Monday, August 09, 2010

Paring Down to Minimalism. Or, at the Very Least, Functionalism.

The theme around our house lately has been “if you don’t need it, throw it out!”

It’s amazing how much stuff one accumulates in a lifetime, or even a year. As Daniel pointed out recently, he and I share a minimalist aesthetic, but we just have too much stuff to live that way. We keep trying to go truly minimalist, though. Perhaps the small space of our townhome will help us conquer that. (Let me qualify that statement: we have a minimalist aesthetic but a functional necessity for “stuff” because of the sheer number of reference books and/or craft supplies we require for our respective livelihoods or moonlighting entrepreneurial activities, not to mention the cooking utensils necessary for the cooking sessions we enjoy!)

He threw out stuff when he moved out of his parents’ house. I threw out stuff when I moved out of the house I shared with my former roommates. We both threw out dozens of trash bags of papers and things we no longer had room for or wanted when we moved out of the apartment. We gave away several carloads of usable items to Goodwill. Yet we are still throwing things away and adding them to yet another “Goodwill” pile. Seriously. I feel like someone who should be on that show “Hoarders.”

We worked on our craft room over this past weekend, and at last the sorting and throwing away is paying off. Even as we continue to pare down to the true necessities, we are putting up shelving and unpacking the supplies we use or will use on a regular basis, along with the artwork and doo-dads that mark moments of our individual (and joint) histories. It’s a great feeling to know that in the very near future, we will be living in our home, and not just unpacking it.

Other than the joy we will experience upon unpacking the last box at last, I am really looking forward to filing my bits of paper and story ideas and scribbled outlines for writing that I intend to get to one day. For the past 15-20 years of my life, my writing has been filed away in moving boxes, sometimes staying in those very same boxes for years until the next move. This move is IT. Those papers will finally have a home in a filing cabinet, and the manuscripts in progress will have their very own document boxes that match our decor. I’m so thrilled!

1 comment:

Dave said...

I've moved a few times the past few years and it was so liberating how much stuff I threw away or donated.