One of the things I love about minimalism is that I don't have to do something every day in order to enjoy minimalism. I spent the first part of this year actively working to clear out clutter; now I'm reaping the benefits of my earlier work and still enjoying minimalism.
I'm looking around right now, and the sites that bothered me earlier in the year are basically clear. Ok, I have zucchini to shred on the bar in the kitchen, and a couple of papers to take to school on the shelf by the front door, but I don't have the piles of clutter stacking up like we used to. We've created new patterns or gotten rid of the things that used to sit around. (The exception to this is the table full of LEGOs in the kitchen. I have no words for LEGO mess.)
I think I'm getting a handle on working for the shop. I have a day for shopping at the Goodwill bins, and several days for washing, pricing and inventorying the clothes I buy there. I have space to store the clothes outside the living room (thanks, decluttering!). Next week will add another level of activity, but we'll still be able to come home to a quiet, peaceful, decluttered home. Minimalist efforts will allow us to pursue the activities important to each of the four of us -- even though we'll be pursuing more and more activities as the kids are getting older (cross-country running and dancing and college classes and 4-H and piano and, oh, yeah, friends).
I know I'm not moving any more forward as a minimalist home, but I'm pursuing so much else right now that it would not be minimalist to try to minimalist my home while I'm adding so many other activities. Adding the shop and supporting the kids' activities is relationship building, and relationships are the point of minimalism -- the point is not to live in a perfect home.
I often appreciate the time I had this past year to work on minimalist-ing the house -- because it has allowed me the freedom and space to work with my mother and sister on the shop without becoming overwhelmed.
As I get my feet under me I hope to be able to streamline my home a little more, and declutter a little more. In the meantime I will be checking in, hopefully twice a week, to reflect on how minimalism is working (or not) in my life, and what I'm doing about it.