Purge Project Update

You may remember me talking about our purge project here.  I am happy to say that during the month of September, I worked my katooshie off and scoured every room in this little house.  Okay, fine…not exactly every room….. I skipped the [unfinished] basement.  😉

I started with the closets because I felt like I could knock those out quicker than starting in one of the bedrooms.  And my ‘free’ time is limited so I  worked a little a time, as the days allowed until I made my way around the house.

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Top to bottom, left to right:
Hallway Closet– medicine boxes and family games

Boys’ Bedroom– rearranged furniture, donated items they’ve outgrown and worked on rotating toys again

Kitchen Cabinet-  this area always gets junked up…. I sorted receipts and tossed things we no longer need.

Master bathroom–  you would think that such a small area wouldn’t get so messy/cluttered.  HA.

Living room–  we recently rearranged all the furniture in this room per my hubby’s request.  I’m still trying to get use to the new arrangement but I like it a lot better since I pulled everything out of the bookcases and got rid of things we haven’t used in years.


Things I’ve noticed since the purge:

  • I don’t spend as long tidying up since we don’t have as much stuff laying around.
  • I actually know where things are again.  Love organization.  🙂
  • My boys have played with their toys more constructively.  And they clean up much better.
  • I have more time to interact with my kids since I’m not constantly running around trying to find a lost item or clean a crazy messy room.
  • I’m not as stressed out.  🙂   Yep, that alone makes the 27ish bags I dropped off at the local Goodwill totally worth it.  🙂  Like I tell my boys so often, “A tidy house is a happy house.”  And ‘tidy’ makes Mommy very happy.  🙂

For the month of October, I think my family will focus on the ‘spending’ category.  Budget freeze here we come.  I have a feeling this is going to be a looonnnng 31 days people!  😉

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Toys on Rotation

I’m not sure what your toy stash looks like but at my house, my kids are blessed to the max with toys.  😉  I’m pretty particular about the type toys my kids receive- toys that promote violence or contradict our family’s moral code are out.  I prefer to buy my kids toys that are fun and educational, so when people ask about gifts for my boys, I try to steer them in that direction.  🙂

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And it just so happens that we receive a lot of cool hand-me-down toys from family members whose children have outgrown them.  One of the perks of being the ‘baby’ in the family, I suppose.  😉

I love having so many people who love gifting my children….that’s a huge blessing (to say the least)  but I got tired of seeing toys all over the house long after playtime was over.  So I had to come up with a system that would work in our little house.  That’s when ‘toys on rotation’ was born.

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Here’s how it works:  we store a certain amount of toys in the kids’ room, all others are placed in containers and stored in the basement.  After 6 months or so, we pull out a couple containers and switch things out.  That’s it.  It’s that simple.

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And honestly, my kids seem to play so much better with less.  And clean-up time isn’t near as overwhelming now that we’ve cutback on how much we have out at a time.

Take our wooden train set, for example.  I considered giving it away. I felt like my boys were starting to outgrow it and they hadn’t played with that particular set in about a year.  But Sunshine asked about it one day out-of-the-blue and voila! It’s like Christmas time at our house!  I love it when that happens!   😉

SEVEN [Simplified]

For several months I’ve been feeling the need to concentrate more on things of first importance.  It’s so easy to get caught up in the busy-ness of ‘life’ that we forget to ‘live.’  So with that in mind, I’ve been taking small steps toward living a simpler, fuller life.  And then I happened upon this video [below].  It might have made me giddy.  A little.  😉

Although I admire Jen’s determination, I don’t think I could make such drastic changes, so I devised my own version to do what I think will work best for my family.  And the best part?  I ran the idea by my sweet hubby and he’s totally on board.  😉  So here’s my family’s list [simplified].

SEVEN

7 months. 7 areas of focus for simpler living:

  1. POSSESSIONS: Full house purge. Donate excess to charity or individual families. (4 wks= 1 area/week)

  2. NUTRITION: No fast food. No prepackaged/processed meals. Real food as much as possible.

  3. SPENDING: No excess spending. Money saved can be given to families or individuals as the need arises. Cheap/free family entertainment only.

  4. GROWTH: Christian book study. Build character traits and cultivate family relationships with devotions/ family games, etc.

  5. SERVICE: Focus on visitation and acts of service for widows/ orphans, etc. Volunteer at soup kitchen, take groceries to elderly, etc.

  6. MEDIA: Refrain from all technological based entertainment. Game-cube, leapsters, and movies (aside from work/school) are shelved.

  7. RECYCLE: Reduce waste and recycle.

This month [is it September already?] we’ll be focusing on our possessions.  Need vs Wants.  There’s a lot of purging to do around my house so wish me luck!  😉

So what do you think?  If you decided to make small changes to your family core, what would they be?

Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
~William Morris