New Year Winter Refresh

We could leave the Christmas lights up ’til January
This is our place, we make the rules
– Taylor Swift, Lover

Happy New Year! Instead of resolutions this year, I wanted to share out some things I like to do at the beginning of the year so that my mind, body, soul, home, etc. feel refreshed and ready to go for the new year.

Home

  • Take down the Christmas tree (and put the tree out to compost) and decor. *sigh* It’s sad but it must be done. And don’t just throw everything in a box. Take your time to organize everything as you put it back so everything is ready for next year.
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Minimalism and What I Do Spend Money On

Minimalism is wonderful for the environment (less stuff getting thrown away/replaced constantly) and your sanity (less stuff to clean/repair/organize) but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the dopamine hit that frequently comes from shopping. Our household doesn’t spend much on THINGS… whether it be new technology (our television is over 10 years old and still works perfectly!) or clothes/bags/jewelry (yay for thrifting) or cars (we downsized to one car!)… but we do happily spend on fun, meaningful (to us) experiences and services that make life a tiny bit easier. Here are my and my husband’s top fun/unnecessary spends:

  • Travel! Probably the #1 “fun” expense in our household — we stock away a good amount on a monthly basis to explore the world.
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Make Your Clothes Last

A huge part of both the zero waste and minimalist lifestyles involve taking care of what you already own so that you aren’t buying things unnecessarily. This is incredibly important especially when it comes to clothing. A few simple steps can help prolong the life of your clothes and prevent items from inevitably ending up in the landfill or getting downcycled.

  • Wash your clothes gently/per label instructions. I almost always wash my clothes with cold water and on a gentle or “casual” cycle. I then dry my clothing on the low setting (or hang to dry in my closet). It takes a bit longer but my clothes take less of a beating this way.
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The Case For Thrifting Clothes

When it comes to eco-friendliness and clothing, it’s frequently recommended that you buy fewer (and generally more expensive) but ethically made, high quality, and sustainable clothes. Fast fashion is a big no-no. And I’m all for it BUT sometimes it just isn’t practical for certain lifestyles (and budgets!).

Enter thrifting. I work from home and have three (very hairy) dogs. 95% of what I wear is loungewear or athleisure. So my general day to day clothes get a lot of wear and tear from running around with dogs, gardening, and repeatedly wearing favorite sweatshirts and leggings. It wouldn’t matter how high quality the clothes are — nothing can stand up to a rambunctious young husky and two golden retrievers.… // Continue reading.

Simple Tip: How To Use Your iPhone Less

Note: this tip is for iPhone users (since it’s what I use). I’m sure there are ways to do something similar with other phones!

Ever since smartphones became a thing, we’ve all been guilty of looking at our phones a little too often. I was mildly horrified when Apple released the Screen Time feature and I could see exactly how many hours a day I spent on my phone. And, listen, I love smartphones… they’ve made my life better in so many ways (hello Google Maps). However, they’ve also led to some mindless (and time-consuming) scrolling on Instagram. So let’s cut down on some of that and spend more time reading, hanging out with friends, and working on hobbies.… // Continue reading.