Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Old "Stuff" New Year!

I love many things about Christmas time. Mostly the beauty of lights and smells and sparkling things. Family and friends gathering together to eat and drink and play and give and receive. It can also be quite stressful. Expectations run high for a perfect Hallmark Holiday. People get disappointed, kids have issues, money is tight. This year I strove not to get caught up in all that. Money is tight for me, so I kept gift giving to a minimum. A $20 for each grandchild plus something I made or already had around the house was given. Adults got a nice edible treat along with some good coffee beans and/or a lovely box of tea. Most were thrilled with their gifts. I had been putting pressure on myself a few weeks before to give each person more money. Then realized my mortgage was due. I snapped myself back to reality, and paid that important bill first. Each of my grandchildren have so very much in the way of possessions. Lots of relatives pile gifts onto them. I think they choose one or two favorites and ignore the rest. The decision to go minimal was a huge relief for me, and as the weeks go by and kids rooms need cleaning, my hope is that they will be happy with maintaining fewer possessions. Being responsible for so many things is exhausting. This is a small house and there is little room for things. Downsizing is very important!
I love this video of George Carlin talking about "Stuff"

Looking forward to the new year, there is still so much work to do! I am getting a roommate soon. She will be here by January 5th or so. The master bedroom and bathroom need to be totally emptied and cleaned, a hall cupboard will also be hers, so that needs to be emptied. More things need to be purged from my life. I feel like I have been wrangling things back and forth for months. With the garage to studio renovation, the bead studio and just general household possessions of 13 plus years it has been a huge task. The shed in the back yard was full of some yard work tools and garden supplies, but mostly useless "stuff". It is now cleaned out, shelves are installed and it is organized and some things from the garage are now properly stored in the shed. Each week I put out recycling as well as trash from the shed and that is almost all gone. Some construction leftovers are still on my driveway, but that pile is getting smaller each week too. The camping gear I had stored in the garage and then on my driveway for my daughter is now back at her house and the ugly tarp I had covering it is out of my driveway as well. The house will look much nicer when everything else is gone. I like a pretty yard. 

Moving forward to 2012 and a fresh start to the new year is exciting. I can plow myself back into the bead business in a large, clean and organized space. My focus can be back where it belongs, creating new designs, writing instructions, making kits and earning a living doing what I love! I hope your New Year is full of goodness and fun and that your burdens will lighten as the year marches on.
Oh, and don't be fearful of 2012. This cartoon sums it up for me! 
Laugh and have fun.


  1. it is so nice to create clean new spaces and get rid of stuff that holds us back. Glad you're new space if ready and I'm sure it will yield great things.

  2. your post is an inspiration..this year i've heard so many of my friends comment on a
    dislike(?)of the Holiday over doing,kids get too much,people are stressed,finances are tight, their desire to down size and simplify is loudly voiced..i keep wondering if the real reason for Christmas is getting lost in the
    "I Wants" would be nice to see more energy put into charitable things and less shopping.
    maybe that's a conflict since I produce things to buy..but giving handmade and forego the Mall next year would be nice ..your gift giving solutions were perfect.

  3. That George Carlin clip is one of my favorites! He was such a genius. He has a rant on airlines that I recite to myself whenever I travel. :)

    I admire your approach to gift giving, and I also admire your downsizing! When I get home, I might have to simplify a little.

    Also, you're spot-on about 2012. I remember when the world was supposed to end in 2000!

  4. I love this George Carlin piece, and it's been a while since I heard it. I always think of houses like that, piles of STUFF with lids on top. I put it on my blog as well.

    I'm excited to meet your roommate! Is she someone that you know, or are you about to meet her too?

  5. Sounds like your feelings about Christmas are on the same level as ours. We are definitely down-sizing even more next year, especially now that postage is going up again and all our family lives in the lower 48, so postage is a biggie for us each year. I hope you got my email about the blog-hop prize...Wow! I love everything you sent. It will all be put to good use. I especially love the Sonoran Sunrise Cabachon, I have been looking for one since seeing one on Heidi Kumalie's web site. (I apologize for mis-spelling her last name if I did). I love her work also. Have a wonderful New Year Jeanette, I enjoy your blog. Thanks again for the prize package. I will post a picture when I use some of the great treasures you sent.

  6. Char, it is good to know the box of treasures went to someone who will love them and make wonderful creations! Thank you for writing to let me know you received the box and are so happy. My heart is warmed! happy New Year to you as well!

  7. Kate, I haven't met my new roommate. She is my friend Nancy's daughter. She will be coming here from Topeka, KS. We have spoken on the phone and texted. Today, I teased her with our 78º weather report. Needless to say, she is rather excited about coming to live here.

  8. Loved George Carlin! So funny, so true. Thanks for the giggle and have a wonderful New Year. Hugs,