a very happy parents with kids lying on the grass.

How to Get Started with Simple Living Even with Small Kids (14 Easy Tips)

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Hello Mamas, are you wondering how to get started with simple living even with small kids? Is it even possible?

The short answer is yes! It might be more challenging, but it’s not impossible at all. Simplifying your family life is possible even when you’re still raising small kids.

If you want to know more about what simple living is, check out this post:

What is Simple Living? (Things You Need To Know)

Easy Tips on How to Get Started with Simple Living Even with Small Kids

Get started with simple living even with small kids at home by identifying your priorities, values, and beliefs, declutter your home, don’t let the kids have a lot of toys, watch less tv, don’t overload the calendar with a lot of activities, let the kids have a lot of playtime, lessen your reliance to the grocery store, practice self-sufficiency, spend less time on social media, travel less, build a capsule wardrobe, spend more time at home, live within your means, be intentional with your purchases, and lastly, be grateful all the time.

1. Identify Your Priorities, Values, and Beliefs

When it comes to simplifying your family life, you need to identify your family’s priorities, values, and beliefs first.

What are the things that are most important to you and your family? What do you value most? Once you know what’s important, it’s easy to start identifying values and beliefs that support those priorities.

For example, one of my family’s priorities is spending time a lot of time as a family. We value getting along with others, being honest, generous, trustworthy, and supportive. And our family believes that everything we have is from God, that it’s not actually ours, but we are only stewards.

Once you know your priorities, values, and beliefs, it’s easy to start making choices to simplify your family life based on those things.

2. Declutter Your Home

Decluttering your home is the first step in simplifying life, in my opinion, be it with kids or not. A house full of unnecessary things is a constant source of stress.

a decluttered kitchen pantry.
Our decluttered kitchen pantry. It can still be improved, but way better than the cluttered version.

Start small, one step at a time, you don’t have to declutter all at once. Take your time and do it slowly. Room-by-room decluttering is ideal for moms with small kids.

3. Don’t Let Your Kids Have A LOT of Toys

I know this is very difficult because it’s very hard for us parents to say no to our kids when they ask us for toys, especially when they’re already crying and making a show in front of the toy store. And not to mention the grandparents who always want to spoil their grandkids!

But don’t despair Mamas, there are ways. Slowly move the toys that your kids are no longer playing with, toys that are already broken, or no longer appropriate for their age. If they have a lot of toys, they won’t even notice.

And tell the loving grandparents to not buy too many toys. Or if they really insist, tell them the exact toys that your kids will love and play with for a long time.

4. Watch Less TV

I know a lot of families who are into simple living who totally get rid of their TVs, but you don’t have to get rid of your TV set to start living a simple life.

person holding white remote control

We still have a TV at home, but my husband and I don’t watch a lot of TV, especially now that the kids are getting older. We are already tired at the end of the day and just want to go to bed right away.

We also let our kids watch Youtube videos thru the big screen, but we choose what they can watch. Right now they are into Paw Patrol, CocoMelon, Blippi, Leo el Camion, and also car videos that they watch together with my husband.

5. Don’t Overload Your Calendar with Activities

An overloaded calendar is usually a cause of stress, don’t do it! You don’t have to enroll your kids in every extra-curricular activities available in school or in your community.

You don’t have to say yes to every party invitation, family gathering, school, or community gathering either! Choose only the ones that your kids or family are comfortable and happy with.

A family calendar with few schedules.
Our family calendar for April 2022.

Our eldest is 4 years old and is now in P4, but we didn’t enroll him in any extra-curricular activity at school. We prefer for him to be spending more time at home playing with his younger brother after school.

6. Let Your Kids Have a Lot of Playtime

Let your kids have a lot of playtime at home, in the park, at the entrance of your home, or in the garden.

let kids have a lot of playtime - one of the tips to get started with simple living even with small kids

Let them play freely without coaching them on what to do, and you will be surprised by the creativity they can produce with their free play.

7. Lessen Your Reliance to the Grocery Store

Try to minimize your dependence on the grocery store by making homemade food from scratch, buying fewer veggies and herbs by gardening, repairing the broken appliances or items than just throwing them right away, making DIYs instead of buying, and many more ideas.

8. Practice Self-Sufficiency Slowly

This is related to #6, but on a bigger scale, I guess. Try to think of ways for your family to be more self-sufficient. Examples are by collecting rainwater, installing solar panels, gardening, raising chicken for eggs and meat consumption, and bigger animals for meat if there’s enough space.

a garden with newly planted vegetables.
Part of our backyard garden.

These things are long-term goals that you and your family can do slowly, one project at a time.

My family started with gardening, then rainwater catching, raising chickens for eggs, and installing solar panels. We are planning to raise some more chicken for meat purposes, maybe in the last quarter of this year or early next year.

9. Less Time on Social Media

Most people who are into simple living spend very minimal time on social media, others don’t have social media at all! My husband doesn’t have any social media and one of his ultimate desires is to get rid of his phone one day!

giving up social media as part of lenten decluttering.

This is one of my struggles though because I spend a LOT of time on social media. There was a time that I was successful in reducing my time in socmed, but unfortunately, I slipped back at spending more time on Facebook.:( Suggestions are very welcome!

10. Travel Less

Families who are into simple living are not against travel at all, but in general, they like spending more time at home. Though there are also a lot of families who adapted a simple lifestyle, so they can travel more.

But for families with small kids like us, I suggest traveling less, because traveling with small kids is actually a source of stress than enjoying the vacation. Save the money and spend it on vacations when kids are bigger. Or book shorter vacations that are closer to home while kids are smaller.

In the queue to board the tourism train in Santiago de Compostela.
A family vacation in Santiago de Compostela.

Just in case you will be embarking on a long road trip with your kids, this post might be of help:

How To Survive Long Car Rides With Toddlers (13 Helpful Tips)

11. Build a Capsule Wardrobe

I just learned about capsule wardrobe about 2 years or 1 year ago, and I love the idea! I am still working on my capsule wardrobe, and I also applied the idea to my husband’s and our kids’ wardrobe.

It’s now easier to find what clothes to wear since there are only a few choices and it’s good because you get to wear all your clothes and you only keep the clothes that you really like and wear.

12. Spend More Time at Home

You don’t have to go out and load your weekend with activities. Stay home and spend quality time with your family, or invite your family and friends to come over and spend time with your family during the weekend.

two toddler boys playing magic tiles at home.
Our boys playing at home.

This is where my husband and I disagree because I want to go out and have a weekend escapade once in a while, but he is always hesitant claiming that there’s no other place like home!

13. Live Within Your Means

This is very important because “keeping up with the Joneses” will surely burn you out! There are several spending formulas available that you can follow. Some are following the 80-20 rule (80% expenses, 20% savings), while others are into the 70-20-10 rule (70% expenses, 20% savings, 10% tithes).

Whatever you follow, make sure to live within your means to avoid debts at any cost. If it’s very necessary, keep it to the minimum and never get debt or loan for wants, just for needs.

And if you want to save more for a period of time to complete the family’s emergency fund, you can challenge your family to live even below your means to speed up the saving process.

14. Be Intentional With Your Purchases

Gone are the days when I would just buy whatever I see is cheap! This was me when I was single, I was a hoarder of cheap clothes and accessories. I ended up with a lot of clothes still with their tags on stored in a plastic container years later. 🙁

Now, I am more intentional with my purchases. I think many times before finally buying an item. My husband has invited me to shop on many occasions, but I end up buying nothing because I don’t want to buy on a whim anymore.

I want to have more time to think of the items that I will be buying, making sure that I really need them and if yes, what style and color should I go for. I want to make sure that I will really love the items that I’ll buy, so I can use them for a long time.

15. Be Grateful, Always.

Gratitude is an important aspect of simple living. When we are constantly grateful for the good in our lives, it helps us stay positive and upbeat. It also strengthens our relationship with God, who is the source of all good.

When we focus on what we have instead of what we don’t have, we are more likely to live a simple life that is free from drama and stress. Being grateful makes us happy and less likely to take things for granted.

Thank you in different languages.

So be thankful for everything, even when things don’t go as planned or you don’t have everything you want. Remember: Everything will work out in the end if you keep your attitude positive and focused on the good in life!

Final Thoughts on How To Get Started with Simple Living Even with Small Kids

Simplifying life with small kids might be more challenging than having older kids, or not having kids at all. But we parents should put in mind that it’s doable and possible. 

We only need the right motivation and inspiration to get started. I hope that these tips will help in getting you started on your family’s journey to simple living.

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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