The List

Are you ready? This is my attempt at itemizing my personal belongings with the end goal of minimizing to 100. Note that this particular list will not include shared household items, such as furniture, decor, or kitchen utensils. However, my overarching Minimal Challenge will seek to minimize as many of those items as feasible in a four-person American Family. So, let’s see if I can do this … in the order in which I encounter them each day (or as close as I can imagine them).

  1. Toothbrush (And toothpaste, but I’m not counting every consumable toiletry at this point. Is soap really a personal possession? Deodorant? I’ll count the tools, but not the products.)
  2. Glasses/Contacts (they’re disposable, so does “eyewear” count as one item?)
  3. Razor (I’m going for minimalist, not tree-hugger.)
  4. Hair straightener (Absolute essential, must have. I left it at home last time I went camping and frightened small children at the grocery store.)
  5. Nail clippers and file (Because my daughter’s nail biting habit drives me to the edge of insanity.)
  6. Wardrobe–It’s one item right now. As you know, I already decimated it by greater than 90%. We’re operating on very few items right now. But not few enough to count just yet. I’ll get there, but I need to be strategic about the mix-and-match-ability. However, I will break it into categories of multiple items:
  7. casual clothes
  8. work clothes
  9. formal clothes
  10. work-out clothes–funny, I have WAY more of these than anything else, and don’t actually use them
  11. casual shoes
  12. work shoes
  13. formal shoes
  14. coats/jackets
  15. rubber boots
  16. rain coat
  17. sweatshirts
  18. pajamas
  19. unmentionables
  20. swim suit
  21. socks
  22. accessories (scarves, hats)
  23. Jewelry
  24. Watch (sans battery since 2002)
  25. iPhone (Don’t leave home without it.)
  26. Laptop for work.
  27. Laptop for play. (I could tell you why I have to have two separate laptops, but then I’d have to kill you, so it’s best that I just take the two point penalty here.)
  28. Coffee mug. (For tea. From my kids. For Mother’s Day. Love that mug.)
  29. Jelly bean dispenser. (It’s an old-fashioned gum ball machine. It sits on my desk right next to my phone. I’m sorry that it falls after Coffee mug and before breakfast. Don’t judge me.)
  30. Notepad/pen. (I do a lot of thinking on paper. I’m a visual mind-mapper, if you will. Some might call what I do doodling, but it helps me channel my creativity, so deal with it.)
  31. Reusable cold coffee cup from the coffee stand (which I no longer frequent, so I fill it with water to keep myself hydrated all day in the inferno that I call my office).
  32. Flip flops. (I could call them part of my wardrobe, but since I’ve worn them every day for the last 135 days, I think they deserve a line item of their own.)
  33. Slippers. (Same story. As soon as it gets too cold for the flops, I’ll switch to the slippers.)
  34. Backpack/computer bag. (For the days I actually have to leave my house. It’s one of those super high-functioning bags that serves as a carry-on, work bag, beach bag, and casual hiking backpack depending on why I’m leaving the house.)
  35. Purse/wallet. (There may be more than one purse in my closet. There will soon only be one.)
  36. Sunglasses. (These could use a refresh. I’m not going to lie. But it turns out that one of my ears is slightly higher than the other, so it makes finding a pair that fit quite the challenge. That’s why I’m holding out for a custom-fit Tommy Bahama pair from my optometrist. And not these convenience-store specials I’ve been sporting all summer.)
  37. Make-up. I just cleaned out my cosmetics collection and now only have the bare essentials. I should probably list them as individual items. I know they’re “consumable products” but they’re also part of me–like the hair straightener. You may not know whether I washed my hair or if I’m wearing deodorant. But you’ll know when I’ve forgotten my concealer. This number will be the make-up bag that holds the following:
  38. tinted moisturizer
  39. concealer
  40. mascara
  41. bronzer
  42. lip gloss. That’s it. Five items.
  43. Oh wait, I did keep a compact of eye shadow for when I’m feeling particularly sassy. 43.
  44. Oh yeah, and one bottle of nail polish for flip-flop season. (It’s a red by OPI called “I’m not really a waitress.” Can’t go wrong there.)
  45. Running shoes. (It’s an aspiration, OK?)
  46. Tennis racket (and associated skirts and balls)
  47. Soccer cleats and shin guards. (I keep them because I keep promising my friend I’ll play. Maybe if I give them away, I can quit lying to my friend.)
  48. Wow. I don’t know if I’m even going to make it to 50. Maybe I’m doing better than I thought. OK … Journals. (I’m a writer, so journaling is a large part of what I do. I don’t keep the old ones because I want to relive high school’s most embarrassing moments. I’m blushing right now just thinking about what is written in some of them. I keep them, because I believe that some day I’m going to write a teenage self-help book instructing young women what NOT to do when it comes to stalking that varsity football player. So for now, they are staying as comprehensive research for my future novel.)
  49. Current journal. (It gets its own line, because the secrets it contains … about the genetic deficiencies affecting the mental well-being of a whole English-American bloodline … are the makings of a whole different story.)
  50. Writers guides. (Books and magazines that inspire me to learn how to write.)
  51. Scrapbooks. (They count as one long historical account of our little family parsed into annual volumes.)
  52. Scrapbook supplies. (See previous plan to minimize an astounding number of supplies into a digital art form.)
  53. Art supplies–see aforementioned belief that I am, in fact, an artist, in spite of my lacking production of any actual art work. I’ll split them out into types of art though, so this will count as the basket that organizes said supplies:
  54. paints and brushes
  55. oil pastels
  56. charcoal pencils
  57. colored pencils
  58. art paper
  59. Digital camera. (It’s a huge part of my life, despite the three weeks it spent on top of my father-in-law’s Jeep last January. It disappeared on Christmas day and did not resurface until three wet, blustery, wintry weeks later. Good thing he’s tech savvy and was able to dry it out without damaging its electronics … or my Christmas photos. True Story.)
  60. Coastal Living magazine subscription (because I could totally write for them someday … right?)
  61. Sunset magazine subscription (or them?)
  62. Books and reference materials related to work. (I’m not sure if these should count as my personal possessions or my company’s possessions. I’m pretty sure my tax man calls them my company’s possessions. So I’ll put one item here for everything in my office that relates to work.)
  63. Honda Element (soon to be ECamper)
  64. Candles. (Another downfall, I hate to admit it.)
  65. Hmm … maybe I’m already a Minimalist and didn’t know it. Let me think of a few of the shared household items that I actually care about … like the artwork of our family by my sister-in-law.
  66. Professional photos of my children.
  67. French press (not by choice, but by necessity)
  68. Coffee grinder.
  69. Wine glasses (Let’s just be honest here for a second …)
  70. Corkscrew (I don’t think this requires any explanation.)
  71. iMac (and the entire iPhoto library)
  72. Down comforter
  73. Egyptian cotton duvet cover
  74. Therapeutic pillow (I guess technically that’s all mine.)
  75. Here we are at 75 … looks like I either need to itemize some of these “categories” of content, or go shopping. Either way, it looks like I have 25 points to use in my closet. But that’s a task for another day …

Stay with me here …


About Not-so-SuperMomma

See my previous blog at to learn about how I used to be a SuperMom ...
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2 Responses to The List

  1. Pingback: Revisiting the Shoes | The Minimal Challenge

  2. Pingback: The Centennial Post | The Minimal Challenge

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