Over the Xmas holidays, I watched a movie on Minimalism. The timing was impeccable. I've recently been exposed to mindful thinking (hence some focus on self-sufficiency) and this was the perfect next step in the thought process for me.
I'd originally thought that minimalism was about living with next to nothing. While some people do go that route, I learned that it is more about being mindful about the things I have. This means thinking carefully about each item I choose to keep and look after. I see minimalism as about only keeping things around that are useful or bring net value to my life. It was interesting to find that I was already on a path to minimalism without even realising it. In fact, I've been on the path (with some digression in the last few years) for almost 10 years now.
We've been donating toys that the kids no longer play with, or those that don't ever get cleared up and always seem to be all over the floor. I'd also had a habit of hanging on to broken toys (especially electrical toys) just in case I might fix or use them for another project. Obsolete computer equipment was also a big weight that I recently got rid of. I'm continuing the slow process of getting rid of things that don't work for us any more, are broken, or are just simply not used.
I'm finding that there is more space, less clutter and that I spend a lot less time tidying up after the kids now!