Friday’s Favourites ~ 16Aug2013

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!

Due to problems access my blog this week I have had all sorts of trouble just trying to read and respond to the comments I have managed to get access too. Between that, illness recovery, visitors, dog sitting and a last minute house inspection (for which I really only had to weed the garden) I have had little change to select and attach my favourite comments here this week. Lucky I had no problem accessing Pinterest where I found no end of useful links to share with you below. Enjoy!

Favourite Web Finds. Happy reading!

joyfullygreen ~ The-roadmap-to-fewer-and-greener-vacation-souvenirs

Today’s Mini Mission

Alter ~ Alter an item that isn’t quite right so that you will be more inclined to use it. (Change the fit of a clothing item, cut up large note books to make small jotters, change a piece of furniture, maybe just give something a fresh coat of paint.) I used graffiti paint to freshen up some old coasters recently. I cut a body pillow down to two standard bed pillows. And I pulled the last few pages out of two old note books and cut them down to make note paper for my grocery list etc. 

Eco Tip For The Day

Don’t leave you car idling for unnecessary periods of time such as when you pull over to use your cell phone. 10 seconds of idling uses more fuel than restarting your car.

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

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Continue reading with these posts:

  • Sharing others’ wisdom Today I just want to share with you a couple of post from other bloggers that I enjoyed, and a comment from one of your fellow 365ers. 1. A great article ~ For many people, gathering […]
  • Friday’s Favourites ~ 1Nov2013 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 […]
  • Friday’s Favourites ~ 25Oct2013 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 […]
About Colleen Madsen

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


  1. I especially like the last link about souvenirs. This year I didn’t go on a holiday (just stayed home) and asked my parents, who were going to greece, for a souvenir that I could eat. They got me some honey from the island they visited – I’m going to enjoy the honey at breakfast!

    • Hi Dymphy,
      I just found out that I was linked here so I came to check it out, and I’m so happy to read your nice comment about my souvenir post! Thank you very much, and I hope you’ll drop by Joyfully Green again, and often. You made a great request for a souvenir–when it’s food, you don’t have any clutter left around the house (although maybe a few crumbs…).

    • Good choice Dymphy, especially since honey has very different flavours depending on where it is from. You should try some Australian honey. I know it is very different from the honey we used to get in America. Theirs is mostly clover honey where as in Australia it has favour influences from our native plants, particularly eucalyptus.

      • Colleen – I buy our honey off a friend who is a bee keeper and their specialty is honeys off native trees, it is amazing the completely different flavours.

      • Thanks for the tip, Colleen, when I go to Australia (or somebody else I know), I would definetly try one!

  2. Thank you for sharing, Colleen! I love your tip of the day and the whole concept of altering. I tutor young children and often have more than half a notebook left over when they no longer need my services. I’ve used the paper for scrap – notes to self, assignment notes for students, and I even bring some home to use here for little ideas that creep in while I’m supposed to be working. Until recently, I never ripped out the used pages to offer the notebook to another student. I thought better of that and decided to paste a Name Tag sticker (had those from my days as a presenter at conferences), and now they’re ready for the next student’s name. If they ask me, I always tell them. I love trees! They are so proud to be part of the conservation effort that they grab a marker and scribble their name on the “new” notebook with pride!

    • Hi Tammy,
      Fancy seeing you here! What a small world!

    • Good for you Tammy R. I remember from my school days always getting new notebooks at the beginning of a school year. I don’t even know what happened to the not quite used up ones from the year before. At some point I stopped throwing away the ones my kids bought home at end of year. The problem was I ended up with so much note paper it has taken until now to get through it all. My last child graduated university just last year.

      I love that the kids you tutor are happy to be doing their bit for conservation. Good for them!

  3. These are some good links, Colleen. 1. I like this statement from Living Well Spending Less: “I think once Husband was able to stop worrying about me just buying another one, he stopped clinging to the things we already have but don’t need.” I saw this often when I was working with people where one person was holding onto things because the other spent and tossed.

    2. I thought the visual of the list for “40 Days 40 bags” was really a great eye opener for some.

    3. Better Homes and Gardens “Declutter in 15 Minutes or Less” had some great ideas that can have a good amount of impact.

    4. I really liked Joyfully Green’s post on souvenirs. We weren’t much of a souvenir family when I was growing up so I’m not one today either. BUT I sure wish we had more pictures of some of the vacations we took. My parents took us to all of the 48 contiguous US states and all the provinces of Canada but 3. I have little to show for that even though we saw some beautiful scenery, ate at some interesting restaurants, visited some odd sites, and met some very nice people.

    • So sweet, Deb–thanks for the kind words on my post about souvenirs. Even if you have very little physical evidence to show for your travels through 48 states and Canada (which, by the way, is an amazing gift from your parents–I am envious that you saw so much of the two countries), you can still create something meaningful from that trip all of these years later, in the form of journaling or sketching what you remember. Or just pass on the stories of your travels to your family. So much better than some plastic junk from the souvenir shops!

    • Hi Deb J, I am glad you enjoyed the links.
      As for those lacking vacation shots from when you were little. I can understand how that comes about. It was enough to pay for the vacations never mind having to pay for lots of film processing. Now it is so much easier to chronicle vacations with digital photography. Too easy sometimes. My hubby takes so many photos I can’t be bothered ploughing through them all to relive the moments. I think that is why I lost interest in scrapbooking. I haven’t looked at the photos of our last two overseas trips.

      • Colleen, you are right about the cost but my father took a lot of photos just not the kind I wanted. I like to get some pictures of special things & maybe one or two of those who I am with. I may take 50 photos & only keep 5-10. I just do the highlights.

  4. I always enjoy reading the favorite links. There is frequently good information in the links or else something will jog my memory and I’ll think, “Oh yeah, I need to get that done.” Yesterday I was rewriting my To-Do list and one thing on there was to take a box of books upstairs. I almost transferred it to the new list and then I got off my hind seat and did it. I’m not sure where the procrastination comes in. Maybe that’s just stubbornness. Other times I’m like a ball of fire getting things done. I am so guilty of the souvenir keepsakes. Currently that is all well organized, but I know I have kept way too much.

    • Hi Michelle,
      Let that souvenir guilt work for you on your next vacation–remember it well as you pass right by the souvenir shops! Works for me as I pass the cheesecake section of the supermarket!

      • Hi Joy,

        Thanks for chiming in! The thing with souvenirs (I swear I’m not making excuses!) is that when I see a postcard or a brochure or whathaveyou from a trip long past, I get all excited thinking about how much fun we had. Of course, until I recently organized them, mostly they had been stashed in boxes where I’d never see them but once every couple of years. Bad habit, I know. I don’t necessarily get the same charge when I look through old photo albums. This is why I had thought scrapbooking would be good, but after I did three books for the Kentucky Derby (1-me, 1-mom (who was there), and 1-our hostess), I thought that took more effort than I really want to invest on a regular basis. However, after the third trip to the Petrified Forest in Arizona, I’m good on picture books and postcards! 🙂

    • Hi Michelle, I was hoping the comment about the books was going to end with ~ Then I thought to myself why am I storing these, now they I read I should just let them go. Alas it was just about the procrastination of taking them up stairs. 😉
      Hubby and I are about to embark on our seven week vacation. The only souvenirs I intend to bring home are the memories. I dare say hubby to bring home 3000 digital photos.

      • Colleen – Oh, you do NOT disappoint, my friend! I KNEW you were gonna say that!! And, when we brought the box in, I knew that a task would be again to go through the books we already have if we are going to make space for these. The books came from my step-dad after he died. He had always said that he wanted hubby to have them and hubby does treasure them, so they must be given a place of honor. The problem (and I must find a solution to this) is that they are a hardback Western series from Time Life Books and sadly, the bindings have all come loose. I’ll have to do a search to find someone who can re-bind (?) them.

        You see? You do buzz around in my ear, little bee!

        • Hi Michelle, ha ha, I have got into your head and help you make decisions without even trying now. 😉 I know there must have been a bigger story behind those books because I just know you don’t want to fill up the attic space again.

      • My husband has a set up where when he plays his music (it comes through the surround sound) our photos show up on the TV. We don’t watch much TV, so this has given us another use for it. It is now our photo album. I have never been one for putting all those pictures in albums. Now I get to see these pictures without digging through boxes. As we like to travel, we have our great memories as screen savers and just this past week I was able to get rid of two unused, in the wrapper, photo albums. I have to confess though, I have yet to tackle the boxes (there are several) of old photos, many of which should never be seen, or I don’t even know who the people are that are in them. May be I could start today.

  5. Colleen,
    Thank you so much for linking to my post about souvenirs! I so appreciate reaching readers on the other side of the world, and I’m glad to have found your site today. Really appreciate your kind support!

  6. I’m with you on the souvenirs. When my husband and I travelled around the world house-sitting for 26 months we only bought a sweat shirt each because it was unexpectedly freezing at the Grand Canyon. The rest is covered by photos and memories.

    BTW I have tried all sorts with photos: regular photo albums, scrapbooking (I have done 11 and realize that they are practically never opened) but the best of all is uploading them onto picture files in the computer and then getting them on a slide-show when the computer comes on or off. We did that with the last trip and the constant memories they bring up is wonderful!

    • Janetta, that’s such a smart idea to put the digital photos on the computer screen-saver as a slide show. So many photos just get squirreled away, never to be seen again, but this is a really great way to enjoy them without cluttering up any space! Love it.

      • Janetta, I recently realized that no one looks at the photos in the albums–not even me. But whenever my grandkids are around, they always ask to sit on my lap and look at photos on my computer with me. I love your idea of the screen saver slide show!

    • Hi Janetta, I think the slideshow idea is a better solution. I use a laptop thought so when I am not using it it is either off or the lid is shut to conserve power. Sometimes we have to choose between the lesser evil. Chunky scrapbooks etc or powered devices that slide show our photos.

  7. I enjoyed in Living Well the sentence “decluttering begets more decluttering” – does it ever!

  8. Just had time to read the first link–the ADD one. It mentioned finding a support group to help you declutter, and I think that is what we are to each other,, a really great support group.

  9. Colleen, Thanks for the great links! They were inspiring reading with my morning coffee.

  10. Alter something. I was wondering what to alter when I remembered I had to put the bread in the oven. I slid it over onto the bread tray that had been heating in a 230 degree oven for 30 minutes. And then I picked it up to put it in the oven. Without gloves. So today I altered two fingers and a thumb on each hand 🙂

    • OMG that’s terrible, you must be in agony. I hope you have been treated properly and will heal well.

    • Youch! Gillie that isn’t good. I hope they heal quickly. The idea was to alter something to make it useful again not alter something so you can’t use them for a week or two until the heal. 😉 Some people will do anything to get out of a little housework. 😉

      • We did have a menu change for dinner as I wasn’t much good at cooking. Much better now thank you, though I have some rather impressive blisters.

  11. For souveniers we try to find a squished penny machine. They tend to be 50 (ok, 51) cents and take very little room. They aren’t everywhere, but they tend to be somewhere.

  12. Great links again this week, thank you. I liked how the first article broke down the personality traits that lead so easily to clutter. I recognized myself and several family members and friends in those categories. The whole travel souvenir thing is also interesting. I can remember how my parents used to spend a long time on holidays looking for souvenirs to bring for people at home, it was always rather a chore but somehow they felt obliged to do it. Luckily I didn’t inherit that behavior, and we now avoid gift shops whenever possible, especially the ones that you have to walk through to get out of the place you have been visiting. The only souvenir I look for myself now is yarn, if I can find a skein of locally produced or dyed, and I love to crochet a scarf or something with that when I get home. It is light and easy to pack and gives me a lot of joy.

    • Hi Christine, do you then find those scarves difficult to declutter once created?

      • Hi Colleen, Well, so far I haven’t made too many and I have done a good clean-out of old scarves that I wasn’t wearing, so for now it is under control. I think I am now much more aware and thoughtful about what I bring into the house (thanks in large part to you and this blog) and also it is perhaps more about the making of the object rather than the having of it, so I don’t anticipate them being too hard to declutter when the time comes.

    • Christine, this thought from you resonated with me: “my parents used to spend a long time on holidays looking for souvenirs…” Such a good point–do not waste your vacation shopping when you could be doing so many other things…like simply snoozing on the warm sand in the sun!