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The Freedom of Simplicity

In case you just fell out of a tree this morning and lost your memory, my parents are moving in with us in the next month or so.  Troy, Jack, and I have been living in a state of remodel since about June.  I heard horror stories about what a nightmare it would be, but honestly our contractor and his team have been great.  There have been a few hiccups like when we had less than two hours to move an enormous wood pile and all our gardening tools, lawn mower, etc., out from under the deck storage so they could rip the deck down.  That was a fun night….

But seriously, in the grand scheme of things it has been totally fine.  The constant mess and dust have given me so much freedom to embrace a more laxidasical cleaning lifestyle.  Thank the good Lord it is a temporary lapse in my normal cleaning schedule, but it’s still been a nice change of pace.

Some time in late August (maybe early September?) we were asked to empty out our master bedroom closet, as well as the really lovely storage closet we had in our master bathroom.  This sounds weird to follow with just text, but they were building a fake room out of our old master bedroom, and part of the old bedroom was becoming a hallway to our new master bedroom.  And the former doors to our master bathroom and closet were going to be walled off.  We now access our master bathroom through our master closet, via a hole they cut in the wall in our new master bedroom.  We can get to the bathroom because they tore out the former bathroom closet and that is now the access point.

Clear as mud?  I feel like I need to draw a template of all this one day.

Anyway, we had one night to empty out our whole closet, and shove all our bedroom furniture in to a corner of our old bedroom which would be our new cubbyhole for the foreseeable future.  Not knowing how long it would be before we could move back in to our closet, I grabbed a total of about 10 outfits for summer and 10 for fall/winter.  Troy and I moved in to Jack’s closet with our handful of clothes, and the rest got shoved in to garbage bags and hauled in to the attic.


I think we have a Nerf gun problem…

Anyway, it has now been at least four months that three of us have been sharing a closet.  Granted, it is a large closet, but we’re still able to be organized and tidy and share the space efficiently.  And during this process, I have learned a few very important things:

  • Troy has WAY more clothes than me.  I have more hanging in this photo, but we put so much of his stuff in the attic.  I was shocked!
  • No one else in the world notices that you’re wearing the same 10 outfits.  About a month in to this, I made a comment at work about how I kept wearing the same few outfits, and all my friends looked at my like I was crazy.  They seriously hadn’t noticed.  I think as a society, we think so many people are paying attention to us, but seriously, no one could give two shits about what you’re wearing.
  • I have a ton of clothes (but not as much as Troy), and some of them seriously needed to weeded out…even though I do a good job of keeping my wardrobe to what I wear often.  Part of the reason I have so many clothes is that I weigh the same and wear the exact same size of clothes as I did when I got married.  Now all my parts aren’t in the same region as they were almost 11 years ago, and some of the clothes fit a bit differently, but I own lots of clothes and shoes from 2004.  I also seem to be a depository for people who gain or lose weight to dump clothes that no longer fit.  I’m not complaining; of course I love free clothes!
  • If you paid me $1k (please do), I could not name ten items of clothing that are currently in garbage bags in the attic.  I know my maternity clothes are up there, but I’m talking about the stuff I used to wear day to day.  Couldn’t describe it, or tell you what in the hell I am missing right this minute.  That tells me so much about what a freaking waste of time all those clothes are/were.  Once our closet is done and we’re moved back in to it, I’m going to look through all my bags in the attic and take 80% of those items to Goodwill or a consignment store.
  • Having only a handful of clothes to choose from every morning has been so freeing.  I open up the closet in the morning, and say “what haven’t I already worn this week” and I’m dressed in under 30 seconds.

Ridding my life of all that excess has given me such a sense of freedom.  I don’t spend time thinking about what to wear, laundry is simple, and it has encouraged me to stop investing any energy in to “looking cute” of other people.  They seriously don’t care ya’ll.  No one cares.  No one is looking at you.  Wear sweatpants, don’t brush your teeth, or wear a vintage Michael Jordan Space Jams leather letterman’s jacket.


But if you seriously have a Michael Jordan Spam James leather letterman’s jacket, please please please send me a photo.


You might notice that we don’t have doors on Jack’s closet.  The last tenants stole the closet doors.  Yes, seriously stole the doors to the closet.  They were terrible doors, which makes it even funnier that they chose to take them.  When we moved in to this house in 2011, we were broke as a joke, and couldn’t afford to replace them.  We had some old curtains from our last apartment, and hung those up as a temporary fix.  Turns out we all love curtains instead of closet doors so much.  When this remodel is done, we’ll have a new bedroom made out of our old master bedroom, and have made the decision to not put closet doors on the new closet.  We’ll be using old curtains from our former master bedroom.  Maybe when we’re doing having kids that can pinch their fingers and get stuff jammed in the doors, we’ll upgrade, but for now curtains are the tits.


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12 comments on “The Freedom of Simplicity”

  1. If your looking to minimize your wardrobe check out It gives advice on minimalizing your wardrobe and your life. Sounds very much like project 33 on post above. It’s about building a wardrobe capsule for three months. But it give lots of other fashion advice as well as advice for living more simply. I cleaned out my closet over Christmas break and I feel so much better. Less is more!!

  2. You should check out Project 333- You pick 33 items of clothing/accessories (under garments and workout/gardening clothes don’t count) and you stick with them for 3 months and rotate seasonally (if you need too). The website has some great suggestions for making it work. I decided to give it a try and discovered that I don’t even own 33 items of nice clothing. I sometimes dream of revamping my wardrobe, but then I realize that I would probably forget to change and just get paint or some other staining medium all over the good stuff.

    Another fan of no closet doors. We have the bi-fold doors in our latest rental and they are always open. And always in the way. The kiddo’s closet doors were removed so I could stuff her dresser in the closet and I love it. Wish my dresser would fit in my closet.

    My husband has 2-3 times more clothes than I do, most of it t-shirts. The man wears a uniform 5-7 days a week, so the fact that he has that many clothes is just crazy. Every few years I manage to get him to donate a few of his shirts to my crafty causes (t-shirt yarn makes great baskets and rugs), but I am always tempted to go in and steal a few extra just to see if he notices.

  3. I took off the cheap doors off our bedroom closet and replaced them with nothing. A curtain might be nice, but the doors were never missed.

  4. I am looking at my closet while we are packing to move and I am thinking that I should take everything to the consignment store and see what flies. I have formal dresses, suits and every form of clothing that I don’t wear and probably won’t wear until the moths make holes in them. All of my current stay at home mom clothes are in a pile in a chair that I pick from until it is at the bottom and then I do laundry! There is no reason to have almost all of the clothes in the closet and I totally don’t want to move them to the new house. I hope to be strong and part with them. I guess I will see if I can do it!!

    • I agree with the idea of “culling” clothes that are not needed. But I have also seen your wardrobe. You have the tall lean body of a model and everything looks good on you. Also you choose well made classic pieces and mix and match and add accessories perfectly. Your argument for fewer clothes is a just one.

  5. My hubby is the housekeeper for now, and he is much better at it than I ever was….though in my defense, there where 3 popular kids and all of their crews at our place plus I was working full time. Always told him I needed a wife.

    He is so good at laundry that I wore the same outfit to work 2 days in a row! I have been grabbing clothes out of baskets forever and can honestly say that had never happened to me before. My empty closet has curtains too 😉 .

  6. We had a huge assortment of hangers from going through the kid’s closet and giving the old stuff to Goodwill. I picked one color hanger (white), and started putting my clean clothes on that color after wearing them once. Anything that was still on a different colored hanger at the end of six months went to Goodwill. I found I wore the same five, six shirts all the time.

  7. Totally got your SP reference. In fact, made a funny to my husband last night and my joke? Lost on him. Does no one remember Cartman?!? Anywho… Totally get the wardrobe issues. Albeit, I work from home and have been in LOA for the last nine weeks losing my lady parts and relocating to New Mexico all at the same time, I’ve had the same five tshirts and leggings in for weeks. I would love a reason for a business trip right about now just to get dressed and put on makeup!

  8. One of the classic techniques for clearing out the clothes is to bag them for 6 months (or longer) and if you have not had to go find them because you missed or needed them, then pass them on. Regarding the curtain on the closet doors last summer we were repainting a small bathroom/laundry room and hung a curtain for several weeks so we could move things around easier to paint – I really got to love that curtain, mostly because that tiny bathroom got better air circulation and was no longer a little ice box (I hate sitting down on a cold toilet) but also you did not have to turn on the light every time you went in to do your business. I thought that was really cool. The room has no windows.

  9. Um…okay…I’m weird, (duh) but I always notice what people are wearing. My biggest complaint is innapropriate clothing worn by those who just shouldn’t! That being said, I’ve always been fascinated by clothes, fabric, and the history of both. I had a needle in my hand and was sewing something when I was about…at least 50 years ago now.

    I have noticed that very, very few people notice anything more than if you are clean, reasonably dressed, and don’t smell funny. Bizarre clothing gets noticed (the reason it’s usually worn), expensive clothing gets noticed (whether it’s cheap or not), and really ratty, dirty clothing gets noticed. If you want to truly be invisible, just dress like an average person, or get old, whichever. How often do you notice the people around you on a daily basis?

    BTW, you must be really tired, there are some strange spelling errors there towards the end of your post this time! Get some rest, girl, things are only going to get crazier until you and your parents get used to living with each other again. That’s going to be a whole new level of stress, because you’ve all changed over the years and it’s a different dynamic.

    • I assume you are referring to “are the tits”? It was intentional. 🙂 That is an actual saying, circa early 2000’s episode of South Park.

      And I’m always tired. Always. There is no rested version of me.

      • No, the Spoonerism you committed about the “Michael Jordan Spam James” jacket! The shits comment is much older than South Park, probably older than me, even. Heard it from my daddy, who was in the Navy, when I was a wee sprout. Sorry to hear you are so tired, it’s the curse of being a mom, or a woman, these days. I don’t have kids at home or go to a job and I’m still tired all the time.