Monday, December 16, 2013

Let's Be Realistic

Hello out there....

I am very new to blogging and somewhat new to minimalism. I've read a lot of blogs on minimalism, and some of them are really inspiring. But some of them are just plain ridiculous, at least when compared to my idea of minimalism. 

This blog is about being a realistic minimalist. Maybe I should have called it that, but I'm still on the down low, so until I'm ready to come out of the closet, Undercover it must be. Plus, I already set up the whole blog under this name and I don't feel like starting over.

My goal is to add realism to minimalism, which is something that I've had a difficult time finding among the current crop of minimalists in the blogosphere (no offense Guy Who Owns 100 Things or Less). In attempt to be as realistic as possible, here are a few things you should know about me:

1. I have no intention of quitting my full-time job to "travel the world with nothing but a backpack." I like my job most days, and I need the money. Yes, I NEED the money.

2. I LOVE television and all of the delightfulness it brings to my life, whether it's reality TV trash or the sophistication of PBS. Therefore, I'm NOT canceling cable and giving away my TV.

3. I'm not becoming a minimalist so I can "live my passion," whatever that means. I'm an average person, with average skills and abilities, and at this point, I don't even know what my passion IS, much less if I would be able to live it.

4. I will be 50 years old in a few months, but this is not some milestone that I feel the need to achieve. My age and the timing of this blog are pure coincidence.

5. I have a husband who has been a police officer for almost 24 years and works like a dog. He used to love his work, but 20+ years of shift work and dealing with the dregs of society are taking its toll.

6. But he can't retire yet because we have two sons, ages 17 and 14. The 17-year-old will be going to college next September (we hope), and in order to keep him from going into unreasonable debt, my husband and I expect to be working for the forseeable future.

7. However, we are not in debt. In fact, we have been extremely smart with money, and we have savings to help pay for college tuition. But when we started saving 16 years ago, we didn't expect that when the time came, one year at a state school would cost about $20,000/year.

8. We live in a modest house and always have. It's a three-bedroom twin in a working-class, suburban neighborhood in eastern Pennsylvania. We never felt the need to move into a bigger home because we preferred taking good vacations and driving nice cars instead. And by nice cars, I don't mean a BMW or a Mercedes. I mean a new Subaru with all of the latest gadgets. I love me a back-up camera and satellite radio.  

These are the things that I think are immediately relevant to this blog, but I'm sure I'll divulge more as time goes on. I want to talk about how minimalism has affected my life so far, and what I eventually hope to gain. I plan to post pictures of areas in my house as I'm clearing them out, and I might even talk about...gasp...personal finance!

So I hope you'll come back and visit regularly. I'd love to know how you're doing in your quest to live a more minimal lifestyle. Hmmm, "more minimal." Does that even make sense?

Off to take pictures of my first public decluttering project. See you soon!

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