Purging

What better time to get purging than a time when many of us have been destined to our home for weeks now. Not to mention it’s springtime and nothing feels better than gettin
things cleaned up.
It’s amazing how quickly kids’ stuff piles up – toys, books, clothes, that thing they found on the ground the other day – all cluttering up your home and adding extra time to the regular chores.
I am forever trying to find new ways to organize my home that will save me time and make it easy for my little guys to help out too. While my home is still a work in progress, I thought I would share with you some of the tricks I have found.
Purge, Purge, Purge
Broken? Hasn’t had batteries for months? Shoved in the back of a closet since last spring? Time to get rid of it. Buy/sell groups are great for selling used kids’ toys and clothing and there are always organizations that are looking for donations. For right now, organizations aren’t taking donations but you can still organize them into bins or boxes to be donated at a later time.
Put away excess
With the changing seasons come a variety of different toys and outdoor gear. Right now, with spring finally starting, we are putting away shovels and sleds and taking out our sandbox toys, skipping ropes, chalk and bubbles. Help to keep our yard somewhat tidy. One way to keep everything organized is to put everything in labelled bins (I like using clear bins so I can see at a glance what is inside) and only keep out a limited number of things at a time. I like to do a toy rotation every month or two, when I pack up most of what I have out and bring out a different bin of toys. This helps keep toy clutter to a minimum, and means what is out actually gets played with. Not to mention the added bonus of the toys that come back out are as good as new.
Everything in its place
It is so much easier to tidy up quickly if everything has a place to go. Make kids’ items easy to put away by using low storage bins or shelves that they can access by themselves. Take the time to go through their room or a toy/common area room with them to discuss where everything goes so that they can help to maintain some kind of order with your help.
Kids, especially younger ones, love to help out, but we all know that sometimes that can add extra work for us (like when my two-year-old tried to sweep up the cereal he spilled on the floor – yikes.). Teaching our little ones how to properly do age appropriate chores, and then allowing them to strike out on their own, fosters independence and responsibility and takes a few things off your plate. Even babies can help by working together with mom or dad to put toys back in their bins. Toddlers can help by putting toys and books away, putting laundry in the hamper, making their bed, and dusting (try putting a sock on their hand and make a game out of wiping down surfaces). Older kids can set the table, load the dishwasher, put away laundry, water plants and even help make lunches. Making clean-up time part of your routine helps keep the house feeling a little more tidy and organized and makes the deep clean days go a little faster. With everyone home right now, it’s time to come up with some sort of clean-up routine that everyone can get involved with, don’t be afraid to put your school-aged children to work, there’s lots they can do and learn to do.

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