Friday, July 22, 2005

In My Library Bag: Scaling Down

I'm wrapping up a book called Scaling Down: Living Large in A Smaller Space by Judi Culbertson and Marj Decker, and I've already cleaned out half my closet.

Unlike most other organizational guides, Scaling Down is more about questions than answers.
  • What does scaling down mean for me?
  • How will a mission statement help me overcome my clutter...and my excuses?

I thought the book was an interesting mix of real-life anecdotes and simple living philosophy. The last chapters probe the cultural trends like supersizing and the decline of starter homes.

Having always lived in small spaces, this section resonated. Below is one of my favorite observations in the whole book:

"If you are planning to live large in a smaller space, you are swimming against
the tide. "Small" and "dated" are pejorative terms in our culture. You may be
perfectly happy with your home--until someone exclaims, "What a cute little
house!" and you feel insulted. Their comment has removed your home from being
judged as normal-size and implied that you could not afford a full-size house or
be able to decorate one. Perhaps it suggests that you are a "cute little person"
for living in such a place. (p. 197) "

--Culbertson, Judi and Marge Decker. Scaling Down: Living Large in a Small Space. Rodale 2005.


mothersong said...

I have gone to the library and taken out every book you have listed on your blog, and highly enjoyed them all. In a bit of synchronicity, I already have this book out of the library this week. I agree again, an excellent suggestion!

Meredith said...

How cool! I'm glad you've enjoyed some of my suggestions. I don't have much time to browse the library stacks alone, so I always appreciate having a list of titles to search for.

Do you have any favorites to recommend?

who has a copy of Mary Jane's Ideabook waiting at the hold desk as we speak!

Kim said...

Meredith, I agree. You always find such good books to recommend! I'll go see if my library has this one. ((hugs)) Kim

Anonymous said...

Our house is a smallish one and I'm kind of a packrat. I love the basic size of our house and given the fact that I don't keep this one clean enough, I certainly need nothing larger. It does sound like a good read. I may have to request this one when you are finished with it.

mothersong said...

I bought Mary Jane's Ideabook this past week. I read about it, looked at it at the bookstore, and then bought it online for $12 ( a deal I'm very proud of!) I haven't read it yet, because I need to finish up library books first.

Here's my current library reading list, besides those: Domestic Bliss, Simple Ways to Add Style To Your Life, by Rita Konig; A Reasonable Life by Ferenc Mate; Choosing Simplicity, by Linda Breen; and Graceful Simplicity.

My 4 stepchildren have been here for the summer, along with my own 5 children and a grandchild. You can see that my reading has a sort of theme that isn't existing in my outer space right now!


Meredith said...

Thanks, mothersong! I will add those to my list.

PS--Mary Jane's Ideabook is very, very fun to read! I'm trying my best to go slowly and savor...