1. Go through kitchen cupboards and put anything that's in boxes in glass jars.
This was completed during Week #2.
2. Clean the freezer. I'm going to remove each thing from the freezer (a multi-shelved one that is separate from the refrigerator/freezer in the kitchen), and determine if it is something to keep or toss. The freezer will be defrosted and cleaned; and then items put back by type (e.g., vegetables on one shelf, fruit on another shelf).
I removed more food (about a half of a kitchen trash bag) from the freezer that I knew we wouldn't be eating. Although it is difficult for me to look at food waste (both the waste of money spent on the food as well as the time I spent preparing it), there was no point in having space taken in the freezer if the food wasn't going to be used.
Also, I washed all the shelves on the door and then started grouping similar items together (e.g., vegetables, frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries). It's starting to look much better already.
The big part - removing the items from the main part of the freezer, defrosting the freezer, and organizing the remaining items on the shelves - is left. Those activities are what I need to do during Week #4.
3. Clean the girls' closet. One half of the closet has become very disorganized, and become the spot to place things that need to put away in another location (e.g., shelf, drawer).
The before picture is the cumulative effect of what happened
during the past year.
More pressing matters (e.g., parents' health issues, father's death)
took my attention away from maintaining this closet.
It took 5 hours to clean, and
was worth every minute spent doing it.
This is what I'm use to seeing (the after picture)...
not the disorganization.
I thought only half the closet was in shambles.
Nope...it was the whole closet.
This is the right hand side
(the pictures in the first set are the left hand side of the closet).
Sophia and I took the time to put pictures on the wall of the closet so when the girls go in the closet to get games, toys, clothes, or blankets, they have things to look at on the walls.
They went through the games and determined which ones they still played with. Of the remaining ones, I taped the edges of the boxes that had come apart from overuse.
We put the items that had sentimental value or belonged to me when I was growing up, in two areas that are higher to reach. I explained what these items were, and who made them and/or who they were from (if applicable) so the girls knew why I was keeping them.
There were also things that I decided that it was time to let go of - like my aviation textbooks, study guides, and other items related to flying - that I knew I would not be using again. Although the flight bag represented a time in which I studied and passed my private pilot's written test, I never got my license because I didn't complete the required flight time. (I had an unexpected bad landing that I needed assistance with from my flight instructor after a string of very good landings. He - and I - couldn't explain what happened to the plane and why it reacted as it did. I never flew a plane after that.) Although these items were a part of my past, I was ready to let them go.
By the time we were done, we had one large and one small bag of trash; and four large bags of items to donate. The closet looks so much better, and there is significantly more space. Although we should have done this months ago, I am happy it is done now before the next homeschool year starts.
There's a sense of peace when I look at the closet now...not one of stress and anxiety.
Last week, I mentioned that I was reading Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui. The author noted several effects that clutter can have on a person. I found them interesting, and thought I'd share them:
Having clutter can:
- make you feel tired and lethargic.
- keep you in the past.
- affect your weight.
- confuse you.
- affect the way people treat you.
- make you procrastinate.
- cause disharmony between people.
- make you feel ashamed.
- put your life on hold.
- can depress you.
- create excess baggage (as in when you go on a trip you tend to take more than you need).
- dull your sensitivity and enjoyment of life.
- cause extra cleaning.
- make you disorganized.
- health or fire hazard.
- distract you from important things.
The author noted that when she's in Bali (where she lives half the time), there's a special ceremony known as "The Calling." She said that "as people go though life, parts of themselves fracture and split off." This generally happens gradually, but if it happens quickly (e.g., hurt in a road accident), it can weaken the spirit of those people.
She explained "a similar calling-back process happens when you clear the clutter in your life. As you release the things you no longer love or use, you call back to yourself the parts of your spirit that have been attached to them, and attached to the emotional needs and memories associated with those objects.
"In so doing, you bring yourself powerfully into present time. Your energy, instead of being dispersed in a thousand different, unproductive directions, becomes more centered and focused. You feel more spiritually complete and more at peace with yourself. All this comes from simply clearing clutter. Amazing, isn't it?"