Well, it seems as though Spring has arrived. I've always wondered about this "sping cleaning" idea. Now, I'm not one that likes to clean AT ALL, but why such a big emphasis on doing it in the Spring? Well, now that the weather has decided to become more mild and a bit sunnier than it has been in awhile, I actually do have this urge to clean things up. We moved into this house in the month of April (5 years ago), so I think this time of year reminds me of when everything was brand new and everthing had a place. It could also be that I'm tired of entering every room in my house and feeling overwhelmed by the amount of clutter. It makes me want to run the other way!
Since we aren't going anywhere this weekend we decided this would be a good time to start our cleaning spree. We decided to begin with our biggest problem child - the one unfinished room in our house. When we moved into this house in 2003 only the main floor was finished. This house has a daylight basement the same size as the main floor and we had the builder go ahead and sheetrock the basement, but there was no flooring, doors, moldings, etc. Within a few months we painted most of the rooms and put in carpet. I think it was another year or so before we got moldings and doors down there. Now it's almost complete except for one large room.
When we moved in back in 2003 Mateo was 3 and Jaxon was about a month old. We've been telling the boys from that very first day that this pretty large room downstairs would be there "play room". To this day it's still called the "play room", but there has never been any playing done in this room at all!
I should have taken a before photo of the room yesterday before we started. Imagine a 400 square foot room with white primered walls and no flooring (just a subfloor) packed with boxes and toys and just and overwhelming amount of "stuff". The clutter touched all walls and piles averaged about 5 feet in height. Crazy for anyone to have this much stuff and this is just one room in our house - yikes! (No, the other rooms aren't that bad, but they're bad enough.)
I'll take a photo of the room today, but mind you we removed about half the room yesterday (all toys) and moved that into the family room to sort into piles - throw away, Good Will, ebay/craigslist, keep, etc... I did take a photo of the family room and you'll probably gasp in horror when you see the amount of toys we had all hidden away in the "play room" not being played with at all. At one time we removed all buy a few toys from the boys for a punishment (Mateo was going through a naughty streak) and they never came out again. That part wasn't planned. We really did intend to bring at least some of the toys back, but believe me, they've accumulated more, so NO they are not deprived!
We've always tried to tell people that we have enough toys to open a toy store and now maybe they'll believe us. I'll post photos a bit later today, you may want to make sure you're sitting down when you check back :)
OK, so I didn't get to posting photos on Saturday. I did take the photos right after I wrote the first part of this post, so here goes...
The "play room" after removing about half the stuff... you couldn't even get down this little hallway without climbing over stuff.
Where Chico is standing was the worse spot. The "before" photo of this spot would have filled the whole frame and boxes were stacked just shy of touching the ceiling. I didn't think we'd removed anything but toys out of here at this point, but he had.
Now I'm standing where Chico just was.
OK, here's the shot of the basement from the bottom of the stairs looking into what would become my "weekend of fun". It took me all weekend to sort, find missing pieces and decide what to do with everything.
Doesn't Chico look excited? While I took over the toy part of the weekend, he focused on going through a ton of boxes of paper that was in the "play room". So now you can imagine what our living room looks like! I'm not going to show that right now, downstairs is embarassing enough. Thanks for all your hard work this weekend Chico!
Here's the "after the weekend" shot of the family room. We had pushed back all the furniture to make a work area. Hopefully tonight I'll get the last remaining things out of here and move the furniture back into position. We've got some Wii playing that needs to get done!!