minimalism, Project 333

Capsule Wardrobe Kitchen Spending Diet Bonanza

Happy New Year!

I have always been into New Years Resolutions. “This is the year”, I tell myself. There are lots of lists made and ideas drawn out and I get really excited. But, just as the stereotype goes, by February 1st it’s business as usual. BUT, I’m going to do it again and say that THIS IS THE YEAR! This is the year of getting control and of trusting my instincts. And guess what, it has nothing to do with losing weight (this has been the theme of most of my past resolutions). I’m not going into these endeavors solo. I am going into the with the plan (that I didn’t come up with), a built in community, and NUMBERS. Lots of numbers. Here are some of the numbers.

908, 4,633, 2,500, 333

The first three numbers are my credit card debt, one student loan (you don’t even want to see the other one), and a savings goal for visiting my best friend in London in June (squeeee!!). I will pay the first two off and achieve the savings goal by using The Spending Diet from the blog And Then We Saved. At this point I’ve probably read just about every post on this website. I cannot get enough. I am an impulse spender whose long term goals get clouded by instant gratification. Having less debt and saving up for this big special trip are huge motivators. I’m tracking how much I put towards each goal every month and tracking my purchases so that I can make only the essential buys each week. My brain still tells me that beer is essential (and sometimes yeah it is) though I know that’s not the case. The one thing I have found so far is that I get so excited when I get paid to pay my bills that I kind of overpay them and then I’m stuck with very little money until the next paycheck. I need to keep enough to make sure I can comfortably cover the basics and try to not get so ahead of myself. Reigning in my spending will definitely be challenging at times but the message boards on this site are active and I have supportive friends and family so I think all in all I’ll be okay.

The last number is a biggie. 333. This refers to two things, both related. First, The Capsule Wardrobe Challenge, or Project 333. That’s 3 months with 33 items of clothing, encouraging you to find your own style, have quality pieces that are versatile, and let all that other fluff fall away. I have now entered month dos (dun dun dunnn) of this challenge and I’m really liking it, though I do feel a little bored at times. Getting dressed is way easier. I have some go to outfits that I seem to gravitate towards. Even within the 33 items I’m not wearing all of them. I sort of bent the rules a bit and didn’t include outerwear or jewelry in my count mostly because Richmond weather is crazy and you can’t commit to a coat when one day it’s 40 (today) and one day it’s 74 (tomorrow). Yeah. I also have a lot of cool jewelry I got from my Gramma when she passed and my mom has given me some stuff of hers and I want to get as much use out of those things as I can. Just before I really started the challenge I sold some of my clothes to a local resale store and got myself a $33 credit that I plan on using to fill in any gaps for the Spring/Summer. I feel lighter and less overwhelmed and I notice this most of all in the mornings when I’m getting ready for work.

The other part of the 333 is the Capsule Kitchen Challenge which is super exciting to me. Same thing but with ingredients. You pick 33 things that you love eating and that is what you eat primarily for the next 3 months. At first that might sound a little restrictive but spices and seasonings aren’t part of your list so you have freedom with those. Here’s my list!:

Kale
Chicken
Salmon
Greek Yogurt (Plain)
Sweet Potatoes
Lettuce
Carrots
Broccoli
Broth
Brown Rice
Beets
Canned Tomatoes/Marinara
Cous Cous
Whole Wheat Penne Pasta
Mozzerella Cheese
Lentils
Brussels Sprouts
Spinach
Tofu
Oats
Apples
Clementines
Bananas
Wine
Kashi Granola Bars
Leeks
Pizza Dough
Eggs
Avocado
Tortillas
Coconut Milk
White Potatoes
Almonds

My goal here is to simplify my meal planning, cook more intuitively (more about this another time), and make the most of the ingredients I’ve chosen. I LOVE kale. I LOVE most things on this list. But I probably only cook with each a couple different ways. This is an opportunity to expand on how I prepare these ingredients. It’s an invitation to be creative and I don’t feel limited. I kinda feel free. I also started reading An Everlasting Meal tonight. It’s getting me really jazzed about getting into the kitchen and making the most of simple ingredients. And not over thinking or over planning. It’s also helping think of how to make the most of every resource. Tomorrow is my meal prep day so I’ll spend a couple hours chopping, making soup, roasting stuff. Then, I’m good for the week. It’s going to be great. The Facebook group is already chatty and supportive so I’m looking forward to learning from everyone and I’m enjoying reading other people’s 33 and their blogs.

I’ve never been a numbers person but right now they are inspiring me!

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