Yesterday while watching television, a report came on that this week in October is the “skinniest” all of us will be. The explanation for this by the “expert” is that come next Monday, in the case of us Canadians, we will start eating up a storm! This led me to think not only about my Thanksgiving dinner menu. All the stuff that will be purchased and ate until January 1, 2017 rushed into my consciousness.
North Americans it seems are the leaders in consumerism. We buy just about every single ‘innovation’. We wait in lines from the crack of dawn to give our money for them! Stuff is the lord and master of so many of us. It is second only to food – hence the concern about weight gain over the next few months. While I stand to lose some pounds, my eating habits have changed a lot. So I might not be one of the millions packing on the pounds beginning Thanksgiving day and onward.
Looking around my sparsely furnished apartment, I see the progress made where it concerns decluttering. Yet, I still have my list of “Cannot Do Without Stuff.”
All This Stuff!
For the first twelve years of my life, we lived in the then middle class neighbourhood of Pembroke Hall in Kingston, Jamaica. Labels are not my favourite things but to contextualize this conversation about using less, it feels necessary to describe the social-economic background of my first community.
Frankly, for most of those years, I did not really understand what it meant to be “poor.” Judging from today’s standards and the political jargon of the time – I guess we were poor or at least residing on the border of poverty.
Looking around our house you really could not tell that my mother was a “hustler” – doing anything and everything imaginable to keep a roof over our heads and our belly full. We had a Phillips stereo from the 1960’s, its matching television set, more glassware and cutlery than Ammars, bed linen galore, area rugs – everything that any ‘ghetto’ Martha Stewart would want in her home.
Did we need all of this stuff? No, we did not.
An Abundance Of Stuff
Considering that my mother never owned her own house, all these trappings decorated many rented accommodations. My friends know that unlike most of them, I love relocating. Why? It was just something we did when I was growing up. I remember us moving six times in two years and twice into the same house under disguise. And all that stuff had to be carefully wrapped, packed and transported!
That tradition of regularly moving was passed on to me. Since her birth to when she moved out at 18 years old, my daughter has moved with me, including to Canada and around Edmonton, at least ten times. None of these moves had to do with us not being able to pay our rent, like my mother. Rather, we moved “up” as well as into our ‘owned’ home.
The accumulated moves over my life meant there was a lot and I mean a lot of stuff to pack, discard, give away, etc.
Am I done moving? No. I actually love it. However, the amount of stuff that would go with me is minimal. I am a re-born minimalist and cheap skate! LOL My current accommodation has the bare essentials and most of them were given to me, bought second-hand or inexpensive enough to have paid for themselves in the three months since purchased.
Must Have List
There is few stuff that are ‘must-haves’ for me, aside from my medication. They are:
- Heinz Kitchen
- Good coffee
- Uggs winter boots (and my daughter has touted Flurries boots to me so this one is questionable)
- La Senza bra and underwear
Everything else is either negotiable, replaceable or I can do without.
What about you? What is on your “Must Have Stuff” list? Could you live with only five?
Do share your list with me in the comments section below. Should you need help deleting some items off your list, check out my coaching services and let us erase the totally unnecessary today! Subscribe and never miss one of our posts!
Enjoy this skinny week!