Thursday, February 1, 2018

Friday Faves...Cleaning and Decluttering, Part Three

I had every intention of posting the final post of my cleaning and decluttering series last week, but as those of you who read here regularly know, or those of you who follow me on Facebook or Instagram, last Thursday our second born daughter was hit by a pickup truck while out jogging. Your prayers for her full and complete recovery from all effects of brain trauma and damage to her ear and hearing are much appreciated. I am so thankful that our girl is still with us. Times like these remind us of the fragility of life and of what really matters, which is NOT our house and decor and decluttering but IS family, relationships, and our walk with God and eternity. With that said, here is the post I had almost completed last week and finally finished today.

While I declutter frequently, I've been inspired to declutter even more since the holidays are over. With our kitchen being updated not that long before the holidays, the kitchen cabinets had already been totally decluttered. But, I hadn't cleaned out our pantry and our bathroom cabinets and drawers so I did those.
I've also simplified my decor in some areas and gotten rid of decor that I no longer love or need. (One of those projects was removing the old ladder from my kitchen, that I was using as a pot rack, and hanging iron wall mounted pot racks, for a neater and more streamlined look as seen in the first photo of this post.  My daughter is going to use the ladder for a project in her farmhouse.)

I've even tackled some projects I've been procrastinating about-hip, hip hooray! I finally put some shelving in our master bedroom closet and got rid of even more clothes and shoes.  Our closet, is finally neat, clean and tidy! If I was richer I would put in a fancy closet system, but for now some simple shelving is sufficient.
For our always messy nightstands, I've discovered that the cure is containers.  I found the perfect lidded box for my husband's nightstand, (on clearance at Homegoods), to hold remotes, chargers and other small items that tend to collect there.

My final big challenge is to go though all of the boxes of photos and memorabilia and organize them. These are the most difficult things for me to deal with as there are more emotional attachments involved.  Mainly, I want to get those things better organized.

For those of you who may have missed it, here is part one of my cleaning and decluttering series and here is part two.  Today I'm going to end this series by writing about what I typically do when I spring and pre-holiday clean. These chores can be divided up and spread out over time as you wish.  I'm usually a "get 'er done" type person who gets in there and tries to get as much done as humanly possible all at once.

Pre-holiday/spring cleaning-

-get rid of decor that you no longer like or use whenever you get out your fall, Christmas, or other holiday decor

-Clean out kitchen cupboards and drawers, pantry and refrigerator.  Take all items out, wiping down the cupboards inside and out, getting rid of items you no longer need or use and any outdated food.

-With a long duster dust ceilings for cobwebs

-Wipe down light fixtures

-Clean carpets as needed.  (Hallelujah for wood floors in all of house except the bedrooms and my office!)  Vacuum all carpets including edges and under furniture. 

 -Mop all other floors moving furniture as necessary to get under everything.

-Wipe down all baseboards, doors and door frames

-Touch up paint any areas on walls, frames or moldings that have taken a beating or are chipped.  (I keep a small tupperware of our wall paint in my cleaning cupboard and some wall putty handy so that I can instantly repair nail holes if I move things on the walls.)

-Clean inside of windows, clean blinds, (wash/iron curtains as needed)  
(I only wash the outside of windows once a year in the summer.)

-Clean out and vacuum closets. Don't forget those edges that gather dust!
 Donate  items you no longer need, or use.

-Clean out all bathroom cupboards and drawers. Get rid of anything you no longer need or use and old or outdated products such as old makeup or medicines.

-Clean out the cupboard or closet where you keep your cleaning products. Again, get rid of anything you no longer need or use.

-If possible, clean under and behind stove, refrigerator, washer and dryer. Clean the oven, vacuum refrigerator coils, clean dryer vent, etc. (In my current house, the stove and refrigerator is impossible for me to move so I was sure to clean behind and under them well when the painters moved them to to paint our cabinets!  I'm not sure when I'll ever be able to clean under or behind them again, which kind of grosses me out.)
-Dust and wipe down any objects you keep out on display. (For example, I wash all of the ironstone I have out on display and the pots that are hanging on my pot rack.)

-As you go through your spring or pre-holiday cleaning be mindful to look for things you can get rid of.  Lightening the load of excess stuff is freeing! For example, I recently got rid of all but a handful of old decor magazines that I had hung onto but never looked at since the first time I read them!  I've donated books I don't plan to ever read again as well, and probably could stand to get rid of even more! Old craft, hobby and sewing supplies that you never use are another thing that can just take up valuable storage space. Don't feel guilty for getting rid of and donating items/gifts the someone gave you that you never use or don't love.  They aren't doing the gift giver or you any good taking up space in your closet or cupboard.  Let it go!

Well, friends, thanks for your support and encouragement about this series.  Remember, my home is not perfect and neither will yours be.  Real life and real living happens within our walls.  For me keeping things neat and tidy evokes a more peaceful and welcoming atmosphere.  At the same time, expecting perfection is not peaceful or welcoming to the people that have to live in your home.  I have to continually self correct in this area and remind myself to let my husband relax, and not expect him to measure up to my sometimes unrealistic expectations of neatness.

Have a happy Friday
a safe and blessed weekend!




  1. Dear Elizabeth, I was so shocked to read about your daughter. I will pray for her complete recovery. Is she the mama of the two little blonde granddaughters?

    1. The mama of our two oldest granddaughter and grandson and our three year old grandson.

  2. P.S. Forgot to say, thanks for your tips and letting us peek in your closets and around your lovely home. When I spotted your boots on that short shelf, I was concerned that they might get ruined. I've read of people putting a piece of pool "noodle" inside boots to keep them straight--or maybe just storing them on the top shelf, where they wouldn't be bent.

    1. Those are my husbands and I wondered the same thing!

  3. Great series, Elizabeth! Thank you for sharing your home with us!

  4. Sending prayers for you daughter. May God bless and heal her and give her a full recovery.
    Enjoying your decluttering post, have been decluttering also. Your kitchen looks beautiful.


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