Category: Simplify

Double 7 – Thursday!

We are at day 4 of my 7 day thing,

I haven’t ever heard about a home that doesn’t have a junk drawer or two, and this house is no exception 😉  I have more than one…

Today’s task; declutter my living room catch all.

Here it is in all it’s glory – yeah, I know, not pretty!

FROM THIS

Well.. I might as well get on with it – hang in there, folks – I’m going in!

(a hours or so later..)

All done. Oh, that’s looking a little better now, isn’t it?

TO THIS

MINUS ALL OF THIS:

2 picture frames
1 diploma from Microsoft
1 calculator
1 remote control
1 notebook
1 lanyard
1 US simcard
1 Micro memory card
6 pens
1 pink marker
2 cd covers
5 umbraco’s
Bunch of paper to toss – count as 2
Bunch of paper to shred – count as 2
1 empty box
7 unused Valentines cards
8 envelopes
15 Ziploc’s and small plastic bags in assorted sizes
2 packs of memo cards for old diarys
10 plastic items
2 journal covers
1 reusable net
1 box of cool looking paper clips – which are horrible to use
(goes to show, just because they are cool don’t mean they are practical)
2 boxes of push pins – leftover from my office days
Bits and pieces – count as 2

 = 

78 items out-the-door!

7 Day tally = 360

Hey! Didn’t I just pass my goal? Nice!
Still have 3 days to go. I wonder what number I’ll end up with 😉

Grand total for 2017 = 1377

Until tomorrow!

Double 7 – Wednesday!

We are at day 3 of my 7 day thing.

Since I started my blog, I have been slowly downsizing my closet. (it seems to be the thing we women do 😉 )

I’ve probably gotten rid of about 50% or so, since I started my declutter thing on this blog in 2014.

Since I left the workforce (soon to be two years ago – my how times fly), I don’t have to dress up for meetings or change from work stuff to everyday wear everyday. These days, I pretty much live in the same type of outfits all the time – jeans, t-shirt and a sweater (weather depending).

Since I changed my diet (for health reasons) last year, I lost about 15 kilos or so. It took quite a while before my weight stabilized, and since it was fluctuating quite a bit there for a while, I only got new pieces of clothing when I absolutely needed something new that fit me (it’s not that fun walking around in clothing that is way, way to big).

I’ve stabilized now.

It’s hard though, to downsize, as I have clothing that are good quality for those special occasion like party’s, Christmas and other meet ups. Even though I only use about 30-40% of my closet on my daily outfits (remember – jeans and t-shirt kinda girl). I still need to keep the other type of outfits around.

Since I happen to be kinda picky about what I wear (even when it’s only jeans and t-shirts), I’m having a hard time finding suitable replacements that fit my current size. Which unfortunately means, I’m still hanging on to a few items to many of my old stuff.

I have not given up hope that I one day will have this beautifully curated minimalist wardrobe… and the only way I’m going to get there is to forever chip away at it.

Which brings me to today’s declutter write-up!

I have found a few more closet items, to say good buy to 😉

8 t-shirts
2 workout tops
3 fleeze
sweatpants
longjohn
2 pars of thick socks
2 sleepwear
2 caps
1 wool jacket
1 sweather
bandana
1 pair of flipflops
1 pair of boots
=
26 items out-the-door!

7 Day tally = 282

Grand total for 2017 = 1299

Guess that is it for today, see ya tomorrow 🙂

Double 7 – Tuesday!

We are at day 2 of my 7 day thing, and today is a pretty easy one.

Earlier this year, I got quite a few used interior magazines for free (which is great, since I have stopped buying my own). I’ve enjoyed reading them, but I’m all done, and I’m ready for them to leave the house.

I piled them all into one of those banana crates/boxes – and looking at the half filled box, I decided I was going to fill it up! (a girl gotta challenge herself 😉 )

So I’ve been adding all sorts to the pile; old magazines, new magazines, manuals, catalogs, travel brochures and my tiny little nemesis – articles I have ripped out of magazines/newspapers etc to keep. I have written about this habit before.

Guess what, I have filled the banana box (woohoo), and there are hardly any magazines left in the house, with the exceptions of a few keepers for a rainy day 😉

I still have a stack of manuals, but they all belong to items I own. So I guess they’ll be sticking around a little bit longer!

I just tallied it all up, and here are the stats:

113 magazines, manuals, travel brochures and catalogs
114 individual articles I have torn out to keep

=

227 items out-the-door!

My 7 day tally  = 256

See.. I caught up, and now I’m ahead 😉

Oh, and my grand total for 2017 = 1273

Until tomorrow!

Double 7 – Monday!

Yesterday I mentioned I would do one more run at getting some of my junk out of the house, before Christmas.

As I meander through my days, there are times I come across items I no longer need or want, as I’m sure we all do. I have gotten into a habit of putting these items into my guestroom, until I get around to actually get the stuff out of the house.

Well my guestroom is “piling” up (well not really.. I could hide it away if I wanted it to… but… ) and it’s time to see some of these items actually leaving the house.

Gotta get ready for Christmas, you know 😉

So here we are – Day 1!

I changed my diet about a year ago (for health reasons), and there are things I no longer eat or use as part of my food preparations. So the other day I went through my food “pantry” (well, just a regular kitchen cabinet, really) and sorted out the stuff I no longer plan to use anytime soon.

I picked this time a year to do this particular declutter task, as one of the organisations I follow, “Hjelp oss å hjelpe, Rogaland” (help us to help, Rogaland) are gathering food to help people out, especially over Christmas. B took a look at his place as well and found a couple of things.

In addition to our own stuff, we did a miniature shopping “spree”, and got some Christmas cookies, candy and other more Christmas’y dry goods from the store. We wanted to add a little extra to the mix. We will get them some more a little closer to Christmas, stuff like meat and other perishables.

In addition to food, they have also asked for things like small gifts and wrapping paper. So I did a quick rummaging through the house and found a couple of unopened rolls of Christmas wrapping paper.

We just delivered it all at one of the collecting point in my neighborhood.

I love it when there is a win, win, win situation like this.

I get stuff out of the house, we get to contribute, and someone out there might get a little of the help they need.

Todays tally!

15 food related items (the extras were B’s so they aren’t really mine to count 😉 )

14 gift wrapping items; paper, gift bag, tags. Christmas cards and some string to tie it all together with.

I’ll get them some more, including some gifts to hand out, I just need a trip to Ikea first 😉

29 items out the door!

 

SO – I know this isn’t the expected 49 items. But hang in there, I’ll be catching up tomorrow 😉 It’s the total of 343 that counts, you know 😉

See ya tomorrow!

 

 

Double 7 – before the year is over!

I can’t believe how fast this year has gone, November is behind us and we are already a few days into December.

This is the time where the holiday celebrations are soon upon us, and we are busy preparing for them. And most likely the last thing on our minds are working on our declutter endeavors (beside the stuff we need to do to prepare the house for the holidays).

Well not this girl! I’ve decided I need to have one more go at it before Christmas 😉 I need to get some stuff outa here!

So I’m committing to a 7 day declutter run!

Over the next 7 days (starting tomorrow) I will declutter 343 items!

Why 343 you ask?

Well I need a goal, and I started thinking  – 7 items pr day for 7 days, but hey, that would only amount to 49 items out the door… So I though 49 items “a day” would be a much better goal 😉

Which brings us to the 343, as 7 x 7 x 7 = 343 items out the door!

Oh yeah, and just to up the ante, I’ll be throwing one extra task into the mix!

As most of you know, I’ve been really bad at keeping up on the blog this year. And I figured – since I’m committing to 7 days of decluttering, why not commit to do a daily write up of the items leaving the house as well? Then maybe I can get back into the groove of things!

So there you have it – a double goal!

7 days – 343 items out the door – 7 articles on the blog!

Let’s see how I do!

Wish me luck!

A wet summer, a trip to escape it all and some realizations!

It’s been one of those summers here on the west-coast of Norway…

I tend to wake up really really early in the morning, from the sun streaming in, and there is a moment I think “hey, this looks like it will be a gorgeous day”, before I doze of again for a while longer… and guess what.. when I wake up for real.. it’s pouring down 😦 or if it’s not raining the sun is nowhere to be found again for the rest of the day. There are parts of the west coast where I’m sure people are starting to develop fins between their toes it’s been that bad.

To escape it all, B and I took of for a few days of R&R, to the east coast of Norway, hoping the weather would be a notch better at that end of the “world”. And guess what! Turns out not only did we have a great trip, but the weather ended up waaaay better than the weathermen had predicted (so much so that I regretted not bringing shorts) 😉

It was a great little trip, we had a few days at a wellness center, visited my brother in Oslo, hung out with some friends we hadn’t seen for years in Holmestrand, took a detour to Tønsberg on our way back to Oslo. Where we stayed a couple of days, “touring” some travel shops we were curious about, and hung out with friends.

We have been back for a few days now, and I have to admit it’s tempting to get back on the road, as it’s still raining over here 😦

I’ve had a personal goal the last year or so of managing to travel with a 25 liter backpack only, and we are definitely getting there. On this trip we had one 25 liter backpack each + I had a personal item where we typically would put stuff like water, fruit, my iPad mini, a book and my journal.

The good thing… I could have managed without my personal item, if it wasn’t for the fact, that on this trip, I was bringing a bit of food, as I’m on a special diet at the moment, and I didn’t know if the places I was going would be able to accommodate that.

The bad thing.. my bag is still a bit on the heavy side 8-9 kg, but I’m working on that 😉

Big living – small luggage 🙂

One of the aspects of being on the road that I really like (now that we have managed to get down to a small bag each), is that we don’t have a lot of stuff with us. It’s easy to find everything (it’s not like there is a big bag for the stuff to hide in), and there is not a lot of stuff floating around. Turns out we don’t need much to have a good trip!

So why do we “need” so much when we are at home?

I understand that there are things we need at home that we don’t need when we travel, I get that. But even removing the essentials from the scenario, most of the time there are so much more in a persons home. Even if we account for all the “little” things we just want to keep around us because they bring us tremendous joy, more often that not there are a lot, a lot of items left that has absolutely no purpose at all.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this since we got home, as I find that my house feels kinda “cramped”. There is no reason why I  should feel this way, as my house isn’t really cramped at all.

I believe the feeling comes from how easy and light it felt when all I had to “worry” about was what I carried with me, and that the stuff in the house isn’t quite as easy to pack up, should I want to.

This is what weights heavy on me right now, wanting to have it all decluttered down to a point where I could easily pack my stuff and relocate (not that I have any plans whatsoever to relocate anytime soon… then again.. we never know what’s around the next corner now, do we.. )

I’m not sure how to address this. I wonder if I would feel better about it, if I can just get some of my heaviest “tasks” out of the way?

My three nemesis’s… documents/papers, photos and computer files, are the ones that I’m struggling the most to ever get on top of.

The biggest reason is that, in my mind, I want quite a bit of the physical paper/photos etc all scanned to my computer, in addition I have oodles of files on several hard-drives that needs sorting, so I can get down to one hard-drive and one only.

Easy, peasy you say!! Well yes, except that the computer is the one thing I really should be staying away from, as it doesn’t take a lot of computer time before my headaches gets bad 😦 And herein lies my problem! The computer issue stops me in my track, and I get super frustrated because these three tasks is what needs to be done for me to feel like I’m where I like to be delutter wise.

There are times I wish a fairy would just magically take care of this for me… you know, poof, all sorted, scanned and neatly organized on my computer.

I lieu of a fairy..  anyone out there that has any ideas for how I can (once and for all) get on top of this? Anybody???

Yes? No?

Guess, I’ll just have to eat this particular elephant one tiny bit at a time.. even if I need a couple of years to get it done.

Unless any of you want to come visit and help me out, that is… I have wine 😉

 

 

 

 

 

2015 – Goals! Oh nooo!

Oh boy!

It’s ridiculous how long I’ve been working on this post… I started it weeks and weeks ago.. and then I completely forgot all about it lurking around in the drafts folder… until I suddenly went.. oh crap.. didn’t I..??? Yeah you guessed it, I suddenly remembered that I had not posted it after all. How the heck could I forget?

And here we are, almost done with February. And I still haven’t given you the update on how I did with my 2015 goals! 😳

How can I make it up to you? Well I guess I could just go ahead and give you that update!

Before I do, I have a teensy-weensy disclaimer!

2015 turned out quite differently than I had anticipated. As some of you know, I had to throw in the towel at work, June 2015 for health reasons. Following that particular decision, a few things happened during the fall, things that was completely outside of my control, which unfortunately, took a toll on my health.

I know, I know..  it’s a poor excuse…  But excuse or not, it is an explanation for why I completely flunked on some of my goals, as you will see below.

I did have quite few goals, and even though I flunked a lot,  I did accomplish one or two…

So here it is, my (ahem) “quick” update, starting with one of the ones I actually passed 🙂

FINANCIAL GOALS
My overall goal when it comes to my house mortgage, is to pay it down as quick as possible. Every January I pay a lump sum towards the mortgage (a quick explanation of my mortgage). My goal for 2015 was to to save up NOK 60 000,- for my lump sum in January 2016. And I did it. Actually I was a ahead of schedule and had saved my yearly down payment by October. With a little extra savings in November.

I did debate paying down more than my 60 000 this January, but I decided I’d rather invest that extra money in mutual funds, as the interest rate on my mortgage is really low.

With this last payment, I’m down to 1/4th left on my mortgage, only 9 years in 🙂 Do I get a woot, woot?

DECLUTTER
I had a bunch of declutter goals. Just as in 2014 I wanted to shed an item a day. In addition to that, I had a few other “projects” like reading myself out of my bookshelfwatching myself out of my movie collection, and (the big mother of projects) photos!

My declutter goals for 2015:

  • 😀 365 items 561 items out the door – the big purges are mentioned here, here and here
  • :-/ 100 Movies – 68 movies
  • 😦 Cut physical DVD series collection by 30% – I’ve only gotten rid of one series which probably amounts to all of 1%
  • :-/ 34 books – 27 (I ran into too many I wanted to keep)
  • 😦 Photo collection – I never had a proper goal on this as I have thousands of photos, and the idea was to – keep key photos as physical photos, scan the other ones I’d like to have access to, and get rid of the rest. – All I can say…. it IS on the list for 2016 (and 2017… and 2018… and…)


ONLY BUYING NECESSITIES

2014 was a year I focused a lot on only buying necessities ( I want, I want – I want it now!!!), and it served me so well that I continued in 2015. I had some non necessities allowances though;

  • 😀 Books – buy only 10 books/magazines – I bought 6 books (4 of them e-books), no magazines
  • 😀 Flowers and plants – same level of 2014 – I cut about 60% on 2014 results
  • 😦 Eating out – reduce 25% on 2014 results we have already established that this item is something we struggle with. So it shouldn’t come as a big surprise that we flunked this one completely. Here are the statistic:
    • we ate out 39% more times than 2014
    • average cost per meal was reduced 9,5% – resulting in
    • total cost for 2015 was increased with “only” 25,9% 

Even though the results are pretty bismol (with the exception of average cost per meal) there is one upside in it all.

You see, both B (my eating out partner in crime) and me stopped working early/mid 2015. B took out an early retirement + was hit by company downsizing, leaving the workforce early spring. And I, well I started the year working only 20% until I left completely in June, when I went out on 100% sick leave.

We have found out in the past, during holidays and such, that we eat out more when we are not working. In lieu of the fact that most of the year have been non working days, for us both, I’m actually surprised that we did not increase our cost by more than 25,9%. So yeah, we gotta look at the bright side of this 😉

  • ❓ I can buy up to 10 non essentials throughout the yearHmm lets see, I bought:

    • 2 lamps at an antique fair – the lamps are going over my dining table (been looking the last 5 years – finally found some I think might be cool.. as soon as I change the wiring 😉  )
    • 1 pair of shoes (needed a pair that can work as my one pair only for minimalist travel)
    • a few Lush products to test out deodorants and shampoos in solid form (travel)
    • a couple of eagle creek super light travel pouches (travel)
    • 6 pieces of clothing – 4 replacing worn out items, 1 item filling a hole in my wardrobe, and 1 just because I wanted it…
    • 1 frame for a poster (picture finally on the wall after years and years in a roll)
    • a set of omaggio vases

Depending on how you want to count these non essentials, it’s either a flunk or pass scenario. If you look at it from a “if every single item counts separately” then, yes I bought more that 10 items. But if “each purchase count as one” (eg lush, lamps, vases..) then I guess I kinda passed? You know what? I’m leaving it to you to decide 😉


ACTIVITY AND EXERCISE

The goal for 2015 was to build up to, by the end of the year: 7 days of activity a week, with 3 of these as real workouts.

Yeah, that didn’t happen (re my disclaimer) – I did pretty good during summer with an average of 6 times a week, but I took a crashing nosedive end of August, resulting in this goal going straight out the window for the rest of the year. So yeah.. a big, big fail 😦

OTHER ACTIVITIES/PROJECTS
As always, I enjoyed my garden as much as possible. In addition I had a few other projects.. mostly helping out family and friends with little things in the house.

I did however have a bit of a larger task, helping a friend who got a new house in 2015.  Picture this, a house built in 2000 with interiour like the 1970s! Yeah, non painted pine, red, orange and yucky cream/brown/puke coloured wall… and thats for starters. For her it became quite a renovation project.. so B and me tried to help out as much as my health would allow. You know things like; painting, drawing up the new kitchen, delivering doors to be spray painted, changing door handles, cutting moldings to fit new wardrobes, more painting, installing the wifi, hanging curtain rods, “create” (rather adjust) a couple of ikea kitchen units to fit the space… you know.. all the little things that comes up during move in and renovation 😉 It turned out to be a fun and very social summer as she had lot and lots of friends helping.. oh yeah.. and there was lots and lots of great food, do I need to say more 😉

All in all, it was a great summer season!

This concludes my “How did I do on my 2015 goals”!

About time, you might say! All I can say is.. Yeah, I know 😳

CD galore!

While I was going through my living room during my “pseudo packing party” earlier this year, my music collection was one of those things that jumped out at me as being a separate tiny project for a later date.

Well the later date have come and gone, and its time to do something about the amount of music CD’s I have lurking around.

Once every blue moon, I go through all my music CD’s and clear out the ones I don’t want anymore. I tend to rip all my music to my computer first, so that I can keep the music I love, but I don’t necessarily need to keep the physical disks.

My rule is! Rip them all, but save only as many as will go into one CD case! Now that is not as restrictive as it might sound, as my CD case will take 80.

Why do I keep any CD’s at all? Well in the early days I used to play them at home as most of us did. Nowadays I stream my music through Wimp (similar to Spotify) at home, but I still have an old fashion CD player in my car. So if I want anything other than radio music, CD it is 😉

And since I’m one of the crazy people, who loves driving with the top down on the car, “singing” at the top of my lungs along with the music, you see why I just have to keep some of my favourites around 😉

For the time being I’m keeping around 50 albums, I’m sure some of these won’t make it through the next cut, but for now I’m good with that. Fortunately there are a few more going out the door… 79 CD’s to be exact…

2015-12-10 18.21.05

 

 

There is stuff…

…finally going out-the-door! Long overdue, I know 😉

About a week ago, I mentioned that Heather over at Simply Save was inspiring me, to get back into decluttering with her minsgame.  Now, my original plan wasn’t really playing the minsgame, I just wanted to get back into decluttering. To finish off my goal of 365 item out-the-door for 2015.

But I was thinking today, that maybe it could be fun to play part of the minsgame anyways, kind of a minsgame light 😉

As we all know Christmas is a big part of this month, and that holiday is a time to spend with family and friends (not decluttering), so come Christmas time I won’t be around the house much.

My plan is to play the minsgame until and including December 20th. After that, my holiday starts with me leaving for a few days to hang out with family.

That means (if my calculations are correct) that 210 items should be leaving the house this month. Now, I know a lot of people that play the minsgame, get rid of the number of items that follow the date. Something that Moving Forward is doing, right now. But me! I’ve never been good at following rules 😉 so I figure that as long as 210 items leave the house before the 20th, it doesn’t matter if it’s 1 or 77 at a time.

So here it is, my first installment of 69 items out-the-door!

Clothing – 44

  • 1 windproof fleece jacket
  • 6 t-shirts
  • 1 pair of sweatpants
  • 1 nike nylon sports pants
  • 2 thin fleece tops
  • 1 medium thick sweater
  • 1 thin cotton long sleeved top
  • 1 knitted jacket
  • 1 high neck sweater
  • 1 pair of jogging shoes
  • 5 pair of jeans
  • 1 pair of office pants
  • 6 bras
  • 15 undies
  • 1 bicycle shirts

Other stuff – 25

  • 2 drinking bottles
  • 4 egg holders
  • 2 “Pc covers”
  • 1 exercise ball
  • 1 exercise ball DVD
  • 1 pc backpack
  • 2 flower pots
  • 1 cup
  • 7 small plastic containe
  • 1 network cable
  • 2 CD disk cases
  • 1 pc cover

2015-12-07 13.23.43 2015-12-07 13.46.19

Focus…

I can’t believe it’s almost December. One more month and 2015 is over. Where the heck did the time fly off to? Just a short month left (yes, it’s a short month, with Christmas and all, interfering with normal routines 😉 ) to finish up my goals for the year.

I know there are a couple of goals that I will fail at, but there is one goal in particular that it’s time to snap back into.

For some reason I’ve been finding it hard to keep the focus up on my decluttering goal! Last year I was all for it, but this year it’s almost like I’ve lost a step and I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because I feel I have my home under control (no, not really), or maybe it’s because I’ve already been decluttering for years and I’m getting down to the “nitty gritties” and it’s much harder, or maybe my heart just haven’t been in it?

Whatever reason, the fact is that there aren’t much stuff going out-the-door! Now, fortunately there haven’t been much coming in either, as I don’t buy much, so I’m not cluttering it back up 🙂

But it’s time, it’s time to focus. It’s time to get at least some of my decluttering goals out of the way.

Heather over at Simply Save, has spent November playing the minsgame. So I figure I could take a cue from her, focusing on my decluttering goal for a minute 🙂 There is no way I’m going to be able to shed 465 items like Heather have been working on. But that’s not really the point. The point is just to get back with it, to get the stuff out of the door, to finish my goal for the year, of 365 items out-the-door.

So there you have it… over the next few weeks. The focus is… decluttering! And yes, please hold me accountable.. because it is sooooo easy to slip…