Living Lightly

Susan Vogt on living more simply but abundantly

Browsing Posts in Days 365+

Now that we have our solar panels installed, I thought I would be so happy. I am, but the feeling is fleeting. The same thing happened after we got replacement windows, or even when I get a book from Amazon, or the perfect all purpose travel blazer. But it’s not just about stuff. Often I […]

Yea! A couple days ago our new solar panels were activated. This is probably the opposite of my recent Keep it Simple post, because it wasn’t a simple or cheap endeavor, but it was worth it. Over a year ago we started thinking about getting solar panels for our roof. We contacted an installer, got […]

In the spirit of end of the year lists, I’ve picked a dozen favorite snippets from my 2017 blog posts. This was like picking a favorite child but in my ongoing effort to save you all reading time, I forced myself to whittle my original 18 down to 12. Click on the links to get […]

I’m in a time warp. Easter was over 2 weeks ago but I’m still finishing up my Lenten resolve to prune my file cabinets. By Easter I had pruned 2 drawers of my first cabinet. (See here ) Once started, I was motivated to keep going. I have now finished the final 2 drawers of […]

My last blog entry was on the pros & cons of online shopping and how it can save time but create unnecessary waste. Here’s another conundrum for you – When does doing a small good take so much time that it’s not worth it? The culprit: a broken mixer blade The solution: Buy a replacement blade. […]

Christmas has come and gone. That means that we have gratefully received some nice gifts – often clothes. This also means that a natural consequence is the timeliness of giving away older things that are no longer needed or wanted. This is not bad, but it’s also not sacrificial giving. As I looked over the […]

December 26 is celebrated as “Boxing Day”  in some countries. The name comes from the tradition that on the day after Christmas well-to-do families would give a box of money or presents to their servants or customers. I remembered this as I was cleaning up after Christmas and was struck by the extraordinary number of cardboard […]

Lately, I’ve been having some troubling feelings connected with my latest book, Blessed By Less: Clearing Your Life of Clutter by Living Lightly. It was published almost 3 years ago and won a number of awards. I’m understandably proud of it, but I find myself feeling dispirited by not getting enough credit for it. For […]

We were robbed last week. Someone took Jim’s golf clubs out of the trunk of our car and my prescription glasses out of the front seat. Our car wasn’t locked and it was in our open garage. Still it felt like a personal violation and it takes time to replace stuff. After allowing ourselves some […]

Before you think I’ve gone over to the dark side and given up Living Lightly by acquiring 11 new items and letting go of none, I must again clarify. Our daughter will soon move back from Kenya to the USA – not to our home but certainly closer than Africa. She has a fellowship in […]

Before you canonize me as St. Minimalista for bringing only 3 new items into our home and getting rid of 71, I must clarify that 56 of the outgoing items were pens and pencils and 13 more were duplicates or older socks. Here’s how it broke down: THE MAIN EVENT: 1 new pair of shoes […]

We live in an old house. We love it but part of being old means that the window were not energy efficient. We had storm windows but they were a pain to put in and out each year. We finally made the commitment to replace all of the 100+ year old windows. It took awhile […]

I’m a little late with my bi-weekly blog but it’s planting season and the weather won’t wait. Recently a friend returned a sewing machine I had lent her about 20 years ago. This is nice but I gave the old one away because I needed a machine that could do a zigzag stitch for knits. […]

Is there a statute of limitations for hanging on to maternity clothes? The biblical stories of Sara or Elizabeth notwithstanding, I’m long past a possible pregnancy myself. I did think, however, that perhaps some day our daughter or daughter-in-law might want these clothes. I’ve finally resigned myself to letting go. What helped me make the decision was a […]

It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, we take advantage of it – Community Sponsored Hazardous Waste collection. Once or twice a year my county provides a place to take items like pesticides, paint, medications, old electronics, etc. Jim and I save these items throughout the year and take them to the collection place […]

There’s not much to say about this post, other than it continues to be very cold in my little area of the world (Ohio/Kentucky/Indiana). The temperatures have hovered around 0 Fahrenheit. Meanwhile I escaped to Lima, Peru for an international meeting. (I know, it really wasn’t fair to be dealing with balmy sunny summer weather […]

Finally, with the kids at home over Christmas I was able to get technical advice on what electronics we were storing were worth keeping and which were so obsolete they should be taken to that recycling center in the sky. A few decisions were easy but there is always the temptation to think that some […]

Giving To Those In Need In early January most states in the upper half of the USA experienced a polar vortex, i.e., some really cold weather. I had been hanging on to some extra coats that had belonged to our children for when the ones in balmy Singapore or Kenya came home for winter visits. […]

Sometimes my giveaways have to hunt for a home, so it’s a real blessing when the right home presents itself. That what happened this week when some contra dancing friends announced that they were going on a mission trip to Belize and needed old luggage in which to carry medical supplies. The luggage would be […]

For those who read last week’s blog and wondered what miscellaneous “adult stuff” I would be giving away, I’m afraid it’s rather boring – but boring with a lesson. Now that I’ve gotten rid of  the kids, here are some miscellaneous parent contributions: 2 homemade pew banners from our kid’s First Communions. Now really, by […]