Pretty Neat – UPDATE!

Look what I did:

I was so inspired after reading and reviewing Pretty Neat that I couldn’t help but attack that horrible problem area.  So how did I do it? I used a few of the tips from the book:

1. The power of NO! – Okay, so I didn’t shout it every time I checked the no box, but I did occasionally say “NO!” out loud as I went through the section of the table with requests for volunteers and advertisements for after-school activities.  The power of indecision and the guilt of not doing enough made it impossible for me to send back volunteer forms and recycle after-school activity forms, but armed with my new commitment to just saying no, I blew through that section of my clutter.

2. The ability to let go – I pulled out the bin of art that I have saved from my children’s years of pre-school and took a look at how much room is left in the bin.  Then I headed back to my dining room table and found the items with handprints, footprints, or cute little writings such as the book that my daughter wrote in the fall.  Everything else?  I recycled it all, guilt free. After all, no one wants to see macaroni art twenty years later…

3. Delegation, baby – Not everything in that clutter belonged to me.  There are also two little ones that live in this house and like to bring things into it from sticker sheets to little “treasures” that they want to save.  Well, it was time for them to go through it and decide what treasures they really treasure.  Everything else found a new home, and guess who took the save items to their proper places.  Not me.  The kids were able to put their own things away and in the end we had the gorgeous table you see above.

Is it wrong that after we finished our job, my daughter asked if we were in the right house?

Don’t forget!  The Pretty Neat review and giveaway is open until Monday of next week, so go enter and get your organize on 🙂

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  • Good for you! I am glad you are exercising your NO muscles! It is so freeing!
    And getting rid of artwork? That’s a tough one, but every parent has to do it sooner or later!
    And now I need to clean off MY table, lol!

  • Neat idea – You can also take pictures of all that old art and make a free shutterfly book out of it. That way you have it, in a nice book, and it’s not cluttering up your life! 🙂

  • Oh, Amy, you should see my kitchen! I need to have a placard made to sit on the kitchen table that says: “DO NOT put anything here, under threat of prison.”

    Even if I can organize my stuff, it’s training the family that’s the hard part!

  • Lynn (lynnsc08)

    Great work!! I’ve got the same problem areas in my house and really need to commit the time to getting things finally cleaned up for good. We’re looking at possibly moving this summer so I want to get a jump on getting things cleaned out.

    I second the idea about using the kid’s art in a Shutterfly book. I also send the stuff I don’t keep to family members since they’re pretty far away. They can still feel like they’re part of our daily life and it’s up to them to determine what they keep and what they throw out.

  • Good for you. I hope to have before and after pictures of my decluttering soon. I am going to get everyone involved too. and if it doesnt have a place, it needs a place, so find it one!