Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Organizing Challenge: The Results!

My  newly decluttered master bedroom- Yay!

This past month, I decided to participate in OrgJunkie's 29 Day Organizing Challenge.  This room had been driving me nuts for a while and I figured a little internet accountability would help me dig in and get the job done.  I am proud to say that, not only did I get it done, I finished BEFORE the deadline and I didn't spend a single penny on the project!
Since the initial purge, I've been much more motivated to keep the space neat, putting things in their place right away rather than leaving them "in limbo".  Starting with an uncluttered space naturally lends itself to keeping it uncluttered.  Clutter simply breeds more clutter.  I've decided it's much easier to avoid said clutter when you're aware of this simple fact!

Here are the links to my previous posts associated with this challenge:

So without further ado, here are my before and after pics:

North wall before and after
You'll notice the bedspread has changed.  I always hated that plaid duvet cover so following the "Do you love it?" rule of decluttering, I got rid of it!  The new cover is a blanket that was previously stored in the extra-blanket-basket. 
Yeah, that basket is in the first picture, too.  It's hiding. 
Top of my dresser
My triathlon gear corner
New solutions as shown below: Race medal hanger (made from blank canvas, picture I printed off the internet, paint and small nails), relocated bookshelf to hold training-related reading material and my swim bag, relocated and decorated 2 plastic drawers to hold miscellaneous triathlon gear.  Coat hanger for training jackets, hats, etc was there but is now more easily accessible.

South and west walls, including closet: Changes to the closet were minimal and pretty much just involved purging.
The scary corner ended up being not so scary.  I purged all but one small tote of "skinny clothes" (now located under the bed).  Dave's cowboy hats were stacked in the closet, other hats hung on my homemade hanger.  I managed to find room for the tubs of fabric in a closet in another room.  Dave made shelves for his motorcycle helmets, and did a very good job organizing his stuff when requested.
My side of the closet before and after.  The easiest part of this challenge?  Hanging that mirror back up.  
Dave's side of the closet before and after
Dave's dresser and scary (no longer!) southwest corner
Dave's nightstand
Clutter replaced by laundry hamper.  This hamper was actually folded up and shoved in the corner., not being used.  

New solutions on this side of the room included shelving for Dave's motorcycle helmets (made from old, unused shelving material), and hanging hat storage (kitchen twine, clothespins, and nails).

1. What space did you decide to organize and why? 
I organized the master bedroom.  It had become the dumping ground for things that didn't fit anywhere else, especially when we had company because we could just shut the door.  A bedroom is supposed to be a space to relax.  Looking at the clutter in this room was FAR from relaxing!

2.  What steps did you take to ensure you completed the space within the 29 day timeline?  
I actually wasn't able to  get any time to work on this  space until about a third of the way through the month.  I hit it hard those first couple days, then just kept working on it a little at a time. 

3.  What was the hardest part of the challenge for you and how did you overcome it?
The hardest part was getting rid of some of my childhood "stuff".  I had been keeping some of it just because I thought I should, not because I loved it.  It actually helped that I didn't do any work on the space in the first 10 days.  I was able to take some time to really think it through and make a "mental purge pile" so that when the time came, I was ready to get rid of them. 

4. What did you do with the “stuff” you were able to purge out of your newly organized space?
 5 kitchen-garbage-size bags of clothing - Goodwill  
Assorted jewelry and ties- Ready For Success
Old prom dress shoes- local theatre group
One large bag torn/stained clothing- garbage
Four pairs running shoes - Soles for Souls
One file box "stuff" for garage sale
Pack-n-Play- relocated to space behind couch in living room
Old school desk (previously buried under clothes) - moved to my son's room
2 totes of fabric- found room in another room's closet
Miscellaneous "stuff" - put back in it's place

5.  Tell me one of your proudest moments during this challenge? 
My proudest moment in this challenge was when I finished it without spending a single penny on the project! 

6.  Explain any organizing “tools” you used to help you create additional space and to establish some limits and boundaries? 
With the shoes/clothes, we made them fit the available space.  We already had containers in place for these but were allowing things to overflow the allotted space. 
Another "tool" we used was to repurpose containers from other places in the house if they could be put to better use in the bedroom.  The shelf that now holds my training magazines and books, as well as my swim bag was previously just holding decorative items in the entryway.  The plastic drawers that hold my gear were full of tools in the basement that were just as easily stored in boxes.  
I also used the internet as a tool when looking for ideas for storage solutions.  The one solution I used that I found on the internet was a tutorial for storage for Dave's hats (found here).

7.  What is ONE piece of advice you’d give to someone else to encourage them on their organizational journey?
The easiest way to get overwhelmed is to look at the big picture, whether that be looking at the whole house or just one room.  Breaking it into small, manageable tasks is so much less stressful and makes it a lot easier to take a deep breath and dive in!  Start small and remember, you don't have to organize everything in one day!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Training log Feb 20-27

Week 2 of marathon training isn't nearly as impressive as week 1 was. I did such a good job the first week of making time for my workouts, getting up early, even completing my optional Saturday bike session.

The week started with a rest day, then Tuesday I just had a bad day that took the wind out of my sails for the remainder of the week. Tuesday morning I was up at 5am for a 5 mile treadmill run. I got dizzy, like usual, but almost fell off the 'mill. I have been able to run through the dizziness when I run outdoors, but I've almost fallen off the treadmill twice now. Considering there is a cement wall behind me, I'm not too keen on that happening. I was NOT pleased with getting up at 5am to complete only 2 miles.

Later Tuesday morning I went to see my doctor again about the dizziness issues. They referred me off to the ENT and the cardiologist. I wasn't too depressed about this until my sitter called sick with the flu and I had to miss master swim. Unfortunately that gave me time to sit around that evening and stew about my upcoming appointments and the possible ailments my doctor had described.

That put me in a funk for the next couple days. Liam decided not to nap on Wednesday, I had my first appointment/testing with the cardiologist on Thursday and that pretty much wiped out those two days. By Friday I was more than ready to get back on schedule and I turned the planned easy 3-miler into a pace run.
Saturday and Sunday we went to visit friends. I packed all my running gear, nutrition for the planned 11-miler, compression and self-massage tools, ready to get in a couple good workouts. By the time we got there Saturday, I was just ready to relax and visit and decided to skip my planned 5-miler. We stayed up far too late playing Farkle and visiting, not setting me up well for Sunday.

Sunday I ended up having to lay down with Liam in order to get him to nap. Since I hadn't had much sleep I wasn't too put out by this! Problem was I ended up laying there with him for over 2 hours. Dave came in to get ready for his run and offered to let me go instead, but I was feeling pretty lazy by that point.

Last week's sad numbers:

Tues: run 2
Fri: 3 mile run, last 2@10k pace
Total: 5 miles run

Anyway, I'm hoping for a little better self-motivation this week!

I've rescheduled my missed 11-miler to Tuesday. Not sure what's going to happen with master swim on Tuesday, the weather is supposed to be terrible. I may end up revamping this whole week's plan.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Random Five Friday

Teeball season in Minnesota

1. I've been interested for a while in getting Brendan Brazier's cookbook Thrive Foods.  So when I saw on Twitter that he was hosting a live webinar this week on Learn It Live, I immediately signed up.  While I'm not vegan, and have no intention of becoming vegan, I am always on the lookout for tasty, healthy, plant-based recipes.  I'm not that fond of meat and don't eat it very often. I figure my husband can just add a slab of meat to whatever I've made if he wants to.  The webinar was based on his first book- you can view the recorded webinar here.

I also went ahead and bought the book.  It arrived yesterday and I plan to make my first recipe out of it tonight.   I hate it when I buy a cookbook and there are only a couple recipes I think I'll actually make.  That's not the case with this book.  Just browsing through it I am interested in at least 25% of the recipes, probably more upon closer inspection.  Tonight, Liam and I are going to try the Black Bean Sliders.

2. We finally got some snow!  Well, just enough to take the ski/bike trailer contraption out in the yard.  The snow had already blown off the roads this  morning,  but the yard had just enough cover.  It's a good thing we went out this morning, because by 1pm even the yard had melted off too much to  be ski-able.  This is a fun toy, even Liam thought it was fun to pull around the yard,  I wish we had more opportunities to use it this winter. Although, it is still only February and it is Minnesota so anything could happen!

3. I have saved myself over $300 this year by being on Twitter.  I won a race entry to a race I was going to do anyway.  I won a gift certificate to that I plan to use toward new shoes.  And I saved $ on my condo for the Rev3 race after I posted that I had booked it (they had an athlete price that hadn't been posted yet).  And Dave thinks all the time I spend on the internet is worthless...HA!

4. I had my first appointment with the cardiologist on Thursday.  They did an echocardiogram but I don't know the results yet.

5.  I think I want to get a heart rate monitor for training.  I already have a Garmin, but it's not one of the HR compatible models.  I hate to spend the money to get a new GPS and HR watch, but I also don't want to wear two watches.  Thoughts?  Recommendations for a specific model?
The Cadillac of GPS /HR watches...the Garmin 910XT...drool...

Monday, February 20, 2012

The AM workout experiment...

 So I had this wonderful idea...
Go to bed when Liam does and get up earlier than he does so I can get my workout in.  Perfect for days when either the weather or Liam's nap schedule aren't cooperating, right?
Oh wait, I'm not a morning person...crap.
I decided to try it anyway.  Tuesday was Day One of the experiment. I laid out my clothes, set the coffeemaker to auto, set my alarm, and went to bed at 8:30pm.
I couldn't get to sleep.  When I finally did, Liam woke up crying (for no apparent reason, I put him back  to bed and he was fine). Then I couldn't get back to sleep.
I woke up to the alarm and NO COFFEE.  (I think I'd better find the directions.)
I got up anyway. I was impressed by myself here, usually I would have just shut off the alarm and gone back to sleep.
I forgot to lay out my headphones so I dug around for those, got dressed and made my way downstairs.  Most importantly, I did this quietly enough to not wake the monkey!
I trudged through my prescribed 5 miles for the day, slower and more painful than they would have been later in the day.
I got it done.

This was the best smile I could muster the first day with no coffee. 
Slightly more awake after 5 miles on the 'mill.

Tuesday evening was host to my second ever masters swim class (LOVE this class!). And since I was out playing  swimming, I had to stay up long enough to wash diapers, giving me a bedtime of around 10:45pm.
And no coffee ready for the morning.  GAH!  Why do I do this to myself?  I forgot to grind coffee before Liam went to bed!
And I didn't get up on Wednesday morning.  I woke up with a pretty good tension headache, turned off the alarm and went back to sleep.  I still had the headache at 7:30 when Liam woke up, but with a heat pack and some tennis-ball rolling, it went away.  Wednesday's workout was done during L's nap.
Wednesday night I remembered to grind the coffee, found the directions and set the machine properly, and went to bed early.
My alarm went off at 5am and I heard the sweet sound of success coming from the kitchen... my coffee was brewing!  So of course I popped out of bed, okay more like rolled slowly, and got myself a cup.
Wasn't it Meatloaf that sang "two outta three ain't bad"?

MUCH more awake with coffee.  Much less scary-looking, too!
I spent the prescribed 60 minutes on the trainer and then walked on the treadmill for another 30+ minutes while I finished the movie I was watching.

Halfway done!
Well, that was all for the first week.  Dave being home on the weekends means I don't have to get up so early.  I'm ready to give a go again this week, especially now that the coffeemaker is working!
And now I have Meatloaf songs stuck in my head...

Training Log Jan 12-19 & Virtual Triathlon/Duathlon Event

This training log is going to be a little off compared to the rest - it contains one extra day.  I'm changing over from using a Sun-Sat calendar to track my workouts to a Mon-Sun calendar.  Why?  My training plan is built on a Mon-Sun calendar and I am annoyed by not tracking the same way I'm planning.  To that end, I'm designing myself a bunch of planner pages that fit MY requirements for my to-do lists, food journaling, training planning and tracking, etc.  

So here's the one lone day that is lost in limbo: 
Sun Feb 12: 30 minute easy spin on bike trainer

And here's the first week in the new Mon-Sun format:
Mon: 30 minute easy spin on bike trainer
Tues: 5 mile treadmill run, 53:28; short lap swim + masters class for total of 1800 yds
Weds: 3x400 "hill" repeats on treadmill @ 10K pace, 3 miles total, 29:33
Thurs: 60 min bike trainer; 33 minute walk on treadmill after bike so I could finish watching my movie :)
Fri: 3 miles easy on treadmill, 30:00
Sat: 5 mile run at marathon pace, 49:18; 60 minute recovery spin
Sun: 10 mile run - middle 4 with my dad, 1:51:00

Weekly Totals:
Swim: 1800yds
Bike: 2.5 hours on trainer
Run: 26 miles

On to the virtual event:

Jason from Cook Train Eat Race is hosting a virtual triathlon/duathlon event to benefit Shape-Up America.  This is how Shape-Up America describes themselves on their website: 

"Founded in 1994, Shape Up America! is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization committed to raising awareness of obesity as a health issue and to providing responsible information on healthy weight management. Take a journey through our website to find information and ideas to achieve a healthy weight for you and your family. If you are a health professional, you will find resources to assist your clients and patients with their efforts to attain and maintain a healthy weight."

Jason is asking for a mere $10 donation to participate in this event.  Most of us are training anyway, and I don't know about you, but I can always use the extra accountability!  Plus, he has prizes from some great sponsors lined up!  It's not too late to jump into this event- you have a whole month to complete the distances. Find more info and register here

Friday, February 17, 2012

Random Five Friday

1. I won a gift card to on Twitter this week!  I usually don't win anything but so far this year I've won an entry to a Rev3 race and this gift card.  That means triathlon is my lucky sport, right?

2. I'm still having some GI issues.  I have already determined through an elimination diet that I am sensitive to gluten, lactose, flax, and maybe soy.  I'm feeling kind of lost and am thinking about seeking the help of a registered dietician. I see the doctor again on Tuesday.  If I don't get some answers about my dizziness issues, I'm asking for a referral.

3. I got my hair cut for the first time in 13 months today.  You know you've reached "old" status when you and your hairdresser talk about your medical issues.

4. The in-laws are coming to visit this weekend.  I'm excited to have them come, but not excited to clean the house.  I'm feeling lazy.

5. So lazy, in fact, that I can only think of four things.  Guess I'll go clean the house.

Happy Weekend, everyone!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Prettied-Up Gear Storage

So yeah, this is only triathlon related because these beauties now house my extra gear that was previously just thrown randomly in the corner.

This is what they looked like when I rescued them from the basement.  This is AFTER I washed them.  Still  pretty stained and nasty looking after riding around in hubby's vet truck for several years.

This project was super-easy and used materials that I already had around the house: spray paint, fabric remnants, and white glue.

The first step was to spray paint the frames and part of the drawer-fronts.  Please excuse the lighting.  The flash went off for some photos and not for others.  That really is the same color paint in both photos.  I have no idea what that pink artifact is.  Make sure you let them dry thoroughly before going to the next step or you will be cussing the smudges and fingerprints you made in your lovely paint job.

The next thing I did was adhere the fabric to the drawer fronts using a mixture of half white glue, half water.  I just painted it on with a regular brush, positioned the fabric where I wanted it (allowing for overlap on all sides), and painted over the top of the fabric with the glue mixture.  There is no need to let that first coat under the fabric dry first.  In fact, you don't want it to dry.  Painting another coat over top of the still wet fabric allows you to easily remove any air bubbles.  I don't have any photos of the actual process for one reason: Liam.  I did this while he was occupied with his puzzles in the other room and didn't want to draw attention to what I was doing by taking photos or taking any longer than absolutely necessary.  Let these dry overnight.  Again, don't touch them before they are thoroughly dry.

You could put another coat of the glue mixture on the following day, but I am impatient  decided that one was enough and proceeded to the next step: cutting off the excess.  This is a rotary cutting tool, used a lot by quilters.  I LOVE this tool.  I do a lot of sewing and crafting without patterns and this makes it easy to cut a nice straight line.  This thing is super-sharp and leaves a nice clean edge so I knew it would be perfect for this application.  I used this to cut the excess fabric from around all edges of the drawer, gluing any edges down that weren't completely adhered.

The drawers were then, essentially done, but do you remember the big green stain from the before photo? No?  Here it is again:

Inside that drawer on the bottom is a stain from a lovely equine product called Kopertox.  Again, this is what it looked like AFTER I scrubbed it.  To avoid getting any of this lovely green on my tri gear, I found this brand-new roll of contact paper in the closet.  It apparently came with the house...

And I lined the inside of the stained drawer.  But only the stained part, 'cause I'm lazy.  Besides, the purpose of the contact paper is function, not beauty.

And, once again, here's the finished project:

I love how well these turned out.  I thought of doing a collage with my race bibs on the drawer fronts, but since these will likely be used for a different purpose when we move next year, I wanted them to be able to fit in other rooms easily.  I continued to hoard my old race bibs for another day...

Monday, February 13, 2012

Training Log Feb 5-11: Recovery week?

Yeah, about that title... ::cough::bullshit::cough::

This training log is a really short one:
Tuesday I went to my first master's swim class and swam a total of 975yds.

That's it.  All week.

Well, that's it for training anyway.  I had my meeting with the auditor this week so a lot of time was spent making sure I had all my ducks in a row (I did, I just get nervous and have to check, double check, and triple check!) I am happy to report that my child-free time will now be for ME once again!

Just in time, too.  Marathon training officially kicks off this week!  I modified Hal Higdon's Advanced Marathon Training 1 plan to fit a multisport schedule.
The training whiteboard on my refrigerator.  Lets everyone know what's  going on for the week. 
This is what my first official week looks like.  Normally I would take Mondays off, but since I did so little last week, I feel like I should do SOMETHING.  So I'm going to get just a little extra time in the saddle and get my girly parts used to it again.  The bike session on Saturday in parentheses is optional.  When triathlon training starts in mid-March, this will no longer be an optional workout.  For now, I'm going to leave it up to how I feel.  Totals for this week should reach 120 minutes swimming + masters class, 90 minutes cycling + the optional 60, and 26 miles running.

I got a lot done on the organizing challenge this week.  I am loving my new drawers for my gear instead of the old "pile" system!


Stay tuned later this week for a totally non-fitness related tutorial on how I did this.  It was easy-peasy, I promise!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Organizing Challenge: Getting Started

Getting ready for this challenge, I dutifully took my before picture on February 1.  And then I didn't get them posted until Feb 9 (Organizing is always a challenge!).  So of course, I didn't start on the project until Feb 9 either.

Why is it that I have to make a mess to get rid of a mess? 
Using Org Junkie's tools, I printed out the PROCESS system, the lists of planning and declutter questions, and "Org Junkie's Tips for Parting With Your Clothes" (all found in her post here).

P= Plan of Attack
Here are her planning questions as I answered them:  (My area for this challenge is master bedroom)
1.  What do I want the purpose of my room or area to be? 
Sleeping, dressing, storage for clothing and training gear
2. What do I need in or near the room to serve that purpose?  
A bed (duh), clothing/jewelry/etc. confined to this room only, my training gear to be confined to this room.
3. What can I remove from the room? 
Storage boxes, wooden desk, lots of unneeded stuff!
4. What problems do I see with the room? 
We are currently using it like a closet for all the stuff we had to move from the rest of the house to make room for our son.  Also, the room is small, the closet is small, and between my husband and I we have a lot of clothing and gear that we use.  And yeah, we keep a lot of stuff that we don't.  Specific organizational problems include my hair bands (currently hanging on a dresser post), my training books and magazines (currently in a box buried in a pile), and hubby's hats (see below).  
These are SOME of my husbands hats.  This was the tote on the bottom of the pile in the corner.  How often do you think these get worn???
5. What organizational tools might solve these problems? 
Getting rid of excess stuff.  Drawers or shelves for extra gear.
6. What habits need to change to solve the organizational problem? 
Keeping things that we no longer use but think we "should" keep.  Putting things back where they belong instead of in a pile to do later.
Pretty much all of this stuff has a home, it just needed to be put there.  
7. What kind of a budget do I have to create the organized room of my dreams?  
Well, the organized room of my dreams is actually in the house we will be moving to in a little over a year.  But I'm sick of fighting the dysfunctionality I have right now, plus I don't want to take this all with us!  Since our new space will have completely different storage and organizational solutions (as well as challenges), I hope to spend very little to nothing on the current space.
8. What kind of timeline is necessary to organize the room? 
There are only 3 weeks left in the challenge!
9. What is my plan of action? 
Either run away screaming or consume copious amounts of wine...what do you mean that won't work? Oh, well then I guess it will be to take it a section at a time, starting with  my clothing.
10. Who can I ask to help me with this? 
Hubby- both to watch Liam and to go through his stuff.

I understand the concept of removing things from the room rather than shuffling them around, but with a toddler, I need to be able to close the door to the piles I am sorting.  The master bedroom is the only room in the house where that is possible.  The first thing I did was put away items that were "in limbo", just waiting to be put in their actual homes.  The rest items are being removed to the bed for purging and sorting as I work on each section.
The nice pile of extra hangers from discarded clothing.
Liam's idea of "helping". 
O=Organize into piles
Piles include donate/toss/sell/keep/relocate.
So far I have found items to donate to four different charitable organizations, made a pile for a spring garage sale (my mom is having one), thrown away the volume of a large kitchen trash bag, and relocated  several things.  My biggest problem with this, and when I put the "in limbo" items away, was to not organize the locations I was relocating them to as well.  This is how I usually get derailed in my organizing efforts.  I have trouble focusing on just one project, instead working on several areas at once and making a mess too big to handle.  I am concentrating very hard on just putting things away, then returning to the task at hand.
"Skinny" clothes to go to Goodwill.
Another Goodwill pile.  And I haven't even touched my hubby's clothes!
Since I am trying not to spend any money on this project, I have been scavenging the rest of the house looking for organizational solutions.  So far I have relocated a bookshelf to be used for my training related reading material, two plastic drawer units from the basement, and some plastic food containers for use inside drawers.
The containers I scavenged from the basement.  Stay tuned for how I dress them up.  
I realized sometime yesterday that I didn't even think about taking pictures of the stuff under the bed.  There are a couple plastic containers under there.  One is my "stuff to keep" and I'm not sure what the other is, maybe Dave's "stuff to keep"?  So that adds a third very scary area in this room.  At least the stuff is in containers, and I hope that since (for the most part) I can't even tell you what's there, that I will be able to get rid of most of it.

I've made very good progress considering I've only been at it a couple days.  But, I spent a lot of time on each of these two days.  I hope to continue to hit it hard this weekend once Dave gets home and can do stuff with Liam.  I also hope to get him to go through some of his stuff AND get rid of some of it.  Wish me luck on that last one!

Random Five Friday & Running for Sherry

1.  It's been another warm February week here in Minnesota. (Relatively speaking, if you're from Florida you would have been wearing a parka.)  I didn't get to train the first few days of this week as I was busy preparing for the audit, but I enjoyed being able to go out and about without a coat on anyway.

Notice there is NO SNOW in this picture.  This is Minnesota, this is NOT NORMAL!

2.  I had my first masters swim class on Tuesday and it was AWESOME!  I am not the slowest person there as I feared.  There is a huge range of abilities and I fit comfortably in the middle.  This class only lasts for the four weeks of February and I am going to be sad when it is done.  I hope they are able to offer it again.

3.  My house is a disaster area after having company this past weekend and then focusing on paperwork through Wednesday.  I feel like I will never catch up, even though I know I will (eventually).

4.  I stopped doing my food journal at the end of January and I put the couple pounds I lost right back on.  I need to find an easier way to journal.  All the apps I've tried are time-consuming, but I never seem to have my paper journal handy when I need it.  Photos maybe?  This will be a work in progress.

5.  I need some new meat-, gluten-, lactose-free recipes.  I am feeling particularly uninspired this week.  I would love to hear your favorites!

Running for Sherry
Our bibs for the virtual run, printed and ready to go.
Sherry Arnold was the Montana mom/teacher/runner that was killed by two men while on her regular Saturday morning run just over a month ago.  Her cousin (SUAR) has set up a virtual run to honor Sherry's memory.  My family will be running.  I encourage you to join as well.  You can find the details of that virtual run here:

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Organizing is always a challenge!

There are always so many fun challenges going on in blogworld to help keep you accountable.  Whether you want to do a food journal (like I did last month, thanks to Amanda for hosting!), not buy anything new, remember to appreciate others in your life, organize a room, run a certain number of miles - whatever you can think of, someone is probably hosting a challenge!

I am often tempted to take on more than one at a time, but have decided to limit myself to one per month.  This month, I am doing Organizing Junkie's 29-Day Organizational Challenge.  As part of this challenge, posting "before" pictures of the room you want to organize are optional.  I am slightly embarrassed by broadcasting pictures of my bedroom in it's current state, but I also know that it will motivate me to put a lot of effort into this challenge.

You may be asking what this has to do with my usual health and fitness topics.  Well, my training clothing and gear makes up about half of the unorganized clutter in this room.  I would really like to find a way to make this small bedroom functional for both me and my husband, since there is no other space in this tiny house to keep this stuff either!  (We already store the Burley bike trailer and the jogging stroller in the dining room.  Yeah, I know.  But it's a small house with storage issues.)

Ok, (gulp) here are the pictures.  Please don't judge too harshly...I promise the rest of the house doesn't look like a hoarder lives here!

This dresser is full of various workout clothing.  The stuff on top of the dresser has no home, the pile on the side is clothing that was only worn for an hour or so and can be worn again, the stuff on the coat rack is various workout gear. The file boxes and the boxes to the far left are business records that I am currently working with for an impending audit.  They do have a home and will be put back there when the audit is over. 

Bins under the dresser house my running and cycling shoes.

Closer view of the junk on top of the dresser.

This corner scares me.

Jewelry organization- I need a few more pins, but otherwise I like this system.
My hubby's nightstand.
My hubby's stuff on top of the dresser that houses my shorts, t-shirts, and unmentionables.

This corner scares me even more.  

Most of these bins are clothes that don't currently fit (I know, I know).  The other stuff is fabric for sewing projects.  That used to be kept in my son's closet.  But then we had a kid and everything got shuffled around to make room for all the "baby stuff".   

This pack-and-play will be going away early this spring.  My mom is having a garage sale.  Right now it is just another horizontal surface to catch things that fall out of ...

...the overstuffed closet.  And yes, I keep the mirror in the closet instead of hanging it up.  My son pulled it off the wall one day and it hasn't been put back up yet. 

Organized purses!  At least I'm doing one thing right!

Dirty clothes basket and random sweaters piled on top of the extra blanket basket.