Tuesday, August 18, 2015


After seeing a lot of hype about this tidying book on social media I decided to read it. It was an easy read, and I read it in two days and was eager to try her system for tidying. Some of it was a strange to me as far as talking to your belongings and treating them as though they have feelings. But I just thought of it as another way to foster gratitude. By truly being thankful for having such an abundance of things and being grateful for all the small things in my life that allow me to do certain things.
A friend who has done the categories recommended doing them when you can be alone for a chunk of time. Not something I have very often, so the first chance I had with my little helpers gone with grandparents I got to work. She talks about how people often organize by room, and this is a faulty method and it is better to work by category. The first category you begin with is clothes- for reasons she outlines in the book. To begin you pull out every clothing item you own and put it in one place- on an empty floor or bed. This helps you see the amount of things you own. Marie says so often we have so much stuff stuffed in so many places we aren't using or really appreciating. And to see it piled in one place is eye opening to see how much you really own.

I dumped everything from my closet drawers, closet, and other random spots on my bed. (Except from my dresser because I did it a few days prior- even though she says to do it all at one time. But I was excited about it and wanted to get started on something.) She says you have to hold each item in your hands to really assess it. And ask yourself does this spark joy? Some things were easy to tell right away. I noticed they were stained or worn, or I hadn't worn them in I couldn't remember how long, or remembered that every time I wore that thing I didn't really like wearing it because the fit was weird or didn't love the color. Or out of my 10 OC shirts which ones were really favorites. Those things were easy to discard. And some things I could say right away that I enjoy wearing them and feel good in them. Then there were some things that were nice and in good condition, that I wear occasionally...or I might wear in the future  but couldn't decide if I really find "joy" in them, and I got a little stuck with those. So, even though I don't think Marie would approve I did make a "maybe pile" of some things I'm hanging on to to go through again later. I plan on doing that soon, and  if I couldn't decide for sure quickly then its a good chance they are items I need to discard. (Or as she says- thank them for what they gave me or taught me and let them go with joy rather than holding on to things because of emotional ties of the past or fear of something in the future. Haha :) ) The rest went to donation and a small pile of name brand things in good condition to take to a resale shop.

My discard pile- 81 clothing items, 9 pairs of shoes, and 3 overnight bags.Yikes.

After I finished, I put the hanging items back in my closet that I really enjoy wearing. Sleeveless shirts, tshirts, long sleeved shirts, and pants. I love walking in there and seeing it so clean. I wish I had taken before pictures of my closet and drawers!

Dresses, skirts, and some jackets and scarves. 

And then I folded the things in my closet drawers using her method. I googled konmari clothes folding method and watched several youtube videos on how to do it. And I read some blogs people had written with their before and afters for some inspiration. This top drawer has my tshirts (I got rid of several of them), hoodies, and tank tops. You put things in the drawer vertically so you can open it and see everything at a glance in the drawer rather than when stacked on top of each other and you can't see what's in the bottom and more and more get's stuffed in and you have no idea what is on the bottom.

Workout clothes: tank tops, tshirts, two jackets, shorts, capris, and tights. Before this drawer was stuffed full, and I had my winter running stuff and jackets in a different drawer because it wouldn't all fit. I didn't get rid of much from this drawer but with folding them this way it all fit in better. And in my dresser drawers in my room I had several empty spots and room to move my make up and some jewelry in to a drawer so its off my counter top.

Whew...it took me about 3.5 hours. But I'm super pleased with the results and love things not looking as full and cluttered. I love the idea of appreciating the things I do have, rather than just buying more and more and not really using all the things I already have and going forward not just buying something because its a good deal but really thinking about if its something that will give me joy to wear or own. And the process helped me think about the aspects of the things that really gave me joy and what I didn't like about the things I didn't. So hopefully that will be helpful in future purchases thinking about what I do like and what I don't. I still need to go through my accessories and jewelry. I refolded the kids clothes using the method, and their things also fit much better in their drawers and is easier to find things we are looking for. The next category after clothes is books. Not sure when I'll be able to get to it, but hope to soon! We have tons of children's books and books in the cabinet in our office. She claims in her book that her clients she works with do not relapse in to clutter once they learn how to tidy correctly. I'm interested to see once I finish all the categories if it makes the difference she claims it will.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Marval Weekend

We went to Marval for a marriage retreat before Isabella was born and Michael has wanted to go back ever since. We went this weekend on an RV camping trip with Cappy and Nana.

Art time with Nana

The river was freezing, but so refreshing.

We had s'mores...of course. :) Some serious s'mores eating going on.

Playing by the river in pjs while breakfast is being cooked. "Heavy rocks. Throw heavy rocks"- Benjamin said 100 times.

Trying to catch a tadpole in her net

Skipping rocks with Cappy

Golf cart rides!!

We floated the river, threw lots of rocks, played at the playground and splash pad, swam at the pool, played candyland, took lots of golf cart rides. Isabella didn't want to leave and asked if she could come back again another time. We had a great weekend! Thanks Nana and Cappy!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Hayden Family Maternity

We almost didn't take pictures this night because it had been storming, but decided to go ahead and take some between storms. Which turned out to be a good thing since Katie went in to labor 5 hours later, almost 3 weeks early!! I've never cried while editing photos, but after watching my friend go through the heartache of loss and the hope of repeated adoptions that fell through, I felt so overjoyed seeing their connection and joy anticipating their sweet baby. We planned to take some other pictures over the weekend and get some with better light since it was stormy, but obviously that didn't happen since baby came early. So I was a little disappointed in them as there wasn't much warm light, but I was glad we didn't decide to wait and wouldn't have had any pictures at all! We had fun and laughed a lot.

Monday, August 03, 2015


Making a village out of pool noodles and paper from her highlights magazine. And Benjamin in the background thinking he is being sneaky foraging in my bag for a mint.

We took the kids to see Inside Out. I wasn't quite ready to take Benjamin to a movie, he's much younger than Isabella was for her first movie. But we didn't have a babysitter for him and he did just fine. He was completely still and motionless for the first 25 minutes or so. I couldn't tell if he was terrified or just taking it all in. Some of the deeper themes were lots on the kids, but we all loved it!

Her vegetable garden getting some rain. 

We played at this park several times and Benjamin finally got the gumption to go all the way up to the twisty slide. And now he goes over and over and over the whole time we are there.

Asleep with a few of his favorite things...his plane, paci, blue blanket and the loose string on it that he holds while falling asleep...

My Aunt had some extra tickets to Mary Poppins and offered them to us.  It was a great show. Isabella remembered some of the songs. It was a little late and long for her. She got restless several times but then a song or scene would pull her in. The scenes were well done and flying characters were great. The next day she asked if we could go see it that night again. I look forward to more plays and shows with her!

Blanket capes have been a big thing around here lately. 

At the duck pond...
Benjamin's strategy is to eat a piece and throw a piece. 

We play ponies every. day.

Playing at the Thunder Fountain.

The kids shared a milkshake from Nic's after playing in the water. I was doing whole30, so I didn't have any. Whoo hoo!

On the last day of July we celebrated Cappy's birthday. Those kids LOVE their Cappy!