Friday, February 19, 2010

Simplification, for real

I think I've spoken here about our need to simplify our lives. We've said it time and time again, but this is amplified by the existence of our lovely daughter. We want to be able to spend as much time with her as possible, not wading through paperwork, doing hours of dishes (because we hadn't done any in awhile), searching for things (because we have too much)... So we're on a mission and we're actually getting somewhere with it (finally).

We've made lists. Lists of things that need to be done to get our house to a place where we can breathe. Things like clean out closets, reorganize cupboards, figure out a system to deal with papers and coupons and then DO IT, cleaning out that huge pile of stuff that's accumulated behind the love seat... We've also got lists of things that will need to be done daily, weekly, biweekly, monthly, and semi-annually. We've started to figure out WHEN it's all going to get done. We've got a calendar. We're writing down committments outside the home that we each have. We're writing down our dinners for each night (we've always meal planned, but now we're assigning meals to a night so we can't say nothing sounds good). We're writing down which of the items on that first list are getting done that evening.

So far, so good. We started on Monday evening. We cleaned off the end tables and pared down what was there. One night DH scrubbed the sink. When I got home from the grocery, I cleaned out the refrigerator. One evening I scrubbed the stovetop. One evening I put away baby girls's wardrobe and cleaned up her room. Tuesday we were home on a snow day (which was SO great!) and we ended up cleaning up a lot of the 2nd floor. Our closet is emptier (thanks to three boxes of clothes we're donating), the floor is cleaner, and we're a lot more relaxed in our bedroom.

One task from that day, though, made me more emotional than I ever thought it would have...putting away maternity clothes. I loved being pregnant. I would love to be pregnant again...if there weren't a baby at the end. I love baby girl, but I am SO not ready to have another baby. But I am ready to be pregnant again. Yes, I was self-conscious about the way my flabby belly looked. But I loved being that close to my little girl, twenty-four hours a day. So I cried when I put away those clothes (and packed away those that I had borrowed). I miss my days of my little girl inside me (and not fighting me when I try to get her to go to sleep).

Where was I (as I wipe a tear from my eye again)? Ah yes, simplification.

This weekend we're due to: clean out the oven, get rid of the stuff behind the love seat, figure out a coupon organization system (I'm a person who keeps all inserts, collects many other coupons, sometimes buys additional inserts...I'm a couponing maniac. I used to have a binder with all my coupons sorted by type put into baseball card inserts, but that is too much maintenance for me now. So I have a plan now that I'm going to try), deal with the stacks of paperwork and figure out how we're going to deal with them in the future, clean out the food cupboards, and also clean, purge, and sort the cookware cupboards. That may sound like a lot, but I think it should still be a fairly relaxing weekend.

I'll try to keep updated here all the things we've done to get our house simplified. The only negative side effect to this is that we're missing out on many TV shows. We don't turn the TV on during weeknight evenings while the baby is awake, typically, so we get about 1 1/2 to 2 hours to watch TV each evening and now we're cleaning during it. But that's okay. Even without the TV, I'm seeing that we're both a lot happier and more relaxed with a cleaner, emptier house.

1 comment:

Danica said...

Simplification is key! I have to say that once you are organized you will feel better and feel organized and not over whelmed. I always wanted to do organization for a living, so if you have any questions let me know. I'm queen of this! HA Good luck!