I'm sure many of you out there make New Year's resolutions. I'm sure there are just as many of you out there that don't. Although I usually don't even think about making a resolution, there is something about January that feels like a fresh start. I often let the month go by without doing anything of significance, but it just so happened that I started of the month okay this time.
I was led to the January Cure project on the Apartment Therapy website through Facebook. Basically, the January Cure was a day-by-day calendar that led you through a little facelift for your home. I started by taking a walk through my house and listing all the things I wanted to do in each room. This process covered everything, from de-cluttering a closet to painting the walls in a room. My list was long, but I have been amazed to discover that I have crossed a lot of my list merely by knowing what needed to be done! I had a ton of lightbulbs that had burned out and by making a list of what I needed, I only needed to take one trip to the store to buy them all.
Other "assignments" for the Cure were buying flowers each weekend, deep cleaning your floors, and framing a picture that you have been meaning to hang. I mean, this stuff isn't hard, it just doesn't always get done. That's why I liked having assignments.
The goal of the month was to complete ONE of the projects on your list. I chose to re-organize my kitchen cart. I have had this plain, wooden, Ikea kitchen cart for about 5 years now. I bought it when I lived in an apartment that had approximately 8 inches of counter space. My grandma bought it for me and I have mentally thanked her A MILLION times. Since I moved out of that apartment, it has been more of a "catch all" than kitchen cart and has become a real mess. I mean a REAL MESS. Watch out. The following photos might be disturbing.
This photo shows the cart in its "before" state. The top held mail, Christmas cards, bills, books, keys, pens, and stacks and stacks of papers with no home.
The center rack held napkins, dish towels, and table cloths--none of which belonged there.
The bottom rack held a bunch of items that get little to no use. CDs, travel guides, phone books, and (strangely) our wedding guest book. Isn't it gross?
A close-up of the clutter. The flat files on top were the worst for me. It took me one evening just to sort through them. Once I did, though, things moved much more quickly. (Although I have to admit, this project still took me a week!)
This photo shows the finished product. We got rid of the flat files because they only served as a temptation to stack things. One of the catch-all bowls was removed because we found homes for a lot of things.
We made a library book pile on the second shelf to catch the books and media that I always bring home from work. The baskets now hold our respective winter gear and they are working WONDERFULLY! We used to have all of our winter gear mixed in only one of these baskets. You can only imagine the overflow. Now, we each take care of our own things and more specialized hats and gloves are in the coat closet.
The bottom shelf still has magazines, but I added an old library file to hold greeting cards and letters that I want to keep.
We kept this small metal organizer to hold notepads, address labels, and coupons. NOTHING ELSE! I think the flowers add a touch of freshness!
Here is a close-up of the baskets. The file in the middle holds paid bills and pay stubs.
If any shelf still needs work, it's this one, but I am so happy that my little library file fit here. It had been floating around the house for ages and i think this is a perfect spot for it.
You would not believe how great it felt to finish this task! I am going to attempt my own February Cure just to keep the momentum going. If you missed the month of January, join me!