Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 14

Finally, I have made time to tackle day 14 of Kathi Lipp's Kickstart to Clutter Free challenge! Today's challenge...the Dining Room...

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Dining Room

This is what my dining room looked like this morning. Yes, there is a bunch of stuff on the table and on that end chair. The dining room table is an easy place for me to dump stuff as we come into the house. Flat surfaces and I are constantly having a battle in our home. I know what I 'need' to do, but there are times when I am just too lazy to tackle it.

So this morning, I grabbed my Kickstart to Clutter Free checklist and started working on clearing off the table.

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 14

First thing I did was correct and look through my daughter's school work. As a homeschool mom, this is a constant task for me. But rather than put her books at her place on the table, I actually walked them back to her room. Less clutter on the table!

Then I started working my way through old mail and other things that found they way to trying to be permanent fixtures on the table.

I changed out the table cloth and stopped for some flowers on our way home from Bible study.

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 14

Amazing how just 15 minutes of clearing out the clutter can change the look of a room!

Now I know it has taken me a whole lot longer than 14 days to complete this challenge, but I am glad I was able to make it work around my life. I am looking forward to doing some deeper de-cluttering around our home over the next few weeks and months.

If you are looking to start de-cluttering your home, I really recommend Kathi's Kickstart to Clutter Free challenge. Just think, in 14 days you can clear out over 500 items in your home! 

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 10

Yes! Made it to double digits of this Kickstart to Clutter Free challenge! Only four more days to go! Today's task was the laundry room:

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

Our laundry room is right off the entry area of our home and my main path into our home from the garage.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

I love having a laundry room in the house rather than in the garage like we did in our first home. Since this is not an overly large room, I have tried to make good use of the space.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

But like most rooms in our home, there is definitely some clutter that needs to go away.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

Take this basket of clothes pin for instance. Now there have been times when I have needed to hang laundry to dry, but do I really need a whole basket full of clothes pins? No. I bagged up half of what was in this basket and they are going with me on my next trip to the thrift store to donate.

Once I put away the shirt that was on the back of the door, got the extra laundry soap and stuff off the floor, and cleared off that shelf, the laundry room now looks like this:

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

And that shelf above the washer and dryer now looks like this:

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

Now you might be wondering about those papers attached to the front of the cupboard. When my son was in high school, we focused on some life skills and one of those life skills was laundry. He typed up a paper on how to wash different items, like whites, darks, towels, etc.  The paper comes in handy when for some reason my husband needs to do a load of laundry.

And those drawings, they make me smile. So they are definitely staying where they are.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Laundry room

If you are wanting to tackle the clutter in your home, I know you will just love Kathi's eCourse, Kickstart to Clutter Free.  

Next task is the medicine cabinet...

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 8

We have made it to the area I have been dreading on this challenge...Day 8 is Kid's Stuff/Sports Equipment/Hobby or Art Supplies.

Kid's Stuff is not a problem because my kids are older and are responsible for their own stuff.

Sports Equipment is not a problem because my kids never really participated in sports.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 8

Which brings us to Hobby or Art Supplies...I think part of the reason I have so much of this type of stuff in my home comes with where we live. When we first moved to this area, the closest big box store was about 30 minutes away. This was before Amazon and internet shopping. So as a homeschool mom, and someone who likes to work on craft projects and do a lot of sewing, I would stock up on items in case we needed them. Who wants to pull out everything for a project just to find out that you need something and the closest store that carries that type of item is over half an hour away?

The other reason I have been dreading this day of the challenge, I tend to consider this room in our home as a dumping area. If something doesn't have a 'place', it gets dumped here. If people are coming over, I can dump clutter from other areas of my home into this room and close the door. And pure laziness of just not finding proper homes for these items with the 'I will find a home for it later' and that later never comes around.

So, here is what I started with...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 8

...yeah, it is kind of a mess. But, with Kathi's help, I knew I could make progress!!

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 8

I found a whole bunch of stuff that just needed to be thrown away, and started a pile of stuff to give away. Little by little, things were starting to look better...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 8

Definitely not finished, but so much better!

All of this stuff didn't find its way into my house overnight. And the stuff that doesn't need to stay is not going to leave overnight either.

Kathi's method is working for me. And by dedicating time to work through this challenge, I am learning to keep things in my home that I love and use.

Next up...the family room!

Kickstart to Clutter Free - Day 7

Today marks the halfway mark for me on the Kickstart to Clutter Free challenge!!

For today's area, I had to take a deep breath and just tackle one small area of this larger space...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

...the garage. There is stuff out here that is mine, there is stuff out here that belongs to my husband, and there is stuff out here that belongs to my son. I don't believe my daughter has anything out here at all.

Since this is a shared space, I am only taking  responsiblity for tackling my own boxes of clutter. So rather than tackle the whole garage, I decided to focus on the three boxes of completed schoolwork.

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

Wait a minute...three boxes of completed schoolwork for two children? 

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

Yep, three boxes...filled! And do you see the date? 2003! Oh boy. This took me a little longer than 15 minutes to go through, but I did find little treasures like this...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

And I threw away a whole bunch of paperwork I really didn't need to keep...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

When I finished going through all three boxes, there really wasn't much for me to keep. Definitely not three boxes worth!

One thing I am starting to accumulate going through the challenge is a bunch of empty boxes!

So now I have empty spaces where those three boxes lived on the shelves in the garage. Almost makes me want to go out there and do more decluttering...but I think I will wait until the weather is warmer...

Kickstart to Clutter Free Day 7

In the meantime, be sure to check out Kathi's Kickstart to Clutter Free eCourse to start clearing out clutter in your home!

First Steps to a Clutter Free Life

When people come over to our home, at first glance, most things are in their place and you normally don't see a lot of clutter around.

Our mostly clutter free front room

However, once you turn the corner and see my desk...

My cluttered desk

...or the pile of magazines...

Magazine pile

...or if you happen to be one of the very few people who get to see the dresser in our bedroom...

The cluttered top of my dresser

I am almost embarrassed to post these photos...especially this last one! Yikes! Look at all that dust! Unfortunately, these are not the only areas of clutter in my home...

But I met someone this past weekend who I believe is going to help me make those first steps to a Clutter Free Life.

Who did I meet? I can hear you asking...

Clutter Free by Kathi Lipp

I met Kathi Lipp!

Kathi was one of  the speakers at our local homeschool conference over the weekend. I had a chance to talk with her a bit on Thursday evening after I introduced myself to her as a Compassion Advocate in the area. Kathi is a speaker and writer who has recently partnered with Compassion to help more children find sponsors at her events.

She graciously gifted me with her new book 'Clutter Free' which I have practically devoured over the past couple of days. I still have about 50 pages to read, but I love her approach to identifying why we have clutter, and her three questions to help us identify what has earned a right to be in our homes.

In fact, just this morning, I had a pile of stuff to go through from VBS (yes, I know VBS was weeks ago, but I just kept procrastinating going through the stuff!) In about 15 minutes, I was able to go through two boxes and it feels so good to have it done! I am looking forward to finishing her book and taking more steps to live a more clutter free life!

Simplify your space...take back your life.
— Kathi Lipp

If you are struggling with clutter in your home, I encourage you to pick up a copy of Kathi's book.