Have you ever noticed a beautifully painted sign at a boutique type shop, the ones that say things like “Live, Laugh, Love”, “I Hope You Dance”, and “Simplify”?** Sweetie and I always laugh a little at the ones that suggest simplification while urging you to buy something utterly useless. The sentiment is well placed, however, and is something that I am trying to keep in mind this year.

I have been slowly culling my possessions, taking inspiration from the 7 Things project.  This involves putting serious thought into the possessions I have around me, both things I already own and things I am tempted to buy. I am asking myself  “Do I really need this?” before I buy anything, and I tell you: just raising consciousness like this has saved me mmore than a few bucks in impulse buys!

I have made the most significant simplifications in my yarn and book stash.  The first resolution I made  was that I would only buy yarn for specific projects.  Sock yarn is, of course, for socks, so I can and will buy as much as I like.  I get to go to Webs today as we are heading up there to attend a  Sarah Vowell reading.  It’s going to be a smorgasbord of sock yarn for me, as I am hoping to get my hands on some Malabrigo, Noro Silk Garden, and Dream in Color Smooshy.  These are all sock yarns I have not yet sampled but have been lusting after.  It feels better to  me to buy with intention than to just go hog wild and wonder what happened later when the adrenaline wears off!

My second area of simplification is books.  I am a bibliophile, and I love to buy, collect, attract, and stash books of all kinds.   I turned around last month and really saw how many books I have purchased that I hadn’t gotten around to reading yet.  I made a pile.  It was tall.  Then I made a pile of books that I had read and didn’t want to keep.  Also tall.

At that moment, I decided two things: 1. No buying books until I have read all the books in the first pile. 2. Do something good with the used books I no loger needed.  A friend suggested I look into Paperback Swap and it was a revelation.  You simply post 10 books to your account that you are able to trade.  As people request your books, you get a credit which you can then use to get a new book.  The only cost is for media mail shipping which is under $2.50.  Needless to say, I’ve gotten rid of many books, acquired a few I’ve been wanting, and have been reading a bit more than usual.

Thirdly, I feel inspired by the Wardrobe Refashion challenge.  The idea is to “…abstain from the purchase of “new” manufactured items of clothing [and] refashion, renovate, recycle preloved items for myself with my own hands…”  I like the idea of looking at clothes buying in a new way, as well as refurbishing some of my existing wardrobe.  I have been inteneding to buy myself a sewing machine for about 87 years now, and I think this is just the impetus to finally do so.  I dream of making my own skirts, hemming and change things I already own, and creating something new from something old.  Is anyone interested in taking the 2 month pledge with me?

So those are some of the projects going on around Peaceful House these days.  Unfortunately, I found out yesterday that there is not a bun in the oven, so that is no longer a work in progress.  For the time being, anyway.  Thanks again for all your well wishes and support.

Have a great weekend everyone!

**In the interest of full disclosure, I do have a sign that says Love Joy Peace over my front door.**