August 08, 2017

Sorting Donations

Sorting out donations is never easy. But once you have it all done, you have to make time to pack the car and take them to your chosen charity.

This week is going to be one of those weeks where I'll be doing just that - sorting out donations. Then, next week, I'll be taking them to my chosen charity. I haven't sent anything away for about a month, but I'm looking forward to doing it again.

I do have the Donation Box full of stuff; and a bag of clothes I'm not going to miss. However, I really do need to go through my wardrobe to see which things I honestly do wear and what I don't, so I can sort out my wardrobe for the next 2 years.

The home office isn't looking much better - even though I keep making promises to myself that I'm going to get my butt in and sort out this horrible mess here. I just keep on procrastinating (and admitting I'm one is a good thing; at least I know I am one - saying that I'm not is living in denial). 

But last night, I did have a good step forward in the ways of cleaning up my kitchen. I heard a noise in there - in the dark - and started searching for the critter that might have been hiding around my kitchen. I sprayed insecticide in all the corners, under the stove and under the fridge... but nothing came out. I search on top of all the cabinets I could reach, but still I found nothing. So, I spent the night wondering how the noises came about, but I also took down a few things off the cabinet where my mugs are stored and cleaned off the grease from those items and thought to reuse them in the office as artwork for the walls. 

Over the next few weeks, I'll be looking through my kitchen again and working out exactly what I need, what I don't and seeing which cookbooks I want to have in my collection (which will most probably be all of them!). So, once I do made a delivery to Vinnies, the living room will look better, and so will my home. 

And seeing I'm not op-shopping for a few months, I'm saving myself money too. I just want to save up for some things over Christmas for my family. Well, until my next post, tell us all what you've been up to. How is your decluttering going? Are you being the procrastinator - like me - or is it going smoother for you? 

August 05, 2017

Little Things

At this time of year, I find that life slackens off. There's no big celebrations - like Christmas or Easter - to worry about yet. And New Years Eve is a little way off. 

So, what I do is organise myself to look through the little things I've been putting off for a while. 

Quite often it's the little things that make the bigger things easier to deal with, don't you think? I've been looking at my craft gear, and wondering what to do with it. So, over the past month, I've gathered together all the yarn I've collected over the years and decided to make a throw for the bed. It's useful, and I'm not throwing out anything. 

The art gallery has asked me to take part in an art demonstration over November and so I pulled together a few photos and proposal to display some of my works around Christmas time and to show off some of my works there too. Not only will I be able to sell off some of my stock during that time, I will also be making room for new stock as well.  This is another way of decluttering through another means - and the only thing it'll cost me is the usual 20% commission... but I've made pricing easy for them by putting everything into small, medium and large price ranges and rounding the prices up or down. 

I'm also looking at books. Yesterday, I visited a family member who is in a retirement home and she receives ARC books (these are books which are sent out to people to read before publication to see what needs removing, adding to or if it needs more proofreading). I love reading these books; as it show a sneak peek behind the scenes of book before it's really shown to anyone... well, I also collect them. And so our family member gave me a pile of them from her collection; as once she reads them, the doesn't want them anymore. But with me, I'd reread them for pleasure. 

The little things for me right now, is to do out my wardrobe, figure out what needs to go in my office (yep, still haven't worked out that place yet) and keep on working on tweaking the rest of the place. But things will still arise no matter how long I work at this. So, how is your place going? 

July 26, 2017

Cleaning In the Kitchen

A part of decluttering is also cleaning parts of the house that really need it - like the kitchen, bathroom and the floors.

You feel so much better when all of that is done and you look at it and wonder why you left it for so long!

Yesterday, it was a nice cool day and I had time up my sleeve to clean the kitchen blinds and the cupboard doors above the stove... and believe me when I say that this part of my kitchen was really, really horribly disgusting with grease!

I've been in this townhouse for 15 years this September, and I've cleaned the rangehood (not that it's a useful bit of kit for the kitchen - it doesn't take the smoke from cooking anywhere but the smoke detector in the living room! So I don't use it!) around 5 times. Every single time I've come away with sticky muck all over my hands, fingers and arms... oh, yeah, gross!

So, yesterday, I grabbed the ladder from the upstairs wardrobe and really seriously got into the cleaning. 

Now, I've been slowly cleaning the blinds with sanitising wipes from under the sink every few nights - one by one - and they've been getting cleaner. But, now, they were out of my reach and I needed the ladder. It took me another half and hour and 8 wipes to clean the blinds. I also fixed up the long stick which had seen better days so it doesn't break or gets stuck, with duct tape. 
Then, it was onto the cupboard doors and the top of the rangehood... yep, leave the messiest part of this till last! I couldn't get the grease off there until I used Gumption and a green scourer! But it worked well!

I hated being up the ladder - because I hate heights. 

It took me around 2 hours to get the blinds, the rangehood and the cupboard cleaned. While I was up that ladder, I also cleaned the window sill and along the top of the window frame where a lot of grease gets trapped too! 

I felt exhausted, filthy and greasy afterwards and seriously wanted a shower from it all.

But it's worth it... don't you think? 

July 22, 2017

Bedroom Closet

I'm at it again. Yep, I've just jumped right in and decluttered something on a whim and have enjoyed the results. 

This time, it's my scarves - and believe me when I say that I didn't know I had so many of the darned things! I still have a few from when I was working at the RACQ! I had others which really aren't my style and then I thought to move the two boxes which house the Summer scarves and the Winter scarves down a shelf so I can see what's in them. This wasn't a bad idea when you really think about it... seeing I'm not a tall person, and the boxes are lovely, have a handle and hold everything I need in them, it really does neaten up the whole cupboard.

But this did mean moving everything on the bottom shelf to the top shelf... and I didn't mind that either, I found a few things I had been looking for and I could put them away into other places around the room as well. This was great!

The best thing was that I finally got to use the scarf-holder I scored for Christmas years ago and it holds so many scarves! And I have that hanging on the inside of the door - as you can see - and I'm hoping to put one of my belt-holders next to it soon... so I don't have to go rummaging through the wardrobe for belts anymore. 

But that, my friends, is another item for another day! So, how is your decluttering going? All good I hope. Do drop a line below in the comments and let us know how you're going with your place. 

July 16, 2017

Moving House

Oh! Not me.

Not yet in any case!

One of my neighbours moved house in the last week, and they moved into a bigger place; as they were expecting a new addition to their family. 

However, I have noticed something about people when they move house:  they don't clean out the house until they move from the place.

This is exactly why I'm decluttering my place now! When you declutter your home, and get rid of the things you no longer wish to keep, and have the things you want to keep, you only take the things to the next house that truly belong there.

I know this sounds so very basic, it sounds as though it's the dumbest thing I'm telling you. But really, I've watched so many people move from this unit complex; and they throw out bag after bag of rubbish on the days after the moving van has been. I mean, exactly what did they take with them to the next place for them to leave all the junk behind? 

I'm constantly looking through my cupboards, cleaning out bags of paperwork, donating books, clothes, old sheets, old towels, shoes, Christmas decorations and other things I seriously won't be needing in my house just so I won't be dragging them to the next place to clutter up my home. 

And that's just the thing:  when I do move into a larger place, I will be moving into a place where I'll be spreading out my furniture, hanging pictures on the wall I've had hidden behind doors and in wardrobes and I'll be decorating my next home in such a way I won't be needing to buy anything for it really - well, okay, a new Christmas Tree or a large floor rug, but that's about it!

I don't see how keeping so much crap and not cleaning out a pantry once every 6 months, or cleaning out the laundry once a year can hurt people - especially when you know you have to move at some point in the future. And just like Peter Walsh has been telling us: it only takes 10 minutes to start out cleaning one drawer. You have to remember a couple of things: be honest, be brutal and be positive about what you're doing. 

I'm always that way when I declutter and clean. It takes time and patience, but really, once you get going (and you know you're going to move house in a month's time), you will feel better for it when you have cleaned out the kitchen and you are only packing what you're going to take with you.

Just think:  when you return to clean the house, most of what you'll be cleaning will be just a quick wipe-down... that's if you clean as you declutter. If you don't, you create more work for yourself. 

July 14, 2017

Under The Tub

The little cupboard under the wash tub is always something people miss. I find it's a place I throw everything and try to ignore it as it's out of sight, out of mind.

But over the past few weeks, I've bought some work caddies and really, I can't ignore that space anymore - I have to really work on it to make it work better. 

So, last week, I sat down on one of my dropcloths for painting and pulled everything out and sorted through what I needed, what I didn't, and what could be worked on - found it wasn't as daunting as I first thought it was going to be. 

The main things which made it so daunting were all the bottles in there - the empty, half-empty and glass bottles - all sitting around in there looking intimidating. So, I pulled them out and looked what was inside them, which was shoe polish, polishing rags and brushes, and put them into ziplock bags. This keeps the cockroaches out of the polish, out of the brushes and rags and keeps the whole place neat and tidy. I added those two bags to the work caddy, freeing up plenty of space under the tub. 

Then, I found about 3 or 4 spray bottles. They all had either water or vinegar and water in them... they were all half full and too big of the work caddy - all but one, which was nice and small enough for it. So, I emptied out the water inside that, and put the vinegar and water solution from one large one into the smaller one and added that one to caddy.

Yay! Even more space... and three empty spray bottles. Well, okay, two, one of them is for terrariums; so I keep that filled with water, in case I need it for my terrarium in the living room or my bedroom. 

Well! How was that! I cleaned out all those empty bottles and spray bottles and found so much more space! Now, to put back the things which are needed for the laundry. I put back the bleach, the vinegar, detergent and bi-carb soda and stain remover and now, there's more than enough room in that little cupboard to have everything in there, instead of it all sitting around the washing machine. And the best thing is that I can get in and wash the floor so much better too without having to go around things that should be living inside that cupboard. 

I'm so glad I can go back and clean out a cupboard like that and not be worried about what to find in there. Seeing I've done this one before, all there was in it was too much of one thing and not enough of another. Now, it's got just enough room for everything it needs to be a small laundry. But in all seriousness, I can't wait until I move from this townhouse and into a place with a big enough laundry where I can put my clothes horse, ironing board and fit everything into their own cupboards without downsizing everything all the time and encroaching on my living room. 

So, how are you going with your clean out? Let us all know in the comments section below.

June 28, 2017

Small Things

I've been busily working away at smaller things lately. There's the entertainment unit - which was filled to the brim with VCR tapes I'd like to see on dvd. And then there was my wardrobe that I worked through again rather successfully.

And now, I'm looking at the smaller things in the house. You know those things around the place, they make the machine of the house work more efficiently, smoothly and easily. I had to only look around for the past week because I had no money to put towards it.

But today was pay day, and I went out and did my grocery shopping and bought the things I needed to make the house run better again. 

I bought two of these work caddies to use around the house. One is for the upstairs bathroom, and the other is for the downstairs area. I think they'll work really well! And them being both red will make them stand out too. I'll be able to put them away in the same place every time and they'll work out for the house each time too. 

Then there was the garden hose connections I had to buy new ones of because the old ones were broken by people stuffing around with them too much. So, I bought good, expensive ones and I just hope nobody screws with them. I hate to use profanity on here, but really I just don't need somebody stuffing with my property when I'm not here. And disconnecting my own hose when I need it there to use to wash my car or water my lawn isn't a choice. If everyone else around me can have their hoses connected without a worry, why can't I? 

Anyway, I hope nobody breaks these ones. 

But the house is coming along so well! 

I've begun knitting a throw for my bed; using all my yarn that I have in the suitcase up the top of my wardrobe. This will get rid of the yarn stocked up in there... and make something nice and colourful. Otherwise, I've been getting rid of crappy yarn I no longer need and can't use or want to give away either into the bin.
I scored a new iron through my Fly-Buys and it's a Panasonic... it's lovely, light and I could iron with it forever! I used it the other day and didn't want to put it away. Now, that's a first for me!

Anyway, I'm still going through my bedroom and looking at things to see if I need them. My money box collection is bigger than I first thought; and yet most of them are empty. And I'm looking at what clothes I really do wear compared to the ones I just love to have because they look good.

Yep, it's the small things that I'm looking into this time around... really, isn't it the devil in the details that keep things going? Of course it is.