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Thursday, December 8, 2016

The Truth: A REAL LIFE Home Tour

During a time of beautiful Christmas home tours and perfectly staged spaces I feel the need to share something I struggle with on a daily basis, clutter.  I may post pretty pictures on my blog, but by no means is that a representation of the rest of my home.  You see, I don't have it all together.  Actually, I am far from having it all together.  My house is a mess, I am about 5 loads of laundry behind and I can't remember the last time I changed my sheets.  It's a good day if my kids are wearing matching socks, you can see the bottom of the kitchen sink and the dog hair has been vacuumed from the floor. There are few things I make priorities for each and every day and doing laundry and cleaning dishes do not make the cut.  My kids will be bathed, fed, wearing clean clothes, their hair and teeth will be brushed and homework complete.  Everything else gets put on the back burner, which leads to a less than stellar home.

Being a wife, mother of two and full time employee all while running a blog allows little time for the day to day tasks of running a home.  My morning consists of getting the kid's up, fed and out the door for school.  Then it's my turn to get ready for work.  As soon as I walk in the door from work I immediately have to start dinner, get the kids bathed do homework and get them ready for bed.  Most people would probably clean the house or tidy up during this time, but not me.  I spend 4 hours each and every night doing blog work with minimal breaks to throw in a load of laundry or empty the dishwasher.  Don't get me wrong, I love blogging and every other aspect of my life, but balancing priorities and juggling it all is hard, really hard.
REAL LIFE entryway Christmas home tour

Often times I look around my home and wonder how it got this way.  How is there a random pile in almost every room of our home?

Our entryway stays fairly tidy except for the occasional Lincoln logs or Lego's laying in the middle of the floor, but the rest of the home, well that's a different story.

Real Life living room Christmas tour
There sits two baskets of laundry and a pile of mismatch socks that have been there since Saturday.   The other day I counted 19 different types of socks and NO MATCHES, 19!!!  How does that even happen?

You wanna see what's on the other side of the ottoman?
Messy living room home tour
That would be a pile of toys that has been sitting there ever since we put up our tree.

Speaking of our tree, it's definetely not magazine worthy by any means.   The top branch that holds the star broke off and it's filled with wonderful memories of our family and handmade ornaments our kids made instead of perfectly styled ribbon and coordinating ornaments.

You see that bright orange smiley face star?  That would be a prize that Owen won from a claw machine that he just had to have on the tree.  It makes him happy so there it sits, right near the top of the tree.
Real life, unstyled Christmas tree
Our dining  room isn't much better.
Real life Dining room Christmas home tour
There the Christmas boxes still sit and my computer since my office is in complete disarray.
Real life messy office
In my defense (why do I feel the need to explain?) most of the items in the corner are Christmas gifts that need to be wrapped.  The other items on the floor and on my desk are decor items that I recently swapped out for Christmas decor.  For some reason I pile everything in my office instead of putting them away.

The mudroom looks pretty good.  Give it a few hours and it will be a completely different story.
Real life mudroom
Are you ready to see the kid's bedrooms?

I present to you Owen's decorated room.
Real life, messy kids room
This is what happens when an eight and six year old sneak off with leftover Christmas lights.  It makes them happy so there they hang.  Oh and look, there's the lost shoe!
Real life messy kids room
I have realized that I am far more stressed and irritable when my home is in disarray.   Starting off my morning with a sink full of dishes or coming home from a long day of work to an unorganized home does nothing to boost my mood.

I'm sharing this post not only to show that what you see on the outside is not always as it appears on the inside, but to hold myself accountable.  Starting today, I'm going to work on one room at a time and get my house in order.

What's my plan of attack?

-As I work through one room at a time I'm going to find a place for everything and really assess what we have in our home.  If it's something we no longer use or need it will get donated.  Less stuff means less clutter and a happier home.
- School papers and mail will get looked at right away and put in the kid's boxes if needed or thrown away.   No more piles on the kitchen counter!
-As soon as I take laundry out of the dryer it will get folded and put away.  No more laundry baskets sitting in our living room.
- The kitchen sink will be emptied every night in an effort to have a less stressful morning.
- My office will no longer be a drop zone for project materials.  I'm going to make every effort to keep it a space for me to work and be inspired.

If you struggle with clutter and piles you are not alone.  No one is perfect and by no means do I want you to come to this blog thinking I have it all together :)

Would you like to comment?

  1. What a great post! Perfection seems to be so key in the blog world and it is nice to see...normality! Can I giggle because you typed asses instead of assess in the last few sentences.. makes the article even better. :)

  2. You're brave and real! I love that! And it's a huge part of why I come back and actually READ your posts! A laundry tip, I used to have the same issues and I hated it😢 I made one real change. When I open the dryer door I fold the laundry as I take it out and I place the folded laundry in each persons stack on top of the washing machine! Yes, that's correct on top of the washing machine lid (I have a top load) so before I can even put the wet clothes in the dryer I must take care of the clean folded laundry 😊. I call both boys to put away their laundry in their closets or drawers etc. Yours are old enough if they know where to put it all. I set my husband's on his office chair, he's great about putting his away and I put mine away most of the time. Lol sometimes I am guilty of dresser top stacking😆. If there are hanging clothes in the load I place them over the door of the dryer until I'm done folding and then I hang all and put on the door rack each persons together so they can take as they pass by. If the boys are not around and I need the laundry off the top of the washer I put them in a stack in their spot on the kitchen table. Therefore they need to be removed before the next meal. I hope you are inspired to concur your laundry too, it really does help!

    I used to always be behind on the laundry too, I started getting up and throwing in a load every morning while I brush my teeth etc. I comeback to put it in the dryer when I can but if I haven't done it by dinner I do it then when I have time between stirring or something is in the oven baking etc. Getting in the habit of doing at least one load of laundry everyday lightens the burden of overwhelming piles and no clean clothes!

    Thanks for sharing your real life!

    1. Thank you so much for the great tips, I really do appreciate the advice! I also have a top loading washer so I'm going to try your tip. Clearly my plan of folding laundry in the living room isn't working, haha!

  3. Love the real life behind the scenes!!

  4. best christmas post ever!!!!!!! love it!

  5. This is so funny. I'm loving your reality and the fact you shared, as too often we look so perfect! You house looks like mine and I have adult kids that come and go for very regular unannounced visits who in the process leave their stuff everywhere! #familylove

    1. So, what you're trying to say is that the kids clutter never ends. Haha!

  6. Thank you! I have started skipping the Christmas home tours and probably missing a lot of beautiful eye candy because Seeing perfectly curated houses - especially this time of the year gives me actual anxiety lol! I love your blog and love how you show us real life that I can relate to!

  7. I am so the same way! I am a stay-at-home mom and even then it is the worst feeling ever when you come home to a messy house. I will have weeks that I actually stick with the cleaning but I get behind one day and it is just too overwhelming and it makes me not even want to clean the house! So nice knowing I am not the only one who can't stand a messy house and yet still can't just pick up!!!

  8. Well, you do still have kids at home. That's a whole 'nother' story. Mine are grown. I have to have the dishes all clean before I go to bed though.

  9. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much for making the rest of us feel normal, and not like we're missing something. I try really hard to create beautiful seasonal vignettes, attempting perfection that might be worthy of photographing. But, real life happens, and it's impossible to consistently keep things just-so. We have to remember that all of these beautiful home tour blog writers also have real life happening around them—they just tidy/assemble/arrange, and photograph while everything is in its place. We only see a split-second snapshot, just as their decorating is at its freshest, then life resumes around them as usual. We often get tied up in the beautiful perfection and forget they're real people too—thank you for reminding us of that. Perfection may be attainable, but only for that second-long photo capture. Knowing this allows us to be easier on ourselves :)

  10. I really needed this today. Thank you. I struggle with my house being clean one day and a disaster the next?! Four kids, a husband and a job keep me from having it how I would prefer! I do need to be better at having a spot for things and actually putting it away. And making my kids do the same!

  11. This post makes me feel so good. This is REAL life for me! I am working daily to make it easier, so the task of cleaning up is not so overwhelming. Thank you for sharing we don't all live in HOUSE BEAUTIFUL all the time.

  12. Are you sure those aren't pictures of my house! 😄. It is a daily challenge.

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    1. Unless your pergola comes with a daily maid service and cocktail attendant OR a "purge and organize your space for you while you cook dinner, do homework, bathe kids, fold laundry, sign notes from teachers, feed the dogs, answer the phone, load the dishwasher, and play referee between children arguing," I'm afraid it's going to have to wait until after we can all tackle our homes and get through the holidays, finish up the 10 projects we've started and never finished and THEN maybe if we have some money leftover, we can start to think about what havoc we're going to wreak in our backyards as summer approaches. Just sayin'

  14. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Love the reality of this blog!

  15. Hi my name is Chanel and I can totally relate. I'm the single mom of two boys ages 14 and 8. We live in a two bedroom townhouse that lacks storage. I work full time and part time. Its just me and my boys and I'm always tired. For the past 15 years I have tried the flylady system. Sometimes I'm good and most times I'm not. I too am making great effort to get my home and systems on track. Take one day at a time that's what I'm doing. I'm a human doing the best that I can. Good luck.

  16. Hi Katie, I'm new to your blog and love it - this is such an honest post and takes a lot of courage to not just show the highly styled and edited pics of your home. I've recently made a pledge to be more organised around my home too and have found a few things helpful that I thought I'd share. First up, I made and designed this cleaning checklist that helps me keep my house in 'clean enough' state most of the time (some jobs are also delegated to different people in our household) And then lately I went on a bit of a decluttering and cleaning blitz and have a few tips of things I've tried that you might like to check out I hope you find these posts useful! I've still got a long way to go to get my house where I want it to be... our garage is a nightmare and I'm about to convert a guest bedroom into a kids playroom to finally sort out the toys that are taking over our home. xx

  17. Thank you so much for this post! As a brand new blogger, I often feel like I (or my house) will never match up to everyone else. With an almost two year old running around, my house is never totally picked up and put together. I'm so glad to know I'm not the only one. :) Love your blog!

  18. I just found your blog, and I already love it! You are an inspiration to me, so honest and real. Thanks

  19. Too many ads and pop-ups. Takes forever to get to the real blog.

  20. Too many ads and pop-ups. Takes forever to get to the real blog.

  21. Wow, you're human! My house is even in a more disarray... my horizontal filing system gets in the way all the time! We live in a old house with no closets... I tell ya, one does not appreciate closets until you don't have any! LOL! Glad you made this realistic post... there should be more on blogs like this one! To me, Pinterest is similar to girls/women looking & comparing themselves to models in fashion magazines.... one looks at the picture perfect homes & decor on Pinterest & compare their own homes to them. Keep on keeping it real!

  22. This is my house, minus the toys since mine are grown and gone although I do have a husband, and I am so glad I'm not alone. I too see pictures of perfect rooms and think "yeah right". We moved into a new to us home and I organized my laundry room using things I already had.I did the works, even painting walls. I wash,dry,fold, and hang all in that room. If I don't have time to put them up right away, I just close the door.

  23. I stumbled upon your post through a pin on Pinterest. I have to say, THANK YOU! For being so honest. I'm used to a neat, clean house and I feel like these days I'm fighting a losing battle. Seeing beautiful pics in a blog doesn't help. Thank you for keeping it real. I'll go home in a little better mood tonight. May 2018 be a great year for you & your family!