This is the widow’s mite of blog posts on organization. I am not, by nature, a tidy person. If you listen closely you can hear my parents snickering.
My room was often what my mother called “a fire hazard.” One could be forgiven for thinking that a fully packed suitcase had exploded in there. Daily. For thirteen years.
College was no different. The lines of demarcation between halves of the dorm rooms was made with clothing. The floors on my roommates’ sides were visible. Mine were not. I met my husband during this time, and after we were engaged, he looked nervously around my apartment. I’d asked him what was wrong. He shook his head and said, “I just want our house to be clean.”
And so it began, my nine-year odyssey in housekeeping. Met mostly with failures, I have had a few successes, and it’s those that I’d like to share with you today.
My tidy mites:
The most ground-breaking discovery that I have made in the realm of laundry has been the advice to relegate its washing to one day a week. Impossible, I thought, when I read it in Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Home book. But Mrs. Meyers is a mom of nine and probably knows a thing or two about it, so I took her at her word. She suggested I do it on Monday so that the family has clean clothes for the week. And so I did. The result: total success. I spend all day Monday washing and drying our clothes and fold them Monday night and Tuesday during the day. Since there are few household tasks more dreadful than putting away laundry (perhaps changing the sheets on the bunk beds), I have the older children put away their own clothes. The rest of the week, the kiddos put their dirty laundry in a laundry bin in their rooms, and I don’t have to think about it for the rest of the week.
God in His infinite mercy gave me a very organized husband, so one day after coming home to a heap of broken, unused toys in our basement, he flew out the door and bought a bunch of plastic bins. He sorted the toys, each category going in its own bin. And then he bought plastic shelving to put in our basement on which the bins fit easily. This has truly revolutionized how our kids play with and take care of their toys and gives us an objective measure for how many toys we have in our house: if there are no more bins, something’s got to get tossed or donated before we can take another thing in.
I could go on…oh, wait, nope, I can’t. The rest of the house is still a problem area. I have nine more years to come up with two more great ideas. Lately I’ve considered getting bins for the kids. But, alas, they don’t fit.
January is National Get Organized Month. Have you had any success in organizing your house? Please share your organizing ideas in the comments below!
Copyright 2016 Meg Matenaer
All photos courtesy of Meg Matenaer (2016)