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Simple Challenge #11 – Double Challenge

How do your counter-tops look? I got back from vacation this week and my kitchen had some crazy times.  First all the unpacking and sorting, then all the restocking (we had nothing to eat in the house… I even had my fridge turned off to save electricity while we were gone), and Thanksgiving cooking.

However, nothing belongs on my kitchen counters and there is a special kind of sanity joy that comes from cleaned off kitchen counters.  …I might not have my life figured out or under control, but I can get my kitchen counter-tops cleaned off :)

I wanted to also clarify this past challenge based on feedback I received.  As a minimalist and focusing on simple living in this blog I am focusing on having less things – not having more organized things, or hiding things.  The point of this past challenge was for visual minimalism as well as a push to clean out extra kitchen clutter (on the counter or in cupboards where space needed to be created) that would be removed from the house for good.

An organized house is better than a disorganized house, but a simple house with less stuff is even better :) (tweet this)

Ready for a Double Challenge?

Trust me, it isn’t going to be that hard.  This week is going to be a fun week :)  By the end of the week we are going to start December, and it is one of the busiest months of the year, so this week is both easy and fun.

Part 1

Clean out your purse (or man bag or backpack).  This is one area where most people agree minimalism is best.  Only the most important things, and easily accessible.  I am against huge bags because it is to easy to let them collect things and impossible to find anything once they are full.

Part 2

We have done a lot of cleaning and hard work in the last 10 weeks.  As a second challenge to this week I want you to find a non-fiction book to read (ideally with a nice warm cup of tea).  Non-fiction reading in an area you would like to grow in.

What I have been reading –  Last week I read Graffiti (posted about it last Friday) about Alene’s work with the homeless.   I just started 4-Hour Chef by Tim Ferris.  It is crazy long and I won’t finish it this week but I love how he personifies the willingness to try and learn anything  (it is 672 pages for $4.99, killer deal).

Have fun!


  1. So I got home from having our newest bundle of joy this week to find that our 5 year old has a cold/virus of some sort (not Flu or Strep, thank goodness). So I and our tiny one have been quarantined in the bedroom while Dad and 5 yr old have had the rest of the house. They have been doing a pretty good job of keeping it cleaned up so that we don’t spread germs, but the kitchen counters definitely need to be cleared again. Hopefully once 5yo is well, later this week, I’ll get a chance to get that done. I can totally do this weeks challenges :) I wonder what book I should choose.

    • Kim Kim

      Congratulations on your newest addition to the family!

    • yes, congratulations on the little one. I had my first born in November too and it is hard just going into the flu season and all the holiday travel (and germ transportation). The plus side is that you are forced to rest and take care of the baby… where you might instead be worrying about the house or trying to clean up when your body needs a break :)

  2. Kim Kim

    WELCOME HOME! Thank you for posting on your trip, I enjoyed the posts and the pics :)

    My kitchen counters look better than ever. This is an area I really need to keep up on, its the first place you see when you walk into the front door, having a home daycare I hate my house looking cluttered when the parents come and drop off the kids. Its crazy how fast the clutter buildings up on the counters, it really does feel refreshing.

    We took a roadtrip this weekend which means my purse definetly needs a good cleaning/organizing. I don’t know how I accumulate so much junk in there. Receipts for coffee, etc. We have a garbage for that but its my purse that seems to do more collecting than anything.

    I picked up the book Wild by Cheryl Strayed, its her non-fiction story of losing herself then hiking the Pacific Crest Trail (1100 miles), alone. I’ve already started it and its amazing. I should easily be able to finish it this week.

    Hope you have a beautiful week!

    • oh that does sound like a great book! I love hiking and have read a bunch about the Appalachian trail. I have wanted to take the kids on something similar… at some point :)

  3. Elizabeth Kane Elizabeth Kane

    Cleaned out the purse yesterday, and got a few non-fiction and fiction books on my Kindle from the library. I’m thinking when I need a serious break from the holiday hoopla (and online sales) I can escape in some good stories.

    And I’m with you on the clean, cleared off kitchen counters. I do the same thing with my desk before I start working. I’ve noticed clean surfaces dramatically change my attitude when I’m in overwhelm mode.

    • I haven’t done much library borrowing on the kindle but I need to start figuring that out better. Love reading on the kindle, love the library, just need to change my habits. Glad you got away from the online sales :)

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