Friday, March 23, 2018

Journey to Minimalism - 8 Months

We have been becoming minimalist for 8 months now!

One thing that has really surprised me after decluttering for 8 months, is how far we are from being minimalist.  I really thought I would see a very minimal house, but this process really takes a lot of time.

I declutter an area and live with it for a while, then as time passes by I usually realize there is a lot more that I don't use.  When I find items I haven't used in 8 months I go through again and get rid of them.

I know everyone does this process in different ways, but for me slow has been the best way.  I have a fear that I will not have enough of something (like towels) and then I will have to shop again for items.  SOO going slow has been the key for me.  At this point there has never been one moment of regret for anything I have donated or thrown out.

There have been so many changes since starting this process:
  • Living more intentionally = I am now thinking about the purchases I make and how that will impact my house; adding clutter, wasting money, the impact on the environment...
I am also intentionally thinking about how my time is spent and what I can accomplish if I use my time wisely.  I use to watch so much TV!  That is what I did to pass my time, which is fine if that is what you love, but I was doing it out of habit and once I stopped I didn't miss it at all.  In my free time I have started a YouTube channel, we have traveled to New Zealand, I have read about 10 books or more in the last 8 months.  I can't believe the amount of time I was wasting.
  • I have a lot more free time because I am not having to waste a lot of my time organizing my stuff.  I use to constantly have to organize toys and cupboards to try and fit everything in and now I just clear it out ha ha.
  • We are trying to become more eco friendly in our house.  There are a lot of small changes that I am making and have made to be less wasteful.  
    • We no longer buy water! What a waste of money and all that plastic that is ruining our environment.  We have a water purifier and we use reusable bottles.
    • We don't use paper towels as much.  Grant always used a paper towel to dry his hand and I finally convinced him to use a towel.  I actually hid the paper towels, we still have them for an emergency, but we don't use them very often. 
    • I have stopped using plastic wrap. 
    • I unplug everything that we are not using.
    • I try to turn off the lights and use natural light during the day.  
    • I try to schedule all of my shopping in one trip where I am already out so there is less driving.
    • I only do super full loads of laundry.
    • I bring my own bags to the market and when shopping I try to pick glass bottles instead of plastic.  I started buying eco friendly product instead of the products I use to buy.  
    • I am cooking more food at home and making more homemade snacks instead of packaged snacks.
    • When I buy packaged foods I look for things that have the least amount of packaging
    • I have gone to using bar soap in the shower (saving the environment from those huge plastic soap bottles)
    • I have started using reusable diapers again.  I had used them on and off, but when we are home I am using them.
We are defiantly not perfect, but we are trying our best to make a small difference.  I am currently researching more ways to cut our waste.
  • Spending our money on experiences instead of things.  We have been taking a lot more day trips around California and using our money we are saving on vacations.  As well as saving for the future.
  • We are eating healthier.  After watching some documentaries and reading lots of articles we have learned about how important it is to buy non gmo and organic food. Not only for your health but for the future of our world.  I know it can be a little more expensive, but when its possible I try to buy organic food.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018


We had one really fun night out on the town.
The funny story about this night was when I was trying to get ready!  It was 100% humidity (and I am not joking) and I took a hot shower!  Why did I do this?  I got out of the shower and I could not stop sweating.  It took me forever to get ready because its impossible to put makeup on when your face is wet with sweat.  This actually made us late to the party we were going to.

We had the best time out!

 After the first party we met some of our friend's in a down town bar.

The kids loved playing outside in the dirt!  The rain never slowed them down.

Saying one last goodbye to Nana and Col.



Teresa and Grandad

A fun day at the park with friends. 

 We had a tour of the fire station by Grant's friend from school.  We actually got to ride in the fire truck!  Emmett had all his dreams come true that day.

Before we left Teresa make us a delicious cake for Emmett's 4th birthday.

Here we are saying one last goodbye in the airport.  We made it to the gate just in time!

 Traveling is not easy, but totally worth the effort!

Finally home!

Friday, March 2, 2018


Half way through our trip we decided to go to Rotorua for one night.  I was really surprised at how much there is to see and do there.  We only had 2 days so we packed a lot of action into each day.  When we arrived we checked into our hotel and headed straight for the Redwoods Tree walk.  All the grandparents were in one car and us "kids" were in the other car.  The grandparents hauled out of there and left us driving in circles not knowing where we were even meant to go.  It turned out to be a communication break down, but once that was sorted out we walked in the redwoods.  

This tree walk is really worth doing!  There were bridges attached to all the trees and we were able to walk from tree to tree!  It would have been cool to just sit up there and hang out for a while, maybe have a picnic? (but with kids this was not an option lol).  Also they have a night walk where all the bridges are lit up, we debated going back for the night walk, but decided to have a picnic dinner at a park.  At this free park there are natural hot springs that you can play and swim in.

On our way to Rotorua we stopped in Hobbit Town.  We did not do the tour, but I heard it is really awesome if you are into the movies.

Here is the Redwoods Treewalk. 

 Calvin had to be in this contraption for safety reasons and no child could be held on the walk.

 The next morning we went to Lake Rotorua and the kids played at the water front park while I took off on my own to explore.

 I found all of these awesome natural hot springs.

 You wouldn't want to fall into this water!

Around lunch time we met the grandparents at the louge.  When we got to the top of the mountain we each took 3 rides on the louge.  Emmett loved it, but he had to ride with an adult.  This louge is not for young kids and its not for someone who has never driven something.  Its not fool proof in other words!  You have to actually drive and if you miss a turn you will be off a cliff ha ha.

We had the best time!

NZ Trip Part 1
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