5/7 Organizational Rehab, Part 2: The Terrible Secret

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{Missed part one? Click here to catch up!}

I made a horrible mistake and it’s time I confess it. I brought a woman into our lives with the purpose of hiding our dirty little secrets. I thought here swaying hips would distract us from what was really going on. I thought she would hide our problem, but instead she just made the problem bigger and more horrifying.

This is Hula Girl and our problems have become too big for her to hide.

It all started when Dana and I moved into our small but awesome apartment. The landlord pointed out a little nook and said, “It can be an office.” If there was more storage space in our apartment maybe it could have been. If Dana and I liked working in small, dark, confined spaces while staring at the wall, perhaps it could have been. But instead of making an entire office we thought it would make the perfect work nook. Here we would store and access all of our work stuffs. “Hey Honey, where are those documents?” “File cabinet in the work nook, of course.” Crafting supplies, reference books, printer would all easily found in the work nook. It was such a simple idea. So what happened?

Well, we moved in and got most of our apartment put together. So much so that we felt we could have a house warming party. But the day before the party there was still a bunch of random things here and there with no home. So we stuck them in the one area of our small apartment that would be out of our guests’ way, the work nook. Oof, it looked bad. So on the day of our party, when I saw the cool Hula Girl beaded curtain for sale, I thought she was the short term answer to all our esthetic prayers. Little did I realize what monster I was about to unleashed.

The party was a great success. But when it was over our apartment did not get any bigger and we kept accumulating more stuff. What was supposed to be a nook of calm became a nook of dread.

What’s the international sign for “horrible embarrassment”?

“Hey Honey, where are those documents?” “Oh god, I don’t know. It might be behind the boxes somewhere in the file cabinet. If I felt I could reach the cabinet when I went to put them away…” What was supposed to be a Work Shangri-la became a shangri-AAAAHHHH!!!! (Oooh that was some high-brow word play, wasn’t it.)

For over a year we lived in this misery. Fearing the process of printing something and reaching for the printer cord on our tiptoes. Until one day our organization savior Joey came back into our lives. I had the pleasure of performing with Joey years ago when we were actors in Chicago. She always lit up a room with her positive attitude. Odd thing about Joey is, she hasn’t aged a day since then. I think it’s because she has a disposition that can bring the same enthusiasm and fun attitude to her organizing business Brass Tacks Organization as she does to entertaining a sold-out audience.

Have you ever seen 2 people having this much fun throwing crap out?

I don’t know how it’s possible, but she made organizing fun. She’s so darn practical and sensitive to what should be kept, what should be tossed and the stinking sentimentality we give to random things. Joey’s enthusiasm is contagious. She walks in the door and is psyched to transform your space for the better. She leads by example and in no time has your sleeves rolled up as you both trudge through the chaos.

She is the perfect organizing partner because she also believes in using creativity as currency. Never have I worked with someone so budget-conscious before. She had several great ideas for items we could purchase, but was able to quickly pare down to the essentials based off of our needs and budget.

Over the course of the day, we weeded through all the trash, paper, files, crafting supplies, electronic cords, and everything else and ruthlessly decided what to keep, throw away, or donate. Joey was amazing about helping us decode how to best file all of our crazy paper in a way that would be maintainable and arranging things in a way that was not only smart, but visually stylish too!

Yup we had that much stuff to throw out or donate by the end of the day.

I’m so grateful to Joey at Brass Tacks. I’m also so proud of us. I know I should be, because I know Joey is proud of us. You might think I’m just singing Joey’s praises as an organizer, because she is a great friend, but you would be wrong. I sing Joey’s praises because when Joey helps you organize she’ll become one of your greatest friends too.

AND JUST PEEP THESE AFTER SHOTS! It’s so sooooooothing and calm and pretty, right?

Stay tuned for more of our journey from clutter to calm, and Joey’s best organizational tips for youuuuuu!

Christen Moynihan is the Editorial Manager/ Accounts Goddess/ Unicorn Wrangler for The Broke-Ass Bride. Lover of swimming, tattoos, elephants, bourbon and Champagne. Culinary crusader, adventure advocate, kitty cuddler. Nomad, extroverted-introvert and geek fo lyfe. High-fives are her currency. Affiliate links, like the ones in this post, help make her real money so she can keep rocking life, broke-ass style. Play along on Twitter (BrokeAssChris10), Pinterest (brokeasschris10) and Instagram (brokeasschris10). If you're curious about the world of affiliate marketing, check her out at Bourbon & Sparkle
  • Oh my! I need her to come help with my entire house!!!!! Good grief, she did a great job 🙂