Life During Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic: Simplicity & a Minimalist Lifestyle Can Be Good for You by Terri Jones
I’ve always prided myself on how little I need. I vehemently refused to buy a microwave when they first came out, along with a flat screen TV, DVD player, e-reader or smartphone. Everyone tried to convince me that I needed all of these things, and I only relented when they were purchased for me or I was strong-armed into it.
When I started my own business, I challenged myself to live as frugally as possible, always saving leftovers, grabbing packs of Sweet ‘n Low and napkins when I went to a fast food restaurant, learning to like $5 wine from the grocery store, shopping at Goodwill and coloring my own hair, among many other cheapskate moves.
Although I haven’t had to conserve as much in recent years, I’m finding that minimalism still comes naturally to me during our current COVID-19 confinement. In the kitchen, I’m enjoying making do with what I have on hand, breading chicken with crushed-up caramel corn and fish with Durkee fried onions leftover from Thanksgiving. I've substituted mayo and cheese for cream of chicken soup in a chicken and stuffing (also left over from Thanksgiving!) casserole, as well as zealously unearthing leftovers from the freezer like buried treasure (I don’t always label them so we’ve had some interesting surprises!).
I’ve made 20 plus face masks for family, friends and medical workers, but haven’t spent a dime, emptying my large plastic bin of fabric scraps and moving onto dish towels and my Goodwill bag for items I can repurpose. I’ve almost run out store-bought glass cleaner and have found the formula online to make my own. While I usually take my dogs to a pet store for nail clipping, I’m doing it myself now. Plus, despite the fact that I have a box of hair color in the linen closet, I’ve convinced myself to let my hair go natural. Well, almost!
My minimalist lifestyle these days also extends to choices or lack thereof. Which T-shirt should I wear over one of my six identical pairs of black yoga pants? Do I read the news before or after I take a shower? At the end of the day, do I have a glass of wine or take a walk?
When a friend, who was celebrating a birthday, said she needed bacon and eggs from the store, I improvised a birthday gift with a pound of bacon out of our freezer, three eggs from our dozen and one of my handmade face masks, which I dropped in a brown paper gift bag on her front porch. (She loved it!)
Although I definitely don’t love confinement, I also don’t want life to go back to normal completely. I hope some of this simplicity sticks. It’s good for the pocketbook, but I believe it’s even better for the soul!
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