We live in the days of Marie Kondo (isn’t she fabulous?). YET, we have so much stuff! I feel like the second the first child is born the house suddenly feels stuffed. And it keeps on getting worse. It keeps on coming in, but rarely goes out. Side note: Can we just all agree that Dollar Store trinkets are not necessary for class parties?
In the past we’ve regularly but very casually cleaned out a closet or our office, but never with the intensity required to really de-clutter. And then it happened. We made the decision to purchase a new-to-us home closer to my husband Wiggy’s office and where our boys will be attending school next year.
That means two things.
- Everything left in the house will need to be moved to the new one.
- All surfaces will need to be mostly bare in order to sell our current house.
I would be lying if I told you that it was easy for me to wrap my head around this and truly commit. I told our realtor (a friend who is also a mom of 3) multiple times that I didn’t know if I could get the house ready to be listed and toured prior to moving.
But. We got to work.
I’m a bit embarrassed to share with you that our entire basement bedroom was FULL of random junk from the past 7 years of living in our home. Much of it was kid stuff and baby related, but much of it was also just random stuff. I was so surprised because to look around our house I don’t think it ever seemed cluttered at all, but NOW I realize it really was.
I mean how many large mason jars does one really need? And I use my Vitamix for everything so my food processor is no longer necessary. And ALL those pillows? Where did they even come from? Don’t even get me started on the toys. And then there are the wedding gifts. For some reason I’ve always felt guilty parting with wedding gifts that I have not used in our 14 years of marriage. I just don’t use fancy glass all that often and we have a super duper casual home so it doesn’t sit out.
The question was no longer “Will I ever use this?”. But instead became “Am I willing to pack this up and move it?”.
For much of the “stuff” the answer quickly became no.
And I am happy to announce that we DID it. Our house went on the market last week and it is truly spic and span. See that picture above? My counter has NEVER looked like that since the day we moved in!
Here’s the thing. I LOVE it. When I know that I have to keep the surfaces clean, it become so much simpler. When the surface IS clean it makes random junk sitting around that much more obvious.
De-cluttering has also helped us push our boys to take more responsibility to put their things away after using them. It makes it so much easier to point out things that are out of place and for them to then put them in the right place. I notice they aren’t so overwhelmed and that makes me smile!
We have 100% committed that our new house will never be cluttered. I’m realizing that more and more how much less stressed I feel when things are in their places. The challenge for me will be to slow down with unpacking because I despise having tasks undone and am always tempted to rush to finish the task.
I’m really hoping I can stick to it and put everything in a place where it truly belongs vs. just piling things up. We’ve also decided that we’re going to bring less junk into our house and donate or dispose of the things that we don’t really need. Kid party favors might just disappear after bedtime (I know they won’t notice) and the pickle jars will go in the recycling right after they’re emptied.
I would LOVE to hear from you. What are your solutions for keeping your space de-cluttered and neat while also raise children who make messes? I’ll also take all of the moving advice you have to offer!