Monday, January 30, 2012

Clearing Spaces: The Living Room - Getting Started

Now I remember why I always start in the kitchen whenever I'm deciding what room to begin with, and that's because the kitchen, even when messy, is the most structured room in the house.  There are drawers, cabinets, shelf space, etc.  Whereas now, in the living room, I've entered the jungle.

It's much more difficult to navigate because:
1.) It's bigger, but more importantly
2.) There's more stuff, and
3.) Less structure

Not to mention it also houses the wayward corner otherwise known as "I Don't Know What To Do With It" Land.

Embarking on the Trail: Picking Your Route
DAY 1: consisted of stepping across the threshold of the kitchen and embarking on the first foothill of... whatever.  This happened to be Kali's bed. 

So that took up Day 1. 

I didn't want to get rid of it.  I didn't like the idea of moving it downstairs to the garage where it could potentially get dirty and possibly house a nest of baby spiders or something, so what I've decided to do is keep it since it's like an ottomon, and I'm going to get some fabric to cover it, give it new life, and put it in front of the fire.  That's where Kali always wanted to be anyway.

DAY 2:
Moving toward the center of the room. This brought me to the lake of the carpet which required some generic clearing, organizing my DVD collection, etc.

 DAY 3:
Arriving at Base Camp
Then - you just start nibbling.  I started with what's closest.  The pile of stuff that didn't sell on E-Bay.  And then, the dead plant with the plastic flamingo and we'll call it a day.
 This kind of just got spread out - I tossed some stuff in the Take Out box, and some stuff I'm re-posting, and some stuff is currently sitting on my project desk as I try to decide whether to sell or toss.  I'm mostly in a quandry because it's stuff that is nice, that should sell, but it's not the right season.  O retail!

And then the flamingo guarding the deathly plant ~

 We'll come back tomorrow!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Clearing Spaces: The Kitchen Finale (I think)

This concludes the Kitchen Clearing - at least Round 1.  I'm going to wrap up the cupboards and drawers so we can move on to other areas of the house.  How long did this take me?

The Last Cupboard

 I used this for pet food primarily.

I don't see any reason to get rid of this - I used it to keep dry dog food.  I may need it again for any pets I foster...

And in the meantime, it can keep the cat dish.

 Now this stuff...
Is a hodgepodge - dish holder with random utensils and sun tea maker

The sun tea maker goes better in this cupboard with the canning jars...

And it just so happens I found this chamois cloth at Fred Meyer specifically for dishes - keeps the counter dry, rather than soggy, which was the main reason I put the dish holder away in the first place

Which is tied, ironically, to the utensils in the dish holder ~

Let's see what we have 
(or, rather, how many of these DON'T match!)

Not to mention how many prongs on these forks are out of whack 
since my dog over the years got ahold of them :)

Keeping the ones that match and/or the ones that I particularly like


And thus concludes The Kitchen...
I was hoping for something more climactic, but I guess a fistful of utensils can be quite epic for some.

Stay tuned for: The Living Room

Friday, January 27, 2012

Clearing Spaces: Kitchen Cupboards Part 3

These things manage to sprout and collect, and I think it's because I don't want to toss them for their environmental impact, but at some point, one has to come to grips with the fact that she's 

a.) not using them, and 
b.) lost the lids for many, rendering them useless anyway.

How to decide what to keep?
First, toss the items that have no lids, or you no very well you're not going to use them!
Canning jars stay - yes
Oh hey - I recognize this mixing bowl???  Let's grab that other one and put them together:
Strainer stays - but should go under the stove with the pots and pans
Can go!

The containers that have unique lids!
Since I reuse containers, this is a good way to know right away which lids go with what.
Also - these would make really great additions to my lunch drawer accessories




I got a new tea kettle for Christmas and the old one has been on the bottom shelf - so I think it's time for it to go.

 And, Rearrange the Shelves

Nice and clean!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Clearing Spaces: Kitchen Drawers - Part 1 of 2

In reality, I am out of the kitchen!  But in blog reality, I'm not quite finished.  So here is the first installment of clearing through the drawers. 

Top Drawer: Pretty clean but even still, I was kicking myself for not buying another filter for my water pitcher, but lo and behold, I already have one right here!  Even though it's in plain sight, if you're unaware what you have, you don't remember to even look.

The Hard One
As usual, step 1 is to always take everything out to see what you have, and therefore be able to start deciding what you don't need.

My mom has a dog, so it's nice to give this stuff away rather than just throwing it out.

This is weird I know - but the weirdest things can have their emotional impact.  This is something that the vet gave me to try and feed my cat with the night before she died.  Just this thing was hard to let go - I tried to justify potentially keeping it by thinking maybe I'd need it if I foster a cat in the future... but I decided that it really needs to go because it carries such an emotional (negative) weight with it, that's it not an object that needs to be in the house.  It's hard to let go - but, when you think about what you're making room for, that can help with the decision.

My cat's dish - which I decided not to let go.  But rather, I chose a different location for it...

The pet food cupboard - which is upcoming on the list to be cleared -
What's left? 
Gardening gloves - 
They can go with the other gloves in the hallway
 Moonflower seeds & Miracle Gro - 
They can go in the cupboard with the fish food - I don't really have a gardening area, these are the only 2 gardening type things I have, so it makes sense for now.
and the clump of sticky Christmas window gels?
They can go into the scary hallway closet with the other Christmas decorations...

3rd Drawer: The Plastic Bag Drawer

This can go

All the other bags can get stuffed into this container where they belong
What happens when I take the drawer out to give it a clean?

Well, I find more bags....

4th Drawer: Reusable Bag Drawer

I have an overabundance of bags!
Let's do something about that.

3 "Lunch" Bags.  Do I really need 3? The middle one I didn't even know I had because it was stuffed behind the drawers, and the red one I thought I lost, but it was just buried under all my other bags.
Also - do I really need 2 drawers for bags???


Adding 3 bags to the Take Out pile

Making 2nd Drawer into my Lunch Drawer
 I'm really bad about taking my lunch with me.  What better way to encourage this than to put all my lunch accessories into one place? 


One empty drawer - whatever will I do with it?