Saturday, March 8, 2008

A Few Tips for An Uncluttered Life

I figured if I boast that I live an uncluttered life, I probably should share a tip or two.

1) Get rid of clutter. My brain does not seem to work if there is a lot of "stuff" lying around. I could be writing the most important document, watching the most amazing show, or listening to the most hilarious story my children are telling - but.... my mind will wander over the to counter where paper litters the island or where toys need to be picked up. It is probably not normal.

However, it is necessary.

I hear people complain all the time about the state of their homes. How they are such a mess and they can never get "caught up". Some people don't care. Hats off to them - they don't sweat the small stuff. But I think that an organized home reflects not only the state of our home, but also the state of the person behind the home (Have I stepped on anyone's toes yet?)

Some easy ways to "Get Rid of the Clutter".....

a. When the mail comes, don't just set it down. Sort through the throw away and junk mail and deposit it promptly in the recycle bin. I do this sometimes when I am still outside and I can easily throw it away in the Big Purple Recycle Bin. Bills can be put in your in basket (everyone has one of those in their office area, right?!) or in any TRAY that is marked for important priority viewing.
Letters, cards, and other informal matter can be read (envelope discarded in trash) and posted on the fridge, put in that special box, or also discarded after read. I will read thank you notes and then toss them. I don't need a constant reminder that someone is thanking me. Once read is enough for me. The message has penetrated my heart where it will live forever.

b. Make sure all dishes are done at the end of the day. Start the dishwasher for cheaper rates during the night and unload in the morning (or give the job to one of the kiddos). I tend to hand wash all my pot and pans, etc.. after dinner and let them air dry overnight. In the morning, during the percolating of the coffee, I put these items away so the kitchen sink is clean.

c. Make one fell swoop of picking up items in the late afternoon, early evening, for an uncluttered house before bed. It's nice to wake up to a clean house. I start in one room and begin picking up items to be put in other rooms. Because my house is a tri-level, I will store things on the staircase so I don't make many trips up and down. This is not the time to dust or vacuum. Merely picking up stray items will make a huge difference in the appearance of the home.

d. Lastly, find a spot in your home to call your own. It could be the living room chair where the sunlight comes in and brightens the room. Maybe it's your bedroom where privacy abounds and you can reflect and think about whatever crosses your mind. Perhaps it's outside in your backyard where the fresh air, flowers and trees are calming to your spirit. Where ever this place is, take time to thank God for all the provisions He's given. Everything you have picked up, washed, or put away was given by our Great Provider. Thank Him not only for the stuff that clutters our home, but for the 4 walls that surround it.

I hope your home is a dwelling place that you and your family enjoy together!

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