We want to help you start the new year off right – with an clean and organized home! This January, give our 31-day challenge a try! Each day we will feature a tip or suggestion on what you can do in your home on our Facebook page. Here on the blog, we’re breaking this challenge into two parts: our previous post covered part one and include 15 different areas of the home to organize for the first half of the month, and in this post we will cover the rest of the month. Here are the last 15 challenges:
Time to tackle the toys! This challenge may not be for everyone, but if you have kids, this is one that they can get involved in. Gather up the toys around your house and designate a play/toy room. Have your kids help you go through toys and separate them into a “keep” and “donate” pile. Instead of storing all the “keep” toys in a toy bin, organize them in a way that makes sense to your kids in clear bins so they’re easily recognizable, and in a location that is easily accessible to them.
17. Chargers and Electronic Accessories
There are chargers and cables and wires for everything, which means your home can get cluttered with them. However, a lot of electronic devices have the same charging cords or accessories, so go through your chargers and if you have more than two of the same charger, chances are you don’t need anymore. Label your wires with tape or in marked containers so you and others will remember what they are used for – eliminating the problem of having a drawer full of cables and no idea what they are for.
18. Bedroom Closets
When organizing your closet, you want to make it easy for yourself to see items and take them out. Keep items off the ground, but if you have to, put them into a clear bin. Loose items can get in the way and make for a cluttered closet. Hang like items with like, and when placing items on shelves, make it easy to get items out without disturbing the rest. Try rolling items or keeping smaller stacks of clothing. Your closet shouldn’t be stuffed to the max, but have room to move or add new items.
19. Laundry Room
Empty out any cabinets, drawers, bins, or shelves in your laundry and sort through your items. Toss out unneeded or expired items, and replenish items that are low. When putting items away, follow the usual storage principles: like with like, designated areas for certain items, label and/or use clear bins, and put frequently used items in the most accessible location.
20. Cleaning Supplies
Gather up all your cleaning supplies, and toss out anything that is expired. Replace or replenish items as needed. Store the items in a way that makes sense to you. Consider placing items in clear and labelled bins which makes it easier to transport supplies to and from the rooms in your home and where you store them when cleaning.
21. Plastic Containers
Drag out all your plastic containers (we know you have a lot of them!) and start by sorting like items with like: lids together, containers together, and so on. Anything that doesn’t have a matching lid or container is recycled. All of your containers should fit into ONE drawer or shelf. You don’t need anymore than that, and you don’t always have to keep the reusable take out containers either!
22. Magazines and Books
Overflowing with books and magazines? It’s time to let go of them! Gather up all the magazines and books in your home, and only keep what you will actually read. Be honest! There are many places like dentist and doctor’s offices and schools that can benefit from the items that are taking up space in your home. If you’re keeping magazines for specific articles or recipes, cut them out and place them into a binder – you don’t need to keep the whole magazine.
23. Junk Drawers
Do you really even need a junk drawer? The name itself implies that what you’re keeping are items that you consider to be junk. So what are you waiting for? Today’s the day to purge! Empty out your drawer and go through each item – have you used in the past three-six months? Do you really need it? If you answered no to these questions, then donate or get rid of that item. If you do use them, then find a more appropriate place to store it.
With the holiday season just ending, now is a great time to go through all of your decorations. Be realistic about how many of them you actually put up, and what decorations stay in storage. Donate these unused items, and store decorations in clear or labelled containers. Sort in a way that makes sense to you, like tree ornaments in one, wreaths in one, lights in another, for example. Because these decorations are used only once a year, the bins can be placed in garages or storage rooms on higher shelves.
25. Sentimental Items
Items that have a special emotional attachment are hard to deal with. Instead of hiding these objects in a box somewhere in your home, bring them out and see if you can actually use them or display them (without adding clutter to your home). If you have items that you don’t remember or don’t care to see/use everyday, maybe they aren’t as sentimental as you thought they were.
26. Movies and CDs
When organizing movies and CDs, first check to make sure that all the right CDs/DVDs are in their corresponding cases. Then go through them and donate any that are old and won’t be watched again, and discard any discs that are scratched. When storing, organize with a system that works for you like alphabetical or by genre.
It’s a new year, so make sure your calendar or family calendar is organized and up to date. For this month, get everyone to write down that they have going on. Make sure important appointments and events are written down for everyone in the household. Keep this up throughout the year to make for a more organized life!
28. Craft Supplies
Craft supplies can take up a lot of room, and the smaller bits and pieces can get lost in closets and storage rooms. To organize these items today, take everything that you have around your house out and get rid of any containers with empty supplies, or anything that is dried up or not working anymore. Be realistic: are there any items you don’t use anymore? Consider donating them to schools or other organizations. Storing items in clear bins or containers and using labels will help you remember in the future what items you have and where.
29. Coats and Outerwear
With winter underway, coats, scarves, mitts, toques, and hats are sure to crowd your closet. While these are essential items, multiple pairs of mitts may not be so practical. Time to go through your outerwear – anything that is worn or has holes should be discarded. Anything older that you’ve been storing in the back of the closet should be donated.
30. Front Entryway
When you’re first coming in your front door, you don’t want to be greeted by a pile of shoes and outerwear. Keep your front entryway limited to everyday coats and shoes – one or two jackets/pairs. Other seasonal items should be stored in your bedroom or hallway closet. This way, when you have guests over, they won’t be tripping over shoes or have no space to hang up their own coat.
31. Staying Organized
We’ve now reached the end of our 31 Days to an Organized Home Challenge! Now that you’ve got your house all organized, the final challenge is to keep it up year round. Congratulations on completing the challenge and good luck in the year ahead!