Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Purging Some Clothing I Don't Use Anymore

Recently I've been feeling somewhat burdened with stuff that I don't use anymore... clothes, shoes, old gear, and other such things.  I've been itching to lighten the load a bit, but haven't found/made the time.  Last night, I finally committed, and packed up a bunch of clothes and some shoes to take to a donation center.

Some articles of clothing required a bit of thought before I tossed them in the donation box, but generally it felt good to drop stuff in there.  A lot of the clothes were things that are too big for me now that I've lost weight since going Paleo.  Dropping those items in the box felt like saying goodbye to the Kyle who needed to wear clothes that big for good.  I don't really care to spend my time or money shopping for clothes, so it gave me a small incentive to never let myself go that badly again.  Some of the other clothes are things that for one reason or another I hung onto, so I just got rid of them if I didn't see myself wearing them in the next 6 months.

I'm going to continue to purge other stuff in the coming days.  Perhaps even in the coming weeks.  It feels good to let go of things that others might find good use for that will otherwise be sitting on my shelf gathering dust.  I feel like it makes my life more nimble, and I also feel like I might be helping someone out who might need what I have more than I do.

The spark that lit this fire to finally donate/purge was the influx of items that came to me for Christmas.  I received a lot of really awesome gifts, but I had a little trouble finding places for everything without displacing something else.  I think after this purge, I might try to institute a personal policy that if something comes in, something else must go out.  Perhaps 2 things must go out.  For example, recently I've been thinking I'd like a messenger bag that fits my needs more readily than the big school backpack I have leftover from college.  But before I purchase the messenger bag, I think I'm going to try to sell my old backpack on craigslist or to a co-worker.  By the time I'm able to sell the backpack, I'll know for sure if I really want the messenger bag, or if it was just a consumerist impulse.  And if I really do still want the messenger bag after taking the time to sell my backpack, it'll make sure I don't start to collect stuff just to have it.  I'm excited to try this out and see if it results in leaning out my possessions to only things I use on a regular basis.

What do you do to keep your burden light?  I think that getting by with less can help you feel more free than if you have a bunch of stuff you never use.  When you have a bunch of unused stuff, you end up needing a bigger place just to store it (or a storage locker, which is a concept so ridiculously consumerist that I don't want to go into it in this post... but maybe someday).  But I wonder, why store it when you don't even use it?  Storage costs money one way or another, so it's almost like a continuous tax on something you've already payed for.  If you don't use it, why even have it? Do you agree, or am I just crazy?  Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts in the comments if you do, and thanks for reading!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

The Permie Homestead Blog is 2 Years Old!

Yes, although there were only 12 posts during the 2nd year of the Permie Homestead blog, it does still exist, and it's the 2nd Anniversary!

Even though I haven't been writing much, I have still been feverishly reading, learning, and planning how I can make my homesteading dream a reality.  Much has happened in the last year that I will summarize when I can, but for now, I wanted to write this brief post to say that I am going to try to write more this year.  I'm finally where I want to be, I have a career that will lead me to my goals, and I feel like I have a lot to write about that isn't just dreaming, it's doing.  Perhaps that will make it easier for me since I'll be writing something that is meaningful and real.

I'm also planning on taking the blog "back to its roots."  As of today, I'm planning on:

  • Demonetizing the blog.  I may still post a review or a link to a book, and yes it will still link to Amazon and if you buy through that link I'll get some tiny kickback, but I feel like that is much less pervasive than the ads that currently run, which frequently were ads for companies I don't necessarily want to support.  Thanks to those folks who clicked on ads for me when I was running them, but from now on I'd like you to enjoy the blog as it is and free of advertisement.
  • I'm going to start treating this more like a personal notebook again, and less like something written for others.  This is largely behind why I am demonetizing the blog.  I want to write something that is a reference for myself when I'm really in the thick of homesteading, and if no one else wants to read it, then so be it.  I can't justify ads on a blog that is kind of a personal notebook.
  • In the style of a personal notebook, I'm going to start trying to include observations and notes that I make around where I'm living now.  For almost anyone else in the world, these will probably have little meaning if any.
  • I'm going to start creating plant fact sheets.  I have accumulated some awesome reference books that talk about temperate climate permaculture and the plants that grow well in those areas, and I want to start writing notes about the plants as I learn about them.  Maybe I'll even start writing a plant of the week piece, or guild of the week.  Based on my posting history though, I don't want to get overly ambitious.
In the coming few posts, I'll try to jot down what has happened in my life over the last year or so, so that some of what I'll start writing will make sense.  For now, I'm just glad that my homestead dream has been running strong for over 2 years!