I have a secret and it’s one I am not proud of at all. First, many of you know that I live in an old colonial house that has been in my family for four generations (my girls are the fifth generation to live here). My great-grandparents purchased the house about 100 years ago and the unique history of the house still amazes me. The original part of the house was built in 1780′s and at some point they moved a second house from Massachusetts (as the story is told) and attached it to the existing house which consisted of simply four rooms (two on the first floor and two on the top floor).
Well as each generation inherited the house from the previous generation they also inherited “the stuff” left behind. And since my great-grandparents, my grandparents and sometimes my parents believed in not throwing anything away it meant A LOT of stuff. In fact my father is still very much of the “hoarder” mentality and I have a hard time trying to get him to let go of items…and realize that he would be so much happier with less. And since my grandfather operated as a mechanic out of the garage on the property, to this day we are still finding things he “buried” in the back section of the property. In the old days they usually had their own cemetery and junk yard on their property and we sometimes find neat old milk jugs when we go for a walk in the back (although often times it is stuff we send to the scrap metal yard).
You may be asking why is that important and why I am telling you this. Well, the reason is I have decided that after four generations it’s time to clear out the clutter and keep only the stuff we need, use and want to pass down to the girls. And since we have a lot to go through…I wanted to share my journey with you to simplify as my favorite saying is “Less Stuff More Life”. And since I will be sharing this journey with you I wanted to share with you my dirty little secret. My spare guest bedroom.
Since my mother passed away six years ago we have slowly started sorting through things (many yard sales!) and have re-claimed much of the house…except the spare bedroom. Here things have piled up from my mother’s belongings, special photos or paperwork from my grandparents and great-grandparents that I have found while shifting through things and honestly…lots of stuff from our move from New Orleans 10 years ago. In fact when I asked my husband what exactly is in the room he said “a lot of my stuff” from his college and teen years that he brought with him into our marriage.
So in the cleansing of our lives we have decided on two things. 1. Less stuff: which means decluttering this room (and any remaining stuff from my family still in our garage/sheds) in addition to rethinking what we buy so we don’t replace the clutter with new clutter. And 2. cleansing of the debt that usually occurs when collecting all this stuff. Hopefully when we achieve both of these things we will have a more simpler and clear life and will be able to enjoy our family more and worry less about projects…and money.
As I go through this process I will regularly share posts on certain aspects of the cleansing. Whether it’s how to organize a yard sale (when storage is limited but stuff is overwhelming) and to how to purge one room at a time to simple things like better organization to how to achieve a debt-free lifestyle (this one might be a longer process).
So I hope you will read these posts and enjoy my journey and leave me comments on how you have achieve a more simple lifestyle. And since my friends will tell you I’m a bit “sensitive” to the clutter (meaning I have a hard time inviting people over afraid of what they would think) I wanted to show you my dirty little secret and an additional photo of my living room which is an example of what we have done to one room to reclaim the house…and our lives.
Here are some books to help with the process of organizing your life and home:
- Organizing from the Inside Out, Second Edition: The Foolproof System For Organizing Your Home, Your Office and Your Life
- Organizing Plain and Simple: A Ready Reference Guide With Hundreds Of Solutions to Your Everyday Clutter Challenges
- Making Room for You: A Practical Guide to Organizing Your Home
- Organizing Solutions for People With Attention Deficit Disorder: Tips and Tools to Help You Take Charge of Your Life and Get Organized
- Small Space Organizing: A Room-by-Room Guide to Maximizing Your Space
Posts on this site may contain an affiliate link. Please see full disclosure policy for more information.