Hey y’all! I am so excited that the groundhog didn’t see his shadow! I am so over winter! I long for the warmer and longer days! What I am most excited about is spring cleaning! I want to share 3 of my best tips for organizing and decluttering your home throughout the year!
Spring is the most common time for people to “deep clean” their homes and declutter. However, you can get a jump start on it so you can enjoy more of the beautiful days to come! Check out these three simple, stress free ways to help keep your house decluttered all year long!
1. Keep What You Use and Organize It!
This is my number one rule! When you start going through you belongings, it is very easy to think “Oh, I forgot I had that, I will use it” or “when I lose 10 more pounds I will be able to fit into those pants” or “I could use that”! All these thoughts we say to ourselves are our inner hoarders not wanting to let go! There is either some emotional attachment or financial attachment to most of our belongings.
However, I feel confident that if you have not used an item or better yet, forgot about an item in a years times, then you have no need to hold on to it. These items truly hold no need in our lives except the attachments we tell ourselves. Clothes are often times the hardest for people to let go over. Thinking that one do you might fit back into a pair of pants? Toss them, when you get back to the size you dream of reward yourself with a new pair!
I went through our kitchen about 5 months ago and discovered that I had held on to so many hand-me-downs that I didn’t have room for anything I truly wanted. I had a hard time finding anything and had to pull more stuff out of drawers and cabinets to find stuff than necessary. I donated 4 boxes of kitchen items that I had “forgot” I had or that I never used! My kitchen felt less cluttered, and more functional!
2. Go Through Your Kids Toys and Declutter Their Space
This is probably the hardest task to tackle right now. Going through the kids toys…. it just sounds awful right? When I do this, I try to do it when the kids are not home (school or at their grandparents), as this makes it easier to separate. As kids collect toys, more and more break and get buried in the toy box. At least 3 times a year, I recommend going through your kids toys. Here are some things to consider when going through this process!
Are The Toys Age Appropriate
Toys are expensive and they are hard for many to part with. They get most of them for gifts or because we as parents think they will help them grow in smarter little people! Let me ask you though, are your kids playing with toys that are not longer mentally stimulating them? Are they learning from these toys?
Making sure that we are keeping toys that are age appropriate and suitable to our children is important. You know your children and you know what toys they play with because you are probably picking them EVERYDAY for them! I am guilty of it too! Start paying closer attention to how these toys are helping them grow and develop.
Donate Not Store
I am not sure about you, but I don’t have room to store extra toys or to rotate them every few months. In theory, this sounds really great to me. In reality, I can barely remember to keep their clothes up with they way they grow, much less remember to rotate toys!
Instead, I go through my kids toys a minimum of 3 times a year. I love to donate as many toys as possible. I make the kids do this part with me because I think having a giving heart is important. Also, I think it is more important that our children learn how blessed they are and to remain humble.
Once you have determined which items your child wants to keep and which are not broken, you can pick where you want to donate them. We have given toys to our daycare, books to Rileys Children’s hospital, and clothes to families with kids younger than us. It doesn’t matter who or where you donate them to, just get them out of your house! If a yard sale it your thing, go for it. I tried it and it was not worth the $40 I made! So I donate!
3. Is There a Spot For It
When I was a kid, my sister and I used to share a room. We were so messy back then that I really don’t know how my mom did it! However, we often got “grounded” to our rooms until they were clean. Our room was so overwhelming that we didn’t know where to start. We pushed everything into a pile and started putting things away from the pile. What was left we would throw away.
I find myself still doing this as an adult and I think that it can be a good practice for some situation. While as an adult, I am not near as messy, I still find that my house accumulates more things than I know what to do with. Here are some of the areas I tackle this way still!
When going through clothes, sometimes it can be daunting standing there at your closet. It can be helpful to pull it all out and then hang it back up one item at a time. If you want it, hang it up. If not, set it aside to donate or sell. This also helps you to organize it while putting it away.
Organization tip: I love separating my clothes by colors! This helps me when looking for a specific item, I know generally where to look and I can quickly coordinate my outfits.
Counters and Desks
Coming home from our busy lives, we often set stuff on the counter or a nearby desk and forget about it…. until someone is coming over! I have and sometimes still do, just grab it all and take it into my office. Out of side, out of mind, right. No! This is not productive and ends up making double the work! Even though I still do this, I get frustrated at myself.
Organizational tip: Go through mail immediately when you bring it in. Throw away what you don’t need. Get a file organizer to file bills away neatly until paid, then file or discard. Better yet, go paperless and save some trees! 🙂
Usually in situations like these, you can find a place to put it away or a way to use an item. In the rare occasion, don’t keep in shoved is another room “hoping” to find a place for it or trying to figure out where you could use it. Simply, toss it, donate it, or sell it!
Cabinets and Closets
I love organizing my cabinets. Sometimes, going through them is like a great release of JUNK! That is right! How many of you hoard stuff under your bathroom sinks or on bathroom closets? When is the last time you went through your spice cabinet? Pick a day when you can spare 10 minutes to go through one cabinet in your house and see how great it feels to get rid of some junk!
Organization tip: Use elevation. By this I mean find a tiered rack that you can elevate your items on. This helps you to be able to see what you have so your not over purchasing. You can also store shorter, less used items under it. In my spice cabinet I store baking spices like nutmeg and allspice under it. It helps keep the clutter down and I am able to find what I need easily.
I use wire racks but would recommend using solid ones and it helps with stability! Lessons learned, but I am too cheap to buy new right now!
Keeping closets organized can be a challenge as well. I recommend only have free items that you use daily, like towels. Keep other items in baskets that are easy to pull out when you need to contents. Keep spare sheets in a basket in my bathroom closet. This is a good plan for your cleaning items as well since you may find you don’t need to hold on to old products.
Keeping a Tidy Home
These are some of my tips for keeping your house organized and so that Spring Cleaning won’t bog you down for an entire weekend! These tips with help you to enjoy your home, kids, and belongings much more!
Tell me your tips and tricks for keeping up with your house! How often do you go through your belongings or your kids? Do you involve the kids when going through their items? Do you donate or sell? I can’t wait to hear from you and learn some of your hacks!
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