by DaniGirl on August 23, 2010 · 8 comments

in Happy @ home, Life, the Universe and Everything

Phew, it’s been a crazy week. How crazy? I haven’t taken a picture in more than a week. Can you imagine? Truth be told, I’m not actually sure where my Nikon is right now. I think I saw it last on top of an empty bookshelf that belongs in the dining room but is propped up in the corner of my bedroom.

My house? Is a disaster. We are on a zealous mission of decluttering, updating, painting, packing and reorganizing. You know how they say it’s always darkest before the dawn? Yeah. It’s very dark at my place right now. There is a glimmer of hope that once the freshly painted walls dry (damn humidity) and we push all the furniture back against the walls, and put things back on the shelves, and get the stuff all back in the proper rooms, it will probably look pretty damn good. Although when I sat on the filthy floor last night – the same floor that I had polished to a shine about five days before – and looked at the chaos around me and nearly wept for the immensity of the job of putting it all back together? Yeah. Dark.

And also? Painting half the main floor and 1/3 of the upper floor of a house while also trying to declutter while also wrangling three little boys? In a word: challenging. In six words: what the hell were we thinking?

Before we tore the house apart to make it paint-ready, the place was actually starting to look pretty spiffy. We got the windows washed, and took down the ugly blinds in the kitchen that we should have replaced seven years ago. We put new drawer pulls on all the drawers and cupboards in the kitchen, and removed six metric tonnes of useless bits of paper that had been accumulating on counters, shelves and corners throughout the house. I threw out five vases I haven’t used since we moved in and six travel mugs that smell like pee but that have been living in a colony on a high shelf. I filled two garbage bags with old bath toys, bottles with an inch of coagulating shampoo, expired skin creams and other pleasantries from beneath the collective bathroom sinks of the house. And I filled a big box with (shhhhhh, don’t tell the boys!) a ridiculous amount of kids’ meal toys, loot bag crap, dollar store diversions and orphaned bits of toys and games.

One of the hardest thing to part with was my collection of old magazines. I didn’t mind so much parting with the five-year-old copies of Today’s Parent and Chatelaine, but the ten year old copies of Astronomy and Sky and Telescope were tough to part with. And the circa 1997 collection of Sympatico Net Life magazines were entertaining as hell to read — the Internet has come a long way in 14 years, baby! Why was I keeping them in the first place? Well, because I had been keeping them at one point, and once I’d started, I just kept on keeping them on principal. And I wonder why I have clutter issues.

I tell ya, even if the deal with the new house falls through, now that we’ve cleaned up and gotten rid of most of the crap we’ve realized we’ve got room for another family of four in here — and the place will show like a model home!

Here’s my gift to you: an idea that is so elegant in its decluttering simplicity, I am kicking myself for not doing it five years ago. We picked up one of these storage cases that stores 320 DVDs or CDs. We filled it up — and then we (gasp!) threw away the boxes! No more rows upon rows of CD jewel cases or movie boxes, just one little black case about the size of a case of pop.

We’re still working on the final details of the house we’re buying, so I can’t tell you too much more about that just now — but it’s looking positive enough that we’re going ahead and listing our house this week if all goes according to plan. Know anyone in the market for a lovely three bedroom, three bathroom end unit in Barrhaven, walking distance to schools and across the street from a playground and park? Freshly painted and soon to be clean as a whistle. Send ’em my way, wouldja?

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Paula August 23, 2010 at 10:37 am

Moving is one of life’s big stressful moments and when you really think about everything that goes into buying and selling, not to mention the actual physical re-location it is no wonder. I don’t think you need to worry about selling your house however. They get snapped up pretty fast in your area.
Hoping all goes well with both the final purchase and the sale. Best wishes.

2 freemommiestuff August 23, 2010 at 12:37 pm BuySellDeclutterUpdatePaintRenovate: Phew, it’s been a crazy week. How c…

3 Annika August 23, 2010 at 12:40 pm

OMG…this is soooooooo exciting. I haven’t been blog reading lately, so I was in for a treat today when I caught up on yours. I HEART Manotick…is it the place on Colony Heights Drive that backs on a park?! I saw the for sale sign go up last week.

Good luck with your sale, keep us posted!

4 Annika August 23, 2010 at 12:41 pm

I meant to say “sold” sign!

5 Sara August 23, 2010 at 2:15 pm

Do you have a price that you are looking for for your current home? My girlfriend Christina and her fiance are looking for a place in Barrhaven. She grew up in Old Barrhaven and would like to live in either new or old part.

BTW, I always hate the decluttering part. Last time I moved, I held a “moving In” sale in my new neighbourhood for the things that didn’t look like they belonged in the new place plus things I couldn’t sell from the other place.

6 Coco August 23, 2010 at 3:18 pm

Here is a fact for you… to a death in the family, the most stressful thing for a woman is moving. It sounds like you have it all under control. That makes you an amazing woman!

7 Amy @ Muddy Boots August 23, 2010 at 7:48 pm

Oh Dani, I feel your pain. But just think of the pay off. You should have taken some before and after pics! YOU OF ALL PEOPLE.

Can’t wait to see the new place, though.

8 Chantal August 25, 2010 at 9:28 pm

Your tales are really making me itch to de-clutter my house. If I could just ditch the 8mo for a few hours day. Dam it, he won’t go to anyone but hubby who is at work all day. Oh well, I guess I will have to wait and just tackle small projects in the mean time.

I can’t wait to hear all the details about your new place and if I hear of anyone looking I will certainly send them your way!

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