Winter is getting old, and it’s time to brighten our spaces, minds and spirits again! I would suggest that one of the fastest and easiest ways to do that is to shed all of the weight our homes and bodies have gained over those long, dark, cold days spent in the coziness of our houses over the last few months.
Spring is just around the corner (and so is Daylight Savings Time, woohoo!), the days are getting longer and the weather warmer. Before you open the patio doors and fire up the grill for summer parties, take a few moments each day this month to prepare your physical and personal space for the next season of life.
The purging game is back by popular demand! I absolutely loved this project and so did many of you. The feedback on the Minimalist Game was overwhelming – those of you who participated back in October were visibly excited about your progress and results – eager to share your great stories. And many of you who did not participate voiced that you wished you had! Well, here’s our chance to experience that wonderful accomplishment once again or attempt this challenge for the first time.
Here are the rules:
For each day of the month, we must toss, sell or donate the corresponding number of items. Today, March 1st? Toss, sell or donate your first item before heading off to bed tonight. Tomorrow, March 2nd? Toss, sell or donate two items. March 3rd? Three items…By the end of March, our lives will be 496 items lighter! It can be anything – refrigerator magnets, awkward scraps of unused Christmas wrapping paper, the sweater that you swore you’d wear this winter that has remained in the closet untouched for yet another season. Feel free to share your progress with the world and get ideas from others on the journey by posting pictures to Instagram or Facebook using #minsgame, too!
I will confess that I got a head start on the purging game this round. With our move tentatively scheduled for the 14th of the month (pray that contract finally comes through, if you think of it, please?! It’s been WEEKS!), my anxious, compulsive self took the opportunity to start sorting, tossing and donating immediately. So far, my count is at 159 pieces! Can I really make it to 496 a second time?? This turn, I really have made Troy contribute to this game.
I also have a second change I’ve made for this round: E’s belongings are no longer off-limits. I did everything in my power last round not to touch her toys, books, or everyday items, but in the spirit of testing out a few of Kim John Payne’s simplicity pointers, I’m going all in and making E’s world a part of the challenge.
First up? Kids’ books. Payne argues that kids should never have more than 5-6 books at their disposal. Having a small number of storybooks to look at will force them to focus and absorb rather than skim and move on! And though it drives us moms crazy mad, the repetition of reading the same stories over and over (and over and over) again is incredibly beneficial to our children – their knowledge of words and concepts will develop far faster, they gain a sense of security from the familiar, and find freedom and peace in a few less options. SO! I’ve boxed up all but 6 of E’s books and stored them for future rotations. I’ll admit, this was by far the most unexpected and scary challenge presented in Payne’s Simplicity Parenting! Let’s see how E and I do with it!
Second? Payne challenges us to take a hard look at our children’s toy chest and pare down the kids’ options by about 50-75%! The idea is a bit overwhelming since the number of toys each child has can vary greatly! I’d like to argue we’ve done a good job of not offering too much, but the challenge is on my to-do list for this month, so I’ll offer more of Payne’s insights soon and let you know how that one goes…
Join me for as many or few of the above challenges as you see fit (and try to get your friends involved! these activities are always more successful when done as a team…). I look forward to heading out on this adventure with all of you again this month! Can’t wait to hear about your progress.