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 did.

Favourite Comments. Enjoy!

Here is a lovely story from Tam who made a lot of people happy with her donation of craft supplies. 

Jane  had an opinion on gifts inspired by Deb’s post on Thursday

Juhli also had something to say on the subject of gift giving/receiving.

Andréia gives the facts on how few gadgets one needs in the kitchen.

Also received and email from one of the lovely ladies on was on tour with in Ireland. Here is what she said…

Have been thinking a lot about you lately and wanted to say “thank-you”.  I checked out your 365 Less Things Blog and you reminded me of things I used to do decades ago when the kids were little. I’ve been following your de-clutter suggestions and WOW do I feel better!!!  I’ve even gotten my husband* into the act.  If we’re sitting watching a football game or whatever, we’re going through old files, the piles, etc. and cleaning out.  Mucho thanks.  (*Husbands name removed for privacy reasons)

Favourite Web Finds. Happy reading!

Here is an article from Courtney Carver to think about as we approach the silly season

I am sure you will all be able to relate this next article from Mike Burns to your decluttering efforts.

Here is a link to a survey on disorganisation. It is for US or Canadian citizens, take it if you like.

Oh good gracious me, yet another ridiculous unitasker from

Here is a great article form if you feel that you are a bit organising deficient in the paper filing department. 

And here is an article I enjoyed from The Minimalists. I agree with his philosophy but when I can find exactly what I need I do a little more investigating to see if I can get it at a discount.

Today’s Mini Mission

Declutter any stationery items that are overstocked in your home. Especially if they were purchased for their novelty factor. Cute pens, pencils, erasers, notebooks, thumb tacks, paperclips etc. ~ You may think this is an odd thing to suggest but you might be surprised at how often inexpensive items such as these are purchased when they aren’t needed.

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 ~ 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 […]
  • Friday’s Favourites ~ 18Oct2013 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. Great links today, Colleen! It is true that a lot of people go completely bonkers at Christmastime. This will be my first Christmas after finding your blog and my frame of mind has radically changed. As you know, I decluttered a ton of Christmas decorations. I do still have a bunch. During my earlier declutter, some things I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of. I’ll take a hard look again. There is no reason for me to have all these things. We don’t even have kids and rarely entertain. But here’s one thing, my mom is always saying, “There is no point in decorating for the holidays if no one is going to come visit.” I think that is a little sad. Obviously the glam and sparkles are NOT what makes the holiday, but it can be cheerful, yes?

    I may have mentioned sometime over the past year that at one time, I lived in a 24 foot camp trailer with my then boyfriend, a large dog and my cat. The one Christmas we spent in the camper, I bought a table-top fake tree and some miniature ornaments and frankly, it was super cute and very cheerful. Being so limited in space made me have to put serious thought into what I could do. It was sort of a blessing to be so restricted.

    I have been off-my-game in the decluttering journey. Scatter-brained doesn’t even begin to describe my mind right now. LOL Monday, Nov. 11, I have off for Veteran’s Day, but my husband does not. I’ll put out my flag to demonstrate my appreciation and get my hind-end in gear again. 🙂

    ps: Colleen, I’m behind on reading the blog so maybe you have already said. Are the fires out? Is everything ok with your husband and your daughter? Take care!

    • I really like my little table-top tree. Easy to store, fits in our living room, isn’t a huge production to set up and put away each year. I like marking the season in a festive way, but not let it take over.

    • Michelle, that reminds me I need to publish your Christmas declutter post from last year. Thanks of the heads up. Sorry to hear you have been off your game lately, I guess you have had other things on your mind. I have had a bit of a spell that myself since returning from vacation as there is so much happening here lately. No so much physically but decision making, apartment buying, family stuff… How is your mom coming along with her pending move to Colorado? I dare say that has been occupying your mind.

      I liked the sound of your camper Christmas tree. The simple things in life are often the best.

      • Hello Colleen – I’m hoping that all works out well for you with the apartment buying. 🙂

        Mom is having ups and downs on this. Night before last, she was way excited. Last night, down in the dumps. I understand, though. Going from nearly always lovely weather in AZ to winters in Colorado, cost of living is higher here, homes are definitely more expensive than in AZ. I should say, a comparable home for her is quite a chunk more. But I am encouraged after doing a little internet wandering and mailed her some good stuff today. Also, she is a little down about leaving my step-dad. (He is interred at the VA Cemetery down there.) She likes to go visit him every now and then. It’s tough. But it would be easier on my mind if she were here and I really believe we’re going to find her something terrific! 🙂

        Even though I haven’t been doing any hard-core decluttering, I do my daily organizing tasks – you know – putting things back where they belong, cleaning out the junk drawer every couple of weeks, sucking up cobwebs with the vacuum. LOL

        • Hi Michelle, I know how your mother feels, I have been up and down myself with the apartment buying. It is a big decision and because I get very nervous about spending large sums of cash. I understand that it must be hard for your to leave your step-dad. You need to help her realise that he is with her in spirit and that is what matters. I am sure once she is close to those who love her she will be just fine. Both of you must be having a rough time right now. My thoughts are with you.

          I am glad you are find time and enough enthusiasm to keep up with the daily routine even if the decluttering has gone by the wayside a little. I have been there before myself and am glad to say that eventually one always comes out of the funk.

          My problem now is that my home is so organised I feel guilty about having little of anything productive to do. No excuse not to work on that ebook is really what I am saying. 😉

  2. Actually, December is a crime for decluttering for me personally. First, there is the nameday of St. Nicholas of Myra on December 5th, then my birthday on the tenth, and finally Christmas.

    I am luckier this year, since my mother has agreed to buy fewer, yet more expensive items. For instance, I have asked a new case for my bow, because my old one is falling apart. For my birthday, I am asking for some equipment for weaving which I need since I want to progress to more difficult wefts. I have been weaving since last April and I’m hooked!

    For the rest, it is always a surprise what little gifts my parents give me – usually they buy something they think I must like (when often I don’t). They also have the nasty habit of getting everyone in the family the same gadget, because they are on sale and they think it will come in handy. Most of those gifts are usually quite quickly decluttered, which is actually a bit of a waste, I think.

    • Hi Dymphy, my birthday is long after Christmas either but I have my family well trained now. I am glad you have been able to give your mother ideas for things that you need. This holiday season may be a little less cluttered for you.

  3. 🙂 at Dymphy! My in-laws get each son and wife the same gift, just in different colors. It makes me cringe on their behalf because I think their hearts are in the right place, but not too many of the recipients are appreciative of the gifts, which are frequently not something that a person would buy for themselves or could even use. My husband and I would like to be done with the gift exchange altogether, because we have often gotten some ungracious remarks, but my in-law insist on the gift-giving. Ugh!!

    • Hi Michelle, that really does sound like buying gifts just for the sake of it while putting as little effort and thought into it as possible.

    • Michelle – that is a bit bizarre that all the sons and daughter-in-laws the same gift. Oh well, they probably have their reasons but its almost shades of gift-buying for young children to ensure no favouritism. My kids are all teens still living at home so I don’t have that situation. Maybe just for fun you should coordinate with your sister-in-laws so that you all give the parents the same gift but in different colours!

  4. Colleen, Christmas is a time when I like to concentrate on why we even have this holiday. As you know, we do little gift giving because most of our family and friends agree with us that we are basically getting what we need during the year and we have little we want. We do decorate but minimally compared to what we used to do. What we do use is more in keeping again with the reason for the season.

    Great links and comments. I thought the “Fight Holiday Spending” article was good. One I can see passing along. I really liked the article on Choosing. I plan to pass that along too. I took the survery just for the fun of it. It would be interesting to see what the results are. “Trongs & a Dip Cup?! You have to be kidding me? I thought the article on creating a personalized filing system was very good. I passed it on to S. I’m not sure I agree with the Minimalists article. I get his point but I don’t think you have to pay full price in order to be thoughtful and careful with purchases. I am like this even with sale priced items.

  5. Hi Deb J, I am with you on this. The whole religion holiday thing seems to have gone out the window and replaced with a useless gift fest. That of course isn’t what you said but that is what came to mind when I read your comment.

    I liked the article on choosing the too. And yes the Trongs and dip cup boggle the mind. I liked what he was saying in The Minimalist article but as you saw I made a point of clarifying that I would attempt to get a better price if possible.

    • Colleen, yes as a Christian it very much bothers me that not only does our Thanksgiving get shunted aside for the commercial side of Christmas so does Christmas itself.

  6. Hi Colleen! I am taking a lighter approach to Christmas this year. One gift per family member, at a budget, and as I have 6 extended family members, plus my husband, me and 2 children, that would amount to 10 gifts altogether. If I spend 40 dollars on each gift (and that is what I intend to spend come hell or high water 😀 ), I will spend 400 dollars on gift giving at Christmas. Wow! That sounds quite expensive. The Secret Santa idea was discarded by family members. Pity. Maybe I will try again next year. As for the Unclutterer link I quite liked it. It is an area in my house in which I have frequent problems.
    I will try some of the suggestions to see if I can improve my filing system.

    • Hi Andréia, any reduction is a good reduction. You make sure you stick to your $40. My kids instigated Secret Santa this year so Steve and I will be spending $50 each this Christmas. We aren’t buying each other a gift so it is a very inexpensive gift giving affair at our house this year. It felt a little awkward to begin with but then I discussed it with my children (as I said, it was their idea to begin with) and they are perfectly OK with it. I will however buy and make so extra nice treats for Christmas day. Perhaps make them all a batch of caramel and chocolate fudge to take home. Too bad your family wouldn’t go for the Secret Santa idea. It feels so much more relaxing.

  7. I enjoyed the links, I enjoyed Courtney Carver ‘before you make that decision of what to spend’ – we know this deep down but its quite something to see it spelt out like that. Mike Burns Choosing One Thing post there were some interesting thoughts to ponder.
    I do understand where The Minimalist is coming from – I still love a bargain but only if the item being bought still ticks all the boxes. I have found, however, that the further down the minimalist path I go, the less likely I am to find the perfect item in a bargain bin or to be easily found in fact. But on the other hand, its very rare these days to buy something that I end up regretting, which is a form of decluttering-in-advance.