Posts Tagged With: lifestyle

Happy Space

When I became a Romantic Minimalist I decided
to take matters of space into my own hands.
I was no longer a victim to consumerism.
Deprivation didn’t enter into my thoughts.
I just wanted to keep the important things
and leave the chaos and stress behind.
My people have asked me how I did it.
How did I part with so much stuff?
This is how I became a Romantic Minimalist.
I have never looked back…

I watched my children have to clean out
their Grandmother’s house after her death.
It was painful watching them have to go
through all that stuff and try to decide
what to do with it. There were arguments
among their father and his siblings as
well as manipulation. It was sad.
This event coincided with an illness of
my own that took me dangerously close
to my own death.
I thought about all of the things that
my children would have to take care of
in the event of my own death.
That changed things in an instant.

This is how I did it:

1) Clothes
I cleaned out things I hadn’t worn.
Next, I narrowed down to black as a basic.
I threw out shoes that hurt my back.
Practical clothes were kept.
I kept what I loved to wear.
The donations were constant.
It felt good.

2) Crafts
I narrowed down my crafts to one project at a time.
Embroidery was dear to me.
My Grandmother had taught me at an early age.
I donated every other project.
Now I embroidery quilt squares.
When I finish I will choose one project next.

3) Housewares
I sorted out the gadgets we didn’t need.
Appliances and baking supplies were given away.
When I want to bake I buy a mix.
I keep a 9×13 pan for everything.
We gave away our extra sheets and towels.
The china is going next.
Have you ever used your china?
Is it sentimental?

4) Paper
As a writer and a reader I decided
to save trees and space too.
We went digital.
Instead of buying books we bought Xoom tablets, and smart phones.
We now get free classic books.
Notes are taken on colornote on tablets and phones.
No clutter on the desk or counter.
We gave our paper books to others.

5) Consumables
We buy less processed food.
Basic vegetables, rice, oatmeal,
and fruit are on the menu.
Simple meals with little preparation.

I have chosen simple beauty now.
No expensive jars of cream.
Olive oil, vit E, and lemon juice
are my choice for skin.
I cut my own hair and limit
makeup and beauty products.

In every category I thought
about what I truly loved.
The things I chose had meaning.
Sometimes practical was important.
What I found in the end was amazing.

Happy space was there. I choose to live
knowing that there are few things
left behind without meaning.

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Basic Professional Wardrobe for Women

Recently I have transferred to a new job and require a professional wardrobe.The challenge for me was to transition my closet without spending too much or getting carried away. What I came up with is a simple solution that is versatile and elegant.

Bottoms:
Black pencil skirt
Gray pants
Black pants

Tops:
Black pullover sweater
Pink pullover sweater
Plum pullover sweater
Cream lace tee
Black lace tee
Print shirts (3)

Shoes:
Black pumps
Black boots
Black Flats

Coats:
Bright Red Winter Coat
Black Trench Coat

Accessories include a string of pearls, a Tibetan silver chain, pearl earrings, and silver hoop earrings that change each outfit. Each piece mixes and matches with everything else. This is simple, elegant, and professional without breaking the bank or advancing consumerism.

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Comparing Yourself to Others is Dangerous

We all do it. You find yourself people watching and then suddenly you are comparing yourself to what you see. It’s dangerous business there. As a professed Romantic Minimalist I struggle with comparisons at times especially in the context of feminine beauty. I look around at the number of women that have long hair and I find myself wanting to hide my head in the sand or the nearest bathroom. As I age I struggle with that less but it still comes around regularly. What to do? It’s easy to say it doesn’t matter. I am secure in a relationship. I don’t have anything to prove. The minimalist side of me begs not to be sucked into advertising for creams and hair products that will make me ageless. I find that when I do get sucked in and buy something I feel guilty every time I see it on the shelf. Many times I throw away things because I can’t stand to look at it another moment. The contented feeling I get when I keep my “stuff” at a minimum is worth the effort to train my mind not to think so much about appearances. I’ve discovered that one way to stay beautiful to everyone is to concentrate on giving instead of worrying about what I have. I may not “own” the title of most beautiful woman by appearance but I intend to compete in the class of most beautiful being. There is a difference. Should you feel the need to compare yourself to others, keep this one rule: “Never compare the inside of you to the outside of someone else.” All of those so-called perfect people out there may look great on the outside but struggle on the inside. Compare yourself to the people that you know are beautiful on the inside-not perfect, but beautiful. Those people that give to others, that make a difference, that choose to smile and be positive, and the people that are happy at the end of the day are the ones that you should look at deeply and see the path that they choose. You don’t have to mimic their actions but take note that giving to others is what makes them beautiful.

Comparing yourself to others is dangerous. It makes you believe that you are separate, and isolated. You are not. We are all pieces of the same puzzle. If we were all the same shape, look, and feel, we would never make the whole complete. Celebrate when you are not like all the rest on the outside and smile knowing that we are all one. There is good in all of us. Never be afraid to let it out.

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Save Money Without Pain

Losing your job or having to make due with less money due to the economy may seem painful at first. There are some sensible ways to save money without suffering.

* Stop drinking caffeine. Coffee and tea prices have skyrocketed. Stop drinking them or cut down on the amount you drink every day. Quit buying lattes. Seriously.

* Stop smoking. Taxes on tobacco were raised as incentives for people to stop smoking and it gives the government more of your hard earned money. Quit.

* Don’t support anyone you don’t need to. Your children up to age 18 are you obligation to take care of. After that they shouldn’t be living off of you. If they still live with you they should contribute based on a fair portion of the household expenses. This applies no matter if you have money to burn or not. Be an adult.

* Don’t buy a vehicle you can’t really afford. When buying a car make sure you can afford the payments and the maintenance. Don’t forget taxes and license as well as insurance every year. Get beyond a vehicle being a status symbol for you too.

* Stop buying processed food. Buy whole foods and buy in bulk if you are able. Oats, flour, sugar, and beans are all cheap staples that will make multitudes of meals. Also, consider that a piece of fresh fruit costs less than a candy bar and is healthier for you. The earth will thank you for less garbage too.

* You don’t have to buy multitudes of clothes for your job and your life. Choose brown or black as your basic color. Buy two pair of pants in that color, two pairs of shoes, and five shirts that are different colors that go with everything. Done.

* Learn to cut your own hair or go to a beauty school and ask for the new student haircut which is usually free or at a reduced rate. Keep you hair simple. Find a style that doesn’t need fancy products or appliances to keep neat. Be practical.

* Eat less meat. Eat rice, beans, oats, and vegetables more often. Eat meat, fish, and poultry as well as dairy less. This saves you money now. It also keeps your heart healthy and you won’t ever have to be on a list of medications.

* Don’t be afraid to move. Move to a better location that’s more economical to live if you can. This may take some planning but make things better in the long run. Also, moving means move your behind. Walk to the store, the park, work, or just as exercise. Moving your body saves you money by staying healthy and saving gas.

* Stop buying everyone gifts. Make gifts for each other. Write a letter to each loved one for Christmas telling them what they mean to you. Donate time to charity instead and spread the happiness to more people.

* Be beautiful inside. Stop buying the newest thing that is bragging it will make you young again. Be a good person. They will remember you. No one remembers vanity

What steps did you take to minimize and save money?

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