I am a packrat. I have boxes and boxes of teenage notes tucked away in my childhood room at my parents’ house. I have a cabinet full of my kids’ artwork starting with finger paintings made when they were only three months old. Our pantry and medicine chest are filled with expired products. I am terrible at throwing things away. I hold onto clothes that I haven’t worn in years just in case I one day change my mind. This “keep everything” lifestyle used to workout okay when it was just me, my husband and our labrador living in our modest Cape but nearly four years into having children, something needs to change. We have too much stuff and our home is getting much too cluttered even though we have plenty of storage. Part of the problem is that I am just not making the effort to stay organized.
The New Year is the perfect time to try to make a change in our house so I am vowing here and now that my family and I will become more organized in 2013. I am almost finished updating the kids’ wardrobes and getting rid of all the old clothes that either don’t fit anymore or are out of season and worn out. I have started the rather mundane chore of going through the piles of plastic toys in our house and even donated a trunk load of our old toys to our daycare. I bought a few new drawer organizers and we are well on our way to living in a less cluttered house in years ahead but there is still a ton of work to be done (like cleaning out our THREE junk drawers in our kitchen…who has THREE junk drawers anyway?).
My husband and I have implemented the new baby doll rule that for every new doll we get, one needs to go. I think this is a good rule of thumb with everything so that every time something new comes into the house, something old or worn out should be tossed away or donated. I like this rule in theory but I know that I will have a hard time with it because well, as I said, I am a packrat.
How do you and your family stay organized and keep your home from becoming overcrowded with stuff? Any tips for this packrat on how to part with some of my prized possessions?
packrat photo credit here.