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Helen from Clutter Rescue shared this video at a conference I attended earlier this year, Helen was sharing her ideas and tips on keeping an organised office.  She showed us this video from LifeEdited Founder Graham Hill at TED 2011.   Top 3 tips Edit ruthlessly Think small Make multifunctional It will help you to […]

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  • Great video! I am a declutterer from way back! Love culling and sorting. I can pack our life up in a day to move house. It’s a good feeling living simply with just what you need and a few pretties for the soul! A-M xxReplyCancel

  • brella

    wow! I love this! it really sums it. Thanks for sharing this with us. ReplyCancel

  • Lisa

    Hey Katrina – yet again you blow us away with your inspirational finds.  After moving into our house 12 yrs ago – I have finally this year (thanks only to your blog & inspiration) got rid of the last of those “boxes”.  Our “first home” was 1/2 the size of our rental house!!   And would you believe, we have actually during this time “hired” a storage unit to store our “stuff” while we renovated.  Most of that “stuff” we stored, never came back into the house, but we paid $100s to store it – ABSOLUTELY CRAZY!

    Re the EDITING, I find that I cannot sit down & “declutter” but I CAN look at your “pictures” and reorganise a space without realising that I am decluttering.  I get fired up by a good organisational session but I feel deflated if I have to just “declutter”.  So… keep the pics coming! BTW, this week’s organising session saw me declutter no less than a box of batteries that did not work + 15 torches + 5 headlights.  This still left us with 4 torches + 4 headlights for camping & we could probably even EDIT some more :) 

    Good luck in the USA – hope it is everything + more.  We know that this has come at a difficult time.  Hoping that you find the mind space to actually find the JOY in this very special moment. You SO DESERVE IT!  xxReplyCancel

  • whiningattheworld

    Thanks. I really need this t the moment.ReplyCancel

  • Holly N.

    That was awesome and definitely a motivator as we will be moving soon.  I still have things in boxes from several moves ago.  ReplyCancel

  • Jenna @ Reunite Child Assist

    Wow. That’s some serious multi-functionality going on in that apartment! My partner and I are always moaning about how tiny our 2 bed workers cottage is…really, it’s just too full of ‘stuff’. This weekend, I’m going to edit. Starting with that box I’ve been dragged from Brisbane, to Hamilton Island, to Melbourne, to Dublin, to Brisbane. Lol.ReplyCancel

  • Erin Thomson

    Wow!! That is really inspirational! Thank you so much for sharing!! I know I definitely have a few of “those” boxes about the house!ReplyCancel

  • Roslyn

    I really need some expert help . As I am hopelessReplyCancel

  • I personally don’t have much problem getting rid of boxes of stuff. Moving thigns around the home is quite commonplace for me. I just find it very irritating when I’ve thrown something away only to realise that I actually needed it a few days down the road! But that’s life for you, and whatever items in your house have gone through the removals process, should stay removed!ReplyCancel

I have a cupboard in the kitchen dedicated to all our glasses, cups and drink bottles. Previously it has suited us well, however now that I have started drinking coffee I find myself having to get on the floor to get the cups at the back of the cupboard.  If I could I would change […]

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  • Una05

    They look like very cool organisers – could also use the in the caravan – always looking for good storage ideas there!

  • That is sooooo cool!! Could you use these for Tupperware?!ReplyCancel

    • For sure and I think the dividers would make it easy to organise the lids too!ReplyCancel

  • These would be great for the pantry too!
    Do you know the pricing on the 3 different sizes?ReplyCancel

    • I have a link in the post which will take you to the page to see the sizes and prices of all 3 JReplyCancel

  • MummyToFive

    Ooh these would be awesome for the pantry! I’ve just cleaned out our cupboards underneath and this would make it so much easier for the kids to get their plates and cups! ReplyCancel

    • They are really child friendly too, they won’t hurt their little fingers, the dividers and base are plastic and because they are secure it won’t flip or fall.ReplyCancel

  • These are a brilliant idea!  I would definitely plan my kitchen around them!  I could use them in a cupboard or three!ReplyCancel

    • LOL or 3, I was thinking of using it to organise my baking trays too.ReplyCancel

  • Parcobooks

    I so need these for my Tupperware cupboard.  ReplyCancel

    • They would work really well, especially having the dividers you can keep the lids neatly organised.ReplyCancel

  • That’s such a great solution!!! I’m sold because I really need that for my mugs too!! ReplyCancel

    • There are a few different sizes, so you can get one that suits the sizes of your cupboardsReplyCancel

  • What a great way to access the back of the cupboard!! I have stuff stored at the back too that I never use, so this would solve that problem big time. Thanks for sharing Katrina!ReplyCancel

  • I love that! Looks so much prettier and organised.ReplyCancel

  • Jo

    You inspired me today & I have spent the best part of the day reorganising my cupboards, unfortunately we dont have a Howards Storage here so I have just used containers on wheels not perfect but so much bettter Thanks again for the inspiration. :)ReplyCancel

    • So pleased you were inspired, Howards do have the option that you can buy online, just in case you feel you ‘need’ it JReplyCancel

  • Farmers Wifey

    Well hello Miss organised!!!!!  Love the after photos so much xReplyCancel

  • Sarah

    I use these everywhere in my kitchen! Love them to bits.  Best place has been under the kitchen sink making storing all of my cleaning products a breeze :)ReplyCancel

  • Carissa

    Omg I need these so badly!!! Know what I will be going to buy tomorrow!ReplyCancel

  • Oh no I just measured my cupboards and they are only 44cm deep not 50.8 :(
    Are the tracks the full length? – they may work in the pantry instead with a little overhangReplyCancel

  • THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! This is exactly what I need for the same cupboard in my house – off to check measurements in my cupboard now!!ReplyCancel

    • Don’t forget to keep the hinges on the doors in mind as you need enough room for the drawers to pull out JReplyCancel

  • Kate_oshea

    I want these in my cupboards, but they are seriously expensive ReplyCancel

    • I think they are worth it, we are going to stay in this house for many years to come with no plans to upgrade kitchen anytime soon, this is a great alternative.ReplyCancel

  • Sara Giambruno

    that’s funny: your before shot still looks quite organised to me!!!! 😉
    Love your tips Katrina :)ReplyCancel

  • Emily fUNK

    Hi , I saw this and got inspired, i was unable to afford to buy the howards storage version, so I used a dish drainer It keeps the plastic plates orginised with room for cups and lids. :) if you are intersted i can email you some photoes ReplyCancel

  • me too

    I would’ve put the mugs up the top and the plastic wear on the bottom, problem solved.ReplyCancel

  • GannonJane Cohen

    are system is all over the place : ) but i like the idea of lids off drink bottles etc. also could you ask your reader on a good travel mug system, we loved our old tupperware ones, not impressed with the new style.ReplyCancel

  • Arabesque

    I’d love advice on dealing with deep corner cupboards and a deep corner pantry. Everything gets pushed to the back and they are so awkward!ReplyCancel

  • Rebekah

    We have installed a extra ‘mug shelf’ in our cupboard. It is a little higher than our tallest mug, and it has created a whole extra shelf in our cupboard. I could see that working really well here too as there is a lot of wasted space above the cups. Love the pullout drawers too.ReplyCancel

  • Sherelle Lock

    Just wondering how many cups/glasses you allow per person? I feel I have too many but how many is enough?ReplyCancel

    • Katrina - The Organised Housewife

      Great question Sherelle! We have one cup/ glass and one coffee cup per person in our household and then i have a few extra’s for visitors.ReplyCancel

I must say I am so pleased to be back to my weekly meal planning, during the past few weeks I wasn’t planning our meals as usual.  I didn’t meal plan because I just didn’t have the mindset to think and I didn’t have the energy to visit the grocery store for a long period.  In […]

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  • Whatever Michelle Bridges tells me I can eat! lol. Your menu plans always look so good Katrina. Coveting that cake big time!!ReplyCancel

  • Kirsty

    I have a revolving fortnightly meal plan as I find thinking of new meals each week too hard.  Here is mine:
    Week 1
    Monday – Cottage PieTuesday – Bacon, brocolli and carrot rissotto
    Wednesday – Egg fried rice (meat free meal)
    Thursday – Hawaiian pizza and home made potato chips
    Friday – Spaghetti bolognaise
    Saturday – date night (buy takeaways once the kids are in bed!)
    Sunday – Easy tea – bacon and eggs on toast
    Week 2
    Monday – Sausages, corn cobs, veges
    Tuesday – roast chicken, roast potatoes, mini corn cobs, gravy and mixed veges
    Wednesday – easy tea – soup and toast/cheese on toast
    Thursday – Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, veges
    Friday – Honey pork noodle stirfry
    Saturday – Mince, vege and rice dish
    Sunday – easy tea – spaghetti and eggs on toast
    I change this menu every now and then, once we are sick of it or when the season changes.ReplyCancel

  • julie mcdonald

    The food is always good here – I have much more success with packet muffins that from scratch ones.  I think the packet mixtures are much better than they used to be – no one can tell the difference at my house and I can have a batch whipped up in 10 minutes and on a plate after 20!
    We are having Thai Green Curry tonight but that  rice may be on the menu later in the week.  ]

    Cheers – Joolz ReplyCancel

    • Ooh Thai Green Curry sounds delicious. The fried rice is really easy to make, hope you enjoy it.ReplyCancel

  • The food items really look tasty and mouth watering… Specially loved the fried rice…ReplyCancel

This is a very quick and easy meal to prepare, make as per the recipe or simply search through your fridge to see what vegetables you have on hand, really any vegetable can be added to this dish. I only add a little dash of soy sauce to the rice mixture while in the frying pan, as […]

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In just over 2 weeks I will be on my way to New York to BlogHer’12. I am REALLY looking forward to the conference and visiting NEW YORK CITY!!  I would like to say a very big thank you to Howards Storage World who are helping me get there. I was actually worried as my mind has been […]

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  • MummyToFive

    Ooh I’m so jealous! I wish you could swish me up inside one of those bags and take me with you Kat!! Your going to have the bestest time over there and take lots and lots and lots of pics!!! ReplyCancel

  • enjoy your trip. I love having checklists for travelling. Travelling alone isn’t so bad as long as you are organised.  That tree is pretty but sorry I doubt you’ll see it like that now since its summer over there.  Blooms like that usually occur during Spring.ReplyCancel

  • Utterly Organised

    Hi Katrina, you will LOVE New York – I am so jealous!! Make sure that you visit Magnolia Bakery for a cupcake, they are delicious.ReplyCancel

  • Cat

    NYC is awesome!! – we’ve been twice in the last couple of years, with kids.  We last went in March/April, when our kids were 8 and 10.  Central Park is amazing, just gorgeous.  Hope you get to do lots of exploring as well as meeting lots of great people at the conference.  CatReplyCancel

    • Im really looking forward to central park and seeing all the lights at night JReplyCancel

  • Oohh.. How exciting, Kat! I’m sure you will have tons of fun at BlogHer and yes, will learn tons too.. Can’t wait to hear all about it! And yes, this printable looks really neat as well. Thanks, Kat!ReplyCancel

    • I’m going to have a blast, really looking forward to it, thanks Prerna JReplyCancel

A few weeks ago my youngest was asking me to make some creamed rice for her, a perfect winter dessert.  My previous attempts at making creamed rice was cooking the rice normally (with water) then stirring through some cream and condensed milk prior to serving, however I wanted to try to find a ‘creamy’ creamed […]

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  • jess

    This sounds great Katrina, my youngest has only two teeth so far so looks perfect for her!ReplyCancel

  • Ruth Drew

    My daughter loves creamed rice!  I am going to make this for dessert tonight!  Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Just a Tip: put the rice in at the start before bringing it to boil because if you put the rice into the boiling milk it can retard the rice and stop it from becoming soft and creamy. This is my all time favourite recipe – but only if my dad makes it!!ReplyCancel

  • This is my mum’s creamed rice recipe in the pressure cooker.  It is simple and FAB!  I want to try yours but try this one.  It is amazing!

    I haven’t done any conversions but I am sure you will be able to work it out …….?

    1 pint milk  (600mls)

    2 oz sugar

    1 1/2 oz rice

    vanilla and dob of butter

    Put milk, butter and vanilla in cooker and bring to the boil.

    Add sugar and stir well and then add rice

    Pressure for approx. 15 mins.

    It does thicken when cooled.

    Just watch it as sometimes the milk can boil over

  • Brenda

    We always had creamed rice hot like a veggie in school. Now my son loves it as they had it in school too (thanks Mrs Obama for deleting this from their meals). But I am having a hard time making it so I hope these will work for me. ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Young

    I use the Thermomix rice pudding recipe from the Everyday Cookbook. I thought it tasted a bit too eggy so now I make it without eggs. It still sets and my son often asks for it for dinner…sometimes I let him.ReplyCancel

  • Angelina Riegner

    Kat, you must try the Maple creamed rice recipie from ThermOMG, a thermo website. Yummo!!!! and easy peasy too xReplyCancel

  • David

    would these recipes work in a rice cooker?ReplyCancel

  • Raelee

    … in a saucepan put left over “cooked” rice (approx. 1C); add an egg to every Cup of milk (less if large eggs); drizzle of vanilla; beat and add 1Tblsn corn flour as it warms up; stir regularly with whisk until thickened; remove from heat; stir in large Tblsn honey (sweeten to taste).ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer Pickard

    How is any of Mrs Obama’s business what your kids eat at school. Or is it like the UK where school dinners are provided?

    I have made creamy rice for years and years. It always took soooo long to cook.
    It was only after watching Masterchef that I found out that sugar retards the cooking of the rice. Sugar needs to be added right at the end of the cooking unless you really want it to cook for over an hour. This recipe really cooks in 35 mins. Oh and I cant afford the vanilla bean – real vanilla essence works a treat.

    Master chef’s rice pudding
    700 ml milk
    135 g Arborio rice – rinsed and drained
    1 vanilla bean – split, seeds scraped

    Add the milk, rice, vanilla bean and seeds to a non-stick saucepan.
    Bring to the boil and simmer uncovered for 30–35 mins, or until creamy and the rice is tender, stirring regularly.
    Add 40 g caster sugar and stir for about 2 mins until dissolved.
    ***On no account add the sugar earlier because sugar retards the cooking of the rice***ReplyCancel

This is a guest post by Linda Andersom from Mums on the Go You are travelling on a crowded plane with two small children. Your toddler manages to spill juice all over the front of his clothes only seconds before your baby pukes on hers. You are rummaging through your carry-on bag with one hand, […]

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  • Kate

    Lollipops for my kids are at the top of my packing list. Regardless of their age (my kids are 11, 9 & 6), lollipops are a lifesaver for kids with helping them equalise their ears on take-off and landing. The sucking of the lollipop easily takes care of ‘popping’ their ears. And if they’re not old enough, give your toddler/baby a bottle or drink with a straw to achieve the same result.ReplyCancel

    • Daniella

      We have been caught short a couple of times and the descent is about to happen – we have a “sucking thumbs’ competition between my 7 year old and myself. The aim is to get it as wrinkled as possible. Works to stop popping. Can get funny looks on the plane but I am usually past caring.ReplyCancel

  • Kelly

    This blog was just in perfect timing for my trip from Bris to Melb on my own with Mr 3yr old and Mr 8 mth old – Thank you for the many ideas as I was starting to stress about the thought.  Flying with one child was easy but never having flown with 2 I just didn’t know what to expect.ReplyCancel

    •  have a great trip to Melbourne with your little ones. My personal experience has always been that the more organised I am before the flight the more calm and happy the exerience is for all of us … especially if I am flying alone with them. I am sure Mr 3 will be a wonderful helper :) and if it all goes pear shaped … breathe deeply and remember the day will end! LOL   Happy travels – LindaReplyCancel

  • Great timing for me also as we’re travelling UK to NZ next month with 4.5 and 2.5 yr olds.  Toys that I found priceless on the last flight were coloured pipe cleaners, plasticine, triangle shaped coloured pencils (so they didn’t fall off) and a couple of favourite stories.  Tip A – insist that favourite stuffed toys go into the hold.  These were my biggest bug bear to try and keep hold off during transit!

    Thanks for your ideas – zip lock bags are awesome!ReplyCancel

    •  I love your tips about triangle shaped pencils/crayons! I will be adding that to my packing lists in future :)  Have a great trip to NZ next month and hope zip lock bags make your carry-on luggage easier to work with during the flight. Linda ReplyCancel

  • Rachael Edwards

    We had a few plane trips when our third child was just a baby. We also had an 18 month old and a 3&1/2 year old, so 2 very young children to occupy. Probably the best advice we were given was to break the trip into 15 minute blocks. For every 15 minutes you need one snack and one activity, which will take about 5 minutes each, leaving you with 3 or 4 mins of boredom to deal with before they’re ready for another toy or snack, so a 2 hour flight you want 8 snacks and 8 activities/toys, though you could probably double up on a few. Stickers and colouring books are absolutely awesome!ReplyCancel

  • JB Perth

    Having just flowing with Miss 3 and Master 5 – spare clothes are a must for yourself as well as kids.  If they vomit, it is usually over you too!  Also take old thin towel (found old cloth nappies great) and face washers (with plastic bag).  These can be used as bibs when they eat to catch things falling off the tray, wipe hands & faces, clean up vomit, endless!  Make sure you are happy to throw them away.ReplyCancel

    •  great suggestions! I always laugh when my husband wears a pale coloured t-shirt when flying with us and then complains at how dirty he is on arrival!!  Nothing I wear of my kids are wearing is “precious” as who knows what will happen to it during our travel day 😉  LindaReplyCancel

      • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

        This sounds really bad (because I generally abhor matching outfits) but I dress my girls in matching outfit for flights (they only have one matching outfit, it’s become their ‘flying uniform’) when I am taking them solo. It helps me see them if they run off, and people know they belong together, and I figure if one gets lost at the airport I can point to the other sister and say “She’s dressed just like this”.ReplyCancel

  • KJ

    I never dress my kids in clothes I would be sorry to throw out, and change my own shirt to an old one on the plane. And yes, on long haul you need two changes! Having had an 18-month-old do a spectacular fountain vomit over herself and me, I was very pleased to put the whole lot in a bin bag. I also pack a lightweight bassinet or stroller blanket for each child (ours are 2, 4 and 6yrs old) for something clean to lay their head on in transit lounges, as they seem to collapse to the floor at the gates! Also… whilst not related to carry-on, stagger your meals if you are flying with your partner by requesting one meal at the beginning of the food service, so one parent can be (mostly) done before the other tray arrives 😉ReplyCancel

  • Wonderful tips, taking them all on board, about to head off to the States (from Aus) and taking my 7 and almost 3 year old. I need all the help I can get!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Li

    some of the toy manufactures put out small toy catalogues, I’ve picked up a Thomas and Friend train one and the Matchbox cars, all free of course. Found them in the toy sections. Small and compact to keep in my handbag, great for my 3 year to read on our flight to HK. ReplyCancel

  • BelCC

    What great ideas!! We don’t travel a lot but I’m actually planning on implementing some of them to just condense the about of stuff we cart around when out and about with our kids!!ReplyCancel

  • Very helpful :) We’re travelling in June! While we’ve travelled with our son as a 3 month old and as a 17 month old, we’re going to attempt it with him as a 2.5 year old and I never feel like we’ve mastered it because his needs/personality etc change each time!ReplyCancel

    • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

      Hi Kez, I personally thing 2.5 is the age when the kids start to be great travellers. They are over the excitement of wanting to walk everywhere, and activities such as colouring or movies can hold their attention for longer than 30 seconds! Good luck.ReplyCancel

  • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

    I always take a spare plastic bag for garbage, as the flight attendants never collect it regularly enough. I clean up as I go. I take a carry on bag that can fit under the seat rather than in the locker, so I can access things when the seat belt sign is on, and get us all packed up as we are taxiing along the runway. As most of my travel is international, I always keep passports and pens in an outside pocket for easy access when I have a moment to fill in the forms. Sometimes it takes three or four attempts! If I do the ‘new toy for the plane’ tactic, I always buy the same thing, because a different one will guarantee fights. And I take what I can carry myself – if I let my kids take a carry on bag for themselves, guess who ends up carrying it?ReplyCancel

  • Rach

    Thanks for the extra tips! We fly next week to Quebec Canada with a 5, 4, & 10 month old (& my grandma with dementia). Im starting to think we are crazy! This tips certainly help though :-)ReplyCancel

  • Louise

    Great tips! I second the change of clothes for parents as when a small child tips over their drink, it WILL land on you. A backpack with leash for toddlers can save your sanity in a crowded airport, especially when your stroller is in Oversize Luggage and you are trying to simultaneously grab luggage off the carousel while keeping hold of your little one.ReplyCancel

  • Maria

    Great tips:) Other things I’ve found are: Take two bags: one for the things you definitely need (food, activities, and wipes mainly) goes under the seat. The other bag has the might-needs, and goes in the overhead locker (the nappy bag, spare clothes, and baby paracetamol (which I’ve used surprisingly often!)). Agree with spare adult clothes. I try to pack spare kids clothes that are interchangeable between them all. The other thing for toddlers is a sleeved bib- goes on at the start and doesn’t come off until the end! Finger puppets and stickers are great activities.ReplyCancel

  • Alecia

    We found that always having a bottle/sippy cup drink on hand for babies/toddlers, or lollypops for older kids is great, give them to them as we are taking off and landing to stop their ears from hurting.ReplyCancel

  • Jo

    Totally agree with ziplock bags – all my stuff goes into individual ziplock bags! I also carry small spare ones for leftover snacks in the airport that they usually ask for 5mins after getting on the plane! Ir handy for stashing that half eaten Lollypop that they will ask for again!

    I always packed a separate nappy, disposable change mat, small wipes & anti bact lotion inside a nappy disposable bag. I knew each individual bag had everything I needed to grab and go.
    Re: meals if travelling with two adults – get one of the adults a “special meal” so that they can eat at same time as kids meal and then the other adult can eat once everyone else is finished and settled.
    And I never travel without paracetamol and nurofen onboard the plane. You would be surprised how often you need it.ReplyCancel

  • Mel

    Having travelled to the Uk from Perth with 2 year old twins I would say I agree with all of the above! We also had 2 nappy pouches that fold out into a mat. They hold wipes and 2 nappies and made it super easy to grab and head to the bathroom. We also downloaded wiggles episodes on our ipad – thank goodness as my girls were too short to see the screen so the ipad was a life saver. We also used the cups, magazines and anything else on the plane as a toy – to supplement the activities we took on board.ReplyCancel

A few weeks ago we had some friends visit to celebrate their youngest little mans 1st birthday.  I offered to make his birthday cake, as I love decorating cakes.  I spent some time searching for the right cake to make, but then a few days before my oven stopped working.  Eek. Our friends were on […]

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  • brella

    this looks awesome :-)ReplyCancel

  • Vcupitt

    Even “I” could manage this one.ReplyCancel

  • Susan Nitz

    How did you manage to get the kit kat’s to stay in place before you put the ribbon on?ReplyCancel

    • Kathryn

      I just leant them up with a slight slant and then when you wrap the ribbon around it brings them all up standing tallReplyCancel

  • Lisa

    Looks awesome, although I would use real cjocolate not yucky white stuff.  What a great idea, think I’ll be using this one.ReplyCancel

  • michelle

    this is great but yes do u put icing mixture around the cake for the kit kats to stay in place?? also for the ribbon?ReplyCancel

    • Nani

       The instructions say to put a ribbon around the cake to keep the kit kats in placeReplyCancel

  • This looks divine!! I saw a picture of a cake like this online and was wondering just how it was made. I love white choc too.ReplyCancel

  • Ange

    I’ve seen this with jelly beans in the middle and a Dora figurine to ‘kidify’ it. Looks so simple. ReplyCancel

  • Hannahshorney

    Fantastic idea.ReplyCancel

  • Sunshine n Giggles

    WOW! What a fantastic idea! Love it.ReplyCancel

  • Busymumto5

    LOL I made a cake similar for my daughters birthday in June.. Except I bought 2 mud cakes, cut the icing off one and added whipped cream and mini m&m’s!!ReplyCancel

  • disturbed_angel89

    Awesome I am so going to do this for my 23rd birthday!ReplyCancel

  • Abanannagirl

    That was out of one of Donna Hay’s kids annuals, with a basic chocolate buttercake as the base.  I made it and used chocolate biscuits around the edge as they were cheaper (the Woolworths brand malt sticks, or you could use tv sticks if they were on special too)ReplyCancel

  • Shanballin

    I have also made this cake!! Got an awesome reaction! I made a red cake to surprise my 3y/o who loves red and iced it thickly with buttercream icing that I then stuck the kit kats (used milk choc) to! Then filled with m&m’s and Maltesers! Eyes nearly
    Popped out of the kids heads!!! ReplyCancel

  • My question is what did you do with the 2cm from each piece?? 😉ReplyCancel

  • Kirsty

    I have made this too… super easy and super effective :)ReplyCancel

  • omg so making this!ReplyCancel

  • Donna @ NappyDaze

    Love this! Will be using this very soon for the husband’s birthday xReplyCancel

  • Ive made this one too. It was a hit! But I used choc mud cake and original kitkat. I also iced the sides of the cake so the kitkats would stick to it.ReplyCancel

  • Julie

    Wow, looks divine, I am so doing this for my hubby’s bday in a couple of weeks!  How did you get the kitkats to stay up prior to the ribbon going on?

    • Julie, get a little bit of icing sugar add a few drops of water to make a gluey paste, it should then stay together.ReplyCancel

  • Jenny L

    Awesome idea….a favourite for young and old :)ReplyCancel

    • I love some of the other example being shared, use Maltesears instead of m&m’sReplyCancel

  • Emma

    I love this, I might make it just cause I canReplyCancel

  • Hello….I made this yesterday for hubbies birthday was so easy…but just need to say i needed 3 blocks of kit kats….. I love you, you have the best ideas. hope you are having a great day…. FB follower AnneReplyCancel

    • It such a simple cake, I hope your hubby liked it JReplyCancel

    • Kathryn

      I made it today actually and needed 3 blocks also. 2 just didn’t go all the way around. So glad I bought a 3rd block “just in case” b/c the checkout queues were looong! Was a huge success! Thank you for the idea. ReplyCancel

  • karennarelle

    Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou. I am going to make this for my little girls 4th birthday on Wednesday! ReplyCancel

  • MummyToFive

    I did this cake for hubby last year and it was chocolate overload and he loved it! I love how did it with white chocolate though, it looks so yummy! ReplyCancel

  • Mandy

    Showed my hubby this a few days ago and he made me one for my birthday yesterday. No white chocolate here though – yuck! ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn

    I “made” this cake today for my Miss3. It was a huge success. I did need 3 packets of the Kit Kat family break though. 2 blocks didn’t make it around the Woolworths cake. Thankful I bought 3 ‘just in case’. Phew! Also I used smarties because they have purple and pink in the packet unlike the M&Ms. The scattering of pink & purple smarties amongst all the other smartie colours then matched the purple ribbon holding up the kit kats. I also did a ‘double decker’ cake so that I didn’t have to cut the kit kats. I did Chocolate mud on the bottom (cut icing off to make cake flat) & white mud on top with jam and cream in the middle. Keep icing on the top cake to secure the kit kats & the smarties/M&Ms. LOVE LOVE LOVE. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE INSPIRATION. I love reading all your posts. ReplyCancel

  • Manda-Kate

    “Furry Friends” chocolates (upright – smooth side out) also look great as a border around a square or rectangle cake.ReplyCancel

  • My

    Thanks so much for sharing this idea.  My kids and my husband made me one of these cakes for my birthday.   They put tim-tams around the outside.  I loved the idea so much I am making one for my brother-in-law.  I’m going to try some of the suggestions from the comments and use malteasers on top and furry friends as the border.  ReplyCancel

  • SheenyB

    I made this cake for Mr 14 for his birthday, instead he wanted “Nans” chocolate cake, Skittles and the white Kit Kats (way too sickly let me tell you). It worked out beautifully and I had a very happy big boy.

  • […] the most colourful and simple birthday cake, a Kit kat M&M birthday […]ReplyCancel

  • Vanessa

    These are also great with fruit instead of m&m’s. For Xmas I made it with cherries on top. Next time I ‘ll try using strawberries.ReplyCancel

  • Deb - Blessed mum of 6

    I did the same with white Tim Tams for both my sons who turned 22 and 13 last week. So easy with the woolworths white choc mudcake, 2 pkts white choc tim tams, one large block of homebrand white chocolate and those little happy birthday chocs only less than $3 for about 16, I didn’t use them all and then sprinkles in the colours of the party decorations and those little etable silver things :)ReplyCancel

    • this is a fabulous idea, I just saw the Adrian Zumbo has a new Tim Tam range, white choc and raspberry, that would add a nice touch to the cake too!!ReplyCancel

  • Jacqueline

    You could also make this cake using chocolate fingers, orange flavour matchmakers or fudge fingers then top with Penny Pigs!ReplyCancel

    • Katrina - The Organised Housewife

      sounds good Jacqueline. What are Penny Pigs??ReplyCancel

      • Jacqueline

        Hello Katrina,
        ‘ Penny Pigs ‘ are a lovely lemon flavoured, foam sweet. Sold here in the UK by Marks & Spencer ( also known as M&S ). I think M&S are opening a store in Sydney sometime this year.ReplyCancel

        • Katrina - The Organised Housewife

          Ooh i will have to keep an eye out for when it opens, thank you.:)ReplyCancel

  • Dani

    Thanks for this simple idea. You have saved me. I will make this for my daughter’s 5th birthday tomorrow. It’s a godsend at this busy time of year.ReplyCancel

  • Di

    I made this cake this weekend and used 3 & 1/2 large blocks of kit kats, blocks must have shrunk since this post was first made. I bought the new chocolate swirl blocks. I also bought a tub of vanilla icing and spread it around the sides to make the kit kats stick before tying the ribbon around. Thanks for a quick and easy cake :)ReplyCancel

  • Ooh that sounds really good! ( i like the icing idea, Di!) Yes i think the blocks do shrink over the years LOL.:) I really love how colourful this cake is xReplyCancel

  • […] Cake – A cute Olaf cake.  See my kit kat cake tutorial here, but instead of adding M&M’s add blue icing and an olof toy on top.  image credit […]ReplyCancel

This is a guest post by Naomi from Seven Cherubs As a mother I like to be organised and prepared in advance as much as I can be for unexpected and expected events that happen with our family. One expected event that often happens in our home is that my husband travels away for work. […]

Continue Reading...

If you have been following you will know that my mum recently passed away very suddenly.  Mum and I were different in so many ways, I love baking she wasn’t a fan, my favourite colour is pink she can’t stand anything pink, I’m a minimilist and she lived in a very cluttered home.  Mum did […]

Continue Reading...

  • Josiebishop_1987

    Big hugs Kat! I wish you all the strength in this terribly hard time.  xxReplyCancel

  • Mamacass51

    We will all be here to support you through this, I am sure your Mum is watching over you as you all work through it.  Maybe she was too embarrassed to let you help her, as many suffer with the issue of hoarding and just don’t know how to get out of it or stop it.  I know my Mum, bless her sole, was also a hoarder.  Take care ?ReplyCancel

  • Katrina
    Sending prayers, love and ((HUGS)) your way Katrina. Its hard to lose someone that you love.
    Keep the strength that you have.
    Luv TracyReplyCancel

  • Mandy

    Wow!  I can’t even imagine.  Good luck with the task ahead of you.  I’m sure amongst the sadness of it all you will stumble along a few gems that make you smile. ReplyCancel

  • Suzy

    Wow, that’s a lot of boxes! We had a similar situation after my Mum died, but she had things hidden away in various cupboards, so we weren’t aware of the extent of the hoarding. Similar to your mum’s peanut butter jars, my mum had kept icecream containers and old towels. In some ways, those types of things were the easiest to get rid of, although sad because they were obviously important to her. The harder things to deal with were the special items like costume jewellery and clothes, as well as all my dolls from when I was a child. I felt that if she had kept these things for so long (40 years in some cases), then who was I to just get rid of them? In fact, some of these things have joined the clutter in my house and I have found it too emotional to deal with them. But it’s been a few years now, and you’ve inspired me to start to deal with some of my mum-clutter. We can do it together!ReplyCancel

  • Mariah

    Whoa. This was a major wake up call for me. I’m only 35 but I have a whole room of office & life stuff that I have been needing to go through/unable to get rid of… needless to say, your video just gave me the courage to grant my husband his long sought wish of letting him throw it all out. I’m calling him now. It will all be gone within a week I’m sure and we will be free. Free as you say to do the things I truly enjoy… I’m so sincerely sorry for your loss. I hope it brings a teeny bit of comfort to know that you just saved my life. Seriously. Love and prayers, MariahReplyCancel

  • Leungchoip

    Thank you for sharing this journey.  I have been working through my mums clutter for the past two years, a little at a time, so by the time she passes it won’t be such a problem.  You will be able to deal with everything, as long as you don’t overtax yourself and remember  that it has taken many years to get this way so it won’t disappear overnight.  Good luck.  Think how much happiness you will be able to bring to others as you donate/sell/keep and give away.  Thinking of you and looking forward to sharing the journey with you.  thanks.  ReplyCancel

  • Shell-B

    You are so brave to share this with us. Hope you do find solace in the fact that you  really do inspire so many.
    I am sorry for your loss and hope you will be kind to yourself to get through this.ReplyCancel

  • Susie F

    I am so sorry for ur loss Katrina…. this has hit a nerve with me as i sit here in my pj’s at 1.30 pm after feeding my 5 week old baby and trying to entertain my 3.5yo son while looking at all my storage boxes full of stuff, piles of mementos that need to be sorted and all of the mess and clutter that adorns my home – my name is Susie and I am a hoarder :)  I am sick of it and continually tell myself that i need to declutter and throw stuff and it is impacting on time with my family….. i too seem to go through things, moving them from one room to another in my attempt to declutter and become more organised………… i should be outside enjoying the sun with my kids, not worried about what to start on in my poor attempts to fix the state of our home.  I am inspired and I am going to follow you on your journey and hopefully will finally get to enjoy the more organised, less cluttered life that i dream of :)  much love to you and your familyReplyCancel

  • Eliza

    Katrina, Thanks for you sharing your story. It must be very hard for you on so many levels. Please take all the time you need – away from this blog, if you need to – to give the decluttering and grief time. Will enjoy reading your blog whenver you are able to come back to it. ElizaReplyCancel

  • Jazzmum

    hugs to you during this difficult time. ReplyCancel

  • Vicki (N.Z.)

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us.  I too am a hoarder and have taken this week off to clean out my worst room.  One thing we all need to remember is that people hold onto things for many different reasons.  During the war/depression our parents/grandparents probably never threw anything out, it possibly became a habit, and that may be why some of our parents/grandparents have so much stuff.  We were quite “poor” when I was a child and Mum reused everything she possibly could, which may be where my hoarding “habit” came from.  However I do not want my friends/family to have to clear it out after I am gone so I am starting!  Bless you and your Dad and your family as you go through this difficult time.ReplyCancel

  • Lisa

    Thanks Kat – you are such a lovely mentor to us who struggle (the non-born organised amongst us).  Alot of us are visual people and so your pics & videos are what inspire us.  (Your video has just inspired me to go & tackle something on my procrastination list!)  Please also know, that your taking a little bit of time away from the blog has allowed some of us with a big list to catch up!  Just finished my gift wrapping centre & it looks sensational…  please feel free to post some of the archives, as they might be oldies but they’re all goodies.  Looking forward to tackling the kids’ wardrobes & have also just got the lunchbox things a bit more organised in time for back-to-school.  Big hugs {{{ }}}.  **Absolutely love your work**  Big hugs also to your Dad & Brothers for them allowing us to follow your journey.ReplyCancel

  • So sorry to read about your Mum. What a hard journey. Thanks for being so open and honest, I shall be following along. Need to organise my own home, and shed the clutter as well. Thanks.  ReplyCancel

  • Leah

    Im sorry for your loss Kåt and I will follow your story. I love your blog and it has some wonderful inspiring information. All the best xReplyCancel

  • Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo

    oh sweetie… so very very hard.

    My husband and my parents are hoarders and I know how hard it is for them to throw anything out.  And how hard it is for me to see them keep such – to me – useless things.

    I will be following along and sending strength.ReplyCancel

  • Jo

    As everyone else has said I am sorry to hear about your mums passing.  I have never been a overly tidy person, although I am an organiser and mostly organised we live in semi organised caios. My small 3 bed home is FULL to the rafters with STUFF.  My hubby is a horder from a family of horders … (his mother gave me a box 2 years ago with EVERY little thing he had ever given her from kinda through to he was 18 and expected me to keep it as safely as she had done … it went in the bin – much to her discussed). Hubby keeps newspapers never reads them but keeps the whole thing.  The mess gets to me so much that once every couple of months I have an almost breakdown take a few days of work and through everything I can get away with out … the bad part about doing it this way is I loose important things.  I can also be part of the problem as I will see something on special and think “oh, I want that” and just get it soo we have soo much JUNK not stuff that we would ever need or use but just cus I thought it COULD oneday be usefull.  I am going to try and follow your recomendations and try and get my house organised.  Thanks and good luck with your parents place.ReplyCancel

  • Sam

    We recently lost a member of our family, and it truly has an unfathomable impact. The loss is very hard to come to terms with. Wishing you every strength. Take heart from your opportunity now to really help your Dad deal with an enormous task.

    Your blog has inspired so many small changes in my home that have made a big difference… and yes, there’s a way to go yet!! Many thanks. S ReplyCancel

  • Deborah

    My absolute love to you Kat. This particular blog has given me goosebumps. I am not a hoarder but my husband tries… despite the fact that he hated living in a “hoarders” home growing up! Its such a tricky, intensely emotional and overwhelming process to go through. I helped my husband in this process when his father passed away 7 years ago. It was hard – his mother (who no longer lived there as she had left a few years before hand) came in as my husband and his brothers were going through everything and throwing out most of it, She went off at my Husband and then me for getting rid of “important things”… I won’t go into how those things were NOT important, but I did my best to shelter my Husband and his brothers from the outburst. As it was not benefiting them as they were all ready to move on and do what their dad needed several years before his passing – he hated the clutter but didn’t know what to do about it, and they (my husband and his brothers) didn’t know how to help.
    Its amazing to be free of these “things”, as My husband tells me – he is so glad that he was able to go through all of those things. It was an almost “cleansing” from him, it was something he didn’t know how to do, until I could hold his hand and be there right with him.

  • Bianca

    Kat, thinking of you during these hard times and sending love. It’s a hard hard job and I hope you are able to find strength from family and friends. x

    bianca – a little delightful xReplyCancel

  • Tamkennedy

    What a tower of strength you are, I love getting your tips, thinking of you. I don’t know what I would do without my mum xxReplyCancel

  • Jenn

    OMG Katrina.  This is so close to my heart.  I too lost my mother suddenly and unexpected, in fact, a few days before your mum’s passing.  I know I must watch your video but cannot find the courage to hit the play button.  My mother was a hoarder and the thing that stops me at the play button is the photo of all those boxes.  This could be my mother’s house.  I am currently co-caring for my father who suffers early onset of Alzehemiers and soon to take on full time care.  Every time I step into my parents home, the pain is heightened as I realised that I am yet faced with the fact that I must dispose of all the stuff she couldn’t. I have to watch my father amongst this mess which only leaves him confused, overwhelmed, lost and anxious.  How sad that all the clutter was adding to my father’s Alzehemiers.  I’m also faced with the fact that I need to declutter my own home which I was slowly progressing with but now realise that I need to speed up the process.  My heart goes out to you and the bravery you have shown by facing it and tackling it.  There will come a day that I will hit that play button but for now your video sits quietly waiting for me.   

  • Alisha Luxford

    My mum and I read this together and both shed a little tear for you. 

    Mum tried to explain some of the thoughts that can go through your mind when you’re getting on in age, and especially menopausal. 

    You want to hang onto everything that has memories attached to it. You can get a bit sentimental about the strangest things. For instance, Mum crocheted my newborn twins some blankets, and she didn’t want to get rid of the tiny bundles of wool she had left. They were pretty much useless to make anything. 

    After seeing this blog and video, she can understand that really, it’s the memory she wanted to keep, not the wool. Perhaps that’s how your dear Mum started? 

    In any sense, I wish you, and your family strength at this hard time. My prayers will be for you tonight. 

    Alisha. ReplyCancel

  • I’m glad you have the support of your Dad and brothers to tackle this job. I wish you all the very best Katrina, and hope that as the clutter is sorted, you can think more about your mum and not the stuff she was hoarding. Hugs.ReplyCancel

  • Fion a

    I am feeling for you and the huge task ahead of you. My inlaws are hoarders and their house had a tree through it during the 2008 storms that hit brisbane. We removed 80 cubic metres of stuff from their house and sadly less than 4 years later it is all starting to build up again. I hope you can give your dad some peace and restore some space in their house for him. All my loveReplyCancel

  • Angela

    Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. I’m sure you will inspire many others with your strength and bravery – thinking of you at this difficult time.ReplyCancel

  • Kath Wong

    Oh Kat, you are so brave. Brave to go through all of the boxes your mum had collected so close after her passing, brave to let us see the process (it is of course so personal to you), and brave to show your face to us while doing it! I wish you luck and strength as you tread this path. Deepest sympathy
    Kath ReplyCancel

  • Carrie

    Dear Kat, as always you never cease to inspire me, even in your times of sadness you continue to share and inspire!!!  Thank you.  I have my very elderly mum living with me and my poor husband has no garage space now with all her ‘special, precious STUFF’ stored there.  I will follow your journey with interest and know you will continue to motivate me as you always do.  good luck with the journey, be strong and treat yourself gently.  hugs and thanksReplyCancel

  • Emma

    Dear Kat

    Your video brought me to tears as I realised the very sad and difficult time you are experiencing right now.  Please try not to beat yourself up about removing your Mum’s things from the home.  It will be such a help to your Dad and I believe your Mum is now in a place where she can appreciate the things you are doing to care for him.  How lucky he is to have you & your brothers around him.

    Thank you so much for your courage in sharing this post with us, it has inspired me not to put off those things I should have been getting organised around my own home, and also to give both my parents extra good hugs this week!

    Take care of yourself (you know you need to in order to take care of others right?) and know that there will be a light at the end of the tunnel very soon.

    Emma xReplyCancel

  • Terry

    This must be so difficult for your family to go through all your Moms things. makes me miss my Mom so much, she’s been gone for 12 years now and she had the emptiest closets I had ever seen. I wish they would’ve been some stuff to go through. my heart goes out to you and your family. How you didn’t shed a tear while making the video is beyond me, I have a huge lump in my throat. Take care and wishing you comfort as you tackle this heartbreaking task.

  • Anon

    Oh sweetheart thank you for sharing your journey.  Hang in there, you’ve given your father an amazing gift.  Remember your mum for all the ways you loved her.  Our parents are fallible, and an important life lesson is to let go of the things that you can’t change – it is hard to let go of the ideal picture of what we want them to be and accept as they are,  Good luck with the next stepsReplyCancel

  • My mother in law is a hoarder. It breaks my heart. She has a styrofoam cup from when her sister ws in the hospital when she was 2. She will not get rid of it because her sister may want it back one day. UGG, She says she wants change. My husband wants to use all his vacation time to help her. ReplyCancel

  • FJW

    Thanks for sharing and thanks for being strong for your mum.  Take courage in knowing you have helped many of us along your own journey and will continue to do so as we journey with you. Cheers!ReplyCancel

  • Tammy James

    Hello beautiful! I don’t visit any blogs as much as I used to but saw this in my facebook feed and wanted to say hi and pass on my condolences to you and your family. I see how difficult this is for you and admire you and your brothers for tackling this with your dad to help him have a free-er environment. Sending you love and strength and thank you for sharing :)ReplyCancel

  • barbara001

    Thankyou for sharing your blog on decluttering your mum’s place. I am so glad i found your site. You have given me alot of inspiration and ideas on how to do things better. My condolences to you & family during this sad time. I lost my father 7 mths ago and still dealing with his passing. As you say we can go through this journey together. Take care xo

  • Organizing services NYC

    This sounds to be an amazing way to keep up the home away  from de-clutter.ReplyCancel

  • sophie.hills

    Thanks so much for sharing Katrina.  I think we get a deeper insight into why you want to help us to get organised.  Take care, and I’m looking forward to sharing the journey with you (and helping myself get better de-cluttered)! Hugs for your loss.ReplyCancel

  • Anita

    First of all, I am so sorry about losing your mum, especially so suddenly. My prayers are with you.

    I have only just recently found your site and I wish I had found it 12 months ago when I had a breakdown over my clutter. I ended up seeing a councillor to sort through what was holding me back from sorting out all my junk. 12 months later, I am still on the journey, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

    I saw the pictures of your mums home and I have to say it scared me. It is almost exactly like my mothers. While she does not store peanut butter jars and the like, she just cant stop buying stuff she doesn’t need. It is only her and dad in the family home now and she doesn’t need eight baking pans, as an example. She has two shipping containers, full of apple boxes with costumes in it from when she was a costume mistress. She has not done any plays in years, but she continually adds to the collection. I just fear that it will get worse and eventually it will just take over. I also know that you can’t force anyone to begin to de-clutter. Some people will never be able to get to that stage. I can empathise with your feelings towards your mum and dads home and I hope it all goes well. ReplyCancel

    • It sounds like you know exactly how I am feeling. Mum too has a shipping container I am yet to look in. I wish you well on your journey and I am so pleased that you found my site too JReplyCancel

  • tomi

    So sorry to hear about your mum. Thinking of you and your family, take care. ReplyCancel

  • Davistrans

    Thank you for sharing your video and story. I’m sure it will be truley inspirational for so many people. Sorry to hear about the loss of you mum, my thoughts are with you.ReplyCancel

  • Kyles93

    Your story touched me today as today is 6 years since my mother unexpectedly passed away.  Unlike you, I have only a few things of hers as my sister has mental health problems and had thrown most things away over the years.  Anyway, thinking of you and your family.  Hold onto each other – it is a very difficulty heartaching time xxxooo ReplyCancel

  • Danelle69

    One thing I heard from someone who helps with de-cluttering in the US, there is a point when the clutter starts to collect, something triggers it.  He suggested that you have a look at the magazine in the bottom of the  stack (if they are collecting them) for an idea on the trigger date.  Was an intersting thought.ReplyCancel

    • Absolutely and I have learnt what the trigger was, sadly we missed all the signs at the time.ReplyCancel

  • Liz

    Well done Kat, you are doing a wonderful job. We have just finished cleaning out my brothers house, he passed a few days after your mum, and although it was sad and difficult we did manage to have a few giggles at things we found and old memories that these items brought back. Our loss has inspired me to de clutter my house and my life and I will be following you for advice, tips and motivation. Much love to you and your family xoReplyCancel

  • Monique

    Hi Katrina, thank you for sharing this difficult journey you and your family are now taking.  I have been following your blog for quite some time now, as I have too much stuff and am not organised enough, so it’s a regular inspiration to see what ideas you have for us.  I remember reading some time ago about your reasons for starting up this blog, to help your friend who had lost her mother.   It hit a nerve with me as we lost our dad 20 years ago, and my mother like yours, began to expand on her ‘collecting’ hobby, from teddy bears to old bottles and all sorts in between.  She said it was an interest, but sadly got to the point that we could no longer stay with her when visiting, as there is just not enough room, because of her stuff, she lives in a 4 bedroom family home on her own.  Hoarding creates stresses in relationships, as the hoarders become very defensive of their stuff, (in my mums case even cardboard boxes and old toothbrushes).  I have not been to her house in years now, even though we have recently moved from the other side of the country to within a short drive.   I know that she is avoiding having my family visit.  She says she is clearing out things, but I know that this is difficult.  I have now chosen to step back, for the sake of my own sanity, (and my husbands).  It is in someway reassuring that there others experiencing the same emotions.  Best wishes to you and your family and keep up the great work on the website. ReplyCancel

  • My mum passed away suddenly on the 27th March 2011, i’m a solo mum and she was my world apart from my children. She was also a hoarder of everything, you described my mum to a tee. Only she didn’t have neat organised boxes, it was everywhere, to the point there was no where to sit when we visited. My brother and i filled a large skip bin in one day when we had to empty out the house she rented. Time is passing and it does get easier but i am glad i found your website as i can see myself heading down her track and i hope that this will give me a new start. Much love and prayers to you, it isn’t easy.ReplyCancel

    • Ooh Katrina (wonderful name), it’s such a hard process and I feel that because of the hoarding it has really drawn the process of loosing mum more than I can bare. I am pleased that my website can possibly help you to keep an uncluttered home xReplyCancel

  • Bec Waterhouse

    Your poor mum. She must have been so embarrassed about her hoarding :( It must have been hard for you to watch her go through that.

    I’m very sorry for your loss.ReplyCancel

  • […] my parents house after the passing of mum.  If you are new to the blog, you can read further about the first step of decluttering mums home.   […]ReplyCancel

  • Jilly

    {{{{hugs&prayers}}}} Katrina, as you and your family cope with this sad event! You are very brave!

    Jilly oxoxoReplyCancel

  • Mira

    I feel for your loss and pray for you and your mom,but I wonder why you have a need to embarrass your mom by airing her ” hoarding” it did not bother her,why is it bothering you and why does the world need to know?…It should be private ,I think she would preferred it that way.You can get support and fulfilment in other ways.
    May God give you and her peace.ReplyCancel

    • Caris

      If it did not ‘bother’ her then it cannot ’embarrass’ her now. Kat is fantastic about being honest and real – and it doesn’t get more honest and real than facing the fact that your parent is a flawed human being like everyone else. I read no criticism in this page – this is part of who her mother was in the end, part of their relationship. And if someone else who is going through the same thing right here and now can see this and know that they are not alone, that it is nothing to be ashamed about and that they can talk about it, then I think it is a wonderful thing.ReplyCancel

    • Mira, I shared this post because of the experience I was left to help my Dad and brothers with. That was to go through all her items, her treasures, her … stuff. She was a hoarder and it made the process of her passing away so much harder. It was a really long and slow process of clearing that took us months. To be honest I didn’t really come to terms with what had happened to her so suddenly passing away until we finished moving my Dad. I will forever miss my mum but that grieving process was so long and drawn out, I was not myself for a good 9 months. My hope from this post was that somebody that is a hoarder to realise how hard it is on the family that is left behind to go through the things and hopefully they can make a change.ReplyCancel

      • Cath

        Hi Katrina,

        I was wondering if you were comfortable, and have the time, if you could possibly write a series of more extensive posts on what you did to clear out your mum’s stuff. Did you sell anything? Give things away to family/friends/school/op shop? Did you get a skip? Were there any disagreements about what to do with things? How did you manage those? Was it more challenging because your Dad wanted to keep things the way they were? How did you manage your grief amongst all of this? Did you keep anything yourself? And how long did you work on it?

        I’m facing a similar task within the next twelve months and the thought of it is almost overwhelming.

        Many thanks.ReplyCancel

  • JH

    Thank you for sharing your story, I felt your pain but can also tell you are a very strong person who will move forwards with this process. To part with the belongings of someone we loved is very tough, but when the volume of items is mammoth it makes the process so much longer and harder to deal with doesn’t it.
    I wish you peace and happy times ahead, with good memories of your Mum in your heart.ReplyCancel

  • Desré Nikolich

    From what you have said about your Mum it seems that she was very organised as a young parent and its seems when she lost her mother something inside of her changed. Do you think your Mum may have had a lot of grief and loss which affected her emotionally? Maybe she slipped into depression and was having troubles coping. Maybe it all became too much for her and she was going through the motions. It seems despite your difference you were close to your Mum. You should never feel a sense of failure and shame about not being able to help your Mum. Maybe she felt like a failure and shameful as she couldn’t pull it all together like you. Maybe your competence showed her of her incompetence to keep her life in order. She needed love just as you need love. We all need love to function. Maybe her mother was a huge part of her source of love. We all live and grow and change with the seasons of our lives.ReplyCancel

  • Desré Nikolich

    By the way Katrina my Mum is a hoarder too. I have been trying to get her for years to start decluttering but she also has difficulties letting go of things as she puts emotional attachment to things. She has had many losses too – her mother had Alzheimer’s and disappeared and was never found. She has lost my Dad and a second husband to cancer. She has lost her sister to cancer. I too have too many things due to renovating and having things stored. Before I had a hard time letting go of things but now appreciate the opportunity to purge – let things go – to free myself up. I guess it is a bit like dieting. One needs to be in the right head space to make changes. I guess how I can most inspire my Mum is to show by example and take time with her and assist her to start decluttering at her own pace.ReplyCancel

  • Susan Lavigne

    First, thank you for sharing your story. even if it seems to have been two years loosing a parent has to be rough. She has a great legacy though. Her family loved her and she must have done a great job raising you if you turned out as amazing as you did never mind the cluttered house ( though it must have been horrendous to have dealt with)
    I have just found you this morning and I think you are just what I need. I am a new Mom and have moved six times in the last 3 years. Life has been good to me though, with a great family and a loving husband to be, I am finally settling after a tumultuous decade that was my 20’s.
    The final barrier is the mess that is the house. I still feel overwhelmed and unbalanced but one step at a time things will get better. One more move though as we are buying a house this year. Trying to make it our last move.

    Thank you againReplyCancel

  • Anonymous

    I can relate with your mum’s habit of not wanting to throw anything away. Over the years I have too become a lot like your mum. I used to have a clean organized home, nothing out of place. Then, when my second child turned 2-3 years of age, that’s when it started for me. I didnt want to throw anything of my kids’ things away. I have slowly become a hoarder. I am embarrassed to have people come over because my home is not so nice to look at anymore. I’ve been wanting to declutter for so long, but I don’t know where to begin. It seems so overwhelming. I’ll get these little bursts where I’ll start small but then I lose the interest and fall back into old habits. I really do need to take charge and get working on it, because my husband does not like my bad cluttering habits. He tries to throw things out and I say no.I’m really torn.ReplyCancel

  • Nicola Shepherd

    Oh Kat, thank you for sharing. Big hugs to you xxReplyCancel

The past few weeks have been a real struggle coping with the grief of losing mum.  I have lost all my grandparents, but this is a completely different feeling.  There are days where I think tomorrow I will try get back into my routine, but I’m finding it hard to move forward.  I want to be […]

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  • Donna Webeck

    So sorry to hear of your loss. Take time with your grief, and I hope it will be easier with time.  

    This is a beautiful list, I am going to take note xxReplyCancel

  • Tammy_crane6

    i lost my dad 2,5yrs ago, at age 20– it hurts that he only spent a short 5mnths with my first daughter & will never get to cuddle my 2nd– watch them grow hear them say ‘pop’ for the first time — & i know people say it gets easier with time, but i think it gets harder- i mean, sure you learn to find a way to deal with it (you have to!) but everyday you miss them more & more :(   — condolences x ReplyCancel

  • Oh I am so sorry that you lost your Mum. I think the fact that you have realised that you just have to be kind to yourself and take life at a pace that you can manage, is a step in the right direction. Great list. It was lovely to meet you at Blogopolis and I will look you out in New York! A-M xxReplyCancel

  • Helene

    Deepest sympathy to you on the loss of your Mum. Such a massive loss that we all dread, my thought are with you and I hope that you start getting some sleep soon, maybe even some lovely dreams of your dear Mum will bring you some comfort. XoReplyCancel

  • Melissa

    My heart goes out to you and your family Katrina – losing a parent is a really hard thing for anyone to go through, I was in High School when I lost my father and even at that time it took me 3 months to get back to school to face people etc. So I think you are already doing a wonderful job!! I believe (this is what gets me through) that your Mum would be watching over you all now and she will be reading every blog that you are writing and she will continue to be very proud of you – think of her as your guardian angel watching over you and your family xxReplyCancel

  • My thoughts are with you Kat. You are truly inspirational and will move forward in your own time. What a great lsit above.ReplyCancel

  • Hi Katrina, So sorry about the loss of your mum.  Losing someone close is never easy and I dont think it is something you ever get over.  A friend of mine posted this link on FB last year and I thought it was really interesting and has been of some help to me.  I hope you can use it and that is can help you to move on and get back into your regular routine.  Regards Marianne  :)

  • Julie

    I am so sad, that you have lost your Mum. I am sure that she is now watching over you as someone above has said, and I am sure that she is vey proud of you. I think that you are doing an amazing job already. Take all the time you need, your readers love you and will understand.ReplyCancel

  • MarissaBeautifullyOrganised

    Oh lovely Kat, I’ve just caught up and read about you losing your mum, I’m so sorry lovely xx

    My thoughts are with you and your family xxReplyCancel

  • Janblanch

    Katrina I am so sorry for the pain you are going through at the moment. losing a loved one is never easy and losing your mother is very hard at whatever age you are. take one day at a time and let yourself grieve in your own way and your own time. things will right themselves when the time is right and until then be kind to yourself. my thoughts and prayers are with you



  • Susan

    Hi kat, one thing I did when I lost my mum was I went looking for a beautiful thank you card and wrote it to her … Telling mum all the things I was grateful to her for and what I loved about her…. All the things I maybe hadn’t gotten around to telling her… But also a lot of things that I had told her but that I wanted to say again… Like I love you!! I found it very helpful doing this – it ended having an extra few pages to it!! Best wishes to you and don’t be too critical of yourself….. It will take time to fully grieve and “deal with your loss”… XoxoReplyCancel

  • Sharon

    Deapest Sympathies. Grief takes time, and I’m sorry it will be a long journey. The lengths gives tribute to the special relationship that you had. The best road through it is the road of thankfulness. Of the beautiful mother you have and treasured her best legacy is her family. May you find comfort in your treasured memories and peace in the midst of turmoil. God bless.ReplyCancel

  • Dianna Bay

    Dear Katrina, I can not begin to comprehend what you are going through. I am so sorry for your loss. I know that your mum did not get to read your blog but I am sure that she is at your side, with her hand on your shoulder guiding you through this time in your life. I am sure that she is very proud of you and your accomplishments.
    You are a very insperational women. I have found comfort in recent days, by reading your posts and looking at your ideas. One of which I have taken on board this week to help me get through a very challanging time. I am a person who likes to be organised, and in control of as much of what is going on around me as possible. I am currently going through a house extension at the moment. I have 2 young boys and we are staying in the house whilst the extension is being built.
    I did not realise how much of a control freak I was until I started this process.
    Last week it all got too much and I broke down about the whole situation, I couldn’t handle not being in control of my surroundings or what was going on.
    I turned to your website and FB page for ideas on how to make things better for me and my family. I spent last weekend sorting my bathroom cupboards and also set up a 2 week meal planner based on your ideas.
    From this I have been able to gain control again and feel less anxious about what is happening. Your page has helped me plan how things will be once the extension is finished and it has set my mind at ease.
    Thank you for your wisdom and your words. I hope that knowing you have helped someone as much as you have, helps you get through this time.
    Wishing you all the best.

  • Nbeltane

    First of all condolences on your loss. 

    I lost my dad in may of 2011 he had a sudden heart attack, it was several months for me to come to terms that he was gone. Then in February of this year, we lost Mum to Cancer. To have lost two parents in less than a year is more than hard to cope with, for the first few months after losing mum i still expected her to call. I am learning to take each day as something that should be treasured. i lost interest in everything the home, crafting blogging, I miss them both immensely. Now its time for me to concentrate on my little family and do what is right for us. For many years we have stayed in the same state as my parents but now they are gone we have made the decision to move interstate and start a new chapter and journey just for us. To do some of the things that that list suggests. It just takes time. And as many people have told me in the months since losing mum and dad, grief doesn’t just go away, it stays with you, with each day though you get a little stronger. ReplyCancel

  • lj6

    “The darkest moments of our lives are not to be buried and forgotten, rather they are a memory to be called upon for inspiration to remind us of the unrelenting human spirit and our capacity to overcome the intolerable”  Vince Lombardi
    You will get through this because you are a strong, inspirational and lovely lady.  ReplyCancel

  • AshMmisforMe

    I’m so sorry to hear about your mum Kat. That’s such a beautiful list that you found. I’m sure your mum can see your blog, and how amazing you are. So so lovely to meet you on Saturday, xoReplyCancel

  • Kathryn

    What a gorgeous list. We all need reminding some times to do these things, what ever is going on in our lives. Take your time and don’t be hard on yourself. Thinking of you at this sad time, even though I’ve never met you. Take care xxReplyCancel

  • Betty

    Katrina, so very sorry you lost your mum, I think you share your beautiful self through your blog so indirectly I think your mum did read it. In any case, she had the Organised Housewife as her daughter, what could be more special than that, I’m sure she’s very, very proud. xReplyCancel

  • Vanja

    Lovely to read, as I lost my dad 4 weeks ago… It feels like life is never going to be the same again :-( ReplyCancel

  • Shell

    I lost my Dad 10 years ago suddenly to a heart attack. It was the anniversary on the weekend and honestly I cried more than I have on any other anniversary. Losing a parent rocks you to your very core. It takes time to heal and time to nurture yourself. Always worth making the time for yourself and speaking with a professional for some counselling as well.

    Really love your blog, but don’t forget to take time out for you as well.ReplyCancel

  • Rose

    I lost my Dad two weeks ago – thanks for this post he was diagnosed with cancer 6 months ago, it has been a horrendous 6 months and I am struggling – I am someone who always copes, life can keep piling it on and I take it in my stride, now even the little things seem so hard and insurmontable, at the moment I feel like all the joy has been sucked out and I’m wading through a thick fog – the insomnia is the killer I think but I suspect even with sleep it would be hard, it is almost unbelievable that life wants to keep charging along when I feel like it should’ve hit pause while I take in the enormity of my loss.ReplyCancel

  • Jaime

    Sending you a healing hug.ReplyCancel

Tips to help prepare, organise and plan a garage sale to sell items from your home.

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  • Great tips there Alyce. I’ve never had one even when we moved simply because we couldn’t be bothered to get ourselves organised, especially since we had to also fix up our house before selling it. Instead we gave the stuff away and those that we wanted to replace, we sold on Ebay . ReplyCancel

  • Price everything, especially what you’ve advertised & want to sell; even if it’s a general sign that says “cheap-just ask!” (use quiet times to price what you ran out of time to do).
    Rope off entry until advertised start time. It builds impatience & excitement in buyers & they will tend to make purchases as soon as they see something they like instead of thinking about it & just so somebody else doesn’t buy it!
    You can’t sell space! Don’t spread out too much. Keep items close & grouped together; stand books so you can read spines, hang clothes in garment styles, label linen in sets, etc etcReplyCancel

  • […] Okay, enough vacation talk. Let’s turn our attention back to the home front. Summer’s a great time for garage sales, and there’s no better way to declutter your home while making a few extra bucks to spend on that vacation. (Sorry, couldn’t help myself!) Get the most out of your sale with these tips on product selection, pricing and advertising. My favorite tips: Use “bulk pricing” for entire categories of items, and don’t include your street number when advertising the sale. (The Organised Housewife) […]ReplyCancel

  • […] 5 easy tips for a successful garage sale […]ReplyCancel

  • Terri

    Have plenty of plastic bags and small change.ReplyCancel

    • Katrina

      Ooh yes! I must have. Thanks Terri.:)ReplyCancel

This is a guest post by Laura from Smarter Admins A few months ago, I moved house. I moved from a spacious place that was (very) run down to a house that is (a lot) smaller but in beautiful condition. It’s lovely to be living in such nice surroundings, but I’m struggling to keep my […]

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  • […] It’s a well known fact that I am the ‘messy one’ in our relationship. It’s evident from the invisible line drawn in the middle of our bedroom, which half is mine. Same with our shared desk. I stumbled across this site which made me drop my jaw because – awesome – I can organise my whole life!! Here’s how to organise your desk to start. […]ReplyCancel

  • Sandy

    Thank you for posting this!
    I was looking at my desk on the weekend and was mortified at it! Esp since I work from home, its awful having ‘stuff’ everywhere.
    I really look forward to getting it cleared up this week using your tips :-)

  • Everyone feel like to work at neat and clean work place. Having good management is very necessary for this. How you are using each thing at your work place, are you keeping the things back properly after use. All these things are very necessary to keep your desk clutter free.ReplyCancel

  • Elisa

    mine is even tons messier. Actually my entire room is :-( And I have been dreading and procastinating about tidying it up…ReplyCancel

  • Carola

    My son is looking for a clear glass desk like yours… do you mind me asking where you got it?ReplyCancel

    • Fiona

      I bought mine from Officeworks, was around $100.ReplyCancel

  • […] Declutter your office desk, through the holidays it can easily get out of control […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Before and after of decluttering and organising an office desk […]ReplyCancel