I'm back from my weekend away and settling back in. Time for the next declutter your home and mind challenge. This week's challenge is to clean out your cleaning supplies! It is becoming more and more clear how many harmful chemicals are lurking in the cleaning products in our cupboard. Time to clean up our health and clean up our environment by cleaning OUT these products!
Hand-me-downs are one thing I actually advocate storing and saving. For one: saving clothes from our older kids to pass down to the younger kids, and accepting hand-me-downs from other families, makes it possible to raise a large family without going broke. Equally important is the benefit for our planet. It seems wasteful to me to purchase an entire new wardrobe for each child in every season. Saving money on clothing allows our family to have wonderful vacations and adventures that we may not be able to enjoy if we were not living frugally.
Books are my biggest weakness when it comes to living minimally. I love books, and I love holding onto and re-reading books. Certain books I have I've read 5 times cover to cover. Others I reference constantly. Still others I've been carrying around for years waiting for the perfect time to read (or re-read them). Over the past couple years I've made real progress limiting the amount of books in the house, mostly by cutting back on how many I buy, and making better use of the library. 2018 is also the year to begin purging!
Since this is my first blog post I will give you a bit of background about myself.
12 years ago my husband and I bought our first home. It was a huge 4 bedroom, 4 story home in a completely renovated 100 year old farm house.
It met all our criteria: enough rooms that we could each have an office, as well as a spare bedroom. It was also in the country, on a 17 acre property.
As an added bonus one bedroom was in the converted attic on the top floor. I was working from home and it was important to me to have a division between "work" and "home" so I loved that we had an entire floor dedicated only to my office.
Fast forward 12 years and we are now the proud parents to 5 amazing children and still have our same dog and cat as when we moved in. Needless to say home offices and personal space in our huge home are a thing of the past (and possibly future).
In the present however (despite our best efforts) we are overflowing with stuff.
My stuff. Husband's stuff. Kid stuff (x5). Pet's stuff. Toy stuff. Winter stuff. Summer stuff.
Skating stuff. Yoga stuff. Game stuff. Cooking stuff. Cleaning stuff. stuff Stuff STUFF!!
Over the past few years I've become increasingly aware of the link between our external environment and our internal environment.
At first I began noticing how our thoughts and internal patterns affected our external environments, the experiences we attracted to ourselves, our ability to move through life with ease, or not. Simply put... what we think is what we get.
After awhile it became evident that this process works in both directions. The external environment also affects our internal workings, our peace and ability to maintain a positive state of mind.
My personal yoga practice has been developing and evolving over the past 20 years since I attended my first class as a teenager. Over these years I've been constantly working on "Making Space".
This idea can mean many things in yoga:
For 2018 my goal is to clear space in my physical environment, the place where I live, work and love. By cleaning out my home I hope to feel reciprocal effects within my body and mind.
Cindy Stewart is a mom of 5, wife, daughter and owner of Sunbeam Yoga. She is an RYT and has a passion for sharing yoga with children.