PHOTOS: What Does "More Fun, Less Stuff" Mean to You?

by Wen Lee

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What makes us most happy?

According to advertisements, we'll find happiness through shopping, consuming, and spending more money.

But across the country, people are choosing to reject the "Buy More" messaging of mainstream media and instead say: "More Fun, Less Stuff!"

BELOW ARE THE FACES of some people in this growing movement, as well as their responses when asked, "What does 'More Fun, Less Stuff' mean to you?"

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"Changing our vision of stuff from being a central focus to peripheral."
—Mat and Anne in Circle Pines, MN

"I think the phrase reflects how I feel about where my happiness comes from. It doesn't come from more possessions, it comes from enjoying yourself more and having fun with your friends and family."
—Aneeta in Petaluma, CA

"At some point, I realized I was only buying or requesting things I needed, not things I wanted. Save the Christmas and birthday presents - take me to a show or concert, feed me an excellent meal, go with me on a trip or adventure. Give me an experience I’ll remember."
—Cal in Oakland, CA

"Free time to play, create, and explore!"
—Casey in Charlottesville, VA

"Relationships and love over things."
—Esperanza in Lancaster, CA

"'More fun, less stuff' means being free to travel at the drop of a dime...and basically living in coffee shops!"
—Devin in Charlotte, NC

"Room to move! More energy, less cleaning! Free outdoor play! Lighten up - Make room to create! Less stuff for our children to clean up!"
—Karen and the Earth Keepers in Quad Cities, IL

"It means supporting community economics and local artists by hosting and participating in a Swap & Shop party! We went home with new friends and a bag of new-to-us finds. Who says you have to sacrifice frugality for fashion?"
—Charity in Jersey City, NJ

"The less material stuff I have to distract me from the important people and matters of my life, the more I enjoy life and have fun."
—Mylinda in Olympia, WA

"Less stuff means less clutter, less dust, less distractions, and more space. With more space comes more room to breathe and breathing means living, being active, getting outdoors, bonding with the ones you love. And that is way more fun than being a hostage to unnecessary material goods."
—Adrienne in Sarasota, FL

"'More Fun, Less Stuff' is recognizing that magical things already exist and cost nothing to enjoy."
—Dani in Washington, DC

"It means to enjoy life without the burden of excess 'stuff.' Less is more. It means the ability to spend more time with your family and less time on, for example, the lawn tractor you use to mow a typical urban lawn. Reduce, reuse and recycle!"
—Jim in Menasha, WI

"'More Fun, Less Stuff' means truly enjoying the company of my friends with having less materials, devices, gadgets, etc. in the picture, so we can really make the most out of the time we're spending together. I value conversation with substance!"
—Stacey in Oakland, CA

"'More Fun, Less Stuff' means a lot to me. I know that 'stuff' doesn't make you happy. You have to organize stuff, clean stuff and take care of stuff. Instead I would rather just be hiking, riding my bike, walking my dog, taking photos, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, or skiing. (This is a picture of me with Annie Leonard (The Story of Stuff Project). I gave her the sign for her office!)"
—Sophia in Buffalo, NY

"The stuff-free fun is meaningful fun."
—Scott, Leslie, Chrissy, Clara, Keli, and Jorge in Davis, CA

"The less time you spend on acquiring things the more it frees up your time to have fun. Buying things often means working long hours to pay for those things. If you learn to live with less you actually open yourself up to more free time to be creative and to be kind to the planet. To me less stuff means less credit card debt, less pressure to work over time, and more free time to do what really makes me happy."
—Meav in Torrance, CA

"It means more time with friends, family, and the community. Being self-sustainable and creative."
—Johan in North Bergen, NJ

"'More fun, less stuff' means fewer shoes for puppy teeth to chew and more quality time with Faye the Dog."
—Sarah in New Orleans, LA

"At The Light Within Yoga Studio in West Grove, PA, we are all in alignment with the concept you are promoting. Tracey (holding "less") shared a little saying: 'Less room, more window!' Namaste."
—Tina in West Grove, PA

"I made this question an ice breaker at a team meeting and here's what people shared:
-To exercise with just my body, outside and not in a gym.
-Opting for outside adventures!
-Thinking about the cradle-to-cradle life cycle when making large and small purchases. There is no throwing away because there is no 'away.'
-Moving away from being materialistic."
—Renee in Oakland, CA

"Enjoying time with the people who really matter in your life."
—Vernard and Kennedy in Las Vegas, NV

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What does "More Fun, Less Stuff" mean to YOU?
Tell us in the comments below!