Friday, 27 January 2017

Operation Musical Chairs: I'm not taking anything to my new house that I don't want like or need

Afternoon. You may remember from last year that I found a website called Appartment Therapy who do a January Cure - essentially 20 daily tasks to help get your home under control.

I achieved quite a lot, not so much in January, as when I was able to over the year. Things like getting curtain rails and curtains up, seating that's storage in the downstairs loo, a cat flap in the shed, fake plants instead of killing real ones and also lampshades for the pendant lights. I even sorted loads of things out to be binned, recycled, to go to the Charity Shop and finally, to be sold on Ebay. I've got that original list I did last year somewhere and as I go along this year, I'll compare it to what I thought needed doing, to what was actually done.

So mostly last year it was fixtures and fittings type stuff. This year though, I'm drowning in paper and other 'stuff'. Also I got a mobility scooter and went trundling far too often, caused myself a minor relapse (increase in symptoms) and also changed care companies, so January's been more of a recuperation month than actually doing anything from the January Cure. Nevertheless, the carers have been hugely encouraging and I now have newly clean and lined and tidied kitchen cupboard interiors. Yay them!

Also this year, the family are moving to Lincolnshire (from Northumberland) this will be in stages and involve both the parentals and I being in temporary (but suitable) accomodation before ending up in our (hopefully) forever homes.

Mum is far more organised and dedicated than me at tidying up, and also, doesn't procrastinate so much. So she has already in the couple of years she's been in her house, decluttered and pared back and pretty much only has things she likes, needs and uses in her house. And today it went on the market online. HERE

 So mum's house, in it's state of glorious order and style is what I'm aiming for. I think my house has the bones of it, but those are covered in layers and layers of stuff, so time to really crack on with doing something about the stuff I don't want or need or even like.

The following pictures are my starting point today - Christmas is still happening as well as a load of family paperwork for taxes, and I never got around to Ebaying the stuff I decluttered last year.

Anyway, as a record, my house in the full technicolour but possibly not very good focus of it's present shambles.


My front door goes straight into the kitchen. The developers kindly didn't put a wall between the kitchen & hallway, so my mobility scooter and rollator have somewhere to live.

Per the January Cure Task 18: Landing Strip - I have keys up on hooks by the door, and I have a waste bin and a recycling bin so I can deal with post when sitting at the bottom of the stairs, I have a place for shoes under the rollator by the door, and I also have mop and broom etc hanging up in the tiny wall space between WC door and front door. I also have a two section wire basket that holds the internet router, disposable shoe covers for people who don't want to take their shoes off, and the extension cord to keep all that tidy by the front door. It's not very pretty, but it's the best I can do and above all it works!

But what I don't have is
1. The proper doormat cut to fit in the matwell. Because the developers need to come look at the door and fix it. And anyway the mat needs cutting to fit, so whilst I own the mat, there doesn't seem much point in cutting it to fit if I'm moving soon, might as well take it with me to use in my new house.
2. Portable rubber ramps for getting in and out of the doorway more easily. I just need to buy these! One for each side of the door.
3. Proper bathroom flooring upstairs so the cat litter tray lives down here at present. In the way.
4. A permanent home for the Care Agency file, currently it lives on the rollator. In the way.
5. I am going to change the paper image in the window for Valentine's Day in February, but I do so love the image that's already up. Maybe I'll put it in one of the other windows and keep it....

Yes, it does look like a primary school. Sigh. The labels on the cupboards are to make it easier for me & the carers to be in different rooms, but still be able to say where things live.  I was intending to get the back wall wallpapered. I even own the wallpaper, but once I realised I'd be moving I decided to wait and use the paper in my new house. Annoying because I was just about to say yes to the decorators. Sigh. But since last year I have got a laundry basket that works as a stool by the washing machine and a mat for under the mobility scooter to catch any drips/ fallen leaves that it tracks in.

January Cure Day 10 was cleaning the kitchen inside & out. The carers have cleaned and lined each shelf with paper in all the cupboards, and cleaned the fridge.

To be done:
1. Concentrate on eating the older food in the cupboards and only having enough food that it fits in the cupboards and doesn't spill over onto the tops or next to the microwave.
2. Find a way of having the appliances where I can handle them, but where they aren't too untidy. I can't lift them out of a cupboard and back again, so they do have to live on the worksurfaces.
3. Tops of the cupboards need cleaning and the 3 purple boxes need sorting and disposing, I've not used anything from them since I moved in.
4. Once the mobility scooter goes off for a service (I broke it by demanding steep hill climbing in super cold weather. oops), the carers are going to deep clean the kitchen floor.


Last year I acquired a Bench for the WC that has storage underneath. This gives me somewhere to keep all the cat food and also their medicines and a place to actually put food in dishes with the right meds etc. It also gives me somewhere to sit to do that and also to use the sink. I also bought a white caddy for the cleaning materials to live in.

To Do:
1. Actual flooring. Currently it's the original concrete with a mat on. Can't do this until upstairs bathroom is sorted.
2. Reinstall the Command Strip Hook for the cleaning cloth on the wall or side of the loo. Yes an embarrassment of command strips (per a comment on this year's January Cure that will live with me forever) is on hand to acheive this.
3. Clean the paintwork of splodges of cat meds & food etc. I have trouble opening the sachets. Maybe I need a pair of scissors in there?
4. Hang a hook for the torch (but first retrieve the torch from dad, must remember to ask for it back!)
5. Generally tidy up and clear each drawer and shelf to be sure that I do actually want need or like everything in that room.
6. If I was not moving house, I'd get frames for the posters. But that's for the new house.


Oh good grief where to start! Yes Christmas is still out, but is going to be put away this week (it's only been up a month), the big pile of paperwork on the table can be sorted and put away because it's tax stuff and that's all been done now, and that pile behind the blue chair - is stuff for Ebay from when mum & I cleared the bookcases of books I'll never read (can't hold them up anymore) so my papercrafting supplies could go in there.

To do:
1. Tidy up!
2. Tidy up everything!
3. Ebay stuff.
4. Look in all storage for things I don't want or need to make space for things that are homeless.
5. Consider rearranging the furniture, cos I'm not sure it works very well.


Hmmm. See that pile of boxes on the left topped with an orange plastic bag - that's last year's Outbox from upstairs. Day 20 this year (ie today) is to get rid of the Outbox contents. It needs Ebaying. I need to do this.


I need to get to grips with having a wall of storage full of clothes and fabric I don't use, and everything I do use being dumped on the two chairs in here. And the bedside table needs a rethink. And the linings need sewing back to the curtains.


Is in reasonable nick I think, bit untidy but it's things I use daily that I need within reach.  The most irritating issue is the developers not sending someone around to fix the slight shower leak. So, no flooring in here yet. I need to chase that up.


What can I say? The floor is clear? Sort of... Basically, it's empty boxes on top of the rather nice georgian chest of drawers, for Ebay and for moving, the table is a dumping ground, the filing hasn't been done for a couple of years. Frankly it's a disaster! And no better on the other side of the room that you can't see because Blogger won't load that photo.

So. Am I feeling overwhelmed? No I'm not. Because on Day 2 of the Cure - you make a list of all the trouble spots in your house. And then you pick a couple of things 3-5 from that list to make your project for the Cure.  Which I've done.  And I'm going to concentrate on licking the Living Room into shape AND chasing the Developer first. Then we go from there. Eating my elephant a bite at a time.

This is the list of January Cure Tasks:
1. Declutter a drawer
2. Make a trouble spot list and pick 3-5 things to concentrate on
3. Sort out Pantry/Food Cupboards
4. Create an OutBox and put something in it.
5. Clean the floors
6. Sit in a room for 10 mins and just look at it with fresh eyes. What you like/ what to change.
7. Spend 30mins cleaning ONE area
8. Have an evening Offline. No internet. Go analogue - radio, books, friends
9. Clear a closet
10. Clean the Kitchen inside & out
11. Have some friends round (or plan it for when the Cure is done)
12. Clear out Bathroom Storage and medicine cabinets
13. Do your own Project (my living room for me)
14. Reset your room. Take away and store decorations/ accessories as though you would sell the place.
15. Muck out your bedroom - change the sheets, clean it, tidy it, put stuff away.
16. Catchup with what you've not yet done, or get ahead with things planned for the future.
17. Clean the bathroom
18. Create a Landing Strip in your entrance. Places to put stuff or deal with it, to reduce what comes into your house and then needs taking out again.
19. Do a three minute tidy up
20. Clear the Outbox.

Each weekend you are also to buy yourself some flowers or fruit etc. Something to make you feel cheerful.

I'm not going to do them order. But I will eventually cover all these tasks (some are already done or part started). Wish me well!


  1. I am moving house and dont want to take moths with me. Did yur moving method work? I cannot search your blogs ro see if yu posted about that. Please contact me at Thank you!

    1. Hi yes the moth method worked. it's this blog post.


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