Lessons Learned and Simplicity

IMG_3723This might be the year I finish my never-ending de-cluttering project. I have been at it since we moved to Miami 13 years ago. Yes, that is a long time, but I did have too much to get rid of. All in the pursue of Simplicity, a simpler life. It’s a long story, so bear with me.IMG_3725

In 2003, after more than 20 years in Curaçao, my husband and I made Miami our home. He came to work here and I followed. At the time, it was the thing to do, but that did not make it any easier. I did a lot of throwing away, donating, selling and packing. In the end, I had still too much because I was holding on to memories in the guise of possessions. It was difficult to just let go of them, so I brought them with us.

I have learned a lot since then. Every move we have made here has resulted in more donating and throwing away….no more selling for some reason. Since we have moved three times, you can imagine how much I have de-cluttered. Still, it has not been enough. So regularly, I go through our closets, our kitchen, our books, CDs and DVDs. I have participated in two de-clutter projects as well. I have one day every two weeks when I shred papers that are of no use anymore. I must have done some damage to my storage space, you would think. Not so fast…

IMG_1697It is true that we started with two storage cages in our first apartment building. They were full to the top, mostly with boxes that came from Curaçao, boxes our children brought to us when they moved from place to place. We now have only one storage cage, but it is full to the top!!

Having decided that we need to move on, look for a more relaxed place to live than Miami, I have started again in earnest to diminish the clutter we brought and the one we have accumulated. I kid you not, sometimes I feel our things just multiply!!

IMG_4985Now, I have learned one important lesson: this is not de-cluttering anymore…this is downsizing!!! All I have done is a preparation for this most important ritual in our lives: moving on and live in the day. Memories will be there, but our  are being weeded out. I have taken many photos  to have a record of what I am getting rid of. A less complicated home is coming soon.

IMG_4989The other lesson I have taken away from this long process is that I will downsize my way. Simplicity is not the same for everyone, each of us have our own definition. Mine is, well, simple!!! I will keep my photographs, my videos, my books, my photo albums (remember them?). They tell my story, they are my memories and in the great scheme of life, they take less space than furniture, china, glassware, silverware and other assorted items I have dragged with me for years.

It is liberating and I am enjoying it so far……of course there have been some emotional moments along the way. That is part of the process, part of what life is all about. I will keep you posted on this leg of my Simplicity journey.


  1. After moving way too many times in not enough years and ending up with my parents’ legacy of stuff …. and paying for a 10×10 storage unit for 5 years, I now live singly in a 2-bedroom apartment and the life treasures that are left fit in 4 boxes in my walk-in closet. Simplicity is the best!

    • Mercedes Mercedes says:

      Thank you for stopping by!!! Downsizing, de-cluttering my home and life is an adventure. Almost there. Have taken pictures of everything I am not keeping so I can have the memories. Nothing has been sacred and it feels great!!! No more storage, no more looking at the same things year after year because I feel I have to keep them. Simplicity is the best, indeed!!!

  2. I do wish you well with your endeavor Mercedes. I do that with each move and still I have far too much. Where are you and Frankie planning to relocate to????

    • Mercedes Mercedes says:

      Thanks, Irene!!! I know you have been doing this for years. Have no idea yet where we are going, but it will certainly be smaller than Miami and less confusing.

  3. Rosi says:

    Yes, it’s difficult emotionally however I agree with your simplicity project. Most of it is just stuff, watch the George Carlin you tube video regarding “stuff” it will make you laugh while at the same time reinforce you to continue to purge or de-clutter.


    • Mercedes Mercedes says:

      Yes, it is, but it is a necessary part of life. Going at it with a plan, leaving nothing to chance. George Carlin was always a favorite. Have all his books and have seen most of his videos.

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