Friday, December 28, 2007

New Year's Organization Begun!

Pantry after cleaning

Pantry before cleaning

Laundry after cleaning

Laundry before cleaning

I spent my afternoon getting a jump on the New Year by starting my decluttering, cleaning and organizing early. I started with my laundry area and my pantry. (We rent a duplex that has seen better days, doors have fallen off both areas so often we just stopped putting them back on and yes the laundry is in the kitchen but at least it isn't in the garage. I also miss having a large sized pantry but at least I have one. )

I don't know that you can see the difference in the pictures but it makes a huge difference in person. It is a good feeling to look at the progress. Now I have to do the rest of the house.

Tip: It doesn't have to be overwhelming to declutter. Just start with one area, remove anything you don't want in that area (empty/old/expired/unused things or things that just were put there and really belong somewhere else). Put all that aside as we will come back to that later. Now you should have created a little bit of room to work. Put like items together. (I have cleaning supplies on one end of my laundry shelf and laundry supplies at the other.)Condense anything at all possible. Line things up nicely and clean as you go. When the area is done, go back to the things that you removed and find homes for them. I removed, one kitchen gadget, paper towel, coke and care car things from the floor infront of the laundry area. The gadget found a home in the newly organized pantry. The coke went into the fridge, the paper towel fit on the newly organized shelf above the laundry and the car care went out to the garage where it belonged in the first place. On top of the washer and dryer: removed and put downstairs in storage a faux chicken, put up on the shelf above; a stack of craft paper (put with other craft supplies in the middle), removed and put with cook books some paper kitchen help tools, removed and found a home on the above shelf- phone books, removed and found a home in a kitchen cabinet- an indoor grill gadget, removed (and in a perfect world mended) mending. Removed and put above with other craft items- paper cups holding water color paints.

The pantry was handled the same way. I really didn't get rid of much but just going in and organizing made all the difference. I have all my starches on one shelf, baking/seasoning on one, etc. and a clear floor.

I think I've said, earlier this month, in another post (when I was decluttering my 3 year old's room- December 6th, Clearing The Clutter) that I usually don't let things get this bad/cluttered but I've just let this home go and am paying for it now. But bit by bit is how you take control. Anything that comes into cleaned areas needs to be put properly away and not just dumped.

Do any of you have any projects like this to tackle? How do you work through it?

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