Wednesday, August 29, 2012

I'm Stufficating

It's been a couple of years ago now that I started my life transformation.
Many of you have been with me through the whole blasted thing.
It really wasn't a conscious 'I'm starting Monday' type of a transformation - it was more of a 'this ain't working for me anymore' kinda thing.

I started with the house.
Too many hobbies.
Overly decorated.
I was stufficating.

I gave the whole place a clean sweep. After I finished the house - I worked on my body - decluttering that - then my mind - decluttering that.

It's been an incredibly journey of priorities changing, shining light into mental blind spots, realizing that less is truly more and learning that a bank account full of happiness and peace is more satisfying to me than money.

Guess what?

It's time for Phase 2.

I still feel like I'm stufficating.
I still have too much 'stuff', and yet I have less than most people I know - but it still seems like too much.

I'm determined to die with next to nothing...ha!  I don't want to be one of those old ladies that passes away and the family has to come in with a dumpster and deal with all of my stuff.

This time - I'm being brutal.  Nothing is safe.  Yesterday, I opened my Tupperware cabinet and it all tumbled down on me.  Girls - no one needs 38 plastic containers.
No one.
They shall disappear very soon.

The garden is over stuffed, I've been digging things out and simplifying it.

Thanks to thrift stores and yard sales, I have way too many clothes.  I bought things that I liked but didn't love, just because they were in good condition and cheap - it's still a waste of money if you don't wear them.

It's a little (a lot) overwhelming to think of where to start, isn't it?

I started in the bathroom yesterday - cause I knew I could just finish it up quick and it would feel like I finished something.

I ended up with a garbage can full of old products, expired antibiotics and allergy meds and my extra large blood pressure cuff that I no longer need since I've lost weight.

When I realized all the money spent on lotions and tinctures that I never ended up fully using, it frustrated me so much!  I had some Mary Kay Satin Hand stuff that was at least 7 years old.  Two years ago when I did my decluttering I vowed to use it - and I never did.

It actually felt really good to just throw it away.

My ultimate dream - although I know Glenco would never go for it : -)

I've decided that Pinterest, magazines and other blogs are pornography for housewives.  I think at times, if we aren't careful - it truly promotes 'more is better' and we will constantly feel that we are less than because we don't have everything we need to set an elaborate table setting for every season and holiday.  It takes a LOT of stuff to do that. 
Am I the only one that lived for years in a state of discontent whilst reading Martha Stewart magazines?
Am I the only one that was a raging lunatic that my family didn't want to be around on Thanksgiving because I was trying to make everything 'perfect'?

Oftentimes, I think we focus on our homes being perfectly decorated at the expense of our hearts and relationships being cluttered, or bare and poorly 'decorated'.

A tidy home filled with love and laughter is the coziest of all, if you ask me.
I'm determined to only keep those things that I find useful, necessary and beautiful.  
I want to find the balance of being deliberately simple, yet cozy and warm.

Who's with me?
What are you gonna get rid of today?


  1. girl- i am dropping of bags 6 and 7 at salvation army today, and dropping of 3 boxes of baby toys to my girlfriend whos going to be a grandma. last week i dropped off 4 boxes of toys from the big kids at teh resale shop. ive been working on alot of the same things. and youd be proud to know i have finally learned to say no when somebody asks me- do you want this?

  2. Been feeling like this for a few years and have done the declutter and still will be doing more. Being an empty nester or does age have something to do with it?? I too no longer want that Martha Stewart perfection. I want to downsize to a much smaller place but as with your Hubby, mine too will not share my thoughts. We strive for many years to keep up with what we think will make life pleasing but in the end... its not the stuff. Its within. Wish I knew that before I spent all that money chasing a dream I only thought would make me happy.

    I am with you!!! I have given so much away and there is more to give. NOW if I could just get hubby on board and let me get in his office.

    GOD bless you and yours and give you peace.

  3. I was just getting ready to send you something in the mail... Hm. Maybe not. ~ Lynda

  4. Jayme, You are so right nothing is more important than family.Stuff can not love you back. I love that new word stufficating. I am going to try to rid myself of junk too. I have cut way back on even my junking trips and here I am calling my site "shejunks" I may become "shediscards" :):)Smiles to you, Susie

  5. back in the 90s, i learned a valuable lesson. i was one who didn't invite people over because things weren't "perfect." and then, i was invited to a friend's house for an evening meal. chicken was on the grill. the table was set with the hostess's grandmother's fine china with a beautiful violet pattern. and then, all of a sudden, there were 2-liter bottles, pringle potato chip cans, sitting on the table with this fine china. that one night, was one of the most enjoyable nights i have experienced with friends.... and i learned it's not about how the table's set, but who you're spending your time with.

    declutter? yeah. i did that once when we moved into a mobile home. got rid of tons of stuff. whole-heartedly believe in less is more. but somehow, you can't walk through my garage. my house is a mess. and i've got to be the one who does it. no one else around here seems interested. i'm going to make a clean sweep.... and sometimes, that means a large bonfire. :) enjoy your decluttering days. they really are refreshing. :)

  6. I started on the house stuff a couple years ago and over the past year have realized that friends in my home feel much more at ease if I am not the frantic, crazy woman making it all look nice...I am letting it go. An added benefit to getting rid of "stuff'...there is less stuff to dust! Simply is better.

  7. Love this post. I have been also getting rid of unwanted or unused things. I took 4 big bags to GW just this week! I love the new craze to redo and upcycle because not every thing has to be perfect...because life isn't perfect! Jean

  8. I just read "The Happiness Project" and had my husband start it and I highlighted the declutter part. We were doing well then "forgot". Thanks for the reminder:)
    You are really doing great!

  9. I am with you! I don't know what is up with me-but I have been sorting, and de-cluttering, too. Getting rid of my "fat" clothes because I am never gonna go back there again.

    I just did the master bath and purged- did the same thing-threw out stuff I haven't used in a hundred years. I still have another medicine cabinet area to go through.

    I gave away some craft stuff but have more to give away. Ummmm...I guess I will have to clean out the tupperware next!;>)

    You are good for me, you crazy old thang! You make me think about things that really do matter. Funny you should mention about the gardens and having TOO much there, too. My plan for this afternoon is to dig up my front bed and simplify it. It needs paring down. I have an ex-sil that NEEDS plants in her new home and she is gonna get a surprise visit this week.

    Thank you, Jayme. I miss seeing you here regularly but I love that you are living REAL life! Bless ya, Diana

  10. This is an ongoing process with me and it always feels great when I drop off so much at donation. The garage is in my sights once the temps settle into Autumn.

  11. Jayme, did you read about the book Dianna used to do JUST what you are tackling? ((Organized Simplicity by Tsh Oxenreider.))
    I checked it out from the library and found it to be a really good read and I did it right along with her...I am not a minimalist so probably still have too many things but it is the gradual paring down, and not getting one other thing UNLESS you get RID of something in its place that makes the difference...*after the decluttering. I have taken loads to Goodwill and over 150 items to a consignment. Of course a move from NC to Iowa made a huge dent in getting the ball rolling!!! lol. Good Luck! **we had to do what you described with my grandmother's farm...oy!

  12. Purged and donated clothes etc.. through the summer.
    My mom's family were savers. Mom was the only child living so everything passed to her which in turn passed to me.
    I have quit buying but would not part with the rest for the world.

  13. Actually I just put two blouses in the Goodwill basket earlier this morning. :-) Stuff, don'tcha know.

  14. oh yea...

    My hubby gives me the hardest time about all the outdated/unused bathroom closet "stuff". He's right. There is that you know... hand cream, lotions, makeup, ect.

    I've been here. It feels so good to "hold nothing back" and throw or donate.

    It's time again.

    Moving always helps...though I'm not moving anywhere, anytime soon.

  15. Girl, I am with you.

    A few months ago I took everything in the living room off the walls and put up fresh paint. The walls sat bare for almost six months. It gave me time to figure out what I really missed and what I had forgotten about. Monday I hung the things back up that I missed. The rest is gone.

    I vowed to slay my plastic container stash just last night. Forty containers with no lids just won't do.

    You make me better. :)

  16. I'm great for purging a bag a month. That's the best I can do. I'm with you. I only want surrounding me those things that I love and need. Good luck!

  17. I'm in! I've been trying to declutter for a couple of months now. It always feels great to send a bag of stuff somewhere. I do decorate less for the holidays, so therefore need less space to store the decorations too. The holiday meals are even smaller and less complicated so I don't need those special kitchen items. Thanks for the inspiration... I hope to send another bag of stuff away this weekend!

  18. I live in a 720 sq. ft. condo and let me tell you, I HAVE to be careful what I keep. There's simply no room! I am moving soon and when I move, I love it. I am absolutely brutal and get caught up in all the purging.

    We don't really need that many things to be happy. We just need to do a better job of sorting out 'needs' from 'wants'.

  19. I am! I am! I already took a trunk load of crap to Goodwill- bless someone else and helps me breathe! Angela

  20. We recently moved, just this month, and I took it as an opportunity to get rid of a lot. My family was surprised that I have already taken things to donate because I am coming across things as I unpack! I am with you on the de cluttering!
    My husband is being a good sport, as long as I keep my paws of of his stuff! I want to pack away all our breakables, we have 5 kids under 8, and he wants to have them out to enjoy. We are making compromises, it's a really great process to go through together!

  21. I love simplifying, but my husband's not quite there yet... I still kind of try to stretch him just a little from time to time though. :)

    Have you heard about Project 333 or the 100-Thing-Challenge? Here's some info...

  22. It's like you read my long weekend off from work will be spent getting rid of a lot of stuff I don't need to hang on to any longer....I can live without it. :)

  23. I have been on a ruthless purge-fest for the past year and while I've rid our home and closets of nearly half of what had been in there, I still feel overwhelmed by the clutter (that no one but myself seems to notice). I would love to move overseas or have to downsize to 400sqft like an IKEA room display, just so I'd be really forced to simplify. These are some of my favorite places for simple & small-space living:

    Good luck, lady bird!

  24. Amen Sister!!!!!

  25. This decluttering thang is a balm to the soul, and I need to do more of it. Thanks for the reminder! We've still got "stuff" from a daughter who moved out almost 10 years ago! *sigh* It's a neverending, ongoing project.

  26. Now I am in the mood to clean out, purge and organize!! ;) I am a pretty organized person overall but I certainly have WAY too much stuff. Over the past year since my son moved out and due to my husband's job in jeopardy I have used what I had in my pantry, freezer, etc. and all the bathroom products stock piled. Now, a year later and an empty pantry, empty freezer, empty bathroom cabinets and a better job for my husband I love not having things stock piled. I don't think I'll ever go back to stocked cabinets. It is so easy to plan for the week or so ahead and just buy those things at the store. It feels great to use things up and get rid of things. I just think I personally thrive when I have less clutter, less things and an organized environment. Now, don't get me wrong I still have tons of stuff I need to get rid of but most of it is upstairs in my adult children's old rooms and attic. Haha, out of sight out of mind. ;) =P I do have big plans up there this fall actually. :) Keep us informed of your progress. You are a great motivator!! ;)

  27. Oh I am with you . . . I thought there was something wrong with me, now I feel better . . . there are more than ME that feel this way!

    My problem is when to have the sale . . . I have hauled car loads of "stuff" to Goodwill, Rescue Mission and I have given things to friends, church, etc. now I have this pile of "sell stuff, Craig's List, eBay, whatever . . . ". It will take a bunch of friends to help me set up for a sale . . . and here I sit . . .

    Mid September is my target . . . this old lady is not gonna be the one whose kids have to call for a dumpster!!!

  28. How funny. I did a post this morning on the same exact thing. Time for more empty space in my house.

  29. Great post! I reached the declutter phase about five years ago. I'm still paring down, and I've given up garage sales and antiquing. Less IS MORE, more time to self, with friends, loved ones, and with God. It is freeing when we learn to be content and stop coveting what others have.

  30. For the last 8 years I seem to be on this--every 6 months kick--of cleaning and getting rid off!!!!
    I just got rid of more last week--
    and am trying now to get all my handcraft areas in control--like all the counted cross stitch items in one suitcase, all my embroidery patterns and fabric and tools in another suitcase--I have picked suitcase's for some things cause then I can bring it all out here from the closet to see everything better!!!
    this afternoon it will be fabric!!!
    though I probably will not get rid of much of that cause the price keeps going up on it--!!!
    as for the kitchen items--I have hardly any plastic in there went to all glass--I hate plastic and there is so many health warnings with plastic--just use glass now!!
    Holiday items--that is a hard one--
    I have gotten rid of and gotten rid off--am now just down to keepsakes--and I did do a hard look at what I do like for Christmas and came up with the old fashioned colors--red, green, and white--so that is what I stick with!!!!!
    so I am with you--and now need to get back to it--have fun!!!
    Hugs, Di and kitty miss gracie

  31. I am back---I have been reading you for awhile now--didn't realize that I had not signed up--
    Hugs, Di

  32. I got rid of two more bags of clothes. Went thru linens and dishes. Gone. Everything left here my girls want. Luckily they love my old stuff. I dread going thru my mom and dad's place. You may need to roadtrip for it. Great stuff but I love what I have.
    When's the camping dates??

  33. My goal is to travel light. When the hubby and I retire (years from now), I'd love to be able to live out of a travel trailer like an Airstream and just travel. I don't need 98% of the stuff that I have and I've been purging it out pretty regularly and NOT bringing more stuff in.

    I get hung up on the heirloom-type items like the doilies that Great Aunt Sophia crocheted on the boat over from the Old Country - stuff like that. I don't want it, but I can't quite get rid of it. I think I'm going to box all that stuff up and see if either SIL wants it. If not, it's got to go. I'm not a doily-type girl.

  34. Kindred Spirits girl- yes we are!! We have a HUGE garage sale every year- am always amazed at what we can pull out to sell. If it doesn't sell- we give it away to the last few people and take the rest to Goodwill- NOTHING comes back in the house. And today before work I pulled over 20 pieces of clothing that are too big to take to the resale shop- YEAH LLU!! As far as the magazines and Pinterest- I could not agree more. Stopped subscribing years ago and have never used Pinterest- I know, it's a shock!

  35. I love this so very much. I couldn't agree with you more!

    Angie from Ohio


  36. ...umm...2 maple cookies. Yup, did that already :-)

    Love the idea and I've been doing some of the same this summer.

  37. Preach It Sista!!
    I'm so on aboard wit-cha!!
    Great post!
    Perfectly worded!!

  38. for the past ten months i have been doing much of the same work. started with my apartment - donating things that could help other people (and no longer work for me), shredding very old and unneeded paperwork, limiting shopping, etc .... then i began working more on me, for me. been going to the gym a lot (usually six days a week) to help my mind and my body. lost about 35 pounds in five months (maybe 20 to go) and it helps me deal with some of the stress in my life.

    thanks for setting a great example with these things!


  39. I love this.
    I couldn't agree more.
    When I was younger, I remember having a picture of a studio. It included everything one would need to live...bathroom, kitchen, living room & bed. I've often thought about that picture. I, too, have done a lot of getting rid of and decluttering. If I can't wear it now, eat it or drink it, it ain't coming in the house. If something comes in, I have to get rid of something.
    I applaud you for starting.

  40. A resounding "AMEN, SISTER!!" I've been feeling the very same way and bags and bags of stuff has been going. It FEELS SO GOOD. Thanks for a swift kick in the rumpus to keep at it! P.S. Please don't clean out too many flowers because I think your gardens are BEAUTIFUL. :O)

  41. Jayme, darling, you and I are in this simplifying phase at the same time. I have been on a very methodical march through the house, keeping only what I know that I will use. It's not enough yet ... I don't want to alarm anyone, but my goal is for everything in the house to have a place, a real place it belongs, and for it to be found in that place exclusively.

    I started in the dining room ... like you, I knew I could get to it and have some good progress in the course of an afternoon. It's been longer than that, but progress has, indeed, been made.

    All of this is going to involve threats, since I share this house with a husband and a grown daughter. As long as we communicate, I hope all of this won't be for naught ... it would be tragic to slip back into disorder and waste all this motivation.

  42. Hey Jayme!! How did you know I have been in my closet all this morning. I have a tube full of clothes I have not worn in 2 years. Hubby had some too. So tomorrow, I am moving to my craft room. Thanks for your post!

  43. I cleaned the fridge today.'s a start! :)

  44. I loved "a tidy home filled with love and laughter is the coziest of all." Fantastic! Mind if I share that on face book?

  45. I loved "a tidy home filled with love and laughter is the coziest of all." Fantastic! Mind if I share that on face book?

  46. Jayme, we all must be on the same wave length!!! I just read a blog that suggests you go room to room and look at them, purge them and decluuter them like you were putting your home on the market to sell! I've been doing that and oh boy, what a mess!! But so wonderful!

  47. I'm with you. I'll dump my 10 year old bottle of Mary Kay Satin Hand

    Just another quick thought.
    I use Pinterest in a different way. It is a virtual pinboard, meaning not 1/1000 ends up in my house. Just inspiration for a color scheme or feel. That way it all stays on my board..where it belongs. : )

  48. I think it takes several rounds of decluttering
    to clean out a house. I am currently on my third "annual" falk cleaning where I go thru each room and declutter and deep clean. Each year I end up with less and less stuff, I feel so much lighter. =)

  49. *Fall* cleaning. Ugh! Stupid cell phone key pad.

  50. I'm with you! All last week I've been cleaning out and decluttering. It feels so good. And the house looks so much nicer. But still have a ways to go!

  51. I don't know if it was frequent transfers or giving things to my girls, but we are ok for now! I do the Goodwill donation thing a couple times a year and sometimes you hear of a family that needs a "hand up" (not a hand out) and that's another great way to clean out the cabinets. The things that surround us are passed down and loved so I won't be getting rid of those.

  52. I missed you Jayme. . .

    I love the word stuffication. . .I'm inspired, and by the way, my child did tell me she's getting a dumpster and just loading it to the front door. . .outch

    It's not fair to leave a mess . . . sew lot's of stuff to get rid of, 'cept my fabric, and quilting magazines, I have to come to terms with that one. . .

    When I first moved into this house from Fl. . . I had to wait for my furniture to get here, I waited about a month, meanwhile, we lived with an air mattress, a lamp, a few pots, 2 knives,dishes, forks. . . it was the best!!

  53. I'm in the midst of getting rid of anything I don't use and even a lot of stuff that I only use occasionally. Feels so good to say goodbye to the stuff, I agree. Today I'm getting rid of most everything in the green house... next I'm attacking the closets. Enjoy!
    P.S ...I really think you should get an agent and see about having your blog/book adventure published... at least an ebook!

  54. I feel like you wrote this just for me Jayme! I've been feeling so overwhelmed the past few months, probably years. I don't know where I'm going or what I want...simplicity...I think that's what I want. Yet, I keep going to garage sales, the mall, gardening, sewing,quilting and trying to please everyone in the process. I can justify keeping anything, but I really just want a clean sweep. Help!!!
    I've been going through closets, clothes, garage, etc. and I'm not nearly tough enough!!! Hoping to have a "mother of all garage sales" next weekend. Maybe if I clear enough space I can bring the squirrel for a!
    Excited to read more...even though I've decided to limit my comp. usage...trying!

  55. Hi Jayme,

    So when you mentioned that you had Satin Hand stuff from Mary Kay, I thought, hey, I have some of that.
    And then to my horror I remembered that it was a personal wedding gift. Our marraige is going on 12 years now... HMMMMM, I think I need to do some decluttering. ;-)

    I'm with you all the way!!!! First things first, Mary Kay Satin Hands, it is going in the garbage.

  56. I started my decluttering last year right around Christmas. The goal was to get rid of 365 items in 365 days. I'm happy to say I reached and surpassed the goal, quit counting at around 400 items. Kinda crazy to think we had so much stuff just sitting around...

  57. OMGosh is is so right on!! me! Thanks for taking the words right out of my mouth. I am featuring this post on my blog's so totally where I am, right now. Thanks a bunch!

  58. I'm with you! I'm culling out books today.

  59. Thanks Jayme for this post. It really hit home and I spent today cleaning my closet. I was brutal and came out with 6 bags for Goodwill...6. Can you believe it? You always inspire me! Jean


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