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One month organization challenge

post #1 of 108
Thread Starter 

Would anyone like to join a one month organization challenge?

 

My sister and I started today...she has already stopped and I am moving slowly.  We need motivation!

I have been decluttering for years and do not have too much to get rid of, but my previously organized spaces have become a mess with use and need a good organization and clean up.  I like to periodically organize (like the fridge/pantry before shopping trips or the closets when season change) but I have been neglecting these areas the past year.  And some of these areas are constantly being reorganized...so, I might need to get rid of more 'stuff'.

 

These are the areas I would like to organize by the end of July:

 

#1 the pantry
#2 master closet
#3 dressers, nightstands, and desk in master bedroom
#4 the workshop
#5 paperwork and kid's projects
#6 garage
#7 craft stuff
#8 daughter's closet
#9 kitchen junk drawer
#10 black desk in living room
#11 coat closet (includes gloves, hats, etc.)
#12 car
 

I started the pantry earlier today and I took the photos now - I have a long way to go.

DSC_0167.JPG

post #2 of 108
Thread Starter 

ok...I feel like a bit of a looser being in a challenge by myself redface.gif.

But...putting it out here made me pick up the pace and I finished the pantry.  (I managed to make a mess in the kitchen with items I an donating to the food pantry or plan to use up this week...so I am off to clean up the kitchen.)

 

I am going to try to go back to my monthly habit of reorganizing the pantry on co-op pickup day so I do not end up with this mess again.

 

after photos:

DSC_0170.JPGDSC_0171.JPG

post #3 of 108

I would like to join! wave.gif

I think the best way for me to participate would be to try to do a small piece every day (say, at least 15 min. of decluttering, more if possible) throughout the month, except on the days we will be away in July (maybe 5 or so). It's a busy month workwise, so if I don't do small chunks I probably won't do anything, and some of this has waited long enough.
 

I need to do:

* Office supplies (I work at home)

* Volunteering paperwork in office (3x)

* Craft supplies in office - possible put some down in the basement

* Office closet (major reorganization was done 2 yrs. ago, but needs a "tune-up")

* Hallway shelving - maybe do one shelf/day & find better system for paperwork

* Kitchen open shelves - declutter

* Kitchen cabinet under toaster

* Drawers in dining room (5)

* Drawers in kids' bathroom (with/by the kids)

 

Got started yesterday by arranging to pay my older child to organize some papers for me - she is supposed to finish the pile by Friday.

 

You might like this site: http://www.365lessthings.com/ Also, I have found it helpful to arrange for a charity pickup once a month & just clear stuff straight out to the curb. Thanks for starting this thread!!

 

PS Nice pantry!

post #4 of 108
Thread Starter 

Ragana,

I'm glad to have someone else working on this - hopefully we can keep each other motivated.

 

I'll check out the site you linked.

 

Regarding donations...In the past I kept a box in my minivan and whenever it filled I dropped it off at the donation center right here in town and I kept children's clothing boxes for specific families and gave it to them whenever I saw them.  But the past year I was saving everything for a yard sale for a charity I volunteer with.  This meant I needed to store it all.  The sale was in June, and we are not doing it again so I am going back to my box method.   Sometimes for large items I just do a curb alert on Craigslist.  The Amvets truck comes down our street once a month...but I have never contacted them to pick up at my house.  It is a good idea.

post #5 of 108

Dbsam - Your pantry looks awesome (and super well-stocked)! 

 

I'd love to join in, too. Here's my list for the month:

 

-file/paperwork organization (apparently waaaay behind since I just found paperwork from 2010...)

-DS's drawers (take out out-of-season clothing, reorganize)

-DS closet 

-linen closet

-laundry room

-organize pantry

-organze downstairs/cleaning closet

-organizing media console drawers

 

Not as long as either of your lists, but it'll be plenty to keep me and my pregnant-nesting hormones happy for the month. :)

post #6 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by willfulmama View Post

Dbsam - Your pantry looks awesome (and super well-stocked)! 

 

I'd love to join in, too. Here's my list for the month:

 

Glad to have you join!

 

My pantry was a little more stocked than I realized redface.gif...the mess caused me to over buy because I didn't realize all I had.  Plus I buy in bulk to save a little $$ and for convenience. 

post #7 of 108

Willfulmama - Glad I'm not the only one who finds paperwork from 2 years ago! I file taxes both personally and for my business, so at least that gets sorted regularly. I think I can actually throw out a bunch of papers from the early 2000s and just keep the returns and other important bits since it's been longer than 7 years. This kind of crap plus "sentimental stuff" and general detritus is what is on the hall shelves!

 

Today's decluttering = small, but gave me some peace of mind. I installed my new battery back-up/surge protector for my computer (you plug all your stuff into that instead of into the wall to protect from electrical surges and blackouts). The stormy-looking skies kicked my butt to do this today. So that is one largish box that won't be hanging around the office taking up space, plus I just feel better having it installed.

 

dbsam - I totally want to make dinner out of your pantry!

post #8 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragana View Post

Glad I'm not the only one who finds paperwork from 2 years ago!

 

dbsam - I totally want to make dinner out of your pantry!

I have tons of paperwork too and haven't filed my taxes yet (and I was an accountant prior to being a SAHM bag.gif).

 

I wish you could make us dinner - I hate cooking!   I keep reading the veggie dinner thread to get ideas.

 

No organizing yet today. My husband and I worked out in the yard moving plants and bushes that s/n/b moved this time of year.  But we are having work done on the front of the house and they were in the way.  I was glad when the storms rolled in and forced us to stop - but it got a little frightening for a a minute.  We had the kids and critters go into the basement.

post #9 of 108
Thread Starter 

Ragana and Willfulmama,

Are you organizing?

 

I have not been organizing.  Our AC broke Sunday.  It is very hot here and I am not motivated in the heat.  Two companies tried to repair it yesterday...no luck...so I am getting estimates today to replace the system.  It may be hot in our house for a while so I will be doing the bare minimum.

post #10 of 108

In my own small way! As I said in my intro, July will be very busy workwise, plus we are taking a few short trips. So yesterday after work and before I went to bed, I sorted through a mound of papers on the offending hall shelves & got it down to the essentials that need to be filed. And found a few more matters I need to add to my to-do list (emissions test for car, etc.) dizzy.gif I need to decide what my mini-decluttering project will be today...

 

dbsam - Good luck with the air conditioning!
 

PS I think I am following that "X's on the calendar" method Jerry Seinfeld has talked about - do something toward a goal every day, put an X on the calendar, and pretty soon you will not want to miss making an X, so you will keep doing it.

post #11 of 108

Oh, I so need some motivation! I also need some time. LOL This is a busy month, but really I just need to do something, anything towards organizing our house again. Sigh. I used to be so good at this.

 

Okay, here's my list:

 

~ Put away little project piles in living room; clear off stairs. (I already took care of recycling the boxes from a recent volunteer project before even reading this! :) )

~ Finishing clearing projects from the kitchen table and counter. (These are very small, space-wise, but require time/effort to complete.)

~ Straighten up studio (sewing supplies + herbal remedy supplies).

~ Clear off my vanity in our master bedroom (makeup project I got distracted from + empty bottles & small supplies for homemade toiletries); put away stuff on floor (bigger homemade toiletry supplies).

~ And, the big one....which I may not finish, but would at LEAST like to get started on....my craft supplies in our family office. I have the window nook + part of the closet + one tall narrow Ikea cabinet + the bottom half of the TV shelving unit, yet the floor is overrun with my supplies from an all day crop back in MAY! EEK!

 

If I wasn't more concerned about our main living level (first three bullet points) and sleeping better at night (next bullet point), I could literally spend the entire month in the office alone. It really needs an overhaul. Sigh. I have another all day crop later in the month (YIPPEEE!) and my scrapbook friends have ALL recently organized their rooms/spaces. So out of character for them; and for me since I usually am the most organized of the bunch. LOL

post #12 of 108

No decluttering yesterday unless you count sorting a drawer and tossing the expired coupons... whistling.gif
 

I also revisited an article I'd been keeping about paper organization, which suggests a master in-box and then Do Now, Do Later, and File boxes & a quick daily sort to keep up with it. I think I will try that. I have a stacking organizer with three sections that would work for the latter.

post #13 of 108
Thread Starter 

No organizing here either.  Still no AC...we should have gotten a hotel but I was worried about the animals.  I found someone to watch our piggies so I might be able to find a hotel for today/tonight that will allow dogs.  I had seven estimates lined up this week but hired the first company because they can start tomorrow at 8:00am. 

 

So...my next project will probably be the basement workshop since I need to rearrange somethings down there anyway so they can install the new units.

 

Enjoy your 4th (if you are in the US) and if not...enjoy your Wednesday!

post #14 of 108

I haven't been able to do much of any organization so far. My toddler and I are currently at odds with what we consider "clean." It's sometimes a struggle just to make sure the house is clean at the end of the day.. much less organized! lol

 

Hopefully, though, I'll be able to work on organizing some of these later today. Fingers crossed!

post #15 of 108

I really need to organize my whole kitchen.  I think I'll work on that this month!

post #16 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by willfulmama View Post

My toddler and I are currently at odds with what we consider "clean." It's sometimes a struggle just to make sure the house is clean at the end of the day.. much less organized! lol

 

My children just turned eight and I have the same problem!  I do the day to day things like laundry, vacuuming, etc. and never get to the organizing.

post #17 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbsam View Post

My children just turned eight and I have the same problem!  I do the day to day things like laundry, vacuuming, etc. and never get to the organizing.

 

Noooo! I was hoping someone would tell me it gets better! :)

 

I spend at least two hours a day just cleaning--an hour after I get off work before we make dinner and then an hour after DS goes to bed. Ideally, if there's extra time in those hours, I try to organize/declutter something but lately, it's taken me that long just to undo what he does during the day... and that's in addition to the time my husband puts in during the morning when he's watching DS before he goes to work.

 

Though I don't feel that my house is disorganized for lack of trying, perhaps I'm just going about things the wrong way. It just seems like sometimes, we can't put a dent in things no matter what we do.

post #18 of 108
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by willfulmama View Post

 

Noooo! I was hoping someone would tell me it gets better! :)

Well...we could just be a messy family and I have become sort of lazy...so you might be fine!

 

Really, when mine are in school there is no reason I shouldn't be able to get it all done (I do not work).  I spend too much time on volunteering obligations with a few groups.   I've decided to cut back this year and concentrate a little more on my own family.

post #19 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbsam View Post
  I spend too much time on volunteering obligations with a few groups.   I've decided to cut back this year and concentrate a little more on my own family.

I WAHM, but feel the same way. I cut out my most time-consuming volunteer gig for the fall and am looking forward to earning more by working during that time or being able to catch up on household stuff on Saturdays and then take Sundays off.

post #20 of 108

I think all moms must be time-short. I've found the only way for me to feel like I've got a good handle on the day is if I make a point to wake up an hour (at least) earlier than everyone else. That way, I've got time alone to organize my day, myself and to make a plan for what needs to be done.

 

I envy both of you for having volunteer gigs! It's hard to be able to commit time away from your family and all the other projects that life involves.. So, kudos to you both! 

 

I spent about two hours on Wednesday organizing paperwork. Now, the only bits remaining are odds and ends that at this point, I need to consider if it's something that's really worth saving since I don't have an obvious home for them. I think there's one more paper stash hidden in the spare bedroom, but I plan on tackling that this weekend. I don't have before pictures but hopefully I'll get some "after" pictures this weekend.

 

Not sure how many of you are familiar with Tsh Oxenreider, the author of Simply Organized, but she has a new e-book out called "One Bite at a Time," all about how to get started organizing all those little collections. Though the ebook is only $5, I was happy to see that there was a list of the projects included in the book. You can go here (http://52bites.com/download/) and scroll down a little ways--there's a little chart with the projects so at least you know what is focused on.  Anyway, I thought maybe that would be useful for anyone looking for inspiration or their next organization project. :)

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