Home Cure, Week 4

Half way through and I haven't given up! Actually, with 12 weeks left in this pregnancy, I just might have to do another "light" round to focus my nesting energy. Or I should just get through these next 4 weeks before I commit to anything.

We were reminded this week that the school (our landlords) would like to move us out so they can redo the kitchen. (Background: previous water damage keeps us from using our bottom cupboards and marks along the dining room baseboard indicates there may be some molding when they start the project.) They have amazing timing. Seriously, the holidays are just a few weeks away, we have company visiting, and WE'RE HAVING A BABY! It should have been done this last summer while we were away (or the summer before that before we moved in), and we've dealt with it this long so maybe they need to address it this coming summer when we're gone again. If not, then give us a discount on rent and let us bunk with our friends who live on campus so we're not completely inconvenienced. (The inconveniences are numerous. Obviously having to move, but the other housing is off-campus which poses complications when we only have one car.)

Anyway, that was my stressor this week and my hindrance to feeling really motivated to keep up with the Cure. Then I remembered that this cure is about our home as a whole not necessarily the specific house that we live in. So, I'll keep moving along. Cleaning and sorting and organizing. Sure, I'll be deep cleaning the house too, but we'll also reap the benefits of the other solutions we find along the way.

Week 4: Deep Treatment

Clean up living room and related closets.
Amazing how much dust accumulates behind books on a bookshelf. Even if no one sees it, it's refreshing to know it's clean. Last year I organized the books by color because it seemed more visually appealing. I'm thinking I'll try grouping them by theme/subject and see how it turns out. Maybe we'd use the books more that way.

Also, we got a new vacuum! So Daniel actually enjoyed vacuuming the nooks and crannies of the room.

Repairs are being taken care of.
Okay, so I technically didn't finish this week. But in my defense, Daniel's the one that e-mails about needed repairs. And with the kitchen issue (see above), we (or they?) have bigger things to worry about right now.

Declutter books and all media.
I outboxed a couple dance DVDs I've only turned on once; I'm a little past my yearning-to-learn-salsa phase. I paired down our iTunes collection earlier this year. Still on the to-do list (wow, I really cheated by saying I finished this week): edit CD collection.

Cancel 75% of catalogs received.
A year or two ago I signed up for a couple "opt-out" lists and still reaping the benefits. I did call the 800-number for a baby stuff catalog that keeps coming in my name--I'm not sure why it was being sent in the first place.

Empty outbox.
Took some items to Goodwill and still in the process of selling the better quality baby items we don't need.

Confirm what's needed to increase/decrease color in each room.
I replaced the white flower pots on the shelf with these colored ones. Just to try out a bit of color.

And the dining room table got some fake flowers (from our wedding) on a placemat with colors I'd like to work into both the dining room and kitchen.

Ditto softness.
I moved some blankets from the closet to the top of our bookcase. Daniel liked the change, and surprisingly so does Brylee; I'm thinking it's borderline clutter.

Cook 3 meals at home.
Pasta, enchiladas and breakfast for dinner.

Send out invites.
Turns out our end of the Home Cure celebration will actually be our baby shower. My sister's visiting the first week of November and throwing us a shower here at our house. So, she took the work out of making invites, now we'll just try and get them to where they need to go.

Week 4: One-Room Remedy

Begin Shopping List and enter prices into spreadsheet.

Decide on total scope of work to be done.
The total scope of work is primarily clearing out, organizing and basic layout set up (crib, changing table). It'd be fun to do it all, but with a limited budget we're starting with the basics and doing the preliminary brainstorming, etc. so we can keep adding things as we're able. But I'm learning that cleaning, decluttering and making things functional goes a lot further than decorating alone.

Consider hiring professional organizer.
I'm pretty sure I could be a professional organizer. Just kidding. A little.

Visit paint store for samples.
Not happening this go around.

Clean out shed.
Okay, so this isn't really on the Home Cure checklist. But it is (was!) on mine. Cleaning out the shed area meant that a couple rarely used tubs (Christmas and camping items) could be moved to said area freeing up space in the nursery for, well, nursery items. Daniel did an amazing job! I helped a little, and Brylee did great at getting really dirty and entertaining herself.

So it may still look messy, but the fact that we can easily walk around and we added a few tubs of stuff is a huge improvement! Everything on the shelf is only one level deep (no bottles behind bottles unless they're the same thing), and they're grouped for easy access (i.e., all car washing stuff together). We'd still like to be able to hang the bike up on hooks and the seed spreader needs to be returned to its owner.

The laundry area is the biggest improvement. Daniel wanted his stuff grouped in the work area on the other side (previous photo), which left everything clean and clear on this side. I'd love to add an outdoor rug to make this space homier (and to not "worry" when clean clothes are accidently dropped on the stained cement floor). What you can't see (partly because it's not in the photo, but mostly because it's not in the shed) is that we cleared out a plastic storage tower of Daniel's miscellaneous college stuff. We've had it since we've been married and finally went through it. He kept the few items that still meant something to him, but everything else went. I'm proud of him and happy to have that clutter (visual and emotional) gone!