Trying to Reclaim My Car

My car’s name is Dorian. Due to the fact that my car is gray. I love her! She’s my first big adult purchase and I use her pretty regularly to, ya know, drive.

I know The Minimalists say to love people, use things but I think I can love both.

But as of late, I’m not treating my car like I love her… Since I moved (back in July 2020), I’ve had some random boxes just sitting in my car because I didn’t want to clutter my apartment. This doesn’t make the clutter go away. And it being out of sight definitely did not made it easier to remember to actively take steps to intergrade or remove the crap from my life. I now totally understand why every decluttering book warns against off site storage. Out of sight, out of mind is a very real phenomenon.

Anyways, my life has recently reached a new, more cluttered point. Earlier this year, my parents moved and put some of my extra stuff into my aunt’s basement, as she still lives close by. I was texting her about something unrelated, and she mentioned I still have many boxes sitting in her basement.

That was a sign that it was time to get the stuff out of her house and take true ownership of my crap.

And oh my! I have soo much crap!! Poor Dorian was struggling as I was driving her home. I truly needed to clear out my car and make her usable. Since it was filled, including the passenger seat with boxes.

Step One was just clearing out the car. It took a couple trips, even while we used a cart to lug stuff up from the parking garage to my unit.

Step Two is looking through the contents of the box. That’s where it got a been a harder. There some stuff that I can declutter but a lot of it is stuff I don’t have space for, but also don’t want to get rid of. The majority of these boxes are are still sitting in boxes in my room as I write this.

But that can’t stay that way. Mostly because I want my room back, but also because I’m moving later this year and I don’t want to waste space in the moving van on stuff I don’t even want to keep.

Step Three has been getting rid of stuff. 

Donation centers have been closed off and on for the better part of a year due to lockdowns in Ontario. Although they are currently open, they are overwhelmed with donations. So the whole system is way less efficient than usual at redistributing donations.

As much as possible, I’ve been avoiding creating a donation pile. My current system is much slower and one that pretty much no one would recommend, due to it being so inefficient.

I’m currently selling cloths and home goods online on a variety of websites (eBay, Depop, Vinted, etc…). Any items that I don’t think have a resale value higher than it’s shipping cost are being posted in my local Buy Nothing group or FB Marketplace.

It’s been a pretty slow process. I’ve gotten faster at taking, editing and uploading product pics. And for the most part people have been coming to me for pickups. Since I work from home most days so I can just pop down to my building’s lobby and do the hand off. So the active time involved isn’t that high.

A bunch of tapes off to their new home

My friends have been really impressed by my patience in this process. Like the one time a no-buy pickup was about an hour late. Or the person that didn’t read when I mentioned three times I wasn’t available until after 12pm show up at 11:30am looking to trade.  

Those have been the most annoying trades, and they are rare instances. The majority of the time, everyone is punctual and extremely nice. Which is the main reasons I’ve been keeping up with it.

But that’s pretty much where I’m at. My Inbound vs Outbound for June (posted late, but better late than never) will better detail where I’ve been diverting my decluttered items.

I really need to pick up the speed. I really want to have my space reclaimed, right in time to pack it all up for the next place in about a month and half.

I’ve also been recording this process in more detail on my phone. So I need to learn how to edit videos and I’ll post that here as a separate update. So look out for that in the coming weeks to months.

Since the cleanout, I vacuumed the car and it was empty for a short period of time… Unfortunately, the car is currently filled with work equipment, a rain coat, and a copy of Pretty Little Liars I found at my local little library. I plan on dealing with that soon…

BOOK REVIEW: Project 333 by Courtney Carver

I’ve heard of Project 333 a few times over the years, so I was really surprised to find that this book was published March 2020. The concept of Project 333 is very simple. You only wear a combination 33 items of clothing (included shoes and accessories) for 3 months.

Project 333: The Minimalist Fashion Challenge that Proves Less Really is So Much More is the second book by Courtney Carver. She’s been featuring Project 333 on her blog for a few years and this book is an extension of the concept (about ten years after she started it). Which explains why I’ve heard of it before. Some Minimalist YouTubers I watch have mentioned the book and author before.

The book is a tad slow to start. It takes until Chapter 11 before she officially introduces the rules of Project 333. The majority of the chapters before were about her journey with finding minimalism and answering a lot of the questions people typical have about the project. The book does assume you sorta understand the high level concept of the project before introducing it. I think that the rules should have been introduced sooner then the FAQ .

The idea, as mentioned at the top, only wearing 33 items of clothing for a period of 3 months. There are some exemptions, such as wedding ring/sentimental jewelry, workout gear, under garments, lounge wear (only to be worn exclusively at home. Leggings you wear out to do groceries or whatever count to your 33 items), and work uniforms.

Photo by Liza Summer on Pexels.com

She has more that 33 items, as some items are seasonal. That’s why the project is three months, to match the seasons. But she has way less that 132 items, since most of her closet carries over.

After the chapter with the rules and looking at her closet, the book goes a bit more ‘woo woo’ or metaphysical about the larger knock on effects of having a small closet. Lots talk about mediation, the joys of quiet moments, not having to clean as much, downsizing. The standard package of a minimalism book. Although she made no comments about losing weight, and she was pro renting. So 4/6 minimalism tropes isn’t bad.

Overall, I enjoyed the book. I don’t know if it will be everyone’s cup of tea, since it’s a rather repetitive. I can also imagine her tone of her writing wouldn’t be everyone’s favorite (you can tell she was a blogger first). There were moments as I was reading I was going back and forth on if I enjoyed the style or not.

If you are looking exclusively for the rules of Project 333, her website (https://bemorewithless.com/project-333-challenge/) is definitely the resource for you.

The book was a light quick read filled with 80’s pop references and generally has feel good motivational vibe.

Photo by Alena Shekhovtcova on Pexels.com

I feel for the author, her book was published at a really bad time to start the Project. Since most people have been working from home since publication. In general clothing and fashion haven’t been a main priority for most people. 

Although it will be interesting to see how that effects peoples clothing choices. I know for me, I’ve been wearing around the same 30 items. But that’s because I’ve been living in sweatpants and hoodies, unless I have to go to site or have a cameras-on zoom meeting. Imagine a worst version of what a typical university student would wear during exams, but for the past year and a half. 

When reading the book I was thinking I would do the project and see how I feel about it. Last weekend I was planning on going through my closet and sort what I want to keep, since I was inspired by the book. But I made scones and took at nap instead.

The next recommended start time is September 1st, so I have the summer and maybe slight return to pre-covid times to help me plan my choices. If I do it, I’ll do my best to document and report back on how I feel about it. I can also start in July or any other time. I have some other decluttering projects I want to tackle in the immediate term, but I do want to circle back and try this.

Inbound vs Outbound #9 – May 2021

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see, if over time, I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long run since I’m documenting when it’s arriving.

plane landing
Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound: 

  • Two hot pepper plants;
  • One rosemary plant; and
  • One tomato plant.
plane taking off
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • One dead orchid (RIP); and
  • One pillow case sold on Depop.

Another month that keeps like it was just flying by. June will definitely have more movement.

Inbound vs Outbound #8 – April 2021

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see, if over time, I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long run since I’m documenting when it’s arriving. So I can think a bit more critically about the whole thing.

plane landing
Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound: 

  • Various Seeds (herbs, greens and wild flowers);
  • A piece of rebar for staking plants;
  • Moonlight snake plant;
  • Fertilizer for hydroponics; and
  • Three pack of deodorant, so I shouldn’t smell for a bit.

plane taking off
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • Two books about Construction Project Management given to my friend that is working on getting his PMP.

Definitely more items coming in this month and out. April flew by, so I didn’t really have a chance to get started on my spring cleaning. We’re also currently in a stay at home order, so meet ups for trades are discouraged and donation centers are closed. That just makes the process to get things out of the house even more difficult.

Inbound vs Outbound #7 – March 2021

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see, if over time, I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long run since I’m documenting when it’s arriving. So I can think a bit more critically about the whole thing.

plane landing
Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound: 

  • One vertical planter for my balcony;
  • Various seeds (spinach, boy choy, parsley, and more);
  • One plastic pan to put under planters;
  • One plastic pan to put under planters, but this one has wheels!;
  • Two sets of gardening gloves;
  • One screw driver (for work so I’m not sure if this counts);
  • One flashlight (for work);
  • Two buckets;
  • One box of personal items from my parents house, as they are moving;
  • Four egg cartons for seedings;
  • One small Monstera Deliciosa; and
  • One ziplock worth of worms for vermicomposting.
plane taking off
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • A pair of ripped gardening gloves;
  • One canvas set with the paint and brush included;
  • One drawing pad;
  • One pencil case;
These three were given away on my local Buy Nothing group

  • Four books; and
  • The key to my old house since my parents have moved.

Definitely more items coming in this month because of the change of the season and wanting to do more gardening.

Inbound vs Outbound #6 – February 2021

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see if over time I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long term since I’m documenting when it’s arriving, so I can think a bit more critically about the whole thing.

plane landing
Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound: 

  • 5 various undergarments;
  • Color Me Vegan by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, borrowed from my parents;
  • Edible by Daniella Martin, borrowed from my parents;
  • 1 reusable menstrual cup;
  • 2 Glengarry glasses; and
  • 8 pairs of socks.
plane taking off
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • 1 belt buckle (sold on Depop);
  • 1 broken pair of headphones;
  •  6 dead pens; and
  • 2 erasers.

Not as much as previous months. It’s a short month, so it’s a short list.

Inbound vs Outbound #5 – January 2021

plane landing

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see if over time I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long term since I’m documenting when it’s arriving and can think a bit more critically about the whole thing.

plane landing
Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound:

  • 1 string of led lights decluttered by my parents to me;
  • 1 phone case; and
  • 1 three pack of tempered glass phone screen protectors.

plane taking off
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • 1 alarm clock that mimics a sunrise, given on my local BuyNothing group;
  • 1 dead rosemary (RIP);
  • 2 Tamagotchis, sold on eBay;
  • 1 winter jacket, donated to a clothing drive;
  • 2 winter/fall coats, donated to a clothing drive;
  • 1 hoodie, donated to a clothing drive
  • 1 bottle of micellar water;
  • 1 glove since I lost the other half of the pair;
  • 1 mitten since I lost the other half of the pair;
  • 1 half used Happy Planner for 2017;
  • One Rock Band instrument set, given away on my local Buy Nothing Group, including:
    • Rock Band 2; and
    • Beatles Rock Band.
  • 6 yearbooks;
  • 2 notebooks from highschool;
  • 1 friendship bracelet, sold on Depop; and
  • 1 keychain for the gym membership I cancelled 6 months ago.

Inbound vs Outbound #4 – December 2020

The point of this article is to see what I’ve purchased versus what I’ve decluttered in the month. The ultimate goal is to see if over time I’m bringing more into my life than taking out. Also if the things I do bring in are adding more value into my life in the long term since I’m documenting when it’s arriving and can think a bit more critically about the whole thing.

Photo by Shoval Zonnis on Pexels.com

Inbound: 

  • 1 new phone, including a new charging cable;
  • 1 set of ear buds that came free with the phone; 
  • 1 Peace Collective long sleeve;
  • 1 backpack;
  • 1 messenger bag; 
  • 1 Callisia Repens Pink Lady; 
  • 1 bottle of plant fertilizer; 
  • 1 necklace with my starsign;
  • 1 cutting wood board;  
  • 1 puzzle of the history of Toronto 
  • 1 ‘House of Plants’ board game; 
  • 1 face cream;
  • 1 mug;
  • 1 jar of wood cutting board oil;
  • 1 garlic cutter;
  • 1 vegetable peeler; 
  • 1 USB stick with some courses;
  • 1 T-shirt;
  • 2 laundry dryer balls; and 
  • 1 print and frame.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Outbound:

  • At least three notebooks worth of random papers found at my parents house; 
  • 1 sweater; 
  • 3 purses; 
  • 1 laptop case 
  • 2 old cellphones for electronics recycling; 
  • 1 wallet
  • About a dozen books; 
  • 3 children books found at my parents house; 
  • 2 books returned to my parents; and
  • 1 broken vegetable peeler.

A Mini Book Declutter – December 2020

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Over the past few months I’ve been slowly amassing more books. This is either from picking them up from the little libraries around my neighborhood or taking books back from my parents houses. The shelf on my Billy bookshelf has slowly been getting fuller and there were books being squeaked on top of other books. 😱 The whole thing didn’t look cute, and that is a sign that somethings need to go. So that’s what todays post will be about.  

This is the before condition of my bookshelf. It’s not in the worst condition ever, but there is room for improvement. The first that happened was that I put the shit that didn’t belong there away. Like my dusting cloth, the duct tape and the scissors.  

N' T CROC.HFT • A 
CROCUM___ 
VI sari IA 
bNnmou t. 
LEAN IN SHERYL SANDBERG 
JOSEPH E. 
i PRICE 
STIGLITZ 
, THE BLUE BOOK OF STATIONERY 
CRANI 
Beyond the Global Cit 
Psycllogrographic 
STROLL 
Walking Tours Of Toronto 
Shawn M'callef 
J.G. BALLARD HIGH-RISE 
Nudge 
Improving 
CASS SUNSITIN 
Ilealtli, Wealtl•. antl 
WHOSE CITY? 
SECOND 
HANDMADE MARKETPLACE 
EDITION 
PAMELA BRITTON 
PERSUASION JANEAUSTEN 
SENSE AND SENSIBILITY 
WV 
BUSINESS 
ISA CHANDRA MOSKOWITZ 
VEGAN CUPCAKES TAKE OV 
TERRY HOPE ROMERO 
VEGAN FOR EVERYBO 
Illustrated 
Guide to Gardening 
in Canada 
VAN K REVELE 
PLANTING, PREPARING AND 
AMANDA ROOiN 
GroceryGardening 
PRESERVING FRESH FOOD 
SIMPLIFIED PLANNER. 
NAN CY ZIEMAN'S 
Sewing AtoZ 
100+ SEWING and QUILTING 
TIPS and TE@HNIQUES 
Slater 
Of Needlepoint FOR LEFT-HANDERs 
k'ÜCONWANY 
THE ULTIMATE KNITTING BOOK 
COMPLETELY UPDATED

After that I took everything off the shelf and sorted it into the following categories:  

  • Hobbies    
    • Yarn Based  
    • Sewing  
    • Gardening  
  • Cooking 
  • Business/self-development  
  • Architecture/design 
  • Fiction 
DELAMORT 
K. Row 
Quo D 
NEW YORK FINES BESTSELLER 
unth 
FLAVORFut RECIPES 
AND bps ON SERVING 
INES FOOD 
STROLL 
psychogeograph.c 
of Toronto 
Shown M.callef 
Weekly 
JANE AusrEN
Pre Sorting
e coote7R; 
VELEN 
PIANT' 
with 
FLAVORFUL RECIPES 
AND-TIPS 'ON SERVING 
WINES WITH F 000 
-C STAGG 
ESH FOOD 
4th 
.97 
NAOMI 
unmerunurunumnuuurnnur 
SECO 
cootro/ 
SMALL 
BUSINESS 
OWNER 
vat ' '
Post Sorting – Although it does look the same

After that, I flipped through the books and determined what I want to keep and get rid of. The biggest ones I wanted to tackle were the two massive gardening books. Reader’s Digest Illustrated Guide to Gardening and A Year in Gardening. As someone that only has a balcony to work with, I do not need two reference guides for gardening. Flipping through them, it was clean that the Illustrated Guide to Gardening was the keeper. It has a couple chapters on indoor plants and the information looked really cool.  

The Year in Gardening assumes you are in England, it did have a beautiful guide for what flowers and such will be in bloom at what point in the year which hopefully will be helpful to someone with a garden in my neighborhood. There were drawings and information that crossed over in both books. So the winner was clear.  

Plants Jbr Foliage and Flovvers 
that sun is needed, as In a west 
window (or perhaps a south win- 
dow that is shaded by a 
ov flowers, and fivllts, 
"Pitfusecl' 
but good light is 
of described 
The describes 
tree). 
on the tol- 
needed, as in a north window. 
in of available 
loss tug chart according to whether 
sunlight. direct sun can 
thcv ave salued tor tollage 
provided in an unblocked south 
"Mini111t111) 
each categO- 
ov cast window. "Moderate" means 
listed alphabetically by 
theu best k ness A) conunon nanws. 
In the second colufllli the leaves 
False aralia 
Ing plant. C 
as tetnperatll 
and feeding. 
IQ ennarks 
The best 
given the 
Air plant 
(Kalanchoe pinnata) 
Aglaoncma modestum 
CÅ"mmon and botanical names, 
general characteristics 
Aglaonema, or Chinese evergreen 
(Aglaonetna modestum) 
Durable foliage plant of compact 
habit. Leaves are clustered on top 
of single slender cane. Il 2 ft. 
Air plant (Kalanchoe pinnata) 
Succulent plant with heads of green 
flowers tinged with purple. Plantlets 
form on leaf margins. Il 11/2-3 ft. 
Aloe, or Burn plant (Aloe vera) 
Rosette-fortning succulent plant. 
Leaves contain sap said to heal burns 
and other skin afflictions. Il 2 ft. 
Aluminum plant (Pilea cadierei) 
Bushy little plant of dainty habit. 
Also called watermelon pilea. 
Il 10-12 in. Dwarf aluminum plant 
(P. c. minima) is suitable for 
terrariums and bottle gardens. Il 5 in. 
Aralia, false, or threadleaf 
(Dizygothcca elegantissima) 
Graceful, upright shrub often 
used as floor accent. Il 4-8 ft. 
Aralia, Japanese (Fatsia japonica) 
Handsome, upright plant useful as 
decorative, bold accent in rootny 
interiors. Il 4-10 ft. 
Leaves 
Lance shaped, 
leathery, waxy, 
green. To 
8 in. long. 
Scalloped, 
fleshy, tinged 
with red. 
Dagger shaped, 
blue-green, 
spotted with 
white when young. 
Deep veins give 
quilted effect; 
silver markings. 
Light 
Maximum 
direct sun 
best, but 
tolerates 
diffused. 
Maximum 
direct sun. 
Maximum 
direct 
sun. 
Diffused. 
(Dizygotheca elegantissima) 
Special requirements and remarks 
Average to high humidity. Keep soil moist, 
not soggy. Feed every 2 mo. Needs little 
attention. Grow in water or general- 
purpose soil mix. Minimum temperature: 
160-180C. 
Average humidity. Water only as soil dries. 
Needs little care. Use general-purpose 
soil mix with double amount of sand. 
Minimum temperature: 180C. 
Tolerant of dry conditions. Allow soil to 
dry out between waterings. Use desert- 
cactus soil mix (p. 371 Minimum 
temperature: 100-130C. 
Requires high humidity. Keep soil moist, 
not soggy. Fertilize lightly every 2 mo. 
Pinch off tip growth. Use general- 
purpose soil mix. Minimum tetnperature: 
160-1 soc. 
Average to high humidity. Keep soil moist, 
not soggy. Feed monthly spring to fall. 
Use general-purpose soil mix. Mil 
temperature: 180C. 
Average to h' 
not SO 
ea 
J apancse 
( FGtsi(1 
Propagation 
Divide estab 
plants; or ta 
cut tings. 
Pot plantl( 
1 ake tip 
Pot up 1b 
Take liv 
Fol 
plant, 
or take 
Feathery, palmlike, 
copper colored when 
young; later turn 
dark green and 
become broader. 
Palmate, shiny, 
dark green, about 
16 in. across. 
Moderate 
or diffused. 
Moderate 
or diffused.

Next was looking through random knitting and crochet patterns that I have. I took pictures of the patterns in books that didn’t have enough to be worth keeping the whole book and I added those patterns into my OneNote and put the books into my outbound pile. 

That method was the same for the cook books.

I got rid of the urban planning/design books that didn’t talk about Canada, and one landscaping book since I have a feeling the world of design has evolved past it, as it was published in the 80’s. 

I kept all the personal development books as I’m working my way through them. I’ve always had the intention of putting them back in the little libraries once I was done with them so I’m not emotional attached them. 

I’m really happy that all the books I’m keeping fit on the shelf. There’s even room to fit more if I wanted to in the future.   

PAMELA BRITTON 
PERSUASION 
SENSE AND SENSIBILITY JANEAUSTEN 
BALLARD HIGH-RISE 
lod,qeB 
STROLL 
Psychogeogrölphi(.- 
Shawn Mtcallef 
Walking Taurs of Toronto 
Beyond the g 
NAOMI 
4VlNDOWS D % 
RICHARD ll. THALER 
Nudge 
Improsung Decisions About 
AND SUNSTEIN 
licalth. \Vealth. and llappiness 
WHY YOUR WORLDIS ABOUT 
—TO GET A WHOLE LOT SMALLER-.........!E- 
Stuff White Peo le Like 
LEAN IN SHERYL SANDBERG 
JOSEPH E, 
STIGLITZ 
ISA CHANDRA MOSKOWITZ 
VEGAN CUPCAKES TAKE OVER TYE WORLD 
TERRY ROMERO 
VEGAN FOR 
VAN K REVELE 
PLANTING, PREPARING AND 
GroceryGardening 
PRESERVING FOOD 
GORDO, W0RLD KITCHEN 
SALSA BOOK 
Miller 
FUCK OFF, I'M COLORING 
SIMPLIFIED PLANNER. 
SECOND 
HANDMADE MARKETPLACE 
EDITION 
WNER 
BUSINESS 
Eva Sterling 
The Perfect Fit 
Illustrated 
Guide to Gardening 
in Canada 
CRANE&CO. 
THE BLUE BOOK OF STATIONERY 
SWEATERS VOU c AN 8 . 
THE ULTIMATE KNITTING BOOK 
COVIPLETELY REVISED & UPDATED
After this photo was taken I reorganized by height

But where is everything that was decluttered going? I’m going to go for a walk and drop when off/return them to the little libraries around my neighborhood. Also return the books that I borrowed from my parents or friends.  

BOOK REVIEW: Year of No Clutter by Eve O. Schaub

I just found this book as a recommended title on Libby so I thought I would give it a shot and I’m glad I did. Year of No Clutter is a memoir by Eve Schaub of the year (I believe its 2016 or 2017) of her and her family decluttering their house, specifically the ‘Hell Room’ a room that seemed to have become the families dumping ground.   

I tried finding some info about Eve after finishing the book and it seems like she’s primarily a blogger. This is her second book, with the first one being Year of No Sugar which documents her family’s year of no additional processed sugar.  

Photo by Rachel Claire on Pexels.com

In the first chapter I was debating returning the book to the library. It’s primarily the story of Eve and the Hell Room, which sounded super super disgusting. There are boxes with cat pee stains, dead bugs and one dead mouse. When she saw the dead mouse she thought it was so gross that she wrote a post about it for her blog and decided the she needed to keep the mouse as a memento of the blog.  

Everyone that I mentioned this to agreed its nasty and asked why I was reading it. Which was fair, I was debating calling it quits because I didn’t want to read the memoir of someone who thought it was cool to keep little biohazards. But I pushed through, because I found her writing quite engaging.  

Once I got past the mouse, the book improved a lot. The book documents her year, and it’s not in a month by month play thought like The Year of Less (Link to Review). But a series of anecdotes of when her (and her kids) would work to tackle all the items in the room.  This is after she comes to the realization that she had hoarding tendencies and if left unchecked could become a full hoarding situation.  

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Things I like about the book: the decluttering process wasn’t easy. I will compare this book to The Year of Less again, since they are both decluttering memoirs. Cait was able to get rid of like 50% of her items in the first month. That isn’t something that most people can do, so Eve talking about her struggles with detaching memories from her items was interesting to read and I think better reflects most people’s struggle as they start the process. Decluttering is a muscle and needs to be built up before its really good for anything.  

I also enjoyed that Eve actually mentioned the part after making the pile for the donation bin. She talked about selling clothes to consignment, online and donating it to different organizations which I feel like so many minimalism/decluttering books skip or briefly mention. She also talks about the time requirements to go to all these places while trying to run a household.   

The last thing I will mention is that the family is filled with crafters/creatives which I feel aren’t mentioned enough in the decluttering/minimalism space. There’s a chapter where she talks about going on a weaving retreat and she talks about knitting which are things I really relate too and enjoyed they got a mention. 

Photo by Flora Westbrook on Pexels.com

The main thing I didn’t like, how long she kept that dead mouse. But also how uninvolved her husband was in the process. Her and her kids would spend so much time looking at all this stuff (which a bunch of it was his, although he wouldn’t own up to it) and he would just complain there was piles waiting for to go to Value Village but didn’t seem to take any active role in maybe getting the stuff out of the house if it bother him so much. Her method of finally getting him to look through he’s shit was to just pile it in inconvenient places till he broke down and looked at it. I am not married but I feel like that isn’t the best way to do it. But that chapter was a strong reminder that this book is a memoir and not a guide.  

Overall I enjoyed the book after getting past the first couple chapters. The book isn’t a guide but she does share some of the things that she figured out. I think a lot of her epiphanies are things that were mentioned in Decluttering at the Speed of Life if you are looking for the step by step guide version of a decluttering process.