Bric-a-Brac Exorcism

There is something zen about an empty counter.

When we put out house on the market in Grafton, we had to de-clutter our house. We live a life relatively free of nick-naks or bric-a-brac, but Patrick and I both remarked how much we preffered living the clutter free life.

When we set up our house in Westborough, we decided to start our new life as clutter free as possible. Our kitchen counters are almost entirely devoid of appliances, decorations or kitchen tools. Our kitchen table and island are equally barren.  We store everything in cabinets, drawers or closets- our work surfaces aren’t for storage.


I’m not saying that this wasn’t a hard adjustment. It took months to train Patrick and myself not to toss a bag, coat or pile of stuff onto the island or the counters. We helped each other to see the benefits of keeping everything tucked away, and now, almost a year later, our counters are usually free of debris.

When I glance up from dinner, I don’t have to see an overflowing bag reminding me of the school papers that I haven’t graded. All of our coats wait for us by the door, and Patrick always knows where to find his keys. (Well, almost…)  Jasper’s school bag is never missing. It is a whole new way of life for us, and it makes mornings exponentially easier.


Jasper enjoys our zen life, too. We keep our tables free of decorations, as he has been known to climb and explore (destroy) anything that we leave out. I choose to view this re-arranging of clutter as his enforcing of zen. After we finish an activity he sings the “clean up” song and puts his toys away.

Doesn't Greg look zen?
Doesn’t Greg look zen?

Despite these awesome changes,  our bedroom is still messy. Confession: we don’t make our bed… (Sorry, mom, it just never made sense.) …and Jasper’s playroom is immune to our zen efforts, despite some cute bins and plenty of storage.

Still, I love our clean, empty counters and the feng-shui we have going on in our living room. Hey-  small progress is still progress!


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