I’m preparing for a trip. It’s not expensive—I’ll drive my son and myself in our small, fuel-efficient car to my mum’s house, where we’ll stay for free, eat in, walk a lot, play board games, and give each other second-hand gifts. My kid and I will purposely hang with strangers, because conversations with new people are fun, enriching, and entertaining —like interactive storybooks! I’ll leave the car in the free parking area and walk on to the ferry. I’ll meet up with a close girlfriend at a retreat centre that offers space by donation.
All this frugality means I can afford a maid!
Well, that’s not quite how I do it 🙂
I know that I love to come home to a small, simple space that is tidy and clean. So, before I head out on a trip of any length, I do the following:
- eat down all our perishables
- wash all the laundry
- wash all the dishes
- scrub the bathroom
- scrub any extras that could use the extra attention
- release anything we’re done with
- ensure every bit of recycling and garbage is out
- have our robot vacuum all the floors
- make the beds
When I set the trip out as a “reward,” my son becomes willing to release vast amounts of his collections. Today, even from our minimalist home we released 12 books, two shredders worth of paper, a large bag of toys, and a giant bag of garbage. For my part, I also washed out the freezer and fridge and emptied and vacuumed the outdoor toy box.
We’re ready for winter, ready for our vacation, and ready to return home in some weeks to a sweet, shiny, minimalist, tidy home. When I walk in, I’ll gasp with surprise and delight, just as I’ve done every time before—and just as though someone else did in fact polish it from top to bottom while I was out.
Whether in my finances or otherwise, when I allow my Present Self to attend to my Future Self, I experience the joys of the wealthy with the bonus of satisfying work. Does it get any better than this?!?
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