Bike Forums

Bike Forums (https://www.bikeforums.net/forum.php)
-   Living Car Free (https://www.bikeforums.net/forumdisplay.php?f=226)
-   -   How simply do you live? (https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=163801)

silverwolf 06-17-10 01:00 PM

I need some help here. I have a TV and cable, but rarely watch it- I use BBC radio for news and D/L my TV shows (House, old britcoms, Lost, etc). But i do occasionally watch things like CSPAN, and those weird daytime court shows when I can't sleep.

It seems obvious that i should just get rid of the damn thing, but every time i move it out and store it, i find myself wanting to watch the few programs i watch on TV- despite the fact that when the TV is there, it doesn't matter one way or another.

This might be common but it has never happened to me before, and alot of stuff has left my possession in the last few months. Does anyone know some good strategies to get rid of this weird pining for something I really don't give a damn about?

Newspaperguy 06-17-10 01:07 PM

Once you get something out of the house, you probably won't want it back in again. If you want it again, think about whether this is a need, whether it is something that will get used or whether it will sit in the corner of the basement collecting dust.

Smallwheels 06-17-10 07:52 PM

You Need A Substitute Activity.
 

Originally Posted by silverwolf (Post 10977670)
But i do occasionally watch things like CSPAN, and those weird daytime court shows when I can't sleep.
Does anyone know some good strategies to get rid of this weird pining for something I really don't give a damn about?

To give up something you need to adopt something else to use in its place. Try replacing those activities with something else before you give up the TV. Then one day you'll know you won't need it or want it.

I mostly use the internet to view TV shows. Sometimes I rent DVDs. Of course those aren't the same as CSPAN.

silverwolf 06-17-10 11:55 PM

Thanks for the advice guys. Smallwheels, you're probably right about the supplementary activity. I also use the internet for most of my shows, apart from House and The Office all of "my" shows are either over or they're movies. Those daytime court shows (Judge Judy and such) I could drop but CSPAN is an interesting channel for real politics. Would be hard to let that one go, maybe they have an internet archive of something.

spooner 06-18-10 04:41 AM

I live simply not just in terms of material things - but also in relationships.

I'm single and will always be. I don't own a pet. And I have just a few very good friends.

spooner 06-18-10 04:46 AM


Originally Posted by Roody (Post 10863291)
As you get rid of the excess things, you start to realize that the real clutter is inside your head, and a more drastic de-cluttering is called for.

A lot of people would benefit from an emotional enema.

BIG-E 06-26-10 02:16 AM

I've found that living with my fiancee has taught me a lot about myself. We're getting married in less than a month and I'm looking forward to many years of growth with her.

We don't own a TV or a car. We do enjoy watching videos on our computers in the evenings after dinner (after riding our bikes!). We grow most of our own veggies in 1200sf of raised beds. We bought a chest freezer last fall and have more than paid for it by buying food on sale or from local farms in bulk.

She has a good job at a local bike/gear shop so we get great deals on clothes and bikes. She's also a talented jeweler and does very well at the local farmers' market and online. I do web programming from home. We have a great 11 month old German Shepherd to play with and plan to have a couple kids. We're renting for now, and lucky to be able to have a garden.

We're hoping to buy our own place within the next couple years. We'll have bigger gardens, chickens, shop space, and be able to improve our property, not for profit but for own our benefit. I have carpentry experience, she has carpentry, plumbing, and cabinetry experience. We're both good learners and are from skilled families.

We have a lot of great friends and family nearby. Life is good.

I used to drive a lot, including for my job. It was miserable.

silverwolf 06-29-10 12:09 PM

^Great story. Sounds somewhat similar to my ultimate goals with minimalisation. Good luck :)

I sold the TV and dropped cable :D

I still watch some TV on the laptop, and have a large music collection but they're both free, digital and easily manageable.

Still have to sell alot of crap however. Reading through this forum has been inspiring at times, seeing people cut through far more stuff than I have and come out happier because of it.

fjor 07-19-10 10:51 AM

Awesome thread
 
So glad to have found fellow simpletons! My pursuit for simplicity has led down some strange paths...

Still getting rid of possessions and occasionally buying new ones which ultimately help simplify things (for example, Exofficio briefs - Best underwear ever.)

So...
* Reduce possessions (In progress - Getting very minimal now though!)

* No real bed, sleeping on a thin mattress (Started as prep for a cycling trip but continued as my sleep was much better)

* No TV (Bliss)

* Using a standing desk for my laptop at home (Discourages excessive Internet usage)

* Paleo/primal diet (More stable energy levels - marksdailyapple.com is a great resource)

* Exercise routine is a more primal-ish too

* "Barefoot" running (Just about to make my own huaraches based on invisibleshoe.com)

* No more chemical filled cosmetics - Diluted apple cider vinegar as a toner, Coconut/Almond oil as a moisturizer (Protip: Coconut oil works as a deodorant as well)

* Drink tap water, take my Sigg bottle with me everywhere

* Given up alcohol - Had some great nights without it

* More time for reading (Into the Wild and Thoreau already mentioned, off the top of my head I also recommend Siddhartha, Dharma Bums and Ishmael)

* Trying to learn meditation


That's all that comes to mind right now. Hope this thread keeps going!

yater 07-20-10 04:09 PM


Originally Posted by fjor (Post 11138011)
So glad to have found fellow simpletons! My pursuit for simplicity has led down some strange paths...

Still getting rid of possessions and occasionally buying new ones which ultimately help simplify things (for example, Exofficio briefs - Best underwear ever.)

So...
* Reduce possessions (In progress - Getting very minimal now though!)

* No real bed, sleeping on a thin mattress (Started as prep for a cycling trip but continued as my sleep was much better)

* No TV (Bliss)

* Using a standing desk for my laptop at home (Discourages excessive Internet usage)

* Paleo/primal diet (More stable energy levels - marksdailyapple.com is a great resource)

* Exercise routine is a more primal-ish too

* "Barefoot" running (Just about to make my own huaraches based on invisibleshoe.com)

* No more chemical filled cosmetics - Diluted apple cider vinegar as a toner, Coconut/Almond oil as a moisturizer (Protip: Coconut oil works as a deodorant as well)

* Drink tap water, take my Sigg bottle with me everywhere

* Given up alcohol - Had some great nights without it

* More time for reading (Into the Wild and Thoreau already mentioned, off the top of my head I also recommend Siddhartha, Dharma Bums and Ishmael)

* Trying to learn meditation


That's all that comes to mind right now. Hope this thread keeps going!

You must be ~21 y/o.

yater 07-20-10 04:18 PM


Originally Posted by iBarna
Ah, the own vs. rent debate. As you can guess, I'm a renter. And as a non American, I do think that Americans have a big obsession with "owning" a house. I dunno... I'm simply not much interested in signing a mortgage so that I can own a house in 30 years and perhaps make some money with reselling it. I'm happy to live off a salary and actually think that I'm safer this way than with such a long term investment. I can move / change / adapt on a moment's notice with little hassle. I easily stay ahead of the curve so to speak.

What surprises me though even more than the American "I need to own" is the reactions I get when they learn that I rent and have no interest in owning a house. They look at me like I'm crazy. I don't know, my life philosophy is quite common in Europe... many people are like that. Many peole live their lives, even raise families while renting.

I may own a house at one point. I'm not diametrically opposed to the idea. But for now I see no reason.
You own EQUITY in your home if it's "your home". If you pay 10 years on a mortgage, you have 10 years worth of equity...meaning you can sell the house at the new market value (almost always appreciated) and get your equity (the money you've been paying for 10 years) out of it when you sell. When you rent a home for 10 years, you pack your stuff and leave with nothing. Meanwhile, you've paid off half of the value of your landlord's property and have NOTHING to show for it. THINK!

wahoonc 07-20-10 06:27 PM


Originally Posted by yater (Post 11147222)
You own EQUITY in your home if it's "your home". If you pay 10 years on a mortgage, you have 10 years worth of equity...meaning you can sell the house at the new market value (almost always appreciated) and get your equity (the money you've been paying for 10 years) out of it when you sell. When you rent a home for 10 years, you pack your stuff and leave with nothing. Meanwhile, you've paid off half of the value of your landlord's property and have NOTHING to show for it. THINK!

Unless you were on of the people that took the hit on your real estate values this last go around...

FWIW I am not worried about home values, I own mine free and clear. But many, many people are getting slammed on what they paid versus what they can get for their current properties. My brother lives in the Denver area. His house is also paid for, but many of his neighbors are trying to sell, many have been in the neighborhood 7-12 years and many are upside down on their mortgages for a variety of reasons.

Owning is not for everybody, nor is renting. You make the best choice and go with it.

Also the way most mortgages work you pay a lot of interest for most of the early years of the mortgage, then near the end really start to get to the principal. If your house doesn't appreciate much over 10 years all you have done is basically pay rent. You will have some equity but not much.

Aaron :)

yater 07-20-10 08:14 PM


Originally Posted by wahoonc (Post 11147892)
Unless you were on of the people that took the hit on your real estate values this last go around...

FWIW I am not worried about home values, I own mine free and clear. But many, many people are getting slammed on what they paid versus what they can get for their current properties. My brother lives in the Denver area. His house is also paid for, but many of his neighbors are trying to sell, many have been in the neighborhood 7-12 years and many are upside down on their mortgages for a variety of reasons.

Owning is not for everybody, nor is renting. You make the best choice and go with it.

Also the way most mortgages work you pay a lot of interest for most of the early years of the mortgage, then near the end really start to get to the principal. If your house doesn't appreciate much over 10 years all you have done is basically pay rent. You will have some equity but not much.

Aaron :)

15 year fixed rate right now is REALLY low. You'll have PLENTY of equity in 10 years. You have to know what you're doing, I guess.

wahoonc 07-21-10 03:20 AM


Originally Posted by yater (Post 11148340)
15 year fixed rate right now is REALLY low. You'll have PLENTY of equity in 10 years. You have to know what you're doing, I guess.

Do you want to GUARANTEE that my house is going to appreciate in value over the next 10 years?

I agree that if you want to buy and have the credit rating that now is an excellent time to buy. But given the instability in the current job market I would be loath to take on much if any debt load.

Aaron :)

fjor 07-21-10 07:49 AM


Originally Posted by yater (Post 11147175)
You must be ~21 y/o.

Negatory! I am 27 :P

Platy 07-21-10 08:53 AM


Originally Posted by wahoonc (Post 11147892)
Owning is not for everybody, nor is renting.

I think people can live simply either as owners or renters. The key is to know yourself well enough to decide which way to go.

Newspaperguy 07-22-10 12:37 AM

Too often, the focus seems to be on finding more money, through a better paying job, moonlighting, entrepreneurship, gambling, investing or some other means. The extra money is good to have, but it's far easier to focus on the expenses and find savings there.

I'd even go as far as to say having a good grip on expenses and keeping them in line is more important than having a strong income. Spend wisely. Don't buy what you can't afford. Know the difference between a want and a need. Know where your money is going.

spooner 07-22-10 12:48 AM


Originally Posted by yater (Post 11148340)
15 year fixed rate right now is REALLY low. You'll have PLENTY of equity in 10 years. You have to know what you're doing, I guess.

If you look at home prices historically you see a pretty flat line except for the Great Depression and the bubble of the 2000s.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sh...E2_Fig_2-1.png

Homes were never meant to be investments. They are places to live. The above chart shows that.


Shiller shows that inflation-adjusted U.S. home prices increased 0.4% per year from 1890–2004 and 0.7% per year from 1940–2004

Roody 07-22-10 04:06 PM


Originally Posted by spooner (Post 11155273)
If you look at home prices historically you see a pretty flat line except for the Great Depression and the bubble of the 2000s.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sh...E2_Fig_2-1.png

Homes were never meant to be investments. They are places to live. The above chart shows that.

I think this is one of the most important financial charts ever drawn. If more people--including the so-called financial experts--had read that chart 10 years ago, this whole financial crisis would have been avoided. You have drawn the right conclusions, IMO, spooner.

krapes 07-26-10 04:00 PM

Real estate may be a nice and safe investment, but I don't think it's a good idea to base your whole life around an investment. Because of an investment on a house that my parents bought- I have to live in a suburb and waste hours upon hours of time commuting to the city (the time it takes by car is not significantly shorter than by bicycle- believe it or not)- not to mention that I simply hate where I live (all money goes towards paying off the house). Is an investment worth chaining yourself to some place and wasting time out of your life? What happens when you sell (IF you sell) your house? Are you just going to buy a bigger house and then another until you ultimately die rich? I don't think the satisfaction of having a lot of theoretical value on your home transfers over when you die. Also, what happens if you lose your job and have to find another one? You could move somewhere that has open positions but you are limited by the fact that you have a house that you've based your entire life around. Some people may want to live stagnant lifestyles in one place for the rest of their lives- but I don't.

I realize that the circumstances I'm addressing may not apply to all homeowners- but it seems like a majority feel that a house is necessary and worth contributing a majority of income.

spooner 07-26-10 05:22 PM


Originally Posted by fjor (Post 11138011)
So glad to have found fellow simpletons! My pursuit for simplicity has led down some strange paths...

Still getting rid of possessions and occasionally buying new ones which ultimately help simplify things (for example, Exofficio briefs - Best underwear ever.)

So...
* Reduce possessions (In progress - Getting very minimal now though!)

* No real bed, sleeping on a thin mattress (Started as prep for a cycling trip but continued as my sleep was much better)

* No TV (Bliss)

* Using a standing desk for my laptop at home (Discourages excessive Internet usage)

* Paleo/primal diet (More stable energy levels - marksdailyapple.com is a great resource)

* Exercise routine is a more primal-ish too

* "Barefoot" running (Just about to make my own huaraches based on invisibleshoe.com)

* No more chemical filled cosmetics - Diluted apple cider vinegar as a toner, Coconut/Almond oil as a moisturizer (Protip: Coconut oil works as a deodorant as well)

* Drink tap water, take my Sigg bottle with me everywhere

* Given up alcohol - Had some great nights without it

* More time for reading (Into the Wild and Thoreau already mentioned, off the top of my head I also recommend Siddhartha, Dharma Bums and Ishmael)

* Trying to learn meditation


That's all that comes to mind right now. Hope this thread keeps going!


Originally Posted by yater (Post 11147175)
You must be ~21 y/o.

Ha! That's my life and I'm 40+!

z3px 08-14-10 11:34 AM

How many of you guys follow blogs like zen habits and mnmlist? Wondering if there are any good ones out there like these that are a good source of inspiration.

Smallwheels 08-15-10 11:12 AM

Visit This Blog About Simple Living In A Trailer
 
http://mobilecodgers.blogspot.com/

Remember somewhere in this thread someone mentioned RVs as a place to live? On another bicycle forum in the off topic section, someone posted this blog because of what the author lived in. He took a sixteen foot utility trailer (you know, those white boxes on wheels) and made the interior livable. It was a stealthy RV. It's a brilliant idea and I'm sure many people have done it. It allowed him to park within cities on public streets and not be hassled by police or residents.

He is a poet and writer that follows in the footsteps of Henry David Thoreau. He lives a minimalist lifestyle. Since he doesn't live in RV parks he saves tons of money boondocking (parking his trailer anywhere on public land free). He said his expenses for three years of living were $8000.00. Of course he isn't adding the price of his truck and trailer to that number.

In the short term, living in an inexpensive apartment without owning a car is just as cheap as his lifestyle. On the other hand, as time goes by the annual expenses of a truck and trailer drop because they get paid off. If they are kept in good repair the trailer lifestyle could become much cheaper over the years, especially if the truck and trailer are kept more than twenty-five years. Cars can last that long with good care. I suppose trailers could too.

Somewhere in the blog he switched to a conventional RV trailer. I think I would have continued with the stealth idea and just switched to a larger utility trailer.

In case some people don't know, it is illegal in many places for people to live in vehicles on city streets. Since RVs stand out they just invite police to come by and tell the occupants to move out of the neighborhood. By living in the utility trailer he could go unnoticed.

martinwf5 08-18-10 04:47 AM

getting there slowly
 
Well i i have enjoyed reading every single post in this thread, please keep them coming.

It started off with me a couple of weeks ago, the car was due its MOT ( vehicle road test in the uk) insurance was due, so was the car tax, so in total before repairs 500,
So we decided the car was to go, and live car free, use the bikes,public transport and trains.

So really we are in our third week of been car free and its working very well, we have asda delivering once a fortnight and we top up with shopping on our bikes, we have had a few days out that were very good on the trains to local spots.

But becoming car free has inspired us to save more money elsewhere, we have cancelled our cable, thats another 70 per month on top, and sold all car related posessions that we have stored around our home and shed, ie, car seats/ tools/ parts.

We are like many of the above posts, we may not have a lot in our house, but what we do have is good quality and will last, i don't do ornaments if thats what you want to call them, or nik/naks, i just cant do with the clutter.

zoltani 08-20-10 06:45 AM

Well, I guess I knew this already, but stumbled on a new idea yesterday.

Background is that I bought a juice machine many months ago, I know, adding another appliance isn't really adding to simplicity, but man that juice is good.

Anyway, I wanted to go to the farmer's market yesterday but when I got there it was over and they were packing up. I was surprised by the amount of fruits they were throwing out. I got a bunch of yellow plums, purple plums, nectarines, and peaches....all for free. Most of the peaches had a lot of mold on them, but i cut the bad parts off and juiced the rest, sometimes i only got about 1/4 of edible peach, but when you don't pay you don't care to throw the rest out.

Man, that juice was some of the best i've made, probably cause it was so sweet due to the fruits being overly ripe. And the fact that it was free made it taste even better!

There are markets around here nearly everyday, so i'm gonna keep on the lookout, and drink good fresh, healthy and FREE juice everyday!


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:16 AM.


Copyright © 2022 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.