Stuff & More Stuff

Let's be forthright, most Americans have too much stuff.  It's not a 1% problem, the 99% have this issue too.  The quality of the stuff might differ from class to class but overall, we as a nation, are a people with more stuff than we need most of the time.  Before we even come into this world, we are by tradition, "showered" with stuff.  When we celebrate that day again in a year; more stuff.  When we marry, again we are "showered" with more stuff.  By the time a year rolls around, stuff has come and gone out of our lives many times over thanks to holidays, special occasions, and unplanned shopping trips. 

Chicken "Stuff"
Think about the massive rental storage buildings that are full to capacity.  The yard with one or even two sheds and a garage too packed to park a car.  Some of us have too much stuff and it impedes upon a normal lifestyle while others have "needful" stuff that might be necessary for work or household upkeep.  However, how many times have you gone to the store and bought that "thing" that you needed because you didn't know where it was in the house or that you even had it at all?  Right now, this is a bit of my life.  I have too much stuff in my home.  To be fair, I share this stuff with 4 other people, 2 dogs, 3 cats, and a bevy of chickens.  Each of the residents of my home has their own stuff, yes, even the chickens.  The little feathered friends need at least a 25 square foot space for their stuff and yet, who wants to give that amount of space to a chicken for their personal items?  Well, I don't!  If a chicken collects enough stuff to fit in that space, can you imagine what amount of space is needed for a teenage girl or even a grown man with an acre yard to maintain?

I wrote in my last post that I am in the process of trying to control the clutter and I would like to do it with style.  I don't want to have a room of cardboard boxes with a collection of items that I won't use or that I am saving til later.  I don't want my children to have to come behind me one day and clean up that mess for me.  I certainly don't want to burden them with items that they may think are sentimental because I kept them therefore causing them to feel the need to keep them too.  A never-ending clutter story.

Drool Worthy Garage Organization by Flow Wall  = Big $$
The one thing that I have found through this process is that organization, real and functional organization, costs money.  Sure, one could collect used cardboard boxes from the liquor store and stack them neatly for the function but if any sort of cohesiveness is to be had, money has to be spent for most people.  Even making the boxes look nice and neatly coordinated would take covering them in paint or paper.  Shelves would need to be built or bought and even if you salvaged old pallets, the nails, and the rest of the tools and supplies, it is likely at some point you will need to make a trip to Home Depot or Ace to finish the project in a timely manner.  

Favorite Purses on Display
Thrift Store Candle Holders for Hooks
I recently organized my closet using thrift store items and a can of spray paint to tie it all together but it still had purchases that needed to be made if I ever wanted to finish the project.  To do it all for free would have taken at least a year of daily wanderings through thrift stores,
 Craigslist and Freecycle.  

Purses on Baby Hangers

Shoes Neatly Organized
I have come to the realization that if I want any of my organized stuff to be neat, coordinated, and functional (so I don't need to run to the store to buy another), I must create a budget for each of the areas and use it for even the smallest amount of stuff.  Shelves are my first priority to get the stuff off the floor and I plan to KEEP, DONATE, & TOSS my way to a more organized space.  REAL SIMPLE has some great tips to follow for basement organization.  I hope that once I start getting rid of unused and unloved items, I won't need as much organizational stuff to hold my stuff. 
More Shoes in Mudroom


Clutter Conundrum

No pretty pictures, no tutorials just checking in.  I'm in a clean and purge mode this year.  Have I done anything that is creative?  Yes, but it is out of necessity and on the fly.  I've created in rushes leaving a whirlwind of shredded paper, fabric, and other crafty accoutrements behind a giant steel door that separates the living part of my house from the creative part still dubbed, "The Attic Space" or "Future Master Bedroom".  It's a shameful mess and a complete waste of space which I am trying to control.  But while cleaning one room, I mess up others and the cycle never ends.  Sometimes I wish all of the mess would spontaneously combust (not really) OR just Martha Stewart itself into a nice & neat, color coordinated, arrangement that works for my mind.  

Ugly but Functional

I can't remember what the rule is, you know the one?

If you are faced with a series of problems, start with the hardest task first.  Or...is it, start with the easiest first?  Either way, I am still sitting amongst the clutter trying to organize, purge, and donate my way into some sort of usable space.  

I decided to work my way from the bottom up.  That means the garage/basement then up to the 2nd Floor for the studio.  One day I will have a studio.  Right now, I just need to find the dang drill!  Can you believe I just wanted this junk off the floor so bad that I hung it all on an unpainted wall?  Anyone who knows me, knows how difficult it was to resist just slapping any color up there but in all fairness, I was working with my husband and he doesn't have the patience to wait for paint to dry.  Since he was doing the heavy lifting, I had to comply.  

I am going to continue on my journey of Organizing my Life in 2012.  Meanwhile, bear with me and realize that when I do create that studio, good things will come. 

.................help me................