Thursday, December 29, 2016

Jan 2017 Proposal: Get 'Er Done!

Facing January and another new year ahead...I feel like I've been here before. And when I looked at previous Januarys on my blog (guess what?) I have been!
I'm an optimist, despite evidence that I shouldn't be. I started this blog on Jan 1, 2010, with a word for the whole year. That was 7 years ago! 
Seems almost every year I make almost the same vow...or pick a "word" for the year...or make resolutions to follow all year long. Some years things get done and some years they don't. I guess the important thing is to try...right?
But frankly, I have been trying. I start each year with good intentions and then sort of fizzle out. After thinking hard about the last 7 years of resolution incompletion, I had to ask myself...What is my goal? 

My goal is two-fold. First to get my incomplete projects done and second, to reduce my "stuff" overall by 50% by using the "use it" or "lose it" concept. 

As far as reducing stuff, I've done pretty well in the last 6 months. I'd say I'm at the halfway point in clearing out closets, rooms and such. We sold a few things (like our couch and some musical equipment) but mostly we donated, or gave away, a lot. 
The way I look at it is that possessions are what you cherish, but "stuff" are the things you stuff away into a drawer or closet...or hide (because you might need it some day) in your attic or garage. 

Sometimes we "stuff" things we plan to use for projects, thus buying ourselves a little more time. But if we're not careful, managing the stuff eats up all our time and the project gets neglected or forgotten...sometimes left in a half-finished state for ages!

So I've got a proposal for you if you want to play along. Instead of planning for the whole year, lets concentrate on just one month. Let's all use the month of January to Get 'Er Done!  Here at Rivercrest, that means combining a lot of old - but good - ideas. 

1. By New Years Eve, we'll have our list of projects that need completion and have them all prioritized. 

2. We'll place a moratorium on unnecessary spending for the whole month of January. If it's not on the list of needs, then it's a want and will be ignored. To us that means no lunches or dinners out, no new clothes, books or housewares, no movies out, etc. This will give us time and money to put to better use.

3. We'll also be completing projects and un-stuffing the this I mean we'll be using what we have on hand since we're not buying anything! That old drapery in the closet might become the cover for the bench cushion I've been meaning to make.

4. We also will be cleaning out our kitchen cabinets and freezer by making meals from what we have and also making our own coffee, ice tea, and snacks...(Goodbye Starbucks for the month!)

These aren't new ideas! I'm just proposing to limit our resolution to one month so we don't lose our momentum. Most of these ideas were handed down by previous generations...Did your grandma have this saying?  Mine did:

Use it up...Wear it out,
Make it do...Or do without!

Our household will be following that old saying for the whole month of January and getting projects done and stuff unstuffed. If you're doing something similar, let us all know so we can check in on your progress as I hope you'll check on mine. 

Thanks for dropping by!


  1. I'm with you, Mom, on all of it! I'm watching a Netflix documentary, Minimalism. Watch it and you'll be even more inspired to let go of the "stuff" to focus on the important things. Now if I could just convince my little packrat.

  2. Jaysa, as long as she hoards in her little bedroom you won't have to see her "stuff". I did see the title of that documentary, but didn't watch it. Going back to see it today now that you've endorsed it.

  3. Oh good grief. I wish you could look in my closet! Well, no I don't either! :) I still have not bought that book you told my about. I've got to git rid of "stuff"! Poppy says we will rent a spot at the indoor flea market in January or February and have a big sale. Hope we get rid of more than we did at the yard sale.

  4. Before the remodel gone bad i had a hard time getting rid of things...but since then I have been decluttering and trying to keep things simple. More word for 2017 - keeping it simple.

  5. What a great goal for January! I would love to join in, but I am afraid that I am going to be so busy. I'm helping a friend with her Aunts estate. Her home is filled to the brim! Makes you really want to eliminate when you see that! But I am bringing a lot of it here to sell because they live in such a rural area. Hubby just bought two shelves for me and put them in the garage to put boxes on. I went last week and came home with a car full. I was good and hardly bought anything. Even though she had tons of treasures! Hope I can continue to use will power! :P I have a few quilts that have been started that I would like to get completed this year.

  6. That all seems a little harsh. I totally agree about the reduction of 'stuff' but if you don't allow yourself to buy anything like books, and an occasional meal out - where's the point? I guess it depends what your priorities are, and how much you spend on Starbucks (for example), but you can't give up everything. I won't be buying any clothes, housewares and the like, but I WILL be treating myself to a coffee or two. Because I'm worth it.

  7. I've been cleaning things out this past year and will continue in the new year. I too have a few projects started that need finishing. Hopefully I get them done this year.

  8. Great idea, one month of get-er-done - hope you post about how things are going all through January.

  9. I love your decked out moose! I'm not sure what my plan for 2017 is yet. The last day of the old year is good for planning and that is what I'll be doing tomorrow. Also choosing my word for the year.

    1. Cynthia, my husband and I were broke and lived in separate states our first New Year's Eve together. We spent the evening goal setting for the next 5 years and have done the same thing for the 22 years we've been together. I agree with you, it is the best day to plan. We always write it down and review it throughout the year.

  10. yep...I do believe we are on the same wave length...I'm getting myself all geared up to start on these projects..just been cleaning a closet and found ANOTHER project that I'd forgotten all about...(taking 1 step forward and 2 backwards. it seems...)

  11. We are definitely on the same page. I am clearing the decks and getting rid of a lot of cutter too. Looking forward to a great new year!

  12. I love your idea!
    You go girl!
    Sounds like you've got it all very well planned.
    I know you will do it! You've already done so much!

    But, for myself, I'm going to have slightly different goals.
    Each week on Trash day, I'm throwing away some things or making a donation of it.
    But my main focus is on working on my Art and making it a top priority.
    I always do everything else first but not this year.
    And I'm going take better care of myself and how I eat.
    I'm going to go "Forks over Knives" style.
    I'll watch my spending, but I always do.
    BUT this year I'm going to have Starbucks and go to the movies! Last year I only went to one movie and I have never ever had a manicure in my life and this year I will!
    Luckily I got some gift certificates for Christmas to enable me to do this.
    I think that what really changed my mind of this is that several people I know, have suddenly developed cancer and don't have long for this world. My new goal is to enjoy myself a little bit and stop worrying so much.
    I'm going to have faith that The Universe will send me what I need and relax a bit and treasure just TODAY!
    Happy New Year!
    Here's to 2017!
    Best year yet!

  13. Dear Sugar:
    Happy New Year - it's almost here! You asked about the paint. It was CeCe Caldweld's Vintage White! We used a lot of it! Thanks for all the great tips too on this post!

  14. Happy New Year. I hope it is a good one. Great ideas for taking things one month at a time.

  15. Happy New Year, Sugar! I like your idea of making plans one month at a time. That is doable and not overwhelming. Thank you for your visit to my blog, and your sweet comments.

  16. I love the idea of planning for one month at a time, making it easier to achieve in small doses rather than overwhelming oneself with large numbers of tasks for the year. Have a wonderful New Year.