We ain’t goin’ nowhere

On Saturday, April 30th, we finished our Cycling Savvy training and biked an additional bit to see one last apartment.  After 4+ months of looking, and little luck, it was decision day: give notice that we would vacate by the end of May or sign a year-long renewal.

We took it right down to the wire, but in the end, we renewed the lease on our one bedroom apartment for another year.

What does this mean?  Well, we haven’t quit looking, but as my due date draws ever closer, it’s becoming more and more likely that our little apartment will be accommodating an additional person (albeit a tiny one) come July.

On the upside, smaller spaces are more efficient than larger ones, we’ll be saving money, and we have a VERY GOOD reason for keeping baby stuff to an absolute minimum.  We will carefully screen any new item that comes into the apartment.

Right now, my goal is to continue looking for unnecessary stuff that we can eliminate from the space, while finding better ways to organize what remains.  In a recent post on clutter, the Eco Cat Lady shared this minimalist standard for decluttering, “if your house burnt to the ground, would you replace this item?”  As much as this makes sense, for most people, it is actually very hard to follow through on the conclusions to this question.  You almost need to actually HAVE a fire and be FORCED to start from scratch.

Funny thing is, this kind-of happened to me in high school, when my bedroom caught fire.  And while I would not wish for something this dramatic (and potentially dangerous), there is a certain appeal to having a perfectly clean slate.

In my mind, moving to a new place was going to somehow provide that clean slate, a rather unrealistic assumption, given that we would just be moving all of our current “stuff” into a new, slightly larger, space.

We are making some progress — a pile of stuff to take to scrap metal, other stuff for donating — but it feels SO slow.  About that clean slate . . . .


  1. EcoCatLady says:

    Thanks for the mention and the link, although I’m not sure I’m worthy of it.

    I totally can’t believe your bedroom actually caught fire once. That sounds terrifying! I hope you weren’t in it at the time!

    I just filled car load number three and will be taking it to my favorite thrift store tomorrow (the one run by our local Cat Care Society – I get to de-clutter and help cats all at the same time!) I keep remembering when I was in my early twenties, and everything I owned in the whole world could fit into the back of my car… my how times have changed!

    But it’s getting SOOO much easier, and I’m discovering that I really like giving things to people who actually need them. Today I took Princess’s little outdoor house over to the Alley Cat rescue place, along with some food that she’s become too picky to eat. They were just thrilled, and it made me so happy to know that instead of cluttering up my garage, it was going to help a homeless cat.

    The “world as storage locker” concept is also really helping. I just have to keep reminding myself that if I decide I really need an XYZ, I can always go get one. For example, CatMan has developed a huge thing for popcorn lately. I have tried every popcorn making method known to humans with mixed success… some batches come out great, others turn into charred disasters with little rhyme or reason. So after a more than a year of this, I’ve finally decided that an air popper would be worth it. The thing is, I had one in college, but gave it away after it sat unused for many years. Now, in the past, I would have considered this to be a great tragedy, and evidence of why one should never get rid of anything, but now, I think it’s no big deal and I’ll just pick one up when I’m at the thrift store tomorrow. A few bucks now and then is a small price to pay to have somebody else store all of the junk for you.

    Best of luck with your de-cluttering!

    1. Melissa @ HerGreenLife says:

      “World as storage locker” makes a lot of sense, although it also makes me think that collectively we have too much junk. It’s also one of the things that appeals to me about some kind of communal living: having one popcorn popper, food dehydrator, lawn mower, etc. — all of those things that we don’t use all that often, but are nice to be able to access.

      I’ve had good luck with popping regular popcorn in brown paper bags in the microwave. I’m guessing you’ve tried that? Try making just a small batch, not too much at one time, don’t add any oil, salt, etc. until after it’s popped. Start with 3 minutes, but pay attention in case it stops popping sooner.

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