Friday, January 2, 2009


"Out of clutter, find simplicity."
- Albert Einstein

Did you know that January is National Get Organized Month?

Being organized and clutter free means you have more time, more space and more energy for family, friends, and the things you want to do most in life.

I think of myself as an organized person but I can always improve.

My biggest fault is collecting things. I collect pottery, clocks, mugs, and books. The past several years, I have downsized a lot and given many items away to friends, family, or charity.

It is so easy to keep something by telling yourself, "I might use it someday!" I read somewhere that we use 20% of our stuff 80% of the time. This leaves a lot of things not used very often and probably cluttering up our homes and our lives.

Since it is the beginning of a new year, I am trying to go through closets, drawers, cabinets, etc. I have always heard if you have not worn it in a year, get rid of it. That is what I am doing.

Getting started is the hardest part for me. Just preparing myself to get RID of things I have not used in years. Once I have accomplished this task, it is a very freeing feeling.

Some ways to know if you have to much clutter:

You have to move a pile off a chair to have a seat.
You own scissors, but can never find them.
You have several years issues of several magazines.
You have cards and letters from twenty years ago.
You still have your high school prom dress.

Do you have too much clutter in your life or home or are you a very organized person?

Are you hanging onto stuff you will never use or don't need?

Ask yourself, "Why am I keeping that?"

Time to confess. Are you a "clutterbug" or a "neatfreak"?


Some Kinda Wonderful said...

I am a clutterbug AND a neatfreak. I take it by turns. Mostly I have a hard time letting go of fabric. "I might use it one day to make a quilt or grocery bags or SOMETHING.
I did not know that Jan. was National Get Organized month. Interesting... is that because a new year gets you more in the mood to "begin anew"? I wonder...

Sylvia K said...

Ah, I recognized them all! One of the good things that happened when my son moved me to Seattle was that his house was not THAT big and although I have the downstairs to myself, there wasn't going to be room for all that "stuff" I'd managed to collect over the years so I filled the car several times and headed for Goodwill with each new load. I've been amazed how simplified my life has become and how neat and organized! Wow! Have fun with your project! I'll be interested to hear how it goes.

The Muse said...

i love this line...

"My biggest fault is collecting things."

We are two peas in a pod! LOL

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Judy, I'm not much of a collector--so I don't accumulate alot of 'stuff.' I like the rule: If you haven't used it in a year, get rid of it."

A good friend of mine collected everything. She even kept zipper wrappers (plastic) thinking that she'd use them someday for some kind of craft project. It's just a creative person's mentality.

June Saville said...

Cupboard doors are my biggest enemy Judy - it's too easy to close them and hide what you don't wish to know about!


Hi Judy, sad to say I'm a hoarder, but perhaps this being get organised month things may change.
Hope you're feeling better.
Take care.


Lilly's Life said...

Judy, I seem to go in cycles. I eventually get sick of all the 'stuff' I have accumulated and get rid of it all. The older I get the less I want and need. It is one of my resolutions, to not accumulate more stuff that never gets used! Great post!

bobbie said...

I admit it. I am a clutterbug. I do move the clutter long enough to clean under it occasionally, but back it goes. But I can find things when I want them. Except my keys, it would seem. I've lost them several times lately. TN said...

Judy, I fall under the category of "clutterbug". My husband fusses at me all the time about all of the "junk" I have. But honey, you should see what HE has. More "junk" that anyone I know of. What is junk to one person may not be junk to the other person. He loves his stuff and I love mine. If we both would clean it out, our house would be so much bigger...LOL But I am going to declutter very soon. I do that about once a year. I can't wait!

pamwax said...

I go in stages. I follow the rule if I haven't used it in a year or I don't love it to bits I get rid of it. But then I have all this space to collect new things. It is about time for a new clear out.

Kate said...

Hi Judy - It's Clutterbuck Kate here ! really am changing though, when I moved back to Glasgow from from Helensburgh 18 years ago I was moving from an 9 roomed detached house to a 4 roomed apartment flat... I got rid of a terrific amount - but! I must admit to having gathered even more 'stuff' But, in the past few months I have managed to get rid of more stuff and if I bring in anything I make sure I get rid of two things... that way it will eventually empty out my house again. I got the shock of my life the other night when Rob and I took my sister back home from the hospital.. she's the worst hoarder of 'stuff'.. The whole time I was there I had to stand and drink my tea 'cos she had no seats available to sit on.... She had a 2 roomed flat and had the cheek to tell me that I was lucky having more space and that if she had more space she would be able to collect and show things off better... this of course is rubbish as she would just gather more stuff ! I tried to get her to see how my clearing out double what you bring into the house would work - but it was hopeless..
You can't even get through the hallway of her flat without having to chimb over the Bicycle she bought 3 months ago and has never even taken out to the road... Crazy woman that she is...

Amber Star said...

I'm a keeper mostly...and that whole scissors thing...well, the dollar store has good ones and by golly I have them all over the house now. The real upside to that is my Fisker's are safe from "someone" using them on paper.
It is kept sort of organized..yea it is. and someimes..fairly frequently I go through and bad a lot of stuff that I no longer use, wear, or want and give it to whichever charity has called.

The gout is getting better. I went to my doc yesterday and got some cholchicine and I have hope it will get rid of the uric acid. Now the other side is I've been taking diuretics for ages for high b/p and that can cause gout and also I had started taking a drug with a lot of niacin and that also can trip off a gout flare. I've stopped taking both of those and hope it will be much better soon and will never return. I'm planning a post about this soon.

Judi "Jlo" Quinton said...

Dear Judy,
We're on the same wave length - thanks for this encouraging reminder how wonderful and freeing it feels to get rid of clutter.
That's what I'm working on this first weekend of the year.

Balisha said...

Hi Judy,
How are you feeling?
I am a neatfreak married to a clutterbug.

Beth said...

Judy, I confess---I am a clutterbug. Every time we've moved, I've been painfully aware of the fact that we have WAY too many books, but then I have a hard time parting with them because some of them seem like old friends. I do get attached to my books. Also, I am a sentimental old fool, so I tend to be one of those who still has cards and letters from thirty years ago, as well as all the little things my children have made me over the years. Plus, I also like collecting---in my case, it's wind-up toys and pop-up books. So, you can imagine how hard it is to fit everything into our little doublewide, which of course has no attic. But, soon Tom is going to build us some shelves that will at least let me put all my beloved books out!

I hope your tooth is feeling better now and that you don't have any further unpleasant dental events! And thanks so much for reading my story---your kind words meant so much.

Some Kinda Wonderful said...

Beth, I must strongly protest: Books are not CLUTTER!!! They are treasures. :)

Mare said...

Well, I have already started little by little to get rid of 'stuff' but I sure have a long way to go! Your post hopefully will give me a boost to get going.

Debi Kelly Van Cleave said...

Hi. I found your blog from Beth's. Very nice! I'll be back.

I'm both. You might enjoy reading a story I wrote about this on my blog--it's called "Feeling Sorry For Weeds." I put it on on June 2, 2007.

Happy New Year!

Grannyann said...

Oh gads, me and clutter. I need to do a blog on clutter this month. Thanks for alerting me to this as clutter month. I keep thinking about drawers that need to be organized and that's about all I do is think.

Margaret Cloud said...

Judy that list hit the nail right on the head, especially the magazines, I am starting to dig out and I will donate what is useable to Goodwill.

Rachel said...

I guess I'm kind of inbetween. I do have too much clutter for sure. We live in a very small house with tiny closets. My husband always said the closets were made for Barbie clothes! He's so right! But I do have things that I don't use often but I feel I need, especially those kitchen appliances like a blender or a stand mixer, the juicer, etc. With not much counter and cabinet space it makes it a real pain to store things. I do try to declutter occasionally to keep things in hand though!

Hope your tooth is doing well.

anewwayoflife08 said...

I have cuttler, but it's all rammed into cupboards does that count? Yes I suppose it does, time to start clearing.

Anne and Leigh said...

Hey Mom!

You are a NEATFREAK, and I am CLUTTERBUG! Wonder who I get it from! hehe! I know, my grandmother, however I am really working on it and Leigh and I are trying really hard to get the house organized for 09!

Love you!


Tabby ~ Godzchyld said...

I use to be a clutter bug, but didn't realize it until after Hurricane Katrina. These days I adore living in simplicity. I/We have only what we truly need and I'm fine with that. ☺

Happy New Year & Warm Hugs!

Jeannie said...

When I participated in the "Throw Out 50 Things" back in November, I was surprised to have found that many things. I prefer to own very little. Hubby is the opposite so it can be pretty interesting around here sometimes.

I hope that your tooth woes are behind you now and that you've started the New Year healthy and happy. :D

Jeannie said...

BTW, I have every last song on your music list. I've left your blog open while I play on the internet so I can hear some great music!

Grammy said...

Dear Judy,
I must admit, I am semi-clutter happy. I yearn to be organized, but I can find just about anything when I want it. So I am kind of organized in my clutter. Does that Make sense? I hope so. I go to my daughter, Teresa's house, and come away with new resolve to unclutter. She is the most uncluttered that I have ever seen. Oh, well, mayba tomorrow i will begin to organize. (smile here)

Nancy said...

I am a natural clutterbug, but I have been trying really hard to be neater and more organized since we moved to our patio home last spring. So far, I'm doing pretty well because I gave a lot away last year, and the house is arranged so that any piles of stuff are easily visible.

Jamie Dawn said...

I lean more towards neat freak, but I am not immune to clutter. Clutter does creep up on me sometimes.
I'm in CA at my brother's, and we've been working on his place. There's been an awful lot of decluttering to do. Today, I've been lazy and not done much house related work. It's been nice to not organize a bin or box. But... tomorrow, it's back to cleaning and doing some work around here.
I hope your home is less cluttered and feeling like there's a place for everything and everything in its place.
:-) TN said...

Judy, about the tea pot on my blog...I found them on line. They are rather expensive. Go to:


Thanks for the visit Judy,also for the kind words. I had just found the only photo I had of my dad so the idea came to incorporate his photo with a poem I was working on.
Look forward to your next blog as always.