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Clearing the Way to Spring: Jan 1/Mar 20, 2013 Decluttering Challenge/Support Thread

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Old 01-05-2013, 08:59 AM   #16
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Good Morning!

Cube set up for back wall.
Cleaned and dusted top of desk and book shelves
Cleaned inside of desk putting like items together.
Purged all files in desk and made new files.
Purged 11 out of the 20 boxes. Filled a 5 gallon trash can. Whew!

I need a break the office space today as I need a "new set of eyes" to see what the next few steps will be.

Clean- Kitchen floor and sweep garage so the dirt/snow/leftover muck doesn't get tracked in.
Vac. and Dust 1st floor.
Clean out frig, clorex shelves and go grocery shopping.
No old or new clutter movements planned.

I am realizing that I want to keep things just to have them. Not to use them, not to store them properly but to have them. I am using my Beck Statement....NO CHOICE, if it isn't useful, it is gone. If I want to keep it, how easy will it be for retrieval. (Change in thought---not for storage, but retrieval for use!)

Off to make coffee, I have a long list today to accomplish.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:49 PM   #17
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Hi

DH is sick and I am so unmotivated it's incredible. The kitchen is a comoplete and total mess: almost all dishes are dirty. Half are in the sink, and now need to be taken out of the sink cause they've been in there too long. The rest sit near the sink waiting to be washed. My stuff that I moved from the other rooms spills into the kitchen area completely blocking the walking path into/through the dining room. My summer craft show tent is there. Where does that go? No idea. I have a short bookcase there. Where does that go? No clue.

Thought I'd get to my studio to do some work but I never made it. I noodled around instead. wasting time and money.

My big problem? Can't make a real decision about this year and where to focus my energy. I think I need to do some more writing on the subject.

I'm going to commit to clearing the kitchen floor today. That's driving me more nuts than anything else.
this means: 1] garbage out back to the bin done
2] recycling gathered into bin done

3]cardboard broken down so they''ll take it done

4]dirty dishes in one place done

5]other stuff moved out of there to somewhere else done

6]one sinkload of dishes done done


Then some quiet time with the whitevoard to try to sort myself out a bit more.

will update my progress.

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Old 01-05-2013, 07:17 PM   #18
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OnebyONe: Using your whiteboard sounds like a great idea to gather thoughts and excute. It looks like you got a lot accomplished in your last post at the studio. Could your tent go to the studio space as it won't be needed for months? What about that bookcase. If not needed can it go to the studio to hold your art supplies? Just thinking out loud with you.

Sounds like your list you have is doable. I bet after you get that done, space in your mind will open up.
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:14 PM   #19
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helping rachel I ended up making room for the tent in the hall and that works for now. I also put the bookcase in the hall and that's ok too for now. Thanks for your thoughts.

It's not so much that I don't have space but it's more that I haven't had a lot of success in getting thigns organzed, nor have ever felt like I *could* do this. I appreciate your support along with everyone else's as well.
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:48 AM   #20
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Hello Declutterers!

The more you have, the more you are occupied. The less you have, the more free you are. -
Mother Teresa


The grand-dog is gone and so today launches a major cleanup. He was a major shedder. It got me thinking that while the upkeep of my home is important that as I continue to post on this "Decluttering Challenge/Support Thread" that I have a personal responsibility to continue to focus on going through things and letting go of items that clog my energy/space.

I like Mother Teresa's quote because it reminds me that I do feel much freer now than when I first started. I need to get back to basics and start letting go again.

My most effective way of letting go of physical items has been to have a designated box where I can put things as I come across them then take the box away when it's full.

Today I will start a new box. It's essential to let go of more clutter.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:14 AM   #21
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The more you have, the more you are occupied. The less you have, the more free you are. -
Mother Teresa

Thanks Debbie for this truth. I woke up this morning and the first thing on my mind was about emptying out. Not to be buried under the things that are of 'low value". I asked my husband to finish the final part of the utility room. Old paint cans, boxes of his tools that he hasn't used for years ect.....I gently shared that if we release our attachment to obsolete, tangible items, our reward will be energy insight and clarity. He worked for about an hour and then took a nap. I had complete empathy for him him as I know this process of letting go is so emotionally draining, until you get in the groove of the reward of doing it. This helps me understand why I avoid doing it.......hard to make decisions--easier to avoid. We had a few good laughs about having carpet pieces that were from the original house 22 years ago. I am realizing that there is an emotional cost to avoiding these things.....being stagnant with unusable stuff.
On to the good news, My daughter brought a friend over last night and showed her my office. I am working on an Art Project that embodies my word for the year....the word is F L O W. Her friend loved the set up in here and DD said, "You don't understand, we couldn't walk in here freely a week ago." I will post pictures sometime next week as I have about 6 boxes to go. When I posted the original picture, I felt embarrassed as the room was so overweight and it was my fault. This is true. I just piled things in here and avoided dealing with them. Kind of like weight. I am realizing after I took 2 boxes to Goodwill, it feels good to release things that have been weighing me down. Similar to overeating, it will not be helpful to bring things back into the house unless I need them. I don't want to clean or store something that isn't useful or needed.

I will end with a quote......

They say that time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself. -Andy Warhol
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Old 01-06-2013, 11:49 AM   #22
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Post this week's mission Jan 6 - 13 KITCHEN

Hello Declutterers

I decided upon waking to *just go do some dishes*. I did two sinkloads. *credit*

My new mission this week will be to do some dishes when I wake up until they are done. And when they are finished, to clean something else in the kitchen, to be decided when I get there. I am practicing MODERATION. Big word for me this year. I want to CONSISTENTLY bring my attention to the areas that need work: work on myself, work in the home, work at work.

I'm going to give myself a smiley of some sort when I have tackled something on my list and then sum it up at the end of this weekly challenge to myself

The work has to be attached to a GOAL and so I will say the goal here is to have a "clean orderly kitchen ready to be used for cooking at any time with minimal fuss", which means:
1) dishes clean and put away
2) counter tops cleaned off and ready for use in cooking
3) applicances cleaned (big job) - will break it down into steps
4) drawers ccleaned out
5) shelves cleaned out
6) top of fridge cleaned out
7) need to make a curtain for the back door -- actually I WANT to make a curtain for the back door.
8) keep floor clean
9) store unused appliances
10) clean kitty bowls and water fountain

That will be a daily to-do for me as well this:

GO THROUGH A BOX, or TWO. Not more.
this means: look at everything, make decisions, put it away, give it away or throw it away. come here and ask if I am stumped by an object. Break down the box if it is cardboard.

Boxes done today: 0

Will update this evening.
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:40 PM   #23
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onebyone, moderation is key for me, too. Creating doable chunks by making lists is such a motivating/inspirational way to move forward with decluttering.

Tami(helping rachel), thank you for the Andy Warhol quote. I really think hearing others' words of wisdom help me to recognize it's not just a few of us doing this....that there are some universal thoughts/principles which embrace this task at hand.

So, via MTeresa and AndyWarhol...there is a freedom which awaits but I/We need to do the footwork.

I talked DH into helping this morning since it was his DD's pup staying with us. He participated as far as getting all the rooms vacuumed which helped me greatly. I am getting better and better at observing his actions/reactions so as I don't push too much and send him over the edge where this process of caring for our home agitates him. I understand that for now I will literally pick up where he leaves off. So he is in the shop now and I now get to make the choices as to where I go today.

Funny, onebyone, I had already decided that today it would be good to pick a room. I picked our bedroom....partially because the bedding needed to be washed because the pup was sleeping on/in our bed AND the cat had barfed on the carpet.
~wash bedding-Done
~remake bed-in process
~drag carpet cleaner upstairs/clean barf area-Done
~dust/put away everything-in process

My sis wants to go bike riding in Denver this afternoon. On the one hand I don't want to go, on the other hand I get some exercise in. I am leaning towards going....

I said earlier that I would put some items in a box for thrift. I need/want to do that.

After I reported that I did current declutter yesterday I looked at my office and there was still "current" stuff. I need/want to complete that, too.

Tami (helping rachel), I look forward to your office pics. Neat to hear of your progress from another family member.

Ok, back to work.
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:43 PM   #24
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Default Decluttering Pick Me Up

I enjoyed reading this from another site. It's not ground-breaking but I find the visuals food for thought.

http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/5817590/list?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=u213&utm_medium =email&utm_content=gallery0
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Old 01-06-2013, 03:16 PM   #25
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Very nice visuals, onebyone! Thanks for posting. The article definitely gives me food for thought. I acknowledge that my home is a work in progress right now. As I am letting go of items that no longer serve me well (and some that never did) I recognize that I am making an effort to keep my spaces clearer and cleaner. At this point, I have no idea exactly what many of my spaces will look like down the road but do know that I tend towards a maximalist environ in some spaces and minimalist in others.

Living room/dining room/office...maximalist

Bedroom/kitchen....minimalist

I have so much beautiful art, from family and other sources. Right now it is all in a specific closet. As I am still finding so much stuff that I don't want/need with rooms in transition I don't have inspiration as to where I would put things. I look at these pictures and understand that the inspiration willl come when the time is right and until then I just need to keep working on letting go and hauling out.

Ok, so I passed on the bike ride recognizing that the trip to Denver was pretty involved and that it was going to be a avoidance event for me. Avoiding the fact that I haven't had a day at home to take care of things since before the holidays and that it's important for me to get some things done.

Bedroom-100% done

Office-working on

Kitchen-needs work

Will take a break and eat lunch.
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:59 PM   #26
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Thank you OnebyOne for sharing this article. I wrote out the questions on a notecard to reflect.

Does it resonate with your sense of style and beauty?
Does it get in your way?
Do the colors, textures and patterns inspire you?
Does it call up warm memories?
Does it give you creative ideas?

Some great questions to ponder while I declutter and organize! I have the following rooms as

Minimalist: DR, Living room and Family room, all bathrooms.
Maximalist: Kitchen, closets, office and new craft room (switching since 12/1)

The saying it gets worse before it gets better is a good description of how my basement looks. I have faith if I keep taking steps everyday, it will look different by the end of January.
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Old 01-06-2013, 07:33 PM   #27
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My basement is pretty rough right now and will wait until after the photo project and company books. I did venture down for the box I pledged to locate and fill with discards for thrift. I pulled two pieces of copper and a cake pan for the box before I even came upstairs. I spen about 15 minutes and filled it with things I could live without...realistically not even miss. A book, 4 CDs, more cassette tapes, 2 needlepoints unfinished, 2 pair of shoes (1 really nice-never fit right)...can't remember what else.
I pitched/recycled numerous things too...hair ties marginally useable, my stepdads boy scout card, pictures that don't matter anymore.
All in al a good day.
It feels good to be downsizing again.

Work tomorrow. I'm glad I stayed home today.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:00 AM   #28
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Good morning declutters!

Debbie, it looks like you had a good day to make some "Space" for yourself since you didn't have to work. I like your empty box idea. It occurred to me yesterday that I have an overweight house that needs to lose a few decluttering pounds. I am heading downstairs to work on the boxes that are left. Not my idea of fun on a monday morning, but I intend to take committed action towards the goal of having a clean office. It doesn't matter what I "feel". If I waited to "feel" like it, I would remain stuck.

Here is my completed list from yesterday. I have added a sticky note to my desktop to keep track of daily movements. I appreciate the following things that I got done yesterday:

Cleaned out freezer.
Wrote out food menu for 30 days, made a shopping list to go with it.
Modpodged my letters for the year: FLOW. I decided since I have the creative space why not use it to make something fun. I also repurposed a picture frame to go with it.
Hung new bulletin and whiteboard.
Cleaned 3 boxes. carried carpet away.

Today I plan to work on the kitchen for 1 hour.
Work on 4 boxes.
Grocery Shop and start preparing meals to freeze.
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Old 01-07-2013, 05:12 PM   #29
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Hi

*credit for doing 1/1+ sinkloads of dishes in the morning. I'm maybe two dys away from done. I haven't touched the rest of my list, but I will. I have been clearing away projects lingering from December so that's good, and my inability to set some goals for myself is also lessening. Things are beginniing to bubble up.

I have a potters' guild meeting tonight. I do the snacks this month with another member. I am ready. *credit*

Will check in again tomorrow.
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Old 01-07-2013, 05:31 PM   #30
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Hello declutterers!

When I came home from work today and saw my box with items to leave the house it was a real pick me upper! As I came upstairs to check in and post I reflected on how much easier it is for me to clean and organize yet the feeling I get when more items go away is really amazing! I will continue to focus energies on "letting go" of items that no longer apply in my life. I will remember that letting go allows someone else to put them to use (perhaps someone less fortunate than I).

Last eve I found a mess on my couch as I was turning in...DH had dropped a piece of chocolate and had apparantly sat on it and there was a 3x3 inch area covered. I was a little ticked and wanted to leave it for him but reminded myself that it would be more respectful for me to find out what it would take to get it off and just do it. I did...it took an hour. There was a possiblity of damaging the couch in the process. credit for not waiting.

This morning I:
made bed, folded laundry and picked up as best I could. I counted cleaning the couch after midnight. I may try and find several more items to fill my thrift box later this evening.
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