Friday’s Favourites ~ 1Feb2013

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!

Sanna fills us in on her reasons for liking the slow and steady approach to decluttering in this comment.

Creative Me gives us her take on how the best of a collection can just get lost in the crowd in this comment.

This comment in response to Cindy’s post this week is also from Creative me. She stumbled upon a way to resist retail temptation.

Rebecca is using much the same method to declutter her photos that I am. Read about it here.

Ideealistin gives  us a rundown in this comment on how she was being inspired by both posts and fellow 365ers last week.

One of a newest 365ers, Mags, introduces herself and lets us know what areas of clutter she is working on in this comment. Welcome to the gang Mags.

Favourite Web Finds. Happy reading!

Cindy sent this link from the NY Times

In case you haven’t been over to Midway Simplicity lately, to see what Tohami is up to, here are a couple of posts worth reading. The first by Kate Carpenter on the true cost of clutter and the latest video project The Midway Decluttering Show featuring Joshua Becker .

This post from Slow Your Home gives you 52 reasons to simplify.

Here is another article, this time from Body & Soul with more information on, and reasons behind clutter.

Today’s Mini Mission

I find that the stronger my desire to reduce my belongings becomes the less attachment I have to sentimental items. Assess what you have in the way of sentimental items and declutter those that no longer hold much attraction. Take into account whether you really need these items to remember the people, places and events.

Eco Tip For The Day

If you enjoy a nice coffee seek out cafés with and eco friendly bent. Two of my favourites have secondhand décor, sugar bowls (not sachets), butter and spreads served in dishes no foil or plastic…

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. Thanks Colleen for sharing a couple of post from my blog. That’s so kind of you.

  2. Some really good comments again. I have said this before, we have a really great community here. I think we are a great bunch of people and we are good for each other in our individual journeys to having less mess.

    Some really great links. I enjoyed reading about Tammy Strobel. I used to keep up with her blog but had to stop trying to keep up with so many. Both of Mohamed’s links were really good. Kate’s article about the cost of clutter is one I am going to share with S. I think it will be a good motivator for her. I always enjoy seeing and hearing Josh Becker. He has a lot of good things to say. I’m also going to share the 52 reasons to simplify with S. Another article I think will be of help for her. And, I am also going to share the Body & Soul article with S. Today was a really good day for things to share with S. I really like that.

  3. I haven’t had time to read all the links and comments yet but Body & Soul caught my attention before I race out the door to get the kids to school. I liked “it would be wrong to think that a tidy-up or buying containers will alone solve cluttering, as if the house itself is somehow the problem”.

    I know the principle that stored clutter is still clutter, but I liked how she was able to express the motive behind the action.

    • That line in the Body & Soul article wasn’t missed in me either Moni. Like I always say, if you get rid of the clutter the organising will take care of itself. Probably time I wrote another article about that.

  4. Couldn’t agree more Colleen with your thoughts on sentimental clutter. I’m reminded of a (true) story my mother told me that has been an inspiration to me ever since. A very elderly woman was about to leave her home of many, many years to go to a small self care apartment in a retirement village and the removalist guy said to her: “You must be very sad to be leaving all your memories behind.” The woman replied ” Oh, no – I’m taking my memories with me!” Although I’m not against keeping sentimental items per se it’s worth remembering that we don’t really need “things” to remind us of the best people and experiences in our lives.

  5. Best quote ever: “I never use a cutting board – we didn’t have all the conveniences – a cutting board and stuff.”

    • Now that is minimalism. It is amazing what we in the Western World consider necessities when convenience would be more appropriate.

    • Cindy – my eye brows hit my hairline when I read that the writer now thought a breadboard wasn’t a necessity. I don’t think I can take minimalism quite that far. But I do remember reading an article of someone who had a full set of chef’s knives and then moved to Bali and discovered that the locals only ever have one knife. Makes sense as I have my preferred knife on the block. Unfortunately it is Adrian’s favourite knife too and its first in first served if we are cooking together.

  6. Loved the links today. Not too busy at the office so could actually spend a few minutes looking and reading them. Really enjoyed “Slow Your Home”. I checked out her archives, too and found lots of good info. Thanks for sharing these. I don’t search out other decluttering websites but am glad that you do.

    • Glad you enjoyed the read Maggie. If however you do stubble upon a good link please send it through via my contact page accessible at the top of my blog. Can always do with help finding good link as I have trouble finding time to read them myself.

  7. Hi Colleen! Thanks so much for including a link to Slow Your Home in your wrap-up. A fabulous way to end the week, I have to say.

    PS I had no idea you lived in Australia! I live in the blue mountains. Amazing how small the world can seem. 🙂

  8. Great links today. As always, you continue to provide us with continual inspiration.

  9. Colleen and Cindy – I have now read the New York Times article and I LOVE it. Have saved it to favourites and will be sending it to friends etc.

    I loved the couple’s story. So often we think the answer to living in the Rat Race is to earn more but its a deceptive trap.

    I enjoyed the explanation of “hedonic adaption” – finally a real name for it! How the buzz of a purchase is pushed toward the emotional norm. So that’s why the buzz of comfort shopping drops out. Its almost a description of addiction isn’t it?

    And I loved how we’re right in there with termites, naked mole rats, ants & bees for social systems. Not so clever as we thought we were.

    I read an article around June/July on economic recovery here in NZ and it said that there had been a return to spending but the decision making period had lengthened to 3 times to what it had been pre-recession. Hopefully that trend continues in the future.

    And good to see data on experiences versus stuff. So true that we only remember the good stuff and dial down any negatives.

    • Hi Moni, a mild addiction is probably exactly what it is for most people.
      I especially loved the naked mole rat connection. Whenever I would take the kids to the Pacific Science Centre in Seattle I would always revisit the naked mole rats just because they were such ugly little things. All the time not realise we had similar traits.

  10. I watched the video with Mr. Becker and I really like his comments re: separating Very Important from Kinda Important. I appreciate all the information you share. Everyone’s suggestions, or just talking about what they themselves are struggling with, have been so helpful!

  11. Love Fridays! Great stuff to read! I think the ‘experience ‘ of this blog is worth it’s weight in gold. Sharing tips on how to get rid of stuff is really strange, but very enjoyable! Feel good factor of this blog is 10/10. Cheers

    • Your just saying that Wendy so I won’t put any more flies in your honey. I hope you know it took a great deal of effort to catch that fly. (just kidding) 😉

      • Oh you so clever young Grasshopper. The only way I catch flies is when they fly into my mouth :0. Which reminds me, some one mentioned the fly lady method of cleaning, who ever it was thank you. 🙂

  12. Hi Colleen! I didn’t even finish reading, but found a quote in Cindy’s link that was wonderful (for a lack of a better word): “BEFORE credit cards and cellphones enabled consumers to have almost anything they wanted at any time, the experience of shopping was richer, says Ms. Liebmann of WSL Strategic Retail. “You saved for it, you anticipated it,” she says. In other words, waiting for something and working hard to get it made it feel more valuable and more stimulating.” I found this to very true. Not that I am a compulsive shopper, but back 5/8 years ago, when I did not have a credit card I antecipated a shopping trip with a lot more enthusiasm. Today, it is too easy to buy. And because it is so easy I always think once, twice, three times, I hear Colleen in my head saying I should access that purchase better ( 😀 😀 😀 )….But if I had not embraced a simpler lifestyle, if I had not decided that I should think before buying and I should access if I really needed that item, I would have a mountain of debt at my door already. And I would be unhappy, because no matter how much I spent I would never have enough.

    • hi Andréia, you are so right. Decluttering isn’t just about getting rid of the ill advised purchases from the past it is very much about learning from those mistakes. Without that long drawn out and thought out anticipation of a purchase, buying stuff just becomes too easy come easy go. Meanwhile the money is hard earned and going just as easy.

  13. Hi Colleen!

    Thanks so much for the mention of my post on Midway Simplicity. Hope things are going well in Australia – and I love your new picture!


  14. Colleen, we can use you and Flylady. Y’all have excellant advice. I have a question for the community. We downsized and it is a struggle to let go and let go of even more. My question is why do people think you must go shopping just because you have a new home? I just got rid of tons of stuff why do I want to buy more? My friend said it’s a new house you need to buy new things. Our sofa and chairs are not even a year old. Why? I decided just for the fun of it to use a very old but very good shower curtain in the guest bathroom. It is orange, white, yellow and green with daisies. I really love it. I have a picture to go with the shower curtain. My friends think I am nuts. Why is it not ok for me to use? I thought it would be fun to go retro. I did buy new bath mats for the bathroom. I am daily gettting rid of things to make my new house less cluttered. I had huge closets in my new home. I have learned something just because you have the room doesn’t mean you need to keep so much. Even if the closets are clean and not cluttered!

    • Hi Wanda, I know you can use both Fly Lady and me and several others for that matter. I was just messing with Wendy because she is a friend of mine. 😆

      When you said “I just got rid of tons of stuff why do I want to buy more? ” did you mean …why would I want to buy more. My response is this ~ Formulate a response for people who suggest such insanity explaining how liberating it is to no longer want for things. That you have left the consumer rat race behind and are loving it. I find that when I preface my response, to such suggestions like this by well meaning people, with the exclamation of “GOD NO!”, they soon get the message that I think the idea is ludicrous and that they shouldn’t even suggest such a thing. They generally give up pretty quickly on this tact.

      It is perfectly OK for you to use that old shower curtain and it is your friends who are nuts not you. If only they knew how manipulated they are by trends, clever advertising and big business who just want their money, they may think twice about allowing themselves to be someone else’s pawn.

  15. Thank you, Colleen for your comments. You are right why would I want to buy more. I really want to have a house that is easy to clean and not so much clutter. There are some things I will keep however, I refuse to add to any collection. Next, on my list is the dreaded sewing room. I have been busy trying use up some of the material I bought. I am a quilter so I will always have material so the goal is not to add to the material. It is so nice not to be caught up in “things.”

  16. Well, ladies and gents, just have to share my January – no spend – month results. I spent $1.50 on sodas at the office (2 different days) and $32.76 to take my son out for a birthday lunch one Saturday. Of course, I did do grocery shopping and paid for medicine refills but nothing extraneous. Despite being bombarded with catalogs and emails of all the January sales and being tempted, I did not buy anything. I am so proud of myself and what is most important, I didn’t miss shopping at all. Once I stopped going to the mall, I didn’t miss it. So, I am extending my no buying into February. As I look around my house, I realize that I have so much more than I need. My husband even mentioned this weekend that we have more sheets than we need. So, I plan to declutter some of them soon.
    Wanda, one of the things that I love to buy is fabric for quilting however, doing a small inventory this month shows me that I may NEVER use up everything I have so whenever I want to buy, I’ll just go look in my stash and remember how beautiful that fabric is. Some of it, I even forgot I purchased, so it is like shopping all over again. What also made me think of this is because my sister went to a quilt show last weekend and said she bought a few things – and spent about $250. Now she is more of a quilter than I am so I didn’t think much about that cost but when she started reading me the amounts on each receipt, she realized she had spent well over $500. I was cringing. So, I rededicated myself to another “no spending month” and thank my lucky stars I was not with her – she is a BAD INFLUENCE on me! 🙂 And when you are at one of those events, you just get caught up in the fever of buying and it is too easy to shop. So, wish me luck. I know I can do it and that means more money to put in my savings account.

    • Maggie, what a great job in January and look how much you are learning. I know you will do as well in February. Your sister sounds like a friend of mine. She literally has a room full of fabric for quilting. When I go in and see all of that fabric all neatly folded and shelved I wonder how she thinks she will ever use it all. She is 60 and , yes, she quilts almost every day but still there is just so much there. The room is so full of fabric that she has shelving set up the length of their hallway where she keeps all her other supplies. I have been with her when she will buy fabric even though she has all of that stored away. I am thinking that she is about her fabric a lot like we are about other things where we don’t use them because then we won’t be able to get them again.

    • Good for you Maggie. I am so glad you not only survived January without buy stuff but didn’t even miss it. Woo Hoo!!! I am also infinitely pleased you have pledged to not spend in February as well. I wish I could say the same thing because I am going to be $900 poorer when I get a crown fitted to my tooth at the end of the month. As result of not regular enough dental care when I was a child unfortunately resulting in a missing tooth blah blah blah.

      I am glad you didn’t go to that quilt show I know how tempting those things can be. I used to love scrapbooking expos when I lived in the US. I was usually pretty good, set myself a limit and stuck to it. The fact is I probably still have some of the papers in things in my craft room now, 8 years later.

  17. Deb J., You are exactly right. That is what she says, “I may never find this fabric again.” Your friend’s room sounds just like my sister’s. I have a lot of fabric, too, but not nearly as much as she does. And now that I’m not buying anymore, I will try to make things with what I have and be glad of that. I’m trying to rearrange it so I can see more of it.

    • Maggie, I tried to count the amount of pieces of fabric she had and gave up at the 500+ pieces just on the shelves on one wall!! And it wasn’t the largest wall of shelves in the room.

  18. My sister has a small room but the closet is lined with “FULL” shelves and there are shelves and drawers wall to wall. She did make room for a cutting table but it is held up by shelves and she has a wonderful sewing table with drawers and lots of room to cut but there is fabric EVERYWHERE. I think I would get claustrophobia in there. But she makes fabulous quilts and gives most of them away. She made me one for my 66th birthday with a pattern call the Sisters Block and put a picture of the four siblings on the back along with a special block that she called a brother’s block so he would be represented. She also made me a runner for the foot of my bed for Halloween. Both are georgeous. So, she uses her fabric but she really has a lot. I, on the other hand, have many projects begun but not finished. I hope to work on some of them this winter. I don’t have the obsessive quilting fever that she has but I do like looking at my fabric and planning projects. Just need to finish a few. Deb J – Do you think we are talking about the same person??? My sister and your friend? 🙂

    • Maggie, if you sister lives in Glendale Arizona then it might be my friend. Grin! they do sound a lot alike. makes you wonder that’s for sure. I just feel claustrophobic when I am there.

  19. Colleen, I didn’t mention that I spent $3K on a root canal and replacement of a permanent bridge but I didn’t consider that “my spending money” since it was medical and mandatory. Perhaps I should have counted that. It sure took it’s toll from my savings account even though I have dental insurance. I used up my dental allowance for 2013 so will have to pay out of pocket for dental cleanings for rest of 2013. Oh well, that won’t affect February spending 🙂 since my next visit won’t be until May.

  20. Deb J, My sister lives in Tucson, AZ. Must be that dry weather that keeps them shopping. Staying cool at the mall or the quilt shops. Maybe we should introduce them to one another.

  21. What a hoot. Wouldn’t be surprised if they have met. My friend has gone to Tuscon several times for Quilt shows.


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