As summer has ended and the leaves are changing colors I feel a strong need to get back to basics. I yearn for a more simpler time. A time before the INSTANT lifestyle. A less rushed time. A time to reflect and just enjoy what life has to offer. I know I am not alone and I am sure there are others that have felt this way.
The past year has me looking for ways to cut back on spending or just a way to make ends meet. I am aiming for a simpler life and this change will not happen overnight, it will happen in baby steps. This will be my journey and I will attempt to document it within these pages.
My first goal is to do something productive every day. I must make a list and of course I will need to refer to it once in a while, something I tend to not do very well.
On my list:
- Make a plan
It doesn’t make any sense to start this journey if I don’t know where I am starting from.
- Reduce the clutter in my life
Nothing is more time consuming than trying to maintain the clutter in our home, car and life. Why should I spend hours cleaning, picking up or looking for something. By decluttering I should be able to reduce the amount of work I make for myself and keep everything in it’s place. If I don’t use it or expect to use it in the next couple of months, I must get rid of it. Sell it, donate it for the tax write off, give it to someone who needs it.
- Cook from scratch
Actually this one is not new for me. But I need to stock my pantry. I plan on making my own mixes (I used to do this years ago) instead of buying store bought. Mixes are of course a time saver and by making them myself I can control the ingredients. I can make pancake, brownie, cookie, rice mixes enough for 5 or 6 meals and store in containers and just add eggs or other liquids when ready. Just using basic ingredients like flours, salt, sugar, yeast, baking cocoa and dried herbs are always more cost effective than store brand pre-made mixes. I can also control the food we will be eating and getting rid of unwanted additives, food dyes and preservatives. I will post my mix recipes once I begin the process and I will add more as I go along.
- Ditch the disposables
This is not only good for the budget but will reduce the carbon footprint that I make. I have cut back on using plastic wrap but I would like to eliminate it all together. I has probably been nearly two years since I eliminated all plastic storage containers in my kitchen and switched to stainless steel and glass. I use canning jars quite often, but still find myself using plastic wrap and plastic storage bags. Even though I do use plastic storage bags, I wash and reuse them as often as I can. I need to reduce my dependance on paper towels. I have cut back on using them but I need to cut back more. I will switch to cloth napkins and towels. I have lots of fabric pieces that I can make some napkins and maybe in my decluttering mode I will find things in my closet, like the cotton dress from 10 years ago that doesn’t fit or that older extra set of sheets.
– Knit some more dish cloths. These make great gifts and Christmas is coming (all too soon it seems). I will post the directions in a future post.
– I plan on making some cloth snack bags and lunch bags to carry lunches in. I am working on the pattern and once I come up with the easiest way to make these I will post the instructions if anyone is interested.
– Make and use mesh or cloth grocery bags and produce bags. I can make some prettier bags than buying store ones.
This is a short list for now, but at least it is a start. Now it is time to get busy. I am finding that I enjoy sitting here typing and thinking about all that I need to do instead of physically doing what needs to be done. You will find that I am a horrible procrastinator and maybe I need to add this to my list…
I know I do it…..I know life would be simpler if I didn’t…..but I just can’t get beyond this. This will be my biggest hurdle in my efforts to get back to SIMPLY BASIC…….