Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday Q & A -- spring (I mean FALL) cleaning

A series of organization questions from a reader:

I LOVE both Elle's and Max's new rooms! Both of their rooms look so stylish, organized and clean! {see Elle's here, and Max's here}

Yeah, they may look clean, but that's just because I don't generally take pictures of their closets...or the days when they leave for school and it looks like a hurricane hit.  Here's Max's closet.
Yeah, clean right?

Do all your kids have their own bathrooms? Do you update/decorate their bathrooms as well?

The three little girls share this jack-and-jill:
...and Elle and Max have their own.  I don't pay much attention to them (that one has looked the same almost since we moved into this house ten years ago).  Max's is in that link up there at the top for his bedroom and we painted Elle's when we re-did her room, but there's not much in it.

How often do you update your kid's rooms? How often do you update the other rooms in your house?

I don't have a routine for this.  Sometimes I just get this little "nesting" instinct where I just need to switch things up and I get in the "mode" for a little while.  Then it will sit untouched for years.  This happened recently with our bedroom.

It's funny because the master bedroom is always the very last thing on my mind.

Yes, we are moving (when we can actually pull ourselves out of the molasses-ly slow part we're in right now), but we finally hit a wall with enough walking into this dark-brown cave-like bathroom:

We figured changing it up may make it a better re-sale option as well.

So those two rooms changed into this:

...oh shoot, I just realized I don't have a picture of the bedroom...I'll take one and post it soon...

And this:
Now I need help figuring out what to do to decorate to pull us through til we move, but I LOVE this Dunn Edwards "Foggy Day" and another gray we used for our bedroom that I'm sure I'll remember the name of when I post the picture...

How do you keep down on clutter? Do you have an annual garage sale? Or do you regularly take clothes and toys to some place like Salvation Army to donate?

Well, about when our clothes start to look like this:

...we get busy and clean out all the closets to assess what in the world we need to purchase at some Old Navy sale that may be coming up.  I used to do garage sales with the old stuff back in the early days but now I just take all the stuff we don't need any more to my sisters at Bear Lake in the summers...or to my friends with little girls.

Each season I take a few hours with each child to thoroughly go through everything in their closets and drawers. We figure out what they have grown out of, what is roomy enough that it may still fit them next year, what we want to trash because it's been worn to the ground through three or four girls, or what we want to give away.

Because of our big "organize yourself" mumbo jumbo FHE (more on that later) we made some serious efforts in the organization front recently.

Here's Grace's progression:

Trying on hand-me-downs from Elle:

Finished product:

Here are the little girls in a clean-out state:

Finished product:

I know someone will ask about that chart on the dresser so here it is:
(Lu needs structure.)

The stairs in the midst of the clean-out:

Elle's room post-clean-out:

The yard post clean-out :)

Max's room isn't here for a reason:  We haven't finished that one yet...and we started over a month some work to do...

As one of the kids' Saturday jobs (at the end of this post) they have to clean out and organize their drawers each week so they stay ok organized, but they don't get rid of things like I do.

Is it hard for some of your kids to give up certain things? Do you keep a few toys for each child from their childhood for when they are older?

I don't think my kids care as much as I do.  There are certain things I can't bear to give up.  So, see those bins in the top of Elle's closet below?
They are Max and Elle's keepsakes.  So, in addition to those file boxes I explained back here, they each have one box with stuff I can't bear to give up (team jerseys, student council shirts, special blankets, first baby clothes, their "initial necklaces" they used to always wear (see them back here), etc.

Some day when they go off to college I will make them a patchwork quilt made with squares of each of the special things I've kept.  (But let's keep that on the down-low cause I want to surprise, forget you read that ok?)

Is everything that each child owns all in their bedroom? Or do they have like winter clothes or things in storage/storage boxes somewhere?

Elle and Grace have pretty big closets (so grateful) so we rotate stuff and keep what we want to keep in boxes or bags in those ones.  Want to see a messy closet?  Here's a good one for you:

But there is a rhyme and reason to all that stuff...those bags up top are all the kids' ski gear, straight ahead is all the summer gear waiting for next summer, those boxes on the left are "waiting" clothes for girls to grow into (hand-me-downs):

...those clear boxes on the right are their school file boxes (explained back here).
That baby lotion, powder and baby mobile up there on the shelf on the right are just there cause I can't bear to get rid of them. (IWAN).

I'm all about updating homes/rooms, de-cluttering and living a simple life. Less is more.



  1. great post. It is always fun to see inside other people closets!

  2. oooh this was sooo fun :)
    I love your furniture in your room, don't forget to post the pic ;)
    Do you have a time frame for getting into your new house??

    yeah for clear outs! I love it!

  3. Thanks for sharing your world. It is really refreshing to see a little "behind the scenes". Thanks for being real; I love reading your blog for that reason!

  4. I have a couple questions

    -About how many questions do you get every week?

    -How do you organize all the questions you get? Do you categorize them?

    -Do people ever recognize you or your family around town? Do your kids feel a little famous?

    Thank You!

  5. I admire your decorating style. Follow up questions! I've noticed in pictures in the past that you have some unique and often large house plants (one in a blue-ish room off your dining area and this one in Grace's room) Where/how did you make/get those?

  6. Thanks for answering my organization and cleaning questions ;)


Related Posts with Thumbnails