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Organizing Your Home for the Seasons of Life


We can all agree that there are seasons of life from the day we are born to the day we exit this earth. There are good seasons and bad seasons and we learn to adapt to the current situation with hope for the future. This is how we should approach organizing our home. Change and growth is not a one-time process.


As seasons change, so should our environment and what we hold onto. Our past is our past and there is only one way on our journey and that is forward. It doesn’t mean getting rid of an item that deeply means something from a loved one, but holding onto 50 items from family members may be unhealthy and cause more clutter and subsequently more psychological stress than memories.


Below are a few examples of times to get rid of clutter.


Grown Children

We miss those giggles and the innocent amazement of the world around them. However, holding only those toys for when your adult children make you beloved grandparents is not helping the clutter of your home or in moving forward. Part of the joy is shopping for that new grandchild! Toys change and generational interests change. Think what kept you busy as a child and how that changed when your children were entering that age. Video games replaced board games for the most part (not that a few board games on hand is a bad idea…just not 15). Barbie dolls that were played at age 10 when you were a child are now the “go to” for 5 years olds as 10 year olds are already using phones or the web. Life changes.


Employment Status

How about all those old clothes we have overflowing our dressers and closets? A past time where dresses, suits, dress shirts, high heels and fancy blouses were needed 5 days out of the week. They served a purpose in the past when working. If you’re retired or a stay-at-home mom who has no plans to work the next 10 years are they serving a purpose anymore (other than cluttering up space for stuff you actually wear)? In 5-10 years if you plan on entering the workforce will they even be in style? Fads change yearly. The one year rule is a great way to start decluttering! If you haven’t seen it, wore it, or forgot it existed for one year then it’s time to purge it. Keep casual items you wear all the time. Trade the high heels for sneakers or sandals. Trade the business dresses for sundresses. Trade most of the blouses for t-shirts or nice casual tops. I would recommend keeping 5 outfits for special occasions but fill your dresser and closet mostly with items you currently wear.


Change of Residence

Those heavy winter sweaters and coats came in handy during the polar vortex but now that you live in Florida do you need something that bulky and warm for mild winters? Would lighter sweaters and sweatshirts serve you better for those chilly (but not bone chilling) days? Bulky items also take up a massive amount of space unless you “space bag” them. I would recommend keeping 7 heavier sweaters and one heavy coat for visiting colder states in the winter (and yes, space bag the crap out of them so they fit under a bed). Again, think about now and your future needs.


Death of a Loved One

This is a hard one for everyone. When you loved someone deeply, getting rid of their belongings can be the most painful process a human being could go through. I suggest waiting until you can think of them with joy and not heavy sorrow. If thinking about them brings too many tears, it’s probably too early to clear their clothes. Time tends to heal (although there will always be something missing) and only you will know when that time is. When the joyful memories supersede the pain, then rationally it is time to figure out what creates fond memories and what is just an item. Favorite clothing of the loved one can be quilted into a blanket (many people will do this service for a minimal charge). How would it feel to snuggle up in a blanket of your loved ones clothing than have them just hanging in the closet? Take your time with this and make sure you are ready to move forward.


Paperwork

Again, get rid of painful memories if the paperwork is of no future legal use. Be honest with yourself. The idea is to move forward into a happier life. If the paperwork is important, then by all means use a filing system that works for you whether electronically or paper. I always recommend having backups of the birth certificates, death certificates, mortgage papers, quit claim deeds, insurance policies or anything else incredibly important. Put them in a different location entirely so if there is a fire or flood you will still have access to them. I learned this mistake when I lost a quit claim deed and it cost me over $2,000, many court appearances, and over a year to settle in getting me administrative rights as there was a minor involved. My quit claim deed filed would’ve been under $100 to file (yes, even organizers mess up).


These are just a few reasons to clear clutter and re-organize spaces. If you can open yourself to changes (which are inevitable), life can surprise you with riches you hadn’t expected. As our needs change, so should our environment.


Life has many seasons. Embrace them because each has its own journey and beauty.

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Lisa Firebird
Lisa Firebird
Jun 09, 2021

Thank you for the one year rule! I have had 2 pairs of shoes under my bed for years! I keep saying “I will wear them when I go out” but every time we go out, I end up throwing on my comfey tennis shoes or my slip on short boots. The ones under my bed are tie on half boots and kind of a pain to put on but they are cute so I hold onto them. LOL ok I just realized I should have gotten rid of them A LONG time ago because Im never going to wear them! Thank you Robin! :)

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Robin Pufunt
Robin Pufunt
Jun 09, 2021
Replying to

Great decision Lisa. I’m a comfort sort of woman too and have only two pairs of heals for weddings, etc.

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