For the past few weeks, my husband and I have been purging our household of unnecessary or unwanted items. We’ve generally been tidying up our home. We’ve culled toys, cleaned out closets, and started the process of sorting through all of our remaining baby items. If it isn’t fabulous, and if we don’t need it, we’re sending it out the door.
It’s felt incredibly good to de-clutter. We feel like we’ve got more space, and we generally feel less burdened by our stuff. We’re not done yet, though. The next thing on our agenda is to tackle a nagging list of minor household projects. Though none of these projects is significant, we want to accomplish them before spring comes and our focus shifts to working outside.
The list consists mostly of mending/fixing items in our home, though a few projects relate to general house maintenance. The beauty of this list is that almost everything is no or low-cost. So in the process of completing these projects, we won’t spend much, but things will look and function better for us.
Here’s a snapshot of our list:
- Re-glue the wooden high chair. (We’ve got an antique high chair that all four of our children have used. It’s held up beautifully, but it needs to have some small repair work so that our youngest daughter can continue using it.)
- Repair the porch of the girls’ dollhouse. (My mother and father-in-law made a sweet wooden dollhouse that is a miniature version of our own home. It’s seen some abuse from our sometimes rambunctious sons, and it needs some minor repair.)
- Rewire my green glass lamp. (I bought a lovely green lamp at a thrift store, but it turned out that the wiring was faulty. Once rewired, we’ll use it to light up our favorite reading spot.)
- Caulk the mudroom sink. (Our mop sink sees heavy use—and lots of dirty boots. Ten minutes spent caulking around the sink will make sure the water and mud will stay where they’re supposed to be.)
- Put away the lingering Christmas decorations. (Every year, no matter how hard we try, we inevitably end up leaving one or two things out. Because our decorations are in the crawlspace, it takes some effort to return them where they go.)
- Strip/wax tile floors (We installed commercial-grade tile floors—like the kind in grocery stores—in our home. They’ve worn well, but they do require occasional maintenance to keep them looking good. It’s a big project, but it will only cost us our time.)
Chances are you have a nagging list of your own. Maybe you need to drop off a box of items to donate, paint the staircase, clean out the freezer or hang the stack of frames that have been waiting behind your closet door. Make a master list of all those little projects and prioritize them based on what your time and budget will allow. If you’ve got so many that you feel overwhelmed, start with five things you can do right now, using the resources and materials you already have on hand.
Little things have a way of making a big difference in our lives. When you finish something from your list, you’ll probably wonder why it took you so long to do it in the first place. And you’ll enjoy the sense of satisfaction that comes from finally crossing those nagging items off your to-do list.