Excess. What a powerful word.
I don’t know what it is about this time of year that really makes me take note of all the “excess” in my life. Maybe it’s the accumulation of new items from Christmas. Maybe it’s the excess poundage from overindulging in holiday treats. Maybe it’s the dawn of a fresh set of New Year’s resolutions. Whatever the reason, I can’t help but feel like my walls are slowly closing in on me because of too much stuff.
I wish I could say it’s just one area of my life that has excess. Excess clothes might make sense due to my profession and I so wish I could say that was the only area I’ve over-accumulated in. However, that would be a lie. As I sit here writing this blog post, there are DVDs spilling out of our DVD tub. There are jackets – multiple per person – hanging off my dining room chairs, and there are bags of candy and food lining my kitchen counter.
As I look at these items, I have conflicting feelings. On one hand, these items hold value. My girls love watching movies, a winter coat is a necessity, and we have to eat, don’t we? But it’s when we have too many of one item that I feel our “things” start to lose their value, their luster. How many DVDs have sat in our DVD tub since Travis and I got married? How many coats do I really have hanging in our coat closet? Do we really need to keep 5 lbs of candy from Christmas?
I also can’t help but think about the message I’m sending to my girls. Sadly, I hadn’t really given that much thought to the impression excess was leaving on my girls until a couple of weeks ago when Emma and I had a conversation that snapped me back to reality. Here’s how our conversation went:
“Mom, we get a lot of packages, don’t we?” – Emma Grace
“Yes babe, we sure do. I get a lot for my job, but it’s also Christmas time, which means we have a lot of boxes being delivered with presents for others.” – me
“It’s too much, mom. You have all the clothes you need. We have all the toys we need. We more things than we need.” – Emma Grace
“We do have too much. You know we give away and sell clothes and toys all the time.” – me (trying to justify my actions to myself…)
“It’s still too much, mom. We don’t need all of this stuff.” – Emma Grace
Major wake-up call, huh?
Y’all, I don’t want my kids growing up with everything and more at their fingertips. I don’t want them to grow up thinking “me” first and not thinking about others. Emma Grace is right, we have too much stuff. Too much of everything in fact. So, I hesitate to call this a resolution because I hope it is a lifestyle change, but we’re going to rid ourselves of the excess this month and all throughout the year. We hope you’ll join us in our January Clean Out Challenge, too!
(#fleurdillecleanout challenge example – 10 bathing suits too small for my girls)
January Clean Out Challenge:
Get ride of 10 items per day!
The challenge is simple, each day in January you get rid of 10 items. Before you start doing the math and think this is too daunting, let me explain myself and I think you’ll be on board. These “10 items” do not have to be big, huge items. For example, one day you might choose 10 spices you haven’t touched in 10 years. You could chose 10 t-shirts you’ve held on to since college and never wear. Maybe it’s 10 pairs of socks you don’t wear, 10 old magazines, or 10 nail polish bottles that have dried up. The goals is to just decrease the amount of excess you have.
If 10 seems daunting (it does to my husband), start with 5 items per day. I’ll be sharing my 10 items per day on my instagram stories, so I hope you’ll follow along for inspiration! If you do choose to take part in this clean out challenge, I hope you’ll share on your stories too and encourage those around you. Be sure to use #fleurdillecleanout and tag me so I can share with others!