Saturday, January 02, 2010

Yurt People

I can't stop thinking about this article from the New York Times. I find myself obsessing over the technical details of living as a family in a yurt. Like what did they do about diapers? I couldn't rest until I found out the answer. I actually emailed Erin and she wrote back! They use pocket diapers with compostable/flushable inserts. G-dipes. We could totally do that.

But what about that outhouse? Can you imagine going out to the bathroom in the middle of the night in an Alaskan winter? I bet they have a chamber pot. I just bet.

I think what truly inspires me about the article is the minimalist lifestyle of this family. I find myself looking around my room and watering at the mouth, thinking of all the material possessions I could get rid of. I'm currently sitting in my office and I think, of all the books, clothes, knitting supplies, and wedding memorabilia, the only things I really couldn't part with would be my laptop and my passport. Who really needs the Granta Book of Reportage? Or all my old drivers licenses?

When I texted my mom about this story, she was quick to inform me I couldn't move my family to a yurt, not even a yurt with broadband. Obviously, I am not going to move my family to a yurt. But I can strive to stay in this house, even if we do have more children. I thought about this as I was rocking MW to sleep. He doesn't need half the crap in his room. He doesn't need 85% of the crap that we have heaped up in the basement. And Corey and I surely don't need 85% of our accumulated crap (though I dare say Corey has accumulated more crap...I reject my mother's gathering genes while Corey seems to embrace those from his father).

I would really, really feel happy if I spent my free time 1) sorting through every object in every room and making a huge Goodwill donation and then 2) setting up more efficient, thoughtful storage in the basement. I feel so inspired by Higman/McKittrick family! Sayonara, extra possessions. Sayonara, excess/frivolous spending. What positive changes can this story bring about in my life?


Yvonne said...


P said...

It's such a fun word: yurt. Yurt, yurt, yurt, YURT, yurt, yurt, yurtyurtyurtyurtyurt, yurrrrrt. Yurt.

Jane said...


Ellen said...

I'm glad your mother has such good sense.