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'Nakakagaan Sa Bulsa': Mom Shares 8 Tips To Live Less And Be Happier In A Small Home
PHOTO BY Courtesy of Jannica Suillan
  • Let’s be honest — having kids can make it extra challenging to maintain an organized home. From clothes and toys, to other essentials — their belongings take up space, and while parents try their best to keep everything in order, getting one thing from the cabinet can lead to chaos.

    As a first-time mom, Jannica Suillan was drawn to the idea of living a minimalist lifestyle —  which revolves around the idea of owning few possessions and allotting space for the things you really need — and its benefits which she shared in a post on the Home Buddies Facebook group. What made Jannica’s story stand out is the fact the she was able to work toward minimalism while living in a small space.

    “Nakaka-overwhelm ang changes sa lives namin ng husband ko when Asher was born. ‘Nung na-discover namin ‘yung benefits ng minimalist living, gusto namin ma-incorporate ‘yun sa lives namin and ni baby. Nakakagaan sa bulsa pati sa emotional state na din,” she shares in an interview with SmartParenting.com.ph.

    How to achieve a minimalist small home

    Jannica with her husband, Kristoff, and son Asher.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Jannica Suillan

    For Jannica, the process began when they moved into a new home. “We were very intentional sa pag-design ng house and pati sa color scheme. Ang colors lang ay white, grey, browns, and black. Inaral namin talaga kung ano ang kailangan at hindi. Wala kaming nilagay na tingin namin na hindi magagamit,” she recalls.

    To help fellow parents achieve and maintain a minimalist home, Jannica shares some tips below:

    "Even our furniture and décor pieces, we made sure na cohesive when put together," says Jannica.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Jannica Suillan

    1. Declutter!

    “Alisin ang mga hindi na kailangan. Ang dami sa atin, mahilig mag-hoard, thinking na, ‘magagamit pa ito someday,’ the truth is, hindi. Dumadagdag lang ito sa kalat sa house. We need to change this mindset,” the mom says.

    2. Be a smart shopper.

    Before you make a purchase, ask yourself if you really need it or if you’ll be able to maximize the item you’re eying. “Dati, kung anu-ano lang binibili ko. Ngayon, I invest in quality items para hindi bili ng bili ulit.

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    "For example, we only have a limited number of utensils since dalawa lang kami ni husband, and hindi din nakaka-accommodate ng maraming bisita ang bahay namin,” Jannica explains.

    3. Have a designated area for your kids’ belongings.

    In their home, baby Asher, who recently turned one, has a designated play space, defined by a wooden play fence — a DIY project by Jannica’s husband.
    PHOTO BY Jannica Suillan

    “Lahat ng toys nandoon lang, kahit magulo, since nasa loob ng area, malinis pa rin ang bahay and hindi mahirap maglinis,” she shares.

    The mom adds that it's best to pick toys kids can play with for a long time. Jannica practices toy rotation to minimize the number of toys Asher plays with.

    4. Consider having an open closet.

    Since it’s open, you’ll be motivated to keep it neat. “Compared to having a cabinet with doors – mas may tendency na cluttered kasi hindi natin nakikita,” Jannica quips.


    5. There's a place for everything.

    Real talk: we’re guilty of keeping everything in the bedroom. You wouldn’t want to sleep in a room that looks like a storage space, right?

    In Jannica's home, their bedroom is meant only for sleeping. “Laman lang ng kwarto ay bed, rocking chair, mirror, at white drawer cabinet na nagbe-blend sa white walls namin para peaceful. Mas masarap matulog pag konting gamit lang nakikita at wala kaming TV sa room.”

    6. Say no to temptation.

    With the convenience of online shopping, it’s hard to say no to buying new items — with the excuse of making a purchase for the home. For Jannica, "Nangingibabaw ang overall benefits na nakukuha namin with living simply. ‘Yung feeling na freer and less tied down because of excess baggage."

    7. Minimalist living is more than just letting go of things you don’t need.

    “It’s about happiness and making room for the good things in life, the irreplaceable things — ‘yung feeling namin na pag nasa house, peaceful, happy, magaan, and focusing in the moment. There’s no need to feel distracted sa mga hindi naman importanteng bagay,” Jannica shares. 

    8. Make it your journey.

    While you can look up inspiration online, don’t let other people dictate your path toward minimalism. Don’t let social media and the comments of others get in the way of achieving your own goals.

    Want to share your #budgetperofancy home makeover? Email us at smartparentingsubmissions@gmail.com and tell us about your project. For more home improvement and renovation ideas, click here.

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