Keep surfaces clean (31 days to Love the Home You Have)

31 days to Love the Home You Have

This post is part of a 31 day series – 31 days to Love the Home You Have.  I am blogging through the 31 day challenge in the back of the book “Love the Home You Have” by Melissa Michaels of The Inspired Room.  You can read all the posts in the series so far here.  And to make sure you don’t miss a post you can sign up to have every post delivered to your inbox , or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram to get even more home decorating ideas and inspiration to help you fall in love with your home.

Today we are going to be focusing on “Less is More”  which sort of continues with our theme of decluttering from yesterday.    I hope you found a spot in your home that was a cluttered or a clutter magnet and got rid of that clutter yesterday!

Melissa tells a story in chapter 3 of after she had her second daughter when she chose to workout one morning in her pj’s instead of clean house  and of course the doorbell rang.  She found herself hiding under the table hoping and praying that neighbor would go away.  And then afterwards re-evaluating what was going on in her home and life that resulted in her hiding from someone at the door instead of welcoming them in.    

Have you been there?  I totally have!  When there is a knock at the door and you think, oh my goodness there are dirty dishes in the sink, the floors haven’t been vacuumed, clutter everywhere and I look like a HOT mess – there is NO WAY I am opening that door.  Or maybe it’s a phone call or a text from someone who is in the area who maybe needs a place to stay for the night.  I LOVE to be hospitable and host guests in my home for a meal or overnight, but I will admit that it usually takes a lot of some serious house cleaning before I can do it.  I am really working on changing that, slowly and surely, and have really made some changes in my home and routines that is greatly helping with that.

But some of what we feel is unneeded and unrealistic expectations that we place on ourselves.  If a neighbor knocks at the door with no notice I am sure she is not expecting there to not even be a coffee cup in the sink and for you to be perfectly dressed/makeup on like you were out.  This quote from Melissa sums it up well and really spoke to me – “We can be hard on ourselves for expecting our homes to be closer to perfect and then hard on ourselves again for not being content when they aren’t.  When we try to find peace in unrealistic expectation of what our homes should be like, we perpetuate an endless cycle of guilt.”  –  Love the Home You Have, p. 49.


Keeping the horizontal surfaces clean in your home helps tremendously in helping you feel better about the whole house.  Let’s be honest we don’t struggle with the walls – we struggle with the tabletops/counters and the floor!    I chose to tackle my bedroom and bathroom today – the clutter and horizontal surfaces had gotten a bit out of control.  Both dressers had a lot of stuff that didn’t belong on them – all of that got thrown out/put where it belonged – then the dressers were dusted and décor rearranged. 


You can see the before/after of the long dresser here and the tall chest dresser here.  This whole set was $40 at a yard sale (including a nightstand) and I refinished them for our room.


I cleaned my bathroom, threw the rugs in the wash, mopped the floor, and then cleaned off the counters.  I even lit a candle once I was done to just enjoy a fall scent in my clean room! Smile 


Sorry for the lights on photos – but it has been raining here for like 10 days Sad smile.

So here’s your challenge for today: Clear off the horizontal surfaces in your home and then strive to keep them clean.  If tackling the horizontal surfaces in the whole house is too large of a job right now then just tackle one room or one area.  Keep the idea of “less is more” in mind too – maybe you just need to get rid of some of the “good stuff” on that table/counter/dresser to reduce the clutter that your eyes see.  Empty and clean space is appealing to the eye.  (We will be tackling the kitchen tomorrow so don’t worry about that room today.)

If you cleaned up some clutter from yesterday and cleared off some surfaces today, I would love to know how that made you feel.  Is creating a cleaner/less cluttered home helping you love your home more?


  1. Food for thought! It helps to look at your house with “new” eyes.. I sometimes think, if someone dropped in for a visit… It’s amazing what you see with that in mind!

  2. Heather B says:

    I actually (finally) cleaned off our kitchen table! Now that we are “empty nesters” and only use 2 spots – I have gotten into the habit of piling paper (bills, school work – I’m a teacher) at the other spots. It took almost 2 hours (as I was budgeting and paying bills) – but it feels so good! Over the next week I’ll tackle some more horizontal surfaces that tend to get over looked.
    Thanks for the motivation 🙂

  3. I cleaned my office/sewing room and now I never want to leave it. I had a habit of letting papers/mail/my direct sales catalogs clutter my desk so I never wanted to go in there. Clearing the surfaces helped tremendously and now I’ll finally get around to making new things.

  4. Sometime we really are very hard on ourselves and feel really bad that it is almost impossible to keep our home perfect. I am cleaning every day when I come from work and with two kids and a dog there always is something to do… I even don’t know how some women are able to keep their homes perfectly clean and organized! Thumbs up for the post!

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