Purge and clean your homes challenge! Are you in?

Welcome to Week 1 of the Purge and Clean your home series!

NEXT – Visit week 2 HERE

Visit all the series to date HERE

Are you ready for a purge and clean your homes challenge?! I sure am!

Flocked Christmas tree in a reclaimed wood tree skirt

Yesterday I said ‘cya next year’ to my Christmas tree. Sigh…

It was a fleeting moment… I hadn’t really planned to take it ALL down yet… but did it anyway. I’d like to fire up some messy renovations soon again so I figured may as well do it now vs. later.

But I admit, I was nervous about not finding room for the big new tree box. This is a new tree and I was already tight for space. Turns out, I was actually successful in stuffing it inside the under-the-stairs closet!

I honestly didn’t see that coming. Oh, it took removing a bunch of stuff and fitting it back together like a Tetris game, but I did it without some big purge!

But looking around the other rooms didn’t make me feel nearly as proud. Goodness… what bomb went off that I didn’t even hear?!

Are you feeling it too? Christmas was so big… and then we were so busy… and then it was over so fast. Who had time to keep up with it all?

a messy before paint studio

In my paint studio downstairs, I actually intentionally put stuff on surfaces so I had easier access to them. I had turned the room into a santa’s workshop of sorts… but now with that season over and a new one emerging, it truly was time to put it all away. And there was lots.

I had visions of firing up some kind of big cleaning and purging plan, but feeling too overwhelmed for that, one word kept rising to the top… 


a messy before tool station

Today… ugh.

How to turn a table top into a mini tool station

What it should look like!

With surfaces looking like that, I was no where NEAR ready for some big purge that would have me creating a mountain in the middle of my home that I couldn’t even fit out a door!

Survival to me means putting stuff away to the point of being able to function normally again. Improvements can come later.

messy paint studio before

Yech… the paint studio needs help!

paint studio reclaimed wood shelving for paint

Paint studio shelving revamped

So I rolled up my sleeves, and just started. Everything on any given surface found their way back to their original home, and one by one, the table tops appeared again. It felt so good!

Now know, some of those things didn’t land in a ‘good’ home. Some landed on piles of other things, or in a pile on the floor.

That’s ok I mused… that just means those piles indicate where the real problem areas are. Good to know.

As my surfaces appeared once again, my stress immediately eased, making me feel like I could be creative in an instant once again. Yay!

So… are you spinning circles on what you should tackle first?

I’d like to suggest something really, really simple to remember…

a messy photo studio before


Week 1 – Clean off all your surfaces.

Clean off every surface you own, and put the stuff away.

Give yourself a good week! Cleaning doesn’t have to be a race… it’s meant to bring you peace.

If you have some rooms that will require more time than that, I suggest to stick to the areas you use all the time for now. Survival first… then productivity.

If you know immediately something has to go, throw it in a big empty box destined for either the thrift, to sell or dump. Divide it up if you wish to start that now.

But… I’d like to suggest to focus on JUST surfaces. Every surface. Clean them off, then give them a good wipe down.

All I know is, I felt nearly normal again after doing most of mine today. I can’t wait to continue tomorrow!


You already know I’m good for some good befores and afters… but would you yourself like to be encouraged or challenged in a manageable way to clean your homes as well?

I’m debating on picking up the Marie Kondo book once again and going full throttle but in small, obtainable steps. I really REALLY want to do the whole house this year. Even if it takes me a full year!

(if there isn’t much interest here on the blog to join in, I’ll just update once I’ve done something significant. Otherwise, I can share a little more often to help encourage)

Marie Kondo's The life changing magic of tidying up

The Marie Kondo Theory

Are you familiar with the Kondo theory? The book is a quick and easy read and the theory is good!

* Hang onto only the stuff that actually serves you and you appreciate. (*sparks joy)

* You purge in a sequence, starting with clothing first. Theory is, it’s easier to relinquish, so she’s training you for the harder stuff later on.

* Stuff is grouped together first, then put back in one place, so it’s easier to keep track of what you have.

Would it interest you to follow along with the concept and go at it together at a slower pace?


If you have interest, I’ve resurrected the Crap To Clean Facebook group if you care to join in! It’s a friendly, supportive community of Funky Junk readers in a private group setting giving you a way to share your own success and encourage others. We’d love to have you!

Ask to JOIN HERE if interested!


So where are you at with the big cleaning thing? Do you have lots to do too? What are you hoping to work on first?

Need some inspiration? Below are some pretty significant clean ups to get things started… and yikes…

The big paint studio purge!

My now dream workshop! (oh my goodnesssssss)


NEXT – Visit week 2 HERE

Visit all the series to date HERE

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Categories: Blog Series, From Crap to Clean
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21 thoughts on “Purge and clean your homes challenge! Are you in?

  1. hi donna, oh those photos look so familiar! My biggest thing is where to start? I get so distracted like a squirrel! ha! i’m in!

    Happy New Year! laura (formerly not a trophy wife) now blogging at Everyday Edits dot co

    • I hear ya Laura… it’s HARD.

      That’s why I’m starting with getting normalicy as a first. Gotta stay productive in order to live.

      Then I’m going to dig in, probably in the areas I frequent most. But I may also follow the Kondo order as it makes sense. Have you tried the theory yet? I’ll update in my posts how that works for those that wish to do it.

      Good luck! haha

  2. I’m in Donna! We have an empty nest now and I’ve got a workshop that needs finished up and organized and I need to go through the entire house again and purge more stuff. The Marie Kondo book was soooo helpful to me because it changed my mindset from deciding what to get rid of vs. deciding what to KEEP. I made huge strides and the house has been easier to keep up with. My biggest issues right now are: paper (mail etc.), crafts (workshop and sewing stuff), and long-term storage (kids’ memorabilia and heirlooms).

  3. Hi, I am not connected to Facebook, but always follow along on the blog …. I have begun (in a small way) the same process, 2 bags to thrift so far.
    I cannot face my clothing closets. I avoid them. any help out there for that problem?? I will continue on as I’m able, watching the blog for any news of your process, and your readers! good luck, ann lee s

    • Thanks for following along Ann!

      My best solution for closets is to completely GUT them, pile everything on your bed, and only put back the things you absolutely LOVE.

      It’s like starting fresh! The hard part will be to relinquish all you don’t love, but why hang onto it if you don’t like it?

      I also highly suggest to read the Marie Kondo book. She goes over clothing quite in depth and it all makes perfect sense! She gives you the ability to relinquish more-so.

    • SAME! This is the year I don’t want to stop because I ‘should put up a cute project’. I want to incorporate both and do the entire house in a year. It’s a big wish list but I’m up for it… currently. LOL

      • Me, too, Donna. Tired of “stuff” lying around and stepping over it to clean. I want a wide, clear path in every room and nothing in my home that I do not use on a regular basis. Kitchen cupboards are next on the list. We downsized from 2400 square feet to 960 square feet. I have no choice but to purge. Glad you started this! Currently…LOL. Cute.

  4. Hello Donna! Love your site, been a follower for awhile and sending more followers your way all the time.
    Lost my best friend last year, we were Sewing buds. Both having way too much stuff. We both loved our Sewing rooms, packed with lovely stuff. We have a lovely Sewing Group that we meet with a couple times a month, “Purging” being an open conversation all the time. But this past year has been an eye opener for me, helping my friend’s children packing items up and sorting out and moving along….yesterday being the final day there to get the last of the Stuff! Taking the two cars that are packed to our next gathering at the Sewing Club to see if any interest by other club members. If not, on to the quilt guild to get donated and if not on to other donations. And may I say, this was a conversation her and I had many times, what would happen with our stuff. No not hoarders, just two ladies and many more ladies, loving their craft over many years. So….since I retired a few years ago and have been purging…more than ever I will continue purging on.
    So, yes, keep inspiring us to do just that! It’s just Stuff in life that we love…but when not needed anymore…Let It GO!!!!
    And Please, keep inspiring us with your craft!! Love the great ideas!!

  5. I am doing the 30-day Minimalism Game and OMG it is hard but good. Every day you increase what you recycle/toss… #MinsGame on twitter

  6. joined the fb group. i have been able to maintain the clothing PURGE we made when we downsized to this home a couple of years ago. Still working on that garage/laundry/office though. My closet/sewing room remains my favorite.
    we began the new year with the ugly cold/cough thing so getting the energy back is a bit of a challenge.Is this also plaguing your country ?

  7. I completely understand everything in this post. We torn down some walls, and an easier redo turned into almost a complete redo that has me with piles of stuff, more piles, spots that won’t be rebuilt and homes are needed for that stuff. When the dust has settled and the party is over, what doesn’t have a new home will leave. I figure about the time you are done with your purge I will be starting.

  8. I did a 30 day challenge in January. Each day you get rid of the amount of the day. Such as January 1st you get rid of 1 thing, January 2nd 2 things and so on. By the end of the month you have purged over 400 items. My house looks so much better now and I am still working on it. I want to do another month when I will be home all month, but this month I said it was finish February. What I did was finish up projects that I had already started. The one I am most proud of is the quilt that was started over 30 years ago!

  9. I would love to join you Donna, but quit Facebook long ago due to their data mining and other terrible practices! (There’s an amazing book about it called “Zucked; Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe.” I wish there was a different platform that you and others could use, because I’d be in in two seconds. But I’ll be reading your blog! : (

  10. PLEASE keep the updates coming. I desperately need motivation! My tidy up is SO overwhelming, and have been putting it off for months.
    It would be great to complete The Kondo method, especially in smaller chunks.
    I am hoping that with your blog I can stop feeling so overwhelmed and manage to Kondo my entire home, even if it does take me an entire year!!
    Thank you

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