looking.

I am not numbering undies and socks…they seem to need as many of those as they can get. 😛

But for each boy (Caelin, almost four, and Tristan, almost two) their list of clothes is as follows:

Two pairs of warm pajamas (summer sees them sleeping almost nude or with a teeshirt)

One sweater

One hoodie

One heavy coat

Four short-sleeved shirts

Five long-sleeved shirts

Two pairs of shorts

Four pairs of pants

Two pairs of shoes (one a size larger, one a size smaller…They favor the smaller shoes, I like them in the bigger)

One pair of winter boots

They have a small box of toys and some dozen or so board books (along with a bunch of paper books that do NOT go in their room. 😀 )

Each has a crib mattress…Caelin’s is on a toddler bed, Tristan’s is on the floor.

Each has four blankets: a crocheted one, a quilted one, a fleece one, and one for trips.

In their room is a table serving as a fortress. 😀 Toys and clothes are being kept in the built-in drawers in their room.

This seems like so much when I write it down, but really, it is much less than they had, except the books and toys, which were heavily culled last year and are still reasonable amounts.

 

Full room pictures:

 

 

 

 

 

I do not like “isms” but it really is the only thing I can think of to describe what I am doing in a single word. You may remember that last year I had a short stint in my “No Excuses” series…I feel like this is an extension of that. Last year, I pared down some things but really focused more on organizing and rearranging the stuff I had to fit into my two bedroom mobile home and still allow us to live. I loved it, and it looked really nice. As time has passed and circumstances have changed, though, I feel ever drawn towards a simpler life of ease and comfort. Lessening my things seemed the next logical step in my path to freedom from material possessions.

I may have mentioned it, or you may have noticed from the before pictures in the No Excuses series, but I am a bit of a hoarder.  I struggle with saying no to people giving me things, even when they are not things I will use and enjoy. Stuff accumulates in my house like flies on dung. As a teen, I was in therapy for hoarding, and I struggle with it daily. I have no misconceptions when it comes to how the stuff makes me feel, and I know I have a problem with it. The thing that helps me control it is seeing Hoarders on TV, I am so afraid of becoming them. They ruin their relationships, families, and mental health over STUFF. This new series will be titled “Project: Discard” and will follow me through this particular time of prioritizing and organizing.

 

The rules? If it is broken in any way, it goes. If it does not have a place, it goes. If I have many of them (with a few exceptions) it goes. If I am holding onto it because it was a gift, but serves no real purpose in my life, it goes. If at anytime I question “Should I keep this?” it goes. Period. Once I am “done”, if there are things I still have no certain, wonderful place for, they go, too.

 

Now, I am not actually going to be discarding a lot of this. I need to have a little money from this endeavor, and I have a storage shed outside that has some space….so anything I could make money off of will go in there, with one caveat. It all has to fit. None of this “well, I will keep this in the house for now” or “I will use it someday” malarkey. For instance: Scott used to love roller blading, and he did it all the time. He has some really nice blades. I bought a pair years ago hoping that we could get into it together. But you know what? In the five years I have known him, we have roller bladed ONCE together, and he has used his only a handful of times…all from three years ago or longer. They serve no purpose in our lives, take up space, and cause hassle. They will be being sold…hopefully to someone who will use them and not be constantly afraid of ruining them. The TV causes so much strife that it and everything that goes with it is being sold. I would rather eat store boughten bread than the stuff made in a machine, so I am selling that, although it was a gift that I appreciated. Tristan won’t stay in a crib, so the playpen and crib can go (not that any of my kids ever used those things before they were too big, anyways). Some of our furniture that will not be sold and would be expensive to discard will be broken down and burnt for heat.

 

I am excited for this next chapter in my life and hope you will join me. (Pictures will be provided, of course, lol)

So, I am planning a move, a lifestyle change, and jumping into the deep end of minimalism, all at the same time. We are praying that the Lord will see fit to provide us with not only a motor home to live in, but the means to live for a time as traveling vagabonds. 😛 We are hoping sometime this summer to pull roots and throw out the sails, taking a chance on where we go and what we do. It is incredibly exciting and a bit terrifying.

Since we hope to settle down far away from our home state of Oregon, we have no way of saving things here for later. We could send it forward and store things for a time, but that would mean knowing where we will land, in the end. similar to the Israelites, we are going out in faith, looking for the land the Lord will show us, knowing we have a place in this world and that it is not likely to be here. It’s a little bit romantic and a whole lot of crazy, and sounds totally fun.

 

This is all subject to change at a moment’s notice. Circumstances are such that I may have obligations to stay in the area longer than I hope to, although Scott is confident that we can work around any potential issues we may have leaving here.

 

However, both of us feel this is the path we are being drawn towards, and so talk has been going in that direction more often than not. For instance…our TV. Scott LOVES the TV, I can live with or without it. We are selling it, and not buying another one. The dog goes, I love her and we want to have her irregardless. Clothes are dropping to a bare minimum, as well as my much-loved books. In fact, only a few books will be making the pilgrimage with us…favorite Bibles, Christian books, Children’s books. I adore my books, and it will hurt to part with them. Probably like it will hurt Scott to part with his TV. It is nice in many ways, a motor home comes with beds, a table, appliances, all in one neat little package. Some have a couch. We can live in it for as long as we want and/or need to, and we can travel as we like, while having our home right there at all times.

 

But in other ways, it will be hard. Smaller living space, much less things to occupy ourselves with…but even that can be a good thing. With carefully chosen items, we will have much more time to work on our family dynamic, and lots more outdoor space to explore. Our lives are bound to become very interesting if this falls into place, and I can’t wait to see where this dream takes us and how far we take it. My heart swells with excitement at the thought. 🙂

 

Hold us in your prayers, as there are hurdles to overcome and pieces that need to fall into place in order for this to happen like it has to. If it doesn’t, then we know it is not in God’s plan…but so far, it seems as though it is. 😀 I can’t wait.

Didn’t I start this blog while Scott was away, in late winter, no propane? LOL. Well, here I am again, after ups and downs and craziness…seems life really does happen in circles. I moved back into my home yesterday, propane has freshly ran out, and the electric is about to be shut off, and we have an eviction notice. Oy. LOL.

 

Things will work out, I am sure, but it was just funny that I am in the same position that I was in when the blog began.

My husband and I have had a crazy marriage, rife with abuse, infidelity, and laziness. We both have pasts and have hurt each other by turns. We both have been through the gauntlet in our respective histories and unhealthy people cannot have a healthy relationship. It just does not work out like that. In December, I left my husband and moved with my children into my mom’s home. Scott flipped out, he never thought I’d leave, and had no idea where I was mentally, nor did he realize the extent that our past together had hurt me and my ability to love him.

I had no interest in reuniting, and felt perfectly content to remain single and raise only the two little boys the Lord had blessed us with. In fact, my highest aspiration at the time was to get to a point where we could talk civilly and raise our little ones separately without hurting them more than they had been. I chopped my hair, stopped wearing coverings, and had a hard time talking to God for a bit. I felt horrible, like I had failed God, my family, and myself. I had no idea that the Lord may be using this to do good in our lives, but faithful as always, He was busy in the background, working and turning both our hearts towards Him and each other.

Since I have left, my husband has found the Lord. In his desperation to keep his family together he came to see who he had become somehow…I was also going through my own transformation. I saw clearly for the first time what he had done to me, but also how I had been acting. Somewhere in the pain, I saw what I had been doing to my family for years…responding to things he was doing in wrong ways, not communicating in the slightest, and allowing him to be a man neither my children nor I needed around us.

A very good friend sent me a book to read: Fascinating Womanhood. I began to see real motivation behind what he was doing, and hearing the cry behind his actions. I began to see that he was only a man, and I only a woman, and that we had lost the love and compassion through our own actions. I resolved to someday do it better…and decided that when I found a new husband I would do it right from the beginning and be a good, strong wife. Allow him to be a husband, and not hurt whoever it would be. Ha!

I had no idea what was coming, that is for sure. I have begun to find myself again…learning that I do not have to squelch the gifts that God bestowed upon me just because another person doesn’t get the passion I have for those things. I began to write again, and draw, and crochet. He went to therapy, started attending church, became saved, and began working the Love Dare.

 

Gradually, and over time, I have realized that maybe, just maybe, I can start over in my marriage. Maybe we can go about it right this time. Maybe we can learn to love each other again and not tear each other down and cause pain to the one who we promised to share our life with.

While I do not know where this may be going, and how this story will pan out, we just may have the ability, with the Lord’s help, to resurrect what we could have…and be married forever, in love forever. Raising our children and loving and working through our problems with a grace and power that could rival anything thrown at us.

 

I look forward to seeing where this journey takes us.

So I have started this crochet thing for the store my mom works at. I don’t fully understand what the point of it is, but I am having fun at least. 🙂 It is five 10″ squares a month, and I suppose it will all be in a blanket at the end.

 

#1 for February…

Double Crochet (solid color/1 color only)

These instructions use a size H crochet hook. You may choose your hook size, but the finished square needs to be about 10″x10″.

Ch 35 Loosely

Row 1 (right side) Dc in fourth ch from hook and in each ch across. Note:  Mark this side as the right.

Row 2: Ch 3 (counts as first dc), turn; dc in next dc and inn each dc across. Repeat row 2 until piece measures aprox 10″, do not finish off.

Work Edging: Starting in a corner, Ch 1 work 3 sc in same corner. Work sc evenly spaced across to next corner, work 3 sc in that corner, and continue until you have circled the square. Join with slip stitch to first sc.

 

I will see if I can get batteries for my camera to get a picture of the square I did.

 

So life is in a bit of an upheaval right now and I probably won’t be posting for a while. Stay safe, sane, and bless you. 🙂

I have canceled my Facebook accounts. It sucks up all my time and I am constantly nervous something I do not want posted will be. 🙂 Just a notice for anyone who reads my blog and wonders why I am not on your friend list anymore…it’s not personal, I promise. I hope to begin being more regular here, but no promises…I have toyed with stopping this for a time, as well, although I will not do that at this moment. 😀

So I know I was going to stop using this. I know I was going to just have a site. I know I am always changing things up and probably spin heads doing it, LOL. But I have decided I like my blog…I just want a site as well. 😀 SOOO….I am keeping this blog rolling, and will link to my site here, and to here on my site, so that it is all easily connectable. 😀

 

Expect more posts here in the near future as I continue trying to figure out my online presence.

 

And now, back to your regular programming. 😀

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