Category Archives: Minimalism

5 Things To Do For Free

The day to day drone of media marketing can be a daunting maze of ‘buy me’, ‘sale now’, ‘discount here!’ It seems like advertisements are constantly bombarding to get you to buy anything, at any time of day.

It is good to take time to remind yourself, that everything you are, and everything you have is ok. It is also good to remember your dollar is a vote towards the life you want to live, and the community which you want to live in, so by not spending, that shows you value your bottom line. Happiness doesn’t always have to be inspired by a purchase, and a purchase definitely should have any control over the way you live.

With this in mind, I have collected 5 things to do without spending a dime. Leave the wallet at home, no need to grab any spare change, everything on my list is for you to do on your own, no transaction necessary!IMG_5298.jpg

First up is to shop your wardrobe. We have all heard the phrase about retail therapy. And while you might be saving up for the special something in the store, you do not need to fill your weekends with endless shopping trips for random objects. One of my favorite things to do is dive into my wardrobe and start mixing and matching. The hours pass brilliantly as you try on old favorites, play with different combinations, and have some fun dressing up.

 

The second task on the list is to take a book. I suggest a proper book, so no online screens where any submissive adverts can slip through. Just you doing you with some analog entertainment. I keep my reading material on constant rotation by frequenting my local library.

IMG_5345.jpg

IMG_5362.jpg

Third to do is the ever classic, exercise! So many times I fall into the trap of wishing I had the trendy gym membership or browsing athletic equipment for the newest props, but actually, all of that is just bogus! You can get your workout without any props required. Plus, we all know that endorphins make you happy!

IMG_5366.jpgNext up, and one of my favorites, is to go on a photo mission. Originally I heard about this kind of activity through watching Youtube and people vlogging about ‘Instagram Missions’, but whether you post the picture to share or keep it for yourself, it is a great activity. Take the opportunity as an excuse to get outside and explore your neighborhood. No matter if you are using your phone, a DSLR, point and shoot, or just nostalgic for some film photographs, this is a classic activity. Enjoy your life while searching for those moments of joy to capture forever in a photograph.

 

IMG_5398.jpg

Similar to the previous tip, the fourth is on the creative side of life. Take a journal and draw something, or make a list if you’re like me and that gives you thrills. Even if the list is for groceries or next seasons wishlist for your closet, taking the time to be conscious about what you consume can help alleviate some of the anxieties from spending.

IMG_5449.jpg

 

Last on the list of freebies is to take a walk with a friend. Spending quality time with someone is one of those faithful and true activities that money can’t compete with. When life feels daunting with external messages and advertising trying to influence your every move, some one on one time could be just the trick to escape that toxic environment.

IMG_5474.jpgAs I created this list and then lived it on a Saturday afternoon, I spend the day listening to a new, and favorite, album by Troye Sivan. So a bonus tip for all of you reading is to make a playlist. Explore new music, or dig deep into the archives to pull out some of the old favorites. Incorporate this tip with any of the previously listed activies.

However, you chose to spend your time, keep in mind it doesn’t require you to spend any money at all! So maybe you spent a little too much money on vacation last month, and you’re trying to save this month. Maybe you want to incorporate this routine into your weekly schedule, say a ‘Spend-less Sunday, that is perfect too. The point of the matter is money can buy things like shelter and nutrition, but you have the power to create your own entertainment and happiness.

Travel Essentials

This week I am abroad on a solo journey around Reykjavík Iceland. So while I will share more detail about the city and my journey later with you on here, for now, I want to focus on my packing essentials. This trip is a seven-day expedition and without getting too cocky I feel this is my best packing job to date! When I arrived on Tuesday, the winds and rain were unlike anything I have ever experienced whilst living in the Nordic region. Much to my astonishment, I planned perfectly with exactly the right apparel to defend myself against the climate.


Some of my favorites with me on this trip include my Rains jacket for protection against wind and water. I also have my Lululemon jacket and merino wool sweater. These two together make just about any cold to freezing temperature a pleasurable experience. Also, in the essence of keeping things light, I only brought two journals and book for some paperback entertainment.


I am halfway through my trip and I could not be more pleased with how well things are going. As far as preparation is concerned, I did very little just to be sure spontaneity could be an option along the way. My best tip to share with you would be one, check the weather and prepare! And two, be honest with yourself. I am not the type to do a massive amount of wardrobe changes. So I know that I am going to wear a variation of the same outfit every day to keep mornings easy, packing light, and personal management simple. So if you’re traveling soon or planning to come to the great country of Iceland, I hope this has helped.
-xx

Bee’s Wrap

IMG_4279.jpg

This week I want to share with you all my new favorite sustainable swap! This new piece is something I have been eyeing for months at the whole foods stores and on Instagram. It did feel a bit pricey, to begin with, but since deli culture is such a big part of my life it seemed appropriate to invest. I am so excited to keep this sustainable wrap on hand versus using the single-use crinkle plastic and paper bags provided at the stores.

IMG_4285.jpg

It is amazing how a little bit of quality can go a long way. Taking a moment to admire the beauty of this product, I am so obsessed with design. The fragrance of the beeswax is also a lovely addition making the moment all the more rewarding in taking produce to-go!

IMG_4304.jpg

As picnic season is upon us in Helsinki, I am beyond thrilled to have this little tool in my bag at all times in case of spontaneous meals outdoors. Incorporating sustainable options is so simple and only requires the discipline to be prepared. A small task when you make your sustainable supplies such a joy to keep at hand.

IMG_4330.jpg

If you want to know more about the brand, follow Bee’s Wrap on Instagram or check out their website here. I will be honest with you, this product had me so excited I bought a 3-pack for my mom for Mothers Day. There are loads of other products similar to this brand, and to be honest any of them would be a great step towards using less plastic. My mission is to cultivate habits that depend on sustainability and establish a proactive attitude towards making the better decision towards avoiding single-use products.
-xx

SaveSave

Sustain Yearly Lifestyle Magazine

This week I received a long-awaited investment. The Sustain Yearly magazine created by a few lovely ladies in Denmark finally arrived and I am beyond thrilled to own this beautiful piece of literature.

IMG_4126.jpg

After learning about the Sustain Daily movement a couple months ago, it did not take long before I was completely and utterly enthralled by everything their Danish team is doing. This magazine encompasses a kind and honest approach to real-world problems being tackled by beauty and elegance. Just like the title describes, each page goes through articles, recipes, and interviews to get you through a full calendar year of sustainable and ethical choices.

IMG_4134.jpg

SaveTHe This the first publication made available in English to an international audience. Originally the concept evolved in Danish but quickly grew in popularity and has now officially launched their first annual edition.

IMG_4144.jpg

I have taken the time to savor each page, article, and image. Unlike most things in 2018 that are consumed at rapid rates and praised for binging, this little beauty is my new coffee table book for the next year. The edition going through all four seasons with guides to sustainable living, recipes, and Nordic lifestyle.

IMG_4123.jpg

The opportunity is still available for you to get your magazine here. Unfortunately, the content is predominately in Danish, but with a little help from technology, it is simple to keep up with all the latest news.

-xx

Spring Cleaning

This week I want to inspire you to get started with your spring cleaning. Cleaning is one of my favorite things, second to organizing! It takes an objective mind and a disciplined approach to sustain, but a little organization and the occasional tidy can go a long way.

IMG_3741.jpg

One way to do this is a 10 Minute Tidy. This is a trick my friend told me about when she would nanny for small children. If a kid can do a 10 Minute Tidy, then so can an adult. You have time, you can do it today. Set a timer on your phone and be amazed at how much you can accomplish in a simple moment dedicated to cleaning up your space.

IMG_3738.jpg

If that’s too much, another way would be to stop what you’re doing (yeah stop reading this post) and start cleaning everything that’s around you. Simply be where you are if it is your desk, your couch, your bedside table, or even your car. If you’re in your car please drive responsibly. All you have to do at this point is to tidy everything around you. Remove trash, organize objects, and find some method to your madness.

IMG_3751.jpg

Also, a way to improve the home is giving it a good purge. Without taking on more than you can handle, pick one category or area. Clothes, papers, desks, surfaces, plastics, or kitchen are all good themes to start. Pick one, spend some time just getting deep into your things, and decide what is necessary, temporary, or unnecessary. Collect what you don’t want or need, and turn around to recycle or donate them, immediately! This last step is critical. All too often we get halfway through projects and don’t finish the entire task.

IMG_3750.jpg

My final tip is to invest in an organized home. This doesn’t mean you have to go to get generic plastic tubs, but simply find a routine that works for you. For me, standard paper boxes are a perfect way to store all things big and small. At all costs, I avoid a junk drawer. These spaces, no matter how small, are the black hole of a home.

May everything in your home is beautiful, functional, rather at best, both!

Zero Waste Cleaning

So some of you may know that my new year’s resolution was to start making steps towards a zero-waste lifestyle. This has been an interesting resolution because unlike previous goals, this transition has pushed me to rethink almost every aspect of my life. The original concept was developed for businesses to be less linear and more circular with production. Now, people are taking action into their own hands, and homes, to become more conscious consumers and users.

It is nearly impossible to stop all waste in a single moment. It takes time, practice, research, and discipline. Fortunately, the more you educate yourself, the better you are at developing these skills. The switch is simple in my opinion, but it requires a dozen tiny changes to your daily life.

IMG_3641.jpg

 The first image above and one of my favorite substitues to plastic, it is a dish scrubber. It is a beautiful wooden design, with only small metal pieces of hardware to hold it together. I also use a bar of soap versus a plastic soap dispenser to clean my hands before and after cooking.

IMG_3644.jpg

The second switch is package free beauty products. After waiting for certian items to products to go empty, I switched to purchasing package free items from Lush. Another aspect to zero waste is slow shopping. Do not purchase items for the sake of buying it, wait for the need to arise and then make a new more concious investment. After trying a few of these I may never go back to the packaged items, they are just that good!

From left to right, deodorant, hair mask, and facial cleanser.

IMG_3637.jpg

A great switch for me has been the wooden toothbrush. I really enjoy this brand and even though it does have a little packaging to get from production to your home, it is all 100% recyclable. At first, I doubted the durability of a biodegradable brush, and really cringed to think about paying 7euros or more at the local organic store. But after waiting for a sale, and later receiving a couple as gifts, I am fully stocked for the next year or more! Seriously, these brushes are amazing. Unlike plastic brushes which lose strength, the Humble brush has stood the test. As for someone who has always had a difficult relationship with dental care, this is huge upgrade!

IMG_3651.jpg

Lastly are the small reusable produce bags.. In many grocers, it is required that the customer weigh the items first before checking out. Instead of grabbing a cheap plastic bag, why not make the easiest switch ever to these little mesh pouches. Add the price sticker on the tag and off you go, back home to make yourself a lovely meal, with little to no waste involved.

Now as a disclaimer, I am not perfect, and my home and lifestyle still have a long ways to go before being 100% zero waste, or even 50%. I will say these small changes have made a huge shift in my motivation. Even with a couple small changes, I feel more conscious, more proactive, and enjoy the smaller details of my routines. So, now is the time I will encourage you to make the switch. Next time you are in need of a plastic object, reconsider and invest in a more sustainable option.

-xx

Capsule Wardrobe

It is -19c outside with the wind chill so today I am getting cozy in my closet. I wanted to share some of my thoughts on shopping, style, and wardrobe investments. As someone who pushes to live more consciously, step one is all about what is in the closet!

IMG_3465.jpg

I have had a “basic wardrobe dream” since I was 17 years old. A collection of perfect timeless essentials that would get me through all of life’s events. It is hard to determine where this interest started, maybe it was watching my older sister grapple with what to wear, maybe it was my father bragging about having the same windbreaker for a decade. No matter the origin of my interest, the seed grew as I got older to be a full passion. Now, with Capsule Wardrobes, #30wear, and buying fairtrade it is easy to live and dress consciously.

IMG_3457.jpg

I do not identify my current closet as a capsule wardrobe, but by all definitions, I think it fits. Two factors helped me attain such a minimal closet. The first was moving abroad in 2015. This transition forced me to pack all my things into one suitcase, and everything else was donated. The second factor is my mentality. I have always been attracted to this minimal style. I believe less is more. My closet is living with me, so once a month or more I clean it out. Also, when you live with less, sometimes it is worth your while to pay more. Investing in quality over quantity will last years instead of buying for a single season is a huge game changer.

IMG_3460.jpg

In the future, I would like to deconstruct my closet and share everything with Y’all. For now, I will keep things light and avoid any ominous threats about fast fashion or maximalism. With the temperature steadily under -10c for the foreseeable forecast, my ensemble will strictly be layers, sweaters, and thermals!

IMG_3485.jpg

-xx