Step One: Prep. Clean, clear, minimize, purge. Create functional spaces and get rid of excess and get rid of junk. Create an environment that will have more ease of maintenance. Lots of good will runs and filling the dumpster will happen in this step.
We’ve been at this the whole time we have been in California. We tried really hard to thin down our belongings in Texas, but ultimately we moved from a 3600 sq ft house into an 1800 sq ft house. We are still stuffed in to the gills.
The big tasks items are:
The game plan is to determine what is needed, what is wanted, what is wasted, and what wastes time.
Clothes. We spend a lot of time doing laundry each week. We have three children five and under, that alone is tough. They dirty everything, they change their clothes ten times a day, they throw their clean and dirty clothes together, they are just a bunch of assholes when it comes to having a clean house. We are about to be a family of 9. I’m almost to Duggar family status needing a whole laundromat in my laundry room.
I’d like to say it’s as simple as 4 pairs of pants, 7 shirts, etc. But the first step is to remove all the holey or stained items, and things that no longer fit. Then as we put it in the drawer I will be able to see how much is left. If their clothes can’t fit in one drawer, I’m thinning down. The older kids I give more leniency too– not only are their clothes bigger, but the older two are near their adult sizes.
Also on the agenda are under the bed boxes for out of season items. Less stuff in their drawers and closets means less stuff going in my laundry. I can’t even begin to tell you how much pain this causes me. We have children that will dirty the most random things. Like, hey, we haven’t been in snow for five years, why are there snow pants, hats, and gloves in the wash? “uh… I got cold.”. WTF?
Bedding. How many freaking sets of sheets do we need? I don’t even know where they all came from! I think I have found 4 crib sheets and we don’t even have a crib up yet! I have kept some extra blankets around for sleepovers, family, cuddling on the couch, I’ll need to figure that out because this house lacks storage.
Kitchen. This is SO tough. I’m a cook. And I pretty much run a restaurant with the number of mouths I feed. But I succumb to impulse buys. I have a random apple core remover so that I can make donut shaped apple slices. I think I’ve used it twice. I have a smaller kitchen. I don’t need multiple sets of everything. Because it turns into the same problem as the laundry. It’s in the sink and instead of washing it more quickly I buy another and now I have two in the sink. And on that note… I love my sink. I originally wanted a 60/40 sink and I am SO glad I went with one basin. Thanks for all the input on that one. But, back to work. Sort. Purge. Organize. LABEL. For F’s sake, I need to label. True story, I was nearly killed two weeks ago. I was removing a plate of the top shelf of the cupboard and a heavy glass 4-cup measuring bowl nearly got me right on the head. Ok, maybe killed is an exaggeration. But swear words were yelled at said teenager that I knew did it. Label the damn spaces where shit maybe even draw a map with photos for the kids.
After the sort and purge, I’d like to organize the spaces, get stuff off the counter. We’ve been drinking less coffee. By less I mean, maybe once a week and usually through a fast food window. It’s time to put our huge espresso machine up. More tea for me in 2018.
Toys. The mother effing toys. We sorted in Texas TWICE. We’ve sorted here once. Where the hell do they come from? We were SO careful over Christmas. Is it going to last, is it junk, is it something we are going to step on? But their toys must breed in their bins or something. I want to get rid of a lot of the plastic junk. I read that the fewer toys they have the more they will use their imagination. I want quality toys that will last. Wood. Natural. Things to build. Things to explore. Less commercial bullshit. And for F’s sake, the legos need a new solution. Like, maybe a box in the garage we pull out once a year when we have forgotten how annoying they are. I want to take the toys down by half. And we’ve started a new rule, either they put it away, or I put it in the good will box. It’s been highly effective.
Not on this list is the garage. Because I legit have post-traumatic stress from going in there that I haven’t been out there in months. I’d say I’m exaggerating, but I spent about three hours while bending over my pregnant belly cleaning, clearing, vacuuming, organizing, putting tools away. And about a week later I went out and had a mental breakdown. Then we had a medium rodent infestation. I say medium because we’re not really sure WHAT animals were coming in at one point. But it’s just become a scary place in my life. So I’m not willing to admit we have a garage until it’s safe out there.
But IF I were to have a garage. I would say I want
- an organized section for holiday items.
- a clean laundry space with organized shelves for cleaning products and a clean laundry table.
- a clean workout area with vacuumed and mopped mats
- all tools in their rightful place
- all trash/broken furniture/empty moving boxes removed.
And if you’ve actually read this, God Bless you. lol! I blog for me. For accountability. And for some resemblance to a social life.