Thursday, April 17, 2014

Household Update

I'm still on a vendetta to simplify, organize and go green in our living space and routines.  Some attempts have been more successful than others.  

The other day I took my own mason jars to Bulk Barn in an effort to reduce plastic waste coming into the house.  When I requested that they weigh my jars before I filled them, the staff looked at me like I had three heads and insisted that it was against their policy.  I didn't push the point but hey, I tried at least. 

So I brought my clear plastic bags of stuff and emptied them into my jars at home.  The loose chai black tea and rhodiola black tea are quite tasty indeed, but I'm not that impressed with Bulk Barn's prices.  I thought I'd treat myself to a handful of Brazil nuts but when the cash register rung them in at about $7, I declined.  

As an update, I'm happy to report that I have organized and purged clutter from every single part of our home in the past month.  Every drawer, every closet, every shelf.  Books have been donated to good causes, bags of clothing given to grateful recipients and masses of paper shredded.  Not to mention mountains of garbage and recycling sent to the curb.  Who knew that a pair of self-professed clutter phobes could accumulate so much in the three years we've lived in this house?

After finding out the cost per page of laminating at Staples, I went to Amazon and spent $35 on a small laminator for our home use.  I've laminated our phone list, visual schedules for the kids and even one for me to check off with a dry erase marker so I don't have to make a fresh paper list every day.  I just operate better with a list in front of me!  

I've taken boxes and boxes of paper clutter, photos and documents and scanned them into the same data management software that J and I resell.  This data has offsite backup.  I put the loose photos into a small box on the shelf and archived the remaining save-for-7-years tax documents into one binder. All other important original, personal documents such as birth and marriage certificates go into another zippered binder that will accompany us if we ever have to leave the house in an emergency.  

I'm now about 2/3 of the way through paper shredding the rest to use as dry material in our compost efforts this spring (if it ever comes for real).  

I actually have quite an abundance of empty shelves, drawers and cupboards in various parts of the house.  A single friend who is on an endless loop of house-sitting, is even storing her few boxes of household goods in a corner of a storage closet that previous owners used as a photo darkroom. Our house still gets messy and needs cleaning often, but without the extra clutter, it doesn't take very long at all!

I'm excited and self conscious all at the same time to tell you about my own closet purge and refill.  Soon, I promise!