Spring Cleaning

Spring is here and I know it because that urge to tidy and clean up is strong right now. It may be more pronounced since an acquaintance recently put her home up for sale. Of course, being a slightly nosy person I went to the real estate website to check out how her home looked.

It looks fantastic!

It of course got me on a kick of checking out other homes that are for sale in the area. One of the things I noticed is that a lot of the homes seemed staged. I could be wrong maybe they live with perfect light, fresh flowers, and perfectly accented furniture all the time. If they do that’s fantastic and frankly how I want to live. There are loads of tips on how to but the most consistent tip was: make it look like you have lots of space by packing up as many of your belongings as possible.

The aim is to pack up your excess things so it looks like you have more space. Like this:

Image result for before and after staging photos closet

 

Since embracing the life-changing magic of tidying up and minimalism I’ve found my outlook on my space has changed. While I do wish we had more built in storage, this desire to have my home feel like a fantastic oasis has resulted in me attempting to make the staging goal of having 30% of cupboard space clear my reality.

This resulted in two boxes of household goods and clothing being delivered to a charity shop, a large garbage bag of items dumped, and a few things being gifted to friends and family members who were interested in them.

It’s amazing how much a good a decent scrub and tidy can do for our home. My hosting schedule has taken a hit as I don’t have the energy to have people over. Since the house is feeling more welcoming I’m wanting to invite people over even if it’s just for some snacks and conversation.

Has the spring cleaning bug gotten you yet for the year?

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Fast 15

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A few years ago my home was too cluttered for my liking. I had branded myself a messy soul since even as a child I couldn’t seem to keep a surface clear. I was in a state of constant mess and hated it. Once I had my home organized it became clear that the root cause of the mess was plain old laziness. After yet another Saturday afternoon spent organizing, clearing and sorting I instituted Fast Fifteen. Here’s how it works: I set a timer for 15 minutes and clean whatever I can in that time period.

That’s it. It turns out the secret to being prepared for unexpected guests was 15 minutes. Clearly deep cleaning is not happening on weekdays but in that 15 minutes I’m able to do dishes, wipe messes or pack away laundry.

Recently I came across this interview with Neen James where she speaks of how manageable our lives can be when we break them into 15 minute increments.

Would this advice work for you?

Photo courtesy of Carlos Porto via freedigitalphotos.net

Stuff Part 2

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So writing about stuff got me thinking that I need to take a look at what I’ve got.

I haven’t read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up though I’ve had a few friends swear by it. It’s on my list as I’ve seen the way in which people who’ve embraced the concepts seem to be able to let go of items they don’t need.

In lieu of that knowledge, I began inspecting some of my heavy stuff areas. As I’ve mentioned I like to host, which means I’ve got loads of hosting things as well as kitchen gadgets. You name it I want it. Do I need it? Nope! Will I use it? Maybe, if I have it…

So I went through one of my larger collection cupboards and it was like Christmas. I emptied everything out in pieces and then packed it all most things back in themes i.e. glassware, plastic serving dishes, glass serving dishes, appliances, random gadgets. I found things that I forgot I had and would definitely use, you know, if I remember but I also found things I won’t ever use. They were either items that were such a good price I couldn’t resist or gifts.

As I’m not as dedicated as my friends who read the book I’m chickening out of actually parting with those items. Remember those pack rat tendencies that say, “If you get rid of it you may need it and then you’ll waste money buying it!”

Instead I’ve got them separated from the pack and I’m giving myself some time to say goodbye. Some items will be given to charity shops but some items have never been opened! These are going into my gift giving cupboard as most of them can be used to supplement gifts at Christmas.

What do you do with things you don’t need?

Image courtesy of Sira Anamwong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net