Lots Going On- Including Clutter!

I haven’t been blogging much or even answering your comments on my blog because so much is going on. I am going to continue blogging because I am a blogging whore or addict or whatever you want to call it but I have got to start packing. We move in three weeks. So if I seem scarce I am still here but packing. I can’t believe the time is closing in so fast.

I am looking forward to moving but I am not looking forward to packing. I want to take everything in my cluttered room but I know it all won’t fit in my new bedroom. My current bedroom is good sized and I have collected so much stuff (crap) in the past 21 months since my daughter de-cluttered it.

It was a guy in bed in this cartoon so I gave him a quick sex change and turned him into a woman.


I think the damn clutter fairy has a nest in my room. The bitch keeps me from throwing anything away. Fortunately she hasn’t gotten her evil clutches on my daughter. If I can’t chuck it Sarah can. I will have to leave the house or you will see me dumpster diving for stuff she throws away. All you will see is my legs sticking out of the dumpster.


The hardest problem is dealing with my extensive book collection. I really, really, don’t want to part with them. “Parting is such sweet sorrow.” OK, maybe I am being a little over dramatic but I love my books. Are you reading this Sarah?

Oh crap, I just found out why I’m fat. There is even a book on it.


Here is a quote from the author:

“Secondly, your home is a reflection of you, not just in some airy-fairy way, but in a real and tangible sense,” says Walsh. “It’s no accident that as our homes become more cluttered we’ve become fatter. It makes sense that if your kitchen is clean and organised and your fridge is well-stocked with ingredients for planned meals you’re more likely to cook and think about what you’re really putting into your body.”

Well, la di da!!! WTF does this all mean. If I de-clutter my room I will get thin or if I get thin my room will miraculously de-clutter itself.

Peter Walsh lives to conquer clutter! He’s the organisational guru on the US show Clean Sweep, a regular guest on the Oprah show and the voice of reason on his weekly radio program The Peter Walsh Show. When not aiding the de-cluttering of people’s lives, he lives in Los Angeles and Melbourne.”

This is all over the top for me. Maybe I should just get on the show “Clean Sweep” and let those suckers do all the work.

How many of you out there are clutter bugs?


26 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Little Miss
    Jan 06, 2009 @ 21:38:44

    I vote for “I get thin my room will miraculously de-clutter itself”. Whaddya say? Right, Joan? LOL. Peter Walsh is awesome though, but a bit extreme. I’ve watched him a ton on the show Clean Sweep and he does have some really good decluttering ideas. One I remember was not to bring something new into the house until you take something out first.

    Have fun packing. Rather you than me, although moving to a lovely home in Martha’s Vineyard is quite enviable – most definitely.

    I may have to watch his show to get some more ideas. Evidently my room is not going to miraculously de-clutter itself. I may give it one moe day though. ;-)r


  2. trishatruly
    Jan 06, 2009 @ 21:45:01

    Good luck on the de-cluttering, Joan. I have been working on that for the past year. It IS getting better!

    Last year’s garage sales made a huge dent in the crappola I’d been storing and I’ve been trying my darndest to get the kids to take stuff away if they like it.

    Books are the worst but just hang on to the ones you really love and set the rest free. Donate them to a hospital or a nursing facility if that would help ease the pain.

    Lotsa luck on the move!! Just don’t undo all the work you’ve done on that back of yours!

    I wish it was a better time of the year for yard sales. I never thought of donating the books to a hospital or nursing home but I am going to look into that. Thanks for the idea.


  3. teeni
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 01:08:12

    I’m still decluttering. I’m always decluttering. I must not be doing it right!

    I didn’t realize the move was coming so soon! I guess it makes sense when I think about it though so you will all be settled in with plenty of time to spare for the baby to arrive. Wow. Oh, that reminds me, I need ato send you an email.

    I’ve never heard of Peter Walsh but I like anyone who can help me declutter so I’ll have to look into him. And if you have to whittle down your private library some – don’t fret. Keep your classics and sentimental ones and remember that the local libraries keep all that stuff for you for free (and you don’t even have to dust them)! πŸ™‚

    I actually have been using the library for fiction. Most of my books are non fiction reference books. I have tons of old astronomy books and cook books. I probably only use 25% of the cookbooks. I am sure I can find somewhere to donate them.

    I need to get some organizationl skills. I’m going to check out that peter guy too.


  4. Hannah
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 02:24:26

    I think decluttering can be really hard because of the memories that go along with almost everything we keep. I try not to hoard too much, but I do keep EVERY picture my kids draw, EVERY note they write, EVERY workbook/portfolio from Kindy & school. One day I am going to have a hard time sorting through all that!
    Good luck with the packing & decluttering. Books are hard, but like the others have said, just keep the really special ones and the ones you will read often, and donate the rest.

    All those kids’ papers are in my attic. I too, saved every single one. Wait until Sarah comes across all those boxes. I have Kindy through high school stored there. All of my decorative stuff was given to me by the kids and family and friends. I have so much decorative stuff and you are right I can’t part with these things because of memories. Well,it has to be done and I will do it. Otherwise there will be no room for me in my new bedroom.


  5. museditions
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 02:30:47

    Yes, the memories! I remember Peter Walsh dealt with emotional attachment on his TV show. I didn’t know he had a radio show, I’ll have to tune in. I liked him. I watched him declutter other people and hoped it would rub off on me. It didn’t. Apparently, you have to actually DO something. πŸ™‚ Definitely, when you get even thinner, so will your clutter. After all, you have a wonderfully stocked kitchen now, dontcha?

    I really do have a well stocked kitchen. My daughter is going to buy me a freezer when we move so I can buy more meat at one time. I will only have to buy fresh produce on the island which is good because the prices are much higher.

    I didn’t realize I had to actually DO something. That is very disappointing. πŸ™‚


  6. odette
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 03:43:23

    this is so funny!
    last christmas, my 70y.o. mother-in-law came over for vacation with us, and she brought her new laptop with her so kj can give her a tutorial on some programs. i opened her laptop and saw that her recycle bin has lots of file in it and i told her to empty it. she told me that she wanted to, and attempted several times even, but everytime she clicks on emptying it, the computer asks her “Are you sure you want to empty…?” and she said she’s not sure she really wants to get rid of the files because she might need them again, so she always puts it off. πŸ™‚ it was kj who emptied it without asking her! hehe

    when i moved here in ireland, my heart was so torn with all the crap i can’t take with me. i can so relate with you. πŸ™‚

    That is so funny about your mother-in-law and her computer. The same thing happened with my wasband. He too, is afraid to empty his recycle bin. I can imagine how hard that must have been for you to leave so much stuff behind.


  7. JavaQueen
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 06:02:00

    I have a secret trick. I let the paperwork pile up. Then, I oh-so-gently set it into a gift bag. Where do the bags come from? I dunno. They just appear. When it’s chalked full of goodies, I tell one of the kids to run it to the basement and put it near my desk. There is now a collection of gift bags loaded with crap that I just couldn’t throw away. Thing is, by the time I get to the bags, all of the coupons and things are expired so its much easier to throw away then…. it just sucks that I am stuck in my ways— grrrr! My kids and huz protest whenever they see a new gift bag building up – LOL! So, yeah, might I suggest the “Gift Bag” Plan. It works for me, well- not so much- but it’s a sure fire way to hold onto shit that you should just throw away to begin with….. goodluck Joan! I feel for ya!

    Your Gift Bag plan is hilarious. I have so many freakin’ papers that I don’t throw out. I can’t even imagine why I keep this crap. Wait until Sarah looks in the cellar of the new house in a year and sees all the gift bags. Ha! Ha!


  8. mvobsession
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 10:15:40

    Joan – Getting rid of your books is really hard. My daughter has 2,900 of them (yes, 2,900) in the house and, you’re going to hate her, they are all organized. I don’t know how she does it but she can tell you exactly where a book is… I guess if you have that many you have to keep them under control.

    I’m like Sarah, I don’t have qualms about throwing things out… I made a vow when I moved in this house 30+ years ago to not collect stuff. We made sure the storage area in the basement wasn’t too big as you just fill up whatever space is available. I got rid of a lot school art work but before I did I took photos of all of them, much easier to store.

    I’m not perfect… I have issues with draws and closets and the garage so if you ever come visit the house may look organized at first glance but it truly isn’t.

    Good luck with your move and I look forward to hearing about your adventures on the Vineyard.
    Another Joan

    Your daughter could start her own book store. My books are a little organized but I am the only one who understands how they are organized. That is a great idea about taking photos of the art work. I am going to do that.


  9. Joy
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 12:21:32

    I can’t toss out books either. Even if I know FOR SURE that I’ll never read them again. Good luck to you Joan. I’m thinking of you all the time. It’s such an exciting time. We will all be here when you come back and have more time. Just let us know from time to time how it’s going.

    At least I am not the only one who can’t get rid of books. I will keep you posted as thigs progress.


  10. bkclubcare
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 13:02:03

    You better listen to that Peter Walsh guy; He’s the VOICE OF REASON! Love your posts when you pull in all the cartoons. LOL! Happy Moving.

    This won’t help but I find that it’s easy to throw away stuff when you have to pack it, carry it, move it, unpack it, and store it somewhere. It’s also easy to throw it away after you unpack – but that’s another part of my moving history that is kind of boring anyway.

    So, look on the bright side and be thankful for moving! Isn’t it fun!?

    I am going to check out that show Clean Sweep. I need a voice of reason. I will definitely keep looking on the bright side.


  11. Just a Mom
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 14:08:02

    My grandmother was the queen of clutter. Be she was an organized queen! She had an old 17 room farmhouse and every room had crap, I mean treasures in it. One room was just for buttons. She had boxes and drawers of buttons. Then she had a file card system for what box or drawer had what color buttons in it!
    Thank goodness I did not inherit her trait! If I don’t use something in a year out it goes!

    A whole button room, with a file card system.. That’s incredible. That farmhouse must have been cool, though. My sister is like you. She has no problem get rid of stuff.


  12. Red
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 14:24:03

    Purging is goooood .. I love to purge.

    I let you know how I feel about purging when I am finished. πŸ˜‰


  13. joann
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 14:57:44

    I’ve always had clutter in my life , even when I was a little kid-saved everything! When I moved just a few months ago I was so overwelmed . My kids were a big help,but then, they wanted to throw MOST of my stuff away. So I STILL had to oversee them overseeing my stuff!! PHEW!! I’m glad thats over with . Now I dont have as much stuff, but I’m working slowly on collecting MOOORE stuff πŸ™‚
    I love the Evil Clutter Fairy btw. And the person in the dumpster ? Perfect …..thats me when noone is looking . LOL !

    My daughter cleaned my room when I was in the hospital a couple of years ago. She knew if I was there I would keep everything. Fortunately I have such a bad memory I never missed anything she got rid of. I’m sure she will “surprise” me some day when I am not home in the next couple of weeks and get rid of stuff.


  14. birdpress
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 16:48:32

    I’ve gotten much better at throwing stuff out over the past few years. Moving helps a lot! As you are finding out, LOL. Plus working as a packer for a moving company helped me realize how much crap people keep that they don’t need! I always hated packing up the packrats.

    You would hate packing my bedroom. I am a bad packrat but I’m working on it. That must have been an interesting job, packing other people’s stuff.


  15. mrsvierkant
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 21:06:23

    Clutter. Yeah. It makes my butt look fat too. LOL.

    Purging clutter is good for the soul though. I do it a few times a year, and I do feel better. It is just so much work.

    Who knows, maybe I will really lose more wight when we de-clutter my room.


  16. fightingwindmills
    Jan 07, 2009 @ 21:50:27

    I like Peter Walsh. I used to watch Clean Sweep all the time. I also like the show Neat with Helen Buttigieg. She is so good at getting people to let go. And I always love her designs and wish she would help us. But the show is Canadian.

    I guess it really is all about letting go. I am certainly not good at letting go. I really need to work on that. I will check out the website for Neat.


  17. javajunkee
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 08:46:04

    does the dude make house calls? Ok but I’ve got an excuse people….I live in a twister magnet. There is no basment or attic …therefore the crap I don’t need..I mean that I might someday need has to be SHOVED somewhere. Please don’t look in my closet. Other than all of our books I can keep the house “seemingly” clutterfree. If you come to my house though and insist on opening a closet I will ask you to sign a waiver.
    Whatever happened to that flylady everybody was so hyped up on?

    Joan..when we traded twister magnets in I just pitched stuff without even looking at it..that’s how bad I wanted to get rid of stuff. (don’t know where all this replacement crap got in here)…but moving is just about the best inspiration to declutter. And having a daughter that will pitch it if you can’t is even better.
    I was beefing to my mom the other day about how I was going to hire my nephews girlfriend to come out and that set her off…”well it didn’t bother you and your sisters to come in my house and throw my stuff away” OUCH! She got me on that one. AND that cartoon of that woman with her feet over the dumpster..we caught our mother in that position out in the dumpster in her old driveway when we were cleaning her out. Not even kidding!

    That is so funny about your mother in the dumpster. Well, I am going to do my best to get rid of some stuff but I am sure it won’t be enough for Sarah. I’ll let her have at it when I’m done.


  18. The Vinyl Villager
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 11:29:29

    Moving, wait…should we have known this already? or is it a recent thing?

    at any rate…its one of the things I HATE most…good luck with it! Where to? got pics of the new place?

    I wish I could go on vacation and come back when they are all moved in. I’ll have pics of the new place soon.


  19. Romi
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 11:29:47

    It took me forever to find the will to do it, but I de-cluttered my desk at work, and now I feel like I can actually breathe! My closet is next on the list, but I’m not sure if any of this is going to help me get thinner…lol….

    PS: I laughed so much when you called yourself a blogging-whore, haha, good luck with the move! πŸ™‚

    I had to be truthful–I am a blogging whore!! Ha! Ha! I’ll let you know if I get thinner after I chuck some stuff out.


  20. The Vinyl Villager
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 11:30:52

    ok scratch my question. I somehow missed the post where you said it.

    I suffer from really bad brain farts lately.

    I suffer from bad brain farts every day. πŸ˜‰


  21. widdleshamrock
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 17:03:35

    I am a good declutterer when it comes to ‘stuff’, but a real hoarder when it comes to things the kids have made. Though as we homeschool, I have gotten tougher.

    Husband is a hoarder but I have resolved that his office is just that, HIS and what is in there is none of my business. This can be difficult sometimes.

    My daughter is going to find 13 years of school work for her and her brother when she goes in the attic. OOPS!! At least you can just shut the husband’s door and not see his hoard.


  22. widdleshamrock
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 17:04:07

    Forgot to add, good luck with moving.

    Thanks, widdleshamrock!!


  23. joanharvest
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 18:09:11

    Instead of trying to sort my books I answered all your comments. Procrastination at it’s best!!!


  24. laura
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 19:45:24

    I’ve been purging my house since this summer and I still find myself going to the Salvation Army every day with bags of junk! Tonight my sister showed up and took about 6 huge plastic totes and a grandfather clock and my house is still too full. And isn’t it fun that you and I are doing all of this in the middle of winter? Are we nuts?

    Well, at least I won’t work up a sweat. I just hope it doesn’t snow the day of the move. I also hope it isn’t windy or they will cancel the boat. I can’t believe I have to take a boat to go to the new house. Good luck purging and yes we are nuts!! πŸ™‚


  25. croneandbearit
    Jan 08, 2009 @ 20:26:11

    Peter Walsh can come over to my house and kiss my big ole beeehind! I’m not giving up my books. End of discussion. I have been working on decluttering but no one would buy my husband at the garage sale! (only kidding you know) This is like weight — it takes me 5 minutes to pack it on and 5 years to get it back off. Same with clutter – can’t very well toss out all the lovely items I’ve collected over the past 3,000 years, now can I? I feel for ya kiddo!

    You are so funny. You definitely have my sense of humor. Books are the hardest thing for me to part with. I think I can part with some of the cookbooks I never use and possibly some of my older astronomy books but that is it. well, you can always try to sell the husband at the next garage sale. Good Luck with that πŸ˜‰


  26. thegirlfromtheghetto
    Jan 09, 2009 @ 19:37:03

    I never have been a clutter freak, I throw it all out, but now that I am smashed in my condo with my hubby I have shit everywhere and I hate it. No room to store anything. This damn Michigan economy is making my butt look fat too judging by all the clutter in my basement, yikes!


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