simplicity

simplicity

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“Possessions, outward success, publicity, luxury - to me these have always been contemptible. I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone, best for both the body and the mind.”
Albert Einstein

Monday, 16 December 2013

Click to unsubscribe

When I check my emails each morning there is always something interesting to look at! 
2 for 1 hot air balloon rides, Egyptian cotton towels on sale, robot vacuums for the price of normal vacuums, signing petitions to save our broadband internet, what Miley Cyrus did on the weekend, cute pictures of kittens, petitions to save our kittens from hot air ballon rides! Before I know it it's 9.30am and I need to get some work done.... and drink more coffee.

Now I do love the idea of online mail, online catalogues and online shopping for its obvious tree saving reasons however the amount of pages and sites I subscribe to in one year is amazing and a waste of my time. Each year I try and make it a New Years ritual to unsubscribe to all the email junk I receive. I guess this year it's more important. 

As I said in my 'No Junk Mail' entry you do not need encouragement to purchase more things that you don't need just because it's a good deal. 

Time is also one of the most valuable things in life, we are always striving to beat a deadline to get more things done to get more things out of life and we always need more of this fundamental thing....... Time. So why waste it on things you don't need and people that don't matter. Not to mention I have found the mornings have been my most productive hours of the day, I'm full of breakfast and coffee and nothing crap has happened yet!

So I took the time to unsubscribe, to everything, yep everything. 

Emails is not the only place this accumulation of junk occurs, places like Instagram and Facebook are culprits too. I un-followed every fashion and shopping page on Instagram so I'm not tempted to buy anything. In replacement I started finding second hand sellers and vintage fashion pages, also things that make me happy like food and music and my favourite minimalist bloggers hehe 

Now I want to make this clear I'm not asking you to unsubscribe to this blog, or everything that pops into your inbox, just be mindful of what you have subscribed to and keep it important and...

Stay simple

Monday, 9 December 2013

Its starting to feel a lot like Christmas

When I was younger the family plastic Christmas tree would go up without fail on the last night of November, I was always itching to get it out and put it up. Back then we had the same tree for much longer than I was alive. Now days it's much different. More and more faux trees are produced each year some getting cheaper and cheaper some getting bigger and more ridiculous.  

When I cleaned my garage out at the start of this year I chucked my very plastic and very disposable white Christmas tree. I figured I would just buy a new one. I thought maybe I could get a black on this coming year. I know, how realistic is that! 

More recently I have become more and more aware about landfill and where a lot of our products come from. Chances are most of the faux trees out there are from China or Indonesia. So much labour, space, poor paid man hours and chemicals are used to create these plastic lifeless trees with their massive carbon footprint. 


So this year I went for a more Eco friendly option. I bought my own little living Christmas tree. Now mind you it doesn't look like much, and a large gust of wind could blow it over but there are so many good points.  

I can use it every year, it's in a pot - providing I keep it alive.  
It grows into a bigger and better tree each year.  
It increases oxygen in your home.  
It makes you feel good inside.  
You can even name it if you want to.  

Not only are faux trees a concern but the decorations are as well. I decided to DIY some decorations this year. I also had to keep in mind that my little bundle of joys branches were not very strong at all yet. I just went with some simple red bows made from ribbon with metal loops I found at a craft store and some left over tinsel from last year. 

Looking at my tree now it does look a bit different but I'm happy with it. At the end of the day it Christmas is not about the tree with the presents sitting underneath. For me Christmas is about friends and family... and time off work.
 






 


Tis the season





Monday, 2 December 2013

Back to basics


When I set myself the challenge to not buy anything new for a year I must admit I did freak out a bit. I started to make lists of everything I need to buy before Jan 1. I had to think about what events I have coming up and also what I will do when winter hits. I felt like I had to go buy everything. But that really defeats the purpose so I had to be strategic about it.


I bought 3 pairs of good quality jeans. I would never usually spend upwards of $50 jeans (mainly because I'm not a jeans person) but I figured I need to buy something that is going to last. Along with the jeans I bought some comfortable denim shorts and a fair few basic tops. I went to styles and colours that will not go out of fashion and things that I can dress up and down with my other items of clothing. Check out my small stock pile. I'm Pretty happy with it. I had to include some longer sleeved tops to wear in winter too.


Now every girl has to enjoy a spot of shopping but long and tiresome process was it for me! I'm actually looking forward to not going to the shops for a long time. Less hustle and bustle, less rude sales staff and less spending.



Now let's just hope that those bell bottom jeans from the 70s don't come back in fashion - because that would be a disaster in itself! Hehe


Stay simple

Saturday, 23 November 2013

No Junk Mail



Cutting out the junk inside the home is one of the first steps towards living a more minimal lifestyle. So why bring more junk back in?

Junk mail makes up a big 6% of the total paper usage in Australia. When you consider how much paper, waste, energy and water is used up to make those catalogues you get is it really worth it? And I don't know about you but I used to flick through those things so quickly and next minute they where in the bin.

It's a small step putting that sticker on your letter box but it makes a big difference. Not only is it good for the earth but it's good for your pockets. Less spending will occur and less temptation to fill your house with more items.

Catalogues encourage looking for things to buy that you don't need and where not looking for in the first place. 

Don't worry you can still shop for specials if you are in the market for something. You would be surprised how many websites have online catalogues these days.

Give it a go, see how you go without junk mail, without attracting and accumulating more junk.

Stay simple


Sunday, 17 November 2013

The bottom drawer

My life is pretty de-cluttered. I am pretty harsh when it comes to a change in season and I'm not scared to cull my wardrobe, but I still manage to have a lot of crap in my room. I find it hard to part with ornaments and a few articles of clothing. I think I might need this one day when I go to that garden party or picnic. No Holly! You will never wear it. If I do, great! but is it really worth taking up space for a year cluttering up your room in the hope that you have a picnic to go to! Best rule ever - if you didn't wear it last year it has to go!

So Last night I did a very harsh and very thorough clean out of my room.

I usually keep my wardrobe doors open, I like to be able to wake up and see my clothes and think about what I will want to wear. I also like to see my money where I can see it. So naturally I knew what was in there. But as for the hidden places, well they are another story.....

Drawers for example - out of sight out of mind.
You have your usual undies draw which is your typical deal, same with your general clothes that are folded and put away. But what shocked me is how much crap I had in that bottom drawer. You know the drawer that stuff goes to die but you know you shouldn't throw it out. For me it was 2 drawers, one filled to the brim with electronics, cords, christmas lights, electrical tape and anything else I could fit in there. The other was paper, and a shit load of it, everything from pay slips from 7 years ago, birthday cards, bank statements and shopping lists. I even found my original birth certificate (I have been looking every where for it!). Majority of things needed to go. Not to mention how much of a fire hazzard it all was.

This is how many old phones and gadgets I found in the draw.




I think everybody has 1 or 2 old phones that they have saved in case of emergency or need to get photos or songs off and have never got around to it and they have ended up in the bottom drawer.

Did you know that you can actually trade in your phones for cash! if they are in working order you can actually get quite a bit for them. visit sites like http://www.mazumamobile.com.au and see how much your phones are worth.

As for me in total I had about $10 worth which for me was not too much. So I found that you can actually donate your old phones and gadgets to collectors that donate the funds to charity. 

http://www.arp.net.au/donate.php - Aussie Recycling Program - Where you can pick where the money goes.
http://youcan.org.au/how-it-works/about-phone-recycling/ - You can - Donates the funds to build youth cancer centers.
http://www.zoo.org.au/get-involved/act-for-wildlife/theyre-calling-on-you - Victoria Zoo - Donates funds towards rangers in the congo. 

One of the biggest threats to gorillas is the illegal mining of coltan, a mineral used in mobile phones.

Along with the two drawers I also found that the top of the cupboard is another hidden terror. Mass amounts of things can be thrown up there. I found handbags from 3 years ago that had even more bags inside them. Old scarfs, belts, hats and heaps of bags with receipts in them. None of this stuff I have touched in years. Mainly because I cant reach it. It had to go.


The outcome was that I went from 12 complete drawers and a full top shelf down to 6 drawers and a fairly spacious cupboard. God it feels good!

Now off to the Salvos I go.


Before
After

























Stay Simple




Tuesday, 12 November 2013

The Book Man

Every couple of weeks at the Law office I work at we have the a visit from "The Book Man" (who is quite handsome mind you). He arrives each time with a new box full or books that we can purchase. Most weeks while waiting at the photo copier I will have a look and something usually catches my eye, it's either the new vitamins book or some miscellaneous cooking book. This week it was a book on super foods. These books are usually better priced than the ones you buy in the stores, but this week I said to myself "Holly this is your last book your I training for next years mission".

You see this is what the library is for. The library has so many pros and you don't have to be a nanna to use it. Although some pretty cute nanas have been spotted.

Pros

You can browse and read for as long as you like, without receiving a deathly look from the lady at QBD wishing you would purchase the book already.

It's quiet. I absolutely love silence. Getting away from phones ringing and people talking is one of the best things for the soul.

The selection, all available online now. You can even order to pick up if you are busy.

You don't spend any money except for the $5 fee to join for your ultra handy plastic card that enables self service (see you don't even have to interact with people if you don't want to).

You don't waste any space with books you may never read again. 

And

You don't collect dust or have to pack boxes of books to move.



Did you know it takes approximately 24 trees to make a ton of paper?


If you can't help buying a book how about going to a second hand store? Also a lot of publishing companies are now using recycled paper, opt for that. Each ton of recycled paper saves 12 trees.

For you tech savvy girls and guys out there try using ebooks, they are easy to use and save paper, space and are a fraction of the cost.

So from now on I am saying adios to the book man and hello to the cute nanas at the library.


Stay simple.






Saturday, 9 November 2013

Where does it all go?


I often think when I visit shops like Diva or Supre  where does all the unsold items go” and “what about once people are done with their dress or top that is soo in right now, where does that go?” In some cases these clothes are donated to charity or given to friends, which is great. Maybe they might even be used as cleaning rags (cudos to you if this is the case) but in most cases they will end up in landfill at the end of their fashionable (or not) life.

From 1997 to 2007 the average waste produced per person almost doubled to 2,100kgs per year.  Of course economic growth has contributed towards this. Australians are amongst the highest users of new technology, and waste from obsolete electronic goods is one of the highest growing types of waste.

Landfills impact on our air, water and land quality. Landfill gasses are released into the air and contribute to global warming. 

The days are gone of that sweater that you have had since you left school that has gotten you through so many winters. Now days as the seasons change so does the fashion. The old faithful may still be in closets out there but the 12 other jumpers that you have bought since is what is creating the mass amounts of landfill in Australia.

The tragedy is that this textile waste is 90% recyclable. Most electronics can still be used but are considered out if date and most other items could be given to the less fortunate when they really are at the end of their legs.

Next time you are buying that cute top or new upgraded phone, think Do I already have something the same? what are you actually buying it for? Is it worth it?

For me I KNOW not buying things is hard but this is what I have to keep reminding myself.

Remember to subscribe

xo

Friday, 8 November 2013

What about the knickers?

There are a few people who have asked me "what does it include" "can you buy food" and "what about undies" so I have researched around on a few sites few sites like - buynothingnew.com & taken things from a few greeny books I've read and come up with my set of rules.

I can buy food.
I can buy medication.
I can buy hygiene products.
I can borrow.
I can swap.
I can shop second hand.
I can DIY.

I can't buy anything new. No new phones, no new electronics, clothes, no new books. Nothing new.

I can still go and do fun activities and continue to shop at local food markets and restaurants. I have grown to believe in keeping these things local and avoiding Coles and woollies as much as possible.

The aim of the game for me is knowing that I don't need new "things" and "stuff" to make me happy, save money and do my bit to not contribute to the mass amounts of clothes, electronics and general crap that goes into landfill every year.  Not to mention the carbon footprint it all creates.

I will revisit these subjects more during the blog.

So during the next month and a bit I will keep you guys updated on how I plan to do prepare myself for the next year and things I learn along the way.

Remember to subscribe :)

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Today is the day

Welcome to my blog



Cull the crap is a blog dedicated to my upcoming New Years resolution and making small changes to have a more  minimal lifestyle.



After moving out of home I discovered that living with out a TV isn't actually that hard. Firstly it started with being to lazy and poor to buy a TV and now it has turned to a choice. It cuts the materialistic adverts and gives me so much more time. I would imagine if I had TV I would form  a relationship with it and consume far more chocolate than I already do. Which I do not need!



I decided that I wanted to set myself a challenge quite some time ago but have never worked up the balls to. I figured with the upcoming new year what better time to make a resolution.

Yesterday I deactivated my facebook account and god it felt good. Beforehand I found myself getting stressed scrolling down the pages and ensuing that I would see all the posts before I had to get back to work or get dressed to go out. I must admit the first day was hard, I did think "I wonder whats on facebook" whilst showering this morning. But I'm OK now.



So here is my pledge as of 1 January I am going to not buy anything new for a year and cull the crap! Subscribe on the right of the page and follow me on my journey and you never know I might inspire you to cull some of your crap.