Sunday, April 11, 2010

Getting Organized and De-cluttering My House

I've been needing to do something for a very long time. Do you know what it is? It's getting my house organized and de-cluttered. I have to admit that it's not something on my priority list. However, I did some soul-searching and realized that I am an inner pack-rat. My whole family has a tendency towards this. So I developed a plan. Here it is:

1. Start simple. You see, I have so much to do, that I never knew where to start.
2. Ask for help. I have a husband and three kids. They can help me out. It doesn't have to be a one-woman job.
3. Keep the momentum. Once started, don't let it peter-out. Stay with the job until it's finished.

This sounds simple enough, doesn't it? I still didn't know how to get the ball rolling though. But things were taken out of my hands this week with the delivery of a new mattress and box springs for our bedroom. It's a small room and we have a king sized bed, so I had no choice but to do some serious cleaning and re-arranging with the removal of the old bed before bringing in the new. That was the beginning of my organizing and de-cluttering. Here's what happened:

Our bedroom - When the old mattress and box springs were removed from the room, I had to clean under the bed. That led to cleaning out the night stands and pulling down the curtains for washing. Since that left me with room to move around (minus the big bed), I re-arranged the bedroom furniture and in the process, cleaned behind it, plus organized Kenny's "dresser" and mine, cleaned off the little TV, dusted the walls and such, and even cleaned out our closet. I took out all of the clothes we aren't currently wearing and put them downstairs on the extra rack we have until we can go through them later on in the next week or two. I vacuumed the floors, cleaned out the extra boxes of books (boxes of romance novels) that I have accumulated over the winter and either stored them in the garage or gave them away. What was taken out to the garage will either be donated, given away or thrown away. I now have a nice, clean and clutter free bedroom to enjoy.

The guys went fishing on Saturday, which left my daughter and I at home for the day. Since it was just us two, I took her out for breakfast (coffee for me) and asked her if she would help me work on the living room that day. I told her that I wanted to go through everything in it, clean it out, and throw away or give away anything that we weren't using, hadn't used, or just plain didn't want anymore. So here's what we did:

Living Room/Family Room (upstairs) - The first thing we did was remove everything from the room that didn't belong there. That meant backpacks, shoes, etc.. It seems that the living room is the dumping point for the family when they come in the front door. My youngest son is the worst offender. I ended up getting a big basket out and putting all of the smaller items belonging to him in it and then carried it down to his room. He had a ton of stuff we had to haul down. Then we cleaned out from under all the furniture and dusted everything down. We cleaned up the fireplace area and the bookshelves on each side. I threw away a lot of magazines (and I dearly love them). In the end, I had four big black garbage bags that we took out of there. We left most of the furniture where it was since it's hard to change the lay-out with the big sectional sofa. I did the dreaded job of cleaning off my computer desk. It's always a mess since everyone uses it to put the items "they don't know what to do with" on it. It was a long, hard process, but I got it done. After running the vacuum, placing the dog kennels in another spot by the fireplace, and putting out new air fresheners, the living room looks lovely. The only area not cleaned by us was my husbands computer desk and his book shelf area. I'm not allowed there. It's his domain. So I asked him if he would take care of it some time soon. I will just keep asking every now and then until he does it. It feels so good to have a nice, clean, clutter-free area to sit down and relax in. As a side note- I ended up taking several bags of goodies to my sisters'. One was gifted with a bag of new candles, I returned a set of books to my nephew, etc.. I didn't realize how much stuff I had that either didn't belong to me, or I didn't use.

I've been pretty sickly today, but I hope to start on the dining room tomorrow. It's my next organizing and de-cluttering zone.

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