To review, this month I have been working to clear out clutter. Gretchen Rubin is right, this is definitely a happiness generator. I began this month focusing on clearing out the kids' stuff. The baby stuff is now almost all gone (other than a couple of things that I want to list on Craigslist but haven't gotten organized to do yet). This week, the focus shifted to the kitchen, our bedroom and my recipe binders.
The kitchen was our first stop and to be honest, our motivation was at least as much the rotten potato smell that had just begun from our pantry cupboard. We have a bad habit of buying things that we think we will need without checking whether we actually need whatever it is, leading to thousands of boxes of pasta that are half filled and endless bottles of dh's salad dressing. It took us a good hour to get through it but it filled me with such a sense of satisfaction. The only pantry thing we need to really get to now is the spices. We have little spice jars but they are too little and we also have a spice rack. Now, we are at the point where we have a little jar of everything and then, on top of that, we have leftover bags of spices in cookie tins at the top of the cupboard (and I would imagine that everything is going to taste like curry powder before long). The plan we came up with yesterday, is that we are going to buy mason jars for all of the spices, we are going to label each on the top and we will put them in one our our pull-out shelves. I don't know whether we will get to it immediately but, if it works, it will make the spices easier to fine AND keep them tasting fresh.
Yesterday was a rainy, stormy day and it ended up being perfect for a big clean out of our bedroom. This was fun. Our room tends to get overlooked and I find that when I actually do get some time to sit down and go through it, it's a bit like meeting myself again - I stumble across things I chose to save for one reason for another, I browse through old small notebooks (I am a journaler and list-maker and while I don't write for others' eyes, it can be really fun to revisit myself - my favourite yesterday was a date journal I kept from 11 years ago, when Dh and I went for a monthly date to a different restaurant and film - I can't wait until the kids are old enough that we can leave them with a sitter and do that again).
We started with our closet. This photo does not do it justice but please note the sweaters that are all neatly organized and sorted up top. We pitched at least one garbage bag and have a couple of bags to go to the thrift store.
I significantly reduced the books on my desk and rearranged things a bit so that there wouldn't be an avalanche every time I tried to sit down to write.
We moved the co-sleeper out of our room since LB is now in his crib for the first part of the night and then I join him in the twin bed in his room. We were able to move the nursing rocker, my personal favourite of our rocking chairs, up into our room, since we aren't spending much time rocking anyone these days. It is the most comfortable chair in the house and I look forward to the day that I can find the time to sit and read in the bedroom in peace.
I also finally got around to the dining room. I tend to decorate in there seasonally - I do a big fall display that stays until it's time to get ready for Christmas, then a winter display, then Easter... Well, Easter got left for a LONG time since I got busy with going back to work and then, when I couldn't stand it anymore, the Easter stuff was removed but I didn't do anything to replace it. I finally got that sorted out and now, it looks so much cleaner!
So, another week and the house is definitely much more orderly and tidy than it was a week ago and our yard sale pile is getting bigger and bigger. Sadly, there's only another week in this month and then I have to move on... I hope I can get a few more jobs done because this month, I have gotten such a sense of satisfaction from my clearing out.