tidying up

A while back I talked a bit about the Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  Well last month I put her trademark Konmari method into action, and I am so glad I did!

The Konmari method applies not just to clothes, but to all objects around the house including paper, books, momentos, housewares, etc.  Clothes though are the starting point.  I emptied my two closets onto the bed and floor.  My closets are averaged size by San Francisco standards, but relatively tiny in my opinion.  All of my clothes managed to fit inside, but just barely.  After going through each item, identifying those that still spark joy, and discarding the rest, my closets were transformed!

I’ve even gotten rid of more items since the purge and I haven’t missed a thing.  Goodbye jeans that no longer fit, goodbye dress I never wore, goodbye clothes that were loved and worn tons but are no longer my style, goodbye clothes I binge bought on a too-good-to-pass-up sale that no longer get me– goodbye and thank you.

But the changes went beyond the closets.  As I applied the Konmari method throughout the house the energy in the space shifted – and my energy shifted!  Guests that stopped by would comment on how nice the house looked — “Did you paint?  … The trim, you changed the color of the trim?! … What did you do?  Your house looks great!?!”  And the answer was simply that I got rid of stuff that I didn’t need and that didn’t spark joy!  That’s it.  It is so simple and has such a huge impact.

Imagine sitting in your home and everywhere you look are things that spark joy — no, everywhere you look there are only things that spark joy.  Can you imagine?!  How awesome would that be?!

I had heard about Marie Kondo’s methods and I’d thought I got the gist, but it wasn’t until I actually started listening to her book that I really drank the Kool-Aid.  I commute 2 hours a day for work and I fill the ride with audiobooks.  The first day I started listing, I could not wait to get home and to start the tidying process!

So if you haven’t already read or listened to Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up – IN ITS ENTIRETY – then do so stat!  You’re going to love yourself for it.



Happy tidying!

spring cleaning

The official start of spring is just a few weeks away (yay!).  And it’s the perfect time to get a jump start on your spring cleaning.  I live in a small house and my guy has hoarding tendencies, so decluttering and organizing are recurring themes.

Here’s how I’ve managed to at least organize our spices and free up some much needed kitchen cabinet space.  And further below are some decluttering tips and motivational reading from Japanese organizing sensation Marie Kondo.  I love her notion that you should only keeps items that spark joy!  Then thank the items you decide to part with and then let them go.


With an inexpensive auto drip pan from Walmart and some magnetic spice canisters from World Market, I was able to free up several shelves in my kitchen– and I’m actually able to find the spices I’m looking for when I need them!  Just screw the metal pan to the wall, fill your spice canisters, and voila!  This project could not be simpler.

Below is a list of items if you want to order on-line.  Note that auto drip pans come in various sizes, so if you don’t see the size you’d like just have a Google for more options.  I simply walked into my local Walmart and bought one they had in-store in the auto section.

Lumax Galvz Drip Pan 47”x25” on sale at Walmart for $25 (was $31)

Lumax Galvz Drip Pan 18”x25” on sale at Walmart for $10 (was $13)

Blitz Oil Drop Pan from Ace for $15

Magnetic spice tins at World Market – set of 5 for $10

De-cluttering and organizing seem overwhelming?  Not sure where to start?  Marie Kondo is a Japanese organizational consultant who teaches that you should:

  1. Only keep items that spark joy!
  2. Thank the items that you decide to part with.
  3. Organize and tidy what is left.

Her books are best sellers and you can find tons of reviews and information about her philosophy on-online.  Good Morning America recently had Marie on to help declutter a couple’s apartment.  (View the GMA clip here.)  And several articles have been written on her work, like Purge sentimental tat and get rid of every ‘joyless’ item: The top 10 tips for decluttering your home, according to the ‘KonMari craze’ sweeping the world.  The top 10 tips list includes things like:

  • Avoid using stacking storage boxes as they encourage hoarding; and
  • Don’t keep things ‘just in case’.  It’s a false economy (they cause clutter, let them go).

But perhaps most important of all:  Don’t tell all your loved ones about your decluttering plans – especially if they have hoarding tendencies themselves.  Note to self.  😉


Happy spring cleaning!