life after the birds fly the coop

Archive for the month “January, 2016”

Minimalist February

It has been my intention for a couple of years now to live a more minimalist life. This has included a home down-size, a reduction of hours spent doing things that aren’t important to me, and a more conscious “living in the moment-content with what I have” lifestyle. It’s fair to say, I’ve veered off course a bit lately.

What’s brought me back in line is in large part due to my daughter, Lauren, and her friend Jane’s devotion to a “spend less February,” so I am encouraged to jump on their bandwagon. Now, realize they are post-graduates, so my budget is a tad different, so my numbers are adjusted. That said, though we try to live within our means, we are still indulgent in many ways.

For the past year after settling into our new home, I’ve tried to keep my counters clear and my walls barer than they’ve been in the past. However, in January, due to a “nesting instinct” that comes to me every January, I’ve been purchasing various items on Amazon (dangerous) and Joss and Main (more dangerous), filling up blank wall space, adding pillows to furniture, and re-cluttering my pristine kitchen counters. Not to mention feeding my clothing and shoe addiction. It’s time to SLOW DOWN!

So here’s my version of Spend-Less February:

I will NOT spend money on:

  • nails (I’ve never done much with my fingernails anyway, and I mostly wear socks in the winter, yet I’ve continued with my monthly pedicures)
  • alcohol (no purchasing of wine during the week. Wine drinking only allowed on weekends, which will help with my Lenten promises I intend to make and my weight loss goals.)
  • eating meals outside the home (except for 1 time per week for dinner with a $50 maximum – no lunches)
  • clothing, jewelry, accessories, shoes
  • hair care (outside of one haircut)
  • skin care (if you saw my bathroom, you’d see I have more than enough already)
  • home décor
  • movies at the theatre or On Demand (Netflix has many good options)

I WILL spend money in the following ways ONLY:

  • bills for January spending (dang)
  • dog care (Biff isn’t at fault here)
  • dinner with friends (2 commitments already on my calendar)
  • groceries (cap of $125/week) I know that sounds high for two people, but kids do come home and I enjoy good, healthy food. No impulse buying at the store (i.e., don’t shop hungry and stick to my list.)
  • yoga (because I will need something outside of shopping to make me feel good, and it’s good for me.)

Wish me the best of luck. I hope to feel cleansed, healthy, and sane at the end of the month. I’ll recap the results in March! And perhaps I’ll set a new goal!



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