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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone paired down to just ONE of __ per person? For example, just one towel per person, one pair of shoes, one hat, one pair of underwear per day (per week), one outfit per day (per week) etc. I was thinking that if I would do a week's worth of something (like socks) 8 days might be best (one extra to wear while washing). I don't think this would work with sheets (you know, for those nights where everyone is throwing up!)<br><br>
I would HOPE this would solve a lot of problems . . .less would mean that we'd spend less, lose less, clean less. It would mean MORE money saved, more money saved, more general peace.<br><br>
I would not do this with things like books or any of DH's things (my plan would have to be limited to children and self).
 

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I wouldn't even consider it. There are 6 people and as I'm home w/the kids all day long. I would spend my day doing nothing but washing cups and plates not to say the messes they make. It would be a nightmare. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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I think it would work for some things but not all. For us, we need more than one pair of shoes. I need a pair of nice dress shoes, but then a pair of tennis shoes as well for everyday stuff. I also like a pair of thong sandals, for the hot summer days. My kids all have a pair of tennis shoes and a pair of sandals, along with a pair of boots during the winter months.<br><br>
The one outfit per day wouldn't work for us either. Not until the kids were older at least (and then they'd be wanting more outfits probably..). I'd spend more time in doing laundry otherwise.<br><br>
The one towel would work. But while it's in the wash, if that someone took a shower/bath, they'd need to borrow someone elses towel.. so two towels per person would work better.<br><br>
We do share a lot (towels, shoes - if they fit others of course). But some things, and only having one per person, would cause me to be doing more laundry and such. :/
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>sabrinat</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8193146"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I wouldn't even consider it. There are 6 people and as I'm home w/the kids all day long. I would spend my day doing nothing but washing cups and plates not to say the messes they make. It would be a nightmare. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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I've thought about the cup issue-- BUT I spend so long looking for sippy cups anyway that it might save time in the long run to just to have the one cup, rinse it out right away (or put in the fridge when not done), and then reuse. I just ordered Sigg cups for my kids and since they are so $, they are only getting one each . . .so I'm gonna give it a try. Plates, I'm not sure about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>UberMama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8193180"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">But some things, and only having one per person, would cause me to be doing more laundry and such. :/</div>
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We spend a lot of time doing laundry as it is . . .I thought, if I just have ONE towel per person, then I'll have less laundry to do overall, even though I might have to do it more often. AND, it will take me far less time to put away the laundry (which, IMO, is the worst part of laundry) so maybe it will be worth it.<br><br>
For shoes, I am thinking one pair per category.
 

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We just have one towel each and one set of sheets for each bed (one queen, one twin). But we don't have children so it's easy for me to say - OK, today I'm washing linens, so no showering or napping for three hours <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> We wash the towels once a week and just hang them to dry between uses. I know other people use towels differently but if you are just drying yourself off after a shower, you're clean, so it's not a hygiene issue - and the towels dry fine in 24 hours on towel racks. Also we don't have bed wetting or vomiting issues with the sheets.<br><br>
We only have six of each type of dish - big plate, small plate, bowl, glass, mug silver. I would like to cut this down to four of each (2 for each of us). I run the dishwasher every 2-3 days so either is fine in that respect, but at the weekends if we are home every day we go through so many dishes, it is ridiculous. If we didn't have so many it would be much simpler to just "wash before you use" and my kitchen would not explode every weekend. During ski season or midsummer it's no problem cause we are never home but now is the worst. Over two days my boyfriend used four big plates, three little plates and four glasses/mugs!!<br><br>
The only other thing to take into consideration (not so much for kids cause they outgrow things so quickly) is that the more often you wear/wash, the more quickly something will wear out. I had a favorite pair of shoes that only lasted 1 year when I wore them nearly every day. The sole just wore out. Same goes for a favorite sweatshirt, it's so pilly and worn because I wear it nearly every day in the winter. But again for kids - probably not a huge concern.
 

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I think having 2 or 3 per person is a lot more realistic, and still cuts back on lots of clutter and excess.<br><br>
Or, at the very least, have 1 towel per person plus a couple of extras to keep in the bathroom in case one gets totally messed up and you need a spare, or to have for guests.
 

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We have it down to 1 place setting per person (cutlery excluded, because we use it for mixing and other things - I often go through several forks or knives just while preparing the meal!) I keep a box of spare dishes hidden away for the 2 times a year we have guests for dinner. It has been amazingly helpful to cull it down to 1 setting per person. Before, we'd often go through <i>every dish in the house</i> before one of us would get around to doing the dishes. It's the one thing that we both procrastinate about. This way, we're forced to wash them right away. Which is great, as it doesn't give the dishes an opportunity to form a cement layer of oatmeal or pasta or whatever. My kitchen has been constantly clean since implementing this system.<br><br>
We recently culled it down to 2 towels per person. I have 4 large boxes of towels sitting in the garage ready to go to Goodwill.<br><br>
We have roughly one outfit per person, per day for the kids. We have a few more than 7 simply because we have a few dressy outfits/sweaters/etc that aren't practical to use every day. But yes, we have 1 "everyday" outfit per child, per day. I'm working on getting my wardrobe that simplified.<br><br>
Downsizing means that - yes - we have to clean more often. But the time we save is MASSIVE! I'd much rather spend 1-2 minutes washing our dinner dishes, than 1-2 HOURS washing every dish we own. I'd rather fold a load of laundry once a week, than have to fold EIGHTEEN loads of laundry once a month (yes, this has happened...horrible horrible horrible).<br><br>
Downsizing is a great motivation to keep the house-keeping under control. We HAVE to do it regularly, or we'd be hungry and naked. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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we sort of have, for some things. we have one towel per person (though the baby and i share because we bathe together) but have four extras in the closet for overnight guests. i just bought those a few weeks ago because we had family coming in to town and realized we had no other towels. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
we have one big plate, one little plate, and two bowls for each person that uses dishes, but way too many glasses and i need to put away about half of our silverware. i also have a ridiculous number of coffee mugs, especially since we probably consume less than 10 cups of coffee a week. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/innocent.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shy"><br><br>
the big kids have 10 outfits in every size up this season, but i haven't pared down the summer clothes for this size yet. i am trying to do the same for myself and my husband, but i have a hard time figuring out what things i have because they're nice and which things i actually like.<br><br>
we have one full set of sheets for our bed, and an extra fitted sheet in case something happens. we have two sets of sheets for the guest bed because sometimes we have unexpected guests and need clean sheets right away.<br><br>
i think it really helps me keep my house nice. things have to be washed and put away or we have no dishes, clothes, etc. i always know when something is missing so i can find it right away. i still have too much stuff, but i'm working on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Woo hoo! It is exciting to know that some of you do this and it works!<br><br>
I see one of the main issues being guests . . .that is why I would not get rid of our extra towels, I'd just put them in a place where "someone" will not get to them. What happens is that "someone" (who shall remain nameless) uses a towel, eventually gets a new one but fails to put the used one (I say, wash weekly) into the hamper . . .so pretty soon we have all these towels and no one knows which need to be washed. Then I have to wash them all and it seems like a big waste.<br><br>
Re: clothes-- What I've been doing this past year is to wait for a Gymboree sale, get several outfits in the same line, then the girls can mix/match. It makes it very easy to have a week's worth of outfits that way . . .and since I do laundry more often than 1X per week, it doesn't matter if they get something dirty and need to change. Once I lose my babyweight I'll do the same for myself.
 

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We do for some things. We have one regular set of linens for each bed, but a spare, hideously ugly cast-off for each for emergencies. We have one regularly-used towel for each of us, but a rather formidable stack on a shelf because they get used for things like toilet overflows and puke-fests (saves the sheets!) And I have a lot of hand towels, wash rags, and dish towels because we don't use paper towels at all.<br><br>
Dh has 2 chef coats that exchange places at the dry cleaner's, and needs a 3rd rather badly as he can't always be guaranteed of one of them staying clean for 2 days in a row and prefers not to launder them as they're expensive.<br><br>
We've each only got one pair of shoes worn everyday. For DH, it's the only pair he has at all. Mine are sandals with laces that tie around the ankle, so I have a pair of workboots for doing yard work, and a pair of black dressy flips that I wear with the few items in my wardrobe that brown ghillie sandals just don't coordinate with.<br><br>
We've got a lot more dishes than that. I might cull things a bit once BIL and his girlfriend move out next year (or if I move out to TX as i'm considering, I'll get the minimum for DD and I).
 

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We have a set of 4 dishes for daily use- there are four of us, and we have 8 dishes total, 4 plates, 4 bowls. They are enamel hobo/camp type dishes- unbreakable, not plastic, cute and cheap. We are still getting the silverware under control- I have come to the sad conclusion that we are going to have to buy some. We are down to two coffee cups, two sippys, a water bottle for DSS, and some beer mugs, but I want to replace all but the coffee cups with aluminum water bottles, so we can downsize a little there.<br><br>
We have another set of dishes and goblets that we got as wedding gifts. We use these when we have company, but if we hadn't gotten them as gifts, we would probably just use paper stuff for company.<br><br>
I do dishes frequently, but it never takes long.<br><br>
We have a terrycloth robe, a bathtowel, and a washcloth for each person, all the same matching color (me: white, DH: navy, DSS: green, DD: yellow). I also have a white turbee twist (hair towel turban thing) because I have long hair.<br><br>
I also have a set of four towels for company, and a couple extra big bathtowels that I use primarily for cleaning the floor and the pets, but they're there in case we need extra.<br><br>
Including kitchen cloths and cleaning rags, I still never do more than one load of towels per week, and one is a lot more typical.<br><br>
We have two sets of sheets per bed, except for the futon. It's a full, the same as DSS's, so we have two sets of full sheets, period. We don't have sleepover company that often.<br><br>
As far as shoes, I recently downsized A LOT, but I still have way more than one pair.<br><br>
We have also started the process of organizing clothes by outfit. DH has work uniforms that he changes into at work (they launder them for him!) so he has 15 head to toe outfits, everything from overalls to shorts, plus three dressy outfits and two suits. Once we did this, he went from 44 Tshirts to 15, plus 5 undershirts. He went from 38 pairs of socks (plus a ton of unmated socks) to 15 pairs of sweat socks, three pairs of wool socks, and two pairs of dress socks. The outfit principle has really helped us downsize our clothes. I'm in the process of doing the same to my clothes.<br><br>
I guess what I'm getting at here is that while "one per person" may not be realistic for everything, you can still downsize a ton.
 

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We lived out of town last summer because of my husband's job and we rented a house, the living room was completly empty since we had no furnature and wasn't going to buy any for short term, In the family room we had a futon, a coffe table and tv (cable was available in the area, I have never had cable before in my life so was pretty neat short term!)<br><br>
In the kitchen, we took a folding table and the house had 2 chairs and a small end table we used for a chair, had to thrift for another chair. I only took 1 of each in the kitchen it was wonderful, truely wonderful, I took only my most treasured gadets, can opener, whisk, knife, spatula, cheese grater. We each had one drinking glass, 1 big plate, 1 bowl, 1 saucer, a fork, spoon. we had 2 coffe cups and a community butterknife. I did end up going to the thrift and finding another butterknife because the boys argued over it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> we had a big pot, a small pot, 2 cast iron skillets, a tall deep one and a smaller one. a spaghetti strainer. a cutting board. The house came with a dish strainer and dustpan, I bought a mop and husband brought an old broom home from work. we also had a coffepot. House had a stove and fridge.<br><br>
For bath, total of 5 towels for 4 people, a couple washcloths and about a dozen handtowels for bath and kitchen. toothpaste, big persons and kids, 4 brushes, a pump bottle of soap, husband's deoderant and razor. We had 1 bar of soap and 1 bottle of shampoo, 2 tub toys, my hair ties and a couple of ribbons for me when I wanted to be fancy. The youngest was still his dipers so had his cloth and a pack of disposables just in case and a box of wipes.<br><br>
Clothing was insane, I took most of what we owned because I went through everything because that was my goal and I really cut back what we had, not to 1 outfit a day, but I did get rid of the zillion socks I owned, my fat/skinny clothes, kids stuff, I tried getting rid of DH's clothes but he finally put his foot down and said no more of his stuff, He's worn the same size since high school (mid-80's) and probably has some from back then but it's not that he's into clothes, he's just cheap <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> We didn't have dressers and not many hangers to hang stuff, so things we piled in stacks along the bedroom. (the house had a washer and dryer which was a 'treat' since I line dry.<br><br>
Shoes, the older boy usually has 2 pair, 1 for town and 1 for play, the smaller boy has more since he has the hand me downs plus his 1 for town. I have 1 tennis for town, 1 nice leather, a pair of sandles and a pair of flip flops that I just bought. My husband has 2 pair hiking boots, one he wears daily to work and the old pair that he used to wear that he saved becasue they still had life in them for around the farm, he also has tennis and flipflops. (that's what we have all the time, not just last summer)<br><br>
our BR, a bed we found used, 1 set sheets they didn't fit but worked, 1 blanket, 1 quilt and 4 pillows. a lamp on a little table<br><br>
kids room, toys, toys toys, brought alot of their toys so they didn't feel homesick and I tried not to get rid of anything they had in fear that they would feel bad. they each had a crib matress on the floor with 2 sheets each, 2 quilts and a special blanket for the little one (they slept in our bed so their matresses was mainly used for jumping! they also had a ton of books, but I really shouldn't of brought any because we used the library in town alot.<br><br>
I brought a treadle sewing machine and some fabric that I was working on for a quilt along with a small box that had scissors and pins, marking tools, a ruler, little stuff, pencil box size.<br><br>
I brought office/house paperwork, bills and folders, tomatoe box size was all I felt I needed and actually didn't have to have most of it, but I did feel better having it with me instead of not having it and needing something.<br><br>
That's it, that's all we lived with for 5 months and it was wonderful. Oh how I hated coming 'home' to my junk!<br><br>
okay that was waaaay longer than I originally planned....
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>sabrinat</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8193146"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I wouldn't even consider it. There are 6 people and as I'm home w/the kids all day long. I would spend my day doing nothing but washing cups and plates not to say the messes they make. It would be a nightmare. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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A couple of months ago I posted about paring down to one cup, one plate, one bowl per person. It's actually reduced the work and mess in my kitchen. We have six people here and homeschool so I'm also here all day long with four kids. We keep the cups hung on the dishrack all the time when not in use (the kids swish theirs out after use if they can, or I do, or if they just drink water they just hang them back up and I try to wash them once a day with soap). Everyone's plates and bowls are unique so it's really easy to know who didn't clear theirs and ask them to take care of it. I'm working toward having them, particularly the big kids, wash their own...but when things don't get washed it's easy for me to quickly wash them up while cooking - it's only six, you know? Before, we'd have a MOUNTAIN of dirty dishes because the used ones wouldn't get washed before another clean one was used.<br><br>
I think it works because it's really easy to rinse or swish or wipe out one or a few dishes, but really hard for me to get going on a huge mountain of dishes. Now, when every single dish in the house is dirty, my counter still isn't completely covered. I love it.<br><br>
Just offering an opposite perspective! (FWIW I did keep a stash of "extra" plates and bowls for when we have lots of people over, which we do periodically. But I keep them away from the others so no one is tempted.) Also I did not reduce the amount of silverware but it hasn't seemed to be a problem - we keep a container for soaking next to the sink and do the silverware all at once, and that seems easiest.<br><br>
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I am not sure about minimizing clothes and linens, though. I am not very good about making sure laundry is done regularly. But the idea intrigues me, and maybe it is worth a try. I loathe piles of laundry, dirty or clean. If it were easier to get to the bottom of the pile I might be more excited about actually doing laundry.
 

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1 memory box per person.<br><br><br>
When or if the memory box (AKA Rubbermade) gets full you have to pair down what you want to keep. ie. report cards, yearbooks, baby clothes, etc.
 
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