Creating a less stressful home doesn't have to be a daunting task (or a task just for you). In fact, doing this with your family is a great way to get everyone engaged in having a cleaner and happier home!
Start with the room you think needs the most work. To avoid being overwhelmed, make a mental list of what you want to do first. Start with cleaning out junk drawers and removing all of the old items and garbage. Secondly, sort through the stuff you have on the floor into piles organized by where they need to go. Then, put the items away. After that, dust and clean. Creating an easy storage system (like a hamper for dirty clothes in the corner or a neat mail file for mail) will make it easier to put things where they need to go.
To keep your house clean and sparkling every week (and not face the issue that forced you to deep-clean in the first place), create a to-do list for your entire family. Use a large chalkboard (or a DIY chart like this lunch one) that can be written on and erased frequently. To motivate your kids to help with the cleaning, give them a prize each week they keep their room/common room clean.
Go through regular purges of your house to get rid of junk, garbage and items that can be donated. Practice this with all of your rooms -- especially the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom closet -- to ensure your entire house remains clutter-free. Keep an inventory of all of your items to easily cross-check duplicates and things you don't use.
To make things easier to find (and easier to put away), label all of your drawers, jars and baskets accordingly. Label everything -- from your spice jars to your sock drawers -- to make sure it's as easy as possible to keep things organized. Labeling is especially helpful for kids because it gives them a clear place to put their stuff. Print these labels and put them in plastic luggage tags for easy home organization.
If you're like us, you know your home will never be immaculate. Instead of trying to meet the impossible, do what works best for your family. We keep baskets, bins and hooks by each of our doors so our kids can have somewhere to (neatly) toss their shoes, socks, backpacks, jackets, etc. Hooks also work wonders for hanging pots, pans and bowls in the kitchen so they aren't cluttered in the pantry. They're also great for keeping the laundry room organized.
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