Monday, January 31, 2011

an evacuation pack

I don't know what you have seen on the news in your part of the world, but my part of the world is about to be impacted by a severe tropical cyclone.

We managed to miss one last night, but the one due here within 48 hours is a monster, and there's little chance of us missing it!

Today I'm being forced to decide what I must keep and what I don't care if I lose.   The important stuff has to go in a waterproof box in the car, ready for if we have to leave.  You know, if our roof comes off or something drastic. Birth certificates, passports, insurance policy numbers, computers.  Piano.

I thought long and hard about it - there has been over a month of serious natural disasters across Queensland - and the only thing I can't save that I'd really be upset about losing is the piano, only because the particular piano I've got would be hard to replace.

And my boys.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

dumping rubbish

My husband is currently filling the boot of our car with some big items of rubbish from around our yard and taking them to the tip.  We've been procrastinating about doing it for, um, a long time.

But, we've been put on cyclone watch.  A cyclone is expected to cross the coast just south of here tomorrow night, which means we could be getting some big winds and anything in the yard could become a missile.  Tropical cyclones are pretty unpredictable, so it could even veer north and hit us more directly.

There ain't nothing like an impending natural disaster to kickstart some decluttering!

Though, speaking of cyclones, I have a radio in the cupboard - battery operated - solely for the purpose of keeping updated during a cyclone if the power goes out.  Local radio is the best way to keep informed if the danger has past.  We've never used the radio, and hope never to need to, but some things you just can't get rid of.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I like Facebook because it is a way of interacting with my family.  We can share photos and other things and kind of be together online.  We communicate with each other more with this platform than we did before we were on Facebook.

However, I my immediate family and my husband's immediate family, plus their husbands, wives and children, is only 21 people.  Seven of them aren't old enough to be on Facebook.  Three of them aren't on Facebook at all.   That leaves eleven - and one of those is my husband!

I don't have a particularly large social circle.  Only a handful of friends.  I can't really handle too many people at once.

Yet, I had 210 Facebook 'friends'.  

Do you know what?   I don't really care what the girls who would run away and hide from me during lunch break in high school are doing now.  Unfriend.   My former students: while it's nice to know what they're up to these days, I don't need to know about how much they drank over the weekend or how much they hate their waitressing job.  Unfriend.   Those people who I know but not well and I'd probably never be likely to catch up over coffee.  Unfriend.

I docked 50 'friends' last night and this morning.  That's a pretty good start.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

I don’t use as much as I think I do

A couple of years ago I was reading an online forum and found someone had written that a roll of glad wrap (cling film) lasts them nearly a year.  I scoffed, and wrote the date on the next roll I started.  
I finished it 14 months later.
Since then I’ve become more mindful about how long things do last us.  Dishwasher powder and dishwashing liquid each last two months.  So does a 500mL bottle of olive oil.  A stick of deodorant lasts me four of five months, and shampoo and conditioner lasts longer.  
As it turns out I don’t need to buy bulk items, or jump on buy-two-and-save deals.  Just what we need.   Not having to find space to store the extras is better than the money saved. 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Minimising my bathroom

There are three of us using our tiny ensuite. 
I tidied the cupboard last week looking for a spare toothpaste for my husband (yes, all three of us use a different toothpaste) and found five spare moisturisers. Five?  I don’t have that much body to warrant that many!  
I must not buy another moisturiser until I am almost finished the last spare, even if it is a good price. 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Admitting who I’m not

I am not a painter.
I am not a knitter. (Who am I kidding? I live in the tropics!) 
I am probably never going to be a runner.
I don’t even want to make a quilt. 
I’m not really much of a gardener.  Just a vegie patch is all I’m going to work on, not a full garden of interesting plants. 
I don’t want to perfect the art of cake decorating.
I’m not a DIYer (and neither is my husband). 
I’m not even convinced I want to scrapbook.  
Admitting that I’m not going to do a whole lot of things that I once thought I wanted to do is hard.  But, when it comes down to it, I can’t do everything.  I can’t be everyone.  And I’ll be honest, I only learnt this in the last few months. 
Realising that there are things that I want to do, things that I regret still having not done, and that I haven’t done them because I’ve been busy trying to do things that other people do.  
The reality is that I am a wife and mother, I enjoy sewing, like to cook (though I’m no Masterchef), and get a thrill out of my own homegrown vegetables.  I would like to be better at the piano, and write a few songs.  When my kids are at school I want to become a writer, and maybe move into a career in music history.  Maybe.   
Knowing who I am and who I’m not means not cluttering up my house and my life with things belonging to the person I’m not.  
So, I will be selling my unused yarn on Etsy.  Then I’ll probably finish off the scrapbooks I haven’t finished and see if I am still keen.  If I’m not, I’ll make cards from the leftovers and sell them on Etsy, too.  (I do like to make my own cards.  They are so much nicer than Hallmark.)  I’ll give away a few craft books that were hand-me-downs from Mum, anyway.  
And that will be a start at least. 
Then I can spend a little more time honing my writing skills, mucking about on my piano, and playing with my kids. Right?

Sunday, January 23, 2011



My name is Susan.  I have one husband and two sons.  I am thirty years old.  I live in Queensland, Australia.  I am a Christian.  I play the piano.  I used to work as a school teacher.  I would like to be a writer.

I have too many things.  Too many pots and plates and cups.  Too many books.  Too much floor to sweep and mop.  Too many towels.  Too many different ingredients in my kitchen cupboards.  Too many spare tubs of moisturiser in my bathroom cabinet.  Too many unfinished sewing projects.  Too many un-started craft projects.

I have been a hoarder since I was a child.  More on that later.

I came to a realisation about six years ago that I have Too Much Stuff.  More on that later.

I came to a realisation in the last few months that, actually, deep inside, I actually want to be a minimalist.  I love order, organisation, efficiency and functionality.  That's how my head works, but you wouldn't know it from my house.

That is all about to change.   That is what this blog is about.  Me working through the things that have made me a hoarder, and solving the problem.

I'd love to have you aboard on my journey.