- Why can our family of 5 go on vacation for days on end with only one small suitcase each, yet we have extra THINGS that fill our 1,600 square foot house?
- I feel stress when the house is messy and cluttered and at peace when it is picked up and clean. How can I keep it that way so I function as a happier wife and mother?
- WHY CAN'T I FIND ANYTHING? A pen, scissors, craft supplies, a bill that was due 2 days ago, tissue paper for a gift I want to give, that shirt I KNOW I bought for Mandy's birthday 3 months ago, white thread to fix a button, scissors (again!), a flashlight, batteries for the flashlight..... it goes on and on.
No matter the size of our houses, there is always going to be a way to arrange the spaces that is the most functional. The way things were wasn't working. I tried doing "The house that cleans itself" method many times, but never followed through with the steps:
- Pray through your house and ask for God's guidance.
- Get your family on board. I could not have done this big project without my husband's support, encouragement, and strong muscles (he moved the big desk downstairs, Rem's room upstairs, and the craft cupboard into another room).
- Make a list of what clutter collects in a trouble area. Define what needs to go in that space (if I try to re-train myself, if doesn't stay organized).
- Purge. And purge some more.
- Give away. I had so many things I wanted to give to this person or that person. The really important things I put in a gift-give-away-box, the rest I just gave to our local second-hand shop, Help and Hope 2 Others.
- "If it is not serving you, you are serving it." My friend Season told me this and it hit me hard. There are so many things in my home that I have been giving service to, causing me stress, and for what reason?
- Sort. General piles work best for a really bad mess -- mine was the craft cupboard and it was hard for me to keep it general like, craft supplies, pictures, kids craft stuff, school, office, business -- I tend to get stuck micro-organizing and get discouraged when I haven't made progress. I had a friend come help me and she kept me on task!
- Put-away box. For all those things that already have places, but need to return to their home. If you walk around putting them all away at that moment, I'll get side-tracked and start cleaning the grout in the entry-way. The put-away box has been a life-saver.
- Organize each GENERAL pile into catigories, but keep them broad. I've found that I can't put everything away quickly and consistently if things are micro-organized. Use boxes and containers you already have and make a list of what you need with dimensions after you already know what needs to go where.
There are lots more tips in the book and it is a great way to organize your home. I am still in the process and doing things the right way this time. Slowly but surely, I will have a functioning house.
So now for one reveal (Rem's room):
|The floors are painted pine in dark blue and I stenciled a filigree around the edge back before I had children and had enough time to watch paint dry.|
This room is at the top of the stairs and was formerly the "Gun Room." It was storage and Jeff kept his reloading supplies and gun cabinet in there. It also became the catch-all for all the stuff I didn't know what to do with. At a mammoth 6.6' x 10' feet and no closet, it isn't ideal for much. Jeff moved his stuff into the guest room and organized and purged all the "what do we do with this stuff?" stuff. Now we have a guest/gun room -- isn't that normal?
For Rem's room, we needed his crib, changing table, his clothes, diapers, sheets, storage for his "too-big" clothes, "outgrown clothes", and dirty clothes. That should fit in a 6.6' x 10' room, right?
It all fit! There is even enough room to make it pretty -- or as pretty as a Man Cave will allow.
I bought a rug and that was the only expense ($40 for a 6' x 9' rug at Bi-Mart). The tiny room is right above the dining room and we wanted to dampen the sound a little. It works well and cozies up the place too.
I painted and that was more of an ordeal than it should have been. Thinking I could mix white and brown to make mid-brown, I ended up with a gallon of pink paint. The end wall ended up brown, a delicious chocolate color I stole from my sister's kitchen redo. Thanks, Lou! The rest of the walls are just cream-ish. Boring, but Rem told me he doesn't care.
All other decorations were moved from one room to another, downstairs to upstairs. The wall being slanted made it tricky to hang some of the stuff, but I got over it. His room is cozy and warm and perfect for him.
Room number one is functioning beautifully. And that leaves a nice sized room downstairs (with a closet) available for.....
Stay tuned for the pictures of my next project.