Little steps…

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When the lurgy lingers there isn’t much you can do with little people other than cuddle on the couch.

This week between the cuddles I managed a big tick off my background list. You know the one, not the day to day list but the one with the jobs you want to get to. The fixing, selling, sorting, framing, cleaning or whatever of something.

I finally finished digitising our CD collection and there they are boxed up and ready for drop off (sigh of accomplishment – aaah).

It’s been a nostalgic walk back time. The music I played through break ups, the songs sung out of tune while driving on ‘p’ plates with my best friend, uni days, holidays, concerts and the past 20 years of my life with Greg. Although once the kids arrived, new music interests and purchases seemed to have stalled, or do the wiggles count?!

I haven’t stopped listening to music since I started this little project and I couldn’t be happier. Good for the soul I say, music on repeat.

I don’t feel sad parting with the physical cd’s, the music easily available now and I’ll listen to it more often.

Listening to the music is where the memories and the feelings are, not from owning the little square plastic covered discs.

I’ve struggled with what to do with the CD’s. There are plenty of craft projects on Pinterest and one day while out wandering last year I happened upon a lady who’d made a dress out of old CDs!

I don’t fancy a decorated wall of discs nor a dress so I’ve opted to donate them to a second-hand CD shop. I hope they are able to make someone happy, but undoubtedly what can’t be recycled will likely end up in a landfill.

I do feel pained at the waste. Thankfully, technology has provided us with a better option for purchasing, storing and listening to music. No need for physical clutter or an additional player.

What I take from this latest declutter is to gently continue to move forward with resolve to mindfully consume, always.

It’s been a slow week, some lovely connections and online conversations, lots of bread making, a little pondering the future. It’s exciting, the simpler life becomes the clearer the path.

Reflecting is also nice, as the birthday season is starting to hit here I think of what a difference some intention can make.

Over consumption and waste generated from kids parties and presents is an easy place to resolve to be more responsible and a couple of years ago I set about doing just that. Each small change adds up to a big difference.

How nice it would be if a less is more approach to parties was the ‘norm’, imagine how many bin loads of rubbish could be reduced.

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Kids parties:

We now always use what we have, there is never a need to buy throw away plates, cups or cutlery. If you need more, borrow from next door.

I made some bunting last year, simple bunting, nothing fancy, sewn by hand. I used what was in the cupboard and we always decorate with this same bunting, no need for streamers or balloons.

Party bags are not necessary, certainly they don’t need to be packed with plastic bits and pieces. Think creatively, make library bags to take home. Get the kids to pot seeds and paint a pot to take. Or use paper bags that can be recycled and get the kids to decorate them.

It is easy to play games with what you have. Musical statues, dress ups, egg and spoon races, in my experience kids just want to play.

Parties shouldn’t be hard, everything doesn’t have to match because ultimately it is about the celebrating and the fun. Kids only remember the fun, truly.

Kids presents:

It would be impossible for me to say we will never buy plastic again, but gee wouldn’t that be lovely!

I guess I try to apply the principle of less is more.

I find it’s a lot about the expectations we’ve encouraged with our kids.

Gifts for the sake of gifts are a waste, kids should be able to use gifts.

Traditions and celebrations are maybe even more important, choosing dinner, making pancakes for breakfast together, allowing chocolate topping 😉 One of my friends always has the day off with her kids.

I also try to give presents that will add to imaginative or creative play. Dress ups, books, lego, (I know gasp, plastic! But lego is played with for whole days across the ages here, and it will be passed on).

Little kids don’t know or honestly care where toys come from. Once I found a huge lego city set in the op shop for $15. Our parents pop a little something in their bank accounts rather than plastic gifts, one day this will be a gap year experience for them, slowly it adds up.

PJ’s, slippers, gumboots, soccer boots necessary items that all seem to work across the ages here.

The older kids get a little easier. My son loves kit so a soccer outfit or gear he needs always pleases. Last year I gave my artsy daughter a box of craft supplies, she thought it was the best gift ever.

My older two kids have recently started wanting to donate a portion of any money they’ve been given to charity.

Packaging is something I consider when purchasing gifts, I can’t buy something that is unnecessarily packaged, it’s one of the main reasons why I can’t shop at ALDI, packaging uuugh.

I’m not perfect and I hope that in the future my gifts become more ethically sourced.

For me, it’s about gently stepping forward with intention and slowly change follows. Progress not perfection.

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Gosh I love @dallasclayton on Instagram, beautiful art and heartfelt words. 

What do you think, less is more?

Right, what’s next on the playlist 😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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