Simplifying Problem Stuff

blue blanket clutter

I’m typically pretty down to earth with the way I decorate, but I have noticed over the years that there are different style diva’s living inside me, all with their own idea of what constitutes perfection. It’s a recipe for ending up with an eclectic decorating scheme for sure, especially when all those divas decide they can’t compromise and get along. ;)

One of my inner style divas is a 1950′s throwback, who loves glitz and glamour. This particular inner style diva doesn’t play nice with the others, so I tend to keep her suppressed…. but I fell prey a month or so back.

As a person who lives pretty simply, I don’t do a lot of shopping anymore, unless I need something. But I found myself going out on a yard sale/thrifting day with Cora. This was an all-out shopping assault, the likes of which I hadn’t subjected myself to in years. We were out in a huge Suburban (plenty of trunk space for anything we might want to buy) with the newspaper in hand and a route planned out.

For someone who completely stopped the yard sale route for years, it was almost exhausting keeping up with a diehard shopper. I also know the evil lure of temptation, and how quickly I can succumb to the desperate need for a bauble. Sanity had flown out my window many times when confronted with a too-good-to-be-true deal, so I was on my toes guarding against it.

I did wonderfully, participating pleasantly in the yard-saling experience, despite not buying a thing, until we made our way to the fateful estate sale.

Estate sales are always a little melancholy, because all yard salers know there’s been a loss, and this one was no different, with some white haired golden girls running the show, the smell of their cigarette smoke filling the mostly empty house.

It was towards the end of yard sales hours, around noon on a Sunday afternoon, and the estate had been picked clean by the time we hit it.

I spent a lot of time eyeing a food dehydrator that looked like it was still new in the packaging, but I managed to resist. Kitchen space is just about non-existent for Patrick and I right now, and unless I wanted to start dehydrating food on my computer desk it wasn’t going to happen. ;)

And then I saw it.

Ahhhhh. What a magnificent shade of blue it was. So completely different than most blues.

I eyed the large box sitting askew in the middle of the spare bedroom. All I could see was luxurious billows of cloth, taunting me with a shade almost unlike anything I’d seen before, dare I say it was practically perfection.

Nothing like sky blue, baby blue, or pastel blue.

Definitely not a bland colonial blue or navy blue.

Nothing as obnoxious as a turquoise blue gone over the top or a blaring primary blue.

This blue was, this blue was better than royal blue, deeper than cobalt.

There was a depth and a hue to the blue like nothing I’d ever quite seen before.

It went beyond azure, beyond cerulean.

I took a step towards the box.

I wasn’t going to, you know, buy it or anything, I just wanted to see what was in the box… maybe touch that fabric a little.

Cora, being a seasoned yard saler herself, had already eyeballed the box and rummaged through it’s contents.

She buzzed by during her second scan-through of the room and pronounced it a lovely blanket with curtains to match that she’d buy if I didn’t want them.

My mind battled with itself, reason fighting with desire.

Reason said, “Now Tanja, you know you have a weakness for blankets. You already have two, a summer blanket and a winter comforter, that’s more than enough. And both those blankets are in your color scheme and perfect. Remember that Margaret Muir comforter you bought on sale for “just a hundred dollars” last year? It’s still absolutely beautiful and much nicer than this old rag. And your fuzzy purple blanket is the epitome of softness, perfect for a lightweight summer night bedspread. Walk away. Just walk away.”

Lust knew it had the upper hand. Lust said, “Sweet mother of god I believe this is a bona fide vintage piece. I’m feeling 1950 here hon. I’m feeling some Marilyn action. Look at the luster! Oh it catches the light beautifully. And no pattern, just the stitches creating those beautiful circles…. don’t forget that mile long matching curtain. It’s wide enough to do the whole closet.”

Meanwhile the magazine cutout I’d kept for years and years before finally decluttering it swam before my mind…. the blue room, blue sofa, blue curtains, blue rug, in that shade of blue that just didn’t exist except in magazine cutouts, and yet here it was before me.

I throbbed with desire.

I searched for a tag, a tag that would bring me back to my senses, let me know this was just a stupid Target knock-off with ten years of age on it, but there was nothing but ancient aged stitching on the backside, the yellowed color itself a giveaway that this particular bedspread was older than me.

Purple was out.

Blue was in.

I wrapped my arms around the old dusty box and hauled my treasure to the chainsmoking gatekeeper. I parted with my five dollars while I looked longingly back at the food dehydrator, and quelled the butterflies dancing victoriously through all the cells of my being.

Victory!

***

Even as I carried that box back to the Suburban, I knew I’d done wrong.

I was a bad minimalist.

***

As the mothball smell of the bedspread worked it’s way up my sinuses, I knew I’d just let one of my diva’s get the best of me.

I was on my third washing of the bedspread, on gentle cycle of course, and the aroma of mothball was still wafting through the air, filling the laundry room.

This was during the rainy season of summer, and I ended up leaving it on the line for two days straight, during a tropical storm to get the mothball smell out of it.

With each washing I saw that the backing on the blanket was deteriorating completely and leaving small bits of off-color white fabric chunks all over the exquisite blue.

I had bought a glamorous blanket, but I had also bought a project.

It was obvious that mothball chemical had been the only thing keeping this blanket together.

To make it functional I’d need to sew an entirely new backing onto it.

For even better results, I’d have to remove the old backing, along with the ratty interior stuffing, restuff it and reback it.

Could I do it?

Yes.

Did I have the equipment to do it?

Well. With no sewing room, sewing machine, or space to lay it out flat, it might be a little trixy. But I’d sewn a lot by hand in the past, and I could totally do it if I wanted to.

And that right there was the crux of the problem.

I didn’t want the hassle of messing with it, especially since I had two very nice blankets already. They completely filled my needs, they were attractive, clean, and easy to wash.

***

Now we dance into the simple solution to every packrat’s dilemma. We grab a few words of wisdom from my darling Patrick, a natural minimalist.

Pragmatic Patrick’s advice was simple, “Just get rid of it. We don’t need it anyways.”

Me, “But the blue is just incredible. It’s divine.”

Patrick, “So fix it then and keep it.”

Me, “Well, I don’t think I’ll take the time to fix it. I know myself and I don’t want to mess with it.”

Patrick, “You either keep it and fix it, keep it and store it, or you get rid of it. Those are the three solutions I see. Pick one.”

Such rational thought. Where does it come from?

I looked at the absolutely exquisite otherworldly blue before me. I ran my hands across it’s falling-apart polyester fabric, and I said goodbye to my inner Marilyn’s perfect yet imperfect vintage cerulean blue bedspread set.

***

Moral of the clutter story:

First, don’t go yardsaling with your mother-in-law if you don’t want to buy stuff.

Second, give yourself the freedom to step away from problem things:

-Problem things are shirts that you’re always pulling back into place while you’re wearing them, or the coffee cup with the lip that fits your face just wrong, making it awkward to drink coffee from it.

-Problems things often require action. They need to have their backing replaced, or their button sewed back on. They need to have their blades sharpened, or their wheels oiled.

-Problem things are the things you only see once every few years when you pull it out of the closet, feel confused and don’t know what to do with it, and put it back in the closet where you found it…. likely all the way in the back of the tippy-top shelf, or at the back of the closet floor.

-Problem things make you go, “Sigh.”

-Problem things make you feel inadequate for not having gotten to them yet. Problem things highlight your lack of superwoman or supermanness. If only you were organized enough you wouldn’t have all this stuff laying around needing to be done….

But there’s a solution. Get rid of your problem things, and don’t buy projects to begin with.

I am back to my purple fuzzy blanket, along with my Margaret Muir delight, now that it’s wintertime. I adore my bedding. It’s relatively new, I bought it just a few years ago and it’s in perfect condition.

It makes my inner Tanja happy, because it’s simple, clean, soft, cozy, beautiful, uplifting, and inspiring.

I donated my problem bedspread to the local Hospice thrift store, where I’m sure it went home with another adoring fan overcome by her inner Marilyn.

***

What problem things have you been hanging on to? What would it take for you to either fix it or get rid of it?

p.s. Patrick and I were talking over lunch the other day when he asked me what one of my favorite words was. I’d never thought about it before, but then the word cerulean popped into my mind. I’d read a book featuring a doll with cerulean blue eyes when I was a kid, and I’d always particularly liked the word. I thought it would be fun to write a post that slipped the word in, and that’s when I knew I needed to share this story of the blue blanket with all of you. Hope you enjoyed it, and I hope you’re having a sensationally simple holiday season. Now go make some time to get rid of some problem stuff. Enter the holidays lighter this year! ;)

 

the minimalist packrat clutter bootcamp

 

101 Responses to “Simplifying Problem Stuff”

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  1. Jody says:

    Great story, Tanja and it was a gorgeous blue! I was sorry to hear you got rid of it entirely. Since you were so drawn to it, you could have perhaps cut out a small section and even put it in a simple white frame or made a little coaster. There are ways to enjoy things even on a smaller scale…so long as we don’t overindulge in lots of smallish things! Of course, now you have the photo which is even more minimalist! :) I miss your minimalist blog posts…nice treat to read this one. Enjoy your holidays!

    • Hi Jody,

      Perhaps my posts are now minimalist in how frequently they get published. ;) I’ve been writing a lot but haven’t been publishing much lately. I could have used a little of the fabric in some project or another, but at least this way it went out intact and ready for someone else. Between the curtain and the bedspread there was so much cloth I would have felt guilty ruining it to use just a little piece of it.

      Glad you enjoy reading me, even when I’m infrequent. ;)

  2. *Edited to add that I didn’t quote Patrick verbatim, and he has announced to me that he never would have said, “Keep it and store it.” Perhaps he’ll forgive my liberal use of quotation marks. ;)

  3. Oh Tanja, that was just astonishingly beautiful! I don’t think I could have passed it up either!!

    As for us, we have these horrible sippy cups that ALWAYS leak. I haven’t forked over the $20-30 to replace them, so just deal with the annoying spills. I’m sure there are other things that I’ll think of as soon as I click “submit”, but that’s all I can think of at the moment.

    And Patrick’s reaction, would be EXACTLY what The Hubs would say too! Glad to see you decided to publish this :)
    Megyn @ Minimalist Mommi recently posted..Progression

  4. Linda Sand says:

    I have a neck pillow that’s wearing out. I love the shape of it and how comfortable it is. I ordered a new one but the fabric is wrong and it is overfilled so it is not comfortable. I would like to patch mine but I’ll have to do it by hand with a non-matching fabric and I’m not sure I can live with that either. I’ve been telling myself I can make covers for other small pillows that would mix and match the patch but I’ve never been fond of the patchwork look. So, it just wears out a little more every day and I check the maker’s website every now and then to see if there’s fabric there I could live with. Maybe I should buy the pattern and make my own then stuff it with the filling from this one. Then it would have the right amount, right? Would a handstiched pillow hold up to everyday use? Or would I have to buy a sewing machine to make one? Like your bedspread, there doesn’t seem to be any right answer.
    Linda Sand recently posted..Official

  5. Christa says:

    Glad to know i am not the only “bad minimalist” on occasion. :)

  6. Good tale Tanja; sort of a possession romance tale: the furtive glance that becomes fascination that becomes infatuation. Then throbbing with lust you embrace your heart’s desire only to find that it smells of mothballs and falls apart if washed. Destined to be a classic I’m sure!

    I too have had some odd decorating stages. At one point I spray painted everything I owned satin black. I’m not sure if I was deeply depressed or if it was just the Darth Vader fascination when Star Wars came out. Fortunately I got over it.

    Just this morning Marie and I were in Lowe’s looking for something and I came across a home weather station that displays the temperature and humidity from both inside and outside. I was fascinated. And it was on sale: marked down from $25 to $19. Marie asked if I wanted one. And I seriously thought about it. I love gadgets! But really – what do I need with this? I’m happy to say that I passed it up. But for a moment there I felt a little throbbing of passion myself.
    Allan Douglas recently posted..A Season of Giving

  7. Hi Tanja!
    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your post. I loved reading it and was so curious as to how it would all end! A very important story with so much to learn from so again, thank you for sharing this.
    My two main categories of stuff I find difficult to hold on to is books and gifts. But I mean like really old gifts, like this small stuffed animal of an elephant my dad gave me when I was 5 years old. Or my grandfathers Polaroid camera from the 50′s! He is deceased now and I get a knot in my stomach when I think about giving it away.
    I will soon have to face all this though as I will be embarking on an adventure in about 3 months. My stuff can’t come with me!
    Much love and light,
    Tali

  8. Tamara says:

    I’d say that was a “celestial” blue if ever I saw one, and I’d fall for it too. My favorite colors are purple (and that shade of) blue. My weaknesses dwell with electronic gadgets and simple spiritual objects. (I always have to have the yin and the yang. ;)) Wonderful post and a sweet story. Have a blissful winter holiday, Tanja.
    Tamara recently posted..Lack Friday and Cynical Monday

  9. Jill Foley says:

    Love this – thank you!
    Jill Foley recently posted..Joy to the World

  10. creative me says:

    Your story made me a tiny bit sad. I am deeply affected by colour too. I wanted you to say you had made a bolster pillow or printer dust cover or something with that stunning blue. My habit is to take worn out things I LOVE and cutting out a square to make a throw pillow. (I have some ecclectic throw pillows now… one for each Diva… a Cashmere sweater pillow, Marvin Martian embroidered pillow, black cordurouy pillow, vibrant blue raw silk with little beadworks that was a dressy top that never fit right but I LOVED….. etc.) I’m glad you got such a great photo though, it may not capture the full depth, but it is a cool picture anyhow.
    creative me recently posted..Gifts of Experience

    • The photo was me being incredibly lazy. ;) I took half a dozen shots of the blanket at night in dim light. None of them turned out right, but I never bothered to make more. Slacker! ;)

      I thought there was an interesting mood to the photo I picked though, and the color of the bedspread kind of comes through in part of the photo… that’s kind of cool.

      Your pillow collection sounds lovely. I smiled at the Marvin Martian. Hmmm. Maybe when I’m a little more settled down I’ll have a pillow for each diva too. I’ve never figured out how to marry all of the styles I love together.
      Tanja from Minimalist Packrat recently posted..Simplifying Problem Stuff

  11. I have been working to get rid of those things I have been hanging on to. A lime green cable knit sweater that I love. I pulled it on this weekend and it was STILL too short in the length and the sleeves. Not sure why I think that it will grow while stored away for the summer. And 2 hoodies (which I wear a lot of day-to-day) that are SO tight they take my ears off each time I pull them over my head. These 3 things are going to my little elf of a daughter who is 5 inches shorter than me with short arms. Surely these things will fit her and I think she will like them. If not I will give her the freedom to pass on to one of her other starving artist friends.
    Good to hear from you Tanja!
    Living the Balanced Life recently posted..The moment in which nothing else matters

  12. laura says:

    Last weekend I went to a bag sale ( $2 for a bag of clothing) at the local thrift shop ( when will I ever learn ). Oh I probally spent an hour finding my “deals” Well got home tried the things on and there was only one item that I truly wanted to keep ( a super comfy and in good condition fleece sweatshirt) and 2 other shirts I am kind of iffy about. You know you get into that mentality that says well I can fill a whole bag for 2 bucks might as well. The last time I went to one of these I maybe kept one or two things and I told myself I was not going to do this anymore LOL. So anyhow now I need to redonate all the rest back to the thrift store……and I am really not going to do this again…really :)

  13. jaime says:

    This is a story I could have told1 Oh, how many projects i have brought home. the visions I was trying to fulfill. The insistence that “this is the thing I have been searching for all my life.” I totally relate to this. It is also something I really needed to read right now. We are in the process of pulling out house together, so I am in the thrift shops and antique malls all the time. I am constantly picking things up and having to put them down again. It is always a struggle.

    I am so happy to hear from you again. I hope your new schedule is suiting you. We miss you in blogland.

    • Hi Jaime,

      Take a break from pulling the house together and enjoy it in all of it’s imperfection with Carter and Dan. ;) I’m still processing the desire to decorate perfectly with a desire to allow it to simply be. Right now it’s not much of a struggle since we’re moving, but soon I’ll have a whole apartment again and lots of space. That’s when I’ll have to be on my guard!

      It’s good to hear from you too Jaime. ;)
      Tanja from Minimalist Packrat recently posted..Ladder Cats and Living With Roommates

  14. Jaime says:

    Oh believe me I have been on a break from it all. We canceled our trip home and seriously simplified our holiday plans.
    Did I miss the announcemt about your move? I’m going back to read your last few posts again.

    • Good for you. You were doing way too much for a while. ;) Congratulations on your simplified holidays this year. I didn’t mention the move extensively. It was down in the comments a bit a few posts back. We’ve been wavering undecidedly on exactly when, but we’ve narrowed it down to the first week of January, and yes, we’re going back to Arkansas. I am thrillllllllllled to be getting back to the mountains and the people there. ;)

    • Hannah Bell says:

      I have no experience transferring from one place to another. That is why I cannot relate about this post.
      Hannah Bell recently posted..Buy Proenhance Patches

  15. Annie says:

    Oh Tanja! I do so know this feeling – the moment when you absolutely positively fall in love with something, bring it home, only to have it be a flop for one reason or another.

    I must admit I would have swooned over the blue as well. My Katie would refuse to allow it to be fixed and would use it anyway until it fell to tiny pieces around her feet, she would love that blue so much… such to be a kid!

    Sometimes the best thing to do is to just walk away and you did just that. Kudos. You have also hit on one of the reasons why I so very rarely go yardsailing. Too much temptation.

    Loved this,
    annie at annienygma.com
    Annie recently posted..Do-At-Home Laundry

  16. Bliss says:

    Oh my. Been there, done that. But I am mourning your loss. That was a very pretty shade of blue and the fact that it have you that much temporary joy…maybe it would’ve been worth salvaging. Blankets are practical whether you have two or three. Yet, I get where you are coming from and this is a timely post for me to read. I am sorting through some “inherited” items to see if they are worth keeping (mostly not), worthy of resale or Goodwill. It is exhausting. Stuff is exhausting. ~~Bliss
    Bliss recently posted..historic home tour featuring bliss ~~ part two

    • Stuff is exhausting. That’s why I got rid of it! At this point in my life, I like to keep everything as simple as possible, and that means not buying into projects, no matter how worthy they seem. The bedspread just wasn’t worth the time. ;)

  17. Bliss says:

    “gave” you that much…sorry. : )
    Bliss recently posted..historic home tour featuring bliss ~~ part two

  18. tammy says:

    i laughed all through this post. it was wonderful.
    i could even smell the moth balls. i hate that smell. and they use them for killing mice and rats!
    so if you can still smell the fumes, i’d say… not the healthiest thing in the west!
    i know just that shade of blue. i had a bedroom in a house built in the 1950′s once and it had
    a wall of windows that were “cafe curtain” size.
    i painted the room a snowy white. the cozy chenile bedspreads were pure white, hobnail i think…
    but the kicker was … blue curtains that were that same cerulean blue (i called it peacock!)
    it had a life in itself, i swear! i found 4 small taffeta pillows … 2 purple and 2 in that same blue.
    i put them on the beds. it was a perfect room. alas. just a memory. but a sweet one.
    so i know how you were torn. but i loved the story!
    have a wonderful yard-sale-free weekend!! :)
    tammy j

  19. Rolien says:

    I love this post. Really funny. And then all these people saying you could have done something with it! Of course, you could have kept it, put it somewhere, and everytime you saw it you would think “Oh I really have to make something with that blanket”. Things like that drain so much energy from your life, and I should know, I got rid of tons of stuff that I wanted to fix/use someday. A big relief. (though there is still plenty of problem stuff left)

    • Hey Rolien,

      I wrote a response post to Creative, and then didn’t publish it because it missed the mark somehow. The more I embraced a simple lifestyle, the less I wanted projects in my life. I went from my life being one gigantic project to being really choosy with what gets my time. Projects, for me, are the bane of a simple existence, and should be looked at with suspicion before being given a place in our lives. My projects right now are such simple things. I’ve been making a project out of cooking healthy, experimental meals lately. Instead of doing the same-old in the kitchen, I’m spending more time and enjoying the process. Maybe someday there will be room for craft projects in my life again, but right now I don’t believe I’d do them the justice of my full conscious attention. ;)

      And you’re right…. a very big relief to toss those projects!
      Tanja from Minimalist Packrat recently posted..Ladder Cats and Living With Roommates

  20. Maria says:

    This is definitely an entertaining story Tanja. I enjoyed reading about reason battling lust. “Reason” has some really good points, I expected it to win. It is great that you are surrounding your self with projects. These things inspire and give me something to look forward too. I think you are very creative and hope you continue what you are doing.
    Maria recently posted..how to meet women

  21. Lana B. says:

    Tanja, I love your writing style, and I love the story of the blue blanket.

  22. The dog looks like he’s sniffing around looking for a place to, um, “go.” Great story. I used to be a Power Thrifter and Yardsaler, but now I can look at stuff and mostly resist. Except maybe for cool electronic stuff.
    Mike | Homeless On Wheels recently posted..Photos Of This Morning’s Lunar Eclipse

    • The dog is Cally and she was visiting from the main house.

      Patrick was hollering because he doesn’t let animals on the bed and Cora was trying to cajole her to get off the bed and go outside. It was somewhere in that thirty seconds of chaos that I snapped my pictures. ;)
      Tanja from Minimalist Packrat recently posted..Simplifying Problem Stuff

  23. Benson Rivera says:

    Hi Tanja, This a great story and i love reading it. You really have a creative style of writing stories. I’m looking forward on your next post. Thanks for sharing this and job well done.
    Benson Rivera recently posted..My Arowana Is Not Eating No Matter What I Do !!!

  24. Rochelle says:

    I love reading this great story..You really have a creative style of writing stories.Looking forward to read again new story on your next post..
    Rochelle recently posted..penny stocks

  25. Jennifer says:

    I love how you can make a normal situation sound very interesting and entertaining. I enjoyed reading the conflict you had with yourself. I can actually relate to it especially there are many situations that I had given in to lust. Lust is very convincing indeed and he knows how to talk to me.
    Jennifer recently posted..Brainwave Entrainment Using Binaural Beats

  26. Pat says:

    Boy, can I ever relate to this story! Now when it happens, I don’t beat myself up. Instead, I think of it as entertaiment just as going out to a nice dinner or to the movies might be. It’s fun to own it for a short time and dream about the possibilities and then send it on it’s way. Having something in your hands that you love and makes you happy, even if it’s only for a brief few days isn’t so terrible. Terrible is looking around for a place to put it away “for a little while”.

  27. betty jo says:

    What an awesome post! I found your blog by following a link to your list of minimalist blogs. I haven’t been to yard sales, or any other sale for that matter, for such a long time and I used to be addicted.
    betty jo recently posted..it make$ cent$

  28. I’ve been very good of late, no projects entered into. It’s my past that’s haunting me. I started collecting paper souvenir items in my late teens (receipts of meals out, maps of campsites, parking tickets etc…) which had to be put in a scrapbook in chronological order (I know there’s an issue here :-)). It would weigh so heavy on my shoulders doing this task and keeping up to date that I would take holiday from work to sit documenting this stuff! I’m over it now, but when my children came along I couldn’t get out of the habit of keeping all sorts of bits and pieces. I’d keep the tag of their first pair of socks, the parking ticket from a hospital visit for their first scan, that kind of thing – which is actually a nightmare to document anyway! So I have a pile of boxes with this stuff in, which I don’t really want because my mindset has changed so much. However to just get the lot and chuck it is impossible, as there could be a few items in there I want to keep. Slowly I’m working my way through it but it’s a mammoth task. I do have a (large) scrapbook for each of them but am much more ruthless now. Thankfully I know this is my Achilles heel (as blankets are with you dear Tanja!) and resist any opportunity to retain such an item. By not acquiring the item in the first instance the opportunity to develop an emotional attachment to it is eliminated and therefore that primitive hoarding instinct can’t kick in (if you are susceptible to it – as I am). Lovely post and so nice to drop by – it’s been a while. Hugs from across the pond x
    Jo@simplybeingmum recently posted..10 Minute Tidy – My Cupboards – The Result

  29. rick resta says:

    hey… what the….. where are yous?

  30. Jade Tan says:

    Great post! I think yardsialing is too much work. You views are really well commended. You made me realize that it would be better to consider other things other than yardsailing.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Jade Tan
    Jade Tan recently posted..How To Get A Girl To Like You

  31. Amefil L. says:

    You should have entertained your design divas before so you would have practiced your skills in design. I like the blanket’s shade of blue. What is that kind of blue? Royal or navy?

    Thanks for posting this! I am more than curious to know that blue thing.

    -Amefil
    Amefil L. recently posted..How To Get A Girlfriend

  32. Nancy says:

    I love the color of the blanket. I love blue, of any shades. Thank you for sharing the story.
    Nancy recently posted..A Fresh Look At How to Make Beats That Are Out of This World

  33. Billy J says:

    That’s a wonderfully written story. You should have kept that stuff.

    Thanks for sharing.

    -Billy
    Billy J recently posted..Brainwave Entrainment

  34. Christa says:

    Miss reading your blog…..hint hint :-)

  35. Angela says:

    Nice story…it’s funny how even as ardent minimalists we occasionally slip up and buy something we don’t really need. But you know what, even if it wasn’t the most practical item, it sounds like you bought a great ‘experience’ anyway! And besides, you could always donate the blanket to someone who really needs one! ;-)
    Angela recently posted..Is there life after sugar?

  36. Lindset says:

    Thanks for sharing this post nice blanket also the color love it..
    Lindset recently posted..Cd Mastering Brooklyn Ny

  37. Angela Marie says:

    I can’t believe you got rid of it! I was so attached to it, even in story! I would call it “electric blue”.

    I just found your blog tonight, and this article made me read too much of it out loud to my boyfriend who didn’t nearly resonate as much with your writing or subject matter as much as I have. Thank goodness I’m learning when to save the enjoyment for myself and delight in giggling aloud.

    This article is especially effective after reading the entry about paper clutter, which caused me to think upon magazine pages I’ve kept for inspiration purposes but have actually just stacked in random boxes for “maybe some day”. And then you reference such a magazine page with all things “electric blue”…

    Ah, all I can hope for is to trust in the revelry of future stories shared in such a manner, that future chucked clutter may live on in delightful memory! Thanks so much for sharing, Tanja!

  38. Nathan D. says:

    I love the shade of the blue. Feels like the ocean. What’s that dog’s name?

    Thanks for your concepts!

    -Nathan
    Nathan D. recently posted..how to pick up girls

  39. Elisha Robinson says:

    I loved your post. It had a funnier side, but was very inspirational at the same time.
    I loved the photograph as well.

    Thanks for sharing.

    -Elisha
    Elisha Robinson recently posted..how to seduce a woman

  40. angela says:

    I understand why you were tempted, t’s a beautiful color. Could make beautiful floor pillows?

  41. Francine says:

    I love the color of your blanket..I think if I am going to sleep here I feel that I am sleeping in the ocean..Thank ou for sharing the photo..
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  42. Jaclyn says:

    I love your blanket, the color looks very good. Thank you for sharing the photo.
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  43. William says:

    Good tale Tanja; sort of a possession romance tale: the furtive glance that becomes fascination that becomes infatuation. Then throbbing with lust you embrace your heart’s desire only to find that it smells of mothballs and falls apart if washed. Destined to be a classic I’m sure! Can you share more?

    Please inform me?
    William
    William recently posted..female psychology

  44. Sheri says:

    “Give yourself the freedom to step away from problem things.”

    Great advice! Sometimes I feel trapped by a misguided shopping decision, when the best solution might be to just cut my losses and walk away. Thanks for the encouragement. I can totally relate to this article, as I face the same temptation when I find a scarf in a beautiful color.

    Hope to see you posting regularly again here soon. I really enjoy your blog!
    Sheri recently posted..Ultimate Minimalist Mini Bag

  45. Devon Cooper says:

    You know how to tell a story. I love the way you wrote this it. Both the story and picture of the blue blanket are great.
    Thanks for sharing.

    -Devon
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  46. summer says:

    You are missed, Tanja!

  47. Braddie Richards says:

    I really agree that the blanket is not a bland colonial blue or navy blue. Neither is it baby blue or sky blue. What’s really the appropriate term for that shade of blue? I love you writing style.

    -Braddie
    Braddie Richards recently posted..How To Pick Up Girls

  48. Willy Jean says:

    I try to simplify everything in my life, but sometimes things can get complicated. Great post, and great inspiration – thanks.
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  49. Lacey12 says:

    Very inspiring creation, I know that most of us here can relate with it… Life is facing every challenge in life, simplifying every single things can really help to solve every problems effectively…
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  50. What an awesome post! I found your blog by following a link to your list of minimalist blogs .This is a good thing for those who searching this kind of post.
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  51. Maryam says:

    Simplifying is the same as choosing the best among the better stuff, each one of us must posses this kind of attitude which doing things possible in a step by step process…
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  52. Rose says:

    This is a very nice post. This tips are nice.
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  53. Both the story and picture of the blue blanket are great! each one of us must posses this kind of attitude which doing things possible in a step by step process…Good thing you post such useful information like this.
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  54. Sarah says:

    Great story. I once found myself at your situation and did exactly the same.
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  55. Kelly says:

    Tanja, I love your writing style, and I love the story of the blue blanket.
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  56. Betty Daily says:

    I loved your story. It was very interesting of how you decribed the color blue of blanket.
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  57. Ethan says:

    We are in the process of pulling out house together, so I am in the thrift shops and antique malls all the time. I am constantly picking things up and having to put them down again. It is always a struggle.

    Great writing,
    Ethan
    Ethan recently posted..How To Pick Up Girls

  58. Kevin Fergusen says:

    I love this post so much. I was a little upset and your story brought a smile to my face.
    You are very good at telling stories. Keep up the good works.

    Thanks for sharing.

    -Kevin
    Kevin Fergusen recently posted..how to seduce a woman

  59. Elspeth says:

    I wonder if I might have read the same book as a child. Was your book about a mannequin who came to life? That word affected me the same way, and still does every time I read it – I think it had something to do with the way the author expressed her love for the word too.

  60. dorothea says:

    Cheers! You are not the only one who feels that way.
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  61. Mary Therese says:

    You have done such a great job here. And I really understand your side. How do you manage to make a really complicated problem into a simple one? Thank you very much for sharing this post by the way.
    Mary Therese recently posted..how to seduce a woman

  62. I loved your story. It was very interesting of how you decribed the color blue of blanket. I think it had something to do with the way the author expressed her love for the word too.
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  63. Derek Jean says:

    The great post with the great story. I have enjoyed much this story. Please share more stories like this , So, that we can enjoy them.
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  64. andre says:

    Yeah, why complicate things when they come simple?
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  65. I love the way you try to battle with yourself when it comes to spending as I am guilty as charged. Trying to be a minimalist myself, I try to think a hundred times or more before buying something that I really like but do not really need. Then again, I realized, spending nonsensically is the real thing to avoid and it won;t hurt to spend once in a while for pleasure especially if it will benefit many and you have stopped drinking coffee from Starbucks for years. :D

    Great post by the way! I loved the humor.
    -Acel
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  66. Agatha Lewis says:

    I believe that you really have a good taste in decorating and you really made my day. What’s you inspiration in your designs? Thank you very much for sharing this wonderful story of yours by the way. I had fun reading the whole thing.
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  67. Boby Miller says:

    Amazing story !!!
    You are very creative and decent writer. I really enjoyed this post.
    More success !
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  68. Maya says:

    awesome story i like it a lot .. and hey your blanket is really nice ..
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    • Your post is most educational, blue is my favorite color of all the spectrum. The small things life has to offer is not an issue anymore. But as far as weight loss, the Mediterranean Diet it is also known has is by far the best one I have tried eat good lose weight.

  69. Jakobe Warren says:

    Its a nice story of blue blanket. Also the poem of blue blanket is very enjoyable. I have enjoyed the story and the poem much. Thanks for sharing this great post with us.
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  70. Nancy says:

    Well I seriously think your entire setup was very amazing and very soothing…. Good to hear the stories also…. keep it up…
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  71. Claudine says:

    Simple things should be left simple, do not complicate and over think because it will just make it harder
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  72. Inspiring story should be shared, you have done well, thank’s for sharing.

  73. Tony says:

    A very nice story, thank you for posting this.
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  74. Anne Shanelle says:

    Great post! I always thought all my problems are really hard but then I read this post. It actually enlightened me. Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts on this matter. How do you cope up with anxiety over your problems?

    -Anne Shanelle
    Anne Shanelle recently posted..female psychology

  75. Oh, Tanya! I really enjoy reading your blog. You really like to collect blankets. Seeing your blanket in the photo makes me feel that you have a nice taste in selecting blankets.
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  76. Jenna Grimes says:

    The shade of blue is awesome! I love your writing style a lot. Nice work Tanja!!
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  77. This information is super superb, becuse it reminds me so much of myself. I am very simple garage sales and so on. I think the world is to materialistic, to the point we no longer enjoy the smaller things in life. How to talk to a girl Take a look at this.

  78. This is one great post, by the way the blanket is beautiful, and the dog helps with it all. More post should take the time to really dig in. Thanks for you great input. prasouda diet for more information on this boggling event.

  79. I like this post. You are a great writer. I like reading your story. I hope you can post more another interesting story. I love your blanket. Blue is my favorite color.
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