Why we only think of organizing and cleaning out once per year is kind of crazy to me. For us, it’s more of a constant thing, but there is something about opening up your home and cleaning out your closets this time of year, right? I’m starting to shift my approach, however. This year I don’t want to clean and reorganize just for the season, I want to do a more sustainable spring cleaning (i.e. something that I can sustain for seasons and years to come).
Since we moved last summer and I kind of drastically cut back on things (namely in my closet and kitchen), I have loved the simplicity of the spaces in our home. Things have a place and I don’t feel as though I’m constantly moving things to get something else!
Instead of focusing just on things that need organizing this season, I’m trying to identify items we don’t need anymore. What can we donate or repurpose?
My focus, as I switch my cold weather wardrobe to warm weather pieces, is to find even more items with which to part. One of my biggest struggles is liking a piece and feeling as though I haven’t worn it enough. Instead I’m trying to be honest with myself about how much I actually wear something. And if someone else could wear it more than I do, then I can pass it on!
Sustainable Spring Cleaning
We often think of spring cleaning as something to get us through the spring and summer. Instead, try shifting your mentality to spring cleaning for the long-haul (i.e. years, not just a season or two)
If you feel overwhelmed by all the places/rooms to organize or pare down, I’d suggest just starting with one room or category this season. Maybe it’s your closet. Or your kitchen. Your garage? Makeup and beauty items? Or, GASP, your purse! No matter what it is, just do that one well!
Here is a room-by-room rundown of some ideas for organizing, paring down, and getting spring clean!
Cleaning Out Your Purse
Why is our purse the catchall and then the bottomless pit? I firmly believe that however big your purse is, you will fill it. So instead of getting a bigger wallet, a bigger, tote, etc – think about paring down on what you always have on hand.
So, first things first – make sure your wallet and bag aren’t too big. Besides the insanity of filling it, it’s also probably not good for your back or neck!
Next, follow these steps for cleaning out your purse. For your wallet – go through it all. Many membership cards and stores have apps that eliminate the need for cards. You can also try to combine gift cards at stores. And then any gift cards you’re more likely to spend from the comfort of your home – keep them at home!
And then it’s time to organize how you store purses in the closet!
Kitchen Spring Cleaning
You know those mini appliances you thought you’d love but never use? Yeah, let’s let one of those go, more if you’re up for it. When we moved last year, I said goodbye to things like an ice cream maker, a pressure cooker, a yogurt machine, and lord know what else that I’d never or almost never used. Reclaim some kitchen space and say goodbye.
You should also clean out your spice cabinet. Get rid of spices that you’ve had for years. My mom will disagree with this, but honestly, those spices don’t really have flavor anymore… A general guideline via Still Tasty:
Whole Spices = 4 Years
Ground Spices = 2-3 Years
Dried Herbs = 1-3 Years
Tackle that fridge. Just get rid of containers of things you don’t use. And don;t forget that you should dispose of the food separately from the container. Make sure you rinse and dry recyclable containers before putting them in the bin!
And when it comes to the actually cleaning, behold the cleaning magic of baking soda and vinegar (add some essential oils too). It sounds cliche, but it really does wonders!
Closet Spring Cleaning
This can be a tricky one – that honestly deserves its own post. I’d highly encourage you to make a list of each type of item first and then pick a number of how many of each you think you’ll need.
When you start pulling out EVERYTHING, you’ll realize just how many things you have. If you haven’t worn it more than once (or at all) in the last wearable season, give it away so someone else can love it properly!
And because this can be super overwhelming, try downloading this ultimate closet detox guide from two Sacramento bloggers that’s super helpful and real!
Bathroom Spring Cleaning
There are a few things to tackle in your bathroom. Obviously the general cleaning to be done, but also tackling your medicine cabinet and cleaning out your beauty items. And take the time to clean your makeup brushes because they’re disgusting, trust me!
And then comes everything in the cupboards or under the sink. I hate to tell you this, but pull it all out and figure out what needs to stay, where necessary items should go, what can find a new home, and what you need to properly get rid of!
You can also try these eco friendly cleaning products (all homemade and inexpensive).
Car Spring Cleaning
I don’t usually think about my car, but isn’t it great to get in a clean, clutter-free car? So let’s think about our cars because we do a lot of things in there.
Tidy Mom has a great list of items to clean and organize in your car to help get you started!
Office Spring Cleaning
If you work from home and you’re like me, you’re organized but there is stuff all over your desk. Devote some time to organizing your desktop, rethinking your drawers, and figuring out your mail system.
And don’t forget to declutter your mailbox (the one in from of your place and in your email).