Part Two- Konmari with Kids
Three weeks in………..
The whole tidying at once and intensely is indeed intense. The house is in a state of flux, there are things pulled out of drawers, a skip outside and boxes everywhere but its good, I am getting through it. I originally thought the whole thing would take me a month but I may need to revise that upwards.
I wrote already about tidying all my clothes, the husbands and the hotpress of doom.
Next up was the kids stuff. I have four children. They have a lot of
crap things. I decided I needed them on board so I tried to explain what I was doing and even offered to read the book to them; they declined although the eldest read bits and pieces of it.
Their clothes were somewhat problematic as I have three girls so there was the question of what I was going to save. I started with the boy’s stuff, he hasn’t as many clothes ( judge me if you want). The things that spark joy for the boy child are tracksuit bottoms, t shirts and hoodies, sigh. We dumped everything that doesn’t make him happy, well not everything but a lot of it. I also realised he had loads of clothes in his wardrobe and drawers that didn’t fit him anymore stuff towards the back so they were easy to throw out. Shirts, jackets hung, trousers folded, underwear drawer and a uniform section and we were done.
The eldest and the youngest’s didn’t take too long either. I went through all the stuff I had been keeping for the baby and got rid of 80% of it. I let the eldest decide what was going and what was staying and it wasn’t too bad.
The five year old loves clothes, she had the most clothes and she still has the most clothes. She has a lot of clothes from her older sister and she enjoys clothes and they spark joy for her, so we kept over half her stuff. Its better organised though. She has a wardrobe full of dresses and its organised by colour. It is a thing of beauty.
Then I tackled all their underwear. How can small children accumulate so much underwear? I dumped most of it. I may have gone overboard as they don’t have a lot left but they have enough provided there isn’t a massive laundry backlog.
The kids watched me sort and tidy, they joined in. Then they mocked me a bit. Then they were Konverted. It has been two weeks since I sorted their clothes and its working. IT IS ACTUALLY WORKING. They have all said they find getting dressed easier, the can see what they have. The know where everything is and they aren’t destroying the system. Now they aren’t putting their clothes away because I am a control freak and wont let them but they are bring their laundry upstairs and I am folding and putting it away. Not the ideal situation but its working for now.
I am still working through the rest of their crap and I did make a fatal error. The first rule of getting rid of your kids possessions, especially their artwork- You do it when they aren’t there and you make sure it’s hidden. I am at this parenting game long enough, to know this. I fucked up though.
This is the five-year old skip diving, retrieving her school books and art work from the skip bag. You can’t see her tears in this photo nor can you hear her shouts of “HOW COULD YOU?“.
I apologised, we compromised. She kept some of it and I have since re-dumped it and gotten away with it this time. She hasn’t looked for the books and pictures, she has reminded me of my betrayal and hurtful actions and told me many times how long it took her to do all that work. I do feel bad just not bad enough to keep it all.
The book has sorted out some of my sentimentality, clearly. A lot of art work was dumped. I kept the very bare minimum ,a slim folder with their playschool stuff and one or two things from their schoolwork and their school reports. Everything else is going or gone. It feels AMAZING and they haven’t noticed.
I have been dumping other things belonging to them as I go along but I have yet to tackle the cesspit where happiness goes to die that is the playroom. I am waiting until school is back next week.
Another problem that is emerging is that I am realising that a lot of stuff sparks no joy but I don’t have money to replace it. I am imagining setting fire to our couches so we will have to replace them but that’s probably extreme, I haven’t ruled it out yet though.
The eldest moved into her own room late last year, we hadn’t gotten around to doing it up for her. During the tidying of all the crap I found lots of bits and pieces that I had been buying for her room and yesterday the room makeover took place. Her room is painted and decorated and there is joy sparking all over it and that is the first full room fully konmari’d, signed off, joyful place.
I cannot wait to get all the rest of the house finished. I am fully Konverted and I am working hard to raise mini Konverts. I hope to never ever again have to retrieve a sobbing child from a skip.
Konmari Part Two
Bags Dumped: 50+
Kids Artwork, School Books, Notebooks and Miscellaneous paper items: enough to wallpaper half of Dublin gone.
Konmari Game: At times overwhelming, still strong, very strong.
Is anybody else Magic Tidying? How are you getting on?