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It will last longer. I spent the better part of yesterday cleaning up my room. We tore apart our closet last February, to make it "better". We still have no closet. There are certain things that just belong in the top of the closet. Personal things, things you don't need but can't get rid of, things you plan to make or fix one day. Those "things" were in every corner of my room, spilling off the dresser, piled in the corner, under the bed. I was indeed setting a bad example for my children in the clean-your-room department. My bedroom did nothing to calm and relax me in the evening, either. I often avoided turning the light on when getting ready for bed. Well, I took care of that.

Step one was getting rid of things we didn't need. I read an inspiring blog recently about reducing one's footprint. This blogger believed that in order to live sustainably, we needed to reduce our consumption by 97%. 3 in 100. The way she saw it, if we could make only 3 trips out of 100 potential trips, buy 3 items out of every 100 items we considered buying, we would have 97 moments to enjoy. I like her math. The first 10% is easy, she said. I'm always up for a challenge, so I decided to try 25%. Out of 4 items, get rid of 1. This method worked very well. In fact, I might have reduced by more than 25%. It goes to show that sometimes we just need a different perspective.

Step two was good, old-fashioned cleaning. I might need to change the vacuum bag, but my floors look great. Unfortunately, I resorted to child-like behaviour and stuffed a few things into the deconstructed closet space. Out of sight, out of mind. At least until I'm ready for the next 25%.

Step three was getting in bed, with a light on, and feeling calm and relaxed. I enjoyed the feeling so much that I stayed up past midnight to finish a book. I might have only freed up 25 moments to enjoy, but it felt like 97.
The final step will be keeping my bedroom clean. Finishing the closet will certainly help. Continuing to purge will be a significant step. The real challenge will be reducing consumption. Don't buy that fabric, even if it would make great pillows. Do I really need another skirt? Perhaps I should employ my cousin's technique. No new hangers. If you want to buy something new, get rid of something old. I'm often the recipient of these old things. I may have to practice saying no. This is not an easy task for me, to be certain. A clean room and 97 moments to enjoy are a good incentive, though.


  1. AnonymousJuly 09, 2007

    I relate! Just came from the dump...2000 lbs. of stuff I didn't need. Sure, the box or 2 of flooring I might have needed if the customer complained...........
    Several years of that results in a trip that hurts. I've paid for the storage, paid for the dump. and paid for the time I can't charge for. (just to be honest, some of that includes flood damage stuff)
    We'll it's gone now, til next time!

  2. Your room looks really pretty!! Room cleaning must have been in the air yesterday because that is what I did too. The parent's room seems to be the "catch all." I have to regularly do a purging on my room.

  3. That's a good idea--no new hangers. I have been trying this, too: a box, a bag, and a bin. Every day, one item goes into the donation box, one item gets recycled (old cards, magazines, etc.) and one item gets thrown away. At least. It makes it a little easier, though doing 25% at once might be wiser--less hemming and hawing!

  4. I totally needed this today. We're trying to remodel one of our bedrooms so that our ten year old can move out of the room she shares with her two younger sisters. The first step is to get rid of a bunch of things that do not fit anywhere else in the house. Thank goodness for freecycle!

    The hardest was parting with the record player and some of the old records.

    Hopefully, once we get the bedroom completed and the move done (by summer's end, if all goes well), I can work on cleaning and clearing my bedroom.


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