Our Family Home, where I found my passion
Updated: Sep 23, 2019
I am the type of person who takes the saying “if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing well” a little too far at times. I won’t do something if I don’t think I can do it well, but if I do commit my energy to something, I give it my all. While of course, this attribute serves me well in some respects, I am aware of the pressure I put on myself and the stress and anxiety that causes not just for me, but my family as well.
I’m a mother of two kids only 20 months apart. When my second child was born, that pressure really started to build. I really felt that the amount of responsibility I had at that point of my life was way too much to handle. I didn’t feel like I could give either of my babies the attention they needed from me and the pressure I put on myself to do everything perfectly made me feel like I was failing on all fronts: as a mother, wife, friend, professional, and forget about self-care, I had no time for me.
The pressure finally hit a breaking point when we faced the reality of the plans we had to sell our house and move. We moved into this house only 2.5 years before and just a couple months before our first baby was born. My apartments and houses had always been neat and tidy and well decorated, but I moved a lot in young adulthood and often had boxes of things that went unpacked and forgotten. Add two kids in less than two years, and a small townhouse in the city with no garage, or place to store a stroller (or anything else) and we were bursting at the seams.
How was I supposed to stage my house to sell and then pack up all our belongings to move while taking care of two babies? On top of it all, we had a planned trip with extended family to Disney World just a few weeks before our move! While there was so much to be excited and happy about, as a mom I felt like my to-do list was insurmountable. It was hard to enjoy everything when it all felt like so much work.
I finally gathered my courage to speak to my Dr. about how I was feeling. I also decided to read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo (thanks Aunt Moe). My Dr. helped me get the help I needed and Marie Kondo gave me the inspiration I needed to wrap my head around moving. I knew before I started that the only way to do it well, was to do a major purge and get everything as organized as possible before we even started to think about packing. I followed the KonMari method and purged every space of our home. It felt incredible! After every space I got through I could literally feel the pressure coming off of me. I felt lighter.
We didn’t measure how many lbs of stuff we got rid of (to Goodwill or our family and friends who wanted it) but it was a lot! Since we were about to move, we weren't setting up our home, but preparing to pack it. Marie Kondo’s method was really effective for helping us get organized to move and she really inspired me to find the joy in being organized, but I knew her method wouldn't be realistic for our normal life. I knew the pressure to live up to those incredibly high standards would be too much for me and especially my family. It didn’t really jive with how our family functioned day to day, and I wanted things to be easier, not harder.
There are so many benefits of an organized home. The bloggers at VeryWell Mind discuss the negative effects disorganization can have on our health. Clutter can really prevent us from being able to relax and disorganized spaces also actually cost us time and money. But getting organized isn’t easy. It takes a lot of work.
When we moved, I was determined to set up our home in the most functional way possible and update the interior to match our style along the way. Because this isn’t just a house to us, it’s the house. The house that is going to be our family home. The home where we will raise our children. My oldest child is only three, so we have many, many years of family memories ahead of us in this home. It’s so important to me that home be a place of refuge for me, my husband, and especially our children. When a home is beautiful and organized, it naturally becomes a place that is easy to relax in.
Trying to set up our own family home got me to really look for answers on how the modern family can keep up with the demands of normal life while maintaining beautiful, functional and relaxing homes for their families. The decorating part comes easily to me, but I know that if I struggle to stay organized, I’m probably not alone. So as usual, I really committed to finding these answers. I read every home organizing book I could get my hands on. I saw tons of photos of beautiful closets and pantries, spotless laundry rooms (owned by people who don’t wash their own clothes) and got lots of tips on how to organize a junk drawer or fold clothes perfectly (because putting laundry away needs to be harder?). But none of them hit home when it came to truly overcoming the disorder of an average family home. If anything they just made these goals seem more unattainable when you factor in real life. And that’s because the aesthetic part of home organization, the pretty pictures that catch our attention on Instagram, that’s only half the equation.
In real life, families really live in their homes, they make messes and they have to clean them too. While it’s all good to purge and spruce up a space, it’s also a lot of work. I knew that if I didn’t address whatever brought our last house to such a state of disorder, our new one would quickly end up the same way. I finally started to find some answers in some pretty surprising places. Not the organizing books I expected them, but books like Radical Forgiveness; The Law of Attraction; and Time to Parent. These books helped me to let go of things that I had held on to for far too long, make room for more abundance in my life and learn how to be more present and manage my time to take better care of myself and my family.
Now that I’ve found such passion in organizing our home and see the difference it has mad for our family, I want to help others do the same for theirs. I know that I can help families face their organizational struggles because I struggle with the same issues! I'm not perfect and my house gets messy too!
Through this blog I’m going to show you how we continue to organize our home to make it our place of refuge. I hope you’ll subscribe to get inspired to organize your own home, and if you’d like more help, please take a look at the services I’m offering.
If you were to empty all the boxes in your storage space what do you think you would find? Let me know in the comments and start thinking about it. Truly getting your home organized starts with the main storage space (whether it’s a basement, attic, garage or closet). Next week I'll show you how we started our family home makeover in our basement.
See you then!