resolutions and such

2011 is upon us and although my long list of resolutions includes things like: loose these thirty pounds of baby weight, and become and amazing chef that seamlessly puts together incredible menus on a dime (is it just me who has the most lofty of goals and intentions on the first of each year?) there are things on my list that are deeply important to me that I hope to accomplish in some way in 2011.

Simplicity tops my list this year. It seems to be a popular idea these days with countless books and blogs and tons of ideas on how to pare down and simplify your life. I admit that I love reading these but often times feel very overwhelmed by how much I have to learn in the area of simplicity. It is however after Christmas that I look around our home and am frustrated by how much "stuff" we have accumulated and how I want to take a huge garbage sack and throw it all away and start over.

Doesn't seem like the right method to change my habits though. So this year I hope to take one tiny baby step towards the practice of simplicity each week. Setting attainable goals to clean out while also enjoying being creative without spending tons of money. For me I think it most important to define what simplicity means to me so that there is room to not be perfect but more importantly intentional about what comes into our home and how we spend our time.

I spend so much of my time cleaning and picking up with this house full of little ones. I told Mr. Gough the other day that I am fed up with cleaning up our "stuff" and if we had less of it than possibly I would have more time for the things most important to me. Time to sit on the floor with my babes working a puzzle or playing a game or making a batch of homemade bread. I think out of all the reasons to simplify my life the one most important to me is the idea of finding time to do the things that are truly important without having that nagging feeling that the "things" around me need my attention.

So first goal is to begin uncluttering our home. Getting out the garbage bags and deciding what stays and what goes. And only allowing new things to enter our home if we really need it or it has a purpose that meets my goal of simplifying.Seems easy enough but I am already getting stressed out writing this down. I admit that I like my "things" even though they drive me nuts.

After college I lived with my best friend, Claire for several years. Claire is my biggest inspiration with simplicity by far. She literally owns nothing that doesn't have extreme importance or value. Her home is gorgeous and simple, modern with just enough touches to be interesting but not overwhelming - clean and simple. When we lived together often she would go through her stuff paring down which would encourage me to do the same. I would put a bunch of stuff in a huge sack that I intended to get rid of and set it outside my bedroom would sit and sit and I had such a hard time getting rid of it because there would be those items in the bag that although I never used or needed I just couldn't part with. Claire would wait a few weeks and then without asking just take it out to donate. She knew I needed help with that part. And funny thing once it was gone it was hard to even remember what was in the bag in the first place.

So bear with me as I begin working on simplifying my life. I think I might occasionally blog about my process or frustrations. Please feel free to share any tips or ideas you might have that could help me on my pursuit.

So what about you,what resolutions top your list for 2011?


  1. I loved those days in our greenlake house. And, I adore this new blog and design--gratitude and bright joy; it captures you perfectly!

    Now, if you ever need to get rid of something just put it in a hefty bag and leave it on the porch...I'll drive by and pick it up before you know it's gone. ;)

  2. actually claire...i'll drive by and pick it up...and then keep it! i LOVE rebekah's stuff ;)

    p.s. if you come to the swap you can just donate and not take anything home, there's no pressure to add to clutter (not that your house is cluttered, it's one of the most gorgeous i know!)

  3. I love your new blog Rebekah, and your pursuit of beauty and simplicity. :) Do keep us posted.

    And I agree, Claire is inspirational in so very many ways! Jenny had a similar de-cluttering effect on me during that one magic summer of sharing a room in college. Dan (& int'l moving) has taken me to new heights of minimalism and I always love a good purge.

    Can't wait to see how you develop the blog!


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