Sunday, February 12, 2012

Organizing Challenge Update #1


I told you about my plan to declutter and re-organize our basement area. Progress has been a little slow, but I did make a some headway. To be honest, the whole thing is a bit overwhelming to me. That will not surprise those who know me well. To help me get over this brain-paralysis I contract when taking on a project of this type, I'm working my way through the Organization PROCESS I read about over at I'm an Organizing Junkie. This is an acronym for:

Plan of attack
Remove items
Organize into piles
Evaluate plan
Solve/simplify any remaining issues
Smile, relax, enjoy!

So, I've been working out my Plan of Attack. I am suppose to:
plan my project & decide which areas I want to address - move kids' computer up to school room; find better way to store toys and games; consider toy-rotation system; condense/purge sewing and craft items; create a sewing area that is more functional and efficient and attractive; find homes or purge items stacked/parked on floor

Then I was supposed to make a list – evaluate present system, what is working, what isn’t working, devise new system – determine budget – develop timeline.  This step is where I became totally overwhelmed. There were so many cabinets of 'STUFF' to consider and so many possibilities, and how in the world could I figure out what I wanted to do with it all anyway if I couldn't even figure out what all was buried here and there and everywhere?! ACH!!!

So I did the easy thing first (thanks to Nony at A Slob Comes Clean for this idea).

The kids helped me move the computer and its paraphernalia upstairs, creating a computer center at the end of the school room. Then I purged/sorted all that was left. 

Green Counter Before

Green Counter After

As I worked, it became much easier to think about how I wanted to use these spaces, and logical/realistic possibilities about how to organize them. I began a list once the computer was moved out of the way. Actually, I began 3 lists. One for Toys, one for Crafting, one for Sewing.  I began jotting down items I knew I would need to make a space for, and ideas about how to organize/contain them, as they became clear to me. Did I solve all my organization needs/problems for these areas? Nope! Did I make a good start? YES! And typing this up for you all to read (or not read) is helping me stay motivated.

Next step? Remove items – "empty the space completely so you can start from a clean slate – this is much more effective than just shuffling everything around.   Remove then sort & purge"  --  To do this for all areas I am working on would be, well, too much. Considering we had some activity or other almost everyday last week and had company coming this past weekend, the idea of emptying out all those cabinets and drawers and clearing out from underneath those counters and piling it all up in one spot, well, it just was not going to happen. Again, I started with the easy stuff. The green counter. The craft table. The play kitchen. The kids and I emptied all these areas. We sorted out bent-broken-no-longer-usable items and immediately put those into a trashbag. We tossed items for donation right into the 'donate' box, and put away things that had a home elsewhere right where they belonged right away. As a result, we hardly had anything left to sort! 

This coming week, we will continue the Removal Step for the cabinets and drawers. I'll continue my list-making. We'll  be moving that toy/game cabinet upstairs to house our bins for hats and gloves and such. I think we'll move a dresser into its place to store my fabric stash. My plan is to work at least 30 minutes a day. By this weekend I should have another update for you.

I'm linking this post to this week's challenge update over at The link-up was supposed to be on Friday, but I'm happy to get it in before the weekend is over!


  1. Wow! Love the plan. I tend to jump in without one and then end up overwhelmed. This needs to be done in several areas of my house. Soon!

  2. happy to be an inspiration, Kim! Having the plan in place really does help. Funny thing - I'm finding it a bit therapeutic - who would've thought?
    Thanks for stopping by!


You Might Also Enjoy:

these related posts