Friday, November 04, 2011

Prioritizing and Decluttering

Spiced Vanilla Candle, from The Body Shop


  • Time to turn over and rotate our mattresses! It's a good idea to do this twice a year - usually corresponding with the time change. It helps keep the mattress wear even. While I'm turning and flipping the mattress, I will vacuum both sides of it, then move the bed and vacuum under it too. This task takes less than ten minutes. And while I have the bed all pulled apart, it's time to wash the mattress cover (we all should have one) and the dust ruffle (if any).

  • Need to run a load of laundry so it doesn't all pile up for you this weekend?

  • Have time to write a couple quick letters or greeting cards?

  • Remember that Daylight Savings Time changes this weekend.

TODAY'S PROJECT: Decluttering and Prioritizing

Santa Cookie Jar, at Pier 1 Imports

Today I'm cleaning off all sorts of surfaces in my house. Dressers, counters, coffee tables, mail tables, TV stands, bookcases, wall shelves, end tables, nightstands, and the tops of bookcases and curio cabinets.

I'll also take a minute to wipe down kitchen and bathroom counters, which seem to need this service on an almost daily basis.

I am doing this project today to de-clutter before I haul out Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations and clutter everything up again. I don't like having a lot of "knick-knacky" stuff around. Just a few beautiful or useful things in each room. "A place for everything, and everything in its place."

However, I also don't want to have an austere, sterile home either, where people are afraid to sit down or touch anything. That's why each room has a few (just a few) decorative objects: vases, colorful candleholders, scarves, or decorative pillows.

The less you have out, the less items you have to dust or dust around. I tend to rotate out some of my favorite decorative objects seasonally. When not in use, they're carefully stored in the garage in a Sterilite storage bin. That way I have time to enjoy looking at all my possessions, rather than having so many items cluttering up an end table that I can't really see or appreciate each one. Then, every time I sort, I reevaluate if an object is worth keeping til next year.

Any items I haven't set out to display for a year or two should be given away, sold, recycled or thrown out.

I really love the looks of the Santa cookie jar shown above. However, trying to stay healthy, we don't eat a lot of cookies in my house. That would be just one more object cluttering up my kitchen. So adorable though he is, I'm going to control myself and not buy that cookie jar.

A mosaic frame I picked up recently for my autumn living room decor

Today I'm making time to declutter, sort, put things away, dust thoroughly, and edit which items I have sitting on top of bookcases and surfaces. I'd like to just have a scarf (or other fabric decoration) on top of a bookcase. On end tables, I like to have just one coaster for a beverage, a colorful placemat, a vase of fresh flowers if possible, a candle and a framed family photo or two.

This project will make my house cleaner (less dusty), more organized, less cluttery, and more relaxing.

LOVELY BLOGS: Dooley Noted

Here's a great DIY and crafty blog from an enthusiastic lady who seems to have a ton of energy. Currently you can peek at her fall centerpiece; learn how to make a DIY burlap headboard; and read about her thoughtful Jar O' Gratitude. Lots of great ideas here.


Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes (Nigella Lawson)

Chocolate Lime Cheesecake (Nigella Lawson)

Easy Owl Cupcakes (Phaedra's Adventures)

Fall Centerpieces (Martha Stewart)

Fall Centerpiece for a Kitchen Island (Birds Nest Cottage)

Fall Essential: 55 Boots to Buy Now (Vogue)

Owl Cupcakes (Mommy Babble)

Special Brunches (Rachael Ray)

Winter Organizing Tips (Martha Stewart)

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