Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (Full Version)

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jem -> Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 11:21:06 AM)

I won't bore you with a lot of explanation, but I can't stand it anymore!!!!!!!!!!! My poor little cottage has been negelected so bad as far as interior cleaning goes. It is really, kinda, sorta clean, no one will die if they eat in my kitchen. It is just the clutter. I usually keep some loose order but that has gone the way of good intentions, I'm blaming the heat. Does any one have a method or schedule or suggestion to help me go thru and make life easier. I don't think I'm a horder but I'm not an organizer. And sentimental feelings can realy go deep on silly things (ok I admitted it!!). It is cooler now and I have given mysef until Sept. to make a huge dent in the cottage. I have 4 rooms: living room, eat in kitchen, bed room, and sewingroom/den of course bath and laundry. LR - usually for visitors and at times card table goes up for overflow sewing i.e. me trying to do the fold thing with fabric to reduce amont of fabric, also box for give away. K - needs good cleaning in cabinets and out - cookbook collection need to be pared down in a big way, some sets of bowls, glasses ect. need to find new homes, I will never use them. BedR - need to sort clothes no longer used and re-evaluation of clothing storage, one small chest and an armorie I never liked it was an assembly kit I used in sewing room in TN, also small closet. Then the place I spend most of my time the sewing room. I may be trying to use it for too many things.

Now if any of you good and darling people have any advice for me you will not hurt my feeling. I have too much furniture but not the right pieces. I am determined that by the time I'm closed in for the winter, this house is going to be lean and clean. I have furniture I am now ready to wave good-bye. HELP!!! I'm drowning!!

I do know Thow Away, Give Away and Put Away. That is where I am starting.

caaguirre -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 2:09:41 PM)

I think the hardest part is taking that first step. One trick I've heard that makes a lot of sense to me is to start someplace in one room, it doesn't matter where you start, just pick one spot. Then when that spot is satisfactory, move to the area next to it and do the same thing. The lady who suggested this worked her way around a room in this way until the room was cleared. Then she went on to the next room on her list. She didn't make a deadline for herself, it took as long as it took. Some days she could only work on it for 15 min but she kept at it until she was finished. She said her life has been so much easier since she cleared out, no more searching for everything all the time. I heard her on Focus on the Family many years ago but her advice always stuck with me. I think she may have written a book, too. The word "messy" was in her presentation somewhere. Also, I think once you start paring down it gets easier as you go.

ShirleyCalgary -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 2:46:39 PM)

Hey let's start in the kitchen - I will join you. I started to throw things away from my kitchen cupboards - stuff that is out of date. I threw all the cookies to the birds all the crackers too those gluttens ate it all in one morning it is a wonder that they could fly.
Kitchen needs tons more work. I replaced all the plastic with glass storage like Pyrex and another brand maybe Anchor. I no longer make big roasts so I got rid of the large jam jars that I used to use to mix my flour and water before making gravy. I need to declutter as well every room.

LisaSewCute -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 3:32:36 PM)

I haven't tried this, but many friends swear by:


She has many organizational tips and they are presented in a fun way. She also gives you little steps to do each day. Good luck- let us know what works for you.

I have been surprised how much things sell for on ebay. I recently sold 8 old heirloom patterns that I would have just thrown away and got $30! You might do well with some patterns/books/small things that you want to part with.

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 7:02:16 PM)

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Your encouragement is much appreciated. I posted about lunch time and have made great progress until I had a call about Casey ( check prayer forum ). I have spent the day in the living room, no TV, no computer, Bach on CD very loud!!! Front door, and windows open, it only got up to 85F today. Coooooool!!!

All the furniture was pulled to the center of the room, vacuumed behind it all. (could knit a cat or two) 2 bins - give away and put away & trash can - throw away. 3 trash bags later, 2 bins put away, stuff to give away on back porch. Maybe yard sell later? All surfaces but desk purged, nothing on floor but what is suppose to be there. All drawers and shelves purged. Need to wash curtains and clean windows, purge desk, file if I need to. Polish furniture. I've vacuumed several times, never have a Navy blue wool rug and grey cats (I'm looking for Navy blue cats). All this is for this evening and tomorrow.

Shirley, I'll join you in the kitchen late tomorrow or Wednesday. Tomorrow I think I'll listen to Josh Gobin instead of Bach, or the guy who wrote the 1812 Overture, I won't attempt to spell Tchkosky. (Looking at it I know it is wrong.) Shirley you have such a large house, I only have a bit over 800 sq ft. I bet you still finish before I do. You are a dynamo!!!

Lisa, thanks for the website. I'll check it out. Carol, I started at the kitchen door and worked my way clockwise around the living room so I'll be able to start on the kitchen next. Do you remember the Mary Tyler Moore show? Sue Ann (Betty White) told Mary to start at the door and clean around the room in a clockwise direction. Yes, I am a little tired but it is a good tired.

Since, I'm quoting from sit coms in order to clean house any other suggestions are appreciated by anyone. Again, thank you all.

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 7:11:56 PM)

p.s. Cats in total confusion. Outside cats watching thru screen door. Cat toys picked up from the floor and put into their toy basket. I wonder how many toys I will have to pick up out of the living room tomorrow. I'll let you know.

caaguirre -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/15/2011 9:49:10 PM)

Congratulations on your hard work! I do remember Sue Ann on the MTM show, she was such a brat but had some good ideas too. We never missed watching MTM every week.

I went to the Focus on the Family site and they're still broadcasting Sandra Felton and Amazon sells some of her "Messies Anonymous" books in case anyone is interested. She talks about how to get your house in order and maintain order after that. Good tips and a good sense of humor.

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/16/2011 10:00:45 AM)

Thanks for the info about the "Messies Anonymous" I will certainly check it out in future. Right now something is propelling me I haven't had in a long time. It is more like when I really kept house for the family. I worked until 2am and have been up since 8 am. My living room curtains are in the laundry, the ceilng fan had a good cleaning and even new light bubs. I couldn's see climbing a 10 ft. ladder and having to get it our again in a few months. I also put a beef stew in my crockpot.

I have to admit I'm sore, and all the dust I've stirred up is not helping the the asthma. But a couple of buffered asprin and puff on an inhaler is working. I think I'm going to have to learn to pace myself better.

Can I ask for your prayers and encouragement as I go up and down this ladder? It is a good and solid one by I'm not at my best at heights! Thanks. Onward and upward. lol

ShirleyCalgary -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/16/2011 12:58:45 PM)

Wow I think that I need a puff of whatever is in your inhaler. You are like the white turnado whirling through all that housework even dinner in the crockpot. I need to get dressed and go to the grocery store - dogs finished the last of the chicken. They dont seem to like meat like my other dogs - sometimes they dont eat the rib steak I cook for them instead they love the bones - they didnt seem to like the turkey at Christmas - they liked the lamb at Easter especially the lamb shanks and they like ham which my Bella did not like. They do not seem to like pasta like the others did either must take that lasagna out of the freezer for dinner.

Scottish Anna -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/17/2011 5:07:02 AM)

Jem, you sure are whipping up a storm, good luck with it all!  I too am trying to do the same as you.  I found making a list did help, I enjoyed the ticking the done items off [:D]  The one thing that I am insisting on now, is that the sitting room is cleared before bed each night, no papers/.magazine lying around on tables but put in basket.  I have 3 baskets in sitting room, one for that days paper or any weekly/monthly magazines in date, 1 basket for previous days papers etc and also for any junk mail that comes in with the mags and through the mail that can go in the recycle box, anything with private details go straight into the shredder and one for general garbage, like crisp/biscuit wrappers or cannot be recycled.  Also, ensuring that all dishes are cleared and go immediately into the dishwasher.

Many years ago, I was so pedantic about tidyness and order (we are talking labeling of kitchen cupboard so that everone knew where to tidy away,) that if anyone dared leave so much as a teaspoon in the sink, I would go bananas [:@]  Unfortunately, I have now gone the other extreme [:o]



jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/17/2011 1:33:18 PM)

Well, Monday caught up with me last evening. I had washed windows and had started rehanging curtains in the living room. Shirs hung on both windows and the heavier set on the front window. I step off the ladder and twisted my ankle. It made me angry and I had a total meltdown!! After I dried the tears I checked the ankle to make sure it was just a twisted and nothing worse. Ice and elevation last night. Ace bandage and occasional ice today. So today I'm going trough papers. I have my shreader next to the chair and all the papers from my desk. When I finish here I'm going thru my 2 drawer filing cabinet. I still have the card table up so may fold some fabric but I am not stopping. My neighbor said if I didn't get the other set of curtains up by this weekend he would do it for me. He is the nice college kid that cuts my grass. This is the ankle with the worse artritis but I didn't do anything to my knee. Thank God!!! I'm still moving forward just with a limp. lol

Shirley, It might be Thursday or Friday before I get to the kitchen. You don't have to wait on me! What will be the second area you hit? Anna you are welcome to join us. I know exactly how it was. About 30 minutes before bed. The sitting room was picked up. I took a walk thru the house and anything out or place was put away, dishes washed or in dishwasher, shoes put away, papers in recycle. In the morning a wipe around the bath. vacuum and dust it was done. That is my goal. Anna, I'm finnally making my list.

My sis is taking granny's bookcase. It will be replaced with a curved glass curio cabinet I have in the sewing room which is taller and will hold the books I need by my desk. It will also hold an array of antique sewing notions. It is oak and will match my file cabinet. I'm looking for someone to take the 1910 rocking chair, or when I reconfigure the bedroom it may go in there.

It is frustrating to feel like I still have the energy to keep going but the ankle hurts to bad. So until it is feeling better anything I do will have to be sitting. Ratts!!!!! Keep up the good work.

mimsy -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/18/2011 12:50:54 AM)

sorry to hear about your ankle! prayers for a quick recovery, your health and safety

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/18/2011 10:33:52 AM)

Thanks mimsy!

I've checked in with flylady and with messies anonymous. Fly lady has me cleaning my kitchen sink for a month. Messies has me buying white bankers boxes and putting all the mess in the boxes and later going thru all the boxes. Right now I like my method better. You make a decision and keep going. If you don't have a place for it you have to find it home somewhere else. I did read and get some good ideas from both websites. I think I will go back and check both at times. They have some good ideas. I can's see packing everything up only to have to sort it later. Plus the expense of the boxes. You might have the illusion of a neat place but in a house this size most of the house would be full of boxes and I would have not idea where things are. "Messies" did have some good things to understand how you get in the mess and insite into that was very good. One of the things was going from a large house to a small house. Which I did then I moved to an even smaller house.

The living room is looking much better.

The kid next door said put the trash bags on the porch and he would put them in the trash cans for me. He even looked thru the give away stuff and took a lamp and some other small things. I told him he could have what ever he wanted from there. He will help me take the bookcase to sister's and move around some other big pieces when I get to that point. The office chair I use in the sewing room rolls so I'm scooting around on it until I can walk better.

How are things going Shirley? I'm just about to the kitchen. I'll start by sorting the cookbooks.

I'm making lunch and cleaning again.

ShirleyCalgary -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/18/2011 12:10:15 PM)

Jacki for people who live alone it is a very bad thing to work past the point of exhaustion not pointing any fingers just saying and that is when accidents happen. Before I sold my other house I worked all day up at 6 and home let the dog out there was just ChiChi then - make us dinner then into old clothes and clean or paint till Midnight. One night I was painting the bathroom - too pokey for a ladder so I had to stand on the edge of the bath tub or get up on the closed toilet seat then stand on the piano type vanity and sink - well after working and wanting to finish the bathroom painting I was exhausted then I almost stepped off the vanity for sure I would have broken a leg at best because there was no place to land the toilet was so close to the vanity and a very big step down like 3 feet - scared the bejeesus out of me. I learned a few tricks how to reach places while painting. The near miss was very sobering.

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/18/2011 1:50:55 PM)

Shirley, I know that is exactly what happened to me. I was too tired. I knew going up and down the now "d*mn" ladder was for when I was thinking clearly and not about to drop. I knew I only had one more set to hang and then my list could be done. I should have know they were not going anywhere and I could hang them in the morning. Like you said I just wanted to mark off the living room and now I'm paying for it. The meltdown was total anger at myself for pushing too hard and gave me an excellent excuse for a 10 minute pity party.

Yesterday I did some paper shredding. Sis and I went to lunch and I explored the websites suggested here. The websites were interesting but geared more to people with children and larger houses. Flylady would have been good for the house in TN with 4 bedrooms and 3 bath. And so far I haven't seen any info for our santuaries (sewing rooms). On Messie Anonymous you can pay $5 a week for a personal plan. Of course both sites have books and other things for you to buy. But frankly I don't think their purple spunge will clean anybetter than my yellow one from the dollar store. Hey, I don't knock it everyone need to make a living.

Today I'm folding fabric that I had moved to the living room earlier. I am amazed how quickly it goes and how much space it saves. I have bins I know I could not get another fat quarter into. After folding there is usuall at least 1/3 of the bin empty. So for about every 3 bins I fold I ger rid of one. Right now I putting fabric in color order (roy g biv) unless it is a group I want to keep together for some reason. I do keep a trash can by my chair along with a give away box. So far not much to give away some throw away. I have even kept some uglies.

Then I'll sit at the kitchen table and sort cookbooks and I think I can clean the lower half of the china cabinet and the two cabinets in the eating area.
By Monday I hope I can push the vacuum and say finished to the living room and the eating end of the kitchen.

Hope you are doing well. Give the pups a hug from Auntie Jacki. My cats are sill freaked. They are looking for things that have gone out the door and Mingo can't figure out why I am sitting down but not cuddling her. They have left toys on my pillow and toys in the chair I watch TV in the sewing room. They haven't figured out why the toys go in the basket when I find them. lol

caaguirre -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/18/2011 5:23:47 PM)

When you get to a certain age, ladders seem to be an enemy instead of a helpful friend. I let my dgs or sons go up the ladder instead of these old legs. I think we all have too much of something ... mine is fabric. I know my kids think I'm a fabric hoarder, I just like a variety! I was supposed to do fabric and sewing room clean up during my recuperation ... well that didn't work out, so it's a job for later instead.

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/19/2011 10:13:56 AM)

I will not let sis in the house until the fabric is put away. She is not a seamstress and does not see why one would buy more than one piece of fabric and one pattern at a time. After you make the project, paper pattern should go in the trash, along with any scraps. Yeah that's going to happen. This is the sister who couldn't understand why it took more than 1/2 yard of fabric to make something of Sofia. She has bought a yard of fabric for me to make a valance for a double window. She has no clue. When I ask her why she buys 6 books at a time when she can only read one at a time, and why she keeps them after she reads them. She doesn't see the connection at all. I really have to love a book if I keep it. I love to read but she is with books the way I am with fabric. lol.

Yesterday, I folded fabric, filled trash bags and put away stuff. The card table is coming down. No not all of the fabric is sorted but I want to put a period on the living room, and keep moving. So my break is over and I'm back to the clutter.

vpenner -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/19/2011 2:20:27 PM)

Oops, I'm that way with both books and sewing paraphernalia!![;)]

LisaSewCute -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/20/2011 9:51:11 AM)

Jem, it sounds like you are making wonderful progress! I keep my favorite books, too, because I love to re-read them. And of course, I never like to part from my patterns, either!!

jem -> RE: Disorganized need HELP from organized friends (8/20/2011 9:55:32 AM)

Well, the card table is still in the living room and I'm folding fabric and it is going fast. Ankle has turned lovely shades of purple yellow and blue. It still hurts a little. I'm staying off of it as much as possible. I've gotten to the bins under the bed and they're bins under the sewing table. Gathering the fat quarters. Still taking out trash and give away. Hope to take Granny's book case to sis's the evening, and move the oak piece to its place. And of course get the curtains up and the floor vaccumed.

One thing I have learned is it is hard to just clean one room at a time in this small house. Everything you move causes 3 other things ro move. But at least I'm moving forward not backward.

Vanessa I use to hoard books. But coming to the little house I've learned to let go. I have a small 3 shelf book case for books to be read and keep book. I have a 2' x 5' tall cabinet with all my sewing books. The bottom self in the oak cabinet will hold my extra Bibles and study material. The book case in the kitchen will be pared down to one shelf not 3. Oh well, I guess I'm still hoarding books after all and you wouldn't believe how many boxes I took to the library for their saie. he. he.

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