Decluttering Our Entertainment Stand

We took our next step toward minimalism this week. We decided it was time to clean out and off our entertainment center. It has 2 shelves and 2 cabinets with a shelf inside each one. The large top was covered! Not only was our television there but so were many things that didn’t really belong. We had a video game console and set of small speakers on top that simply needed to go onto one of the shelves. We had set them there because we didn’t want to run the cords then. They have been there for a year because once they were there we stopped thinking about it. There were also DVD and game cases that weren’t put away because the cabinets were so full of stuff that they were hard to put away. Papers that had been left there over time. We really had become clutter blind.

I started by cleaning off the top of the stand. Going through every item to decide if we still needed/wanted it. If the answer was yes, then I had to decide if it belongs in this area or elsewhere. I assigned four categories: Keep in this area, Keep in another area, Donate/Sell, and Trash. Next, I cleared off the shelves and set up our most used/loved electronics. The top shelf now holds a PlayStation, a camera docking station, and a set of 2 small speakers that I connect to my phone while cleaning. The bottom shelf now holds our cable/DVR box and a Wii.

The cabinets were stuffed full of DVDs, video games, cords, controllers, CDs, and random junk. I was a little surprised by how much stuff I pulled out! Here’s a picture taken during the process.

I really wish I would have taken a before shot but I forgot. The top shelf of the left cabinet is home to a DVD storage binder that holds kids/family movies and another full of CDs that my husband is not ready to part with. I am currently debating on buying another of these to hold the remainder of the DVDs, games, and CDs that we want to keep. On one hand they take up less space than the individual cases but I think that they allow us to feel it is acceptable to keep more because it takes up less space. I also decided to keep our daughter’s memory books on this shelf. I have been trying to find a place to keep these that they will be safe but that we have easy access to them. I will do a separate post about these books sometime soon. They are amazing! The bottom shelf of the left cabinet houses my daughter’s headphones and the cords that we needed to keep that are not in daily use. The top shelf of the right cabinet now contains DVD’s and a couple of video games. The bottom shelf is home to video games and controllers.

This area is so much easier for us to use now. We got rid of 2 boxes of stuff not including trash. A ton of this was DVDs and TV series that we no longer watch. It looks so much nicer! It gives me the boost to start working on decluttering and minimizing other areas of our home.

Here’s the finished product:

Love The New House!

We did indeed close on Friday! We spent Friday night cleaning. We picked up some Chinese take-out and had a “picnic” on our new living room floor. We were super excited to start making memories right away.

Saturday we moved our things in. We have spent the rest of the week slowly unpacking and getting organized. We still have a very long way to go but we have no complaints. We love the place. We are so happy to finally be here! Everything we went through when buying this place has made us even more thankful to be here!

We have lived in a third floor walk-up without so much as a deck since Isabella was 2 months old. She is adjusting to having a backyard quickly and very happily, I might add! It is fenced in with a nice little wooden play set for her to play on. Ivy’s biggest concern is making new friends in the neighborhood. I hope she meets some good friends her age soon.

Warning: Buying a House May Make You Crazy!!!

So I have not had a chance to post in a while and wanted to fill all of you in on the craziness that is currently my life. We were supposed to close on our house on March 29th. We were unaware that the house was a short sale when we went to see it and fell in love with it. We knew this was “the house” the minute we walked in. We all love it! Sadly, the process of buying it is driving us all insane! We were told that the loan would take a little extra time so hence the 45 day close instead of the normal 30. The 45 day mark came and went. There was an issue with the house not being in the owner’s name long enough and requiring an additional appraisal. The minute I found out about the issues and the fact that we were not likely to close on time I asked for an extension on our current lease. Unfortunately they had already rented our apartment.

In the blink of an eye we were homeless…well homeless might sound a bit extreme…but it’s pretty much true. We found a storage bin for all our stuff. My dad was gracious enough to allow us to stay in his spare bedroom and on his couch until we are able to close. It’s a very awkward situation. He is totally accepting of us staying with him for a week or two. In all honestly I don’t think he would care if we stayed forever. However, I mind. It feels like our entire lives have been turned upside down! We are a very scheduled and organized family. Our lives have been in chaos for a week now. The four of us living out of bags, dealing with allergies, trying to make the kids feel as normal as possible, and attempting not to lose our minds.

Everybody thinks of buying a house as one of the high points in life. It’s a dream that many of us have turned over in our minds so many times that we have shined it to near perfection. Our experience has been quite a slap in the face; shocking and a bit painful. When everything is done and we are in our new home I know that all the craziness will be worth it but it is still hard to cope with right now.

We re-contracted to be closed by April 15th. We are hoping to get it done before that. As of our last update we are looking to close on Tuesday (9th). There was an e-mail on Friday(5th) that said the underwriters would be done reviewing the paperwork in 36 hours. I am hoping to get a phone call with some great news soon. I’ll keep you updated as I am able.

We’re buying a House!

With a little budgeting and belt-tightening we realized that we could afford a house payment. As many of you know that was a huge goal for this year. We are finally ready to settle down for a while. We need more room for the kids to run and play. We have been looking for a place. We found the perfect house and put a bid in on it yesterday. This morning we got a call from the realtor saying that there were multiple offers and we should decide what our best offer was. We told her and she said she’d let us know soon. We found out this evening that our second bid was accepted. With that the house buying process has begun! Next up is contract completion and home inspection.