The other day some friends stopped byto drop something off and my husband invited them in. He offered them a seat and then he glanced toward me and suggested we make a fresh batch of coffee.

I looked back at him with my mouth pressed shut and those eyes women make when they’re trying to convey an important message without words, and then I shook my head “no”, ever so slightly. You’d think that since we’ve been married forfreakingever he would immediately know that I was trying to quietly discourage him from offering coffee to our guests.

Instead, he blurted, “What. Is there no coffee? Do you not want to make coffee? WHAT IS IT?!”

And then I got all huffy because he sucks so bad at reading my mind and I said, “We only have ONE coffee cup!” (Which is a lie, because we have two, but my coffee was already in one of them.)

The point is, we didn’t have enough to go around and, in the end, we had to manage with the two appropriately sized mugs and two tiny tea cups which I had recently picked up at a thrift store for 50 cents. All because, somehow, for the three months since we’ve been back we’ve gotten by with only two mugs. That’s just all we needed.

See, our family has been liberated from material possessions twice in last five years – And it was good. It was very good. So, upon reentry to the U.S., we have been really careful not to accumulate a bunch of crap just for the sake of having a bunch of crap. That means we don’t have an extra anything; not a sheet set, not a mixing bowl, and not a coffee mug. There’s room in our closets, space under our sinks, and a few empty drawers in our little house. Some of our cupboards are literally bare.

Yet, somehow, in the last few months, we’ve hosted overnight guests on three occasions, we’ve shared plenty of meals with family and friends, and we’ve opened our home to a child in need. And, somehow, we did it without enough coffee cups.

It’s, like, pretty much a miracle. Like, loaves and fishes and junk…

Yes, we’ve had to get creative. And, yes, we’ve had to call on our community to lend a blanket or pillow or a casserole dish, at times. But we’re learning to live with enough, and when you start to learn that lesson, then living with excess starts to feel kinda… gross.

Don’t get me wrong, we have a few nice things and a chill little house in the suburbs. If you walked in, you’d probably feel like we’re living pretty well. Because we are. Just don’t ask for a toothpick, or weed whacker, or a pancake griddle – cause we’ve been managing without ’em til now, and we’re pretty dang serious about this whole “living within our means” thing.

You can, however, ask for a cup of coffee… if you come alone.

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To be honest, I’m still struggling to figure out what is enough. How about you? Ever wish you could just ditch all your crap and start from scratch


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