30 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 2 bags
I used to enjoy food preparation. I used to cook and bake regularly. But those days seem to be behind me, at least for the moment. In 2013 I visited Turkey and some Greek islands. Eating the simple foods of those regions changed my attitude towards cooking. When I returned from that trip, I had no desire to cook. I thought my lack of enthusiasm was just a phase, but four years on I still have no desire to cook. Recently I decided it was time to minimise my cupboards, pantry and fridge.
1. No baking supplies. I cannot remember the last time I baked. It certainly has not happened in the last sixteen months of living in this apartment. My baking supplies included different types of flour, sugar, raising agents, trays, bowls, mixers and miscellanea that have just been sitting there, unused, for years. When I looked through all the perishables, I realised everything was out of date. It was time to let it all go. I live in a suburb full of delicious food options. If I ever have the craving to eat a baked thing, I’ll find it. If I ever get the desire to bake a whole tray of something, I’ll purchase these items again. It was strangely difficult to remove the baking supplies from my kitchen. The removal caused a sadness. I put the uncomfortable feelings down to accepting that my life had changed since I last baked. Anyway, I eventually realised the loss of these items is not that bad. If I ever have any feelings of loss associated with something I want to remove from my life, I remove it from sight and let it sit in storage for a while. Eventually the items lose their hold over me and I feel comfortable letting them go.
Still in boxes… But I owned them for at least a decade.
2. No meat. While I enjoy eating meat, I am not committed to consuming it on a daily basis. Historically my meat preparation has been somewhat disappointing and not particularly enjoyable. In recent months I have given up on cooking it altogether. Mine is now a meat-free fridge. I find that as I get older I don’t crave calorie rich comfort dinners on a daily basis. As I have been minimising my belongings, I have also tried to minimise my routines. I have been working on reducing the variety of items I purchase at the supermarket each week. Groceries these days consist of salad ingredients, bread, cheese and fruits. All of these ingredients are simple to prepare and delicious. Eating a cooked meal out when I feel like it, rather than cooking regularly out of habit, saves me a lot of time and energy.
Mostly cheese and veg in my fridge
3. No almost empty packets. I consider myself to be a person who does not like waste, and as such, I always hold onto foods and products until they are totally gone. I think being considerate of all resources, no matter what your budget, is a smart (and respectful) way to live. I did, however, have a bunch of almost empty packets of food that I hadn’t touched in months. I had small portions of things like couscous, arborio rice and lentils. Considering my acceptance of my waning enthusiasm for cooking, these needed to go. Please note that when I decluttered my pantry, I found homes for products that were still edible. I believe it is really important to dispose of all our unwanted things responsibly.
My food takes up two pantry shelves