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10 Secrets to Keeping a Tidy Home

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Do you have certain things that clutter up your home? I know I do, but with a few tips and tricks, it really is possible to have a tidy home. Some days it can seem like a never-ending battle since I live with 10 people, but knowing a few tidy home tips can make all the difference.

I think it is a universal truth that clutter can get the best of us at times. It is also so crazy that no matter what kind of clutter it is, it has a way of multiplying faster than the speed of light, at least in my home.

I have found that keeping on top of a few basic things can help tremendously…that and my crap baskets! If you don’t know what I’m talking about click on this link to read Five Simple Strategies to Hiding Clutter. My secrets are all in there!

In addition, to my clutter hiding tricks, here are the things I find it necessary to keep on top of in order to stay on top of clutter.

secrets to tidy home

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Mail, school papers, pictures colored by little ones – they are everywhere! I do my best to abide by the “one-touch” rule, not just setting paper clutter somewhere to take care of later, but for the times that I can’t, the magazine file I spoke of in the post on hiding clutter does the trick.


Picking up clothes is an ongoing chore in my house. I have no idea how clothes appear where they do sometimes, but they do nonetheless. Whether clean or dirty, clothes seem to be everywhere  – a lot! I am not always perfect at picking up my own clothes, but it really isn’t hard to put my clothes in the dirty laundry right when I take them off. Doing this really does make a huge difference.


I think we can all agree that these multiply, too. Dishes are done almost right way here, and it helps stay on top of it. After all, who wants to deal with crusty, dried on food, anyway?

My garage

Ok, so this isn’t technically in my house, but it is the walkway to my house, which is why this is another sticking point for me. With such a large family, we have a ton of stuff in our garage, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a mess. Now, if only I could convince my kids of this!


Clutter on the steps is not only an annoyance, it is also a safety hazard. I could almost swear that my steps are magnetic as stuff just collects and collects, and collects there. My crap baskets do a nice job, but I usually have to insist that these baskets and the steps in general are taken care of three times a day in order to keep them clutter free.

Little snippets of trash

You know, the little things that pages ripped from a spiral notebook leave behind, little pieces of food that someone carried with them from their lap without noticing, and wrappers for this, that, and the other thing. Trash drives me absolutely crazy!


We don’t wear our shoes in the house, which means that shoes are always taken off at the door. With up to 18 shoes by the door if each person only leaves one pair behind, we can have a mountain of shoes in no time. Staying on top of shoes is essential.


This one may be obvious, but I guess that’s why it has to be on this list. Toys, especially big ones, can clutter a room in no time flat!

Girls hair pretties

If you have girls, I think you know just what I mean. Hair ties, bows, ribbons, bows, headbands, and hair pins. Enough said on this one!


Do your kids drag their blankets all over the house? I suppose maybe not if you life in the South, but my kids are always cold and dragging their blankets all over like a cape. Then, of course, they just drop them wherever they are standing. I have six kids who all drag blankets around. I’m sure you can imagine why this is one of my sticking points for controlling clutter.

Does clutter drive you crazy? Maybe the things that clutter your house are different from mine, but chances are you have your “hot button” items when it comes to things that clutter your home. Determine what these items are for you, choose ten of them, and then focus on developing systems and solutions that keep these things under control.


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  1. It can get cold in the south too! Our solution to the blanket problem was to get each child a big, fuzzy robe. It keeps them warm, and it stays on their body as they move around the house! There’s a hook on the wall in their room so they can hang it up when it’s not in use.

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