Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Head start

Well…I’ve caught the bug. Just a bit early this season. The clutter is driving me MAD and I had to do something about it. I’m still enjoying the magic of the season, believe me. (Sitting by the Christmas lights and eating my second cookie of the day right now.)

I’m just overwhelmed by the stuff already.

Not the Christmas stuff, just the STUFF. Usually I wait till all the holiday decor is put away before I start the new year decrapification process, but this year I just couldn’t wait.

There was a pile that was growing in the basement that was a little big HUGE reason why I didn’t want to wait any longer.

Be prepared. I’m showing you my bad side. Again.

I’ll preface this photo with a “it looks much worse than it is.”  ;)

Told you I was a piler. :)

The pile started in early October –- I moved a bunch of the little odds and ends down there when they installed our new floors.

When we got things back together, some of the stuff just kind of conveniently stayed down there. I was tired of going up and down the stairs. Something like that.

OK, for real, the pile looks way worst than it is. It’s long. And wide. But low.

OK, I give up. It was bad.

I started attacking in yesterday and got it all down to one little bag of stuff I just don’t have a stinkin’ clue what to do with. You know that stuff? The stuff that hurts my head when I try to figure out where it belongs.

It’s a small bag. I can deal with it. (And I will.)

Now the space is cleaned up:

And I’m totally PUMPED to keep going. The basement is always our dumping ground. By the end of the year it’s a junk-magnet.

Every year I purge like I’ve never purged before. This year, I’m FOR REAL gonna purge (like never before) cause we’re hoping this will finally be the year we start finishing the basement.

We have said that every year for almost eight years now, but I think it may actually happen this time. :)

Even unfinished, I’ve shown you how we use this space a ton:

image

Who needs ceilings? Or drywall? Flooring? Flooring schmooring. :)

We’ve moved some furniture down there and turned what will be a movie room space into an actual comfortable, cozy movie room until-a-movie-room. We’ve been down there enjoying it every night this week.

I’ll show you how that space looks soon, and share our plan for finishing this space – I’ll need your advice if you’ve finished a basement!

So, has the decrapification bug bitten you yet? What’s the one space you’re itching to get to?

I hope to post again before Christmas, but I’m just kind of enjoying our home and family, so I won’t make any promises. :)

If I don’t talk to you before, I want to wish you and yours a very lovely, warm, beautiful, MERRY CHRISTMAS!! I’m so blessed to have you all in my life. :)

67 comments:

  1. Two differences in my house and yours(actually many, but whose counting) ...1) don't have a basement, oh how I wish, 2) my treadmill is my holder of piles! And as for the bag you don't know what to do with, just wait until you get a bit older, you find places for those things but NEVER remember where and when you stumble upon them it's like a little Christmas present waiting for you, just where you left it!:) Merry Christmas to you and your family, do enjoy!

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  2. I am so with you!! I have been cleaning out closets and the garage and purging!!! Not sure whats in the air this year, but I am ready to be back to the basics!!! Merry Christmas Sarah!

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  3. My garage! AHHH - it drives me batty! I have decrapified it several times this year already. Yes, I said SEVERAL TIMES and it is still a mess, not because we have a lot of stuff out there, but because nothing ever gets put away. I am so going after it once Christmas is over!!

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  4. My PHOTO'S NEED to be gone through desperately and it's driving me mad! From the digital part to the printed pieces (or the ones that aren't yet printed AND I have no clue what's been printed and what hasn't.) So I've started digging in. It's a BIG job, but I'm determined to bring it to Delightful Order. :) Great job on your basement.
    DaNita

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  5. Merry Christmas Sarah! We tackled the "American Dream", namely, finishing the basement this year-- TON of work, but we do love the space! DO IT DO IT DO IT!!! ;) (if it were only free. . .. ;)

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  6. I love the term decrapification! Too awesome!

    I absolutely have the bug already. I have a growing pile in our utility/storage room that is going bye-bye the first week of January... I already have the charity pick up lined up as motivation!

    Your basement is looking good! It's nice to have a useable space even though it's not "finished".

    Have a Merry Christmas!

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  7. Happy Christmas to you and yours...we are in the throes of basement hell as well. As two widowed people with all their own stuff and most of someone else's stuff...yikes.

    It's taken a year, but we are making major progress! Yea us!

    I went on a kitchen clean out rampage this week...it was as fun as it was needed.

    Here's to 2012 and an organized year of the Dragon!

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  8. The decrapification bug bit me too! Instead of having a garage sale or giving stuff away to goodwill, I set everything I didn't want in my dining room. Then I invited all my friends over and let them take whatever they wanted. It was so fun and they were pumped!

    If I had a basement to store stuff in, it would be floor to ceiling crap in there!

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  9. Lol! I love these posts...wish more blogland ladies showed the furr real part of life. My pile is by my front door...coats, backpacks, shoes, gloves, hats and a couple of bags (guilty...fellow bagger here). The garage is next on my list.

    Enjoy your family time!

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  10. The one space I'm itching to get to? The garage...ugh! I can't even park in there and it's just stupid. We downsized from a much larger house, which means my garage is packed with all the wonderful things that won't fit into this tiny townhouse we now live in. :(
    I foolishly thought I could convert part of the garage into a crafting/sewing space. Yeah, that's not happening. I can't even leave bottles of water out there without them freezing! Oh well. Guess it's garage sale time.....

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  11. Check out the latest This Old House magazine. . .they have lots of ideas/tips for finishing a basement.
    I love, love, love the holidays but I get frustrated with all the "stuff" that comes into the house because of them. This year we talked our kids (8, 9, 11, & 13) into doing a trip instead of gifts -- yea! Although they'll still get Santa gifts on Christmas Day, I feel like we halved the stuff coming into the house because not only did we do a trip for the kiddos but I asked my sister, for the second year in a row, to do an "experience" with my kids rather than buying them something and she said "yes" and is doing that instead. Woohoo!!! Now if I could get my mom on board. . .and don't think I'm a total Scrooge. . .we still do stockings and buy gifts for needy kids and all. . .just what more do we, middle-class-Americans, really *need*?!? It sure helps with the STUFF around our house!!! Merry Christmas Sarah!

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  12. I absolutely LOVE your blog and have been following you for a while. My sister and I hope to launch our blog very soon...and I hope you will follow :) I can totally understand your need to clean and simplify. This year I am hosting Christmas dinner and as I attempted to set our Christmas table I found my self clearing out some of my Christmas decor! I am ready for clean and everyday. I LOVE Christmas but am excited for a clean fresh start. Merry Christmas to you and your beautiful family. May the good Lord continue to bless you all. Genelle

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  13. Oh how exciting! Looks great so far, can't wait to see it finished :)

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  14. I have three spots that constantly attract clutter. The garage, the corner of my bedroom, and the Guest room. I am totally committed to taking all of 2012 (if I must) to clearing out the clutter and dealing with the undone projects. But it's really frustrating when things keep getting in the way. The washing machine just gave it up tonight - nice timing huh? Yet another set back; but know that your posts are where I get some hefty inspiration. Thanks for being real and offering such great inspiration.

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  15. wow~ turns out good! ohhh. a room w/o clutters are good.haha

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  16. I am dying to decrapify our playroom/office/junk spot. It is DRIVING me crazy!!!!!
    Jennifer

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  17. I took 3 bags to Good Will yesterday! Something about the idea of a house full of guests makes clutter feel like a dirty little secret!

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  18. Just like you, I am a piler, too! :D And I've also been itching to clean up my room which has tons of garbage. :D

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  19. good job you'll be so much happier for it Merry Christmas

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  20. Your basement looks like our 3rd floor. Mine is worse though! Used to be the kids playroom/computer room but the kids are grown now. It's piled wall to wall. Want to tackle it but must wait until after the holidays. The most recent additions to the piles are the Christmas decoration containers.....just can't bring myself to put them back behind the knee-wall only to pull them out again on the 1st. Out of site....out of mind. Please send me a kick in the pants note after the holidays to make me do it!!

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  21. Decrapafication!! I LOVE that word!!
    Yes, I need to do it! And I will! I plan on decrapafying the area above my kitchen cabinets the week I am off work, which is the week between Christmas and New Year's.
    I have a TON of M&M stuff that needs to washed and I am then going to put them on shelves that will line the walls of the playroom. That's the plan! There are a few "but firsts" that will need to be accomplished prior to the ultimate goal, so we shall see!

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  22. Yes, I did some the other day (mostly my son's paper creations, which were starting to spread all over the house). I allowed him to choose a certain number of things to keep, which gave him some control. I was inspired (terrified?) by recently getting hooked on "Hoarders" -- 'cause nothing says holiday spirit like watching disturbing levels of dysfunction and animal poop. ;)

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  23. Nice work! Doesn't it feel better? That "Before" shot looks like my girls' room and the guest room. I am hoping hoping to get in the girls' room and do a major purge before Christmas. With baking and cleaning before Christmas Eve, I don't know if I can fit it in. But like you, the clutter is driving me mad!!

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  24. I'm sooo with you!! I've been a purging fool lately...My issue is I can't get rid of anything or have a garage sale until the divorce is done...it's been a year now..still no end in sight....SO you do NOT want to look in my garage...you may never be seen again :/
    *Holiday Hugs*deb

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  25. I'm so over the clutter stage. My rule now is if I haven't used it or worn it in the past 6 months out it goes! It is a wonderful feeling knowing that "less is more" and living by that rule. My basement is slowly becoming the empty space it was meant to be - there is NO living down there as it is cold and dark!

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  26. I definitely have the bug! I am attacking in small bite sized pieces though....which is frustrating because it takes forever! By the way, I love the visual picture that "decrapification" presents!

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  27. Oh it has definitely bitten me too. I bagged up 3 garbage bags full of outgrown kiddo clothing and stuffed animals that I think we need to part with. I just KNOW the influx of stuff over the next few days would drive me crazy if I didn't do something a bit pro-active!

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  28. Our garage is such a giant pile of crap I can't even go out there and water my plants I had to bring in. I literally can't. I just got a postcard from the city of Austin saying Big Trash Day is coming - I will be ready! First to get hauled out to the curb is the broken dryer - from 4 months ago...

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  29. Liz @ Naptime DecoratorDecember 22, 2011 at 9:15 AM

    bitten me too!! can't take the clutter - i've been on a mission little by little and hope to get it figured out in 2012 once and for all! Good luck!

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  30. Uh...yeah it's bitten me. Need to decrap before the in-laws come for breakfast on Sunday morning. They already think the kids have enough toys. Possibly true, but they are 17, 9, 6, and 4. One toy does not fit all! Just trying to clean off all surfaces in the kitchen, playroom, our room, den,... You know- small project!

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  31. "New Year De-crapification"? That is awesome! Maybe one of my resolutions for 2012.

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  32. I am totally a piler too! Where does that come from? Were our ancestors ants or something? Anyway, I totally hear you on the organizing bug. Here's to wishing us both luck on our ventures!

    ~Stop Me if You've Heard This One

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  33. Yeah, I have a "storage" room in our basement too! Just like you - I purge and purge, then purge some more, and it still seems to fill back up! lol Since I now have a Mom Cave upstairs, I am slowly but surely moving all of my crafting stuff upstairs then will have more space in the cabinets downstairs to put more stuff!! lol How does this happen??? Merry Christmas!!

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  34. Oh yeah, the crap lying around is making me insane. By nature I am a clean freak and just having all the Christmas crap around for the past month has drove me slightly insane, but truly its the pile in the corner of my bedroom and the mess from our recent (very recent) bathroom remodel that has got me all worked up. I should have it all out of the way by tomorrow night. Take that back, I WILL have it all cleaned up by tomorrow night. Love this post. Wishing you and yours a Very Merry and CLUTTER FREE Christmas!

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  35. I went through those same feelings about a month ago. I did not take pictures sadly but our garage had become our homes dumping ground. When it came time to decorate for Christmas, I was too overwhelmed with the messiness. So there I was moving one thing, two, and then before I knew it I was reorganizing the garage. Something we have done many times before. I have kept it pretty neat so far so we shall see! Merry Christmas

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  36. Decrapification! Love it!! :-) As for us, we're early in our first pregnancy and live in a tiny house, so we need to figure out how to use our space wisely. Namely, this means cleaning out the basement (and, while we're at it, splashing on some Drylok and paint - it may not be finished, but it'll look a heck of a lot more cohesive and nice), putting up some storage solutions, getting our wardrobes down to 2 tiny closets (rather than 3 -- my husband has 2, if you can believe it) and 2 (rather than 3) dressers...and adding more storage to the closets we DO have. :-) There's a ton more to do, but this is our 2012 goal!! Thanks for the inspiration, and a Merry Christmas to you and yours!

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  37. Exchange Club just came to pick up ANOTHER huge pile of stuff - including a 27 in TV.

    They come 6 times a year and I tell you, I do not know how all this stuff multiplies - I purged when I moved 4 years ago and I am STILL sending stuff out the door....and not buying much new...
    Sigh.....

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  38. We moved 6 months ago, and I purged BIG time! However, somehow, someway, more crap is piling up. I'm convinced there are little crap elves that deposit it around your home to test you =) We have a movie room in our basement, and at first I thought we wouldn't really use it (it was already set up as a theatre room when we moved in). I have to tell you, we LOVE it! We don't watch much TV, but movies we love, and watch all the time in our cozy new room =)

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  39. Two "little secrets" I have found that are working wonders for me are. 1. Stress on family not to buy any gifts for our daughter with "small pieces". If they do, our daughter will be playing with them at THEIR house, and THEY can clean up the mess! 2 About once a month, I am going through things in different rooms. Just when I thought I was finished, that I had decluttered down to the bare minimum, I am able to find something else to get rid of. And, I'm also following the 1 in 1 out rule. It is working like a charm!

    Merry Christmas to your family from ours!

    Sue

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  40. I am soooo glad to know that others share their clutter projects!! My basement is in need of just this...but today is layaroundinpj day..tomorrow however I will not be ale to stand it and will start the decluttering/organzing fenzy!!

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  41. The decrapification bug has definitely hit! My craft room, sadly, is my dumping ground and its current state is driving me crazy! I can barely walk in the door and I can hardly wait to get it cleaned out...along with ALL of my closets and drawers. It's one of those things I put off doing, but love doing once I get started.

    Merry Christmas!!

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  42. You're so funny. It's ironic that after making your house a showplace that we all are envious of, you spend every night this week in your unfinished basement. lol It's like having porcelain dolls that you don't play with because they are so beautiful and you don't want to break them, so you play with your old baby doll that has lost it's hair and has crayola markings all over it's face from when you were three. lol Comfort is magnetic. I imagine the basement offers a place where it doesn't matter what gets spilled, or if someone is jumping on the couch...freedom to be messy. That is probably why you leave piles of stuff for so long....you have the freedom to leave it there, and no one will judge you for it. When you finish the basement, just try to keep it a comfortable spot that you won't have many rules and regulations so that it will still be a place where you can chill out and just be you.

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  44. Merry Christmas to you! I love reading your blog and have gotten wonderful ideas, thank you! I too have already started planning on how to decrapify once the holidays are over, my home has been holidayified since the first week of November so its about time. :)

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  45. I have that bug too! It is always the office that gets the piles. Of course when it gets messy everyone call's it "Moms" office...because some how no one wants to claim anything in it! I find it odd that rarely is it actually me that dumps in that room:) A New Year awaiting always gets me in the mood for organizing and a fresh start!

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  46. It has in a bad way! I can't wait for school to start back to I can clean (and I mean CLEAN) out my kids' rooms. They have WAY too much stuff. I think so much so that their little minds are overloaded when they go to their rooms to play, and don't know what to play with. I'm going to do a MAJOR downsizing for them so they can enjoy their toys and actually play with them. It's the least I can do, really. ;)

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  47. Right there withya sista! We have a basement in desperate need of an OVER HAUL! That's the plan for the new year!! Can't wait! Great Blog btw!!! Thanks!!

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  48. I'm not a piler but I am itching to tackle my closet after Christmas this year. I've lost some weight this year - yay! Which really helps me see which ones of all of those "this will fit again someday" clothes are never gonna fit again : ) I think I will really enjoy having a closet full of pieces that I actually like to wear.
    ryanres1

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  49. I would love to tackle the mess that is my bedroom closet and get some really good organization going on in there. any good tips on organizing shoes and clothes?

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  50. Yes...I am SO ready to declutter/decrapify as you call it! My garage is the worst right now with boxes and random projects and items that need to go to goodwill. ...I'm hosting a household swap in January, but part of me just wants everything OUT OUT OUT, right now!!! ;-) At least I can close the door, but I'm ready for more simplicity!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family!!! ...Enjoy the time together with family! I enjoy you blog so much.

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  51. Oh that word decraptification alone makes me laugh because I can so relate and understand!!

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  52. You trip me out. I am sooo like that too. I am home on break and keep thinking of the things I need to do like go through my kids closets b/c they are outgrowing everything. I am constantly going thru piles too. I call it weeding!

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  53. Good for you! Now want to come do my basement? ; ) Merry Christmas to you and the fam, Sarah! xo

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  54. Good job, this is a great time of year to de-clutter and purge. Your basement may be "unfinished" but it looks plenty cozy to me!--Brett from I Dream of France

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  55. Sarah,

    It makes me soooo happy when you post your "piles o' junk" on your blog. LOL Sooo, I'm not the only one. :) I am definitely in the mood to start decrapifying my storage room in the basement. It is FULL! I have to rearrange and get rid of some stuff, no time now though until after Christmas. Merry Christmas everyone!

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  56. one word: closets. we have no storage because we live in an apartment... with no basement. so all our crap collects in closets. pretty soon you can't open or close them. i hate closets.

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  57. I know what you mean! I can't say I'm as brave as you to post pictures of my house in the state that it's in yet... I'll get there, and trust me there is a PILE of stuff growing! :)
    My husband and I managed to renovate our basement this past year and started renting it out. You can check pictures of it out on my blog :)
    Aside from thoughts of basements dancing around your head this Christmas, I hope you and your family have a great one!
    -Jane @ urbanejane.com

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  58. http://creatingahouseofgrace.blogspot.com/2011/12/basement-updates.html

    Bonnie from house of grace seems to have a similar basement to yours and she is in the process of finishing hers! :) She has some neat ideas, I love it! :) Erin

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  59. We have a finished basement now, and I never NEVER use it. It houses a bunch of junk and my sewing machine, but, for as much as I wanted a house with a finished basement, I find the area depressing to be in, and just haven't figured out what I want to do with it for the long term.

    My parents, however, had an unfinished basement while I was growing up and I LOVED hanging out down there. It was dank and cluttered, but I had some of the best times down there. All the scraps of area rug and remnants and old sofas. Ahhhhhhhhh. Memories.

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  60. Ya know, God always gives each of us something that we need to master during our life times. Some people, it may be piano, maybe our finances, some people organization! I think it is the one thing that generally comes back at ya. Organization is my nemesis too. Good luck!

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  61. www.delightfuleclecticabode.comDecember 24, 2011 at 8:58 AM

    Hi Sarah,

    I do have a finished basement. It's my husbands "man cave" I happen to like it down there too so it's the place where I visit once in a while to do scrapbooking (which was a tangent that didn't last long). I took some photos the other day because I thought it might be nice to do a posting on basements and then I headed over here today and wow, you're talking about basements!

    Even though half my basement is finished, it still ends up being a catch-all for boxes, junk etc. I am very grateful for this space because it's where we do most of our entertaining when it's cold or rainy outside.

    I had to laugh when I saw your husband with the keyboard on his lap! I think you will love a finished basement!

    I love your home and love your blog. I'm a newbie and don't know how to do those linky parties what about having a basement link party? I'd join!

    Have a wonderful Christmas!

    ~Sandy

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  62. Merry Christmas my friend.I hope your holiday is as sweet as you are xo

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  63. I can so relate to this! I have declared 2012 the Year of Decrapification. We have boxes that we haven't touched since we moved in (2.5 years ago), stuff I haven't been able to find since we moved in (probably related to those boxes), a spare room strewn with a half finished closet cleanout (for the last 9 months...), and a bunch of stuff we received when my grandmother sold her house that I've yet to finish sorting.

    I love having beautiful, meaningful things. Everything else needs to GO. : )

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  64. I have been bit by the bug. I am so ready to take down the decorations and put things away. I have decide to hire a housekeeper next year. I need help keeping up. Today on Christmas Eve I took things to the consignment store.

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  65. Its really beautiful. I really like the way the room is decorated. Its well organized.
    Muebles Vitoria

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  66. I have just closed the door on our "basement" which is actually the room that was the babies bedroom. Since the baby grew up and moved into a bigger bedroom, that spare room has attracted piles of stuff like a mega magnet. This evening I couldnt face looking at the pile any longer so I closed the door and walked away. You have just inspired me to work on it.....damn you! ;)

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  67. This post totally motivates me to finally tackle the clutter in my closet; Thanks!

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