Apartment Therapy Progress Report: Week 1

I'm feeling very motivated and proud of myself. Week 1 was a success, and I managed to complete all of the tasks assigned. I just bought the flowers last night, but I hadn't been to the store all week (unusual for me), and I didn't want to make a special trip. All of the floors were vacuumed at least once, and most got it at least twice due to German Shepherd tumbleweeds. There's no such thing as shedding season with that dog, it's just a year-round thing. I already use earth-friendly cleaning supplies, but I bought a fresh stock of some of the things I've been running low on. I also asked Maggie at 1901 House for a recipe for homemade laundry detergent. I have a large box for Goodwill that I will drop off tonight after work. Sitting for 10 minutes in a part of my home I don't usually sit in was difficult. Our house isn't that big, and I use it all nearly every day. Instead, I substituted a walkthrough of the entire house, taking time to study each room and figuring out what its strengths and weaknesses are. I also brainstormed for improvements. Here's what I came up with, starting at the bottom.

Basement storage/utility room
  1. not enough shelves
  2. too many boxes of furnishings and other items that are not ever used
  3. one full wall of wasted storage space
  4. kitty litter out in the open
  5. items from previous owners must go (paint cans galore)!
  6. love the high ceilings
  7. walls and floors in good condition
  8. nook under stairs perfect for additional shelving
  9. lots of light for a basement

Basement family room

  1. cluttered!
  2. not enough storage for Shayne's electronics projects
  3. need shelving or storage solution for DVDs and CDs
  4. needs new carpet
  5. excercise machine takes up lots of space and is rarely used


  1. need recycling/trash area to be better organized
  2. junk accumulates on top of microwave
  3. good counter space
  4. probably the most organized room in the house

Dining room

  1. "Drop Zone" for mail, shoes, uniform items and work supplies
  2. cluttered by living room furniture and furnishings
  3. needs curtains
  4. HATE the wall color - repaint ASAP as a temporary fix
  5. excellent light

Laundry room/bathroom

  1. Small and cold (or hot in summer)
  2. lots of storage, but unorganized and poorly utilized
  3. need solution for dog food bags
  4. need curtains

Living room

  1. needs to be finished!
  2. love the wall colors
  3. beautiful wood floors
  4. lots of natural light


  1. least favorite room in the house
  2. need new cushion for papasan chair or bring in futon to use for guests
  3. new bookcase/armoire for books, magazines, and office supplies
  4. wallpaper MUST GO!


  1. need headboard and coordinating furniture
  2. new fan/light fixture
  3. drab wall color (very light sage/tan/gray) that I hate
  4. built-in shelves give extra storage
  5. needs more decoration to feel cozy

Spare bedroom

  1. catch-all room with lots of clutter
  2. used as ironing center
  3. AWFUL wall color (bright yellow with green trim)
  4. might work well as a utility room


  1. needs ventilation fan
  2. tons of storage
  3. small but organized

I was surprised to find that only 1 thing in the house needs repair (the furnace ignition works sporadically), and I found 2 light bulbs that are burned out.

I've been motivated this week to start organizing. I bought a magazine file to keep in the bathroom, since both of us usually take something to read while we take baths or if we plan on spending a little time in there. There was a small pile that moved between the floor and the counter, and it's now neat and orderly. I don't really like having reading material in there, but since it ended up there anyways, I might as well make it look as nice as I can! I also cleaned and organized my nightstand, which was pretty scary. Shayne and I are both making an effort to pick up after ourselves and not leave anything laying around that shouldn't be. Training ourselves to new habits will take some time, but I'm so sick of the clutter...

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