Farewell

15 Apr

Farewell.

I imagine you probably knew this before I did. It seems pretty clear now, the trickling off of posts from daily to weekly, to ones like, day 223-day 241 may have been my first clue. The long, thought-out posts with a definitive direction, some humor or good music over time slowly became the three sentence wrap-up so I could get to Dancing with the Stars in time. The time from when my thoughts throughout the day were formed into clever anecdotes I could relate to the blog slowly morphed to the time when my thoughts of the blog dwindled to the 15 minutes before my fingers hit the keys. Writing it out, well, it really does seem clear now for even me to see.

I am finished with this blog now. The project is complete.

I am ready to do some new things. I want to write for my children and my family— their stories. I already write one minute wrap-ups of the day (when I think of it). I have a little folder on my desktop to remind me to do it. When I read through those I am so amazed by the little things I forgot about that happened maybe only two or three weeks ago. It brings me such joy when I rediscover them by reading back through them. It’s a little alarming and sad too, to realize how much I lose so quickly. I want to remember those things. I want to remember the time when Zoe dropped trou. in the middle of the sidewalk to practice her new potty skills. I want to remember the cool pizzeria birthday party Elliot went to where all the kids played pinball ’til every last adult had fished the last of their quarters out of the dusty bottoms of their purses or pocket. Sometime way in the future, I want to remember that this was the time of my life that a solo trip to the laundromat was so exciting because I got two uninterrupted hours of blog writing time. I think I might miss that feeling someday and I want to remember some of that little cool stuff. I would remember some of it, but I’m greedy, I want to have more little snippets of the past to recall someday.  I want to write more of that for us. I still have half-finished scrapbooks and half-finished Snapfish albums all over the place that I would like to set final details in before those little things are just gone to me.

Before I go I would like to share some of the amazing things that have come to me through this blog over the past year. It’s not the comments or hits from interesting places like Argentina or Botswana (although those are nice). It’s not the requests from advertisers or the features on fabulous blogs (again, I’m not complaining). It’s getting my voice across, being heard, and getting feedback that people like it and think it’s funny or inspiring (that is still hard for me to say) that moved me the most. It makes me blush to even type it. In real life, one or two sentences into a conversation I put my giant foot in my even bigger  mouth. Ah, the power of the delete key.  And, although I wouldn’t exactly say I am shy, there are times when I feel intimidated and can’t get my mouth to say what I want it to without saying too much or too little.  I fear that my opinion will offend or the words will just be wrong.  I often worry that I am dominating conversations too much or not saying enough. Writing releases me from that awkwardness and lets my words be what they wanted to be all along.

I know that sounds a little high-falutin’ for a humble decluttering blog, but in that I see a small kernel of an opportunity. I won’t be writing a blog about decluttering anymore, but what more could I write about? What if I could write my point of view about other things and be heard?

By far the most important thing I have gained from this year of writing is friendship; true, deep friendships with new and interesting fan-freakin’-tastic people all over this globe. It astounds me that I can hit publish here in Virginia and within minutes have a response from someone living their life in Georgia, Maryland, Australia or Finland having the same problems and enjoying the same things I do.  Also, those people I see day-to-day: moms from play group, people from the gym, old school friends, even my mom;  they tell me they laughed so hard when I write things like the time I wrote about the farter in yoga class when I gave up my yoga mat, or what to really expect from a toddler when I tossed that book out the window. It has brought me closer to them too.  Did you know even the guys at my husband’s work read from time to time? When I first started they were all over this blog telling me where I should put my ads and what fonts I should use and how wide my columns should be. Scott came home with a list of notes almost daily. It’s  pretty awesome to have a bunch of dudes get excited over your housekeeping blog. One of them even asked me for tips on clearing out his closet mid-way through the year. Cool. It’s really cool is about the only way I can sum that up.

Oh, and my house is really decluttered too, but really, turns out, that is about the least important of all of it.

I have so much to be grateful for to this project, that is why it was really difficult to decide to bring it to its close.

There is no way I could ever stop writing. I never thought to do it before this blog and I could never think about stopping after. It was love-at-first-type. It is so a part of me, to stop would be like cutting a finger off or poking out an eye. Ew, those are some gross analogies, but you get my point.  I have to do it. I don’t just want to, I have to. So although this is farewell to DeclutterDaily.com, it is not goodbye. I don’t know where or when I will pop back up in the blogosphere, I suspect it will coincide with the beginning of preschool for my youngest child, but I know I will. And, it’s you that I hope comes along. When I do pop up again whenever it be, I will post it here for you to know.

One last note of business, if you want some good, solid decluttering advice, here is where I go: 365lessthings.com. Coleen has done what I have done. She write really good advice daily, she is easy to read and she gives feedback to everyone.

If you want a good decluttering laugh, go here on Wednesdays.  unclutterer.com   Just go. Trust me.

Thank you.

Thank you so much.

Thank you for reading.

Thank you for making me laugh.

Thank you for encouraging me.

Thank you for making my blog important.

I can never say thank you enough.

A Brief Interlude Between Seasons

25 Mar

Did you think I forgot about Declutter Daily?

Well, I didn’t.

I actually started my first post of season two tonight, but then I realized I wanted a new heading, and maybe a new quote up there, and maybe a new about page. Then I realized what I wanted was a bit more than I could achieve in one night, especially one night that happens to coincide with the Mad Men final season 2-hour premiere. Priorities – I have ‘em.

I know you so love seeing my stuff though.  I’ll give you a little peek at what has been leaving the house in preparation for putting our house up for sale. YES! Putting our house up for sale, is what I said!

Declutter all my stuff for a year to better fit into my small house; buy a new, bigger house to move into. That about sums it up.

Oh well, my husband is psyched that we have a lot less to pack and haul. Win. Win.

After Photo of Shelf in Garage

No before photo of course. I never really think to take pictures of my mess. Go figure.

After I Tried A Little Harder

After I Tried A Little Harder

Day 365 – That’s All She Wrote

23 Feb

So, it’s here.

I’ve met my goal of decluttering something a day for 365 days. It feels like an occasion on which I should reflect. I guess that’s what I’ll do.

I decided to start by going back and reading my About This Blog page (which I have never changed). Not to sound to goofy but, it was all there all the time. To quote myself, (Oh lord, seriously?)  ”This blog was born out of the idea that if I let go of some extra stuff around the house, things might be a little more simple.  I even might be able to enjoy the stuff that is left a little more. The gist of it is, I am going to toss something everyday for a year and see if things lighten up around here.”

Things are simpler. I don’t spend much time putting things away at night. Ten minutes usually does it. I love sitting to watch T.V. in a clean room with no dirty socks on the couch or microscopic toys to step on. Why DO they make the toys so small? I don’t spend time rearranging piles of stuff to fit in limited spaces. I can usually see the top of my dresser. Nine times out of ten I have counter space available to cook. Not bad.

My desk is still a mountain of papers, a tribute to hoarders. Some things will never change. But still, not bad overall.

I do like my stuff more, the stuff that is left anyway. I can see the stuff I like and enjoy it. It’s not buried.  I really don’t regret getting rid of any of it. Now and then I do for a moment, then it’s gone. I can’t even remember anything at the moment that I wish I still had.

I have way more time. Shopping (still conquering this one)  and rearranging take copious amounts of time. Now I have lots of time for Words with Friends, Pinterest and US magazine. :) Uh, I mean, playing with the kids and cooking nutritious meals. Seriously though, this might be the most surprising benefit and the one  I love most.

Things have lightened up. That is for sure.

So on to my last declutter:

Once upon a time I would have packed these up in a box to save forever. Now, I think, ” Well, she only fit in them for six weeks, half the sparkles have rubbed off and they will look terrible and yellowed in 10 years if I save them.”

Off they go.

And that’s about it. This project is done…

ish.

I’m not going anywhere. I am taking a break, to work on updating my blog and getting the new one off the ground, but in 3 weeks, I’ll see you right here, ’cause there’s still the attic, and have you seen my garage since Christmas? EEK! There is the kid’s closets to deal with, and all those stuffed animals, and the cabinet under the sink, and the back of my van, and the backyard, and the desk (oh the desk)…and…and…and…

It seems there is still quite a way to go.

Thanks for reading my blog. I hope you liked it.  It has been a ton of fun. I hope you come back for  season two, which is where you will see the before and afters.

Until then.

Megan

 

Day 364 – What’s Left

21 Feb

Someone had the great idea that I show some of the stuff that made it past my year o’ decluttering. That Jen Hoff, she’s full of great ideas. Anyway, I really liked that idea so today, this second-to-last day of my project, I will not be showing you my cast-offs but rather what made it through. And, well, I guess I have to show you at least one cast-off.

I hope that you’ll see from what’s left, that  I am not, in fact, a heartless shrew that throws everything of meaning out the door. Quite the opposite, now my most precious things shine through.

My stuff

The first thing anyone does when they come in my house is show love to the bird. People love this bird. I’ve had to remove it from purses walking out the door. I kid, sort of.

The Bird Back

I know this bench has shown up in a post or two, but did you know it can be a table too. I love my bench.  I do.

The next few things are pictures on my walls. They really reflect my likes and style and they don’t take up any space, so they all stay. Win. Win.

Some one made this picture for my dad in the 60′s. It is different from everything else I have, none the less, I love it.

Shells of North America Print.

I don’t think this was meant to be art. I think it is a science room chart, but I loved it and it hangs in my house.

I love this print.

This is a portion of a painting made for us on our honeymoon in Key West, Fl. . It spells out our last name.

This is entitled Alice in Wonderland and it is hanging in one of Norfolk’s Local Museums, The Hermitage. It sits on a bookshelf, but it’s worth it to take up the space.

Elliot made me this, and yeah, I know, it’s awesome.

This heart shaped pot was an impulse buy, so I don’t know if I’d make it again, but I do like it. I like the idea of  stirring my kids  food in it.

These sand castles sit on a shelf in my bathroom. I don’t believe I have ever added pictures from my bathroom. It’s not a very cluttered room. The one on the right is a party favor from Zoe’s first birthday.

Isn’t she cute? Someone breaks her about every 3 months. She is awaiting her latest glueing.

I like the sound of this fountain in my room. People love to open and close this fan, over and over absent-mindedly.  I think I am the only one who notices. It’s kind of funny.

My jewelry box

That photo of a palm tree is special too. I took it on my honeymoon on the beach we went to everyday. If you ask Scott, he’ll tell you he took it. I have a vivid memory of taking this, even so, he’s probably right, but don’t tell him I said so.

I will always need a phone attached to a cord, attached to a wall. I lose things and let them run out of juice. If I didn’t have this, I’d never answer my phone. I still mostly don’t. I try.

At the beginning of this project this chair was buried under a pile of boxes in my garage. There was no room for it in the house.

The top two shelves in my china closet hold all kinds of treasures from my family’s milestones and vacations. It’s fun to look at. Some of the stuff up there was in boxes when this year started.

Scott just brought this home one afternoon and said, ” I just saw this and thought you’d like it”  I know, right? Hand’s off ladies! He’s mine.

This hangs on my front door eleven months a year. Yup, I have a hot pink front door.

Scott thinks this deserves to be added because it has served us several times a day for the last 12 years. That is pretty awesome. I bought it for $6.00 at a Roses going out of business sale.

It has been suggested to me that I am nuts for holding on to three giant yoga balls in this tiny house, but my kids love to bounce on them and I love my kids.

I’ll stop there. I could go on all night. It’s kind of fun to talk about the stuff that made it through.

I do have to mention one though that didn’t.

I don’t really understand the bottle stopper as a product, since, you know, corks ARE bottle stoppers. I have never used this. Maybe someone else will.

O.K. That leaves…lets see… how many days? Oh yeah, ONE!

See you tomorrow.

 

Day 363 – My Clean Laundry Room

20 Feb

At the request of one of the readers, I decided to show you  some of my “after” rooms. My laundry room has come such a long way from…well, when I couldn’t walk across it a year ago. Still, I thought maybe I would come across a few things I could part with. I wanted to do one last clean-up before this project came to its official end. It’s not really ending, by the way.  Anyway, before I go on and on anymore – FOUR BAGS!

I got rid of four giant black trash bags of stuff. A whole bag of garbage and three of donations. What the? I thought that room was done. Here is a highlight of some of it.

Hello, world's-dumbest-toy

Salt Cellars? What is this, Downton Abbey?

Once again (and every 6 months) I decree "No More Home Haircuts" We'll see if it sticks

 

Hello Kitty Hair Extensions (O.K. I kept this one. I am a sucker for my kids)

And finally, the “finished” room.

Ta da!

Now that it’s clean, I’m feeling inspired to maybe paint it and put in a new floor. Who knew?

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