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 Post subject: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:10 am 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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Location: Midlands, UK
I am a terrible slob, and always have been. When I first moved to my house 12 years ago it wasn't too bad as I didn't have so much stuff, my physical health was better, and I had regular parties so was more motivated to make the place look nice.

Over the years I've acquired a lot of stuff, particularly crafting and kitchen gear, and some of my rooms are now pretty cramped!

I've had some motivation for cleaning from unfuckyourhabitat.com recently, but I still have difficulty concentrating on finishing areas. It's complicated by me not being able to stand for long periods and having difficulty bending.

I'd also like more/better storage solutions, because although binning and recycling needs to be done I do want to keep quite a bit of my stuff, accusations of hoarding be damned.

So, this thread is for people to keep track of cleaning and tidying goals and share any good ideas!

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:15 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Location: Windmill Central
I really like the Apartment Therapy home cure they do every year. I don't follow the challenge per se,but there are a lot of great ideas for dealing with the stuff of a home. One idea I'm using is to take a tub or box and put the stuff I'm unsure about getting rid of in it. You tape it up and put a date six months from now on it. If you haven't needed any of that stuff in six months, get rid of it. We did that with all of the cables and wires my bf had laying around.

Also, I just saw this article from AT: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/crazy-i ... ner-173474


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:16 am 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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Also, I'm joining you in slob solidarity. I'm a person that becomes a slob at the hint of any stress or business and the clutter just adds to my stress. I hate it. Trying to break that cycle!


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:58 am 
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I was always a very clean person and then I got really depressed and it took me weeks to get everything back to my standard. I just took it one room at a time, moved from one area to another and then when it was tidy, I cleaned and then moved onto another area. Now I am using the same method for decorating, although lack of money is making this part last forever.

Every week I have a list of chores I tick off (tidy, laundry, paperwork, kitchen cleaned, bathroom cleaned, dust, polish, vacuum, mop, etc) but when I have kept it clean and tidied up after myself all week I normally only have to do a big clean every other week, which is my motivation for keeping on top of things.

I use this (http://www.lifeonpaperco.com/lifeonpape ... _File.html) and just added extra chores I needed done weekly.

I tried lots of things (flylady, UFYH, etc) but really, if you are going to do it then you'll do it and if you're not then you are not.


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 12:49 pm 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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Location: The Bene
This is a problem I'm hoping to tackle in my new home. My old apartment was a huge mess, and I had way too much stuff and it was all over the place. And then the mess makes it hard to clean so the cleaning falls behind too. I'm really trying to start with completely new habits in my new home, but it's challenging.

I grew up in a house with a mother who was a neat freak, yet somehow never learned the systems necessary to keep my own home neat. And as counterintuitive as it sounds, my perfectionism gets the best of me. Like, I understand the concept of everything needs to have a place and needs to go back to that place after use, but I don't seem to be able to come up with the perfect system and then I get paralyzed by indecision and then no system gets into place. I moved in the beginning of July and haven't unpacked about 80% of my stuff because I haven't figured out what system will be best for storing stuff and I'm so afraid of doing it "wrong" and it getting out of control again, and so I'm just not unpacking.

The only room that is unpacked and really in order is the kitchen (priorities!) and I'm being really vigilant about tidying it up every day as I go along. I hated my old kitchen, and that feeling was made worse by my allowing it to get gross. I love this kitchen and want it to feel like a place I enjoy being, so I'm determined to keep it up. And it's a small enough area that I feel like it's doable. I still need to get some baskets/containers for organizing stuff in there, but it's the only area that feels under control.

Small steps, small steps.

Dropscone, one thing I find helps when I don't have the energy/concentration to even clean one surface is to take one thing from the room that doesn't belong there every time I go to another room. I'm going that way anyway, and incrementally things end up where they're supposed to be. And don't forget to give yourself credit for what you have already done, even if it was just five minutes of work, rather than focusing on what still needs to be done. (I'm really bad about this myself.) Just remember that everything you've tidied is one less thing to tidy later.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:06 pm 
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Remembers When Veganism Was Cool
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Another slob here. I love having a clean and tidy house, but the effort required to get and keep it that way is often beyond me. The situation has improved in the last couple of years since my flatmate moved in, because he does actually do housework, but I still need to get my act together and do my bit. I've had some success with sites like Flylady and UFYH in the past, but like SarahJane said, they only really work for me if I'm in the right frame of mind to do it anyway.

When I do realise that it's got so disgusting I MUST do something, one thing that helps me is setting a timer and tackling the mess in short bursts. I tell myself I can do anything for twenty minutes.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:14 pm 
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Invented Vegan Meringue
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The most sure-fire way for me to keep my house looking decent is to keep a constant flow of visitors coming through. It's pretty much the only thing that works. It doesn't get ridiculous when people aren't around, but I definitely let the pet hair tumbleweeds float around for longer if no one else is going to see them.

My only real advice: If you don't have room for all your stuff to have a home, you should probably get rid of some shiitake.


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:21 pm 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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Location: Midlands, UK
Lepelaar, you sound like you could be my twin, especially in terms of mothers and perfectionism (and I prioritise the kitchen as well, although that just means it's the least disgusting room).

I've done quite a bit of washing, washing-up and putting away today, and this afternoon I sorted a table that was about 2' high in random crepe. All the recycling and rubbish from that is in the appropriate bag, craft things in a box waiting to go upstairs and I wiped it off, folded down the leaf and put it to use it as a bookshelf for some recipe and food-related books since the existing shelves in my kitchen are tiny. Small steps, yup.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:24 pm 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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Location: Midlands, UK
creep wrote:
The most sure-fire way for me to keep my house looking decent is to keep a constant flow of visitors coming through. It's pretty much the only thing that works. It doesn't get ridiculous when people aren't around, but I definitely let the pet hair tumbleweeds float around for longer if no one else is going to see them.

My only real advice: If you don't have room for all your stuff to have a home, you should probably get rid of some shiitake.


Yeah, I think I need to plan a party and invite people for a specific date, it's definitely a motivator.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:26 pm 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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I am super, super neat but I also work long days and many weekends. Some things that help me are cleaning bursts during cooking downtime, owning a roomba, listening to podcasts while I clean so it's more fun, and just straight up owning fewer things. The more I own the more I have to clean and maintain and sort and organize. And I almost never do a "big clean". I do 15 minutes a day or so of active cleaning so my house stays at like a B+ all the time and when I know guests are coming (which is super rare) I do a more thorough job and it comes up to an A- or so.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:50 pm 
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Venomous Head of Veganism
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Posts: 8592
I'm definitely neat-challenged. I haven't read any info on how to deal with it (in any serious way) but here's what I've done:
1) Get rid of like EVERYTHING. Every year or so I do a massive cleanse and just donate as much as I can. Books (even ones that I think I love), clothes, thcotckes, kitchen stuff that I don't need as much as I try to convince myself that I do because it's my livelihood blah blah blah. Well, I haven't made ravioli in a year, so goodbye ravioli press, sorry.

2) Pick one room to keep clean. For me it's the dining room. Once you figure out how to do it, it becomes a bit easier in other rooms. I mean, there's the danger of stuff piling up in a different room, but that's ok. It's more about training yourself to keep a room basically neat. And if another room gets too stuffed, see point 1.

3) Look at cleaning as if it were exercise. Well, maybe you hate exercise. But if you get in an exercise mindset, it kind of trumps the messiness mindset. You can say "I might not really get much done, but I'm going to spend 30 minutes being active by moving crepe around in this room."

4) KNEE PADS.

5) Yes to containers! I throw all my magazine into a big wicker basket and go through them every few months, ripping out any recipe I think I want to save and keeping them in a folder. Same for makeup and crepe like that. Just keep it in a cute container. When the containers get too full, see rule 1.

I'm not TOTALLY successful. My office is crazy messy. I can't even use it as an office and the bookshelves have a really weird assortment of stuff (art supplies, old photos, hairdryers and maybe some books) but all the other rooms in my house are relatively tidy, and soon I am going to apply rule 1 to the office and we should be kosher.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:52 pm 
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Venomous Head of Veganism
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PS I just thought of something that might be fun! Let's make a challenge, where we post a room, and write our goals for it, then mark the progress? I could use that kind of motivation for my office.

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"You guys are a little bit fast to identify as not-mumbles. " ~ mumbles


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:52 pm 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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dropscone wrote:
Lepelaar, you sound like you could be my twin, especially in terms of mothers and perfectionism (and I prioritise the kitchen as well, although that just means it's the least disgusting room).

I've done quite a bit of washing, washing-up and putting away today, and this afternoon I sorted a table that was about 2' high in random crepe. All the recycling and rubbish from that is in the appropriate bag, craft things in a box waiting to go upstairs and I wiped it off, folded down the leaf and put it to use it as a bookshelf for some recipe and food-related books since the existing shelves in my kitchen are tiny. Small steps, yup.


That sounds like great progress, dropscone!

RE: just owning less stuff, I did a big purge before the move, but I kind of feel like it wasn't big enough. I'll have to see what it's like living with the stuff for the next few months and maybe do another purge in half a year. This place is bigger than the last one, but I want to avoid taking that as permission to bring even more crepe into my space.

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:56 pm 
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Loves Carrots (in the biblical sense)
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I have always been untidy. The only reason I moved out of my parents house is because I just couldn't keep living with the constant reminders to tidy.

Now I have a husband and kids I know I really need to get a grip on it and sort things out. I was making quite a lot of progress by my mum taking out the baby once a week so I could really get going but if our routine changes I just let everything slide and I get so cross with myself but yet I still lack the motivation to keep up.

I have too much stuff, it's cluttered and all my stuff is old and tired so there is no love for it which I think is a part of the problem.

I've tried fly lady and ufyh but no lasting improvement. It's the same problem as I have with my weight- I hate the problem, I hate the repercussions but yet I still do nothing about it. I don't want to keep looking back and being so annoyed at myself!


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:58 pm 
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Dying from Nooch Lung
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IsaChandra wrote:

5) Yes to containers! I throw all my magazine into a big wicker basket and go through them every few months, ripping out any recipe I think I want to save and keeping them in a folder. Same for makeup and crepe like that. Just keep it in a cute container. When the containers get too full, see rule 1.



I love the idea of containers, but I seem to have trouble putting this idea into practice. By that I mean I buy containers but for some reason, they always end up being the wrong containers (just the wrong size/shape for what I want to put in there, or impractical in some other way). Then the containers that I've bought to help organize end up becoming part of the clutter. I've yet to get the hang of this, but I'm not giving up yet.

IsaChandra wrote:
PS I just thought of something that might be fun! Let's make a challenge, where we post a room, and write our goals for it, then mark the progress? I could use that kind of motivation for my office.


I love this idea!

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Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:02 pm 
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Venomous Head of Veganism
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Haha, the dreaded Container-Hoarding-Epidemic-Reversal. C.H.E.R.? Keep trying, it works if you work it.

If others love the idea of a tidy room challenge, let's do it!

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"You guys are a little bit fast to identify as not-mumbles. " ~ mumbles


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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:20 pm 
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I'm pretty tidy, but I'm finding that in my new place, I just don't have places for everything yet! I end up with clutter on my table and desk and counters, because I don't have a place for things like my cell phone chargers, mail, etc. I hate having to constantly clear off all my surfaces!

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:20 pm 
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Invented Vegan Meringue
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I need this thread so hard. I've been trying to self motivate myself with Isa's rule #1 but its slow going. SO MUCH stuff. just how I accululate it all, I don't even know.

I absolutely need a challenge!

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:28 pm 
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Dying from Nooch Lung

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Location: Ireland
I'm down with a tidy room challenge! My house is an unbelievable mess. I started a clear-out on my time off but then my aunt died. Now because of the amount of time I have to spend with my cousins I don't even have time to do the basics at present which totally isn't going to help with my slobbish behaviour.

To top it all off my other aunt is probably going to have to move in with me in the next few days to escape an abusive relationship and the spare rooms are basically full of junk. Will post a photo in a short while.

Off to steam the blinds for the back bedroom now and get some of the rubbish out of there.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:30 pm 
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Mispronounces Daiya

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The two best tips I have ever gotten for keeping the home clean with less time and effort ( I'm still not there yet ) are:

1. Keep cleaning implements ( sponges, rags, etc ) where you make the mess.
2. Cultivate the habit of cleaning where you go.

It helps me if I look at the clock before and after I begin each job. It reduces the "NOT THAT!" boogey man response in my head. "Dishes after dinner? 6 mintuest! Pffft! Lets do it".

When I do these things I am amazed at how little time I spend, how free I feel with nothing hanging over my head and I am actually suprised with how much I enjoy having things clean.

Again, I am not perfectly there yet, but these things really help.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:32 pm 
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Queen Bitch of Self-Righteous Veganville
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Brian and I are both natural slobs, but like Isa i've found some tricks that work well for me to kind of balance it out. Our new house actually has plenty of storage (including a full basement pantry) so we don't have a clutter problem, but I still need to keep it from stinking of cats and everything gets covered in hair and it can get awful in a day or two if I don't check myself.

1. I have a bare minimum daily list of chores, like the only way I get out of them is if I have the flu or cramps so bad I can't even stay upright. Those are: litter box, load dishwasher, wipe off kitchen counter, make bed and often vacuuming the downstairs because Harley sheds a LOT, especially when summer starts up.

2. My basic goal is, if someone called and said they were coming over in ten minutes, would I be able to clean things up enough to look presentable? Most days, just doing the above things makes than a 'yes' answer, your mileage may vary. But that way if I haven't cleaned my bathroom in awhile I could run in and wipe off the sink and swish a brush in a toilet, fold up my lap blanket in the living room, and my house is pretty presentable.

3. Have a laundry day instead of waiting for all of your clothes to be dirty. We do laundry on Sunday, no matter what. During the week I will wash towels or sheets as needed because I don't care if those get wrinkled from sitting in the dryer for two days. Also as soon as we moved in, I bought four laundry baskets so I can never want for an empty one either in the basement next to the dryer, or upstairs in our room. I used to be really bad about having piles of clothes on the floor and now I can't stand the idea.

4. Get some kind of organizers! I can't care enough to keep things perfectly sorted, but some simple drawer dividers keep things from being a total jumbled mess. I have this one:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026S ... UTF8&psc=1 (it was cheaper when I bought it)

Which is in my snack drawer, because I get all of those tiny things from Vegan Cuts, I also keep loose onions and sweet potatoes in there. And then this one:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026S ... UTF8&psc=1

Which keeps my junk drawer from being a junk pool of mess. Other than that, I went to the dollar store and got some baskets for my pantry and under the sink cleaning stuff and one of those tiered step things, I really hate it when you try to grab a bottle of vanilla or a can and you knock shiitake over. My makeup drawer is just a tetris puzzle of various containers i've collected over the years, one I filled with rice so I can jam pencil-y things into it and they stand up and it's easier to find, here's a crappy instagram photo:

Image

I also try to buy decent sized baskets whenever I find them for things like shoes and dog toys.

5. Set time limits for cleaning if you're not feeling it. If you have a really long song in your music collection that's not slow or sad, use that! You can get a lot of cleaning done in the eight minutes it takes to listen to Master of Puppets. Or if you're making something in the oven but don't have to clean up a cooking mess, clean until your food is done, then you can eat and watch tv and sit on your asparagus for the rest of the night. That's what I do when i'm not feeling well or just don't forking wanna, then I can justify laying down with my cats or whatever and doing the bigger stuff the next day.

I'm definitely not neat, but if I let things get too far out of control it depresses me and sometimes i'll get overwhelmed by how much needs to be done, which makes me not want to do it, which on the wrong day can make me cry. So that's why I don't ever want to see clothes on the floor or a sink full of dishes or a smelly litter box.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:32 pm 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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IsaChandra wrote:
Haha, the dreaded Container-Hoarding-Epidemic-Reversal. C.H.E.R.? Keep trying, it works if you work it.

If others love the idea of a tidy room challenge, let's do it!


I'm in. Pick a room, mine all need work.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:32 pm 
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I really like Fly Lady. http://www.flylady.net/

Getting started: http://www.flylady.net/d/getting-starte ... babysteps/

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:34 pm 
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This thread inspired me to do some cleaning today. I got some laundry done, dusted a couple of surfaces, hoovered, and mopped the kitchen floor. Woot!

I'm not filthy, just generally untidy. For example, I think I've moved twice with the same laundry pile in the past 4 years. But we're getting to the bottom of that pile, and once we do that, we're gonna go through everything and get rid of anything we no longer wear. (Obvs we're not gonna donate dirty clothes, hence the washing first.)

Part of our problem is that we both like and buy a lot of books, and we're really bad about getting rid of them. I might have to bite the bullet and donate some stuff to the library. I also keep stuff out of sentiment, so I have storage boxes full of stuff that I don't even look at. I know I should chuck it, but I can't seem to bring myself to do it.

I like the challenge idea. It might spur me to sort out my bookshelves after a year and a half.

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 Post subject: Re: the clean/tidy home support thread
PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 2:52 pm 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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one thing that helps me keep our home clutter-free is letting go of 5 things each and every day. the items i choose to let go of go to 1 of 3 places: recycling, box of goodies donation, the trash.

these 5 items don't have to be anything big. they're usually something small like: a beer cap that's still sitting around, twisty ties that are piling up in the junk drawer, a magazine i've already read, dead batteries, toys the animals aren't interested in any longer, things i haven't used in forever (my motto is "when in doubt, toss it out!"), etc.

when i feel like i'm running low on things in the common areas i'll head up to the attic and pull down a box or two and leave them in my living room for a bit so i can go through those each day for 5 things, or go under the house or through my car and find stuff.

it sounds like a lot, but it really isn't and i love thinking about/finding 5 things to let go of!


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