Well, we’ve just gotten past Earth Day, and now it is Downshifting Week. It’s a time to take a look at how you can simplify your life and enjoy it more.
As a parent, being with my children is important to me. That’s why I work at home, but that same business can take me away from my children and limit the time I can spend with them. So for someone like me, Downshifting Week can be a reminder to take things a little easier, especially during those hours that the children are awake.
In deciding to live a greener lifestyle, my family has done a lot of downshifting already. Some things were more financial necessities than anything, such as the decision to go to just one car for our family. But deciding to shop less (a great way to downshift) was both so that we could appreciate more what we have and to save money.
Gardening is also recommended as a way to downshift. I can strongly recommend this. We have a garden in our back yard. With the luck we’ve had this year, it probably won’t save us much money (a late frost killed most our seedlings), but I consider the benefit the children will get from seeing where food comes from more important than whether or not we save much money. And if things go well, it will have financial benefits too.
It’s definitely time, however, to go through all our STUFF and get rid of the things that aren’t being used. That frankly probably means close to half of the kids’ toys. It’s been a long time since we cleaned those out, and so many just never get played with at all or the kids have outgrown them.