Why the garage?
That is the question I asked myself many, many . . . many times between the moment when I blurted out that I would tackle the garage for this Spring Spruce Up party, and the time when I actually started working on it.
If you’re a regular reader, you know that decluttering is something I do all the time. Not because I’m a neat-freak, but because I have soooooo . . . much . . . clutter. I’ve come a long way since the moment of desperation in which I started this blog, but since things were so bad, I’m still far from done.
But the garage/storage space is its own animal.
A challenge like no others I’ve faced in this deslobification process.
Even though I was irritated with myself for choosing it, I was also glad. It’s been bugging me for several months now. Not that it had suddenly gotten out of control in those months, but I think that as the rest of the house improved, this untouched disaster area became more and more of an eyesore.
I know that garages are a challenge for everyone, even for normal people. Take that fact and add to it that I am a real-life slob . . . and it seems impossible.
Now let me just say for a moment, that in many ways I was proud of it. I could park a 1997 Suburban in that bad boy. Those things ain’t tiny.
And really, being able to park in the garage was a huge accomplishment.
But opening doors? Getting out? Getting out without tripping over something? Finding ANYthing out there?
Now that’s just crazy talk.
In case the far-off-pic leaves you in doubt that it was really that bad . . . let me show some close-ups.
The right side:
The left side:
Good luck finding that-thing-I-just-know-has-to-be-out-here in that mess.
Motivated by this post series and by the fact that our sweet elderly neighbors saw us in the driveway a few weeks ago, NOT doing anything that remotely looked like getting ready for a garage sale . . . and asked with an unmistakable note of hope in their voices if we were getting ready for a garage sale . . . I geared up for the much-dreaded task.
First step . . . haul out the things that have been waiting to be hauled out for . . . ummm . . . a while. I did this several weeks ago, when I still had absolutely no faith that this post series would be titled anything other than “Hey, Something’s Better Than Nothing, Right?”
I started on this pile of mostly-decluttered-items. I say “mostly decluttered” . . . because over time the decluttered items naturally mixed in with things that weren’t headed for the donation place.
After cleaning out the back of my Suburban (no easy task in itself), convincing myself that the donation place was probably already closed, checking online to find out that it was still open, realizing that I was wearing pajama pants . . .
changing those pants while grumbling, loading up the back of the Suburban, and hauling it all away . . .
I was thrilled to see the back of the Suburban looking like this:
But the garage . . . looked pretty much the same.
For a while (as in a few weeks), . . . I pretty much gave up. I decided to be content with the fact that the pile was smaller.
But then, last week, the weather was beautiful. And beautiful weather meant it was time to give it another go. The garage lends itself so well to weather-related-excuses. Too hot in the summer, too cold in the winter, but last week was just right.
Tomorrow, I’ll share the details of when real progress started happening.
OK, this post is supposed to also include tips and advice. So here goes. Like I often have to tell myself during my numerous overwhelming decluttering projects, when it comes to a no-man’s-land-dumping-ground like your garage or storage space . . . do the easy stuff first.
My garage was one big problem area. It was almost impossible to know where to start. So I started with what was easiest. Getting the things that had already been deemed expendable . . . out of there. The difficult, decision-making part was already done. I just had to get up the gumption to load it all (along with my three kids) into the car and get going.
Why it seems so difficult to do that . . . I don’t know.
Be sure to check out the organizing projects of the other Spring Spruce Up bloggers:
Sprucing Up the Laundry Room | Mama’s Laundry Talk
Sprucing Up the School Room | Homegrown Mom
Sprucing Up the Craft Room | Many Little Blessings
Sprucing Up the Bathroom | Feels Like Home
Sprucing Up the Playroom | …Life’s About a Dream
Sprucing Up the Garage/Storage Space | A Slob Comes Clean
Sprucing Up the Master Bedroom | Raising Arrows
Sprucing Up Your Homeschool | Jimmie’s Collage
Sprucing Up the Kitchen | So Happy Together
Sprucing Up the Garden | An Oregon Cottage
Sprucing Up the Backyard | Successful Homeschooling
And we’ll be hosting a group linky on Thursday where you can share your own Spring Spruce Up blog post. If you link up here, your link will show up on all of the Spruce Up bloggers’ sites!