Over the years, our life has become simpler...
We work less, buy less & do less.
Last week, we spent a wonderful few days with our kidlets - all of them, here, together, enjoying each others' company.
Feasting together, playing board games, sharing stories, talking pretty much non-stop, laughing & exchanging our (late as usual) Secret Santa gifts - Perfect!
As always, the Secret Santas' have oozed with imaginative creativity - much more fun than spending hours & money buying countless gifts. Our rules are: Only spend up to £10 & it should be home made or second hand - just one person to buy for... Simple!!!
There is a lovely warm feeling having our gang around us & we feel topped up with love, hugs & fun.
There's nothing quite like it!
The week before was spent celebrating 3 birthdays... Hugo & Jess both turned 18 & Bebe's birthday was sandwiched between the two - she is now 85.
When Bebe moved in with us last year, we were able to cut down & reorganise our work to fit around her.
After years & years of working weekends - we dreamed of stopping, so we did & we still continue to enjoy & appreciate our time off. As last year moved on, we realised that we also needed to put one day aside each week purely for us. We dropped another 2 jobs & gained an easier, more flexible one which is working out really well.
During some difficult times with Bebe we've had to postpone jobs to be at home with her or just to recuperate from too many sleepless nights... It's worked out fine & through all the crappy times, we've remained disciplined in making sure we take time out.
We have constantly been impressed with how well we live on less.
Neither of us are into buying stuff - we only replace things when absolutely necessary, even our clothes keep going until they fall apart. We're not into lots of gadgets & pretty much everything we own has either been given to us, bought second hand or we bought it many years ago. We don't use fancy toiletries or any cosmetics whatsoever. We don't spend on hair being cut, coloured, plucked, shaved or styled. Our desk top computer died last summer & we decided not to replace it, so we spend less time online - once you stop to do other things, you really don't miss it. Our electric bill has also reduced over £200 per year - amazing!
We just like life to be simple, which enables us to save for doing the things we do enjoy - buying good food, eating out occasionally & going on road trips.
This year we will have been in our house for 10 years...
The longest we have ever spent in one place!
Hugo's going off to university in the autumn & Bebe will probably be moving into a care home before long - her mental health has deteriorated quite drastically since Christmas, so she has had to go for a psychiatric assessment & we've been told that it may now be for the best that she remains in care. Her behaviour had become beyond challenging & it was quite a relief when the complex care team stepped in. So we're thinking there will be some changes for us too this year.
We have nothing planned as yet, we also have the kitties to consider - but we are starting to prepare.
We have lots of junk to sort through; 3 rooms worth of accumulated stuff we haven't used in years or have never used - mostly stuff given to us & which we dumped straight in storage. We also have hundreds of books which need to be sorted.
We are not in any rush, have the time to creep & go, but are very excited about our decluttering - it makes sense that if we are already living so simply, we should clear the house of everything we don't need...
Here's some inspiration: Zen Habits - 5 Minute Decluttering Tips
We don't know what's around the corner, but what we do know is that we are definitely happier with less!
Kay & Sime