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.



Tackle It on Tuesday: Photo Wall

This past week, I have still been working on my craft room, collecting up items for our upcoming yard sale, and moving things around in the craft room to make more room to actually get craft projects finished. Phew! Maybe after the yard sale is over, I can share another photo of what the room looks like, but right now, there are still many boxes filled with items for the yard sale.

One project I did finish last week was updating my photo wall. Here is the before picture:

before photo of photo wall

I have been wanting to rearrange the photos on this wall for some time now, but finding those prints last week was just the thing I needed to drive me to work on this project.

templates for photos

First thing I did was to mat and frame the new prints. Then I took down the photos I wanted to rearrange. After that, I cut out paper the size of each photo that would be going back up on the wall and jotted a quick note on the paper so I knew which photo would be going where.

photo templates up on the wall

Then with my daughter's help, we arranged the papers up on the wall to get an idea of what the wall would look like with the photos in those spots. Once we had an arrangement we both liked, it was time to put the photos back up on the wall.

finished photo wall

Ta da! Now I can enjoy all these memories as I walk by this wall every day!

So what project will I be tackling this week?

new knitting project

My husband and I were up in the foothills this week, and they just happen to have a wonderful yarn shop there. I couldn't resist purchasing some yarn for a new project.

little bit of knitting progress

The yarn is nice and chunky, so I have made a bit of progress, even with knitting only a few rows. We will see how far I get by next week!

What project will you be working on this week?

Tackle It on Tuesday: My Desk

Last week, I shared with you my idea of doing a weekly link up where we share something we would like to tackle over the upcoming week. My project this past week was my desk.

My messy desk

My messy desk

With being out of town for three days over the last week, I wasn't sure if I was going to have a chance to tackle this one project. But Mondays are usually one day out of the week that we are home. So, even though there are still some piles on my desk, I believe it looks a whole lot better than it did the week before!

My desk with less clutter!

My desk with less clutter!

So what am I planning on tackling this upcoming week?

Mr. Tumnus costume!

Mr. Tumnus costume!

Back in September, my daughter enrolled in a drama class with a local homeschool group. In just two and a half weeks, they will be performing 'The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe'. Kelsey is playing the part of Mr. Tumnus! (She is really excited about this part!) Well, Mr. Tumnus needs some furry legs. So I will be attempting to take these two yards of furry material and turning them into furry leg pants for Kelsey to wear as part of her costume. Sounds like fun, doesn't it?!? Wish me luck!!

Do you have a project you would like to tackle in the next week? I would love for you to join me! Let's help keep each other accountable as we tackle projects around our home, so here are the rules:

  1. Below is the link up. Please share the URL for your specific blog post. (Makes it easier for us all to find it.)
  2. Once your post is up, visit the other bloggers. Comment on their post and give them some encouragement to make progress on their project for the week.
  3. Come back next week so we can share our progress. And hey, some projects might take longer than a week! So don't be discouraged if your project is not finished yet. Let's celebrate the step-by-step progress we are making!

Making Cut-Offs Cute!

Making cut-offs cute

I don’t know about you, but my daughter likes to wear her ‘shorts’ pretty long. Have you tried finding long shorts while shopping? It is next to impossible!! So we have come up with a solution, and it is a frugal one too.

Making cut-offs cute

Here is what you are going to need:

  • a pair of cut-off jeans (cut these to the length you would like)
  • extra wide double fold bias tape
  • thread
  • pins
  • Making cut-offs cute
  • sewing machine

The first thing you are going to do is measure around the bottom of the pant leg and cut a piece of the bias tape about an inch or so longer. Using your pins, you are going to basically ‘wrap’ the bias tape around the bottom of the cut-off leg. I use the pins to help the bias tape stay in place as I am sewing around the pant leg.

Making cut-offs cute

Then at the sewing machine, sew through all layers of the bias tape and the pant leg.

Making cut-offs cute

Once you have sewn around the pant leg, I fold under the end of the bias tape to finish off the edge.

Making cut-offs cute

Long ‘shorts’ makes for one really happy teenage girl in my home!

You can really get creative with this project if you want to, but my daughter wanted just plain blue bias tape to finish off these ‘shorts’. Try different colors of bias tape, or get really creative and make your own bias tape out of fabric you have at home.

What project have you done at home lately? I would love for you to share in the comments!