The Chaos is Winning: time to fight back against the clutter.

I don't know if it's hormones. I don't know if it's just because I tried to make my kids have more responsibility around the house (and thus stopped doing some jobs to force them to do them). I don't know if it's because I changed the jobs the girls were doing when they requested it - saying they were bored with their tasks and wanted to trade. I don't know... maybe it's because I just allowed myself to get lazy. Whatever the reason, my house is a disaster.

The only room in the house I feel even mildly proud of is the main bathroom, and that's because we spent the weekend replacing the nasty carpet that had been in there and putting down ceramic tile and laminate flooring. ((I'll try to get pics of it soon. My 13 yr old still has my camera from when she went to Vanderbilt University for the Berlin Wall anniversary seminars. ))

The rest of my house... well it's possibly the worst it has been since we moved into this new home. Even when my dishwasher was broken and dishes were piled everywhere, at least the other rooms were semi ok and laundry was kept caught up. Well, right now I can say I don't have piles of dishes in the floor and my cupboards are full of clean dishes which is nice,... but oh my goodness... the LAUNDRY and the CLUTTER!

I have to step over piles of dirty clothes to get into my bedroom, and then there's a HUGE mound of dirty laundry I have to step over to get to the master bathroom. That's not all that's all over the master bedroom. There's piles of stuff everywhere. Boxes, piles of paperwork and bills that need to be dealt with, school papers, things that need to be fixed or mended, Halloween boxes and decorations,and just stuff that doesn't have anywhere else to go. It's sad and I hate going in there. Not a good thing when it's where I'm supposed to relax and get a good night/day's sleep. The living room is awful too. We have one swivel chair that just tattered and torn and makes the room look shabby. The carpet is stained and smelly. And the kids don't listen to us at all anymore when we tell them no eating in the living room. Every single day we find dishes and cups and food all over the tables in there. Same for their shared bedroom. Their desk often has stacks of dishes and cups. Apple cores, banana peels, you name it. I haven't seen their carpet in weeks... not since we switched their rooms around and I organized it myself.

Let me tell you, the expensive organizers and even those folks you can hire to organize your room are USELESS when your kids are too lazy to put clothes in a dresser drawer (and then close it!) or throw away trash, or pick up after themselves. Their room is NASTY and it discourages me so much to look down the hallway at it. We moved here so the kids could have more room and a nicer newer home where the floors didn't have holes in them and the plumbing worked and there weren't drafts ... but they're treating their home like it's a dumpster. It makes me sad. Very sad.

I think, to be honest, in my case, it's burnout. I need a good long stretch of time without any kids here to come along behind me and mess it up, and no work to have to do, and no sleep to have to catch up... Just open the windows, crank up the music and get to work on getting it back to how the house is supposed to be.

I'm going to need boxes to toss in things that could bless another family and take it to a thrift store. We have several in town, and one has a big sign begging for donations. I need trash bags, and need to just toss everything that's stained or has holes or toys with missing pieces or are broken. Then I need to re-organize the girls' room. Obviously it's not working if they aren't using what I gave them. I need to buckle down and do load after load of laundry until it is ALL DONE. Then I can match up socks and get rid of the odd ones. I can finally box up all the clothes that no one wears or likes and get rid of them instead of them getting tossed in the floor and put back into the laundry cycle. I really hate taking clothes out of the hamper and finding folded stuff in there. HUGE PET PEEVE. I also need to figure out what to do about all the STUFF we own. We have a very small walk-in closet in our master bedroom I thought would be perfect for holding the tubs of seasonal clothes, Christmas stuff, other holiday decorations, and just stuff... but then there is no where for clothes!

I've told my husband I want to get a nice wooden storage shed when the tax refund comes in the spring. He does not like the idea, but it's not something I am going to compromise on. This house is STUFFED with STUFF and it has to stop. I can declutter to a point, but some things simply need to be stored. With six people in the house, we have tons of winter coats, shoes (winter ones and summer ones), winter blankets and comforters, etc. Tubs of seasonal clothes, the holiday stuff, boxes of mementos and things I want to keep for the girls. Then there's tools, remodeling supplies and scraps we can use for the next project. We even have an old wooden portable crib we were given when our oldest was born that we decided to keep for when we have grandkids come visit in the future... ETC.... Just lots of stuff. So until I get that shed, I have to deal with it all.

Flylady (at ) says you can't organize clutter, just get rid of it. But I can't get rid of all this stuff. I want to keep it, just not in my bedroom floor.

(Sorry this post is so rambling and random. I've been writing it between questions at work)

I can't do this alone. So I am relying on the Lord to give me the strength and determination and persistence I need. And I am relying on Flylady to give me the instructions. I am going to start her "31 babysteps" program tonight. I've done it before and it works so great, but I fall off the wagon :( . I am also following her ideas on decluttering and I will probably start off with her Crisis Cleaning 101.

I *know* Flylady works for me. I just have to get off my rear and get it done.

Wish me luck!

***EDIT: I have completed Day 1 of Flylady's 31 Babysteps. My sink is SHINY! In fact after I scrubbed the bottom of it, I didn't realize how dirty it had gotten. It makes my kitchen look great!


  1. Good luck in working your way through all the editing and organizing. It really is such a chore, but oh so worth the effort. Hugs, Marty

  2. I totally feel your pain.
    I does feel thankless at times, to see your work quickly undone by the children. And laundry should be simple but it's not.
    I have four girls and it is time to put away summer clothes and pull out the winter ones. Honestly, it makes me want to much work.Going through the handme downs-finding the right sizes.. In a perfect world we'd have large closets that could store both seasons of clothing a once.

    My Dh and I did finally sort the sock basket. We only kept the nicest and no more waiting for a mate to show up. We tossed quite a few singletons and all the grubby ones. I bleached what was left and no more basket.
    That only took us maybe an hour but that basket had been stressing me out for months.

    Sorry to go on so long...just wanted you to know you aren't the only one struggling with these things.

    Good Luck! You can go it!

  3. 4littleladybugs, thank you SO much for the comment! It does help more than you know to hear that others are dealing with the same things. Sometimes I feel so alone. It's been a rough week, and I've faltered more than I've accomplished. I want to blame it on the new work schedule since I'm filling in for people on vacation... but I know it's just because I can't bear to drag myself out of bed. The first thing I see is mountains of clutter and laundry reminding me immediately of what a terrible wife and homemaker I am. I prefer dreams. Congrats on the sock basket. I'll get to that point someday. I hope.


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I love getting comments, and I read every one. Thanks for coming by my site and reading my ramblings. I hope you have a wonderful day! -Patty

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