Less Cluttered Home: Week 4

You know I love a good challenge. It helps me keep motivated and accountable. There was a cleaning challenge that I wanted to do, but couldn’t get started before it ended! Then I saw Stephanie’s 8ย  Weeks to a Less Cluttered Home. 40 days. That’s it. Go through the house little by little, area by area (which is awesome when you have little kids).

Here is the goal of the challenge: To spend 30 minutes or less each day working on a specific area of the home and to find 10 items to get rid of each day. I’m aiming for 5 items instead because we actually don’t own too much due to the fact that I hate shopping (oh, you didn’t know? :p hehe).

I swapped 2 days. Day 19 and 20 were supposed to be kids’ dressers, but I did our closet/dressers instead. Next week, I will be doing ALL the kids’ clothes! Yikes!

Day 16: Magazines and newspapers.
I’m finally getting rid of some more bridal magazines (After only almost 7 years of being married and helping friends coordinate their weddings! They were all freebies from vendors or events.) And I have lots of free subscriptions to parenting magazines too, so I’m getting rid of a year’s worth. Friends of the Library, here we come! We actually go there at least once a month to donate a magazine or two. The girls were also willing to part with some of their High-Five magazines. We will probably take pages out to send to our Compassion child. No newspapers here, so that was easy. ๐Ÿ™‚ Most of the new magazines that I get, I pass on to someone else after bookmarking the articles online onto my Pinterest boards.

Day 17: Decorative items in living areas (living room, family room, dining room, kitchen).
I have no sense of style whatsoever so our home is not really decorated. We have no decorative items in our living area. :/ We actually need to do the opposite of declutter for this part.

Day 18: Furniture. Walk through the house and, room by room, assess whether there are unnecessary furniture items that can be removed. Either move them into your “stuff” storage area today OR make a list of the items that need to be dealt with as you prepare for your garage sale, donations, etc. at the end of the 40 days.
We’re cheap “frugal” so we don’t have unnecessary furniture items. Bummer for the burglar who breaks in to steal our stuff…ha! We don’t have anything of value. Just beds, kitchen table/chairs, desk, other various chairs, a bench, a glider/rocker, and a couch….and a crib that REALLY needs to be put away since it hasn’t been used in over a year and a half!

Day 23: Clothing – Master bedroom closet.
Day 24: Clothing – Master bedroom dresser(s).
So, have I told you that I really hate shopping?! No? Well, I do! Once I buy something, it becomes my favorite article of clothing, and I pretty much wear it until it has holes. Sometimes I wear it even if has holes…only if you can’t really see them. Even through college, it would drive my mom crazy and she would still buy stuff for me. Anyhow, I went through my closet and dresser, and I’m donating 20+ items!…and yes, some of it is from college days, which was 10+ years ago!!! So, now I’m left with limited choices. Who wants to teach me to thrift? ๐Ÿ˜‰ Norm is pretty good about getting rid of an item once he buys something new, but he was still able to get rid of a few items…old basketball jersey, sweater, and some old pants.

It’s not a huge difference, but you can see we took the extras out…there were bags of hand-me-downs from my cousin for the girls, but it won’t be another 2 years before Melody can even fit the clothes. Moving it into the girls room to work on this week… I have too much black and gray clothes. :p The huge hamper came as a set as a wedding gift. It currently holds maternity clothes.



Declutter pile

To review, here’s my goal: declutter 5 items a day. Cleaning and organizing will come after the challenge is over. ๐Ÿ™‚ Please don’t judge the cleanliness and organization of my home yet. :p

I found a cleaning challenge to do after this decluttering challenge ends! ๐Ÿ™‚ And once that ends, I also found an organizing challenge. They are past challenges, so I won’t be participating at the same time as anyone (like this, the decluttering is going on right now), but if anyone wants to do them with me, let me know!!!

Less Cluttered Home: Week 3

You know I love a good challenge. It helps me keep motivated and accountable. There was a cleaning challenge that I wanted to do, but couldn’t get started before it ended! Then I saw Stephanie’s 8ย  Weeks to a Less Cluttered Home. 40 days. That’s it. Go through the house little by little, area by area (which is awesome when you have little kids).

Here is the goal of the challenge: To spend 30 minutes or less each day working on a specific area of the home and to find 10 items to get rid of each day. I’m aiming for 5 items instead because we actually don’t own too much due to the fact that I hate shopping (oh, you didn’t know? :p hehe).

My week was a little different than usual, so I didn’t get around to as much decluttering as I would have liked, but we are still getting some things out of the house. ๐Ÿ™‚

I combined all the book days into one day.
Day 11: Childrens books – Day 2 (diaper bag/purse declutter if a 2nd day is not necessary)
Day 12: Adult books – Day 1
Day 13: Adults book – Day 2 (fridge cleaning/organization if a 2nd day is not necessary)
I was really putting this off because I’m a huge bookworm. We have gotten a ton of great hand-me-down books from a church friend a few years ago (almost 200 books to be exact), so I wasn’t attached because of the cost of the books, but the girls seriously like to read all of them. It was tough, and I had to have them help me, but we did decide on a few. Ironic, but they were pretty much replaced (the children’s books anyway) with book prizes for the summer reading programs that we are participating in.

And here is the weird mix of books we are passing on. Please don’t ask me why I still have bridal magazines after almost 7 years of being married! (And I got a head start on magazine decluttering day!)

I actually randomly ended up doing the fridge one. This is how our fridge looks every Friday because we buy for each week, eat it during the week, and then have C.O.R.N. (clean out refrigerator night) by Friday or Saturday. This time I wiped down the drawers too, and made sure to get rid of any expired food/condiments.

Day 14: Medicine or vitamin/home remedies cabinet or cupboard. You could also tackle your First Aid kit on this day.
I did the medicine area of the cupboard when I did all the cupboards, so the girls helped me to go through the first aid kit. We do need to purchase a few things. We also have first aid kit in our car as well. If you don’t have a kit, you can check out THIS LIST to see what you need to buy.

The medicines and vitamins are on the middle shelf.

Day 15: Children’s art work, certificates, special notes or cards, etc.
This one is going to be really hard, so I’m saving it for the end.

To review, here’s my goal: declutter 5 items a day. Cleaning and organizing will come after the challenge is over. ๐Ÿ™‚ Please don’t judge the cleanliness and organization of my home yet. :p

Less Cluttered Home: Week 2

You know I love a good challenge. It helps me keep motivated and accountable. There was a cleaning challenge that I wanted to do, but couldn’t get started before it ended! Then I saw Stephanie’s 8ย  Weeks to a Less Cluttered Home. 40 days. That’s it. Go through the house little by little, area by area (which is awesome when you have little kids).

Here is the goal of the challenge: To spend 30 minutes or less each day working on a specific area of the home and to find 10 items to get rid of each day. I’m aiming for 5 items instead because we actually don’t own too much due to the fact that I hate shopping (oh, you didn’t know? :p hehe).

Day 6: Kitchen “other” – Water bottles, reusable bags, lunch boxes and containers, cleaning supplies, anything else you store in the kitchen that isn’t covered somewhere else on the list.
What to do with that empty space…I could easily get rid of that top shelf too……

Much better!

Below the sink.

It pretty much looks the same except for the chicken broth I moved over.

I couldn’t think of what else to get rid of, but these are our other cupboards.

We have one completely empty one. It used to have toys that the girls played with when I was cooking, but that was when they were younger.

And there’s cupboards above the fridge, but I can’t get to them, so nothing is there. And the same thing with the tiny ones above the sink area which I don’t have a photo of.

Day 7: Kitchen cookbooks and recipes.
I did this one way back in 2009 for a challenge that the OrgJunkie had, so I didn’t do much for this day, which worked out because I was sick (along with the girls)! All I did was move the cookbooks previously in the girls’ room because the bookcases are in there (because it used to be the office). ๐Ÿ™‚ And I also rearranged a few things on the counter a little bit. Sorry no before photos.

Day 8: Videos, DVDs and CDs.
Most of these are Norm’s so I’m delegating this one out to him, but I don’t think much will change. We don’t own a TV, so we also don’t own too many DVDs. We check out a lot from the library, so they get returned after 1-3 weeks. The surrounding mess that you see will be cleaned up soon!!

Day 9: Your desk or work area. This might not be an actual desk, but wherever you keep your files or important, notepaper, or take messages if you don’t have a desk.
I did one back in 2009 for another OrgJunkie challenge, but you know, papers happen… I’m so relieved to have this one done!!!! Piles are not conducive to my productivity.

Breathe a sigh of relief with me as you look at these photos.

There are still a few things I need to work on but overall I’m happy with the results. ๐Ÿ™‚ And Melody was especially happy about it too.

Day 10: Childrens books – Day 1
We are working on this one, but we have until Monday to finish, so I will show results next week. It will not drastic decluttering because we are HUGE BOOKWORMS around here!!!! The girls did already choose some books to pass on to others, maybe for Operation Christmas Child?

To review, here’s my goal: declutter 5 items a day. Cleaning and organizing will come after the challenge is over. ๐Ÿ™‚ Please don’t judge the cleanliness and organization of my home yet. :p

Less Cluttered Home: Week 1

You know I love a good challenge. It helps me keep motivated and accountable. There was a cleaning challenge that I wanted to do, but couldn’t get started before it ended! Then I saw Stephanie’s 8ย  Weeks to a Less Cluttered Home. 40 days. That’s it. Go through the house little by little, area by area (which is awesome when you have little kids). It definitely helped me to stay focused this first week.

Here is the goal of the challenge: To spend 30 minutes or less each day working on a specific area of the home and to find 10 items to get rid of each day.

We actually don’t own too much due to the fact that I hate shopping (oh, you didn’t know? :p hehe). Most of the stuff we have in our home are either hand-me-downs or gifts…or the girl’s crafts/knick knacks from carnivals and parties and such. I’m not to the point that I want to get rid of it all, so I’m aiming at a goal of 5 items out of the house each day instead.

Day 1: Kitchen drawers – Cutlery and cooking utensils.
We have another “real” set of silverware, and we do use it on a regular basis too.

Before: I think we got 3 sets of cooking utensils for our wedding. That big container was sitting next to the stove, but I rarely used any of the stuff. After: I had found an old Pom container and used that instead. What I use weekly –> Pasta spoon thingie, soup ladle, and 3 for $1 Ikea set from my parents. (I didn’t completely get rid of the whole container. Some items are leaving our house though.)

Day 2: Kitchen cupboards – w/ eating dishes (plates, glasses, china, wine glasses, etc.) and storage containers (like Tupperware or Pyrex containers).
Before and After. I’m working on use other methods to store our food, so hopefully by the end of the year, we don’t need most of this. At Thanksgiving, 75% of the containers are used to store leftover goodies for guests, but then, it starts over again.

My 5yo saying, “Who needs all these plastic storage containers?”

Day 3: Kitchen cupboards – w/ cooking items (pots, pans, casserole dishes, baking trays or pans) & small appliances (blenders, food processors, toaster ovens, etc.).
I forgot to take a few Before pics. If it looks like there’s even more stuff in the cupboards now, it’s because there is. I took all the pots and pans out of the oven. Now I don’t have to remove everything when I want to bake something! ๐Ÿ™‚ Got rid of a pot and other various things, and it is more organized.

Day 4: Kitchen drawers – Any junk or miscellaneous drawers.
I had swapped days because I knew I would need extra time to work on this one, but it actually went by pretty quickly. Again, the drawers don’t look that much different because we don’t own that much stuff (or maybe we do…it’s all relative, right?) and we actually do use most of what we have on a regular basis. This is our tea/drinks and baking/cookie cutters drawer.

Yup, those are Kirkland tissue boxes. :p We try to use shopping totes as much as we can but we do forget them sometimes.

Where we put all the kids’ sugary stuff from holidays and parties…the marshmallows are for Rice Krispy Treats. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Snack overflow

Snack drawer – It usually looks better than this. I guess we just had a random assortment these days.

Did you know we like corn? This is our backup veggie on weeks when we go frugal and don’t buy groceries and eat from the pantry (and we don’t have an actual “pantry” thus the cans in the drawers (worked out better than having them in our cupboards for some reason)).

Trying to eliminate plastics/foil from our life, but sometimes it still comes in handy.

Pastas and canned fruits (I’m not a big fan but everyone else seems to enjoy the syrupy goodness.)

Other random cans…

I haven’t gotten the motivation to tackle this drawer yet. It has random items from the top of our kitchen island that we clear off when we need to put stuff on top of the island.

This drawer holds coasters and our table talkers.

Haven’t found another home for this, so it stay here.

This is our Ramen noodles stash (that needs to be replenish). I know, it’s not good for you. It’s one of our few guilty pleasures.

I don’t even know what to say about this one. :p I don’t grab any extras when we go out to eat, but somehow, these always end up in our home. It was overflowing. Again, organized with Kirkland tissue boxes. :p It was a good sorting lesson for the girls: chopsticks, forks, spoons, straws.

Day 5: Kitchen linens – Dish towels, cloths, rags, oven mitts, napkins, tablecloths, placemats.
Not much difference here, but I got rid of a few extra plates and a kitchen towel, and straightened things up a bit. We don’t own any tablecloths or placemats, so we’re good in that department.

Overall, it doesn’t seem like much, but we are decluttering a little, so it’s a start!!! And if it still seems messy, it’s because it is. I’m focusing more on the decluttering first, and will get to cleaning later. ๐Ÿ™‚