A new year always makes us want to start every aspect of our lives off on the right foot. Diet, exercise, family time, and of course cleaning, organizing, and decluttering often top the list. To help you clean and get organized in 2018, we are having a fun challenge. We will be sharing a new list of tasks that can help you get on track each month this year. (We ran this same challenge in 2017 and 2018 and people loved it!)
Instead of spending a month breaking your back getting it all done instead we will help break it up into smaller tasks over the entire year. We even have a printable checklist that you can laminate and hang on your refrigerator or slip into your planner. I will be sharing 365 simple tasks that can be done each day to help you get your house in order this year. Most tasks should take 15 – 30 minutes. If it works for you do each task on the corresponding date, if not just use it as a list of tasks, some days you may get more than one done. You may wish to take off the weekend and double up on weekdays or vice versa. I want you to be successful so do what works best for you.
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Be sure to see the full list and helpful hints below the printable sign up!
Here are all the tasks we have included for January and some helpful tips.
Dust blinds, remove cobwebs from corners, and wipe off window sills– Something like this blind duster makes quick work of this chore. A damp cloth with a bit of all- purpose cleaner is great for the sills.
Remove and rewash curtains in main living areas of the house, rehang– I occasionally dust my curtains but sometimes they need a good refreshing that only a wash and hang can give them. Some curtains can be washed and rehung while still slightly damp and you won’t need to iron them, otherwise for formal curtains you can send them off to the dry cleaners.
Scrub the oven, and toss out pots, pans, and baking sheets in rough shape- After this task, you should treat yourself to a nice new pan if you need one! I could not believe how bad some of my baking sheets looked!
Start a donation box, put at least 15 items in it immediately- Toys, clothes, extra kitchen items, whatever you come across that you consider clutter and needs a new home. This is essential for helping you feel more organized and overwhelmed. I wish I had stayed on top of this the last few years. It was a HUGE project when we moved to Germany and I could not believe the number of things we had in our home we no longer needed. I know even with the amount of items I got rid of it will still be easy to find 15 more items.
Dust ceiling fans, light fixtures, replace burned out bulbs- This should take no more than 10-15 minutes to do and will make a big impact.
Replace ac/heating filter, dust vents, make service appointment to have it checked- Stock up on filters you will see this pop up every few months and keeping your filters changed regularly will keep your unit running better and longer.
Test and replace batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide alarms- This task takes just a few minutes but makes an important difference in your family safety!
Remove 1 pair of shoes, and 8 clothing items that you don’t love, add to donation box– Purging always feels good, dig into your closet or your kids and add to your donation box (if you want to add more, feel free). If you want to
Reorganize pantry, toss out expired items including spices- Check dates and toss anything past expiration, take a few minutes to reorganize and add items to your shopping list if needed.
Dump out your junk drawer, rehome items that don’t belong, reorganize- Consider grabbing one of these drawer organizers to help keep your drawer from returning to its cluttered state.
Soak all shower heads in vinegar, clean and replace caulk where needed. Snake hair out of drains.- Slip rubber band over your shower head, then place a baggie filled with vinegar over it, secure with rubber band, leave in place for a couple hours then remove. This easy trick removes hard water buildup and mildew. If you are anything like me your hair sheds like crazy in the shower and they need a good snaking now and then.
Clean keyboard, delete unused apps and pics off phone– If you have done all of this recently find something else to do similar like moving computer photos to a zip drive, cd, or usb.
Flip mattress, clean out under bed, and replace bed pillows if needed- A good spring cleaning of areas like this is a good idea several times a year.
Sort through medicine cabinet, toss out expired medicines- Call your local pharmacy or hospital and see if they have a disposal program in place. I was able to take expired medicine to my local police department.
Empty refrigerator, give it a good scrubbing, throw away nearly empty or expired containers-This one may take more than 15 minutes to do and can be broken up over a couple days if you like.
Create a family command center, add a few organizational pieces if necessary– Use a chalkboard or dry erase, hooks, and whatever else you need to streamline family life.
Wash fabric shower curtains, take out old towels and cut up for rags- If you have a vinyl curtain you can soak it in a tub with soap and a bit of bleach to sanitize.
Spend 15 minutes tackling an area that has been bugging you for awhile- Set a timer and attack that desk or tidy up the mudroom.
Go through your jewelry box, take items in for repair, get rid of single earrings, and unloved pieces.
Toss magazines older than 3 months, unsubscribe to virtual subscriptions you don’t use.
Rearrange furniture and pictures in the living room to give it a fresh new feel- Sometimes this is all you need to get out of a winter funk and freshen up your living space, and it’s free!
Vacuum and wash car, put air in tires, top off all fluids. Don’t forget to empty the trunk!
Sweep off front porch, put away any holiday decorations still out, add a new plant- Giving the front of the house a freshen up will make you smile every time you come home.
Find 5 more items to add to the donation box- Outgrown kids clothes, an extra toaster, unused rice cooker, etc… You can go over 5 of course but at least make it the minimum.
Replace ragged kitchen towels and potholders with new ones- Pass usable ones on to the garage in a rag bucket, throw away others.
Clean out dryer filter, toss mismatched socks, buy new laundry baskets if needed– I can not believe the number of mismatched socks in my home. Where do the matches go?!?
Go through PJ’s, socks, and underwear drawers– Toss or donate overly worn out items. Treat yourself to some scented drawer liners.
Empty spam, delete emails and answer a few-feels good doesn’t it?
Dust the tops of high furniture pieces- Those places we forget like the top of the entertainment center, cupboards, and armoires need attention now and then.
Wipe down baseboards throughout house- If you are so inclined after giving them a swipe with cleaner you can go back over dry trim with a dryer sheet to help repel future dust.
Take your full donation box (or two) to a local thrift store or charity center- You can pat yourself on the back for cleaning out the house and doing good!
Clean & Organize 2019
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