Spring is here, and summer is right around the corner! No one wants to stay at home and organize during the summer, so now is the time to do some spring cleaning and organizing and you will be ready for a fun and relaxing summer in no time! This spring we challenge you to a 30 day organizing and cleaning challenge. Just think, in 30 days, you should have an organized and clean home (if you skip a few days or need longer, you can go into May and still have plenty of time before June to get it done)! When doing your spring cleaning and organizing start by trying to spend one hour a day on your organizing and cleaning projects. Set a timer, stay on task, and try not to get distracted. Decide if you are going to donate or sell unwanted and unneeded items. Make 3 piles each day you tackle a new project: ….donate, keep, and trash. There are so many awesome places in Charleston that will take your items. Goodwill, Habitat for Humanity, East Cooper Community Outreach, The National Kidney Foundation, and some of these places will even pick up your items at your house. Be ruthless when it comes to decluttering. If you don’t use it or love it, it is clutter. With less clutter, you will have less to clean and keep up with. You will have an easier time finding what you use which means……less stress!
Everyone always asks me if my home is immaculate and organized. Yes, it is organized and usually pretty darn clean, but I also do this spring clean up once or twice a year. Upkeep is key to an organized household! It doesn’t have to be perfect, but you still have to keep up with what you have organized. For example, I let my closet get a little crazy lately, so I had to spend a good two hours in there last weekend purging and straightening things up a bit.
To participate in the challenge, tackle the projects we have listed, and try to get one project done a day. Some projects may take more than a day (like a playroom). That is why we have only listed 18 projects in the challenge…you have 12 extra days to spend on areas where you need extra time. If we haven’t listed a room or an area you need to organize, just add that onto the list. You don’t need to organize in this order either. Just start where you want and check off each as you completed it. Just think….April and May organizing/cleaning/hard core purging then fun in the sun June, July & August! Hmm….this also sounds like my exercise schedule.
1. Children’s Rooms (this is a biggie–probably 2 hours for each room). Go through those toys and purge (I find it is best to clean and organize when the child is not at home). Put up those winter clothes and either consign or donate the clothes you know your child will not be wearing next season.
2. Bathrooms (approximately an hour). Toss those old medications, wipe out drawers and cabinets, toss those hair products and other bath items you aren’t using anymore.
3. Clean out pantry. Wipe down all of those shelves and maybe even buy some cute baskets for breakfast items or snacks for kids.
4. Clean out fridge and freezer. Toss the mystery meat!
5. Wipe down and organize all kitchen cabinets
6. Clean out a closet (or two)…closets are biggies. Assign approximately an hour for linen or other types of closets. Clothes closets are another biggie…probably at least two hours. Remember, if you don’t like it or love it, get rid of it! I was just reading an article in Oprah’s magazine where she even says you only need 33 items in your closet….say WHAT?!!??
7. Clean out your dishwasher. I love this blog and post called One Good Thing… she has some great ideas, and I love how she tells us how to clean out your dishwasher. http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/02/how-to-clean-your-dishwasher.html
8. Clean out your washing machine. I have had a front loader for about 10 years. I just found out a few years ago to always leave the door cracked. That is why I have a ring of mildew around my washer and this method helped me to tackle that problem.http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/08/clean-washing-machine-vinegar_n_3232149.html
9. Clean out your microwave. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/25/how-to-clean-a-microwave_n_1701949.html
10. Freshen that mattress.…We recently had a case of the grossest thing I could ever possibly imagine with one of our children….pinworms. Don’t judge people…you can get them anywhere! Needless to say, I went on a psycho cleaning frenzy for a while there, but this is one of my favorite things I did in that frenzy. Makes your bedroom smell heavenly! http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/07/how-to-clean-and-freshen-your-mattress.html
11. Spend a day and wipe down all doors and baseboards…..that makes such a difference!!!
12. Tackle that paper pile…just do it. File what you need to file, pay the bills, etc….Taming the paper tiger is a biggie! You need to find a system that works for you and stick with it!
13. Clean under the kitchen sink…I love to use any old plastic bin to keep my cleaning products organized under the sink
14. Entertainment Area… If you still use CD’s and DVD’s make sure the discs are with their proper cases. Don’t hoard DVD’s you know you will never look at like how to use a Vitamix. You can always find that online!
15. Desk Clean up…Get rid of all clutter on your desk and make it your happy place where you can actually sit and enjoy working on the computer, paying bills, etc…
16. Junk drawer clean out…Just clean it out and try to make it somewhat organized with small baskets from Wal-Mart or wherever.
17. Sock & Underware Drawer….Need I say more? Throw out the ones with holes and other stuff!
18. Car…Clean it out, get a car wash, and make a little basket with kid essentials to keep in your car like bug spray, wet wipes, etc…