Clean(er) Living


For a little less than two years now, I have been feeling a strong pull towards less.

Less stuff.

Less junk.

Less mess.

In my heart, in my mind, in my house, and in my body.

Right now it seems like minimalism and more natural ways of living are very trendy. And while this might be (is) true, I think it's a good trend. Not everything created in a lab is inherently bad (hello, modern medicine!) but - for the most part - it seems to benefit everyone when we get back to basics...when we waste less, use less, and care a little more.

It has taken a lot of time and reading, some money, and more patience than I currently possess, but we are slowly moving in the direction of a simpler life. Pierce doesn't feel quite as excited about some of these changes as I do, but he is willing to try them. So I call that a win. #marriage

Over the next few weeks and months, I'm gonna be sharing how we're making the transition from more to less. I feel very much like a baby learning to take her first steps in this arena, and I hope you'll bear with me. It's not my intention to say I know everything about minimalism or natural living; I just want to document how we're learning to embrace both and look at our lives a little differently than we have in the past.

For now, here's a short summary of some of the changes we've made recently.
  • Food
I've gone back and forth about what to include and what to remove from my diet. I completed a Whole30 last year, which drastically shifted how I feel and think about food, and I know now what my triggers are. But I'm currently hovering somewhere between gluten + dairy-free and "Give me that donut right now". Some days are great. Some days are not. Pierce will eat whatever, and he enjoys a lot of the cleaner meals I make, but he's a sugar fiend. I confess that having sweets in the house makes it hard for me to say no. Still, I have a new awareness about food and it has given me the wisdom I need to make better choices, even if I don't always ACT on said wisdom.
  • Home
I've dabbled in essential oils since Lucy was born, but let's face it: making the switch to nothing but oil-based products is an EXPENSIVE one. This is true of any major change in life. It's often best to start small and do things a little bit at a time. I think it's wonderful so many families have found a way to earn income selling Young Living or doTerra, but when I started using oils, I just wanted to find the ones that were right for our needs and get to using them. I've done a lot of reading on therapeutic grade oils, and I've learned that there are other equally wonderful brands out there, some of which are far more affordable than YL or doTerra. In our home, we have a few YL samples in addition to our Aroma Appeal and Eden's Garden oils. I don't know much about Aroma Appeal, as they were a gift from my mother-in-law, but Eden's Garden is definitely a favorite. Their Four Thieves blend is comparable to YL's and it's about a third of the price. Currently, we're using our oils in homemade cleaning products, washing detergent, body wash, and sometimes for diffusing.
  • Clothing
I know what I feel good in and I know what fits my body type. I also know that I don't want to look in my closet and see tons of things I never wear. Pierce and I purged our house recently of all the extra stuff we don't need or use, and it's an on-going process. Typically, I shop at Goodwill or consignment stores so I can save money and create less waste, but it's always a battle when I step into Target not to go straight for the clothing section. Still, these days my wardrobe finally feels like something I love, not something that owns me.

  • Makeup
Oh, geez. Making changes in my makeup routine has been FUN, let me tell you. Have you ever been on the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep database? You should. It will list and rate every ingredient in every makeup or skincare product you own, and then give that product an overall rating, ranging from 1 (green and happy, baby!) to 10 (cancer-causing mascara of death). It's a rabbit hole, and it can be frustrating to find out some of your beloved makeup is actually causing you harm, but it has helped me SO much. Not only have I been given the information I need to avoid certain products, I've also been able to shop smarter and discover new brands I might never have picked up before. 

As I said, I plan on posting about these changes in more detail in the coming weeks. A lifestyle blogger I am not, and there are some other wonderful bloggers who are already talking about this kind of stuff. But I like to write about what I love and what interests me, and living a clean(er) life certainly falls into that category. Here's hoping I won't bore you to death.

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