Monday, March 2, 2009

Within Means

{Art by Thomas Kinkade}

I have been thinking a lot lately about living within our means. We have, at times, over the last 17 years lived beyond our financial means. But what a beautiful thing it is to grow and mature, learn lessons, and make mistakes. We've come to a place where we get by without debt and borrowing.

There are other ways of living beyond ones means. By living beyond our space. By cramming loads of un-needed stuff into a space that might otherwise fit our family just fine. Thus the bigger, better saga begins.

This has been a much harder lesson to learn for me. I am a reformed collector and generally a vintage housewares junkie. Anything that caught my eye I wanted to collect. It never dawned on me that I might just be able to have that ONE thing, and not an entire collection. For many years, I stuffed our home with those things I found beautiful, but not necessarily useful. It has taken me a long time to let go. When I go *treasure~hunting* now, I have more purpose in mind. More needs in mind, instead if wants. That sounds funny to me though, because *really*, what do I need. At any rate, I have had a shift in mindset, and that is progress.

I think back to those years and wish I had known better. Feeling cramped in a 700 sq. foot house that would have suited our family just fine, had I not been keeping so much we didn't need. I long to talk some sense into my younger self. As you might expect, after we had a few more kids, we enlarged our house and bought even more stuff. Our house is now 1600 sq. feet. I am very grateful for the extra space, but feel it might have been unnecessary, had I known what I know now. Hindsight is 20/20, you know. LOL.

For the past 2 or 3 years I have been on a mission to rid our home of stuff, while still keeping it warm, cozy, and inviting. I have been freed from the burden of caring for things and enjoy caring for my family instead. We are living within our spacial means and I am so happy.

I have to keep at this daily, ever mindful of too much stuff creeping in. I have gotten really good at giving things away, and I am still not done. My children understand that it we don't need or use an item, we pass it on to bless someone else.

We are having a lovely and productive day, and I hope you are too.

In God's Love, Tami


  1. A beautiful post to start the week, Tami. Hope you have a lovely day!

  2. What an excellent post and a good reminder. I, too, am on a mission to get rid of the unnecessary. It's amazing how much freer I feel with less things. Holly

  3. Well....said. I have been thinking lately about how to live even more simply. Simply in our diet, our space, everything really. The clutter whether on my table or in my head steals my time to do the most important things.

  4. Your blog continues to inspire me. I've mentioned you and made a link. Hope you don't mind. I'm sure my readers will find you inspirational as well!
    I find it easy to collect clutter even living in an RV. I keep asking myself, "Where does it come from and how does it get here?"

  5. a few weeks ago i decluttered and organized my yarn..It feels good to live simpler and not bring things we dont need in..
    great post!
    Have a great week..

  6. Hi Tami,
    I just thought I'd let you know that I enjoy your posts. I've got you on my blog list so I can see when you've written something new.

    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage