Day 1 - Forty Bags Challenge

Day One of 40 Bags in 40 Days is complete!! I woke up this morning excited to start my first day of decluttering. The state of my hutch has been driving me crazy but I didn’t want to jump the gun and declutter it before this challenge started so it felt good to jump in with both feet today.  I started out by emptying everything but the books out of the hutch, then I wiped it down with a damp cloth. I sorted through the books and took out a stack of them to donate to the local Value Village. All the other stuff that had been in there got dumped on my bed so that I could sort through it more easily.

You know what I found the hardest? Putting things away with intention - not just changing them places. Normally, when I would de-clutter an area, I would just move all the crap from one place to an other. So instead of being in my hutch, it would be on my dresser. Instead of being on my dresser it would go into the junk drawer. Today, after I sorted through everything and filled my “bag” (there was a lot of paper goods, so I ended up filling the recycling bin more than anything else) I started to put away the rest of the stuff and I was so tempted to just stack it somewhere. But I didn’t. And it felt good. When the project was complete, I didn’t have a pile of crap in a different place to deal with. It was just... clean. Hooray! So once more, here is the before picture:

and here is the after picture:

Not too shabby, eh?

I think what I’m going to find hard about this project is staying focused on the one space for that day and not “squirreling”. Have you seen the movie “Up!”? Remember how the dogs would be talking or doing something and then all of a sudden they would say “Squirrel!” and get totally distracted? That’s usually how I am when I tidy up. I start in one area and then slowly just drift from space to space and by the end of the day I’m totally exhausted and haven’t actually completely cleaned any one area. This project will help me stay on the one area until it’s done and it will force me to pace myself and not totally exhaust myself in one week trying to get everything done.

The other nice thing about this is that since it’s only a small project each day, it’s completely possible to do it with a toddler running around. And the “big one’s” on my list will just be reserved for Saturdays so that my husband will be around to either occupy the kids, or help me out. See? Win-win!

And here is a bonus cleaning tip that has absolutely nothing to do with the post above. The range hood above my oven is old and disgusting. I’ve tried cleaning it with several different things and nothing seems to work. I tried a magic eraser and it just shredded. Frustrating. Anyhow, I found a tip the other day that said to use “Spray and Wash” laundry stain remover. I just sprayed it on, left it there for a few minutes and wiped it off. Magic. Seriously. Go try it. You’ll thank me.


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