Saturday, March 19, 2016

I'm really having quite a terrible fun time downsizing!  
Yes, trying to remain positive whilst saying au revoir to half my clothes and such.
This week several bags were transported to Retails, the local thrift shop I 
support - they use their profits for animal welfare and spay/neuter programs in the area.  
Also, the clean out of the potting shed last week ended up being a
positive experience. A neighbor's caregiver, when driving by, asked to take
 several items we had piled at the curb for city pickup, for her son to repair and
 paint. We happily loaded them into her car!

Remember, after grabbing the lovely Marie Kondo's newest book Spark Joy
 while buying wine at Costco HERE - in January - I made myself a promise that
this is the year I would start sorting through, re-organizing, and finally letting go
 of stuff which didn't 'spark joy' in my life.

It will be a slow process, perhaps because we actually are tidy, and are not
 true hoarders, so if you came to visit you would not be shocked, or tripping
 over things, well I hope not!  But, in a small home with limited space,
we do need to cut back on storing more than we can use, be it paper 
towels, black socks, or bottles of wine!

We do not live in the countryside isolated from modern life.
We have so many malls, shopping centers, grocery stores, big box stores,
garden centers within a short drive, some within a 10 minute walk, that anything
 we might suddenly need is almost on the doorstep.
Raleigh is close to the top of every 'best place to live' list - you can see the list
HERE and yes, we'll welcome you if you decide to move here along with the 
thousands of new residents arriving annually . . . . .be prepared for great
living and true southern hospitality.


  1. Oh Mary, I salute you and know exactly what you speak of. It does get easier. I would keep much less now and am trying to get rid of it. I just wish I had the money back that I spent on it all. I'd have to shield my eyes from your piles outside.

  2. I need to start getting rid of things that don't spark joy. I read that book as well.

  3. Wonderful spring bouquet in that cozy corner of your home. Clothes. There are way too many here. It's a chore that I need to do for sure.

  4. Mary, I admire you. I'm trying to do more of the same, but it so difficult for me. I'm a keeper, plain and simple. It is organized though, so I do know where things are. Still, much more than I need. It's just that when I let go of something, invariably I find myself wanting said item for a specific purpose later on. I'm also very sentimental.
    I'm working on it though as I continue to send things to the thrift store often. ;-)

  5. What a fun post. Your photos continue to blow me away. Which, brought me to this thought...I should hire you to decorate our home! :) hee Simplifying can be fun and challenging. However, I love the idea that it teaches to truly evaluate the things around us and what truly matters in our life today...and on down the road.


  6. I need to take inspiration from you and Mary above. I am afraid I am very much like her. So I must get my hands on Marie Kondo's books and maybe they will get me going one of these days. (If it is worth noting I weeded and reorganized my "reading lists" this morning while hubby was out of the house. Because of health issues he is ALWAYS here and I find it hard to work on my own projects.) Maybe a lame excuse is better than none?! Oh, dear.
    Farm Gal in VA

  7. I HATE clearing things out. But I know I should do it more. Mrs B is much better than I am at keeping on top of things. I'm deeply impressed, Mary. Love those photos!

  8. I need to do what you are doing, Mary. I'm not so much a hoarder but someone who lets things pile up until it's so daunting I don't want to face it. I applaud you for donating your things to help animal welfare. I make monthly monetary donations out of my love for domestic pets and this is a wonderful way to do it as well.

    Small spaces make organization essential and eliminating clutter, as much as we hate to part with beloved pieces is essential for comfort. I'm learning that.

    I think Raleigh is a lovely place to live--I so enjoyed our visit and believe we will be there again and soon! And Asheville---how can anyone not love it? Touristy? Well, I wonder why?!!

    Love to you and Bob. We hope to visit in July and hope you guys are around after your visit to England.


  9. Dear Mary, downsizing is never easy. We live in such a small community that I have to take my clothes to the next city. I wouldn't like to see my sweater walking through Walmart.

  10. I haven't read that book, but trying to downsize too. Can't wait for a big garage sale in June or July. The room where I am storing the garage sale stuff is getting full. I also keep reminding myself I can always buy something again if later I find I need it afterall.

  11. Selling our Florida house has forced me to down-size in a big way. Eventually we will have an estate sale when it is sold, but in the meantime I am cleaning out drawers, cabinets and closets. It is hard to part with things!

  12. First off, your photos are stunning. I love the gold baubles in the bowl, btw.

    Well done on your continued decluttering! Marvelous. I have yet to read my Spark Joy book as my son absconded with it shortly after it got here, having loved the first book of hers that I let him borrow. :)

    We are the same way--fairly tidy and not pack rats yet even in our small townhome rental, we managed to full up an entire two car garage with tables with stuff on them for a yeard sale after going through that book. now we are realy to do another decluttering! I Love the freedon it brings.

    So, with that state of mind, I think you would appreciate something I read the other night on Pinterest about traveling. The author mentioned how buying experiences, even if a bit more, is so much better in the the long run that collecting stuff only to give away years later. One wise woman there being only a young college student abroad in England.

    Yes,Ihave read and heard how lovely Raleigh is. We woudl so love to visit there some day for a holiday of that general area, but as it is, if I have vaca, I tend to save it up for seeing my aged mother and fam back in England. (Really need to get out and see more though!)

    You know, Fort Collins is also listed as one of the top places to live in the US, many times its come in first, like in Money Magazine. (See for example: On one hand, that thrills me, but on the other, it also rather depresses me that this is apparently the best it gets here! REeally?! :) I think too being that I am such a city person, I am not into all the colorado things like hiking and camping in particular but understand that that is all very accessible here.


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