We have a lot of crazy ideas. Crazy is a relative term for us however. What is crazy to most normal people is sensible to us.
- Normal people say you have to own a house, and you’d be crazy to sell it to rent an apartment.
- Normal people buy lots of stuff to fill their houses and to impress their peers, and you’d be crazy to scale back.
- Normal people say you drive your car to work, and you’d be crazy to bike to work.
- Normal people say you have to keep your family surname, and you’d be crazy to change it.
We don’t have to do all those things. In fact some of those things aren’t even the best solution for all people. We are all different and we all have different ideas of how to live a life. To us, these crazy ideas are sensible, because they allow us to live a better life.
We’ve been Rethinking our Dreams, and rethinking the ideas of “normal” that society dictates to us. As we progress we come up with more Crazy Ideas.
What’s even crazier is that we’ve been taking action to implement these Crazy Ideas.
1. Crazy Idea #1 – Sell our House and Rent an Apartment Completed
2. Crazy Idea #2 – Purge our Stuff and Become Minimalists Completed and Ongoing
3. Crazy Idea #3 – Get Fit by Rethinking Fitness Tried, Succeeded for a Time, and then Abandoned
4. Crazy Idea #4 – Change our family surname (last name) Completed
5. Crazy Idea #5 – Commute to Work by Bicycle Did it for a Year
6. Crazy Idea #6 – Transition to Self Employment Work in Progress
After writing about all the crazy stuff we were doing, I wanted to hear from others that were rethinking their own dreams in some form or fashion. And with that “Rethinking the Dream Chronicles” was born. In this feature series I share stories of people that are rethinking their dreams, are downsizing, going minimalist, or doing things that are slightly outside of normal.
1. Rethinking the Dream Chornicles
Not everything we do is so crazy. We also have some more normal things, like family issues, cell phone struggles, and fun stuff like adventures and travel.
1. Toxic Grandparents
2. Cell Phones
3. Activities, Adventures, and Travel
Crazy Idea #1 – Sell our House and Rent an Apartment
After owning our house for ten years we began feeling like the house was an anchor holding us down. It sucked up all our money in the way of mortgage, insurance, utilities, a long commute, maintenance, and upkeep. It sucked up our time with weekly upkeep, cleaning, and maintenance. These links will take you through our home selling saga.
- Rethinking the American Dream
- Sharing our Vision of Freedom with our Parents
- Sharing our Vision of Freedom with our Parents – part 2
- Property Taxes Equivalent to Two Months’ Rent
- I’m Scared
- Fear Turns to Frustration
- Looking at Options: Finding Hidden Savings in our House
- We Listed Our House Today!
- Am I a Big Cry Baby?
- Our First House Showing
- Showing the House Means Keeping it Clean
- Waiting for the House to Sell is Tough
- Marketing our House – Helping our Realtor Sell our House
- Another Cancelled Showing
- We Sold Our House!
- We Found an Apartment
- Preparing for the Move
- Lease Signing Day
- Moving Day
- What We Will Miss about Living in a House
- No Longer Afraid of the Dark
- First Day at a New School
- The Cost of Packaging and Moving
- One Month after Selling our House and Moving into an Apartment
- Is This a Good Time to Sell a House?
- Renters Are Not Losers
- Your Standards are Limiting Your Possibilities
- Feeling Like a Tree
- Two Key Benefits of Moving from a House to an Apartment
- Moving to a New Apartment
- Moving to Our New Apartment
- The Worry of Home Ownership
- Expenses of Home Ownership vs. Renting – Some Real Life Examples
Crazy Idea #2 – Purge our Stuff and Become Minimalists
In order to move from a 4 bedroom house to a 2 bedroom apartment we had to downsize our stuff. That was the beginning of a greater goal to live with less. It wasn’t just our house that was acting as an anchor, our stuff was also holding us down. Stuff can sap time and energy in the form of sorting, cleaning, storing, and finding lost things in a pile of too much stuff.
We went through a big purge and several mini purges to downsize our stuff before selling our house and moving into an apartment. Our purge posts are very popular, so I’m featuring an index of our Big Purge posts on their own dedicated page.
Minimalism and Decluttering
- Minimalist Superpowers: My Clutter Sense is Tingling
- The Most Memorable Things in Life
- Just Say No to Free
- Removing the TV from the Bedroom
- Extreme Minimalism vs. Balanced Minimalism
- Why Declutter, Purge, and Downsize?
- Using the Junk while the Good Stuff is Stored Away
- A Minimalist Keychain – How Many Keys are on your Keychain?
- Minimalist Communications Series – Home Phone vs. Cell Phone
- Minimalist Communication Series – Cell Phones: Dumb Phones vs. Smart Phones
- 61 T-Shirts
- What is Normal?
- Freedom to Travel and Freedom to Do for Others
- Feeling Poor on $100,000 per Year
- Splitting Meals to Save Money… and Calories
- Does Minimalism Equal Frugality?
- Would You Pay 100 Dollars for a Trash Can?
- Minimalist Computers
- Where Do You Hide Your Clutter?
- Breaking Up with Stuff: The Series
- Breaking Up with Stuff Series: The Automobile
- Breaking Up with Stuff Series: Magazines
- Avoiding the Best to Settle for Mediocre
- Wash Your Bowl
- The 50/30/20 Budget
- The 50/30/20 Budget Challenge (great comments on this post)
- 50/30/20 Budget Challenge Winner
- Breaking up with Stuff – Tools
- Quality Over Quantity
- How to Declutter Your Bookcase
- Minimalism Applied to Diet
- Breaking Up with Stuff Series: Dumping the spare parts and breaking up with the phrase I might need it one day
- Tax Free Weekend – Don’t be Fooled
- Apparently I’m Not a Normal Employee
- Buying and Owning Things Going Out of Style
- The Claw – A Lesson in Experience of Stuff
- A Child’s Bedroom Purge
- Thanksgiving in a Small Apartment
- Thanksgiving Success in a Small Apartment
- Downsize your Christmas Tree
- A Funny Thing Happened After My Downsize your Christmas Tree Post
- Financial Trouble on a Six Figure Salary
- Four Tips to Keep Your Pantry Clutter-Free
- Clutter Attack – How Do You Keep Your Home in Order
- Clutter Attack – Solutions from our Readers
- Divide and Conquer to Defeat Clutter
- Tag Team Closet Decluttering
- Decluttering Sentimental Items (aka Sentimental Clutter)
- Eliminate Your Attachment to Stuff
- Does TV Trump Decluttering (and everything else)
- Birthday Parties for Minimalists – 7 Options to Curb Gift Induced Clutter (plus great tips from readers in the comments section)
- Is Clutter Your Security Blanket
- Minimalism – What Does It Mean to You?
- Four Types of Gift Givers and How to Handle Unwanted Gifts
- Minimalist Furniture
Crazy Idea #3 – Get Fit by Rethinking Fitness
Most people that decide to get fit sign up at a gym. Some stick with it, but most don’t. We wanted to get fit, but we wanted to do it in a way that would work long term. We decided we had to make some lifestyle changes and establish some good fitness and nutrition habits. Crazy Idea #5 is also an extension of this and evolved from our desire to incorporate fitness into our daily lives.
- Rethinking Fitness
- Rethinking Fitness: The First Two Days
- Rethinking Fitness: Days 3, 4, 5 and Running Like an Elephant
- Rethinking Fitness: Weeks 1 and 2
- Rethinking Fitness: Weeks 3 and 4 – I feel good
- Rethinking Fitness: Goals
- Rethinking Fitness: I RAN A MILE!
- Rethinking Fitness: Weeks 5, 6, and 7
- Rethinking Fitness: Forming the Habit and then Stepping It Up
- Rethinking Fitness: P90X Update and Running a 5k
- Rethinking Fitness from 2012 to 2013
Crazy Idea #4 – Change our family surname (last name)
We had a not-so-great last name. It was hard to spell, hard to pronounce, and easy to make fun of. You now what? We don’t have to be stuck with a last name we don’t like. All it takes for a new name is a few forms, a background check, a little money, a visit with a judge, and a desire to break from normal to change something you are unhappy with.
- Our next crazy idea: Changing our Last Name (Surname)
- Name Change – Delays and Lost Paperwork
- Name Change – More Delays
- Name Change – We Have a Court Date!
- You Don’t Have to Be Stuck With a Name You Hate – Our Name Change Story
Crazy Idea #5 – Commute to Work by Bicycle
The idea to commute to work by bicycle came about as a combination of our Rethinking Fitness and our moving to an apartment closer to work. Our new apartment is 10 miles from my place of employment, which puts me in bike commuting range. I knew that two hours of cardio would be great for fitness, but I also learned that biking to work is fun, boosts my energy, and relaxes me after a stressful workday.
- Beach Cruiser Commuting – My First Bicycle Commute
- Beach Cruiser Commuting – My First Bicycle Commute part 2
- Beach Cruiser Commuting – My Bike and Gear
- Beach Cruiser Commuting – The Hidden Wonders of Nature
- Beach Cruiser Commuting – Groans and Squeaks and my New Bell iPulse Bike Light
- Bicycle Commute in the Rain
- Six Random Observations from Six Months of Bicycle Commuting
- Bicycle Commuting – My Bike and Gear
- Stress, Car Trouble, and Bike Commuting
Crazy Idea #6 – Transition to Self Employment
My day job is in IT (Information Technology). It pays the bills, but I’d like to create more freedom and personal satisfaction through self employment. So far I’ve tried blogging, book writing, and clutter coaching/professional organizing. I have enjoyed all these pursuits but have yet to transform them into a sustainable income stream. I continue to try different things as I pursue this goal, and I’ll keep you updated from time to time on my progress.
Rethinking the Dream Chronicles
After writing about all the crazy stuff we were doing, I wanted to hear from others that were rethinking their own dreams in some form or fashion. And with that “Rethinking the Dream Chronicles” was born. In this feature series I share stories of people that are rethinking their dreams, are downsizing, going minimalist, or doing things that are slightly outside of normal. I share these stories to inspire you to action.
- What’s Your Story? (includes instructions to submit your story)
- Rethinking the Dream Chronicles – Lyle
- Rethinking the Dream Chronicles – Amy
- Rethinking the Dream Chronicles – Megyn
Along our journeys and adventures, we’ve had some difficulties in our family life. This is the sad side of family that I felt compelled to share in the hopes that it might help others that are struggling with similar issues.
- Dealing with Toxic Grandparents
- Christmas with Toxic Grandparents
- Toxic Grandparents Update
- Toxic Grandparents Update and a Diagnosis for Faith
- Toxic Grandparents – A Breakthrough with Grandmother
- Growing a Relationship with my Brother
- Toxic Grandparents and Family Update
It seems smart phones are here to stay. We were die-hard dumb phone people until we found Ting. Read some of our initial thoughts about cell phones and then see how finally found a wireless company that is different from the competition.
- How much do you spend on communication?
- Cell Phone Woes – Is Ting Mobile the Answer?
- Ting Wireless: A Real Life Review and $25 off a phone if you sign up
- Ting Wireless: A Review after 2 Months of Service and a $25 Discount Code
- Ting Wireless: 6 month review, $25 coupon code, and a t-shirt giveaway
- One Year on Ting: Review of my Experience with Ting Wireless
Activities, Adventures, and Travel
One of our primary motivational factors is valuing activities over stuff. As we’ve purged our stuff and freed up our time, we have created more opportunities to do things as a family. Here are some of the fun things we’ve been up to.
- Experiences, Activities, and Events
- Are your dreams of the future aligned with your fondest memories of the past?
- Creating Memorable Experiences: Hunting for Shark Teeth in Venice Florida
- Western Caribbean Cruise Vacation on the Carnival Dream
- Seven Day Cruise Behind the Scenes
- Camping with my Brother in the Florida Keys