Just another Minnesota Mom blog.

The Big Purge {2011 in 2011}

Posted: April 3rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011 | 2 Comments »

Saturday was the big day.  We’d pawned two of our three kids off on various grandparents so we could have fewer hands getting into all the stuff we were going to pull out of the “big” closet.  Our carrot at the end of the day was dinner at a Chinese buffet.  Lowbrow I know but I haven’t been to once since long before I had kids and I needed a fix really bad.  So that was our motivation.  get done, drop off at good will by 5pm and have dinner and time fore  neighborhood walk before bed.  Anything else was just icing on the cake.

We were up nice and early and Yogi Dad dropped Wyatt off at Grandpas while Judah and I stayed home to get ourselves in the purging groove by pulling everything out from under our bed.  I was actually a bit surprised, I thought there was a lot more under there than there was.  A few big Ziplock’s of bath towels ( I like to change my towel colors!) and some of Yogi Dad’s clothes. 

I sorted the towels into keep and donate piles and sorted the clothes into keep and too small/ donate piles.  Yogi Dad pulled some sweaters from the donate pile to motivate himself to lose a little weight by next winter and I added a few more hash marks to our weekly tally.

After that little project I was ready to go so I started pulling things out of the closet.  This is one of those closets that is under a staircase and it is tall and deep with 2 hanging rods.

We had various storage bins and wheeled carts with scrapbooking supplies and diaper boxes full of clothes that are either too small or too big depending on which boys you are talking about. 

And then there were Yogi Dad’s clothes.  He has a bit of a problem.

He’s never met a clearance rack he didn’t like.  Target clearance racks if we’re being specific.

So I just started sorting them.  If they were too small they went in the donate pile.  If they fit they went in the keep pile, again, he made the call on what stayed and what was donated, but there was no room for sentimental favorites from 10 years ago. 

I was very proud of him.  He was able to let go of things we’d been dragging around for years!  The final count of clothing items from his closet alone was 105.  Not bad.

Earlier in the week I’d culled our magazine bins in both  the bathroom and the  living room and had a ton of those to recycle.  I also cleaned out the storage until in the entryway, so those will go into this weeks tally as well.

Drum roll please…..

Donate: 206
Recycle: 131
Trash: 97
Gift: 8
Total: 442/ To Date: 769/ To go: 1242

So in about a month we’ve knocked out about a third of our goal.  Not bad.

And…..we are moving in about 8 weeks!  I’m super pumped that we won’t be dragging all of this with us and even more excited that we’ll have the space to go through anything that we haven’t already.  Hello ginormous basement!

How are you doing with your 2011 in 2011?  What do you count?  What do you keep even though you know you should get rid of  it?

Little by Little {2011 in 2011}

Posted: March 27th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011, Goals | 1 Comment »

Today I finally tackled the remaining cupboards and kitchen storage.

I started under with the shelving unit near our back door. I had a stack of fancy tart and torte and springform pans that took a dive from the top shelf on Thursday night denting them beyond repair thus starting my “trash” pile. I wasn’t going to get rid of any of the pans actually, but there you go. Fate steps in and takes over. I haven’t used any of them since we’ve lived here, nearly 5 years. I just like having them just in case…I guess their early demise was a kick in the pants to just get rid of stuff already!

So I started there, moved to the under the sink cabinet which proved to be filled with almost empty bottles of lots of cleaning supplies and really old Glade Plugins. I also had a stash of Method Sweet Water oil refills that I had bought on clearance because they were my absolute favorite and I thought for sure I’d find my Method plug in, alas it was not to be. Into the donate pile, maybe someone else has the old style one and will find them useful.

I matched up all of our plasticware with lids, pulled out anything that came from my Moms to give back to her and got rid of all of the reusable coffee mugs that were missing lids. All my silicone bakeware that I want to love but really really hate- donated.

In the end I had 97 things leave my kitchen- 2 huge bags to donate, 6 Target bags of trash and a small pile for the recycling bin.

Next week? The biggest closet in the house. We’re sending the Big Boys away for the day so we can work with fewer distractions. It’s probably going to be the biggest purge to date.

Here is the breakdown:
Trash: 45 items
Donated: 37 items
Returned: 7 items
Recycled: 8 items
Total 97 items/ 327 items to date/ 1684 items to go

I can’t wait for that middle number to be higher than the last number!!!

The Slacker Mom

Pantry Purge

Posted: March 20th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011, Blog Hop | 7 Comments »

This week my objective was to tackle the kitchen pantry and cabinets.  We have very little storage in our house in general, the majority of which is in the kitchen.  That doesn’t mean we have a lot of storage in the kitchen.  We have one bank of built-in’s which I’m guessing are from when the house was built in 1902.  We also have 2 smaller cabinets that are on either side of the radiator under the one “countertop”  (that term is used very loosly here).  We have also added a baker’s rack and a matching shelving unit- I need somewhere for my appliances, I need constant access to my Kitchenaid mixer.

So today I started to organize the pantry portion of the cupboards.  There are three doors that go from about hip level and are about 4′ high from there.  It’s got 4 shelves across and three doors.  Two of the doors are the pantry.  I had planned on doing the dishes and glassware which are in the 3rd door, but it didn’t happen.  Grocery shopping, dinner and then making butter in my food processor all came before that.  I think I’ll have my work cut out for me this week if I want to stay on my schedule!

So I started by pulling everything out, 1 shelf at a time.  The bottom shelf is all baking stuff and cooking oils and vinegars.  I had a lot of 1/2 used bags of things stashed in Ziplock bags all over on this shelf.  It was a mess.  I did a lot of combining and putting things into their jars and canisters where they are supposed to be.  Just doing this eliminated a lot of extra bulk that was taking up space.

In my closet purge I noticed I have a problem hoarding stationary.  In my kitchen I found I have a problem hoarding coconut.  That’s right.  I had 2 full Tupperware containers and 2 half bags plus a new unopened bag that I just got last week.  I suppose I should clean out this cabinet more often if I have that much coconut but I can’t find any when I need it. 

Other than the coconut that I tossed I really didn’t have a lot of things I threw away.  Only a few hard granola bars and boxes of raisins from the bottom of the snack bin.  I did have 13 items that were past their freshness date- so that’s all I’ve got for this week.

As I cleaned and purged and combined I was able to reorganize and see everything we had.  I had no need to buy cereal or any snack bars or crackers- we are good on that front.  Oatmeal- rolled, instant and steel-cut are all stocked up.  I was able to stick to my grocery budget get the next two weeks by using my pantry to start off my meals- the majority of my shopping was actually on the perimeter of the store except for a brief foray into the baking aisle for chocolate chips and Jerk seasoning.

The one thing i was hoping to find (yeast) we did not have and i totally forgot to put it on my list.  I have been wanting to make yeasted waffles for awhile now and Jenna over at High Gloss and Sauce posted about them today and now I’m kicking myself that I didn’t get any yeast!  It’ll have to wait until the next trip I guess.

Pantry Purge
–  13 outdated food items (T)
13 items / 230 items to date / 1781 to go!

If my goal is 49 items a week I’m in the hole for this week- I’ll have to make up for it next week I guess!

So come on all you 2011 in 2011 de-cluttering fiends!  Let’s see some links!

The Slacker Mom

It’s a Start.

Posted: March 13th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011, Blog Hop | 7 Comments »

This weekend was supposed to be a great time to start purging our closets and storage areas as we had 2 of the 3 kids visiting Grandma and Grandpa.  I forgot about my much needed hair appointment at 8:30 Saturday morning so I had a later start than I planned.  When I finally got down to go through the boxes that had been pulled from storage it was after 1 and the first of the boys was to arrive home around 3:30.  I had to work quickly.

The back half of our unit was all stacked so nicely that we didn’t even pull it out.  I’ll just do that when we move.  Not ideal, but with limited time I was happy to get through the front half so I could add more to it.  I quickly ruled out all of the boxes that I had just packed up last fall- mostly home decor and dishes.  Right now I have so much stuff in boxes because a lot of our rooms have been re-purposed for the kids.  I’m not getting rid of my china because I’m not using it right now- I will have my dining room back one day!

I was able to go through quickly and either keep/ donate or trash without much thought.

There was a lot of trash.  A box of Christmas ornaments had been crushed under another box and they were everywhere, many broken (none of my sentimental favorites).  I also condensed a lot of boxes down so there were bags if tissue paper, gift boxes and Target bags a plenty.

Saturday’s 1/2 purge of the basement storage unit
– 2 Halloween lawn decorations (broken- T)
– Graco Swing Frame (broken- T)
– Swiffer Wetjet (T)
– 2 lawn chairs (broken- T)
– 1 box Christmas ornaments (T)
– Desktop Computer (not sure where this is going yet)
– Microwave (large pick-up day T)
– Graco Carseat (CL)
– 2 Careseat Bases (CL)
– Grace Swing Frame (CL)
– Johnny Jump-up (D)
– Camp Chair (D)
– 2 Camp cots (R)
– Gameboy (D)
– 12 Gameboy Games (D)
30 items

Because I wasn’t super excited about my progress yesterday I decided to tackle my closet (and my bathroon) today.  I had better luck!

– 1 Jewelry Box (D)
– 12 Baby Blankets (D)
– 1 Boppy cover (D)
– 8 Handbags (D)
– 2 Windbreakers (D)
– 2 Dresses (D)
– 15 Women’s tops (D)
– 7 Belts (D)
– 7pc Target volunteer kit (D)
– 1 Dog harness (D)
– 1 Mail sorter (D)
– 1 Candle holder (D)
– 2 Sofa pillows (D)
– 1 Journal (D)
– 2 Bullseye Dogs (D)
– Bridal Bargains book (D)
– 13 Bridal Magazines (R)
– 9 Khaki shorts (D)
– 6 Khaki pants (D)
– 1pr Spa shoes (D)
– 75 toiletry items (make-up, haircare, etc.) (T)
– 1 Bedskirt (RE)
– 1 Suitcase (RE)
170 items

200 items total, mostly to be donated, some trash, a pile of mags to recycle and some items to be returned to their owners.  There were also 8 bags of trash, mostly paper trash.  I’m going to list some baby items on Craiglist and see what we can get for those.  I will never need 2 Infant carseats again so I think I’ll be OK just keeping 1 with a set of bases. 

I have a habit of throwing the contents of drawers into a bag or a box instead of going through it when I am moving furniture around and I had a lot of “desk” stuff that was just sitting there taking up space.  I need to make sure I am taking the time to get rid of stuff in the moment instead of keeping it for later.  I also seem to have a bit of a problem buying stationary.  I had about a dozen boxes of blank cards and Thank You notes just hanging out.  Ask anyone who knows me- I am not good at making sure the Thank You notes get out!  I think I need to avoid that aisle at Target when it’s on clearance….

The next big thing will be the closet in the boys room- that is a big project, I’m not sure I’ve seen the back of that closet since the boys were little! 

So in just a few days I think we’ve got a bit of a dent in.  217 items of 2011.  Only 1794 to go!

The Slacker Mom

The Great De-Cluttering {aka 2,011 in 2011}

Posted: March 9th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 in 2011 | Tags: 2011 in 2011, Blog Hop, Cleaning | 7 Comments »

First off.  I’d like to note that I cannot take credit for this adventure in which we are about to partake.  That would go to Melissa over at The Betty and Boo Chronicles.  I was cleaning out my Google Reader while waiting for the bus and skimmed her post and started Tweeting about doing this almost immediately.  After even more scrolling through my reader I found ANOTHER blogger  Jen, doing 2011 in 2011 who pointed me out to Kids *Stuff *World who’s got a list of people doing it…I’m obviously late to the party.

We are going to get rid of 2,011 things, from our house, in the next 297 days. 

That’s less than 7 things a day.  SEVEN.

I’m guessing the majority of that will happen before we move by the end of May.  So help me God if I bring the majority of it with me I just might go crazy.

We have stuff.  Lots and lots of stuff.  Like stuff coming out of every nook and cranny.  You know what we DON’T have enough of?


We currently live in the Victorian duplex with the super awesome cast iron tub that we started renting way before there was a notion that we might have kids.  Obviously, three kids later, we are bursting at the seams.  Although I loved this placed back then (and would no doubt still love it if we were just a couple with pets) it’s not working for us.  We will be moving.  By the end of May*.

Our house, is cluttered.

We have two kids with autism.

Clutter and autism don’t seem to mix.  Clutter is a distraction. I need my kids to engage, not get thrown off by the overflowing basket of toys in the corner. I have tried numerous times to rid the house of things that have no business still being here like the pile of cool patches for clothes that have since been grown out of and the one sandal that I have sworn the match is in this house somewhere. I have been looking for it for two years. You get the picture.

I have no delusions that I will be living in a sparse, modern home at any point in my life, but I’d like to be able to put things away and not have everything  in a perpetual state of being “out”.

So 2,011 things.

My Rules:
– I am not going to include mail or things that come in the mail or things that are trash to begin with.
– I am not going to include open boxes of food ( crackers cookies etc.) that we toss.
– I AM going to include anything that we donate to a food shelf or anything that is unopened but EXPIRED that we toss.

Maybe I will keep track of the mail/ magazine/ loose paper issue by pound….we do have a lot of THAT sort of thing.

So link up if you want to join in the fun. I’ll probably post my progress in starts and fits throughout the year. I will see if the Linky is a good fit for this, if not I’ll just discontinue it. I will keep the Linky open for the entire month for now. I may create a button. I’ve never created a button. Just one more thing for my Blogging To-Do list…

The Slacker Mom

Thanks Jen!

So, to start off I’m going to list the contents of a bag of clothes I have ready to donate. It’s been sitting by my front door for well over a month now, waiting to grow legs and walk itself to the closest Salvation Army all by itself no doubt.
– 1 Long wool skirt
– 1 pair of khaki capris
– 2 pairs of workout pants
– 2 tanks
– 2 sweaters
– 3 long sleeve tops
– 3 “dressy” tops
– 2 short sleeve tees
– 1 fleece pull-over
– 17 items/ 1994 to go

*Seriously, if you are looking to rent out or know someone looking to rent out a lovely house in a quiet neighborhood of Minneapolis…I am all ears.