A family's story

Clutter Intervention

I think we need a clutter intervention. Cluttervention?! Seriously…shtuff is taking over my house…I need to start somewhere, but I think, perhaps, I have clutter-induced ADHD. I have no idea where to start or how to organize myself. It all looks overwhelming and makes me roll into the fetal position. Maybe if I write it down here, I’ll find a good place to start…I REALLY, REALLY need to start.

I will not post pictures, as you may be tempted to get a hold of that hoarders show. We’re bordering it…trust me. I am a pack-rat. Totally cop to that one. Also? I am raising three more of my breed. When I do try to go through some of the shtuff that is taking over our house, the boys tend to rescue their beloved treasures and snarl at me like Gollum taking their “precious” away. For serious.

The family room is where we spend the most time. Hence, it has toys galore. In our toy “organizer”, aka, toy crap-catcher, we have some Little People, some pieces of Ben 10 characters, a few Pokemon figurines, a few super heroes (mostly versions of Spider Man), books (ranging from Infant to Early Readers) and some Transformers. Mixed in among that hodge-podge are a stethoscope from a doctor kit, 2 wooden puzzles, one with a missing piece, some random Target dollar bin bribes, and 2 pairs of smudgy sunglasses. One bin in that “organizer” is holding mostly orphaned limbs from toys that have been well-loved.

In a 3-drawer organizer next to the toy “organizer”, we have cars. Hundreds of Hot Wheels and Match Box cars…and that is after Hubz and I have pared down the collection at least twice in the dark hours between midnight and 3 am. Shhh. Not a word, people…not a word. Next to that organizer, I have scrapbooking boxes (the nice plastic IRIS ones) that are dedicated to (1) wooden blocks, (2) Bey blades and Bey Wheels and the launchers that come with them, and (3) some magna tiles.

Moving on to our kitchen….I have a baker’s rack that holds more kid stuff. It was my attempt at an art-and-craft center. Now it is a messy, disheveled heap of coloring books long abandoned, half-filled notebooks of Jake’s creations, two cups full of unsharpened pencils from school (seriously, this “no-edible-treat policy” our district has employed is drowning me in pencils), some toddler art easels and that Crayola thing from a few years ago that plays music as your child draws/colors/slams his hands happily up and down faster and faster on it to drive you to the breaking point. But I digress…..

I have an entire cabinet in my kitchen devoted to kid art supplies. There are poster paints, water colors, smocks, paint brushes, and paper. I have construction paper in there, crayons, and foam stickers. Also, play doh. One of Tate’s favorite “toys” has been play doh. Every year since his first birthday he has gotten some sort of play doh set. Sometimes he gets multiple ones. For instance, we have TWO cake-making stations. TWO. And he refuses to let me throw one in the donate pile. He has caught it EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. We also have Coco-Nutty Monkey, an obnoxiously huge tin of accessories, and that play doh candy making gumball thing from this past Christmas. (His beloved Sundae Shop is in the basement right now with his ABA supplies.)

Let’s move to the basement….which is filled with MORE KID CRAP. Seriously. It’s kind of the dumping ground for the big stuff that is an eye-sore  takes up too much space in our main living area. We have the train table that Jake got when he was 2. He loved that thing. L-O-V-E-D it. Tate, not so much. He could have cared less. Cole occasionally gives it some attention. We also have a toy kitchen/grill combo. That one actually still gets lots of loving. They like to pretend they are working for Mr. Crabs and make crabby patties.  Then we have the Fisher Price Imaginext Corner. Seriously. We have a castle, a fire station, space shuttle and rain forest. Not to mention several assorted “accessories” for each. There is some space-man thing, too. It was “the next big toy” the year that Jake was like 5…and it rarely gets any attention these days.

This past Christmas, my dad gave each of the boys life-sized Angry Birds. They were so excited about them…until they weren’t. Now they are collecting dust mites down there. Yay. We have a book shelf down there with several more books. (Note to self, maybe I should open a children’s library….) The shelf also houses several plastic animals, per Jake’s love of anything found at a zoo or aquarium. We have a bin of cars, a bin of plastic see-through blocks from when the boys were infants, a bin of super hero accessories (swords, shields, helmets, and a cape–I think), a bin of random trucks/cars/Ben 10 figures, etc.

Oh, and due to the age of my children, we have Legos. Thankfully we received several storage devices for said Legos this past Christmas, so they are not strewn all about the house. However, there is a five-drawer organizer in our family room, and 3 plastic bins of Legos in our basement, as well. There are random Legos in Jake and Tate’s room, too. It’s a rainbow of plastic fun.

Well, that’s enough of our clutter for one day. Having typed this out, I think I will start in the family room and make my way through the down stairs and into the basement. It will have to be done stealthily, however. Like when all 3 are out of the house at school and in those wee, dark hours when nothing is stirring, not even a mouse.

Editor’s Note: I’d like to make it known that quite a bit of this “shtuff” is given to us for holidays and birthdays. Hubz and I don’t buy all of it. We buy our fair share, but definitely not ALL of it. This disclaimer makes me feel better, a little bit, anyway, so, yeah….

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Comments on: "Clutter Intervention" (3)

  1. Wow. Sounds like you need my help. I am def a minimalist. My boys are definitely NOT. So when I get a moment in the house by myself, I go crazy and clean and throw out and pack up to give away soooo much stuff (crap). They manage just fine when they come home to find the place airy and spacious.

  2. Our kids own the same toys. And I only have the one. 😉

    Btw, if you are on a “cleaning bender” after you’re done, come on over. I’ll let you deal with Toots when he discovers some things (which he has a photographic memory for) are missing…

  3. I’m gonna need therapy after reading this post. Either that, or a big black garbage bag of my own!

    Good luck!

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