Monday, February 11, 2008

Book Recommendations for Organizing Your Home.

Recently I borrowed a few books about organizing from my friend, Amy. I knew before I read the books that my house is a mess. OH BOY! do I now realize in how much of a mess I've been living!!

First I read Smart Organizing: Simple Strategies for Bringing Order to Your Home by Sandra Felton. Mrs. Felton describes ways to go about decluttering your home one step at a time. I really appreciated her 80/20 rule. My understanding of this rule is that if you improve your home (or room, or closet, or drawer) by 20% it will seem like you've improved it by 80%. That gives me a lot of freedom and hope. I don't have to improve everything at once, or even everything in a single room at once. Bit by bit I can organize the mess and create beauty.

Mrs. Felton also provides some amazing ideas for maintaining your home. Like keeping a roll of paper towels and all purpose cleaner under your bathroom sink so you can clean any gunk off right when you see it. Maybe you already do this, so bear with me, but this was a new idea to me. It makes sense! How many times do I see toothpaste or soap gunk on the bathroom counter and think "I should get a paper towel and wipe that up" but I don't because I don't want to take the time to go to the kitchen for the paper towel and then to the hall closet for the cleaner. But if it's all right there under the counter I'll take the 30 seconds necessary to wipe it up rather than being annoyed about it all day (or all week).

The other book I've read is a "two-in-one:" The Messies Superguide and When You Live with a Messie also by Sandra Felton. Through this book I realized that I'm an average housekeeper. Dust on the coffee table doesn't bother me but washing dishes so we have something to eat on makes me crazy! I feel encouraged to know I'm average and don't have to live up to my friends' standards of cleanliness.

The book also opened my eyes to the way Joel has been thinking and feeling about our stuff. This was HUGE for me. I now understand why we have piles and piles of stuff we haven't used for years in our basement. I see that when I declutter (box up the junk and haul it to the Salvation Army) it's very difficult for him. (I have to say he's doing really well in this regard and NOT going through the boxes I've packed up. He's trusting me not throw out any of his treasures.)

This book included a couple of short chapters on decorating your home once you have it cleaned up. She walks you through how to choose colors, textures and furniture. I feel VERY inspired to create a home that is beautiful as well as functional.

There you have it. I'm inspired to work on my home and maintain the work I've already accomplished. If you are feeling inspired, too, click here to go read more about Sandra Felton. You might also check out Laura at I'm an Organizing Junkie. She has a lot of great ideas and links, also.

3 comments:

Amy said...

You've been busy! Maybe you could use a cup of tea and a little relaxing?! :)

Amy said...

One more thing...I have found it very helpful to have my cleaners (both for glass and a disinfectant) and paper towels in the bathroom. Andy put a cheap paper towel holder up on the inside of the bathroom cabinet door under the sink so I didn't have to use any of my storage space or move them to get to the other things stored under there. Just a thought that has worked for me! :)

Billie said...

If you lived closer, I'd take your stuff from you for my adoption yardsale!

I'm an in betweener too. I hate clutter, but am not anal that I can't let my house a disaster to go up to bed early. Breathe people breathe...I think people need to remember that!

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