Friday, June 25, 2010

Simplicity: Getting Help

I don't know how many times I have gone through my cabinets, drawers, closets, and rooms, However, every time I look, nothing has really changed. Yes, I familiarize myself with what I have. Yes, I put things back in their appropriate places. Yes, I rearrange things. But nothing else changes.

I decided that I had enough of that. So, I called in reinforcements, aka. my cousin, Lisa. Lisa is one of those people who has an incredible gift of organization. She is the one who organizes her church's VBS. She is the one who organizes her sons' youth group fund raisers. She is the one who was serving sodas and cleaning up the church kitchen during Faye's shower at the same time! She is the one who assigns her children to match the lids with her containers, and the lids or containers with no partners are tossed. She is the one who goes through her closets and ruthlessly tosses things that have not been used recently. Toys that are broken or missing parts are not safe near her. She is not a collector of things. She uses what she has so that she and her husband of 25 years can do fun activities with their 4 children.  She is a do-it-now-why-wait-until-later person.

Having someone outside of your home come in to help you has several benefits. 1) You have objective eyes looking at your things to help you decide if you really need them. As I was explaining to her how I got certain things or why I thought I needed to keep something, I realized how silly I sounded. That really helped me toss/ move to the sell pile very quickly.

2) Just having someone there spurs you on and you find yourself moving a little faster. At one point, Lisa and I were sitting on the floor in the bathroom as I was going through the cabinets. All she had to do was sit there, but somehow I found myself "in the zone" and I was able to just get rid of quite a bit without any help.

3) If you have someone like my cousin, you can glean so much mommy, wife, home, family and woman tips. Just talking as we were working was so insightful and she gave me so many ideas for my own home and marriage.

4) Having someone else there give you another set of eyes for little ones while you are busy working. Addie absolutely loves "Wasa", so she was thrilled to have her here. While I was cleaning, Addie would bring a toy over to play with Lisa or to show her. When she wanted to get another toy, Lisa would have her put the first toy away before getting the next one. Lisa, being a wonderful mother to her own 4 children, is great with Addie, and Addie knows she is loved by Lisa and her family.

Lisa has come over twice now, and I cannot even begin to tell you how much it has helped so far. We have cleaned out all of my kitchen cabinets (including that mug cabinet I had mentioned once before), my two dressers, the master bathroom cabinets and drawers, my side of the master closet, and the laundry room. Still to go are the entry way closet, Addie's room (dread!), the office (double dread!), the guest bathroom, the garage (triple dread!), and the attic storage space (ugh!).

We will probably not continue until after the wedding since Lisa's services have been called upon by the bride-to-be, but it has been nice opening cabinets and not seeing "stuff". The only things in my closets, cabinets, and drawers are things that I actually use, wear, and need. And believe me, the less "stuff" you have, the simpler things are.

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