It never ends....
I think some of the best advice about organizing--or more specifically, de-cluttering-- is how it is never "finished". That helps keep the focus on developing ongoing systems of dealing with stuff rather than on just a one-time change, and not feeling bad if at times you look around and DO need to make some major changes. Life changes can kind of sneak up on you, or happen when you really don't have time to do anything other than deal with that issue, so you have to catch up a bit later.
Now, the systems can have improved and evolved to include all kinds of elements such being so organized as to only need a smaller yearly "purge", not bringing more stuff in, daily or weekly spruce-ups--any and all such things. But realizing that you don't just have a personality transplant that makes it all go away forever.
We just took my youngest (of 2 ) daughter off to college. Our home looks kind of like a tornado hit it. Not so much the large mass, but just stuff everywhere that is not "of the room" it is in and also stuff that turns out to be just trash-- as things were opened and packed; bits of school supplies; broken pencils.
Partly I never developed in this child a really good put-away strategy. But in addition, many of you know the "stuff-ness" that occurs in the summer between high-school graduation and moving into a dorm. One thing is that my daughter herself is still in transition and doesn't know just what she wants to save, or not--especially this summer, when she was no longer in high school, but not yet a "college student. " I guess none of us felt like spending the last few weeks of this phase of life arguing about picking up.
So anyway, we are entering a new phase, again, just as we had done at various other life events. There are things that can be tossed, things that must be put away, and the dreaded I'm-afraid-to-toss-it-yet category--some things she might yet need and I don't want to be the one to have pitched them, and some I myself am not sure whether we still need.
Still, what is great about life-phase organizing crossroads, is that all of a sudden there ARE a lot of things that you can just look at and say, we don't need this anymore. There may have been a thingey or whatsit sitting on the counter for a YEAR that I could not for the life of me move or get moved, and now, poof! It no longer belongs.
The good thing about that concept is that for some of the in-between transition stuff, I can see that eventually my daughter will also find it easy (or easier) to decide--after she gets more fully into HER new phase, too; so that I don't need to try to make her focus on that now. I can box up some stuff and let her deal with it later. No one wants to be forced to say, stay or toss, when you're not in that mood and when you are still figuring out who you are.
Now some of this is kind of bittersweet--no more this or that, no more school-aged children, remember this dress, and all of that. But I'm also trying to have a very positive focus on this new phase in our home.
Part is new husband/wife adventures--we both want to exercise more and take back the refrigerator(between holidays) for very healthy eating; plan some cool trips; enjoy the fact that maybe a home surface will stay clear for a whole week, or more, so that we can relax and have a glass of wine and enjoy!
But part also is to make it easier to do the different parent things we will need to do--organize and pack for trips to and from college (it's about a 10-hr drive); make it easier to have family gatherings and handle a sudden influx of "home from college" stuff; help organize increasing amounts of young-adult business (banking, etc;) and be caught up enough to just chill out when one or both of our kids come home and not fret about the house.