100 Thing Challenge Update: My current “stuff” number, my challenge approach + WIN your own copy!

100 Thing Challenge Update: My current “stuff” number, my challenge approach + WIN your own copy!

So here is my promised “stuff” count…just a few weeks late. Meh, who’s telling time?

My guesstimate was around 200-ish items. Which all considering, is a pretty low number already in my opinion. Considering all that I’ve gotten rid of and sold off the last year- that’s crazy less than what I’ve called my own in the past.

Total Tally? 193.

Not shabby in the stuff department. Then why do I still feel so…weighed down by it?

I know when I last posted my official commitment to the 100 Thing Challenge it sparked some ponderings on our Facebook page. Is the overall, complete objective to say “ta-da! I did it- I own 100 things! I can sacrifice and still stay alive!” ??? Since I’m just recently stepping up to the plate to kick this project off, I don’t have too many musings on what to feel or expect yet. The only thing that I believe is, it’s not really about the number. At least not 100. It’s finding your number, which, let’s get deep…is more about finding you…your happiness…your spot. Let’s leave it there. I can’t speak before I experience. Who knows, maybe my number is 192, what will be the one thing to go?! (My bet would be on Burger, dog-man chewed up Elmo today. There were tears… Rowe cried a little too).

I’m not going to give the full list of each item I own yet, but I am going to explain how I am breaking it down in categories, and the few things I am and am not including the final hurrah. My general rule is the items I consider a necessity are not going to be included as “stuff” items, and in certain situations some items as a bunch will count as one.

  • Clothes: clothing, shoes, coats, scarves, handbags, ect. I think this is the area where I still have plenty of room to scale back.
  • Kitchen Items: Includes things like Tupperware, mixing bowls, pots and pans. Basic utensils will be included as one (probably a set of 2 knives, 4 forks, 4 spoons=1). I’m not including the fridge, convection oven, or tiny stove top. We won’t have a microwave.
  • Pillows, blankets, towels, linens (I may bundle these items up a bit- such as a full bedset of sheets, pillows, and covers considered as one).
  • Personal belongings and products: Such as jewelry, makeup, hair things, hygiene things. Luckily, I own very little makeup- the beauty show (if there ever was one, ha) ended when the kid showed up, and have significantly cut back on jewelry and such.
  • Mementos, pictures, albums, decorations.
  • Books …even though I swear there are not many left!L I also need to reorganize and reprioritize a lot of my “office” items; notebooks, folders, ect.
  • Electronics: TV, computer, ipod (although I’ve had that iPod since 2005, so it might end its own life before I do anyways)
  • The unexpected items I’m including? Credit cards and bank accounts. Which currently are about ten-ish total, not including the other ten random cards in my wallet. Part of my personal challenge to myself is to shed my financial “stuff”, too.

Items I consider essential are my car, phone, and refrigerator. I’ll go out on a limb and guess many “minimalist” would challenge me saying a car and phone are not necessities in the least. I might have been able to agree pre-baby, but now with having a child the phone and car are non-negotiable in case of an emergency. The fridge? The amount of leftovers we live off around here would be much less appetizing without a place to keep them fresh.

I think my plan of action is to attack one category of stuff at a time, and maybe bite off one or two objects a week. Just call me Stuffzilla. I’ll be keeping a regular update so you can see what I’m ditching and keeping, a button on the sidebar will be added soon.

Now I’m curious, what do you think your number is? I know that’s like the deceiving “how many skittles are in the jar” game at a baby shower, but take a stab at it. I’m expecting some big numbers to pop up (in the thousands maybe?)….yes,  really. It’s surprising how fast the count gets high. If I still had a regular one bedroom furnished+decorated apartment, I’d easily hit in the mid to high hundreds. So imagine if you have a 2,000 square foot, 4 bedroom home? Wow-za.

THE GIVEAWAY: a copy of The 100 Thing Challenge! Totally shocked, right? I figured it would be fitting since this is going to be a journey shared around here for a while.

TO WIN: Comment below with you answer to the above question…that’s it! Comments close Sunday night (the 18th) at midnight.

*NOTE*You must subscribe to Treading Tiny’s blog in order to participate & find out who won (Look in the right sidebar column to sign up). Last time getting a hold of people via Facebook did not go grandly…so I’m hoping this makes it easier for me to hunt you down. 

Comments won’t show up until they have been approved… so don’t fret if you don’t see yours right away! ***If you DON”T see your within 24 hours, please contact me to make sure my spam eater didn’t spit your comment out***


WINNER: Is….Meghan! Thank you all so much for your replies, I’m so inspired by each and every one of you. Stick around for more giveaways soon!

11 Responses to 100 Thing Challenge Update: My current “stuff” number, my challenge approach + WIN your own copy!

  1. My “stuff” total is very high; I have 1,000+ books, and of everything I would get rid of, those would be the very last thing.

    Other than that, I am not particularly attached to stuff in general. When we moved from Seattle to Atlanta 12 years ago, someone back a truck up to our U-Haul trailer and stole everything that mattered: my kid’s babybook, a leather vest my dad bought my mom on their 25th anniversary, a dress designed by my g’ma when she went to the White House in the 60’s and made out of fabric my cousin had hand-dyed in India. So stuff? Meh.

    Just hard to get rid of the books. So one more would be great, especially for La Petite, who is building a tiny house as her curriculum this year and simplifying very deliberately (her blog: http://www.tinymaison.blogspot.com).

    • Kacie says:

      Books seem to be the big challenge for everyone, including me. I really had to look at my collection (which was not nearly as impressive as yours!) and access what I would use again in the future. I will still never be able to get rid of all of them, too resourceful! I’m so sorry to hear all of those precious items were taken from you, how awful. But your values and outlook are so clearly reflected in Sicily (and HoneyFern- I think I might have to move to GA when my daughter hits school-age!), who I have to tell you is such a fierce little inspiration. As a mother, she just makes me so proud to see her take such a great view on life. I’ve added her blog to my “Resources” page, and can not wait to watch her journey unfold!

  2. Meghan says:

    gosh, I don’t even WANT to know how much stuff I have right now. I am reading Tammy’s book right now and she discusses the 100 thing challenge. i really am working on cutting back and have already sold a pair of shoes and a sweater on ebay this past week! It’s a slow going process of being able to part with clothes that I don’t need/wear but the more I think about it the more I realize if I’m not wearing it than it’s just taking up space and I’m not likely to have a sudden change of heart and start wearing something I haven’t worn in years. Your blog and reading suggestions have really been helping me along in my simplifying process!

    • Kacie says:

      So proud of you Megs! I really loved Tammy’s book, I hope you do too. Everyone has a starting point, and it took me over a year to downsize the way I already have..and I still have plenty more to go (in my eyes). It’s really a mind shift change, and it all unfolds from there!

  3. Sabrina O. says:

    I would definitely estimate my stuff to come to around 2050. Mind you that includes my husband’s collection of video games and cards that span over two decades. Lately I’ve taken to going through items and every couple of weeks I take a bag or two for donation. Of course at the same time my husband buys stuff from the same store I’m donating to!

    • Kacie says:

      Darn those husbys! Boys and their toys, eh? That is wonderful you are taking regular trips to donate however, it’s exactly how I started my downsizing journey. Soon enough, I was making weekly trips and it became a habit, or honestly, an addiction! Keep at it, you will know when you hit “enough” (or so I am told!).

  4. bren says:

    Oh, dear. Can we not count craft supplies? Those are business things for me. (Well, mostly. Well… half-ly. I do need to get rid of stuff in that department.) And books counting as one thing… 400 things? I’m probably way off. I’ve been continually giving things away for years, but I fear there are a lot of little things that are still hiding from me.

    • Kacie says:

      Oh boy, I feel you! Books seems to be a tough one for everyone. It’s definitely be a sore spot for me, because I love books, and don’t see myself converting over to a “kindle” or any other digital format soon (accept I do read some e-books and such on my computer). I’m a sucker for the book smell!

      I am a mild crafter as well, so I decided to allow myself one small basket to house all my knitting materials and fabrics- but once it comes time to move into the tiny house I might have to reevaluate. I truly believe in making it work with what makes you happy, so I will never give up something I truly want just to reach a number. Don’t worry knitting needles, your not going anywhere, ha!

  5. Kelly says:

    We will soon find out what our number is! This spring my family of 5 will be moving to the country to start our new, less-consumeristic, more natural life. To do this we will be spending the first several months living out of a 24′ camper/travel trailer. With no room for extras, we are starting to pare down now. Looking around my 2400 sq foot home, I cannot believe how much “stuff” has invaded our lives!

    Our new plan only came about a few short months ago. My sister mentioned this challenge to me after I had complained to her about my household. Interested, I started learning about minimalism and tiny living. Absorbed in these new-to-me ideas, I daydreamed of a simplistic lifestyle and prioritizing my time and responsibilities. Not “more” simplistic, but SIMPLISTIC!

    Everything has happened quickly since July of this year. We found land, purchased, and have a simple plan. Now the hard part comes in. LETTING GO.

    I am a recovering pack rat, and am notorious for saving things due to my feelings. Feeling from memories that items remind me of, or bad feelings because if I ax it, I may need it in the future. Trying to get down to 500 things for my family of 5 seems so attainable, but I am entirely afraid to even begin counting. Even after a couple months of purging! Luck for me, I do not need a number. I have a set space that our necessities need to comfortably fit into, the 24 ft camper.

    But, I am not afraid or even a bit negative! We have lived in this huge home for 6 years. I have done home childcare here, as well as raised our own children and two puppies. All of the required “stuff” is ready to GO! Luckily, it is all reusable after a good clean, and can be dutious for another family.

    Thanks so much for writing and sharing! There are too few leaders in the “less is more” community.

    • Kacie says:

      Kelly, I am so excited for your families journey! It’s crazy isn’t it, how all that stuff adds up without realizing it? I always felt I did not have as much as other people I know (not in a woe-is-me sort of way, rather, literally have less STUFF), until I started counting it all up and really analyzing what would fit in my new life. Hello, stuff slap in the face 🙂

      You’ve got this! I love to hear how others, especially with children, are scaling back and taking these steps to simplify.

      If you would be interested, once you all take that big *tiny* leap into camper living, would you be interested in sharing more around here? I’d love to do a little Q&A with you to share (I’m hoping to feature a lot more of these sort of features come the new year).

      I’m rooting for you 🙂

  6. CS says:

    My number now? Not telling! What I will tell you is that it has been dwindling. My ideal/goal number … 172. That would allow me 1 item for every square foot of my dream tiny house. I, like Kacie, would also bundle similar items (linens, plates, hair accessories).

    P.S. Wondering if I have to count myself and my dog as items?

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