Monday, January 3, 2011

2011: Better Organization, Really, this time I mean it!

I am a goal oriented person.  Nothing makes me feel better than to set and achieve goals.  My brother and sisters would consider me an over-achiever.  I am a planner, I like to plan out vacations, plan projects, plan meals, the works, but somehow staying on top of organization in my house seems to be just out of my reach.  There is nothing I hate more than going through closets and trying to decide what to get rid of.  It doesn't matter if it is my closet or my kids' closets, so they are constantly overflowing.  It doesn't help that I live in an old house with small closets but I should be able to get a handle on the situation.  For crying out loud, I am well educated and bright enough, I am even a hard worker.  The problem is with a husband, three kids and a dog, no matter how many times I try to organize things, it never stays that way.  I feel like since about the week before Christmas I have done nothing but throw things away.  You would not believe the amounts of garbage we have accumulated.  I am completely embarassed because my husband has become that person who sneaks around the neighborhood at 10 or 11 p.m. on garbage night looking for cans to fill.  I remember when we first got married we would watch out our window as one of our neighbors snuck around in his pajamas filling cans and we would laugh and laugh about how awful that was and now look at us!  Seriously and do you know what we have been filling the neighbors cans with all month?  Rocks!  I am not even joking.  You know all the awful lava rocks that were covering our fireplace?  They had to go somewhere and it was into all our neighbor's half full cans.  Lovely, I know, but I digress.  The problem with my organization is not entirely that I don't throw away, the real problem is junk is continuously coming in.  How do you fix it?  Any amazing ideas out there?  I am bound and determined to work my way through this house and junk more than I have ever done before, but how do I keep it that way?  Here's what I started with today:

For the entire month of November I had to have help everyday with my kids.  I have never been so embarassed.  Friends and family came in and helped me get my kids dressed, but they couldn't even get the drawers open.  Rather than have anyone see the drawers, I would try to make sure my husband picked out clothes for the baby who can't dress herself yet and put them on the bed.  Seriously, pathetic!  So a few days ago I cleaned out all of the clothes for my two daughters and got rid of a ton, boxed a bunch of outgrows up to put in the storage room and I thought I was set.  Now this morning, my 4 year old is complaining that the drawers won't shut, there's too much stuff.  AGAIN!  It hasn't even been a week and I haven't bought any clothes!  Is it just the folding?  Do I have the worst furniture ever (okay, so that could be part of the problem).  Someone tell me how you stay on top of it!

I am absolutely determined that 2011 will be the year that I SIMPLIFY.  Send me all of your tips, PLEASE!


Katrina said...

Hello - I'm Katrina Crane, and reading you is like reading me! Well, when I read my own stuff that is. I do have a few suggestions for the clutterly challenged:

If you want to free up drawer space, pound some nails on the insides of your cupboards. Put all of your measuring cups and spoons in there.

Over the door shoe organizer. Its not just for shoes. It can extend the space of your pantry (I put microwave popcorn, aprons, hidden stashes of chocolate (up high!), fruit chews and a number of other items there...) AND, it can extend the space in your kids drawers by taking out undies (pack 'em in the lower pockets) socks, tights... and perhaps even... shoes. Like Sunday shoes that you don't use very often.

The power of baskets and buckets: if you have shelving, find baskets/buckets to fit. It is so lovely to stack old cds, odd kitchen gagets, or groups of things that tend to be loose and stack poorly and if you should need one, you aren't involved in a balancing act of trying to pull out the penultimate disc from the stack. Just pull out the whole bucket, get what you want/need and VOILA you are using 100% of that space.

Hope this helps! There's also a book called "Clutter Control" that is totally worth it!

Team Beardshall said...

Maybe we should all have a workshop with your mom! I feel that I am de-cluttering about every month! I just have to try to stay on top of the cleaning and then focus a day or two a month to make sure things are still staying good! Let me know if you find any good tips....I am serious about your mom thing!