Saturday, April 10, 2010

Boxes # 14 through.....


After 9 days of my decluttering challenge I have dug out 32 boxes of stuff to get rid of. (I guess I should have started with a bigger box) I would double my goal to 60, but I know I still have 2 of my worst areas to go, so I think I will just keep counting and see if I can get to 100! That sounds daunting. But really I am a third of the way there in less than a third of the month.

It is amazing once you get started how you want to keep on going. The lightness I feel after getting rid of stuff is great motivation. And I have been learning and growing through this too. I have been jotting down some of my spiritual reflections as I go along. I think I will take time during May to develop some of those thoughts more deeply.

But this past week I have heard two messages that hit home more because of my decluttering challenge. First our pastor preached a great message on idolatry on Sunday. It really made me think about what my "stuff" represented. As I sorted through a lot of my nostalgia, I thought the each item I was holding onto. Was it tangible story to pass on to the next generation? Or was it my own personal little shrine to my past? The tangible stories can stay, the shrines need to go.

Second, the devotional speaker at my mom's group spoke about making time for an intimate relationship with God. (She was really good, and just happens to be my wonderful real life mom.) As I was cleaning out my hall closet I thought about all the time I waste, moving stuff around, searching for stuff, cleaning out stuff just because I have too much stuff. God is a jealous God. I think He wants that time back, for me to spend with Him and use for Him.

So now for some before and afters:

Here we have the girl's/guest's linen closets:

I had 7 sets of sheets for my guest room!! The only people who have used it in the last year are me and the screaming baby, and my sister-in-law. I plan to use the empty space for kids games when I unearth them in the family room. I pared down my scrapbooking supplies to one long tub. That is in my closet. Hopefully the sewing stuff will move there too. Then I can use that space for the heavy blankets I'll need to put away as the weather warms up.

And the hallway coat closet:

Yes we have a lot of coats. That happens to farmers. Since I promised myself I would not declutter anything personally belonging to the farmer, we still have a lot of coats, but not quite so many. The best thing was relocating those 3 drawer organizers. Now I frequently drool over these at the store. And here I had 2 on the top shelf of my coat closet. OK, why would someone put 3 drawer organizers on a top shelf. Well, we're tall, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. So I moved one down to a useful level. And I put things on the top shelf that I could reach and move easily without standing on a chair. The other 3 drawer organizer is sitting empty waiting for me to find the perfect spot. I think my closet is calling it's name.

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