The life and times of a home schooling mom of se7en + 1.

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A Truth About Blogging…

February 10th, 2010 · 22 Comments

The truth about blogging is that you are really looking at a snapshot of folks lives. Just the bits and pieces that we want folks to see… Have a look our New Year Post:


This was the reality: Laundry to be folded, dishes from a huge breakfast with friends, a tired New Year Tree… but we had a good time!!! And the chores got done and everyone got to bed ready for another day of action…


And here is the same spot on Apartment Therapy’s The Kitchn: Can you spot the difference!!!


Now if you follow our blog you will know I am all about decluttering and decluttering and decluttering. I have this fifteen minute thing going. Seriously everyday while the kids clean their teeth in the morning I sort out a little spot.

A year ago I was able to walk around our house and gather up fifty things to get rid of in a flash but it is getting harder and harder to find stuff!!! The fact is that it has to end: because the more you declutter the more of a discerning shopper you become, and eventually really not a shopper at all. Nobody wants to keep buying something just to put into the “to-donate” pile. Finally we are getting to a place where we are fitting into our space. Consistency works, just like mental math every morning eventually pays off, well so does decluttering. Last year we had a junk drawer in every room but now we just have one… and this is it!!!


But just like all families have that one strange relative that you have to accommodate or ignore, it appears that everyone has a dumping zone and since I posted my To Do list on Saturday I have discovered that most folk have a dumping room, let alone a spot!!! What a relief it isn’t just us!!!

How many times have I followed the Se7en Steps to Decluttering with this room: Totally emptied it out, sorted, discarded, donated and only packed what we wanted in there back, everything in its own place. Only to discover that it looks like a bomb went off two days later. I can’t tackle it that way now with a small baby I have to figure out another way to tackle it!!!


Now, just like that strange relative, I can ignore this room or accommodate it. This is our dumping ground and I accept that every family needs one!!! Yet it still has to serve a purpose. So I have begun: fifteen minutes a day, while the kids clean their teeth. I can’t even say I am doing a shelf a day because today I just did a folder, but eventually it will have to make a difference.

So supposing you have a strange relative in your home – a dump zone of note. Let me know in the comments how you are tackling it.

This Post was hammered out as part of The Thirty Minute Mom’s Challenge at Steady Mom. The photographs were taken from our flickr pool, so didn’t need load up time.

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Tags: Home Truths · Stuff About Us...

22 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Stina // Feb 10, 2010 at 5:14 am

    Awesome! I feel exactly the same way. I will work for a week straight and get my entire house clean from top to bottom only to have it be a disaster again a few days later. Cleaning is a necessary evil, isn’t it? lol. It does teach us a lot, though (this is me trying to give it a silver lining). It humbles us, forces us to organize a bit better, bonds us when we do it with family or friends, and gives us a sense of accomplishment.

    Now I think I might be able to tackle my living room. Good motivator. 🙂

  • 2 thesleepyknitter // Feb 10, 2010 at 5:30 am

    Basically, I do the same thing you do: tackle one small decluttering project a day. The hardest thing for me by far is paper — how on earth do three people wind up with so much paper of different kinds to be sorted or tossed?

  • 3 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Hi S, I know what you mean about the vicious circle of cleaning. And as for the deep under the surface layer stuff. I realized a while back that it doesn’t stay sorted either. All the big organizers talk about maintenance… Quite sickening to know that once you have done each room in the house you just have to keep going round again and again… I would so much rather be blogging!!! Good luck with your living room!!!

  • 4 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 8:52 am

    Hi SK, I love doing a massive clear out but I am very rarely free to do that and have settled for little bites – it works better in the long run… snacks are so much easier to digest than feasts!!! As for paper their is only one way: Totally and utterly ruthless, I am recycling bags of it out of our hideous room – how did I ever let it into the house. The shocker is that I printed out so much of it… I should write a paper post!!! Have a great day!!!

  • 5 Christine // Feb 10, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Ah, if only my life was snapshots!

  • 6 Jenni @ My Web of Life // Feb 10, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    I love the honesty of this post! Although I have to say that your ‘reality’ picture is still absolutely beautiful and light-years beyond my reality picture (I LOVE the green on your walls, by the way!)
    My dumping spot is our dining room. We live in an old victorian so this room is very formal and rarely used. It is currently stacked with my Christmas decorations that I haven’t had the energy to put away yet.
    I have to admit that I am completely overwhelmed by this room for the exact reason you mentioned- it is messy 2 days after being cleaned. What’s up with that???

  • 7 Jennifer // Feb 10, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    Great post! I’ve been enjoying your blog since finding it through SteadyMom’s 30minute blog challenge. I love your photos of the reality and the green color of your kitchen is beautiful! I just went on a organization binge yesterday but I agree it’s so much easier to do it 15 minutes at a time.

  • 8 Granny Ant // Feb 10, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    Forget the clutter it will disappear in time. But watch pilot #8 who is preparing for take off. He looks just about ready to fly off on a L O N G journey.

  • 9 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    Hi J, Thanks for stopping by!!! I love a huge organizing binge… trouble is nine other people need regular meals and sleep and suchlike!!! So fifteen minutes at a time it is… For the good of us all!!! Have a great day!!!

  • 10 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    Hay C, See… even a one liner and chuckling away!!!

  • 11 Annie @ SisterWisdom // Feb 10, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    Okay, maybe I’m stupid, but this post was a revelation for me: decluttering 15 mintues at a time! WOW. That’s actually possible! I have several major messy zones that are just eating at me and with 3 kids under 3, claiming a block of 2+ hours to make headway just isn’t happening. I was beginning to despair: but lo & behold, the answer! here! little by little. so simple. like that verse – line upon line, precept upon precept. thx for sharing this!

  • 12 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 10:30 pm

    Hay Jenni, What is that two day later thing!!! Wish I knew myself but it is pretty disheartening isn’t it!!! On the other hand because our dumping zone is limited to one room that isn’t in our main living area it is survivable. But only just!!! Glad you like our kitchen, we do too!!! Good luck with your Christmas closure!!! Have a great day!!!

  • 13 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    Hay Granny Ant!!! We may disappear under it all!!! Just look at #8 isn’t he divine!!! You take care!!!

  • 14 se7en // Feb 10, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    Hay A, Trust me it eventually works… sometimes when it gets intense I will do fifteen minutes twice a day. But mostly it is just fifteen minutes in the morning. When I started out I would try and fill a bag with a set number of donatables… ten or twenty things. You would be amazed at how much stuff we had just lying around that we didn’t need or love! Don’t be alarmed it can be done… and that focus got me started in the places that needed the most decluttering. I began by doing just a drawer at a time, but now I can do a bigger area in fifteen minutes. Hope it works for you!!! Have a great day!!!

  • 15 jen@odbt // Feb 11, 2010 at 3:13 am

    I feel like I have piles of stuff everywhere. My dumping room is our dining room to my husband’s dismay. It usually gets bad right before a holiday or hosting an event in the house then it gets cleared off until the next event. I like the idea of taking 15 minutes…not as overwhelming as trying to do it all at once. Can’t wait to explore more of your blog.

  • 16 katherinemarie // Feb 11, 2010 at 3:15 am

    In your apt thearpy kitchen photos: I thought NUMBER 1 was the NUMBER 2. Your number 1 looks so fresh and beautiful and fun… and the number 2 is clean and spiffy but lacks the character of your family. So declutter if you must, but I’m all for your real life which is pretty darn spectacular!

    AND IS that as messy as your kitchen really gets??? You guys gotta come visit us… family of four kids beats family of eight kids in the mess department! :):)

  • 17 Susan // Feb 11, 2010 at 5:51 am

    I have a wardrobe in my bedroom that is a dump zone. Something about the way the shelves are designed make this huge piece of furniture only marginally useful. I’m starting to think about donating It- instead of constantly decluttering it’s insides.

  • 18 se7en // Feb 11, 2010 at 8:17 am

    Hi Jen, I dare say it is that clearing off that is a bit of a nightmare to sort out later… Clear off, stuff in, clear off, stuff in, …. can’t find anything and have no desire to ever sort through it!!! Then you have to sort back through time and how far down the pile it is occording to when it was cleared off – nightmare!!! I so understand!!! You have a good week!!!

  • 19 se7en // Feb 11, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    Hay KM, That is funny!!! That is our mess!!! And the stress – Oh my beating heart!!! Anyway I have been doing all the lovely things on my To Do list and important things like trips to the beach… and “the lab” looks just the same as ever!!! Your sleepy baby looks lovely, that must have been so much fun!!! Have a great day!!!

  • 20 se7en // Feb 11, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    Hay S, Now there is a brilliant solution, I wonder if you can lop off a whole room!!! Maybe I could shut the door for a hundred years – sleeping beauty style… I am sure in the olden days when people lived in houses with one thousand rooms they must have done some serious “shutting of the door and moving on”… Have a good week!!!

  • 21 Lillian // Feb 16, 2010 at 4:53 pm

    1. You were on Apartment Therapy??? So exciting!!!
    2. Our dumping ground is our bookshelves lately. I’m starting this 40 Bags in 40 Days for Lent and I CAN’T WAIT!!

  • 22 se7en // Feb 16, 2010 at 10:50 pm

    Hi L, 1. We were, not once – but twice… it wasn’t a complete fluke!!! and 2. I am impressed with your project – you go girl!!! 3. I just cannot believe your snow… the depth!!! The height!!! Awesome!!! Have a good day!!!

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