Having people over this weekend and no time to clean? Check out these simple tips that can make it look like you did!
If I were to name the number one thing that makes me crazy, it is clutter. It makes my rooms seem smaller, it takes up space on counters, and quite frankly, it makes my brain go a little bit nutso.
1. Meet crap baskets. Yep, that’s really what we call them, hopefully I didn’t offend you by using such a strong word. The rule in my house is if you leave it around, no matter what it is, it must be of no value to you, therefore it is just crap. There is a basket for each kid on our steps going upstairs to the bedrooms. and it is where the stuff goes that belongs in bedrooms without having to take it all the way up there all the time. In theory, they get emptied every night either by the owner, or by me. If I am the one emptying it, one may never be sure of where I may empty the contents.
2. These are simple laundry hampers. I like them because they have tops, which makes them even better at hiding clutter. They are mainly to be used by me at night when I discover things that were supposed to be picked up as part of our nightly chores in jurisdictions, but I didn’t catch the person responsible for not putting these things away. I discovered that I feel so much better when I can go to bed with a clean area and wake up to a clean area in the morning. These also work good for hiding things in a pinch when unexpected guests are on their way, or already at your door. There will always be someone who can distract a visitor while others make good use of the hamper. Not that I would have any personal experience with this, however. I have three baskets, one upstairs to collect things from the upstairs steps and hallway, one for things from the main living areas, and one for things that belong downstairs.
3. This magazine file was a true life saver for me since paper things whether bills, mail, school papers, or just something that I need to get to at some point seem to multiply like crazy. Paper clutter makes me cranky, so does stuff all over my countertop. This has been a great solution for me, the important thing, however, is making sure you empty it at least every other day to avoid forgetting things you were supposed to take care of, like bills that need to be paid. Again, not that I would have let this pile up to an overflowing mess over several days or anything.
4. Some sort of bins with lids for kids who have trouble with clutter in their rooms are things that make me smile. I would be lying if I said that knowing these are stuffed to the brim with anything and everything didn’t bother me, but I guess I have learned to be ok with the fact that at least their room looks clean.
5. The fifth strategy isn’t a place to put things, rather, a plan to put in place. I live in the North and live in a two-story home, which means that I have three levels. Each morning and each night, I find it so very rewarding to set a timer for 10 minutes on each floor to do a speed clean. This has no forethought, no real game plan, and no order to it within a floor as it is really just a matter of setting the timer and taking care of whatever I might trip over first. Resist the urge to use this time to fold laundry, clean a bathroom, or do dishes as these tasks, although needed, are not doing anything to eliminate clutter. It is amazing at what you can accomplish when you are trying to beat the clock.
The list of things to do, especially with a busy family living life never ends, I am convinced. But, we can do things that can keep us in our happy place, and it is even better if our homes can be our happy place.