Making a Home

Tidy Up

“The wise woman builds her house,
but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.”

Proverbs 14:1


In just a few short months my older son, Scott Jr., will be graduating from high school. I can’t believe it! It is an exciting time filled with anticipation. My parents and my in-laws are coming up (from Arizona and Florida respectively), and I am elated. We only see my in-laws a few times a year, and I haven’t seen my parents face to face in years. Needless to say, I cannot wait for them to get here 😀 Only, I need to get my house in order. Eek! With so much happening this spring with Scott’s graduation, and Shane playing baseball, I need to get started now! (I know, a lot of exclamation points!!!)

There is something deeply satisfying to me about a clean an organized space. It lets me fully relax and breathe. Of course, having a husband, teenage boys, and lots of activity, having clean, organized spaces are not always a reality. I’ve had to learn how to relax even when things aren’t clean and organized, but whenever I have the opportunity and time, I enjoy de-cluttering. Last summer I listened to the book “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” (aff. link), and it changed how I looked at clearing out clutter.

Does it spark joy? That’s one of the questions she asks in this book. I realized that I have kept many items because I felt like I should. This goes beyond eliminating things that are utilitarian, or that are even pretty, but asking if this item sparks joy for me and if not, do I need to keep it. I’ve barely started the full process of clearing out clutter, but in the areas that I have cleared out I’ve been able to use this method and it has helped a lot. As I continue in this manner I look forward to the results. I think that having less stuff will make it easier to clean, easier to find things, and just less stressful in general. Not to mention my home will be more inviting and welcoming if I feel like what I have are things that bring me joy.

One of the rules is that you only get rid of your own things, not your families things. Thankfully, since we go through our things about twice a year and I’ve always had the boys help in the process of getting rid of their own things, they now do this on their own on a fairly regular basis (without me helping them!). I’m glad to share the new element of asking them if their items spark joy, and for them to ask this question as they go through their things. Although I’m pretty sure this question will result in some eye rolls (teenage boys), at least I’ll know that the thought is in their head.

How about you? Do you have certain times of the year when you clear out clutter? Do you get your family involved in the process? If you’re looking for a new perspective I highly recommend this book (“The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”). I was able to listen to an audio book on Youtube (for free – you can do a search, and several choices will come up). There are some weird parts toward the end, but just let them go and take away the good parts and I think it will be helpful to you as well.

“Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.” Titus 2:4-5

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