It’s week # 10 in Org Junkie’s 52 Weeks of Organizing challenge. This week Org Junkie’s topic is “Tips for Cluttered Surfaces.” As always, her tips are fabulous. Go have a look-see when you get a chance.

Cluttered surfaces are definitely a big problem for me. Here’s one of my worst hot spots: the kitchen island. Oy vay!

Kitchen island "hot spot," earlier today.

Kitchen island "hot spot," one month ago.

Kitchen island "hot spot," three years ago.

This spot is truly a black hole. The minute I get it cleared off, people start piling stuff back up on it… like it has a mysterious gravitational pull.

Clearly we need a better system, but that will have to be a project for another week. First I have to do some research, and wouldn’t you know it, Org Junkie has all kinds of ideas for how to create a command center and get your paper piles off the counter! Sweet! I love that woman.

I did spend some time today clearing this spot and going through the mound of paper. Amazing what you can find under all that CRAP!

Ooops! Too bad this was at the BOTTOM of the pile. Looks like Bucket Head is learning to count with Cheerios at preschool.

It’s a miracle we don’t have bugs. Also surprising that Ike (the devil dog) didn’t find that Cheerio art and wolf it down. He was probably too busy noshing in the litter box.

So that is my next mission, creating a command center. A few feet away from that cluttered kitchen island is a built in desk that is also always mounded with CRAP. It would be the perfect place for a command center! Wanna see it? You know you do. Doesn’t looking at all my messiness make you feel SO much better about your own house?

Location of my future Command Center!

Another view... that's Nature Boy on his laptop.

You are welcome; I’m happy to help boost your self esteem at my expense. Stay tuned for the “after” pics when I have my spiffy new Command Center up and running… one of these days.

It’s been a rough week, what with Mardi Gras, and my hangover on Ash Wednesday, and my subsequent alcohol withdrawal because of Lent. But in spite of all that, there is one thing I accomplished this week that I’m dying to share with you.

This week I was inspired by two of my new Internet friends, Martha and Megan.

Martha is one of my separated-at-birth-sisters in the 52 Weeks Challenge. She put up a photo recently in a post about cleaning up her desk in which I noticed not one, but TWO decorative signs extolling the virtues of simplifying.

Oh shite, I thought to myself. I have one of those:

What is this, a Cracker Barrel?

And then I thought about Megan. She is on a quest to simplify her life by getting rid of something from her house everyday for a year. I’ve been stalking her for a week now, and let me tell you, she is fearless. She’s tossing things left and right, and not even horrible things. In other words, she is making some ruthless decisions about what gets to stay and what has to go. It’s a good thing I don’t live in her neighborhood, because I would gladly take most of her cast-offs, they are that good.

But anyhoo, I started eyeballing that “SIMPLIFY” sign and thinking, you know… I don’t really like that thing. I bought it a few years ago thinking it would help to inspire me on my quest for a clutter-free home. It obviously hasn’t helped. And since I don’t love it, it is clutter, and it has got to go! Buh-bye!

Sometimes LESS really is MORE!

Ahhhh. That is so much better! Isn’t it?

You probably have no idea how hard this was for me. We’re talkin’ borderline hoarder here, people. But it is like a switch has suddenly been flipped and I can finally see the light!

So thank you, Org Junkie, for the continued guidance; and thank you, Martha and Megan, for inspiring me to let go of that not-so-simple SIMPLIFY sign. I am hopeful this is just the start of a lifetime of letting go.

with gratitude and optimism,

-Iris

PS: if you are just joining us and want to get caught up on all of my previous 52 Weeks projects, click here.

© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris.