Sell the crap. Live a life.


One of the biggest deals at the moment is that we have begun selling most of our things. Years ago I was inspired by Adam Baker, who sold everything he owned in order to backpack with his family, but never really took it that far. But one day my husband and I were just discussing our ‘future life’ and suddenly, it all just resonated with me.That night I went back and re-watched the short documentary, I’m Fine, Thanks! (on Hulu Plus if you want to watch it!)

And then, just when someone in the film said “I climbed the corporate ladder only to learn it was leaning against the wrong wall”, I wept. I was finally ready.

My husband gave me one rule: If you don’t love it or if you don’t use it, it goes. It’s funny that HE’S the one telling me this since I have been ‘the minimalist’ for 4 years (Okay. I admit. I have truly sucked at being a minimalist. There. I said it out loud.) I’m sure there will be a lot more deciding on what comes or goes in the near future since the house was listed on the market just two days ago and we’ve already had two showings. That usually means we are on the right path.

But, where will you go? What kind of house will you buy? Why are you selling everything?!? People have asked.  And for once, I have no answers. No real answers, anyway. Some possible answers. We’ll rent. A house. No, a condo. Maybe just a small apartment until there is no more debt. In Arkansas. In Tennessee.  No, probably Wisconsin. Oh well. There is still so much up in the air (a very UNCOMFORTABLE PLACE TO BE, I might add!) which I will journal about as we move through this life-changing process.

Overall, we’ve decided some of our decisions are because:

1) We want a life of experiences, not stuff. This article pretty much sums it up but to give you some brief insight: We had our son when we were entering our forties. I want him to look back on his life and remember that great trip to Sequoia National Park or Canada. I want him to take music lessons and skating lessons…and any lesson he wants to take to learn a new skill. (As do I! I want to learn so much!) I don’t want his (or my own!) butt planted in front of a 60” television watching 200 channels his entire life.

2) We want to say “YES” more often. Yes, let’s go to the park! Yes, let’s go swimming. Yes, let’s drive to the ocean. Yes, let’s live a life of PASSION! Instead of a life full of “Wish we had the money to do that” or “Can’t today. Gotta clean all this stuff I no longer love.”

3) We want to be creative. It’s hard to be creative when you feel trapped. I truly believe that. Look at the proof: Just making the DECISION to live a more simple life led to me opening up WordPress again – after nearly 2 years! Simplicity frees the mind and opens it to creativity. I mean, I could go places and see things if I wanted NOW…but between cleaning out the garage, folding baskets of clothes, and sorting through piles of papers….we don’t have time (or energy. Remember: we’re middle-aged 🙂 ) I really enjoy knitting, but when you feel trapped by the things you own…knitting for the afternoon seems like a waste of valuable time. But, in fact, the opposite is actually true. What truly is a waste of valuable time is sorting through unused items (again!) while my son sits alone trying to entertain himself. We both want to spend time and energy fostering our right-side of the brain (Lord knows it needs it! I’ve used the left side of my brain for so long I forgot I even had another side.)

As for where we will live? I still don’t have a clue. But for some reason, I feel at peace with this. We’ve even looked at Winnebago’s online. I’m not so sure about that idea….but I’m not ruling anything out at this point.  Besides, there are many steps before living in a converted school bus would even become an option.

Besides, I can’t trust the process if I rush the process, you know? So, Bird By Bird is how we choose to move down this path.

And so, for today, I just have to get rid of a few items or stack them in the corner for a yard sale. Getting rid of these items is a day-by-day adventure (see our page called Minimalist Game – so far I’ve let 36 items go. And this doesn’t even include the crap I’ve simply thrown away!) Thanks for hanging out with us!

Change in the Heartland


So, it has been awhile, has it not?  I have no real excuse other than I’ve strayed from my simple life. I took on too much responsibility, took in too many items because the blank spaces needed to be filled, and all that left me shaking my head in dismay. “Freedom,” my soul whispered. “Find your freedom.”

Then, out of the blue, my husband begins to talk about change. Consider selling everything. Do something totally radical. Why? I asked. “Because we can.” he said.

Because we can. Because we can. Because we can. Because we can!

You know, I’ve been in the business field for a long time. Two graduate degrees and management theories galore to prove it. I know a business can succeed if they base decisions on values; if they have a mission / vision statement. Why can’t people have those to?

We got to work sorting out the values we hold dear: Simplicity, Knowledge, Experiences, Financial Freedom, Creative (Artistic) Expression. We began thinking about the most important ‘job’ we have: To raise our son.

The problem isn’t that we didn’t know these things. The problem is that we have allowed other ‘stuff’ to creep into our life preventing us from focusing on our values and truly giving our son a life for which he will look back and, hopefully, be grateful.

So, join me again, on a journey. A journey to create the life we’ve wanted. A journey to enable us to place a higher priority on those values we cherish and to spend time with the one we hold dear.

Stay tuned for some radical, epic activity.