I contacted a charity last week about giving up my extra scrapbooking stuff. I went through every scrapbook item I had and collected an entire box of stuff. When was finished I sat down to survey the leftovers. I was shocked to find little improvement. I could still outfit a small scrapbook store. What is minimal about that? Am I a trader to my name the “Aspiring Minimalist?” I have an entire 36-inch tall box of nothing but scrapbook stickers! That is just the beginning of the story. The more I sat there and pondered the situation the worse I felt. What was my excuse for not seriously limiting my scrapbook supplies or letting them go altogether? Future Christmas gifts? Finishing that last book? What explanation is good enough? The truth is none of them. I haven’t scrapbooked in 18 months, my pictures are so unorganized that if they were a treasure map I’d be walking in digital circles.
The truth is, no matter how minimal I want to be, my craft supplies are my secret stash. The very last place I said I was going to tackle in my downsizing efforts. My grand canyon of emotion. I have been collecting them forever and for some reason, they hold a place in my heart. Everyone has a last thing when they decide minimalism is for them. What is it? Well, it’s different for each individual. It could be crafts, letters, ceramics, or tools whatever we claim is the glue that binds our memories or ambitions to us. The “I am not me or can’t live without ____________.” Now I am sure there are some hard core veterans of minimalism out there who didn’t have a single challenge. Who persevered and in a matter of days or weeks were finished. An exclusive club of people who knew exactly how to get what they wanted and let nothing stand in their way. A club that I can only dream of joining at this point. My hats off to them! The rest of us, however, have to struggle with points of contention.
So where does this leave me? Do I sell my collection and buy the scanner that I want? Do I find yet a second charity or do I call all my kids over and let them sort through whats left? Before I make another excuse why I am keeping an emporium in my spare room, I better figure it out. When it is all said and done I probably really only have a few items that would cause utter devastation in my soul if they were gone, and they will all fit in nicely in my travel trailer. They are all extremely portable and easy to display even in the smallest of spaces.
My husband is already a minimalist of sorts, he has very few belongings. He was in the Navy and had a small shoe size locker to store all the things in the world that were important to him. He has a lot of tools but I doubt the paring down will be emotional or sentimental to him. He does a lot of handy work so we will definitely need to find him some storage space. We talked about possibly buying a small shed after we locate to our land. He definitely needs to pare down his screw drivers. That can wait though until we move and it shouldn’t take long. Most people don’t understand minimalism or embrace it. I was happy for 53 years being a maximalist until I wasn’t. However, many people could benefit from a good declutter. I encourage you to give it a try. Throw out a thing or two you have no attachment to. You’ll be happy you did!