Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Spring Cleaning, Anyone?

Spring is just around the corner.
Do you have plans to do some cleaning? 
Some purging of the old; simplifying your home and life?

I love this quote by Henry David Thoreau:

"Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify.

Many of you are pros when it comes to organizing a home, but for those who immediately feel overwhelmed at the thought; here are a few SIMPLE tips to help you in your endeavors:

1. Begin with one room, one drawer, one corner.

  It can be a big project- but, like 'eating an elephant', if you do it one bite at a time, it will be easier and you will make progress.  

2. Try to see your belongings through another person's eyes.  

So often we are used to using, looking at and handling our personal belongings...and don't realize just how bad of shape they're in.   -Like my pink hair dryer that barely puffs out heated air, but I've kept as a back up or my chipped bowls that aren't fit for company- 
Decide if it's worth keeping (Is it useful, do you love it?)  and if  you can afford another to replace it.  

3. Ask yourself: Do I use this, love this, need this?   

I'm all for being frugal and sticking to the old adages: 'Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without' and 'Waste not, want not.'   But it doesn't serve me well to have three or six of the same kitchen appliance or utensil if I never use them.  
Because we have our home on the market, I've been combing over the house asking myself; "Do I really want to drag this across 4 states?"
Even if you are not in the envious position of preparing to move like I am (wink, wink)  you could pretend!   They say to think of those items you would grab in case of a fire.  Your most cherished possessions (aside from your family and purse, of course).  Begin there and carefully choose what is important to you.

4. Have a place for everything and everything in its place.
Be sure your belongings have a home and if that 'home' begins to overflow or become too crowded, its time to reorganize or get rid of some things.  
If you choose to use storage containers, clear is best- in order to see what's inside!- but be sure to label the contents....and apply number 3 above to your choice of contents.  

That's it for the basics.

Everyone has their own style of organization- you don't have to have an utterly stream-lined home.  You can choose if you want comfy and slightly cluttered or clean and bare enough for voices to echo.  Do what feels right for you and your family- but be sensitive to whether clutter is weighing you down.  
Life is complicated enough without being a slave to Things.

Henry David Thoreau said:
"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler"
"A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone."

"However mean your life is, meet it and live it: do not shun it and call it hard names. Cultivate poverty like a garden herb, like sage. Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends. Things do not change, we change. Sell your clothes and keep your thoughts."

One more tip for those who want it:
To keep your sheets organized, neatly fold the sheet set and place sheets and pillow case inside of the other pillow case.   You'll never have to search for pillow cases again. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jessa,

    I loved your list. I am also into spring time cleaning/organization - here are a few cleaning lists that I came up with:


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