Ironically, I found a copy of “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” at a thrift shop and have been reading it while sunning on the beach, with my bag of beach goods in which everything I’ve packed sparks joy: the M&Ms, the towel, the goggles I just bought at CVS, the sunblock.

Susan Dromey Heeter's Budget Vogue column sig

And, while I have resisted Marie Kondo for years, it’s been far less painful to read her than I thought. So, here at my sandy Budget Vogue desk, I’ll give you my take on the “Japanese art of decluttering and organizing.”

Susan Dromey Heeter writes and teaches on the Seacoast. Contact her at