You know that thing where your mother-in-law calls and says she is on her way. She is about 15 minutes away. You put the phone down and look around you at the mess overwhelming. And you jump into action, fitting in 3 days worth of cleaning in 14 minutes 50 seconds, with 10 seconds to left to catch your breath by the front door before opening it and greeting her in your best and most casual, “Oh, Hey!”
There is something about the announcement of a visitor to our homes that gives us the long-sought for motivation to clean like we get paid to clean. And I suppose there is some sort of payment exchanged. You know the kind of payment where the visitor looks around your home and says something nice. You know when they “pay you a compliment” on your homemaking prowess. And you blush, and look around like, “oh, this old thing.” Like it looks like this everyday. The funny thing we forget in all the cleaning-for-company madness is that the visitor is likely not there to check out our home, evaluate our homemaking skills, and give us a grade based on their experience while in our homes. And still we do the 15 minute mad dash.
Well, this whole scenario (on steroids!) happened for us a couple of weeks ago because my husband informed me that an appraiser was scheduled to come by the house to appraise it for our refinance.
Consider me motivated!
Because in this case, it actually DOES matter how my house looks because this visitor is actually evaluating our home. No, she wasn’t going to be conducting a white-glove inspection, but she was going to get a general lay of the land and look at how well our home has been maintained (and upgraded) in the nine years we have lived here.
So, I needed to make a good impression!
The night before she arrived, I stayed up extra late and worked on the crazy clutter mess that is my husband’s office. You know the one that is my action project for our current Hope for Homemakers series: Step by Step Decluttering. Let’s just say, I took a bunch of steps that night!
Here’s what I got done and (even better) here’s what I have maintained since.
I took everything out of the extra closet, purged, re categorized, and put it back in an orderly manner.
I call this my surprise closet with the girls. It is where I store all the fun stuff I don’t let them play with all the time. You know, puzzles, games, craft stuff, and paint. But it also holds some long-term homemaking storage items, like vases and stuff.
It is incredibly hard to take pictures of it because it is truly a tiny space, but it looks SO much better than it did the last time I showed you this room! Don’t you agree?! I couldn’t even open the door fully before. And the Stop sign was a pretty good suggestion, right?
I hung up an organizer
(myself, with a drill!) for my husband’s business mail -a sort of inbox/outbox situation. I purchased this a while back from one of my favorite daily deal sites and it just sat in the room, not being useful for a while. Kind of the story of the life of almost every item in this room. My husband and I had discussed where it was going to go, but that was as far as both of us had gotten. We do this quite often. You know, plan and rest. Plan and rest.
Since that lady was coming to tell us how much our house was worth, I decided it was time for this to go up on the wall! And it looks pretty cute, right?
I made a decision about the Pack N’ Play
We have in the room currently the last vestige of our 6 week camp out session in this room after our latest little one was born, his Pack N’ Play. With babies past, we have used this space as the place to change diapers and very rarely use the Pack N’ Play for naps while at home. We only use it when we go somewhere out-of-town. But I have decided we are going to actually use this Pack N’ Play for the purpose it was intended!
I know shocking! I am going to bring it out into the living area of the house and let little man hang out in there while I am working with the girls on projects and other fun things.
This may not seem like a significant step in the Decluttering Step by Step process, but I assure you. This frees up a lot of space in this room that is necessary for other things to be done in here. I want the room to feel more like an office for my husband and less like a catch-all for our family junk. So, out, out, out it goes!
And yes, this would be an example of my and my husband’s tendency to plan and rest, plan and rest. But hey, this is a step-by-step process, right?
Next up in my decluttering project is the area around my husband’s desk, the multitude of cords (oh, the cords) and extraneous electronic items! I think this is where we will definitely start to make some progress in getting the office the way we want it to be.
Are you still working on a major decluttering project in your home? I would love to hear about it! And I would love to see it! Leave a comment below letting me know about it or request to join our Hope for Homemakers Facebook group and share pictures there!