Tag Archives: Friends

Seeing the clutter with new eyes | Dinner guests

Well, I have a cleared island, and a mostly decluttered kitchen and living room, but I’m not that happy about it.

Can you guess why?

A bunch of the clutter was just moved to a different location.

What is it about guests coming over that changes the way I see? I suppose I see the clutter through their prospective eyes.

We had friends over for dinner on Tuesday (Yay!). So, I started thinking about cleaning up over the weekend.

I got a bit more serious and actually worked on it on Monday with the kids. It seemed like we accomplished quite a bit.

We cleaned the kitchen floor!

And the kids liked it!

 We decluttered and organized the children’s books in the living room!

We eventually got rid of that dirty sock, too.

We moved some of these books to another room, put some in a give away box, and put the rest in one red box that we keep in the living room (you can see it by the fireplace in a picture at the end of the post).

We cleaned out and organized the shoes, etc. that were pouring out of the coat closet!

Yes, most of those shoes were mine! I admit it!

We took most of them to the bedroom closets upstairs, and one pair is heading out the door. We are trying to just keep 1 or 2 pairs each in this closet.

That empty spot is for one pair of my shoes. Just one!

 Monday night I even made a ‘To Do’ list for Tuesday.

On Tuesday, I spent the day working on decluttering and cleaning (and of course making dinner), but it seemed to be going very s-l-o-w-l-y. At about 3:00, I realized that there was clutter everywhere. I was seeing clutter and dust that I hadn’t noticed in….months. It was worse than I thought.

Around 4:30 I started doing bad things with clutter. You know. The crazy desperate clean up. Throw everything into a container and hide it somewhere!

Trash, papers, toys, food….all together in laundry baskets in my husband’s office . Oh joy!

Hiding clutter. Nice.

 And check out this before picture of our fireplace.

There really is a fireplace behind there. For fun, look for Christmas items still there in August!

A lot of this is evil paper clutter that I thought surely I would sort through and organize if I put it right there in the living room!!! Nope. Apparently not.

This next picture shows the recycling that went straight from that pile out the door!

This recycling was just sitting with the other clutter. You know, just hanging out.

And now for the “After” picture. The “After-hiding-a-bunch-of-the-clutter-in-another-room” picture. Let’s try to get excited…

Still not perfect, but much better than before!

I know from my past that I really need to dig into those laundry baskets and boxes soon and not just ignore them. At the same time, I need to maintain the order that I have. I’m not expecting it to be easy, but I am going to fight for it!

By the way, we had lots of fun with our guests!

Do you know what else is fun?

I told them about my blog.

I’m linking up with OrgJunkie’s 52 Weeks of Organizing.

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Filed under Before and After, Clutter, Declutter, Kids

Island Watch 2011

This is Elizabeth with Ready Set Simplify reporting. We have been following this story since March of this year. The disaster on Kitchen Island has been an ongoing struggle for its inhabitants.

Here’s a shot of the island we dug up from January 2011:

Here you can see the disaster continuing to unfold in March:

Here’s the situation by the end of May:

But it looks like things are changing on Kitchen Island.  Help arrived recently from Kristen from The Frugal Girl. She knew of the disastrous situation on the island, and offered to help. Here’s the story.

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OK, I’m losing the reporter bit, partly because I just really need some exclamation points! (See?)

So my friend Kristen offered to come over and help me declutter. Because she’s super nice, and guess what? She actually likes decluttering. We chose the island for obvious reasons! Kristen is not just frugal, she is a lean, mean decluttering machine!

As far as method goes, I think I would say we just picked up each item and made a decision about it. Seems simple, eh?  For some reason, I just couldn’t seem to do it myself. I think it’s the overwhelming factor. Having a friend there really helped!

This is the recycling just from that day!

And Kristen took these things to Goodwill for me (awesome):

Here we are together! Kristen’s daughter. Lisey gets the photo credit on this one:

If I look a little shocked/dazed in that picture, it’s because this was right in front of me:


Photo credit: The Frugal Girl

Woo hoo!!! Is that exciting, or what?!!

Here I am enjoying my island:


Photo credit: The Frugal Girl

Thank you Kristen! By the way, Kristen posted  a picture of our somewhat spontaneous walk to the beach  when we were finished with the decluttering.

Do you have a daunting decluttering project? Getting help from a friend is one way to get it done!

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Filed under Before and After, Cleaning, Declutter