February is here, and it’s time for a new habit. This month, we are going to practice hard at decluttering for 15 minutes a day. With less clutter, it’s much easier to keep our homes clean and organized — and that means we have more time for fun! Here are tons of great essays, tips, and ideas to get you started.
You Can Do Anything for 15 Minutes!” ~ FlyLady
Here are the habits we have covered so far in 2013. Remember to reinforce these habits while completing your new one:
Don’t forget to keep up with the habits you created in 2012. View our 2012 habit archive.
Testimonial: Seeing Progress Through Decluttering
I am a work-at-home mother of 2 children — a toddler and a tween!
That is like navigating two entirely different worlds. They share a room and the age-span of toys is incredible. Our entire family has been working together to rearrange some of rooms to keep up with everybody’s growing and changing needs.
Last year, I went through clothes, toys, books, records (yes, LPs!), CDs, and video tapes and came up with 6 bags of clothes and 3 boxes of the rest.
Salvation Army picked them up (we’re NYers – nobody in the family has a driver’s license!) on my 10th wedding anniversary. In my “past life”, I may have been a martyr about the date but I decided that blessing somebody else with what we no longer needed would be my anniversary present to myself.
I have a home office that had 2 bookcases full of “stuff”. My children had 2 shelves but it was full of randomly-shoved-there things that they forgot about. My goal was to clean out one full bookcase and make space in the corner for a desk for my 9 year old son. He needs a quiet space away from distraction to do his homework.
One bookcase now lives in our long hallway and is the first thing you see when you walk in. I have gathered all our cookbooks and craft books, and the children have the two bottom shelves for their books. This bookcase is all about our family’s interests.
It is not jam-packed with books so I have room to put out things we love, such as a marble mortar & pestle to act as a bookend for the cookbooks and a sewing basket for the craft books. I have plans to fill all the very nice picture frames that I had stashed in the closet because I had nowhere to display them.
Now my son has his own desk in a corner of my office. It is only a cardtable and folding chair right now but he has a lamp, his books, an inbox to keep his papers organized, and a tiny nightstand that he has outgrown sits under the table as a “file cabinet”. He LOVES his space now and he takes about an hour less to do his homework!
My toddler likes to sit at the desk during the day and do crafts while I work.
On top of the massive Salvation Army donation, we spent the weekend cleaning out the children’s toys. They have seen how much Mommy had purged and they also had received some lovely handed down toys that they enjoy immensely. They were ready to purge.
We threw out 6 small garbage bags of toys that were not usable anymore. We put together one large bag to give to our church. We wanted to give the children more space in their room so we took a small bookcase from their room and put in in the dining room to corral the area we use as an arts & crafts center.
None of this moving around and rearranging and giving new life to old spaces would have been possible if not for all the 15 minutes and loving motivations from FlyLady. My dh is very born-organized so the idea of purging and rearranging was to him – “like duh!” – but my son and I are both SHEs. We had to see a little clean first LOL!
THANK YOU for showing me how to take the first babystep and keep going.
FlyBaby in a small NYC apartment