An update!

Wow this blog has been sadly neglected! If you’ve just arrived here via the 2011 All Star minimalist blogs and are wondering why tumbleweeds are blowing past and there is a sheen of dust over the last entry, fear not, we are still alive.  We have been trundling along with our downsizing and have been too busy to actually blog about it!

So – an update is called for!  Our plans are progressing nicely!  As you can see from the do list, several more things have been crossed off.  The latest downsize has been books.  I knew this would be a mammoth project – we have a lot of books – but I didn’t fully appreciate just HOW MANY! We didn’t count them up but it’s got to be over 400 books that we are giving away.  We considered trying to sell them, but looking on eBay at what job lots of books go for, we thought we would get so little for them we would rather give them to charity; there is an Oxfam bookshop near us and even if they only sell for 50p per book that will still be a couple of hundred quid to a good cause, which gives me a shiny warm glow.

I will live up to my billing of providing “racy clutter shots” (love that!) by letting you peruse the following …

  • Crates of books ready to cart off to charity.  There are 9 full crates in this shot, and a further 2 in another room!  Insane!!


  • Here is what we have left – one small bookshelf each.  Yes, mine is the one with the Harry Potters, Dougal and Firefly; Dave’s is the one with serious literature and autobiographies!

  • And here are some empty shelves waiting to be disposed of.  This photo makes me happy! 🙂

Also on the book front, Dave bought me a Kindle for my birthday and I am absolutely made up with it.  I toyed with the idea of one for ages, but I love the feel of books and was quite anti the whole idea of an e-reader.  However, the prospect of all my books in one small package won me over and I decide to give it a go.  The plan is that I will keep the shelf of books as shown above, but to try to buy any new books on the Kindle.   I have actually been incredibly impressed with it!  It’s easy to read, easy on the eyes, lighter and easier to hold than a paperback so great for reading in bed.  My one dislike was that I love to read in the bath and didn’t dare take the Kindle in with me – I am a bit of a klutz so expensive electronic equipment and water are not a good mix!  But I have even managed to sort that; I can stand my Kindle up in its case on a stool next to the bath, set it to voice mode but with the sound turned right down (the voice is very irritating!) and it scrolls through the text at a leisurely pace while I read hands free from my bath.  Result!

As well as the books, I have also scanned and saved all my photos and ditched the hard copies.  Don’t worry, they are all backed up onto external hard drive 🙂  So we are doing quite well at clearing out space, although there is a long way to go still! It’s scary how much clutter we have accumulated over the years!  There will be some car boot sales in our future …

In other Big Move news, we have someone coming over next week to talk about buying the business.  WOW!!!  That feels like a big step!  I am also starting a zumba class next week which is very exciting!  Previously I have only taught Les Mills classes which I have really enjoyed, but these are attached to gyms who have to pay an expensive licence fee to run them.  Given that we are likely to be moving to the middle of nowhere with no gyms for miles around this was not going to be much use bringing in any money after our Big Move.  So, I have trained in zumba which I can teach anywhere – I’m starting classes here to get some experience and then hopefully this will have the potential to be an income stream when we move.  An income stream doing something I enjoy!  So all good!

This week I actually took what felt like the first irrevocable step towards the Big Move – everything up to this point has just been clearing stuff out, and we could have backed out at any point without anything really changing.  On Friday, though, I handed in my notice for one of the Les Mills classes I teach, in order to focus on zumba.  This might sound trivial but it was quite a huge deal for me.  I have taught the class for over 4 years; it was the first class I trained in and taught when I became a fitness instructor, and I am very fond of the members there.  However, I knew if we wanted to go ahead with our plans this would have to go at some point.  I’m taking on 2 zumba classes per week, and have been so busy with that and my existing classes, that something had to give.  The whole point of this change for us is to have less stress, more free time, better quality of life  ….. but continuing with that class while doing 2 new ones was going to mean I was teaching 4 nights every week and having LESS free time!   So I knew it was the right thing to do; but it was still scary taking that step, and it felt quite momentous.  The great thing was that after I formally handed in my notice I felt as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.  I felt so happy and calm and chilled for the rest of the day.  I’m sure I will shed a tear at the end of my last class, but I know I’ve done the right thing and it feels good to have made the first real step towards our big change.

Whew! If you’re still reading thanks for following along this far!  I shall endeavour to update more often over the next few months so the entries are a little shorter!


One Response to “An update!”

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