Simply Satisfied

“Are you simply satisfied? We live in a society of excess. Our time, minds, bodies and homes are filled to the brim with things that we often aren’t even able to enjoy – things that can distract us from what really matters in life. In our God-fearing island culture, why do we have this lust for more when God has already promised to satisfy our every desire?” -from the Simply Satisfied Women’s Day Invitation

These words ring so true. I was honored to be asked to share at a Women’s Day at our sister church in Oahu, Hi. The topic was on being simply satisfied and I was asked to share about my experience with downsizing, Airstream living, how we did it, as well as some resources and tips for simple living. Above, you will see the video that was shared at the event. Hope you enjoy! If you were at the women’s day event welcome to my blog! Here I share tips on what helps our family live a happier, healthier lifestyle. Simple living is definitely one of the ways that has helped us out. If you click on the simple living tab at the top of the page you can read more about our Airstream lifestyle there. Below you will find some of the resources that have greatly influenced our path and have helped us move towards living a simple lifestyle.

Resources

Books:

Simplify

 

Podcasts:

 

Websites:

 

Videos/Documentaries:

 

Video Transcript:

Hi, my name is Josefa Ciccarelli.  I’m so excited to be sharing our story with you on how we simplified our life. I have an incredible husband named Quinn and 2 awesome boys Nico who is 6 and Gianni who is 4. For our adventure of 2017 we decided to make some big changes: we decided to go “Tiny”

We sold our house and donated or sold most of our belongings to move our family into a 22 foot Airstream Safari Travel trailer.  We didn’t do this because we “had to” it was because we wanted to. I am going to share with you a little about why we did this and how!

Before you tell yourself, there is no way you could do something like this I have great news for you: you don’t have to do anything this dramatic to experience the peace and freedom of a simple lifestyle. If you had asked anyone that knew me before 2017 they would tell you there is no way I would have done something like this. I loved my stuff. I had boxes arriving from Amazon on the daily. This change was years in the making. About Four years ago I left my job to be a stay at home mom. The stuff we were accumulating with two kids was driving me crazy and making me feel overwhelmed.

Around the same time we took a couple financial classes that helped shape and change our goals for our future. We began to realize that all of the things we were buying affected our ability to maximize our budget and financial goals.  We re-prioritized, set up a budget we could stick to and were inspired to pay off our debt, which were our cars and student loans. We paid extra on our mortgage and began to save more aggressively for our future.

I also ended up hiring a professional organizer to help me go through one of the rooms in my house and give me a jump-start towards minimizing. I got rid of a lot, and was even able to sell some items to put towards our savings, but with kids I feel like it is a continual process…and at that time I wasn’t ready to let go of some things (like those cute skinny jeans I told myself I would fit in to one day). I have always been the type to not waste anything. So I kept things, “just in case I needed it.” This was just the beginning of our path towards minimalism.

As our family began to grow we felt like maybe it was time to start searching for our “dream home” After a few documentaries, books, several blogs, and hours of podcasts our view of possessions and what we wanted for our family had changed dramatically. We began to ask ourselves questions like Do we really NEED a bigger house? And did I really want to spend all day cleaning one? Or have my husband work long hours just to pay for one?  What if we don’t have to do it this way? What if there was another way? And that is what led us to purchasing our Airstream Travel trailer and moving our family into it.

There is so much that went into why we decided to downsize. A large part was because we were looking for a different perspective.   It was such a healthy process to evaluate all of our belongings and put them into their proper place in our lives.  One of the great questions we learned from the “Minimalist Documentary” was “Does this add value to our life?” This time I was ready to let go of a lot of my possessions. This was going to be a leap of faith, but we were ready for it, Ready to challenge ourselves to get out of our comfort zone and live even more simply.

The blessings of these changes have been beyond what we could have imagined. Last year living in the Airstream brought our family closer… literally but also in so many more ways.  We hit the road and traveled through 10 states, visited 12 national parks and created special memories that we will cherish for a lifetime.   We realized we don’t need as much as we think we do. We also realized more and more the financial benefits of living a simpler lifestyle. Instead of using our money to buy more things we can use it for the things that we are passionate about like sharing experiences together, traveling, giving more, and saving more for our future.  Without the distraction of things like TV or the daily routine of cleaning a large house we spent more quality time together and enjoyed our young boys.  We also learned to be content and joyful no matter where we live and what we have. As 2017 came to a close we prayed about a new adventure and God made it completely obvious what we should do next.

In December of 2017 we packed up a few luggage pieces, sold our Airstream and left Los Angeles to join a smaller fellowship that needed volunteers.  After much prayer and advice God completely opened doors and orchestrated our move to Maui, Hawaii. Through our process of minimizing, it made the move to Hawaii so much easier. We didn’t have a mortgage or lease or a bunch of stuff weighing us down. This allowed us to free up time to pursue this move and do something we felt called to. We moved into a small house on the island. And in this home we continue to keep it super simple and only bring things in the home that we find add value. It’s only been a few months but it has been amazing and we are excited to see what God teaches us in 2018 and beyond.

With all that being said I wanted to share some practical tips that helped me minimize and live a simpler lifestyle.

Practical tips

  1. Make a date for de-cluttering. Put it into your calendar! Realize that it is a process. And if you don’t put it in your schedule it won’t get done.
  2. Take on one space at a time! If you feel like you don’t want to tackle it alone, Grab a friend to help you or Hire someone to help you if you need help letting go.
  3. Make 4 piles. Sell, Donate, Recycle, Trash. Each thing you go through will go into one of these piles. As you go through your items ask yourself have I used this recently. Does this bring me joy? If the answer is no then you get rid of it.
  4. For clothes: Check out the blog bemorewithless.com I did the project 333 challenge on the website which lays out all of the details that I used to help me declutter and get rid of a lot of my clothes.
  5. Versatility + Quality over Quanity! This has been huge for us.  From clothes to cleaning supplies to furniture we value items that have more than one use and that are good quality.  Most of our clothing work on the trail, in the water + even at a church service.
  6. Read books, blogs, watch you tube videos, follow others on Instagram that can Inspire you towards a more simple lifestyle.
  7. And lastly Pray for God to move in your heart. Realize that things cannot fully satisfy us…only God can do that. I want to leave you with this scripture:Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:19–21 NASB). That’s an important reminder when it comes to stuff—and even money. We’re called to put our faith not in the things that fill our garages and closets (or bank accounts), but in our Creator.

If you are interested in learning more you can head over to my blog at www.naturalwellnest.com where I share more of our story as well as an entire list of all the resources + links that helped us.

Aloha and have a beautiful day!

You can also find me on Instagram @naturalwellnest

 

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