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When I started blogging, I decided to write a little bit about anything that came to mind to figure out what I really wanted to say that was different from what everyone else was saying. And thank you for hanging around through my wild ramblings and the whiplash I’m sure some of you suffered as I jumped from topic to topic. Through the past several months, I started looking at the posts I’ve most enjoyed writing as well as the posts you all seem to enjoy reading and I finally found myself a niche. (This isn’t to say I’ll stick to it but I’ll start moving more this direction.)

Simplifying. Frugality. Doing/using/buying less to accomplish more.

I should have seen it coming. I mean, I named my blog Rusty Basket. Using something that others might consider used or worn, long after the shiny wears off.

I often write about parenting and relationships. I see these topics as working together. See, when we simplify our relationships, they tend to be happier. When we have less clutter in our lives, less things vying for our attention, it’s easier to find happiness with those we love.

A couple quotes really resounded with me and helped me come to my focus. The first, I’ve tried to trace down the origins but it’s credited to many sources. I choose to believe it was coined during WWII but the internet will argue. Anyway, it’s something most of you have likely heard:

I’ve always loved this little rhyme. If we all did this, there would be less waste in the landfills, less debt in the homes, less discontent in the marriages. Sometimes, less really is more. Because with all of these “less”es, we get more peace, more happiness, more useful skills, more gratitude, more contentment.

The other, I just heard for the first time recently. It is by Benjamin Franklin:

Whoa huh? Think about that. Would you really care how recently you got your nails done, would you care if your car were shiny and new, would you care that the clothes you wore made your eyes look great, if no one but yourself saw any of it? How much time, energy, and money do we spend trying to impress or look good for those other people?


And so, for my New Year’s resolution (a bit late), I have decided to try to keep up with the Jones’s. Except that I am going to try to find the most frugal, most simplified Jones’s I can. (I’ll make them up if I have to.) And I’m going to try to emulate them. I’ll ask myself, “What would the Jones’s do in this situation?”  I won’t care how others see me. I will care about living the most simplified life.

Because, by simplifying everything else, you open up a lot of room for happiness.

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