Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Simplicity at its Best

You know, I have always been one to advocate decluttering, not accumulating things you don't need, etc.... and yet, I seemed to always struggle with having too much stuff!! Between garage sales and hand-me-downs, things just ended up piling up - and I either used them all or liked them all, so I kept them. smile

But then I would sometimes feel suffocated or swamped with the stuff and its maintenance and keeping it all picked up/ organized/ etc.

Then we came here. We didn't take much to Brazil. When we were getting ready to come, and I was trying to pare down our belongings, I kept hearing God speak to my heart from the passage of Gideon - I kept getting rid of more, and God kept saying I still had too much!

But once we came here to Cambori├║ where we are now, we had to leave 70% of the little we brought to Brazil at the last stop (Santos)! Now we have literally the most basic of the most basic - one towel for each of us, one sheet, one plate, one pair of shoes, and barely enough clothes to wear and wash. We have one clothes cabinet in which all six of our clothes fit with space to spare. The kids really don't have any toys. They each have one stuffed animal. We have UNO, Skip-Bo and Dutch Blitz. We have a box of markers and ONE coloring book. We have about ten picture books that I read over and over to them, and the barest of the minimum of homeschool supplies.

The kids haven't seemed to mind one bit. They have gotten creative like I had always wished they would, but they never had to before! They had too many ready-made playthings. They take better care of what they have, because it is all they got! And when we do get something "new"(like when I got a small package of molding clay the other week), they are truly EXCITED and appreciative about it - the way I always wished they would be, but they just had TOO MUCH!!

I am not complaining about the little we have! I know it will not always be like this. We will soon bring the stuff we left in Santos here. We will likely go back to the States and get more of our stuff this summer. We may buy certain items here or even get hand-me-downs. And it will be nice. But, you know what? I am SURE I will look back fondly at this time in our lives. The simplicity is truly refreshing. I rarely see clutter on the floor. I have never kept up with dishes and laundry better than ever, because I HAVE to! It does not pile up and then stress me out. I don't spend so much time maintaining STUFF! And I like that.

I guess I just felt like sharing. Maybe someone needs encouragement to get rid of some things. smile

2 comments:

MOM said...

Excellent reminder. I'm doing that myself, and it is easier to live with less stuff to maintain. But sometimes we need incentive to unload the excess, like putting our house on the market.

CraftyMama said...

I've always wanted to be like that. My whole life I've struggled with too much stuff--it's hard to part with! But I'm always thinking about how much easier it would be to keep the house clean if we didn't have so much extra STUFF. I definitely need to get on the ball and part with all of my worldly "treasures".