Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Simple Living part 3

Here is the last part of the Series Keeping the Balance and with it I hope to achieve a maintainable plan in creating a neat and happy house.  The one thing that I struggle with is my perfectionist personality, yes I willing admit to my slight type "A" personality that likes to have things in their place and really as a single adult with no children I don't feel like that should be difficult.  However, since purchasing a home that is almost 3x the size of any apartment I've resided in and has 2.5 bathrooms it feels a bit overwhelming to keep up with.   It's also not just myself that I'm cleaning up after, since my mom moved in with me last June and she doesn't share the same tidy-home philosophy.

For me it's been easy, because of the number of moves I've made in my 7 years living in Colorado.  I started out with a huge load and with each move I downsized, and even between moves I would sort through my items and make regular trips to the goodwill.  However, my mom has been primarily stationary for the last decade and even with the 3 moves she did make anything that didn't fit (floor to ceiling stacked) in her apartment was taken to a storage unit, and left there to be sorted through later.  Although nothing has really been done there except to add more items.   The sad part is that most of the items were not purchased with the idea of using them, but with the intent of reselling.  Let's just say that she never following though with that and she never learned to stopped purchasing items so her material items kept creating more chaos and taking up more space.  

I will say this that in the last year my mom  has  made some strides in improving on this habit.  We have sold many items and things FINALLY clearing out.    I do feel like we should be further though this battle, but there is always an excuse not to work on this process.  My mom does have many strengths that come in handy, like calling the city to take care of garbage left by previous tenants, trimming tree branches that have caused damage to other home dwellers in our neighborhood and on top she also works full time as a in-home care giver. 

A lot of her items are small and many, so what I hope to achieve is creating a numbering system to log them and then find a home for the items in the basement once they have been posted for sale.  Being that our basement is unfinished all items will need to be safely stored in sealed containers to keep them clean, and easy to reference.  I also hope to that the items will sell and well gain some much needed income to use for bills and replacement items.  I also want to schedule a day each week for us to work on these items, and have an area in the house where we can take professional-novice photos. 

Moving toward a tidy MCM Home
Life can be funny sometimes and remind you just how simple things really can be when it's the right time, and now seems to be that time for us.  We've been working on smaller projects that have allowed us to move forward in our tidy mcm home and it's filled us with such joy.

I also love that by traveling to DC and Baltimore has helped to remind me of how much I love to travel and that I don't want to spend my days cleaning my home, but that I want to spend my time with people I love and blessing them.  It's also ironic how I bless people is cleaning and organizing, which really is a passion of mine, and I'm glad to inspire others in that same direction.  

A few of the things we've done lately that has spun the wheel towards our mcm home was selling our sectional.   It's really been a process, as I started out with just wanting to sell the left side - one arm chase, but it wasn't meant to be until I was ready to part with the entire set.  So after taking new photos and updating the listing the sectional sold on May 17th. 

It was a joyous feeling that filled my heart when the living room was empty for the first time since moving in and now I was free to begin the journey of creating a tidy mcm living room.  I had to keep reminding myself to be patient during this search so I wouldn't buy something, because I think it would work and I may love it, but I really had to love eyes light up I LOVE this piece for us to buy it.   

Surprisingly it didn't take long and to find exactly what I wanted in my space and for far less then what we sold the sectional for.  It was pretty fantastic actually, and we even made a few new friends along the way and found some new stores to check out. 

 Instagram Sneak Peak: Sofa

 As written in the journey of creating a tidy mcm living room I talked about how we scored our mcm sleeper sofa, and after a few weeks I'm still loving this piece and sit on it often.  I'm also really looking forward to doing a DIY on my $4 mcm table tripod lamp.

 Instagram Sneak Peak:: Living Room MCM finds 

I think my favorite part of this journey is that it really didn't take long.  It was almost magical - like it was meant to be for us to find these items now.  It was such a fun time to spend with my mom and even more magical when we agreed on a few of the pieces, well maybe not the tripod table lamp, but the couch - YES!  You know it's meant to be when two people who agree to disagree on furniture styles find a happy medium and my home is really starting to reflect my love of the 1950s simple living.

 I'm also really glad that we waited and for only $80 we found a great loveseat for our space that was also a sleeper so we didn't have to compromise about having a place for guests to sleep.  This was such a blessing and saved us over $500 on buying a new sofa that I really didn't love, but could have worked.  Also, I love that the bottom legs are simple screw in pegs so I can swap them out for tapered legs. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention that the sofa is pretty light, even for a sleeper sofa.  A guy friend and myself moved it from the van to the house and it's pretty easy to maneuver in the house as well.  I love easy to move furniture!

I'm also very excited to have a sofa/loveseat height that works with my mcm tapered round end tables.  They are so adorable and at only $2.50 for a set of 2 was a steal. I'm also loving the scalloped edge black magazine rack that I found at the Salvo I purchased the sofa at.  I found it when we went back to pick up the sofa 2 days later. 

I'm hoping to have my gallery wall up and displayed in the next week or two, but I've been pretty hesitant on hanging anything.  I'm a command strip kind of gal, because I always end up hanging things up wrong.  This time I'm gathering some extra cardboard to cut out the frame shapes and note where the holes go and hope to purchase some picture ledges from IKEA so I can create a similar look to #3 on my design board.

As you can see my dining room is also being weeded out and the large objects are finding new homes.   My mom's had a commercial elliptical for a few years and it's been moved between my living and dining room since moving in and really neither of us use it enough to justify keeping it.  I had it posted on Craigslist a few months ago and people kept trying to talk us down so I had taken the ad down.

In May I decided to create a new listing with fresh photos and within 2 weeks the elliptical was been sold to a young medical couple who is very excited, which makes my heart happy knowing that it's going to a good home.   They were also very impressed with the quality and smoothness of the Precor, especially for our asking price. He is receiving a quality machine for about half the price new & I'm glad to bless such a lovely couple, especially one who is very grateful to have it. 

It's funny how it all happened, like an aha moment when you know it was meant to be. Now this lovely cruiser bike that I purchased on June 1st resides in it place.

What are some successes you've had with downsizing and decluttering?  Have you had any aha moments or just hit the right timing?

part 1: Fit Life
part 2: The Social Dancer


  1. This is something I struggle with on a daily basis. I so very much LOVE having a perfect home that is spotless all the time, but it is so hard to find the time to make it happen. And I don't even have kids yet! :P I can't imagine how I will be then.

    1. I'm with you on that one. Since bringing in 3 kittens it's been pretty difficult to manage my time & also traveling out of state for a few weekends out of the month I have even less time to weed through things and keep the house clean.