Coast Through Spring Cleaning
It’s April and spring is in the air. I love this season because it’s always a time of refreshment and renewal...and, of course, spring cleaning!
Is your house already re-cluttered from your Marie Kondo inspired purge at the beginning of the new year? Here are a few tips and ideas to get your space back on track through the power of spring cleaning. I’ve listed areas and items that are usually overlooked, cast aside, and bring about those thoughts of “I’ll get to that later after this episode of The Office that I’ve seen 18 times.” Well today, my friends, is later. I've compiled a list of mostly forgotten areas to tackle around the house to spring clean like a boss.
Socks are the biggest form of stress for most of my clients. Take this spring cleaning time to TOSS any socks without a match. If socks are an issue in your house, I would advise you to pare it down to 14 pairs per person. Two weeks worth of socks is more than enough and it will reduce the stress of looking for the inevitable lone sock. This purging includes going through underwear and bras as well. Anything tattered or worn? Throw them away.
Are you even an adult if you don’t have a huge box of cords? If you don’t know what it’s for, toss it. If you’ve never used it, toss it. Have that old laptop from college that weighs 20 pounds? Recycle it. Capital Area Corporate Recycling Council (CACRC) will take most electronics including phones, laptops, and desktops. They will wipe them clean and recycle them all for a good cause.
3. Junk Drawer(s)
Please tell me you only have one?!? If you have more than one “junk drawer” we have an issue. First, clear them out, sort like items, throw away or recycle items that are not being used or broken. Designate each drawer for something specific. Categories could include: electronics, art supplies, tools, beanie babies, whatever. I don’t know what you’re into just make some categories! There are these little handy drawer inserts that can help keep your items in place that you can find online or at any dollar store, or you can use unused jewelry boxes or electronics boxes to keep items in place!
4. Beauty Products and Toiletries/Medicine
I used to be a teacher so I understand how the toiletries can get out of hand. I literally used to get ten bottles of lotion for every holiday. Empty your bathroom drawers and cabinets. Set aside products you don’t use any more and consider donating them to St. Vincent De Paul, Iris Domestic Violence Center or even the YMCA. You won’t feel as bad about tossing these items if you donate them to a good cause. Expired medicines should be taken to your local pharmacy or hospital to be disposed of properly. After you purge, put your items in like categories and store them together. Categories could be as simple as face products, hair products, body products, look for trends when you’re sorting. Yea, it would be nice to have everything in pretty little baskets and bins, but if you’re short on cash, use what you have. I’m talking shoe boxes or Amazon boxes (Prime addiction is real people).
5. Refrigerator and Pantry
This one is easy. Take everything out of the fridge and pantry, play Lil Boosie’s “Wipe Me Down,” literally wipe everything down, check expiration dates, and toss.
6. Purses and/or Travel Bags
Ladies, I know your purse is filled with old receipts, waded up gum wrappers, and that one earring you’ve been looking for. Clear out all of your old purses, backpacks, and travel bags. Toss the trash and put the other lingering items back where they belong.
7. Your Car
For this one, I would bring out two bags or boxes. One for trash and one for items that need to be returned into the house. Show your wip some love after by taking her through a car wash and vacuuming up all those leftover french fries and Cheeto crumbs.
8. Laundry Room
I feel as though this room always gets the snub. We feel as though just because we CLEAN clothes in here that its automatically CLEAN. It’s the whole “do you wash a towel, or does the towel wash you” debacle. But your laundry room, she needs some love. Clean out those drawers or cabinets and toss any empty or unused products. Play that Lil Boosie again and wipe down those washers and dryers. Take it a step further and run your washer empty with some vinegar and baking soda to clean it from the inside out. Don’t forget to vacuum that lint trap on your dryer!
Stacks on stacks on stacks of papers everywhere? Keep it simple and then save the major overhauling of those papers another day. Gather all the papers in your home in one spot. Create two piles: needs immediate attention and needs to be filed. If it doesn’t fit either of those categories, shred it and recycle it.
10. Kid’s Toys
Get those kiddos involved on this one. Get a box or a bag and have your kids fill it with toys they no longer play with anymore. Explain to them that you will give them to another child who doesn’t have any toys and how kind they are for helping a friend! If this doesn’t work, wait until they are sleeping and get rid of anything that takes a battery or makes noise. Just kidding (not really). Consider donating to Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital. They accept donations of gently used toys, books, and games for their patients.
This one is mostly for the ladies, but hey fellas if you need to clean out that pinky ring collection, this one's for you too! Gather all of your jewelry into one spot and place them into categories such as necklaces, earrings, rings, and bracelets. Toss any earrings that have a missing partner, untangle or throw away that gob of tangled necklaces, toss or put aside any jewelry that needs to be fixed or cleaned. Set up a time and location of when this is actually going to get done and set it on your calendar!
12. Pet Supplies
I was going to put pet supplies and kid’s toys together, but I know there is ongoing animosity between dog parents and human parents. Go through all of Sparky’s toys and toss the ones they don’t like or play with. Your pet will probably get super interested in everything they’ve been ignoring for years while your doing this but be strong! Toss out any old medicines or treats that aren’t being used and make sure there is a designated space in your house for all of your fur baby’s items.
Are you feeling motivated and inspired? Keep it going! You can clean and organize ANYTHING with the following steps:Take everything out of the spaceLook at each item, toss, donate, or recycle the things you don’t need or wantSort like items togetherDesignate a spot for like items (contain them if possible)Put items back to said spot when you are done with themIt’s that simple! Take it one step at a time, clean as you go, and trick, I mean ask, a friend to join you and keep you motivated. Spring cleaning isn't all that bad, especially if there's some cool jams and chilled champagne to go with it!