If you follow us on Instagram, you would know we recently moved home. We rent and we decided to move closer into the city to make Mike’s commute to work shorter and us closer to our friends and the places we frequent.
I’m going to share much more on living intentionally, minimalism with children and the why and how we got to this space.
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I want to preface this by saying we are certainly a ‘during’ (not an ‘after’) and while we are in the realms of minimalism, we don’t feel there yet!
There’s a spare room in our home with a few boxes full of paperwork for Mike’s business and some things I need to sell or donate. Our garage isn’t organised with all Mike’s work gear and under our home we have our laundry and a multi-purpose room which we intend to make into a messy creative space so it has some paint and clay.
Moving played a huge role in this process of really intentionally working towards what possessions we have and why. We pretty much only brought with us what serves our family’s needs. We rent and we made sure we looked for spaces that suited us and our life.
We decluttered more than once and still have work to do. This was NOT a one time fix and we had help from friends. We started this process 18 months ago!
My best friend Jess and her journey to minimalism really inspired ours!
I hope you enjoy this little tour of our home as it is now!
When you enter the front of our home, you’re greeted by our living area.
In this open space we have the majority of the kids toys and art supplies. To the left next to the art caddy is a low white table. We used to have SO many different kids tables. Now we just have the one and haven’t looked back!
In the woven trunk on the left is full of Lego and the white chest to the bottom right has dress ups and soft toys in it.
We also started over with art materials because we used to own every type of art material.
The whole conditioned belief that abundance is necessary for children is so consuming! I’m glad to be past that. For us this works perfectly and really frees up our time and space for more intentional living.
I’ll go through the kids choices in more detail in my upcoming post on minimalism and children!
(the lock box you can see at the bottom right is one of my kids most used toys which we have had since Cam was a toddler)
Minimising kids toys was just as much (if not more) about me than them. The accumulation of ‘stuff’ was huge – especially because we homeschool and I thought I needed SO much in order to do that.
You can see an old ‘homeschool spaces tour‘ which showcases just how much we owned!
My kids love their choices and their play has transformed to being something far more intentional and resetting after a full day of play is simple (and they are often happy to help!)
Since deschooling we have grown together to realise how little is really needed! As unschoolers we reject the idea that learning only happens through special places or with special books or resources. Learning happens everywhere and having an abundance of space and time to experience the world has opened up far more opportunities to authentically learn and grow.
I must say we did this WITH our kids and they chose all their possessions. I will write more about this but it was so important to us that they were part of the process.
We started with ourselves first which helped them to see how much more manageable things are when you only own what you love and what serves your genuine priorities in life.
To the left of here is our sunroom which we use as a computer room.
We put a couch in this space because it overlooks the living area and backyard so is perfect for me to sit and feed baby and as a central spot to hang out.
You can’t see it in this photo but we have a crystal hanging in the window which Ava loves playing with.
We are yet to figure out a system for paperwork so any tips would be appreciated!
Next to this space is our toilet and then our kitchen.
We put our dining table in our kitchen as it’s large enough and that’s really encouraged family meals.
To stop this space from becoming a catch-all for things, we always try to reset our kitchen every night and make sure everything is in its ‘home’.
We really pared back on all our dishes, baking items and replaced all our plastic Tupperware with glass jars and containers.
We used to have so much mismatched plates and cups and mugs! This essentially just meant when we did tackle dishwashing it was a huge task!
We had some forced minimalism which happened when our kettle broke and we have decided to just use the stove and make us more intentional about the amount of hot drinks we consume. We also put away appliances like our toaster and all the extras we kept on the benches into the cupboard in the top right there.
We now just have our water filter (from here), microwave (considering donating this), my homemade kombucha and thermomix out.
We got rid of so much ‘junk’ and ‘miscellaneous’ items from our drawers and now they are quite empty. We also upgraded some of our items to be higher quality pieces that will last us. Our knives no longer live in a block and are in our drawer.
As highschool sweethearts who married and had children young, most of our belongings have been second hand (almost all our furniture is second hand) or really cheap and part of minimalism for us was investing in our future. It’s not all about getting rid of things!
Our pantry doesn’t always look like this! (This was all organised after moving in but before stocking up) But we try to keep everything in order now and use what we have.
We previously had a family bed but now Cameron sleeps in his own bed most nights (top bunk there) while Lucy and Ava sleep with us in the family bed. This was his own choice. Part of our reason for keeping a 3 bedroom home and not downsizing was in case our kids wanted space of their own.
Cam and Lucy share these drawers and cupboard for all their clothing and shoes. Lucy loves jewellery so has a jewellery box and Cameron loves soccer so has his medals and trophies.
The cupboard is mostly empty aside from shoes and a couple of dresses and coats hanging. The drawers were second hand and are looking worse for wear but they do the job.
Our bathroom has storage which keeps our cleaning products which are minimal, toilet paper and some ‘beauty’ things like bentonite clay and magnesium salts. I also cut the kids’ hair when they want so I have tools for that in there. The cupboards under the sink are empty bar some scales.
This is the cabinet on the wall. I don’t use make up but have some organic mascara (top right). We use eucalyptus for cleaning, the pink bag has my menstrual cup, the second shelf has tweezers and nail clippers in the wooden box and a neti pot. The third shelf is after shave, deodorant, magnesium spray, a natural loofa, nail brush and homemade calendula oil. The bottom shelf has a salt inhaler Mike has been trying, essential oils and activated charcoal.
Outside the bathroom is a linen cupboard which has our towels (two each and two beach towels). We have two sets of fitted sheets and mattress protectors per bed and one doona and pillow each. We need to update for winter though as we want to save on heating. We also keep board games in here and nappies.
This is our bedroom and family bed. Yes, we are so lucky to have so much room! We have a king mattress and queen mattress on the floor.
Our wardrobe on the left has drawers in it with our underwear, swimmers and Ava’s clothing. On the right we share a wardrobe with shoes and most of our clothes and Mike’s work stuff is hanging.
I’ve always been more minimal with my clothing and shoes. It’s just my personality and style! However I also invested in quality clothing and love EVERY item I own now. I have a capsule wardrobe (would anyone want to see? It’s boring to me) and 3 pairs of shoes (I used to have one… I’m very particular about what I wear and like very basic comfortable clothing)
Things we don’t have
We have decided as a family against having a television for now as we all have other screens (tablets and phones) and if we want to watch anything together we use our computer to access things like Netflix.
We don’t have any books for us adults or DVDs – we went digital for all of this. Books were an uncomfortable thing for me. I am a big reader but it was such a freeing thing to recognise that I don’t need shelves of physical books to solidify this fact!
We are intentionally minimal with furniture – we don’t have bedside tables, an entry table, special things cabinet, book cases, etc.
We don’t have much in the way of décor. This is intentional. We prefer it and don’t think belongings are the holders of memories and sentiments – we hold that within ourselves!
We never had a home or home life we truly loved until we embraced minimalism.
We truly love our home. We love how easy and satisfying it is to keep clean and tidy. We love how open and bright it is. We love how it feels and the life we lead because of all these choices.
I hope that covered where we are at – next up minimalism with children and more on living life intentionally! I’d love to hear your questions.
Thank you for reading!