Fireworks and hurricanes.

Yesterday someone in one of my decluttering groups posted asking if anyone wanted to have an accountability partner for today for decluttering the kitchen. I said I wasn’t kitchen’ing, but would totally love that for another area.

I hadn’t decided where yet, I just knew I wanted some tangible momentum. I love all the mindset growth, and getting the previously hard “to do” things done, but I’ve been focusing on maintenance decluttering, so new progress has been lacking.

Today I decided to do some behind the scenes decluttering. These two drawers end up collecting all the things. I don’t want spaces like that.


I committed to accountability, so off I went. Three grueling hours later I was finally finished.


I threw some stuff away and put other things in a bag for donations. A lot of stuff is just going into a box to work on later–the paper clutter and the memory things.

I didn’t have the mental energy to go through it efficiently. Some days I’m just not going to be able to purge the way I want to. I have to remember progress over perfection.

Honestly, by the time I finished today I was too exhausted and drained of energy to enjoy the progress. I’ll get there.


Approach. Appear.

I didn’t know what the rest of my day would look like earlier when I wrote. I felt on top of everything, but in that way where you are until you suddenly aren’t.

I finished my paper clutter pile from yesterday and tried to occupy L because Chris has the flu, as well as detox from another round of medicine that didn’t get here in time. I know he feels like shit physically, mentally, emotionally, psychologically. I take great comfort in the fact that I am not the woman who contributes to that. That I don’t try to find (false) validation in making him feel worse. That I don’t have the means to feel better at someone else’s expense. Especially someone I love so much.

So I spent my day focused on me and my growth and my worth and betterment and evolution. And I was feeling so connected to me that I found connection with R and S and L too.

I taught S about time management. I empowered him with management of his own time, while giving him confines and boundaries to work within. I told him I was like the boss. “You gotta get this, this, and this accomplished by x time, but you manage the rest. You run your own show.” And he practiced in kind. Sometimes fast and sometimes slow. But it was his and I let him own it and he took pride in it.

I taught the same to R. “Do what you want with your last day of winter break, but any food trash needs to be cleaned by 5.” She argued she might not get it done by then and I countered reasonably and objectively, “You’ve got four and a half hours to do this one thing. Choose how you want to do it. You can wait til 4:55 and then haul ass picking up trash. Or you can do it all right now. Or you can do some now and some later. It’s your show. But ya got til 5, and if at 5 it’s not finished, your phone goes on the island until it is.”

No shame. No guilt. No tough love. No bringing up past anything. Just right here right now, reasonable objectivity. Might as well have told her the sun was gonna set by 5pm. Just a fact.

And she responded with the same respectful objectivity and it was barely even reluctant when she said, “okay”.

And L and I worked on puzzles together today. And I let it be his show and we made a game of it, but I never rushed him or did it for him. I let him lead.

I gave them the opportunity and then I stepped aside and let each of them shine today.

What a blessing and a joy to take me and my feelings and my thoughts out of the equation and just talk to them.

I was afraid I’d break today. I was hoping I’d be able to withstand the bend. Turns out I stood tall all day.


Touching the edge of her skin.

I’m doing Allie Casazza’s Declutter Like a Mother challenge for the third year in a row. I have lots of Allie stuff and she was literally the reason I got my house decluttered in the first place. A task that was no small feat, by the way. She taught me how to declutter and throw stuff away and make use of my space. Two years ago she changed everything for me.

I remember most of her principles and often redeclutter throughout the year, but it’s never as good–never as life changing–as when I do this challenge in January.

All of November and December I could feel all the clutter–all the stuff–bubbling over, and try as I might, I wasn’t adequately getting it out of my house and off my radar.

Wednesday I spent two hours doing the bathroom and hall closet. (This completely goes against her 30 minutes a day, I know.) She says to look at the room and decide what your intent is with it. I want a place that is clean and clutter free so it can be a place of peace. Honestly, that’s pretty much what I want from every space in my home.

Day one challenge was to throw away all the trash and stuff you don’t use in your bathroom. I did the hall closet too because that’s where the buildup goes.



Day two was supposed to be trimming down all the excess, except I don’t have 15 bottles of concealer and two dozen lipsticks because I don’t do the makeup thing, so it was moot. I was going to at least wipe down the counters, but yesterday was nonstop and I went through a bunch of paper clutter and just, no. I didn’t wanna and so I never made time for it.

I call bathrooms a huge win and the feelings I feel from tangible, kinetic productivity is immeasurable. The spaces are clear. The trash is thrown away with no extras lurking for later. I feel full in a contented way for the first time in a while.

Up next: the kitchen.