A Minimalist’s day

Often my days are about doing daily simple chores and going about my life.

I never overload my schedule and even when I worked at the library l kept my schedule simple and unburdened. Now it is even more so as I don’t have a go-to job.

I start my day with getting dressed even down to my walking shoes. I drink a quick cup of coffee that was prepared the night before and then is on an automatic timer for 5:30 am.   If the dishwasher needs emptying I’ll do that.Then I head out the door and drive 1/2 a mile to our park and walk for 32 minutes. Then upon returning home, I get more coffee and then write my list for the day and what I want/need to accomplish. I include simple things like dust, prep for dinner and what we’re having, budgeting stuff, gym, etc.  I browse thru the news and some blogs.

Then I’ll do a few quick chores, like make the bed, take out the laundry, swish and swipe the bathroom. I don’t have young children but both my adult children live at home so there’s always some extra things(dishes, laundry,) that might need attention.

If I’m going to be baking bread like today I start prepping thing and get my starter ready and then the dough. Or if I’m making my delicious maple granola, I’ll get out oats, maple syrup etc.  Otherwise, I wipe down the counters and make sure they are clear and uncluttered. Plus I do this in each room. Our house is tiny so really it doesn’t take but 10 minutes max.  But it is by having minimalized our things that it is a quick process.

I  am amazed at how simplified my life is since embracing minimalism.  It is so true, less is more.

The rest of the day is either going to the gym or whatever chores might need doing. If there’s a project I’m working on, I may do it after lunch. RIght now, I’m still working on the barn decluttering so I may go out for a bit to do that. I prep for dinner between 4-5 depending on what I’m making.  I also usually read for a few hours and then dinner.  After dinner, we might have an outside fire and talk about the day or current events. I go to bed fairly early 9pm or so. I might read in bed for 1/2 hour but generally lights out by 9:30 or 10.

Dinner tonight is chicken noodle soup and homemade bread.

9aff9c2e96b462ea1d37c12c64c687dc

 

Simple Sunday​

Another gorgeous day. The air is crisp and smells lovely of mowed grass and split oak.

B and Z used the wood splitter(rented) for about 5 hours and did most all f the huge oak we had taken down last year. He still needs to do another round with pine. We should be good for wood for 2 years maybe. In the future, we plan to switch to a propane fireplace but that’s aways off yet. Projects are getting done and it ‘s always a nice sense of accomplishment.  I think as we’ve become more minimalistic there’s less to take care of in some cases as we’ve gotten rid of a lot. Around the property, there are still some areas to take care of but it’s mostly garden and drought resistance plants with a little patch of lawn. The barn is ongoing, as it’s always needing to be tidied and decluttered. But it is progressing. I’m going to pare down the Christmas stuff, even more, this year. Right now I have 3 bins of stuff and I ‘d like it to be 2.  My new motto is ONE LESS BIN.  which actually has worked pretty well in all of my storage areas.

The barn is ongoing, as it’s always needing to be tidied and decluttered. But it is progressing. I’m going to pare down the Christmas stuff, even more, this year. Right now I have 3 bins of stuff and I ‘d like it to be 2.  My new motto is ONE LESS BIN.  which actually has worked pretty well in all of my storage areas. I also prefer to decorate with natural things like pinecones, branches, rocks, corn stalks ( for fall) and other seasonal natural things. I use to have lots of fall crap but when I started decluttering I just let it go. I find the process quite interesting from a psychological perspective. It’s as if layers keep coming off.  That’s one reason, I think. KonMarie isn’t just a one-shot deal. If I did that and nothing else, I think at different points I’d feel joy in some things and then later not.

There have been many many things I never thought I’d get rid of a few years ago and now I’m like meh, I don’t need or want this any more. So it is a process.

This week I’m in the living room zone (which we call a front room) (probably from another era), so I had B move my Heywood back under the TV and moved out the dest/table that I had there. It’s one less piece of furniture. Right now it’s on the sun porch, but I’ll take it too the thrift store in a few weeks after I think about could it be repurposed somewhere. It’s kinda a nice mid century looking table but not old. I actually got it at Target like 4 years ago.  So we’ll see. Each week I’m in a different zone, I try and do one thing for the area. Either declutter or just re look at how the space is being used. Of course, each zone gets a deep clean.

I got out the Zojurishi and have a loaf of sourdough baking right now. It’s bread season and I usually start off by using the bread machine and then move on to just using the Kitchen aid mixer and letting it do its thing in a bowl.

I also made spaghetti sauce for Sunday Supper. One is a meat sauce and the other marinara. I’ll boil some thin spaghetti and make a salad.

Today was a gym day. I went alone as my daughter wasnt feeling great.

 

 

A fall day!

Yesterday was my husband’s birthday.

IMG_0965.jpg

Looking good for 67!!! I love you.  I made an apple pie with apples from Machado’s orchard which is just down the road in Auburn.  It came out good. I think I should peel the apples next time but it still tasted good. His request for dinner was Sub sandwiches so I made a big cheese one for him with pickles, pepperoncini, and other things.

Only 3 more years till retirement!!!!

Well, we were out walking at 6am. Still darkish but it gets light pretty quickly. I was going to go the gym but I think I’ll just go tomorrow on my regular day and just do some odds and ends today. B is splitting wood with the wood splitter and my son is trying to fix the brakes on his Subaru.

Our weather is so nice. Things are turning golden as they do here in the foothills. We don’t have the colors like back east but we do get variations of yellows and oranges and the Chinese pistachio tree turns a brilliant red. Also, liquid ambers turn shades of red too.  The mornings are cool but afternoons are lovely. We started having our afternoon wine by a fire in the fire pit so that’s always nice.

I took down a shelf in the tiny bathroom because they were getting rusty around the edges.( they were a stainless steel). I tried to clean it but it didn’t work. So they held our white hand towels and wash cloths and the water pik. So having taken it down, it looks way better. Less visual clutter. so I’m not going to replace them. But I bought 2 hooks to hang hand towels on.  So by reducing those shelves, it opens up that space. I also priced out a new bathroom cabinet as the one in there came from a yard sale when we moved in here. So it seems a good time to replace it with something nicer and it’ll spruce up the space.  I priced one out at Lowes and it’s anywhere from $40- $100.  The one I liked was @ $70.

Tonight I’m making some wild salmon with rice and I’ll grill some tofu too.

 

 

Decluttering and redoing the front entry and office.

So, we had to buy a new front door after this happened.IMG_0830

Out front door was a French door with 2 panels on either side. So this winter, the inside of the dual panes started to get condensation. The door was 20 years old. But then last week I heard a pop and snap and one of the panels completely cracked. A project we were putting off till who knows when now had to be done pronto. That meant rebuilding a new door frame and the wall next to it as the other door had 3 doors and this new one would just be single.

I found a nice inexpensive Craftsman style door and we went down to Lowes to pick it up. Then B pulled the old door out and rebuilt the frame. So it looks quite nice. The plywood on the other side isn’t done yet but will be soon. then we will have to put up shake shingles to match the house and then paint.

But we also pulled everything out of the room and including his desk and realized the desk was just IMG_0844too dark and big to put back in. I have it listed for Free on a local group site.

So, of course, one thing leads to another and we’ve emptied the room and will put back only what is useful and beautiful. We decided to go down to Ikea as they had a certain desk on the family discount ending today.  We looked at it and decided it was too big too so we picked a smaller one, a BIlly book shelf and a filing cabinet.

But then we decided that since everything was out and we had a package of unused flooring to get more of the same and redo the floor. We’re not pulling up the vinyl tiles as it will help be an insulator as this original was just a porch.  So more projects. Everything is all over the place ( which is like craziness for me), but I will endure. By the weekend, all will be back to normal( I hope).

We decluttered another huge load from the barn 2 bookcases, lots of little stuff and a rug.  so that is good and now, the barn is looking so good with the extra shelves for my son’s (crap) of stuff…. I’m sure it’s useful in his eyes.

that’s it for now.  Dinner is Taco Tuesday. Black bean quesadillas.

 

Sunday Stuff

So, the latest news is my son isn’t going to be going to SFSU.  insert tears:( He decided that he doesn’t want to be burdened with the student loans in the amount of 25,000. We were going to be co signers on the one loan but then it turned out we were to be primary so we said we wouldn’t do that. But there are lots of private loans that he could take out and we could co -sign and then after a period of time, we would get removed from the loan. Then he found out at orientation that even though they said they accepted the 105 units from Sierra College, only 70 units would be applied to his degree. So essentially that means 2 years and that then is 2 years of student loans. So, I agree that is way too heavy a burden for a 25-year-old. ( when he finished). So at least for now, that’s the update. I wish we could just pay for it for him but we don’t have that kind of money and it’s too close to retirement to take out a loan for that.

It’s quite hot here again 101 today. I think this week it’s supposed to drop at least into the 90’s.

We went to drop off Good will stuff yesterday and because they were so full of stuff wouldn’t  take our items. What the heck.. they make so much money off of all this free stuff they’re given and they can’t figure out their intake system.  So, it’s in the back of my VW and I’ll try the big Goodwill today. I have a prescription to pick up and I need to get cat food.  WE did manage to drop a full box of VHS and hardback books that my son didn’t sell at the yard sale. That was at the pet bookstore.

We’ve had good success with organizing the barn shelves and it’s looking good. There’s still left over flea market stuff I need to process or my son does. But right now it’s all sitting in front of the barn and is a mess. But we have made progress.

My iPad just died this morning when I went to open it to write a review for NetGalley where I get free e books in exchange for reviews.  That’s where I have Bluefire downloaded so I can read the PDF versions of the books. So I opened my IPad and it blinked and lights went out.  It is 7 years old or maybe 8. It’s the second generation I pad my husband won in a raffle at work. They don’t do that anymore nor do they do the trips like the one he won when we went to Hawaii. So 7-8 years is pretty good but now I’ll have to figure something out. My kindle fire doesn’t have the blue fire so not sure what I’ll do.

Today is a gym day and dinner is a big chopped salad, grilled chicken, and grilled tofu. Oh, and I think I’ll make some couscous. Oh, and I have left over pizza dough so I’ll grill a pizza. I saw an interesting recipe from William Sonoma that was zucchini and pesto pizza.

On decluttering, my son is bringing the antique bin table up to his friend’s house and so now that’s gone too. Yeah, less stuff is more space.

 

Simple Sunday

Well, my son did the flea market yesterday and even with 100+ temperatures, he made over $200 for his college fund.  So a lot of the vintage stuff I gave him sold quickly and some antique stuff. Nothing too remarkable but it’s gone and he got a little money.  So I’m very pleased. By 12 most vendors were packing up because most people don’t come out in the heat of the day. But he got rid of the 2 mission style chairs and a bookcase. So I’m thrilled.

If you’re looking for a summer dinner, pizza on the gas grill is amazing and easy.  You do need to heat the gas grill up to the highest it’ll go @ 800 or whatever it says and then be sure to spray the grill with Pam or I use Costco’s Canola spray. Then when you’ve heated up the grill for say, 20 minutes you can do the pizza. You must have a pizza peel and be sure to use semolina flour under the pizza dough. Just a sprinkling. then roll out or stretch the dough till it’s about 12 ” in diameter.  I’ve used homemade dough and Trader Joes and both work fine.  Then here’s the trick, use just a few tablespoons of sauce,  some mozzarella, then a few toppings but very sparse. I use buffalo mozzarella along with the regular shredded but not a lot. Then i may add a sprinkling of red onion, black olives and if I have any pepperoni or salami and top with a few shreds of fresh basil.

IMG_0273

Cheese and pepperoni pizza with basil.

Then you must shake the pizza peel to be sure the pizza is moving and then slide onto the hot grill.  Close the grill top. Don’t move it for about 5 minutes till the crust starts to cook and gets a nice char.  Then rotate once 1/2 way and close the top again. Check in another 5 minutes. It cooks very fast and is superior to anything you could buy out. Try it out and it saves the kitchen from getting too hot.

We went to the farmers market yesterday and bought some nice veggies, broccoli, etc. Then I bought a 3 pack of organic strawberries to make a jam.  I came home unloaded stuff and started the jam. I ended up with 5 pints from the 3 pack. Very tasty. I may go get more next week as berries must be at there peak.

Today was a gym day and I did the bathroom zone for tomorrow. Quick wipes of shelves, wash window and mirrors and reorganizing the small dresser we use for combs, brushes etc.

I wash sheets on Sunday and towels so I’m off to finish that.

Dinner is a huge chopped salad with stuff we got at the farmers market yesterday and I put a turkey breast in the crockpot. I use the kosher turkey breast from Trader Joes. Quite good.  I’m going to use some Tofurky turkey slices for the veg with gravy.

Still really hot here 101 today. 😦

 

It’s July

I have had another great few weeks since seeing my oncologist and just living life.  We had that heat spell which was difficult. But now it’s been lovely. Low 90’s predicted for the next 2 weeks or so. I am so glad I got the pool for B for father’s day. We are all enjoying it.

 

IMG_0805.jpgThis sits below the house so it’s nice. We’d ( okay me) like a deck even a small one on that upper edge. Perhaps in a few weeks after we do a few house projects. We need to replace the front door as the French door has condensation in the panels.  I priced out a nice door for @ $400. That’s project number one. But actually, first, we need to get those shelves in the barn done for my son’s crap  very nice things.  so that’ll be , I hope, this week. Then where we had water leaking in the siding on the sun porch needs to be fixed. this is actually and easy fix, relatively. The siding needs to get taken off, Tyvek put on over new plywood and then the siding put back on.  So that’s project 3. Then miscellaneous projects here and there.

I’ve been doing lots of little projects and decluttering here and there. I finally cleared out this old strange jewelry case that was some relative of my husband. I’ll put the case in my son’s flea market stuff.

Today is a gym day and then I might go to Home Depot.

Dinner is ??? I’m sure I’ll come up with something. last night I made BBQ tempeh. I never knew you needed to steam or simmer tempeh before using. It helps it absorb more flavor. It was ok. Not great but ok.