|The Ponderosa :: January 2015|
Organizing my home and putting things in order at the beginning of the calendar year is a big ritual for me. I shared a little bit about my tendencies back in 2012. Around this time, I picked up a book called Apartment Therapy: The Eight Step Home Cure by Maxwell Ryan (the founder and creator of Apartment Therapy). The book had these great principles for organizing small spaces and it helped me with a little spring cleaning that year. I signed up for their daily emails about designing for small spaces and that's where I learned about their January Cure. You can read more about it here.
I've participated for the past couple of years and you can see my posts about it here and here.
This year, I sent out a bulk email to some of my like-minded friends to see if they wanted to participate and about a dozen said yes! Accountability really helps to motivate me and I hoped it would also motivate my friends participating in the January Cure.
|My kitchen (after) + My January Cure Project List(s)|
Setting up an Outbox is another key component to the January Cure and mine would live in the laundry room, where I would see it when I walked by and could easily add items to be donated, moved to another part of the house and/or sit here in the outbox purgatory until I decided what I wanted to do with it. This outbox concept is key to the success of the January Cure. It allows you to keep your focus on the daily assignments and not get stuck in the more of the details of where to put the items deposited there. Here's Apartment Therapy's Outbox rules:
|My laundry room Outbox during week one of the January Cure|
1. Anything can go in the Outbox
2. The Outbox is allowed to get messy
3. Everything must stay in the Outbox for at least one week
4. After that time you have several choices
a. Take anything back out
b. Leave anything you are undecided about for one more week
c. Dispose of the rest by moving to the garbage, recycling bin, or giveaway pile
Once you get used to separating first and disposing of later, you'll find that clearing clutter gets easier and easier.
This is hard for me because I don't want to leave a big mess out where I can see it, but it does help break the emotional hold some items have over me. My Outbox is growing and I finally addressed some items that I knew exactly what to do with. The other items that are in flux are still in the Outbox.
My goal project for this year's January Cure is our bedroom. Our bedroom is tiny and in no way feels like a "master" anything. There isn't even room for a proper dresser. My husband's wardrobe occupies most of the closet in our room and my clothing and shoes live in a small closet he converted for me a few years ago, just outside our bedroom door. Living in a 1950's farmhouse has its perks, but it also has many, many challenges. Making the most of our space in the bedroom has been a conversation topic since we purchased the house eight years ago.
|Queen sized bed made of hardwood (Ash, we think) sold on Craig's List in a flash!|
|Works In Progress :: New storage bed with headboard + closet purge|
|Spice cabinet purge was long OVERDUE|
The rest of the assignments have been pretty easy and I decluttered a few drawers on Thursday and marked those pesky jobs off of my pending List of Projects. Again, any place in my home where I can hide the mess - I will. The only bright side to this is that my home is small, less than 1,000 square feet, and when I set my mind to cleaning and decluttering it really doesn't take that long.
I've set in motion a few jobs that I needed to outsource, like calling an electrician to install wall-mounted reading lights above our bed. We also used that U-haul rental truck to load up yard detritus, a non-working satellite dish and our old set of boxsprings and Steve transported it to the local dump. See? I've even got him in on the January Cure.
That's it for now. It's almost five a.m. and I'm about to tackle the drawers that house my magazines and old newspapers.
I can't be stopped.