Friday’s Favourites ~ 17May2013

On Fridays at 365 Less Things I share with you my favourite comments from my wonderful readers and my favourite web finds of the week. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I did.

Favourite Comments. Enjoy!

In this comment Wendy B demonstrates that all kinds of circumstances initiate decluttering. Well done Ian and Wendy.

Wise words form Ideealistin in regards to buying to resell. I have encountered more than one person in my life who bought to resell then stopped reselling. There homes ended up full of clutter. The buying became like any other addiction.

Yesterday we had four previously silent readers come forward to make their first comments. I felt inclined to share them with you. Enjoy! I appreciate every reader contribution to the blog and encourage you all to join the conversation. So welcome to Katy, Nanette, Leah and Purplej. I hope I haven’t missed anyone.

In this comment Marianne gives her advice on how to enjoy books and magazines without the clutter.

Favourite Web Finds. Happy reading!

This link for Becoming Minimalist gives good advice on why fewer toys are better for your kids.

I enjoyed this link also from Becoming Minimalist. It matches so well with the theme of my mini missions this week.

Andréia sent me this link to an article about decluttering books After reading it I was a bit reluctant to share it here as the writer still had a vast collection. As it turned out she was a book reviewer. However I found the first few paragraphs too interesting to keep them to myself. And here is another one about making a household inventory.

Here is another great article about including kids in the chores and decluttering from The Other Side Of Complexity.

Today’s Mini Mission

Having too many items of clothing to choose from can lead to baskets of unwashed and/or unfolded washing laying around. This can also cause wasted time making choices on what to wear. Declutter some excess clothing. Think about whether the number of clothing items you own represents the amount you really need or how often you can be bothered washing and ironing them. I DO NOT mean for you to consider washing small loads more frequently (that would be bad for the environment). What I am saying is do you still have several weeks worth of this seasons clothes in your wardrobe at the time you are doing a full load of laundry. If that is the case perhaps you are overstocked.

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow

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Continue reading with these posts:

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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Gads! I need to go through my clothing again. I look at shirts that are faded, maybe a small tear, AGES old. I sometimes wonder about my lack of interest in clothing. lol I think I complained weeks ago about my clothes and yet I have taken no action. I just detest clothes shopping! I’m a secretary, but sometimes a uniform sounds like a good idea! 😉

    • Hi Michelle,
      I don’t work but still have a sort of uniform because like you I do not like clothes shopping. In winter I wear jeans and a polo or tank top and jumper (winter is fairly mild where I live). In summer I have short and tank top or dresses. I don’t accesories so no extra time there either. I tend to find a top I like and buy 2-3 in different colours and just keep rotating them.

      I love the link about leaving the world a better place I might read it to my kids over dinner tonight.

      • Hi Debra F – I suppose I could solve this problem myself if I would just take a few hours, go through the closet, determine my “uniform” pieces, go shop for those that are missing or old/worn out. I always seem to not have the time. That sounds like I am making excuses, doesn’t it? 😉 I have been known to buy the same thing in different colors, too.

      • Debra F, I am like you. I have a sort of uniform. I wear capri pants and a t-shirt during the winter and shorts and t-shirt the rest of the time. For church I have a pair of jeans and several blouses. For going out during the week I have the capri’s and t-shirt. I have a couple of pair of shoes. I don’t wear jewelry because I am allergic to it. I keep my hair short and easy to take care of. I don’t wear any makeup except some lip gloss on Sunday. I’m allergic to makeup but wouldn’t wear it anyway. My routine is easy and quick.

      • Debra F, I think we wear the same uniform. 😆

    • Michelle ~ Uniforms are a great idea. When I first started work as a teenager a million years ago I asked the boss if I could instigate a uniform for myself. I had worn school uniforms all my life and it made deciding what to wear everyday easy. Having to wear civilian clothes everyday took the fun out of wearing them in your down time. Not only that your good clothes then wore out quicker as one had to present themselves well at work. My boss was happy to allow me to choose a uniform for myself and all was happy.

  2. Some good links today Colleen. I liked both of them at Becoming Minimalist. I totally agree about the toys issue. We didn’t have a bunch of toys growing up and because of that we stayed outdoors and played more. We also were more creative. I agree that it is better to leave a room in better shape when we leave it and someone’s life better when we leave their presence for that time. everyone can use encouragement and kindness. I really, really like the inventory idea. I have been trying to do one but getting frustrated. I will have to see if I can find an inventory sheet at my insurance’s website. The last link about kids and being clutter free was good. I think that if you can train them early you will have them in better shape than if you wait but no one is a lost cause. Everyone can learn.

    • I think there is a very fine art to training kids early too. I thought I was doing that with mine but in some ways they rebelled against it never the less. It must have been my approach.

  3. Andreia’s link seems to take me to an article on doing a contents inventory, not sure if it is the right one but I found it interesting anyway as I plan to update our inventory in June. I also like the articles from Becoming Minimalist.

    This week has been quite a week, some renovations at work which were scheduled for two months time, were brought forward to ….. today as the builders had a window of opportunity. This meant that the guys had to clear the mezz floor – I haven’t been up there in years and was gob smacked at what came down. This generated a big throw out which everyone got stuck into and enjoyed.

    The next part of the plan is that I will shift into the new entrance/reception area, so I took the opportunity to clear some stuff from office too. I have still to tackle the upstairs storage room but I’ve just got to get thru this renovation before I create more chaos but in the mean time I’m dealing with one item a day until I can unleash a Hurricane session. This weekend my daughter Dayna has the two biggest events of the year landing on the one weekend – her school ball (prom) on Saturday and on Sunday we have to travel 3 hours for her to sit her Advanced 1 ballet exam. So next week I can do a bit more work on our ceiling storage – as the hall cupboard has been mostly cleared, there is stuff up in the ceiling which can relocate to the hall and be more easily accessed…..and also there is stuff in the ceiling which will be gotten rid of. So much going on!

    • Hi Moni! It is the wrong link!!! The link that I think she meant to publish was this one:——-Pain-Free-Ways-to-Declutter-Your-Library
      Oh wow, a remodeling brought forward, before you or the house were ready…that is a though one! I hope everything works fine!
      Good luck with your decluttering!

      • Hi Andreia – it is at my workplace that the renovation is happening – I don’t think I would be quite so calm if a team of builders walked into my home and started knocking walls out etc. My work has two buildings side by side and a interconnection door between the two. I had no idea there was so much stuff up on the mezzanine floor, actually I don’t think any body did. So Wednesday was a flurry of freecycle, scrap metal recyclers and dumpster bins. Wow, it felt good seeing the fast progress and being part of a team effort to get things sorted.

        The building I work in has the upstairs storage room that everyone just dumps stuff in, it will be my next big challenge.

    • Hi Moni, you are so right and thank you for pointing it out to me that I had put in the wrong link. I have fixed the issue, adding the correct link but also keeping the inventory one. I need to be more careful when proof reading the blog, but there is nothing new about that. 😉

      I almost forgot to say, WOW you have and are going to be busy for a while. Good luck to Danyna too.

      • Colleen – not a biggie – as I said, it was a good one for me as I am going thru all my insurances at the moment and inventory for contents insurance is on the to-do list so always glad of some tips.

  4. Thanks again for this great blog…even if I don’t follow the mini-missions I am inspired to try and find one thing each day to get out of my house…even if it’s a small thing I’m making progress. Really takes the stress out of decluttering when I know, for example, I don’t have to get rid of all my books today, but I can find one I don’t really want.
    Becoming Minimalist is my other favorite, he is wonderful. I feel so much more peaceful with less stuff/clutter around me, and it’s easier to clean the house!
    I can’t believe how many boxes I have hauled to Goodwill in the last 9 months, and still found enough stuff to participate in the neighborhood garage sale two weeks ago! My husband has even started to make some small steps (the “I might need that someday” guy) and our garage is looking better.
    Also I’ve been finishing craft projects that have been in progress for years. Today I made a garden stone out of the pretty broken plate I’ve been saving for 2 years, it really didn’t take very long.
    It’s so easy to procrastinate, but if a task is only going to take a few minutes…do it now!

    • Hi Deanna, I am so glad that you are going slow but strong. Good for you. And it seems like your new habits are starting to rub off on your husband, well done.

      You are so right procrastination only prolongs the agony of things you don’t really want to do. Funny how we all seem to have certain things we procrastinate about even though we know we are doing it over and over again.

  5. I really loved the first link “Leaving the World a Little Better”. I have always thought and try it in my everyday life that if you can’t be helpful or nice to someone in your everyday life, don’t say anything. I especially liked this part:
    “Every relationship is an opportunity to leave others better than we found them. Every conversation at the market, library, or street corner is an opportunity to brighten somebody’s day. Every meeting or assigned project at work is an opportunity to move progress forward. Even every posting on Facebook or social media carries the same potential.”
    Lots has been said here about cluttering your mind. I told someone once that when you are in the street and someone smiles at you, you are quick to forget it, but if someones offends you, it takes days to let go. So this post touched me, made me want to try harder to spread nice feelings around and just forget about bad feelings/moments. I read a post today in my FB where the author said: “If you don’t agree with what your friend said, don’t say anything. If it bothers you very strongly, act on it outside FB. Make a donation to a charity that supports the cause, fund a movement with people to fight that problem, do something. But don’t fight in a social network like FB, because it is the only sure thing to give you grief and achieve nothing.”
    About the toys link: both were great! I think that less toys really are conductive with creativity, as I have witnessed my son enjoy himself drawing endless when he was not with his toys…and ignore boxes of toys to draw and invent stories when he is home. 😀 I am lot more lenient and less ruthless when decluttering toys than I am when decluttering my stuff. But I have stopped toys coming in. Its clothes and shoes for birthday, and books or a puzzle, if one must give something different. Still tooooo maaaanyyyy toys to my liking, but I am working on it.
    The books link, well, I think it is ok, she gets to keep all the books! 😀 😀 😀 Just kidding! I liked it to evaluate books to keep, and, also, thinking before buying. Recently I refused a book my husband wanted to buy me. It was a really interesting book, but as I have no time to read now, it would just sit in the shelf abandoned, so no, that is not what a book is for.
    Great links as usual!

    • Great points in your comment Andréia. I also like leaving the world a little better. Sometimes that can be a simple as holding a door open for a stranger.

      I am glad you are providing less toys and more stimulating or useful items to your children as gifts. It is so easy to just keep giving what we think is fun and not realising we are actually taking away from their creativity and perhaps at the same time creating avid consumers. Now is the time to encourage restraint.

      Sorry I got the book link wrong but they were both good links and I have fixed the error now.

  6. Good stuff this week. It is amazing that when I take the time to be present and listen to others, that I find opportunities to declutter. This has been how my week has gone. A coworker needed some clothes, so I was able to get rid of one large bag. Even if they do not all work for her, they have left my house and she can share them with others. I also know of a friend who has a daughter that I will be able to share the remainder of my barbie doll collection with. I only have about 15 left, (I started with a few hundred) and I will cull down the rest to only my absolute favorites. I also have a bag ready to take the donation center this weekend. It surprises me that just when I think that I may be just about where I want to be (at least at this point in my life) with decluttering, I look again and there is still more that can make the cut.

    • Hi Jen, it is a good thing that you keep finding more and more to declutter. That means you are evolving as you go. Being less attached to material possessions is a good thing and when done deliberately, over a long period, new behaviours are cemented into place. Well done you!

  7. Thanks for noting my comment, Colleen. On cleanup day we picked up a large dog crate that someone was throwing away. It will have to live outside under the deck but it will save us from having to collect large cardboard boxes for miscellaneous large critters. Any beast that is too big for THAT box, is too big for me!

    I was given a small Thank-you gift today and my first thought was “Oh no” but the giver is someone after my own heart. In the reused (and reusable) gift bag was a mint plant for my garden and a bag of trail mix for our upcoming road trip. A truly clutter-free gift and much appreciated.

    • Hi Wendy B, that pet crate was an unexpected gift from the Gods and I dare say it will be well utilised. Karma for your good deeds I would say.

      My advice on the mint plant ~ don’t put it in your garden. They just take over like a noxious weed and there is no getting rid of them. Best to plant it in a pot it can’t escape from. No one gave me this advice when I acquired my first one. I am continuously having to tame it.

      • Actually, Colleen, conventional wisdom doesn’t work in this little corner of the world. This person gave me a mint plant because I was complaining that our seemingly-endless winter had killed both of my supposedly-unkillable mint plants. Besides, I have the choice of planting it in my fenced garden…or…having deer with minty-fresh breath! So, one mint plant in a large pot and the other two in the garden. Hedging my bets, so to speak.

  8. Hi Wendy B, even as I was writing that I thought your circumstances may have been quite different, due to the vast contrast in our weather conditions. Deer with minty fresh breath does sound good. I wonder if that would make the difference in the mating rituals. Perhaps the lady deer will like fresh over butch. 😆

    • And it’s a good thing we don’t like venison, otherwise it would come pre-seasoned! Combination of mint and the hot peppers I grind and spread on my succulents to (unsucessfully) keep the deer from eating them as well.

  9. Loved the one on leaving places a little better – and very suited to one of your posts this week!

    I also loved the tips on an inventory – I’m doing a series of posts on Thursdays inventoring my house. Starting small and increasing (I have done the whole house, but it’s just one big spreadsheet – it’s catching up with photos, both for myself and the blog). It really helps me ‘defend’ what I have, and why I have so many – like wow, I was shocked my clothing count was (relatively speaking) so high!

  10. Hi all,
    Loved reading all the links and the posts. Clothing still struck a chord, uniforms are great. I wish my work gave us a uniform as such rather than a clothing allowance. I feel that started my abundance problem with clothes.

    Since doing Project 333, I have greatly reduced the amount of clothes I had and it also helped me wear the clothes I have. Every now and then I WOW out by wearing a maxi dress but usually I’m in dance gear, or jeans (I have coloured jeans so it’s not just boring denim) and a t-shirt. Just lately I have been wearing denim jeans with a white top of some sort. If anyone notices I say I am supporting ‘Ovarian Cancer’ with the white shirt. The young mum across the way from me, fundraises for all cancers, so it’s been great to spread the word with help from her. I’ll wear the colours as the fund-time approaches, for me it has two plusses, 1 for uniformity and 1 for fundraising awareness. I have Breast, Ovarian and Melanoma covered because our dance colours are Pink White and Black!!

    I know it can get boring having a ‘uniform’, but you can have a limited wardrobe and still look turned out. I have found that with Project 333 because you have a certain amount you get very good at switching bits about. I love it. Now just need to get other junk sorted out, I’m getting there honest!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂