Lighter Living Task #7 Clothes

Fast fashion and too much clothing stuffed in our closets is another form of clutter.

As a starting point, we need to understand Fast Fashion. According to Wikipedia, “Fast fashion is a contemporary term used by fashion retailers for designs that move from catwalk quickly to capture current fashion trends. A second, critical definition adds that fast fashion is not only about quickly moving from runway to store to consumer, but also to the garbage.”

According to the NY Times book review article, How Fast Fashion is Destroying the Planet, Tatiana Schlossberg discusses the book FASHIONOPOLISThe Price of Fast Fashion and the Future of Clothes by Dana Thomas. “More than 60 percent of fabric fibers are now synthetics, derived from fossil fuels, so if and when our clothing ends up in a landfill (about 85 percent of textile waste in the United States goes to landfills or is incinerated), it will not decay.” [Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #6 Getting Your Affairs in Order

Statistically, most people do not have a Will and important documents are either non-existent, dated or in chaos.

This week’s task of getting one’s affairs in order isn’t easy and may take time. I wrote a blog for HomeWatch Caregivers in 2019 that I want to suggest you read at the starting point. [Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #5 Collections

Collections can be fabulously fun but also potentially a burden to those we leave behind.

This week I will talk about collections. Collections can be meaningful for the collector. It can be fun to search for new additions. It may be a source of pride to show others your collections. I am not suggesting to stop doing something that brings you immense pleasure. If however, the collection has lost its favor with you, it may be time to find a new home for it. [Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #4 Taxes

Tax receipts and old returns can become clutter.

This week we tackle tax prep and old tax returns. First let’s talk about old tax returns. A few years ago, I cleared out my mom’s house when she moved to an assisted living facility. In her basement, I found old tax returns from the 1980’s. I had some massive shredding to do!

So how long do you need to keep old returns? [Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #3 Family Treasures

The younger generations may soon forget about or throw out precious family memorabilia if they don’t know the story behind the object.

This week, find a family treasure and make sure the story is recorded about its significance. Record in writing and tell a family member as much as you know about it.

My dad told me the story of a ball knit by his grandmother, my great-grandmother Caroline Hildebrand (1859-1929). [Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #2 Closets

Closets are often filled with clutter. Perhaps they are stuffed to the brim of things we no longer use but have not taken the time to sort.

This week, pick a closet, any closet. Grab some trash bags or empty boxes and set some time aside to tackle this project. First, empty it. Take every item out and then clean the closet by vacuuming or dusting.

Before putting anything back in, ask yourself if you love it or use it. For clothes, make sure it still fits, looks good on you and that you have worn it recently or in the last year or season.

Place items in bags destined to donate, consign or to sell. Thin out duplicates such as too many towels in a linen closet. You can also have a ponder pile or bag to look at later.

[Read more…]

Lighter Living Task #1 Refrigerator and Pantry

https://www.amazon.com/dp/0998650943

Lighter Living Task #1

Let’s consider food storage and food waste as we declutter our homes.

This week we are in the kitchen and in particular, the refrigerator. Begin by removing every item and washing off the shelves and drawers. Then before any item goes back in, check the expiration date and look for mold. Throw away old and expired items. Consider tossing food that isn’t good for you. Perhaps re-shock with healthier items. [Read more…]

Favorite books of 2019

I am a voracious reader and read over 50 books in 2019. Some books are for research for my own writing. Other books were a selection for book clubs I belong to.

I have a picked just a few favorites as I do every year for you to consider if you are looking for your next good read. I review every book I read and if you want to follow my reviews throughout the year, be sure to click “follow” on my Goodreads profile and you will be notified of each review shortly after I post one.

 

This Tender LandThis Tender Land by William Kent Krueger
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The author describes the book as a tale of four orphans who set sail together on an odyssey. And what an odyssey it was! I was hooked from the beginning. Each part was unforgettable. My heartstrings were often pulled hard as I became attached to each character. I covered my eyes or cried a few tears or cheered wildly. The author wrote with such compassion for humanity but showed the dark side too. A thread of hope was present throughout, which I appreciated.

 

EducatedEducated by Tara Westover
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book will probably be one of the best of the year and I read an average of a book a week. I experienced a wide range of emotions. Unchecked and untreated mental illness coupled with physical and emotional abuse were horrific. Not allowing school or medical care was incomprehensible. Needless suffering and isolation from the rest of the world was shocking. It was also compelling, inspiring and hopeful that anyone could escape such conditions and thrive. Bravo Tara Westover!

 

Where the Crawdads SingWhere the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved this story! It was written with vivid words that brought the marsh girl and her surroundings to life. Suspenseful to the end. Even though I have finished the book, I still keep thinking about it days afterwards. Deserving of acclaim and I wholeheartedly give it a thumbs up.

View all my reviews

[Read more…]

Baby Steps to Lighter Living

If you have decided to downsize or declutter your home, you may feel overwhelmed. Clearing clutter is best done in smaller steps on a regular basis. You may also want to schedule days to work on thinning out your stuff. Mark it in your calendar!

In the movie What About Bob, there is a fabulous scene about Baby Steps.

[Read more…]

Giving is a Gift-Write a Review!

Giving is so easy to do but also so easy not to do. Remember that when you give a review, you may be making someone’s day and giving them hope. There are so many ways to give if we just take the time!

I recently went to California and found a coffee shop/juice joint that I loved and went to three times in the course of a weekend! I went wild and gave them reviews and raves on Yelp, Trip Advisor, Instagram and Facebook. The owner and worker bees were thrilled and so grateful. In particular I loved the Coconut Activated Charcoal latte, which I have pictured here. So, if you find yourself in Newport Beach, go to Juice Mi!

Small shops and restaurants are great places to start reviewing to help give them a boost. Pick your favorite platform and give your favorite spot a shout out!

At the end of the year, charities are often in desperate need of donations, particularly financially. Why not research and donate to three charities this month! You can also drop off clothing, canned foods, etc. or spend some time volunteering. In November, I donated to The Gathering Place, Warren Village and Nica Nadadores. [Read more…]