Re-focusing on myself

So, it’s been almost 3 weeks of moping around and being sad about this break-up – these feeling aren’t going to go away any time soon, however, I am coming just enough out of this slump to realize that I can’t let my emotions keep me from taking care of myself.

I cancelled my gym membership and finally signed up to join a Zumba studio, which is something I’ve wanted to do since I graduated from college and no longer had dance club during the week! I don’t know what kept me from doing it before, but what better time than now to get back into the hobbies I’ve wanted to pursue in years past?

Additionally, I’ve made more moves toward my career change and am hoping this week’s interview went well! Cross your fingers for me., please!

The one goal I have at this point is to focus on MYSELF. It’s been years since I’ve actually done that and I am beginning to realize how much of myself has been lost in that time frame. It is so strange to seemingly have SO MUCH free time now, to fill up with things that I enjoy. It’s a really refreshing realization.

I should be back next week with my “What’s in my wardrobe?” post, which I’ve been meaning to write. Looks like I may actually have some time to do that over the next week or so, so keep an eye out for that one!

That’s all for now, enjoy your weekend!

“Retail Therapy”

Okay, okay, guilty as charged. I went shopping a few times over the last week to try and make myself feel better . Post break-up therapy, if you will.

Not for nothing, the task of shopping itself didn’t really help anything…HOWEVER, the pieces that I wound up buying? They make me feel like a million bucks! I am beginning to realize that many of the clothes I wound up keeping in my wardrobe before were sub-par, at best. I bought them because I thought they were things that I should wear to work, but hardly any of them really made me FEEL good about myself when I put them on, you know? The whole point of this simplified life/closet thing I am doing is quality over quantity and to keep only the pieces that make me feel GOOD!

I am happy to report that I was able to keep myself from going crazy on impulse buys (a thing that has proven to be incredibly difficult for me in the past) and really did my best to buy pieces that really reflected MY personal style, which is a thing that I have ignored for many years and am finally beginning to rediscover.

I haven’t worn EVERYTHING yet, because this is a short work week for me (I am going away Thursday through Saturday), so below are just two pictures, for now.

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This Calvin Klein dress is fabulous and it was on sale at Marshall’s ($40)! It’s compliments my figure AND it’s super comfortable. It will be great for work, weddings or any other special events that require me to dress up. Big win.
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This black and floral print tank blouse ($15) from Old Navy is super cute and, paired with two other pieces that I already own, created a great work look! (It also goes well with all of my work pants/skirts and cardigans.)

In total, I purchased 6 new items and, to make room for the new stuff, I got rid of 4 old items, all of which were torn, faded or stretched out. Those items were: 1 pair of olive green work pants with some weird, sort-of visible oil stain on the front, 1 stretched out, super casual LBD, 1 black & white striped cardigan that was just too big for me, but I had been holding on to for some reason and another casual dress that I was “keeping just in case.” (TBH, not sure what I was keeping it “in case” of, so it’s been donated, along with everything else).

Alongside the 2 pieces pictured above, I purchased the following:

  • A light blue and white striped maxi dress from Target. $34. I have never owned one of these before. It looks really great, too! Which surprised me, since I am so darn short. It can be dressed up or down and can also work well for a beach day! Hooray  for versatility! 
  • A short-sleeved, white, collared button-up shirt for work. It is a loose fit and will pair really well with both the black and the grey, pixie-style work pants from Old Navy, that I have owned for MONTHS and/or any of my jeans/shorts.
  • A pair of black skinny jeans from Target for $24 + a pair of ankle length, straight leg blue jeans from Old Navy for $34. These two pairs of jeans will replace the two ratty pairs I’ve been wearing down for YEARS. Both of those pairs had slowly succumbed to the dreaded inner-thigh wear & tear and had to be replaced. I’m sad to see them go, but they had a good run!

I am pretty impressed with myself because none of these items broke the bank and I also shopped around before purchasing anything. I actually tried everything on, which I have been guilty of avoiding in years past (why? no idea. I just did), and I m really happy with the results.

There’s no motivation quite like post-break-up motivation; that’s the undeniable truth. This whole thing has provided me the opportunity to begin rediscovering myself and MY style and I look forward to seeing how that all plays out. The goal is to re-focus on self-love, self-care and self-confidence. Baby steps.

That’s all for now! Enjoy your day!

Decluttering my closet!

Happy Friday (well…technically, it’s Saturday now…) everyone!

I came home to my package from The Container Store, waiting for me on the porch! Maybe I was a little too excited about that… on second thought… no I wasn’t. I WAS STOKED! (Is this what “adulting” is – getting super jazzed about closet organizer stuff that you got one sale? If so, I don’t hate it.)

ANYWAY, I clean my closet out often, but SOMEHOW, a huge mess always manages to recreate itself within a couple of days. Maybe I just suck at not throwing things on the floor, but that is a reality that I have learned to accept; it is a reality that looks a lot like this:

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SO, I decided to try something new…

TAAA DAAAAAHHHHHHHH!

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That right there, lovely readers – believe it or not, is 3/4 of my year-round wardrobe! I need to do laundry, so some stuff is missing, but CHECK THIS SH*T OUT!

I. AM. ELATED. Weird? Maybe to you, BUT am I ashamed that this brings me so much joy? HELL-TO-THE-NO. Clean(er) house, clear(er) mind. I’d say my Friday was pretty  productive!

I think that my next update will be a “What’s in my wardrobe?” post. I am super curious to see how many items I actually have. I have done A LOT of decluttering and donating over the last few months, so I would like to see where I am at. Please let me know if you guys would be interested in reading something like that (TBH, I’ll probably do it either way, but…) it would be nice to get some feedback!

That’s all for now! Have a lovely night!

Quick update!

Check out the new domain name! lindsliveswithless.blog 🙂 Finally, everything is cohesive!

In other news, my closet organizer stuff was delayed, so I will be getting it in the mail tomorrow. I will update you on that whole process once it’s finished, as I mentioned in my last post!

I hope that everyone had a great 4th of July!

I deleted my Facebook.

Okay, it’s Tuesday! Sorry I missed posting yesterday. I had a migraine from hell and didn’t do much all day, aside from sleeping and pounding fluids. But, I’m back now and ready to roll.

This weekend was productive! I started cleaning out my kitchen on Friday night and honestly, I was SO overwhelmed by the amount of tupperware and everything else, that it took me through Saturday to finish it all up. Here’s some before and after photos:

BEFORE – UGH

AFTER 🙂

*Not pictured – I forgot to take a photo of the inside of my cabinets. I got rid of all but 5 plastic tupperware and anything with broken lids/cracks in them. I kept all but 3 of the glass tupperware that I had*

HTG, it felt like a huge weight was lifted after that whole process was finished. It’s nice to have (and only have to worry about washing) only what I truly need.

In addition to cleaning out my kitchen stuff, I also tried to use up some of the (many) leftovers I had in my freezer, fridge and cabinets. If you saw my last post, you know that the list of stuff I still had left over after not grocery shopping for two weeks was EXTENSIVE. In an attempt to waste a whole lot less, I whipped up a few dishes Saturday-Monday, and used up a solid amount of stuff. Here’s some photos:

I also made grilled cheese, rice and beans, chocolate chia pudding and pasta with sauce. Not too shabby, for using strictly leftovers.

I did make a trip to the store last night, just for a few basics that I had run out of. I picked up one thing of fresh strawberries, 8 bananas and 2 things of unsweetened almond milk, I also grabbed a bag of frozen acai packets, because everyone raves about them and I wanted to try them out in a couple of smoothie bowls this week. It’s a short week for me because the 4th of July is tomorrow and I really only needed to come up with 3 days worth of food, so I didn’t want to buy too much. I will probably have to do a real trip next week, but that’ll make almost 3 weeks without a big trip to the store, so I’m content with that.

In other news, I deleted my Facebook yesterday. I went through, saved all of my pictures, wrote down all of the important birthdays and then opted out. I was keeping a low-key tally of how often I checked that app daily, and it was disgusting, the amount of time that I spent, falling down the “I haven’t spoken to this person in years, but I’m curious” rabbit hole(s). The whole point of this #sldmchallenge is to create more time for myself and to start getting (more) in the habit of using my free time more productively. Having Facebook totally goes against all of that, and I decided that it was time to let that shit go. It was weird, deleting it off of my phone. My account is “disabled” for 14 days, before the actual deleting will happen, which…why? I thought that was a bit much, but the creators of that platform must be fully aware of the fact that the temptation is real  for people to sign back in, within that first, two-week period. I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t true, but I am doing my best to resist. It’s weird, because I joined that platform way back in 2008 or 2009, when it first came out, so over a decade of my life was cataloged there. Kind of creepy and kind of sickening to think about. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off of my shoulders, thus proving to me that social media has a strong effect on everyone and everything. I still have my Instagram account and obviously, this blog, but that’s it. That account is for documentation purposes only, for this #SLDMchallenge. It helps me document my efforts and my progress. If you’re interested in following me on this journey, you can search @lindsliveswithless and hit follow.

20180701_1405037732112231459660449.jpgI donated EVEN MORE clothing this weekend too. I ordered a clean out bag from #ThredUp, which is an online consignment store that will buy your new/gently used clothing. ThredUp* allows you to choose to receive a pay out for the items that you send in OR to donate whatever amount those items are worth to one of the charities below:

Big Brother Big Sister Foundation:  www.bbbsfoundation.org
Feeding America:  http://www.feedingamerica.org/
National Head Start Association:  https://www.nhsa.org/
Girls, Inc.: girlsinc.org
Help a Mother Out: helpamotherout.org
Wardrobe for Opportunity:  wardrobe.org

I think that using ThredUp is a great way to give back. Check out http://www.thredup.com for more information. The clean out bag is free and they send it to you with with pre-paid postage, so you do not have to pay to mail it back to them either. If you choose the pay out, you can select to be reimbursed via PayPal, or opt for store credit, to use on their online shop. If you choose to donate, once your bag is recieved, you will get an email listing the total amount donated to the charity that you chose. *I am not affiliated with ThredUp, I just think it’s an awesome thing!*

Additionally, I ordered some closet organization stuff (which was on SUPER SALE from The container Store!) last week, and it should be delivered by Thursday. I’ll post some before and after pictures of my closet, once I’ve completed that project.

Tomorrow is the 4th of July, so I will be as far away from my computer as possible, enjoying some time with family & friends! Hopefully you all can find some time to do the same! I’ll be back at you with another post by the end of the week. That’s all for now!

 

I haven’t gone grocery shopping in 2 weeks!

Good morning, happy Friday & happy heatwave, to anyone in the Massachusetts/New England area right now. I feel like I’m melting.

Fun fact: for the last 2 days for sure, I’ve basically been living off of smoothie bowls, which I’ve recently become a huge fan of and can’t figure out why I never made them before, because they are SO simple AND they are a great way to use up leftover ingredients! Plus, they look pretty AF and keep me cool – which is super important, especially on gross, humid days, because I have MS and need to keep my core temperature down. (Not to mention all of the super foods that you can stack on top of these bad boys!)

Anyway, as you may have noticed from the title of this post, it’s been about 2 weeks since I’ve had to do any grocery shopping. I have literally been living off of leftovers and free food from work for 2 weeks. I usually only spend about $50/week on groceries, but even still, that means I have saved myself about $100 AND I still have more than enough food left to get me through next week! (Though, I am starting to run low on almond milk – so I’ll probably have to pick some up). Pretty crazy, the amount of stuff that I had in my freezer and pantry. There is literally no excuse, aside from pure laziness, that has kept me from using up all of the stuff I’ve apparently been stockpiling. really made me reconsider my spending habits even further. (I was spending WAAAYYYY more than necessary. It actually kind of makes me sick to think about, TBH)

Also, I’m not staring at my cabinets/fridge right now because I’m at work, but from memory, as of last night, here’s a list of what I STILL have left (not counting basics like nutritional yeast, spices, flour, oil, etc. because I am not running short on any of that):

  • 8 oz quinoa
  • 16 oz green lentils
  • 1 liter of almond milk
  • 8 oz jar of almond butter
  • 1/2 bag of sliced almonds
  • 1/2 bag of chia seeds
  • 1/2 a (giant) bag of frozen berries & chopped kale (mixed)
  • < 1/4 bag frozen spinach
  • < 1/4 bag of PB powder
  • 1 dozen eggs
  • < 8 oz of cacao nibs
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 jar pre-made Arrabiata sauce
  • < 1/4 bag each of frozen peppers & onions
  • 1 bag each of steamer-bag broccoli and asparagas
  • 1 lb of penne
  • 1/2 a (giant) bag of frozen broccoli, cauliflower and carrots (mixed)
  • 1/4 loaf of whole grain bread
  • 1 bag chocolate plant-based protein powder
  • 2 sandwich-sized bags full of chopped, frozen bananas
  • 3 fresh bananas
  • 10 oz steel cut oats
  • 2 lbs of frozen haddock
  • 1/2 bag frozen strawberries
  • 6-8 granola bars
  • < 8 oz coconut oil
  • < 5 oz canola oil
  • (2) 15 oz cans of Chickpeas
  • 16 oz brown rice
  • 1 lb of chicken breasts
  • 1 can black beans
  • 16+ oz veggie broth
  • 2 slices of American cheese
  • 2 cans of tuna
  • 12 oz frozen, quinoa salad (from the grad party in NY last weekend)
  • a bunch of condiments
  • 16+ single serving packages of Hummus
  • 3 bottles of kombucha
  • 20 green tea bags
  • 4 oz Matcha latte mix (powdered)
  • 6 oz ground coffee

That’s all that I can remember right now, but DAMN, talk about excess stuff. I have quite a few recipes in mind that I intend to whip up over the next week, to use up all of that stuff. I’m not going to go shopping again until I use the majority of that because honestly, it’s just not necessary. I’ll post updates on that process as it happens. Who knows, maybe it’ll spark some inspo for all of you to try something similar!

Also on the agenda for the weekend (because I may as well do it all at once), de-cluttering the rest of my kitchen! I’m going to go through all of my pots, pans, plates, cups, etc. and just create a donation pile for Goodwill with the excess. I don’t really have a lot of usable space in my kitchen as it is, so it’ll be good to clear out the stuff that I don’t need.

I think that’s it for now. Enjoy the sun while it’s here and spend some time at the beach for me! Enjoy your weekend!

Hump Day Update

Happy Wednesday everyone!

The next step in the process of this whole #SLDMchallenge for me is going to be cleaning out the clutter from my kitchen. My cabinets are overflowing with coffee mugs and glasses that I never use, so that’s next on the list. I plan to bring whatever I clear out to Goodwill, as everything is in decent condition and I am only getting rid of it to free up some space. I’ll post pictures of that process once I get to it this week.

I recently learned that the park near my work is hosting free exercise and yoga classes 5 days a week (M-F) through August 31st, so I will definitely be taking advantage of those! Looking forward to it too. It’s been far too long since I’ve broken out my yoga mat and I miss it so much.

In other news, I’m getting used to the less-is-more concept. I’ve worn the same pair of pants to work for two days in a row and just alternated tops and cardigans. It’s worked out well, which is great, because I honestly didn’t have time to get to the laundromat this past weekend. No one has noticed. I get it now. I don’t need 6 pairs of work pants, 2 or 3 work just as well.

I did not go grocery shopping over the weekend because I planned my meal prep, or lack-there-of, around work. Lunch has been delivered by clients every day this week so far and today, there is a tenant event, where lunch is provided. This doesn’t happen often, but when it does, I make sure to account for it. Though lunch has been provided, that still leaves breakfast and dinner + snacks, for which I’ve planned accordingly, by using up what’s in my cabinets and any leftovers from the weekend, which I had frozen for future use (inclusive of a large container full of quinoa salad that I intend to use for lunches for Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I don’t have to grocery shop again until Sunday and nothing will be wasted!

All of that being said, only one question remains: WHY didn’t I make more of an effort to do this kind of stuff sooner? I could have saved myself so much time/money! The more you know. It sounds SO simple but let’s be honest, it’s no secret that many of these SIMPLE AF money/time saving habits have been replaced by “CONVENIENCE.” It’s just a fact of the times; Amazon and GrubHub, for example, are all about effortless ordering… for almost anything that you can think of – but looking back at it all now, I feel so silly for falling into similar habits. Adopting this lifestyle, slowly but surely, has already taught me so much. It’s not about having the least, it’s all about having just enough