Archive | July 2015

The Quest to Tidy (Week Eleven): My Favorite Sorting Project Yet

This week I tackled a small project to get back into the swing of things.

It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I *love* snail mail. I have 3 pen pals. When I’m really lucky I get the surprise note in the mail from other friends. (And yes, I absolutely reread letters I have received!)

I’m also a postcrosser, which means I send and receive post cards to and from all over the world. Postcrossing is always a surprise. I never know who is going to write, what they are going to say, or what sort of card they will choose to send. (I share some of my favorites from time to time on the blog.)

What this boils down to is I have a lot of stationery and I love collecting more when I can! It was time to tidy up the messy pile strewn about in three places through the house.


Note Cards and DogMy sweet pup, Maggie, decided she was going to be extremely helpful in this task. Here she is posing with a few of my note cards. I tend to prefer letter-style stationery, so I only have a few note cards, though I found at least a couple more sets after taking this picture. Continue reading


The Quest to Tidy (Weeks Five – Ten): When Time Takes Over

So, not only did I fall behind in posting, I fell behind in tidying. Way, way behind. But I’m determined not to let that get to me just yet. (This post catches this project up to real-time, by the way.)
garage saleFirst off… a very successful garage sale was held. The picture above is from Not-My-House, was taken on Day 2, and still doesn’t show everything that was for sale even then. There are multiple bins of clothing behind me and plenty more tables full of odds and ends in the garage.

Everyone involved made money, got rid of many things taking up too much room in our homes, and at the end of the day… everything left was donated to a local thrift charity who came and picked it all up.

The following weekend was the 4th of July. We celebrated with fireworks and grilled food at our house on the 2nd, the hubby and I watched the city’s display from atop a hill a mile away on the 3rd, and I camped on our own front porch on the 4th. Our next door neighbors own a fireworks stand and the neighborhood lights up beautifully every year.

And then… Continue reading

The Allowance for Hobbies and Dreams

Last week I was in a continuing education class for my day job in insurance. The class held perhaps 25 individuals from the area. Before the class began, the instructor asked that we introduce ourselves, state how long we’d been in the industry, the company we currently worked for, and what our hobbies were.

More than one person had no hobby. They either worked too much or lost themselves in the wants and needs of their family enough that they didn’t know what they liked as an individual.

One woman even said, “Hobby? I’ve forgotten what that is.” Continue reading

The Quest to Tidy (Week Four): The Importance of Things

Week 4 of this project fell on the weekend of my 5th wedding anniversary. I decided not to tackle anything resembling cleaning or organizing.

Instead, I’d like to talk about perhaps the biggest point of this project.

tidyingWhen I read “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: the Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” by Marie Kondo, I was hoping to find a few tips and tricks I could apply to having a more organized household. Anything to give me a shove and a bit of motivation.

But aside from a well-thought-out plan for creating organization in one’s home, this book taught me to truly evaluate whether or not an item gives me joy. That is one of Marie’s key points. If it doesn’t make you happy… why do you have it?

This has helped me evaluate the things in my closet and in my kitchen. It has helped me clean out makeup I don’t like and personal toiletries I didn’t ever use. I expect this change in thinking will help me as I continue to tackle the remainder of my house.

But I feel like something else needs saying.

Sometimes the things you love have absolutely no practical use… and that’s okay.

This whole project is about finding happiness within your home, and learning how to align the physical aspects of its contents with an atmosphere that creates joy in your heart.

So for fun, I took a few pictures of things in my house that I love that have positively no ‘use’ to them, but I treasure them and keep them anyway. Continue reading

The Quest to Tidy (Week Three): Hitting a Low

(Oops! This was meant to go up two days ago! Silly me for not scheduling….)

Well, I knew that was inevitable.

This week I hit that horrible, ugly stage known as “Overwhelmed”.

I glimpsed at it the first week when I went through the entirety of my clothes in a single day. There was simply so much to sort. And handling each item carefully, individually, made that feeling both better and worse.

Last week was the kitchen (or most of it) and I did too much at one time. I wore myself out and typical to being me, I kept pushing past that worn feeling when I should have stopped at first warning sign.

This weekend all I can think about is how much I need to rest and how much there is in the house I haven’t even glimpsed at. How long is this insane project going to take me? I had no illusions I’d have it done in just a couple of weeks, but I’m hitting the dark place where it seems like too much to accomplish.

tidyingOne of the things that stuck with me in reading “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: the Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” was the sense of not giving up. You may not be able to tackle the project with consistent intensity, but you can not give up. I just imagine Marie standing in my house telling me “Ganbatte!” You can do it. Continue reading