31 Days To a Less Messy Nest

Welcome to October 1st, the first day of our series 31 Days to a Less Messy Nest.  I hope you join me and the 7 other bloggers posting their very different 31 day series as often as you can.

I wanted to take this first day and explain why I decided to write about less messiness for 31 days here on a blog where I’m usually talking about more fun things like paint and fabric and hot glue.  It’s not because I felt like I had a plethora of information to share in this area.  It’s because I desperately needed a less messy home.  And I believe a less messy home is a more enjoyable, more beautiful home.

I’m not in search of the perfect formula that will guarantee perfectly organized spaces.

I just want to raise the bar a little and find some easy to implement ideas that will help keep me organized and ultimately  focused more on things that really matter.

We are messy people with stuff and a dog and a yard with a creek. We eat in the family room sometimes and sit our cups on a sock if we need a coaster.

We use and live in our house.  So over the past few months, I’ve been gathering information, thinking about what I do and don’t do that contributes to the chaos in our home.   I’ve been in the process of simplifying {resulting in our mega yard sale tomorrow} and really just trying to be aware of how we use our home.  It’s led me to get rid of stuff that is cute that I didn’t need, cut down the time needed to pack school lunches, and have a prettier more “come on in drop by neighbor-able” house.

I owe Leila from Like Mothers Like Daughters credit for inspiring this 31 challenge.  At the beginning of the  year she wrote a post called:: The Reasonably Clean, Fairly Neat, and Comfortably Tidy House. This Year. You can see all of her posts about keeping a reasonably clean house here.

Her words prompted me to think about my own home and as a result, I wanted to do a series that wasn’t as much about cleaning but, about tips and tricks that can help our home run more smoothly and make it prettier at the same time, all while acknowledging the fact that it’s ok to lower our expectations. Because family is more important than a pretty or clean house.

Join me and Chatting at the SkyBalancing Beauty and Bedlam, My First Kitchen, Life With My 3 Boybarians, Reluctant Entertainer, The Inspired Room, Remodeling This Life over the next 31 days.

{PS yard sale update, we are going to have the sale INSIDE my parent’s house, to the left of the empty lot if you are facing their house, look for the red arrows} 6116 Eisenhower Lane Lake Park, NC

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  1. Yay! I’m so excited for October (:
    Thanks Nester. You’re the best!

  2. You set the bar high, my friend!

    I’m eager for your tips for my very-lived-in home.

  3. i love the snippet from “the middle.” too perfect. i’m looking forward to your posts :) i can definitely use the tidying.

  4. It is nice to see that your home is not always in perfect condition- It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful, right? And it is beautiful…
    I have been lowering a lot of my expectations lately, and you know what? I’m happier because I’m disappointed less. Still living with laundry in my living room, yes, but it’s not freaking me out.

    I really look forward to the series.

    Oh, and an adage from my family’s proverbial Aunt Ada regarding an unkempt house:
    If you can live in it, others can visit in it.

  5. I love Auntie Leila, and your goal is the same as mine- a “come on in neighbor” house, not a magazine house.

    I’m so looking forward to this series!

  6. I have so let go of the “perfect” house. Come in, step over and sit on…let’s visit!

  7. Oh my gosh. That picture with all the kids laying comfortably on the couch may be my favorite “decorating” picture ever. I love looking at gorgeous pictures of homes that are beautifully decorated, but that picture just screams HOME to me. Love it!

    Best of luck in the upcoming month!

  8. My favorite quote, regarding home and less clutter in a home:

    Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful,
    or believe to be beautiful. (William Morris)

    I am SO happy to see someone out in the blogosphere who doesn’t have an always tidy home, who is imperfect like me. ;) Thanks for sharing this. I start to feel inferior and question again and again “How do they all DO it?!” :)

  9. You’ve got me hooked already! I am totally with you on your approach and your intention behind it. I love the pic of all the kiddos hanging out on the couch- a beautiful site!

  10. Sight! duh:)

  11. Looking forward to the next 31 days with so many of my favorite bloggers! Including you. Will anticipate your posts. Happy Autumn!

    God Bless,

  12. Can’t wait to read and learn!

  13. Lynne in NC says:

    Thanks for the laugh from The Middle trailer (hee hee) — young and shiny!
    I’m looking forward to visiting with all you gals over the next 31 days.
    love ya!

  14. I’m looking forward to your tips about how to keep our home running smoothly!

  15. I laughed through that video and now I want to set my DVR to record that show.

    I’m looking forward to your 31 day posts. I used to keep my larger home so much more clean that the smaller one we had to move into recently. Somehow things tend to get messier here since there’s no room.

    blessings and love,

  16. I need this more than I am really willing to admit. Can’t wait.


  17. I love this: it’s ok to lower our expectations. Because family is more important than a pretty or clean house.

    Thank you for doing this, Nester. You are going to help to so many!

    Here’s to 30 more! xox

  18. I’m looking forward to reading your 31 Days contribution.

    Won’t make the yard sale. Bummer. But we’re camping instead. Yay!
    Inside their house. Wow. You all are brave people! Hope you sell every last item and have fun doing it.

  19. Just wanted to say I am REALLY looking forward to having a less messy nest :) Great idea. And BTW, I’m so tempted to drive to NC to go to your yard sale! Being in FL though I think my husband might frown on me throwing my 3 small children in the car for the longest trip to a yard sale, haha! Hope it’s great!

  20. So excited for this series, Nester! Right now, I’m looking at some pretty cluttered countertops. How they got that way since I hosted my BU party on Tuesday and had a reasonably clean and picked up house, I can’t say. Well, I can, but it involves two children. Just watched that promo for “In the Middle.” Hilarious! I caught the end of an episode once and it is funny…the youngest son makes me laugh. :)

  21. Ahh…good luck with your yard sale and hope the weather clears…out neighborhood is have their community yard sale this sat as well and right now with all this rain it’s not looking so hot!
    Also looking forward to following along with this series and I’m using it to jumpstart more purging in my home as well. Have a great weekend, fondly, Roberta

  22. Since this is seriously the first blog I hop to in the morning, I can’t wait for this series. Love the Nester Style. If I can’t go to Home Goods with you in person for you to pick out the best lamp for me, I will take this 31 day series. :)
    Have a blessed weekend.

  23. I’m so thankful for your willingness to share your real life. And I’m really looking forward to the tips and tricks – there are spaces in my home that could use a little help right now!

  24. Well, I must reeeally love my family because my house is a mess ;)

  25. Colleen P. says:

    I’m excited about this! I’ve already started in the last couple of weeks because DH and I FINALLY found a couch we both liked, and we FINALLY arranged the living room the way I’ve been wanting to have it! It only took 3 years for both of those to happen-fortunately we were patient and able to wait until we could agree on the furniture. Unfortunately it went on a card; I had to live with a loveseat and recliner as the ONLY seating in an 18×15 room for 3 years, I pounced on that sofa the moment DH said “wow this is really comfortable!” Yes, I broke a cardinal Nester rule but…sometimes ya just gotta break the rules.

    Once we got it in and in the right place, the room became HUUUUUGE! And all the little cluttery bits became very obvious. So, 8 grocery bags of books left, my collection of little blue bottles, which really don’t amuse me as much any more, are all bagged up ready to go, and I’m picking my way through all the other stuff. I am really looking forward to this month! Hopefully I can work my way through the whole house!

  26. Looking forward to it! May the tidy force be with us all!

  27. i’ve been looking forward to this and the other’s. i, so, hope your yard sale is clear of rain…my dear. have a great weekend!

  28. I have also been looking to this! So excited! And so happy you posted pics of your house looking less than perfect, because let’s be for real–with kids, your house is ALWAYS going to be a work in progress, otherwise, it’s just not being lived in. PS–love that you guys use socks as coasters. We don’t even USE coasters, but I’m pretty sure if we did, they’d be socks too. ;)

  29. I love your living room! I just discovered your blog and the 31 day series. I look forward to witnessing your journey. Thank you for sharing!


  30. I’m excited about this. For realz.

  31. I love that show and I think it is underrated. All the attention goes to Modern Family (which is also good). The series sounds fun- looking forward to it!

  32. Thanks for doing this! I’ve been trying to get back on the wagon with my cluttered house! Really just need to sanity!!! (might sneek to the yard sale!!!) Bring it on!

  33. I’ve always been a “thrower” and I married a “keeper” (slight hoarder) and now that all of my kids are in school this year I’m throwing like crazy! The second-hand shop in our little town can’t keep up with my purging. It’s feeling so good and hubby is following suit with his stuff in the basement. I love your idea and I’ve given myself the month of Oct to finish projects around the house that have paralyzed me with fear. I’m doing it–finally!

  34. This ought to be a fun series. I have a teenage son and one in elementary school and a “hyper” dog. So, I fully understand living in a messy house! I’m a clean-a-holic type person, so sometimes it bothers me and other times I have to remind myself that my home doesn’t always have to look perfect as if nobody lives here. It definitely makes life alot easier to remind myself of that too! I think that’s one reason I love that tv show, In the Middle, so much. Isn’t it a scream?! I know so many people like Modern Family, but I just can’t relate to it. I can actually relate to the other one though. Thanks for sharing that hilarious clip! Looking forward to reading the posts in your upcoming series.

  35. less mess sounds great. I always seem to think that less mess means more work… I fail to realize that if I just do a little each day. so I’m off to go tackle Mount Laundry. *bye*

  36. Can’t wait to hear your great tips! I have four kids, a cat, and both my hubby and I run our own businesses…I totally relate to the ‘stuff’! Thanks!

  37. YaY Im excited about this new series! So, you would be very proud of me.. I have started to gather my ideas and figure out what I REALLY love in terms of style and decorating for when our traveling comes to an end and we get to begin fresh.

    Stay tuned at mymountaincottage.blogspot.com for pics and such of figuring out my style.

  38. I love that you are honest about really “living” in your home. You are inspiring! We could all benefit from cutting downon the clutter and focusing on the important stuff!

  39. Dear Sweet Nester,

    Thanks so much for that wonderful shout-out! I’ll have to spruce things up to get ready for the extra guests! :)

    You are my inspiration too so keep up the good work!


  40. Looking forward to this! You do a great job, Nester!

  41. I cannot thank you enough for this post and this series! I soooo need this. I’ve been hanging out at Leila’s blog for a while reading her “Reasonably Clean” posts and I will spend off and on today working my way through her posts for day one of your series. Thank you for the wonderful link to her blog. She truly is inspirational and I’ve been jotting down notes from her blog as I read. I’m determined to get my home in order before the holidays and even more determined to keep it that way after the holidays. I love your blog!

  42. Can’t wait, Nester! I have my own four “clean enough” routines that I try to use every day, but I really need to get rid of STUFF, I have way too much of it lately. It multiplies!! Time to get with the 31 Day program here!! Very excited. xoxo

  43. Forgot to add that I’m a fairly new reader here and I had no idea that you had a messy house issue too. Your house is gorgeous and everything seems so in place when you post pics on your blog. Thanks for keeping it real!

  44. Thank you SO much. With 2 little kids, I feel like I spend most of my time on messes and don’t have as much time or energy left for decorating as I’d like! This is exactly what I need. :)

  45. That will be lovely! I am in a puting things straight mood lately. I find much pleasure in puting things in their right places. I think I am in nesting mode!

  46. I’ve been amazed by how tidy your home looks in all of your photos. My little apartment gets way more messy and there are only two people living there! Good luck with your 31-day mission! Fingers are crossed :)

  47. Lovley home as usual–hehee I see no mess. Seriously. I know what you mean, I don’t worry about the clutter–but sometimes it can get too much out of hand–especially with 5 pets and a teenager toting friends. We too, “live” in our home and I wouldn’t have it any other way! Can’t wait to read more!!!!!

  48. Hi Nester! Love this post and am totally curious…Where did you get your “nest” sign used in your first photo? I have been searching etsy but cannot find and want one so badly for our home!

    God Bless you this day~

  49. I love this idea and am excited to check out all the blogs. I totally know what you mean when you say that you want a “come on in drop by neighbor-able” house. I want that too. Most of the time, my house is embarrasing to me and I hope to turn that around now that the kids are in school. I’ve already started, but have a lot to do. I’ve promised myself that for each room I tackle and complete, I’ll buy myself a treat like flowers to brighten up my day.

  50. thankyouthankyouthankyou. . . a thousand thankyous!!! you must have been in my thought bubble. i WANT to get to the fun stuff (paint + hot glue) but can’t get past the messiness! i PROMISE i will be a faithful reader/doer so that at the end of the 31 days my nest will be less of a mess and my mind will be more at peace. blessings dear nester! :)

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