Some of you may laugh at my choice. In some of my endeavors, I can be anything but simple. But this is what I want for me and my family. I want us to de-clutter and enjoy the simple things in life. I want to start pinching pennies and building our savings. I work in a beautiful assisted living community and trust me, retirement can be expensive. I want us to start living a healthier lifestyle so that we can set the best example for Hayes.
I started my simplify kick by attacking my arts and crafts room/guest bedroom. I threw away enough stuff to fill our big trashcan...like the one we put out for the garbage men to dump. I have also started a stack of things to sell in a garage sale that we will be having this spring. I never thought I would want to have one...but we have so much stuff to get rid of! I decided that it could go if it has been in the same place since I moved into this house in 2009.
Another area that could use simplification is our grocery shopping. I do make a menu each week and then a list so that we have ingredients for dishes to make all week. This eliminates extra shopping trips, which always result in impulse buys for me. It also eliminates the "we have nothing here, let's just go grab something" excuse. Going out to eat can be a huge expense! Last week after our shopping trip, I realized I had bought several staples that we already had in our kitchen. I could have saved $20 if I had checked the fridge and pantry first! So from now on, we will always check our kitchen before we make the list.
Baby food can be a big expense, especially if you are buying the Gerber special food for toddlers. I have been buying those and some foods to cook for Hayes throughout the week. I find myself grabbing the pre-made stuff and then the veggies and fruits I buy for Hayes just sit in the fridge and sometimes go to waste. From now on, no more pre-made food! Hayes can actually eat a lot of what we eat. This is a good way for us to save money and focus on healthy eating. If we are going to feed Hayes what we are eating, it better be healthy!
My big weaknesses are Starbucks and going to lunch with co-workers. I had done pretty good at cutting back on Starbucks...but I slipped after the new year. In fact, the Starbucks workers probably thought my New Year's resolution was to come there every morning. Is their venti decaf nonfat white chocolate mocha to die for? Yes. Do I absolutely need it to make it through the day?
I cannot wait to see what 2012 holds for us with our simplification plan. I hope we become healthier, more financially savvy, and more resourceful. What is your word going to be?
By the way, simplify does not apply to Hayes's first birthday party...which is in a month!