Come on, be honest. Who doesn’t have a pile or two of clutter somewhere? The “I’ll do it this weekend” sort of pile that seems to grow all by itself! Recognise your house?
Well I certainly have at least as much as the next person, what with 3 boys, a husband and a very busy job.
And of course, like most of us Mums, I am only ‘Practically Perfect’!
So when Jo from Klean Freak offered to come and help tame my clutter, I jumped at the chance. After a brief tour of my house, Jo asked me which bit I wanted her to tackle. I decided I wanted to resurrect my kitchen breakfast bar. I hadn’t seen it in a long time as it had become a dumping ground for all the boys things, some of my husbands and a reasonable amount of mine too.
Armed with a cup of tea, we waded in. In what seemed like a very short space of time, we’d set up different piles of ‘stuff’ around the kitchen.
Jo kept adding to a pile of paperwork she suggested I didn’t need to keep and although I rescued a few items, most of it did end up in the bin. While I smiled & reminisced over the boys’ school books and art work, Jo kept me on track by asking me questions like “Do you really need to keep the whole of this half empty handwriting book” and “Why are you keeping this picture with a bit of pasta stuck on it?”.
Harsh? No, not really. There’s a limit to how many of your children’s masterpieces you can store and with a huge dose of moral support from Jo, I was motivated as I saw the piles of recycling mounting & the mountain of clutter reducing!
Once we’d resurrected the breakfast bar, Jo’s attention turned to my utility room and before I knew it, we’d moved the washing machine, rearranged mops and brooms and found some calcified money! At this point I feel I must mention that I really don’t know where the 100 or so plastic bags came from, but I know where they ended up!
I even got my drill out and between us we managed to assemble a proper receptacle to hold the now much diminished store of bags!
Before I knew it we’d been working hard at de-cluttering for over 2 hours, so we allowed ourselves a quick break. While we were enjoying a latte and a cake, I happened to mention a unit that I’d been intending to ‘get around to’ . . .
. . . and before I’d had chance to put my cup down, there was stationery, photographs and greetings cards everywhere as Jo emptied its contents out. My carpet, kitchen table and even the newly cleared breakfast bar disappeared under piles of paper, bubble wrap and various other detritus.
At this point I started to panic that Jo might lose enthusiasm,
“Ooh, is that the time? Must dash!”
But like me, this girl has stamina and several hours later it was finished. Of course keeping on top of the clutter is a work in progress, but this was a great start. I had an organised unit with places for (virtually) everything. Equally importantly, my head felt so much clearer knowing that there was no longer the opportunity for important documents to lurk under the paperwork mountain!
Although it took us a solid 5 hours, without a break, I had regained a breakfast bar, had a more organised utility and storage unit and had kept the recycling men in business!
It may sound odd, but at the end of it we both commented, not only on how satisfying the results were, but how we’d actually enjoyed the process. One of my favourite moments was seeing Jo’s smiling face poking out of the utility cupboard as she was almost buried under the carrier bag mountain.
If your house is getting the better of you and you’d like to take charge again, here are some ideas which might help
5 Tips for Taming Clutter
Don’t be over ambitious. Focus on tackling one small area to begin with
Set yourself a timescale – say a maximum of two hours
Start by quickly breaking paperwork down into piles – you might be surprised how much of it you can get rid of quite easily once you actually look at it.
Take a before and after picture so you can see and enjoy your progress
Stop at your allotted time and have a little treat to reward your amazing efforts
Alternatively you could take advantage of Jo’s super-stamina and capacity to enjoy tackling other people’s mess and invite her to come & work her magic on your clutter! I can thoroughly recommend her. Call Jo at Klean Freak on 07546 106058.
If you have any decluttering tips to add to ours, please leave a comment below. I really would love to hear them. 🙂
“Now Jo, if you could just take a look at our playroom . . . “
Disclosure: I received Jo’s decluttering package for the purposes of this review. All opinions, paperwork mountains and general clutter contained in this post are, however, my family’s and mine!