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  1. So, I feel pretty good about my progress in January. Had a week vacation and came home to 29 inches of snow so that slowed me down somewhat. I completed: all kitchen cabinets, entry closet, family room, linen closet, bathroom cabinets, all my clothes, my closet, bedside table, under bed, kids shoes, started on paperwork files. Feb goals: finish paperwork, kids toys, basement storage closet, older DS closet, older DS clothes, start twins' closet/clothes. How is everyone else doing??
  2. I have found quite a few toys, games and puzzles that are now too young for the kids, but I'm hesitating on whether to rehome them. How do you handle this?
  3. I am trying trying trying to get rid of books. We are drowning in books. I'm out of shelf room out of shelf space and out of stacks-on-end-tables space. The worst of it is that I can no longer find a book when I want it. The kids spent all spring losing their school books because of our surplus so it's time to clear out but boy is this hard. So far I've got a stack of 89. I'd like to get to 100 or 150. Anyone else want to try too?
  4. Once finals are over, I desperately need to do a major declutter. I want to do it quickly, or it drags out and doesn't happen. I want it down to "if we're moving cross country on a budget and downsizing." How do I do it? Our school area, kitchen, closets...it's all just too much!
  5. A social group has now been added—"52 weeks to an organized home challeng" (apparently I unknowingly ran up against a character limit, so there's no "e" at the end). I'll be posting the weekly tasks there and hope to eventually add links to the previous threads for each week. The week 14 tasks are now there. It should be easier to generate discussion and to avoid threads getting buried. It's an open group. Please join us! Erica in OR
  6. The day some of the content was lost on the board it appears there was a thread about a "52 weeks to an organized home" challenge, with a link to the site http://www.home-stor...ized-home.html. I was interested in finding the thread to join in and get some support and make myself more accountable for following along with the challenge all year. Wasn't able to find it through a new thread http://forums.welltr...e-thread—where/, but one suggestion was to just create a new thread. So here it is. Join in on the challenge of 52 weeks to get your home more organized, with short tasks to do for just 15 minutes a day. The website has weekly challenges. Next week starts with your kitchen countertops and sink. This week is a prep week, with small tasks each day. At the website http://www.home-stor...nized-home.html you can sign up for email reminders, or just grab the weekly challenge from the web each week. They have a Facebook page too—https://www.facebook...ageSolutions101 I'll try to create a new thread each week for that week's challenge, where you can let everyone know what you've been doing, for motivation and accountability. The January calendar is at http://www.home-stor...ar-january.html. [edited to add: Trying to link again, using the link from their Facebook page, since isn't working for some. Worked when I previewed post, so fingers crossed.] Who's in? Erica in OR
  7. For the "Join us!" challenge thread, see here. Let everyone know how you're doing overall. Threads are also being posted on more of a daily basis for checking in on specific tasks. Week 1 is kitchen organization: countertops and sink. Erica in OR
  8. Hi all! Okay, so the big day is finally here. Decluttering WOOT! Okay, so it's not that exciting. But maybe if we cheer each other on, we can get more done than we might otherwise. I have created a public google doc which you can print out for this week to use. There is a space for you to enter your own daily task as well. https://docs.google.com/document/d/15zkW0eWdGLE7g9m7nIA7KPfEUT-rQqdchCHXgWPgCkw/edit?login=1&pli=1&overridemobile=true For those of you who prefer to just read here, I am posting the weekly schedule below. Remember, YOU CAN DO MORE THAN I HAVE LISTED HERE! I wanted to make it doable for everyone, but feel free to do more if you get your mojo going, just share with everyone how you're doing so we can get motivated too! I know when I get going with a task, I tend to want to keep going, but some days I only have limited time. I also suggest getting three boxes and labelling them as keep, donate and trash. That way, as you go through the month, you can have these three boxes in which to place things you would like to donate, things you want to keep but perhaps need to store in a different area of the house or garage, and things you are ggoing to throw away (this one can be emptied each day so you're not tempted to keep anything :tongue_smilie:) The best advice I have read when you're trying to decide whether or not to keep something or donate is this: will someone else make better use of this item than I will in the future, or have in the past. And remember, how you have used something in the past is a VERY good indicator of whether you will use it in the future. That waffle maker you pull out once every 6 months becaause you feel guilty for not using it more? Donate it. And do you really need 37 coffee mugs? How about the cracked and broken popcorn machine? Remember, simplicity is bliss :D Onto the projects! The Twenty Minute Group Focus is what everyone in the group will try to work on each day. Under the Optional Focus, choose an area you want to work on that is specific to your home and needs. This is obviously optional! WEEK ONE: KITCHEN Monday November 5, Day 1: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Junk Drawer. Remove everything from your junk drawer. Throw away anything broken, useless, or unused over past 6 months that you know you will not use again. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Tuesday November 6, Day 2: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Cutlery Drawer. Go through cutlery and "other" drawers, any extra spoons, etc give to goodwill, wipe down interior completely. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Wednesday November 7, Day 3: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Pantry Day 1. Work on one shelf or area of the pantry at a time, removing all food items, sorting and throwing away any past date items. Duplicate canned goods can be donated. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Thursday November 8, Day 4: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Pantry Day 2. Continue work from day 3. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Friday November 9, Day 5: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Fridge. Choose one section of fridge to work on. Remove all items. Wipe down shelves or remove and wash in sink. This job might take longer than 20 minutes...sorry! Remove all outdated, moldy or unusable food. Organize and wipe down door shelves. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Saturday November 19, Day 6: Twenty Minute Group Focus: Freezer. Remove all items from freezer. Working quickly, throw away all unusable or unidentifiable foods, remove ice buildup from freezer and organize. Twenty Minute Optional Focus: Sunday: Rest.
  9. The kids are at camp this week. This is the first time I've had any extended time without them where I could tackle something like this, and I'm ready to go full speed ahead. But I can already see myself breaking down when making the hard decisions! I was looking around the living room, thinking about what should stay or go, and I came upon my knitting. I only learned recently, but I'm terrible at it, and I don't find it super enjoyable (though I'm proud of myself that I finally tackled it and learned the skill). I have 3-4 sets of knitting needles, and I should probably let them all go. But the "what if...?" is already stopping me! I also get stuck in the, "But this is perfectly good! I might need this someday! I should really have a garage sale with all of this instead of donating!" self-talk, and it usually pushes me off track *sigh* Anyway, can anyone offer some words of wisdom, book suggestions, inspiring blog posts, etc.? Some serious changes need to be made around here this week, and I can't lose steam or the whole opportunity will be wasted. TIA!
  10. All right, if you're working on the decluttering challenge please post your progress updates here! It's been slow going around here this week--we've all been sick, some lingering virus that isn't putting us in bed but is sapping everyone's energy and making the kids grumpy. I did make myself face the bathroom closet yesterday--emptied everything out and starting tossing and organizing. I've still got a big box of stuff that either needs to find a place on a shelf or be disposed of. So how are things going at your homes?
  11. I've been reading the decluttering threads and thinking it would be fun to have a group to encourage and provide accountability for each other in decluttering. Maybe something like the weekly exercise threads? If you're up for it please post here, we'll count this as week one. Whether you're looking to do a major purge or just a periodic clean-out, come join in! I'm working on my bedroom today. --Sarah
  12. I know we're done having children and I should really get rid of all the baby stuff, but I just can't bring myself to do it. :( I have a friend who's pregnant and has said she'd like to buy a lot of my stuff, but I haven't asked her to come look at everything I have because I don't want to let it go. Did anyone else have a hard time getting rid of the baby stuff? Anyone have any words of encouragement that will help me do it? :001_smile:
  13. I want to simplify my life. I don't want to spend unnecessary time taking care of STUFF. Thing is, I feel like we're not super cluttered to start with. We've moved a lot in the past decade, lived in small spaces, and learned to get rid of stuff on a regular basis. But I want to go farther: I would like to cut down the amount things in my life by at least half. I'm hoping some of you here have ideas on how to do this. Here's what I've thought of so far: Books: talk about a challenge! As both a book-lover and a homeschooler, this has to be one of the hardest things for me to limit. I got myself a kindle for Christmas, and gave myself permission to give away many of the classics that are available for free on the kindle. Basically, this applies to any book that I will be reading, to myself or aloud to the kids. I prefer have mostly real books for the children themselves to read at this point. I also went through the children's books and culled the ones that I don't expect them to re-read multiple times. We're keeping quite a few nice hardbacks and some paperbacks of really good books. In some cases I am keeping just a few books from a series (like Little House on the Prairie)--those are readily available at the library, a child who gets into the series can check out the ones we don't have. Homeschool materials--curricula and supplies: ah, another biggie. I've already cut back a lot in this area--I hosted a homeschool curricula exchange and gave away a lot of things that we weren't using. But I still have shelves of history, science, and math materials that I think we may use some day...I'm trying to winnow out the ones that I really, really like and know I will use and let the rest go. And stop buying things I'm not planning to use this year even if I find a great deal on them used. Kitchen--OK, I'm sorting through pots and pans and small appliances, if it's not something I use regularly out it goes--with the exception of a few seasonal items like canning supplies. Not sure yet how to handle the rest of the dishes, kitchen utensils, etc. Bedding--We've moved towards European style beds with a bottom sheet and a duvet, so I'm getting rid of top sheets. I also seem to have a collection of random mis-matched pillowcases that needs to be sorted out. That's about all my ideas for now. If you live a largely clutter-free lifestyle, what do you do? What would help simplify and streamline our lives so we're really only taking care of stuff that is actively blessing our family? --Sarah
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