How to Get The F*ck Over It and Move On: a review of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Posted on by MK Carroll

Sometimes you need to have someone gently and firmly grab you by the face and tell you to just get over it already.  This book is all about telling you to get the f*ck over it and move on, it just does it really nicely.

Number one: this is not about getting rid of everything you own, unless that's what makes you happy. This is not about having a minimalist white space with one perfect teacup, unless that's what makes you happy. This is about asking yourself which of your belongings bring you joy, and being honest with yourself about it. A friend of mine KonMari'd her art studio and it's been a big inspiration to me - she's still a collector, it's still a lot of stuff, and it's a beautiful reflection of her personality. You can see photos in her Instagram feed: brandiislight

Number two: if something isn't bringing you joy, sometimes you can make a simple change to make it something that brings you joy (and sometimes that thing is changing the way you think about it).  Although Kondo is about the immediate gut response, I think it can be worthwhile to take a moment and ask yourself why something doesn't bring you joy, and if it's an easy fix, consider doing so. One of my shirts failed the joy check, because one of the buttons would pop out of the buttonhole at inconvenient times. I fixed it in a couple of minutes with a needle and thread, tightening the buttonhole, and now it's joyful! Sometimes you can't afford to offload everything that isn't pinging the joy meter. What Kondo has to say about gratitude and appreciation for the things that you need in your life can really come into play here. The curtain in the living room window may not spark joy in me immediately, but I can appreciate that it keeps the afternoon sun out of my eyes when I sit on the couch. I'll replace it when I can, and until then, I'll appreciate the job that it does. 

You know what doesn't give me joy? 5 page care labels in clothing. A few minutes and a seam ripper made a few not-joyful items joyful. 

You know what doesn't give me joy? 5 page care labels in clothing. A few minutes and a seam ripper made a few not-joyful items joyful. 

Number three: you don't have to do it all in one day. I know that's what the book is telling you to do, but that's just not workable for everyone, so break it up into chunks if you need to.  

Things I was surprised by: 

  • how resistant I was to the idea that I deserve to be surrounded by joy
  • how much it freaked out people around me
  • how much fun it can be


Have you read the book? Have you KonMari'd your living space? What surprised you? 

Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World!

Posted on by MK Carroll

Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World: 75 Dairy-Free Recipes for Cupcakes that Rule

I grew up vegan and did a lot of cooking and baking when I was a kid. As a result, I was skeptical about VCTOTW recipes having results that matched the rave reviews, but after trying the Green Tea with Green Tea Glaze, the Gingerbread (with a nutmeg glaze - my own recipe), the Banana Split with Vegan Buttercream, and the Peanut Buttercream, I am sold. And baking a lot of cupcakes.

The Green Tea, so far, have been the lightest and fluffiest. Astounding, especially since one of the ingredients is soy yogurt, which I hate. I find the smell, taste, and texture of every brand I've tried to be vile. Fortunately, I don't smell or taste it at all in the batter or the finished cupcake. These are not too sweet and the flavor is subtle. Lovely!

Gingerbread: just a bit of heat from the big dose of ginger. I might cut the molasses in half and use agave nectar for the other half; the recipe calls for light molasses but I haven't seen a "light" version in the stores.

Banana Split: I left out the chocolate, because I thought it would be too much, and used minced pineapple cooked in brown sugar instead of pineapple preserves. Next time I think I'm going to do the Elvis variation; I can see how this works if you do the full banana split treatment (topped with lots of buttercream frosting, sliced banana, chocolate syrup, nuts, and a cherry), but without the full treatment I thought the banana got overwhelmed.

The Peanut Buttercream was so good I was wondering if I could fit my head into the bowl.