26 January 2012

Organized Simplicity - Tsh Oxenreider

Remove the Mess, Add Meaning
Simplicity isn't about what you give up. It's about what you gain. When you remove the things that don't matter to you, you are free to focus on only the things that are meaningful to you.
This was a recent free offer from Amazon.  Like so many people these days I am not just interested in living a simpler life I am practically obsessed with it.  Lately I have been very intrigued by what is called a "French Closet"---basically it means that you own only a few key pieces of high quality clothes that fit you perfectly.  Well, if you knew me personally you'd know right away that owning only a 'few' clothing items has never been even remotely a possibility.  I love fashion.  I have loads of clothes that take up three closets and we aren't talking about those dinky little niche in the wall closets.  The stand alone shower in my en suite?  It's been converted into a closet because I simply ran out of space.  

My little family and I live in a quaint but small cottage where space is a premium and my hoarding of the closets has really been challenging.  A few years back I purged the kitchen of all non essential gadgets and it felt liberating.  Now, I am the proud owner of a few well seasoned cast iron skillets and great set of knives and you know what?  I do not miss the Cuisinart or the toaster oven or the panini press, the George Foreman or any of the other stuff I donated.  

I was off to a great start on this path to simple living.  Enthused and optimistic even.  But somewhere along the way I simply stopped purging our stuff.  Out of sight out of mind.  Until, at least, something else came into the house and it was time to find it a home and I realized all the cupboards were taken.  The closets were full.  We began talking about selling our sweet little home and buying a bigger place.  Well, thank Heaven that sanity prevailed and coincidentally this book popped up on Amazon.  Actually, I believe that God answers all prayers and that this book showed up free just when I was struggling with our space issues was, in fact, NOT a coincidence but that is neither here nor there.  

It probably took me two days to read this book and it was just enough motivation to get me going.  Every week since reading this book I've made a trip to the local charity to drop off more of our unused stuff.  Stuff we didn't even know we had.  Stuff that was piled up on the tippy tops of the closets, stuff tucked into the dark recesses of the laundry room cabinets and yes, my friend lots and lots of clothes.  The process is still ongoing but I always joke that our home has lost a lot of weight these last few weeks and she looks great for it.


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