Upside Down, Inside Out tips to start spring cleaning now!
It’s just about that time of year, readers – get ready for some spring cleaning! Since it’s always a good idea to blast some high energy tunes while cleaning (so that you maybe have some fun too) this post is inspired by Miss Diana Ross (who I’m sure has her maids perform a thorough spring cleaning every year) and one of my favorite booty shaking, spring cleaning worthy songs “Upside Down”.
Since this classic hit the air before the glory days of videos, check out this super peppy live performance with a great cameo from Michael Jackson that inspires Diana to really shake her thing! We’re going to start shaking our things by getting a jump on spring cleaning…
Upside: I love the idea behind spring-cleaning – the freshness of the time of year that inspires us to give our homes the kind of detailed cleaning attention that the rest of the year just doesn’t see. That is the upside! If you get some great cleaning in now you never have to do it again! Er…until next spring.
Down: As in, get down with how hip and radical you are (spring cleaning in February!?) You’re not going to procrastinate on your spring-cleaning this year, are you? No way, because YOU have a plan!
While there are endless things to do for total spring cleaning, if you start off with just two little items: getting the kitchen in order and safely archiving your files, you will be a giant step forward in your spring cleaning duties. Plus, you’ll begin to feel better, inside and out.
Inside: As we get closer to spring everyone and their yogi seems to be either on a cleanse, or planning for one. Spring-cleaning internally! However, I’m going to keep my digits off of your digestion and focus on the insides of your kitchen. At least for now!
This way you will be set up for any dietary changes you want to make naturally with the season. I think we all start to eat more lightly as a matter of course as the weather heats up and that means we use our kitchens differently than we did in the cooler months.
Out: Finally, a little archiving – out with the old and in with the new! I love this part of spring-cleaning but I almost never see it done. Though it is simple, I think it gets overlooked because we just start the new year and never look back…until things get overwhelming. Don’t let this happen!
I’ve got some tips for jumping out and ahead of the spring cleaning time schedule – 5 tips to jump into spring cleaning:
1. Make your move: Time to move some things around! Put the heavy baking artillery up high. The more it heats up outdoors the less likely we are to heat up the kitchen. Bring out all of the salad gear so it is front and center. Everything you use to prepare and present these beauties you want within arms reach. Make sure blenders and small hand mixers used for smoothies are nearby as well. If there is cookware that you realize you never use, no matter what the season, move it to the garage or better yet – donate it.
2. Breaking up/Stocking up: As you are moving appliances around, notice if there are broken appliances, plates etc that can be removed entirely. Things break all the time but having one full matching (or carefully mismatched) set of dishes for 8-12 settings and glassware is a good goal. Get rid of the odds and ends as they take up room. If you have a fancy set, you can save it for special occasions, but have a great full set you love to use daily.
Also make note of any supplies you are running low on and place an order on Amazon or wherever is easiest for you. Check the pantry and aim to get rid of 25% of the canned and preserved food. We usually have items for years and it can go bad.
3. The Fridge: I’m not gonna lie – this is a bear of job but so worth it. (This is your food we’re talking about after all!) Now is the time to set aside a few hours to tackle the beast. Go through every nook and cranny, pull out every item and and throw out anything past the date of freshness. Once every thing is out of the fridge wipe down the interior, sides and bottom really well. I suggest using a gentle cleanser like Dr. Bronner’s since you are in an area that houses your food. Then place everything back in “like with like.” Place all the dressings together, the juices, etc. Get rid of doubles and things that are almost gone, (don’t forget to recycle!) That way you know what you have, what you have too much of and what you need. If you’re really feeling it, sweep behind the refrigerator too!
4. Archive the Paper: Each year whether you are filing documents digitally or in paper files, you still need to make room for the current year. Where should the previous year go? In an archive!
a. Get a Bankers Box from Amazon, Staples, Office Depot, etc. Imo, this type of box is the best way to archive the past year’s paperwork. I like to use the boxes made with recycled materials, but there are many different options. You can even set up a subscription with Amazon to have these delivered every year!
b. Put the whole year of files in the box, label it clearly and move it to it’s office space, garage or closet. If space is an issue, check out my posts The Office Summer Slim Down which outlines how long you need to keep statements, invoices and other paperwork.
5. Archive the Digital: Purchase an additional external drive for archiving past files. This will make room on your current hard drive. I like the Iomega brand, but there are many out there that work just as well.
Are you ready to bring some serious spring-cleaning love and attention inside and out? You’ll be creating space for the new and the unexpected and soon see the upside Readers share your spring cleaning tips and advice in the comments!
Jennifer Palais clears chaos and brings order to offices, business systems, schedules and minds and is known as an organizing expert and coach. Her approach is 10-years in the making: Inspirational, well informed and practical. It is a process filled with fun, joy and discovery. For more organizing tips, follow her on Twitter.
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