My dad spent summer afternoons working in my basement. I’d bring him a snack with a glass of water, and he would shake his head and say, “Where’d you get all this sh*t?” Still, he methodically broke down Amazon.com boxes, put the kids’ outgrown clothes in bins, and made things neat again.
When he died eight years ago, my world fell apart. Yes, there was the deep sorrow of losing my beloved father…but now what? Who would keep my junk in order?
My husband’s early attempts at throwing stuff out always played out like a scene from that show “Hoarders.” I would start fidgeting then eventually screaming, “Don’t touch my stuff!”
I’ve found some useful sites that have kept me afloat. By following the simple routines and missions of the Flylady, I was able to invite company to the house again. I dabbled in Feng Shui, but it seemed too hokey and I never really knew if I charted the areas of my house right.
Last summer, the family did a “10 x 5 project,” courtesy of the Happy Family Movement blog. We gathered 10 things (per person) for 5 days and then donated or tossed the stuff we collected. A painless project with great results.
I am currently trying this “40 Bags in 40 Days” project for Lent. In theory, I work in one specific area each day and get rid of one bag of stuff per day for 40 days. I started off strong–making a list of the 40 areas that I would cover, tying up stacks of saved Travel & Leisure and O magazines, throwing out old travel pamphlets from scrapbooks never started, and bagging outgrown clothes and shoes. To be honest, I haven’t been working every day, but I’m trying.
I think my dad would be proud of the progress I’m making.
So tell me, how do you manage the clutter in your house? What blogs or sites do you follow? Help motivate me with your ideas.