Getting Rid of It

Once, I wrote a blog post about having too much stuff. And guess what, here it isĀ  a year later and not only do I still have too much stuff, I have more stuff. Sure, I have managed to unload a few things, about 5 dvds and 10 books and a few garbage bags of clothes to the thrift store, but that barely made a dent. I emptied one of the closets I tend to stash stuff and this is the result:

And that is just the view from the doorway

Ugh.

So. Time to try again. I’m so torn. I could have a ton of stuff gone and just have a donation truck come and be done with it. But there is a lot of stuff. Would it be worth it to try and make any money? Not much is high dollar, so where should I draw the line. I could make some cash, but it could take some time. But. I’m a stay-at-home mom, I technically have time. Maybe I just need to prioritize better.

I’m also having a horrible time keeping up with housekeeping, in part because there is nowhere to put anything away. I figure I have about 15 hours a week of no toddler time, not counting the hours after bedtime because those are too variable to calculate. I’m basing this on 2 hours, twice a week for preschool and 1.5 hours of nap time every day.

What I would like to do over the next 3 months in improve my quality of life – organize my home, make some money and streamline my chores. I also would like to make some time for writing, but that is pretty much just a hobby, so excluding the odd paid post here or there, I definitely need to start making other things a priority during my dedicated task time.

I thought it would be fun to blog my little life makeover, share the tips and tricks I find as well as let you guys know the best ways I find to get rid of stuff. I’m also going to try out some time management apps for both the apple and android platforms. Good times.

To start, here are my preliminary goals:

Daily (by the end of each day):

  1. Dishes done, sink empty
  2. No clean clothes in dryer or laundry basket
  3. Dining room table cleaned off
  4. Drinkv64 ounces of water (I think this will help with my chronic headaches)
  5. Bulk of the toys and books put away

Weekly:

  1. Clean bathrooms
  2. Mop kitchen floor
  3. 90 minutes of working out
  4. Vacuum under couch/chairs
  5. to be determined

So, those of you laughing about what surely must be the deplorable condition of my home need to realize that I do all of these things, just erratically. And I sweep my kitchen floor pretty much daily, I just don’t mop it very often.

Also, we aren’t hoarders. We just have a lot of stuff and don’t like to throw it away. Heh. What has had a big impact though, is that we sold my parent’s house right after we moved into this house, so a lot of boxes of pictures, photo albums and mementos just got shoved in to closets. And we never dealt with it.

The second layer of weird stuff came when we emptied our upstairs to have to wood floors installed and stuff ended up shoved everywhere because right after the floors were done, there was the baby shower then I was working 70 hours a week to try an get my job set up for maternity leave and nothing ever got sorted out. And then there was a baby. Add to that the stuff we got when my husband’s grandfathers died and general baby stuff accumulation and it just ends up a mess. I never made fixing it a priority. Until now.

Obviously the additional component to all of this is that i need to just stop buying anything that isn’t consumable, like food or crayons. I need to get Spence a Halloween costume and I did buy a few decor items, but I’m hoping to craft a bit through the holiday season to use up the stuff I have and not buy anything more. I’ll make an exception if buying one thing (like a wreath form) will us up more things (like skeins of yarn and flowers that I already have).

I also need to figure out how to not let incoming stuff mess up the progress. I need to get preschool to paperless: reading flyers and writing down dates as the stuff comes in, ordering scholastic books right away, etc. It has only been a month and there is a small pile of papers. And the art work – need to figure out how to display, store or trash that, too.

Essentially, I need to get us down to only having things we use or love. I think organizing and purging will happen first, while working on sales, if possible. I’m just not sure if trying to sell things is worth not having them in the house anymore. I wish they had a What Not to Wear for houses.

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8 Responses to “Getting Rid of It”

  1. I had the same problem when I moved into our new house. I packed in a panic, so I packed up the clutter. Then, I moved into a smaller house and the overflow went into the garage. I couldn’t fit a single car in there!

    I ended up just giving stuff away. If I had taken the time to sort through, photograph, and post items online, I never would have finished. Good luck!

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    That’s why I gave myself 3 months. Otherwise I would just stall and shove it back in closets, I also might just quit earlier.

    [Reply]

  2. Kim says:

    I. too, need to re-think how I spend nap times. I always plan to quickly browse though twitter & blogs, but almost always end up wasting the entire time on the internet & then feel guilty about not using that time to clean. hmmmm I guess that’s what I’m doing RIGHT NOW.

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    I think I am going to try having a short list of easy tasks that need to be accomplished before I get online during naptime. Easy stuff like: unload dishwasher, clean off table and something else. Maybe like 45 minutes total, so I can still play around a bit.

    [Reply]

  3. yes yes YES. i LOVE getting rid of stuff. i am such a minimalist & get stressed when there is clutter. cleaning out closets is soooo liberating to me. my rule is either “if i haven’t used it in the last year pitch it.” or, “did i know this was here & if i needed it would i come looking for it? no? it’s gone.”

    do it.

    [Reply]

  4. Alana says:

    I got rid of so much crap I had accumulated over 7 years. Stuff I forgot I had! I was determined not to move stuff I was to get rid of into my new place. So the pressure was on to donate and once I did it felt so much better. I didn’t go through the whole process of a garage sale because in the end the time it took to set it all up, tag stuff, and the time spent on it wouldn’t be worth the money. It wouldn’t be that much anyway.
    Once you start to see some headway you will feel so much better about it! Good luck!

    [Reply]

  5. […] an update on Project Get Rid Of It: recycled 6 pounds of paper, sold 1 dvd, packed up some quilting stuff and used up yarn on the […]

  6. Sidney says:

    Amy, I so understand your plight. You’re going to be fine. Baby steps. You will get there; just don’t give up.

    Do you know FlyLady? she helped me when I felt out of control, and she’s very gentle and helpful with developing routines, and not beating yourself up when you inevitably falter. She can get a little cutesy and preachy for me, but again, she got me out of a hard spot and reminded me that I am okay.

    Although I am not in a good place with my personal clutter saga, I wish you all the best, welcome you to SoCal Lady Bloggers, and if you ever want to talk offline about your challenges I’d be happy to.

    Have a GREAT WEEK, Amy!

    [Reply]

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