The Scariest Stuff

At #Halloween time, people love to have a little fun with the phobias that scare them. Houses get bedecked with #spectres and #spiderwebs, and children dress up in #ghoulish, #gory costumes to roam the neighborhoods’ front porches in search of free candy.

But the really #scary stuff may be INSIDE THE HOUSE. Overstuffed closets that don’t shut. Heaping toy bins. Stacks of books and papers that list under their own weight. Shelves jammed with boxes of rejects and extras. That’s right: Your house is #haunted by #clutter.

Many of the things creating the clutter may be uncomfortable to look at — clothing that no longer fits or has gone out of style, for example. It’s embarrassing to look at, so you shove it to the back of the closet and try to forget about it.

Or those extra knickknacks that didn’t find a place in your new home (and never will). Isn’t it best, you might think, to just box them up and put them on a shelf in hopes that someday they will fit in to your decor?

No! Get rid of them now, and you’ll say goodbye to those embarrassments while creating new space in your home for the things you use and love. Along the way, you’ll reduce the anxiety that having a cramped, disorganized and cluttered home can produce.

Scary Mommy says that clutter produces an ominous dread in her that’s worse than any installment of the Friday the 13th franchise. “Cleaning up clutter is not just another thing on the to-do list like packing my kids’ lunches. It’s a full-on ragey kind of panic.

“It’s the feeling that I literally can’t breathe with all the clutter that’s filling our house,” she says. “It’s a feeling that the world is a chaotic place that I can’t control, and all of that chaos is represented by the loud, unruly, angsty wreck that is my living room.”

Chaos is scary. But the #decluttering process is also scary, because it demands that you go through all of that broken, disused and extra stuff and make snap decisions about what can stay and what should go.

In the spirit of the season, resolve to face those fears. Pick a disorganized, overstuffed shelf, closet or room and begin. It may be uncomfortable, embarrassing or frightening at first, but as your space slowly gets more organized, you’ll feel the anxiety lift.

If you find anything that may still be useful to other people as you declutter, bag it up and contact for a donation pickup. Like giving out candy, you’ll be cheered to donate something knowing that it will assist veterans year-round.

And that may just make decluttering feel like a trick and a treat. Happy Halloween!

‘Tis the Season to Decorate Your Home!

We know it seems a bit early to think about Christmas decorations—it’s still October, after all—but many department stores already have their Christmas displays set up. Still, this post applies to all holiday decorations, from Jack-o-Lanterns, to decorative turkeys, to other winter holiday decorations. Often times, while we’re decorating, we realize we don’t always like the decorations we have. Maybe you really liked them when you bought the decorations a few years ago, but now your decorating taste and style has changed.

You’re left with boxes full of old pieces, so you decide to put them up anyway. The more the merrier, right? That phrase might work for some things, but the more decorations you have in your home (especially if they clash!) the more cluttered your house starts to feel. Before you know it, you’re swimming in little snowmen and Santa figurines or decorative pumpkins and witches for Halloween.

Having these excess holiday decorations lying around can make it difficult to move through your home or find things that you’re looking for. Instead of putting all decorations out, consider rotating decorations every year. This way, certain pieces aren’t left collecting dust year after year, and you also won’t overwhelm yourself, your family, and your guests with every single decoration you own.

Some decorations are too sentimental for us to not put out, such as children’s holiday art. Have a designated bulletin board in your kitchen where you can proudly display them. Keeping the art in one spot will feel more organized, and less cluttered. Some decorations, though, just no longer meet your needs. When this realization comes to you, don’t stress out. Simply put these items in a box marked with the word “donation.” Then, visit our website and schedule a donation pickup time. We’ll swing by and pick up your decorations so that someone else can make their home festive for the holidays!