09 January 2012


I started a blog post this weekend...then deleted it.  I see a theme developing...

Just for fun, I've linked back to a few previous blog posts about organizing, etc.  It's been eye-opening! What's old is new again and all...

It wasn't that long ago, it feels, that we redid our office (again) and I shared with my MOPS group about organizing.  2 years later, I don't feel like I've done much organizing since then!

Anyway, here's the deal:  we started out planning to split the kids' room into two separate areas, change the beds.  Then, we had the opportunity to buy this couch.  Awesome...but the organizing and decluttering just keeps snowballing.  The couch went where the old one was, BUT we decided to clear out the corners of toys and you know, drums and guitars and stuff.  The usual.

You can see speakers and artwork that's in the process of being scrapped (after TWO FULL YEARS of waiting in the tub, a summer out in the dining room, and months being moved between our room and the living room!) in the corner...there are still some things "in progress."  We do live here, I have to keep reminding myself!  We switched the apple crate to the end of the couch and pulled the mini piano to sit beside the red chair.  It's random, I know, but I love it--and it's the perfect height for a cup of coffee to rest!  The red chair looks SO different without all of the instruments piled behind it.  We also took down the big Texas wall hanging, not for any reason other than I wanted the room to feel wide open for January.  :)  After Christmas, less is way more around here.  Looking through old blog posts today, the exercise balls were stacked behind the red chair before we "organized" and put the instruments there...what was I thinking?!

I put LOTS of pictures and frames in storage for now.  My goal is a buffet that I can clean off in a hurry and actually use it for, hmm, a buffet?  We'll see how it goes.

Since I cleared off the buffet, I needed a place for fruits and veggies.  We'll go back to the cupcake tower in February, after that...we'll see!

It's not Martha-worthy, but I tackled the linen closet for the first time in...too long.  A couple of weeks ago, you couldn't even open the door without something falling out!

It became clear very quickly that I wasn't going to get ALL of the books back in the kids room AND be able to give them their own spaces--I didn't want to fill up all of their cubes with books and defeat the purpose of their own space, if that makes sense.  This came to me in the middle of the night last week...we had planned to pass this shelf on, but as ugly as it is, it's serving a couple of purposes here in the hall.  Maybe I can make it prettier...we'll see.  In addition to lots of kids' books, it's holding several antique books that have been in boxes for way too long.  It feels good to get them out!

This is the first time we've ever had any furniture on this little wall by the bathroom...not sure I'm crazy about it, but again, the books have to live somewhere.  We'll consider the hall in progress, 'k?

The more I cleaned, the more I found that NEEDED to be cleaned.  I gave Austin a couple of Noble's baskets from his crib, but I could not find the third one.  It was driving me nuts...then I realized, it was in our bathroom cabinet.  It was full of baby powder, bathtub crayons, random combs and brushes, an old thermometer, Kayci's lotions and perfumes...lots of random stuff.  And you know what happened--once I cleaned out the basket, I had to go on and clean out the entire cabinet.  But, it's cool...

...because I made room for our new towels.  We haven't had white towels in several years, so I'm really excited.  White linens are my FAVORITE.  :)  And btw, neat freaks, you can't really tell, but we also got a new toilet seat yesterday.  Woo hoo!!!!

You're so getting a tour of the little green house today.  Sorry if this isn't what you signed up for...quit reading now!  Anyway, when we moved Noble out of our room and into Kayci's room, his crib took the place of her armoire.  It was full of dress up clothes and toys, so we couldn't get rid of it.  Daddy agreed--reluctantly--to move it into our room temporarily.

Not quite three years ago.

In that time I got the thing totally organized, but still...it was an extra, random piece of furniture in our room.  So when we moved Noble's desk out of the office and into their room, guess what took its place?  Yup.

It's holding coats, scarves, mittens, some hanging tablecloths, and the remains of the dress up clothes and toys.  When we decided to move it into the office, it didn't make sense to move it knowing it was half-full of stuff they don't actually play with.  So...we cleaned it out.  Sigh.  But by doing that, we made room for coats to hang, so, score!  I left the top pretty much the same...that's the creature of habit in me.  I did add a couple of things since the ribbons stayed in our room (makes no sense to put them in the office if I use them in our room, right?).

Moving the armoire magically opened up our room--it was amazing!  But you see what happened, right?  It exposed my desk corner, where I've been ratholing work and craft stuff.  So then I had to clean all that out...but the good news is, I haven't been able to sit at my desk in weeks.  Now there's room for me to work, and I've actually been VERY productive today.  Take that, clutter!

It's a little random from this view, but it works and that's enough for me.  Those plastic drawers are a necessary evil, as are the different sizes (one needs wider drawers [that also pull out for travel] for scrapbook stuff, one needs deeper drawers for craft stuff).  To keep the room open from the doorway and James' side of the room, I pulled my white metal drawers out to make a fake "wall" and put the plastic drawers behind them, with the printer on top out of sight.  Two laptop bags moved to my office closet, two big bags of scrapbook paper and stuff found a new home, and several binders moved to my office closet.  Look, you can see the floor again--for the first time in 3 years.


Are you bored, yet?  We *also* cleaned out the shed last week, which was long overdue.  I won't go into too much detail on that, but let's just say there were several things in there that were too valuable to be sitting out in the weather--we put them in there when (sigh) we moved in, and then pretty much forgot about them or stacked stuff in front of them...you know our drill.  Hence the antique books (cringe) that needed a new home...and we found Mom & Dad's scale.  We've always wanted to hang it but haven't really had a good spot--we decided if we wait for the perfect spot, it'll be rusted through by then.  So, we hung it in the kitchen doorway over Noble's chair where people don't walk.  I filled it with dishrags and potholders, because I have way more kitchen linens than kitchen linen storage.  Especially since (dang it) we pulled a whole box of enamelware and linens out of storage.  We put them there six years ago while we put stuff away and got organized at the house...and that's where they've been, just waiting.  Well, we got tired of the waiting and brought them home.  Our M.O. this past few weeks?  If we don't use it, it's gone.  If we don't want it, it's gone.  If we love it, we find a place and make it work.  It's been an interesting push-pull of taking things out and bringing things in...but taking out definitely wins.  We're on truckload #3, and I'm on Pilot-load #2.  It feels good to donate, share, etc.  James has even decided to put a few things on eBay!

One of the reasons my bigger enamelware pieces were in storage?  No storage.  Well, I remedied that.  It's not pretty, but it works.  It was nice to have access to the big bowl today for Noble's growing starfish, as a matter of fact!

In the picture above, you can see that I hadn't cleaned up the little shelves, yet.  We have those shelves in the utility room (ha!  room is stretching...) that hold lightbulbs, a few tools we keep in the house, outlet covers, superglue, magic erasers, timers...you know, random stuff that you need in the house.  I have straightened these shelves *maybe* once in six years, so this was eye-opening.  We had THREE 4-packs of nighlight bulbs, each open with one bulb missing.  Two packs of chandelier bulbs (which is crazy, we don't have a chandelier!), same story.  So, it was a good thing and this 20 minutes made a BIG difference in the space!  I also got motivated to organize all of my dishtowels, etc. and fold them neatly...they've been crammed in different containers and it was getting out of hand.  All of the seasons were mixed up, even, heaven forbid!  Well, not anymore.  Whew.  That was close.

What's next?  The office, specifically, Daddy's corner.  It's gotten pretty packed, just like my desk area. Poor guy just needs some time and space to get it done...no hurry.  One of the things we've been noticing over the past few months is that we weren't utilizing Noble's toy bins as much as just filling them with crap, so when Mom asked about buying Bubby this trampoline for Christmas we decided it would take the place of the toy corner.  What's crazy is that there are what, 9 bins on a toy organizer--and there were only a couple of boxes worth of stuff to keep?  It was all CRAP.  Dusty crap, at that.  So it was good to see that go.  And since it was going, we also filled a bag with cars, etc. that are too young for Noble or that he no longer plays with, and we passed them along, too.  The toy situation in the office?  Under control, which is pretty amazing after Christmas!  I took down those washers today--they were there for Kayci's artwork over her desk at one point...now they just looked silly.  The corner looks so much cleaner now!

After we clear out and organize Daddy's desk corner, we're going to tackle the really hard things--memories.  We've already begun the hard process of organizing 15+ years of pictures and stuff, but it's time to put them into albums.  It'll suck and be messy while we're doing it, but my Boy and I agreed...it's gonna feel GREAT to be on the other side of that!

Thanks for hanging in there.  I was thinking about this earlier...I always feel compelled to share when we revamp or reorganize.  I don't do this because I think our house is stylish or anything to envy or copy, but because I think it's SO important for every woman to realize that you can't wait to have the life you want until you have the perfect house, the perfect stuff...that's not what's important, first of all, and second of all, if you wait, you'll miss out.  Start where you are with what you have, be grateful, and ENJOY your life.

And every once in a while, stop, look around, and get organized again.  :)

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