There are so many ways to start creating a simpler life! From finances, to house cleaning, to simply how you perceive your surroundings, simplifying your life can be, well..., simple! Here are my five favorite ways to keep my life simpler every day! You might think some of them are sort of 'cheating' but I think they are genius because to me they just make sense. In fact, they make so much sense that you may already be doing some, if not all, of them already!
ONE: Car Keys - Nothing makes me crazier than misplacing the car keys. Whether I am home, at the store, or even at work, misplacing, or trying to locate the car keys is a annoying! Here's how I simplified this problem: a hook. What? Yup, a hook. Not just any hook, mind you. My hook is a brass round eye quick snap that is actually used for rope or chain and it can be found in just about any hardware department. I originally tried some hook clips that were specifically made for key rings, but they weren't heavy duty enough for the kind of life I lead. I just happened to spot this one in the hardware department several years ago, and well, the rest is history!
Heres why it works:
TWO: Crocs - Mine are faux, my husbands are real, but either works great! We each keep a pair of these right by the door on a multi-purpose tray (perfect for winter snow boots too!). This allows us to quickly slip them on to run the garbage out, put the chickens away, get the mail, pick vegetables, take the compost out, etc. No searching all over for shoes, and no wasted time having to tie them. It is so simple to slip them on and run right outside. I don't have to worry about stepping in mud or chicken poop with my good shoes because stepping in that stuff is exactly what these are for! When I come back in the door they immediately go right back on the tray, mud and all! Want to wash them? Simple, just hose them down. No stress, no worries. Notice the ones on the tray are lined for winter use? I have another pair in purple with no lining for the summer :-)
THREE: All Surfaces Clear - When the surfaces in your house are clear, your home looks, or appears, clean! When the house appears clean, you feel better and have no worries or stress about anyone suddenly visiting or stopping by. How is this accomplished? First, get rid of the knick-knacks that take up space (and collect dust) on tables, shelves, etc. Second, get rid of extra furniture and anything that takes up unnecessary floor space. The same goes for kitchen counters and the top of the refrigerator too! Less is more! The bottom line is that you should be able to easily wipe a rag across any surface in your home to dust, sweep, mop, and or vacuum any time you choose. You shouldn't have to clean, before you clean! This goes a long way towards making the house appear clean even if you haven't recently dusted or swept! Win-win:-)
FOUR: Make the Bed - I don't really mean make the bed, which if done correctly like in a motel room can take a long time to tuck in the sheets, blankets etc. I mean make the bed appear to be made, or made good enough. First, you need to have a nice headboard. It doesn't have to be expensive, and you can even make your own, but it is 'key' for this tip to work. Then get an oversized comforter or summer quilt and a few matching decorative pillows. Keep the comforter on the bed and use it. Yup, sleep with it every night and in the morning as soon as you get up for the day, straighten it out and throw the decorative pillows at the top by the headboard. It will look great and literally only take a few seconds to accomplish! So simple!
FIVE: Mail (not the 'e' kind) - The mail basically gets delivered every day but Sunday. Most of the time it is junk and bills. Not exactly a pleasant experience. How to simplify? Well, you could get a PO Box and only pick it up once a week, but this costs money. A better way is to just grab it, sort the junk and the bills, simply throw the junk right out and stick the rest in the 'bill basket.' Immediately. Don't let it sit around. Don't waste your time opening it. The 'bill basket' is simply a drawer in a wicker corner unit that I throw all the bills and other 'non-junk' mail into. Once a month when it's time to pay the bills, I go through it. That's when I file the papers that aren't bills but need to be saved (like EOB's) and sort through what bills do need to be paid. Yes, I only do bills once a month. I took the time to make all my bills due on or about the same day each month, and I sit down to pay them all about a week before they are due. It takes less than an hour of my time, on one day only, of each and every month! Thats about 12 hours a year to pay bills!
Did you like any of the tips above? Then stay tuned!
Our book "The ABC's of Creating A Simpler Life" is coming soon! It is chock full of tips from A to Z to help in creating your simpler life. There is something for everyone, no matter what stage of your life you are at or where you live.
After all, who doesn't want life to be simpler?
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Keep it simple my friends :-)
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Hi there! I'm Kathie, the author behind Creating A Simpler Life blog. I'm excited to share our longterm projects (and planning) toward building our future retirement homestead in the Adirondack Mountains of New York. In the meantime I will be sharing all the other little things we do that are part of creating our simpler life!