I'm excited to welcome Emma from Smile As It Happens as the guest-author of today's post! Hope you enjoy these great suggestions for spring cleaning! -Aliesha
The other day I heard some birds chirping outside my window. That means it’s time to get the winter dust out of the house and start my spring cleaning! I may be the only one, but I love spring cleaning. It’s the chance to open windows that have been closed for what feels like forever, and the chance to empty out closets and toy boxes and get rid of all the broken and outgrown items.
I tend to stray away from the typical spring-cleaning checklist, although that is always a good place to start. I like to get the house to a standard level of cleanliness, then completely destroy it, then reorganize it. Somehow the ritualistic destruction makes me feel more productive.
Start With the Basics
I start with a once over of the basic house cleaning; everything goes to its assigned room, the place is tidied and vacuumed. Then I start with the closets. I go room to room and empty out every single closet. I vacuum out the closet floors, get all the cobwebs out, and decide if I am keeping the shelving/storage the way it is. Usually I am, but sometimes I get a bit crazy. Last year, I ended up with a bunch of milk crates, so I built a cubby shelf out of them for the kid’s closet. It was so much easier to see their clothes folded in the crates than it was in their dresser drawers, and since their nightstands have drawers, they were able to store small things like socks and underwear in those. I ended up repainting that dresser and using it as a television stand and storage for sheets and blankets in the guest bedroom.
Donate or Decorate
Once I have decided to keep the storage, I start reassembling the closets, removing any items that we no longer need and putting them in the soon-to-be-giant pile for Goodwill. I keep any jackets or clothing that can be used for lawn scarecrows for the next Halloween, so jackets, button down shirts, and jeans without holes stay and get moved to my Halloween decorations storage box, along with any sheets that I decide to dispose of from the linen storage. They make wonderful ghosts hanging from the trees.
I try to be very organized about holiday decorations being stored in their labeled bins, but with two kids, inevitably I find decorations from Christmas, New Years, and Valentine’s Day tucked away into a drawer or closet. This is when they get returned to their rightful place.
Leave no Drawer Unturned
Once the closets are all reassembled, I do the same thing with dressers and anything with a drawer. Toy boxes get dumped and wiped out, dresser drawers get upended. I go through the same process with every item: refold, decide if we are keeping it, put it away or donate it.
Then I move to the kitchen. Every cupboard gets emptied. In the kitchen I wash everything before I put it back. Then it’s on to the pantry. If I haven’t used the item in a year, it gets donated to the local food pantry, no questions asked.
The same thing in the bathroom; every medicine cabinet gets completely emptied, wiped down and reassembled. I’ve recently become more conscious of the kinds of chemical products I’ve been using to clean my home. I haven’t cut them from my home completely yet, but I do use a healthy cleaning guide to find the safest ones.
Once I have emptied every closet, drawer and cabinet, I move on to moving large pieces of furniture. Each piece gets moved at least once to be vacuumed or cleaned behind and under. Then every curtain in the house comes down and gets washed. I’m no expert in interior design and don’t have a huge budget for home decor, but I do try to spruce things up once a year. There are plenty of great posts online that provide simple tips on how you can makeover your home’s interior.
Once that’s all done, I only have to do another quick vacuum and my house is completely cleaned and aired out for spring. I hope this roadmap assists you on your big spring clean!
Emma Banks (of Smile As It Happens) is a DIY enthusiast and mother of two who is always looking for new, creative ways to spruce up her home. With spring right around the corner, it's the perfect time to get a jump on cleaning and begin some new projects.