Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Complete and Utter Chaos. It deserves all caps. Anyone who knows me well knows that I am an organization freak. I thrive in order. When I was working I never left the office unless my desk was cleaned off and all the paperwork was filed. It was self-preservation really. When I was teaching I didn't have time to come in and organize my desk to face high-schoolers before school started...I simply had to be on top of things in order to face a class-full of teenagers when I was barely out of my teen years.

See? I mean, did you write, "Hey girl" in your teacher's yearbook? My students did.
 I have no idea what I had them doing but one of my students, David B., (far left of pic) was more focused on the camera!
 I sure had a lot of hair.
Based on the number of classes and extra-curricular activities I was in charge of, keeping organized was crucial to my survival. (They left off cheerleader coach)

Years later, when I became a designer/project manager, keeping organized was the only thing that allowed me to stay on top of all the projects/clients/contractors involved.

Fresh out of LSU and working in DC doing corporate design.
Later, in residential design, I was also one of  the stylists for the photo shoots...we found these Harry Potter glasses in our client's house while we were waiting for the photographer to do his test shots.
You really have to be on your game when the guy renovating your bathroom wears this shirt to work...and it was one of my own bathrooms no less.
We were nothing if not professional.
Ahh. But I digress. And that is part of the problem you see, because it seems that every time I get started on a project, I end up veering off the path and down the rabbit hole and the next thing you know I have dragged out old yearbooks and photo albums, then I'm scanning in photos and trolling through my digital archives looking at pictures and yet another day goes by without me getting anything substantial done.

As I stood in my kitchen this morning assessing how much of my smoothie I could suck down before one of the girls noticed it and tried to scale my body to reach the cup, my eyes surveyed the room looking for any flat surface that wasn't occupied by detritus. Finding nothing, I grabbed the camera and took a pictorial jaunt through our house.

It wasn't pretty. The stylist in me cringed.
 It's not that it's dirty. After all, we do have someone come in to clean. It's just messy. And cluttered. And the problem with a house when it gets this cluttered is that inertia starts to take over and suddenly you just don't even know where to begin. And if you do begin, you are liable to come back and find that someone else has put something on the surface you just took pride in cleaning off.

I wonder if the people portrayed on Hoarding: Buried Alive are remunerated for their humiliating turn on tv....that could be my new part-time job!


Lynn K said...

Your house looks horribly familiar - it's my house!!!! Except we don't have anyone coming in to clean so it's messy AND dirty!

Even more so since I've decided to paint one room and have taken everything out of that room.

You are not alone. I keep telling myself that messy is a sign that we enjoy our space and use it to the max.

Karla said...

Nice to know that I am not alone :) Only I am not brave enough to post all my clutter. . . although I post plenty of photos with all the clutter in the background. . . hoping the beaming smiles of my boys will have the effect of a Jedi mind trick "You don't see the mess in the background."

Samantha said...

My smile just got bigger and bigger as I scrolled through your house photos. Isn't it beautiful? Remember what it looked like before kids? Remember when you would have given anything to change that clean and shiny organization for a baby? I LOVE our mess (and we don't have a cleaning lady, our hose is dirty too). It makes me giggle to remember our homestudy social worker's concern that our home was SO clean she was worried we wouldn't be able to cope with the mess of a child!

Also enjoyed your life photos, and if documenting that sort of stuff for your kids isn't important I don't know what is.

Smitha Mathew said...

You are going to get a lot of comments on this. Did you hear that sound? So many breathing a sigh of relief!!

In fact I have wondered how your photos have such clutter free backgrounds. I explained away that it might be because Kate also tends to put away things. How is that possible with Lucy showing her to throw it around? How can a child resist that? See all the thoughts that have gone through my insecure mind.

We get it cleaned on Fridays. Everything is in its place for few hours (since otherwise the cleaning lady just cleans around the clutter and I need to make sure that I get my money's worth). Again not doing it for the right reason. Even for that Friday morning I am not a fun person to be around, because I am after O telling her not to put anything down!! I am glad I do not clean more often. It would be a nightmare for the poor kid!!


Elizabeth said...

Lisa, you make me feel soooo good! I don't have a child yet and my place looks just like yours. I have thought for a while how we could be good friends. We'd certainly feel at home in each other's place. I just spent $700 I don't have on three pieces of IKEA furniture in the hope that I can get organized and free of some of the clutter. I give up at the moment and don't know where to begin! It's all so overwhelming. Well meaning friends and family, say start with one corner at a time. If you do it that way, the few corners you cleaned quickly become cluttered again! Once again you are sooooo honest I love it!

Nancy said...

Your decor is currently "early childhood" - meaning this is as normal as your home is going to be, for now. And just FYI, your organization and decoration skills did NOT start in your teen years, as you faux-carpeted and faux-upholstered your bedroom with clothing discards as you plowed through your entire closet looking for the "perfect" outfit EVERY.SINGLE.MORNING! Plus your bathroom was a wild array of every cosmetic known to woman so you could create the "perfect" face to match your outfit.
Love from your Mom!

PinkDevora said...

Thank you SO MUCH. I feel a lot better about my house now!

PinkDevora said...

We had laundry on the couch during our SW's visit fr the six month post-placement report. My mother was horrified. I didn't care, and I doubt the SW did either.

After all, the laundry was clean!


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