31 Day Simplify Series :: Limit {day 24}

Simplify 300

 

Limit. It sounds so … limiting … doesn’t it? It’s not a very popular concept. Because when you limit yourself, you’re actually saying the dirty little “N-O” word to yourself. And that’s not something we’re keen on doing, is it? {“keen” is an excellent word, by the way}

But without limits, you have excess.

Which is why you need a purpose for your home. So you can know what to limit.

Limiting the things I bring into my home is a relatively new thought for me. It’s a great concept to think about, but it’s not super easy to do. However, here’s one way I’m trying to stay on top of it:

Make a list of wants/needs.
Don’t buy anything unless it’s on that list.

Do you know what? That’s a really hard thing to do. I mean, the making a list part is pretty easy. I’ve been looking for a chair and lamp for my master bedroom, so that’s on the list. I also want to get some patterned sheets for my bed, so that’s on there too. Making a list forces me to think through my purchases before I make them.

Here’s where the list comes in handy: when I spy an amazing clearance section and I see something I want to buy – STOP! – is it on the list? If not, I probably don’t need it. So I pass.

A few weeks ago, I was getting some things at Target when I saw this toilet topper basket. And I was all, “This is what I need!! This would be absolutely perfect! And it’s not a bad price!”

And then something my Dad used to ask me popped into my head,

“Did I need this before I saw it?”

Admittedly, I never understood that when I was younger. But I had a lightbulb moment in the Target aisle and I did, in fact, put the toilet topper basket back on the shelf.

So limits. Do you have them? The best way to start is by figuring out your home’s purpose. Limits make life & home much easier!

This post is part of the 31 day Simplify Series.
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31 Day Simplify Series :: Filter {day 23}

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Yesterday I gave you an assignment. Remember that? Now that you’ve picked out the 3 words to describe your home’s purpose {check here if you need some ideas}, let’s talk about why that’s important.

Unless something has purpose, there are no boundaries. There are also no goals or filters. It’s a total free-for-all. And while that might sound lovely at first glance, it’s really not lovely at all.

If I don’t have purpose for my home, what’s to hinder me from leaving it a complete wreck all the time? Never cleaning anything so that it smells terrible? Filling it to the brim with things that I buy or that people give me because, well, why not?

Without purpose, every question is “why not?” – and there’s no good answer.

However! When I have purpose for my home, every single thing I do in my home can be filtered through that grid. Let’s bring out an example to make things easier to understand.

Let’s say that your 3 purpose words for your home are Welcoming, Simple, & Calm.

Now keeping those words in your mind, look around your home. Can everything in your living room be described by at least 1 of those 3 words? How about the rest of the rooms?

Most likely, everything in your home cannot fit into those words. And that’s okay – for now. Because you just discovered what the purpose of your home was yesterday. And seeing as most people in the world don’t have $ to plunk down just because they decided the purpose of their home was to be artsy and there’s not a shred of artsy-ness anywhere…just…breathe. And work at it over time.

Filter. Filter everything. Otherwise there’s just a pile of stuff.

 

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31 Day Simplify Series :: Purpose {day 22}

simplify series

What’s the purpose of your home?

If you had to describe the the purpose of your home in 3 adjectives, what words would you use? Here’s a non-exhaustive list:

welcoming
happy
homey
comfortable
elegant
beautiful
lively
creative
elaborate
feminine
masculine
quirky
immaculate
sophisticated
simple
artsy
organized
friendly
modern
minimalist
calm
carefree

There’s a plethora of other adjectives you could choose. Which would you pick?

Why does it matter?

Before you can simplify your home, you need to decide on your home’s purpose. When you figure out something’s purpose, you automatically have boundaries. And boundaries are a really good thing. Both in life and in homes.

So. Today I’m giving you an assignment. Your very first assignment in this entire series. Figure out your home’s purpose in 3 words. Then tomorrow we’ll talk.

This post is part of the 31 day Simplify Series.
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31 Day Simplify Series :: My Fave Recipe Sources {day 21}

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This post is the most exciting to me. Because duh. Food.

Do you love good food? Like tasty, healthy, comforting, spicy, sweet, crunchy, creamy, colorful … I think food is just one of the ways God shows His creativity and love for us. A while ago, I was sick and couldn’t taste anything. I kept pouring cayenne pepper in my soup and thought maybe it had gone bad or something because I couldn’t taste a thing! And then I realized it was just my sinuses that were messed up. I realized over those days how much of a delight food really is. All the different tastes and textures! God could have just made all food taste the same. But He didn’t. And I like to think that’s just one way He lavishes His love on us!

So on to some of my favorite food sources! There are a bajillion places you can find recipes. I have several cookbooks. But I’ll be honest – I rarely use them anymore. When I want a recipe, the first place I look is always online. If I’m looking for a very specific recipe, the very first site I turn to is Allrecipes.com.

allrecipes

My favorite part of All Recipes is the reviews and rating section. That’s the first thing I look at – after the name of the recipe, of course. I also started using the ‘Recipe Box’ feature over the past year and have loved that for family favorite recipes.

When I’m looking for recipe inspiration, there are 2 foodie sites I especially love:

The Pioneer Woman Cooks

shrimp tacos PW

her humor + food photog + insanely awesome kitchen skillz draw me in every time. like the shrimp tacos above? I could inhale one right this second.

I also really like Lauren’s Latest.

wraps laurens latest

Her recipes always look and sound amazing. Southwest Sausage and Quinoa Lettuce Wraps? Sign me up. I’ve made her chocolate frosting for approximately the last 134 birthdays in our house. I mean, at least the last 4. Yum. Also, if you like getting yummy food inspiration in your facebook feed, definitely follow her on facebook. She’s constantly sharing delicious recipes she finds/creates and I love it!

And last, but definitely not least…who could forget our dearly beloved Pinterest?

Follow Christa {BrownSugarToast}’s board Food to Make on Pinterest.

I’m in the process of reorganizing my pinterest boards. I used to just have one big board called “Food to Make.” Now I’m working on creating boards based on whether the food is a breakfast, snack, entree, crockpot meal, etc. It’s a time consuming project, but I know it will make it even easier for me to use! Here are the food boards I have so far. If any of them interest you, please follow along!

Breads + Breakfast
Desserts
Tried & LOVED!
Crockpot Meals
Snackables
Freezer Cooking/Baking
Entrees

Clearly, I don’t mess around with food. It’s serious business, y’all.

Where do you go to for your fave recipes? Share in the comments {gasp! I opened comments!} and we can all gain from each other’s inspiration!

This post is part of the 31 day Simplify Series.
To stay connected, sign up for email updates or find me on facebook!

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 Simplify Series // a 31 day journey via BrownSugarToast.com