Then she got married ... and had son #1.
Then came a house. A very small house.
And then two more sons.
And a lot of stuff. Too much stuff.
And somewhere along the way, our lovely lady lost control.
But do not despair! She will fight the good fight - and she will win.
I hope. Ugh.
We have lived in the same house for almost 17 years. We have added kids and pets and lots and lots of stuff. But amazingly, as we have brought more stuff in, our house has not gotten any bigger. Go figure!
And slowly all those treasures and had-to-haves became clutter.
And to me, clutter is chaos - "visual noise" I call it.
And to put it bluntly...I. can't. take. it. anymore!
So I am on a mission. I am on a mission to clean and de-clutter and restore "visual peace" to our home. Over the last couple of years I have done this in small pieces. A drawer here, a box there...but it was not enough because we just have too much
I have already started. I have two HUGE piles of stuff to put on a rummage sale this summer. One pile in the garage and one in my basement. These piles are filled with stuff that was just laying around our house - not in some deep dark corner of a forgotten closet - but just laying around the house! Crazy...
Now I am getting to those closets and two weeks ago, I cleaned out our very small bathroom closet. I threw so much stuff: expired medicines, broken toys, old batteries, empty soap dispensers, and towels. Lots of towels. In fact, I must have had over 40 towels in that closet. (Why? I don't know why. We don't even use towels - everyone in our family has one of those nice comfy bathrobes.) So after much purging, our closet looks like this:
Now, I realize that you would appreciate my "after" picture much more if there was a "before" picture to compare it to but, alas, there is not. In order to make up for it, and at risk of completely embarrassing myself, I have taken "before" pictures of the other major areas of my current "to-do" list. All I ask is that you don't judge me too harshly. And when I post my beautiful and amazing "after" pictures, you will cheer loudly and post encouraging comments. Agreed? Alright, here we go *deep breath* :
Project #1: Baskets full of a gazillion cd's. Seriously, probably at least over 150 cd's. I need to sort and purge, then get them on to my laptop and iPod so I actually listen to them. (The upcoming 5K is an extra reason to get this done - everyone tells me their iPods keep them going.)
Project #2: Recipes and cookbooks. I love to cook - when I have time and when I am organized. When I am frustrated because I cannot find my recipe for homemade tortillas...not so much. I get cranky and all my motivation to cook goes right out the proverbial window. This is a problem for my family, for some reason.
Project #3: 2 years worth of papers from school, Cub Scouts and other activities. I waited until Christopher was 17 1/2 to sort through all of his papers. I will not make this mistake again. (That "paper guy" looks like he's been just waiting to tell me a thing or two about his current living situation.)
Project #4: The "arts and crafts" area. Now I can proudly say I have actually done some work here. I sorted through a ton of stuff that was scattered all over the house and at least moved it all into one central location. I threw a ton of stuff away and this is what is left to be organized. Once I get it organized, I'll probably be surprised how little is actually there.
Project #5: The dreaded basement. Ugh. Can we just pretend this doesn't even exist?
Actually, once again, this is not as bad as it seems. A huge part of the first pile is more rummage sale stuff and empty boxes. The other part of the pile - and everything in the second picture - is Cub Scout stuff. Why it's at our house, is a question no one will answer. But there it is and I have no clue what I am going to do with it. Maybe once I get rid of everything else, I will be able to find one organized space for all of it. (I can dream right?)
There are no pictures of the garage posted here. And there won't be. (I have to retain some dignity, don't I.) The garage will get cleaned up in time for the rummage sale and when it is not 5 degrees outside. Then I will post an "after" picture and you can just "imagine" how bad it was. *wink*
Thanks for your support - and if you get the urge to help with any of this - you know where to find me.
What's on your "to-do" list? (Or maybe it's a "honey-do" list?)
(For more organizing ideas, I will be linking this up to I'm An Organizing Junkie: 52 Weeks of Organizing)