Lesson 1172 – Tiny Living in a Big House – Tiny step: Holiday Battles

I started a post yesterday and then I got called away with a meeting, then a project was returned that needed immediate edits, then the kids came home from school, and then all the afternoon driving began. In short, the day got away from me.

So today I’ll put up two posts.

This first post is about living tiny in a big house.

The holidays are not kind to people who tend to collect things. Our basement is filled with tons of decorations from years past – important when the kids were little, but that are now simply waiting for me to find the time to send them off to a new home.

Of course, I would never get rid of the items that hold favorite childhood memories like the plate, cup and letter to Santa we use for his cookies.


But I have started to go through things like boxes and boxes of ornaments. The ones with meaning stay, the ones that were simply given or collected along the way (like the 1998 CVS Snowman?) we have decided to re-home.

Here’s the problem though, my kids have inherited my “give everything meaning” philosophy. Our tree is one of those very old artificial trees. We got it when we first moved into a home from a condo. While it’s served its purpose, we (I) am getting tired of digging it out each year and then spending what seems like days matching the individual branches to the correctly colored levels.

We all agree that a new tree is in our future.

But one of my sons has called “dibs” on this Christmas tree. He wants it for when he has his own home. As the one who couldn’t bear to see the tree come down each year, it’s his, he claims. A charming thought but it means that we will need to store this tree somewhere in our house for the next few years. While we store a new one.

Hardly the idea of tiny living.

And then we have the jokesters. A son (actually, it’s the very same Christmas tree guy) thought it would be funny to decorate our then bare tree with a giant porch candy cane ornament. Funny. We left it on the tree for a few days until we could get it properly decorated. Once that happened, I put the candy cane in the give-away box.


The beer can is actually an ornament from the Budweiser Brewery in our town.


The next day it was back on the tree. Three times I have tried to get rid of the candy cane and three times it has returned to the tree. “It’s now a part of our history,” I’ve been told.

It is me, fighting against a storm composed of 7 other forces.

Even if your desire is to live tiny, you still have to learn to pick your battles. From the basement I moved out two boxes of no longer used lawn ornaments … and the candy cane on the tree remains.




Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

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Filed under Living Tiny in a Big House, Uncategorized

3 responses to “Lesson 1172 – Tiny Living in a Big House – Tiny step: Holiday Battles

  1. Sounds like “Let it Go” is going to be a theme in the coming months. We just moved out of our house of 30 years. For a year prior, I yard saled, Freecycled and Craigslisted tons of stuff. People DO want a toaster that doesn’t work, if it’s free. The “kids” (29 and 30) stuff was harder. They have tiny living spaces. They each had one very pretty box full of school memories, distilled yearly from a xerox box full of school papers, artwork etc. I took many pictures of things that had meaning but frankly were in no shape to keep. It was hard letting go of some things, but we are moving now about 1,000 pounds lighter!

    • Wendy Thomas

      Barbara! Hats off to you!

      It’s an ongoing battle in our house. With 8 (almost) adults all living here, the amount of “stuff” that finds its way in is mind-boggling (especially because once it makes its way into the house, no one but me bothers to move it back out.)

      I dream of a tiny, uncluttered house someday, but for now, I’d just like to keep the living room clutter-free!

      On Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 10:44 AM, Lessons Learned from the Flock wrote: > >

  2. Mandy

    I can absolutely relate to being the only one in the house who actually gets rid of anything. My kids are age 4 and age 2, so mostly we just deal with toys and clothes… oh dear me, the clothes! Since they grow so fast at this age, we seem to constantly have “incoming” and “outgoing” clothes around. And of course since we want more kids I am saving the clothes for whenever that next kid comes along… BUT, I have gotten rid of a LOT of stuff over the last year or so, and a couple weeks ago my best friend watched my kids for a couple hours so I could go through their toys and books and de-stash.

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