Amidst the chaos of virtual schooling, virtual meeting, in-person working and endless amounts of meals and snacks and dishes, we almost forgot that it’s almost time for spring cleaning!
(We’re the kind of people who are generally keenly aware of and extremely excited by this joyful season!)
Before we all roll up our sleeves and get into cleaning mode, we want to suggest a few items in your home that are likely in need of some attention.
If you share our enthusiasm for a yearly household revamp, here are four items we encourage you to tackle decluttering before the official spring cleaning season rolls in because, well, it’s never too early to start!
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You may be surprised that we’re suggesting that you start with a non-physical item, but in this virtual/email/Zoom overload world we’re all living in, there’s nothing like a massively cluttered inbox to start the day off in a chaotic way.
We’re all living in our email inboxes these days, and email offers and newsletters can quickly fill up our screens.
In our case, they can also tempt us to do more online shopping than we really need!
The quick fix is to delete any junk mail — but remember that it will be a daily, ongoing process to keep your inbox tidy with this method alone. If you really want to commit to less virtual junk, we recommend that you take the time to unsubscribe from any emails that are cluttering up your digital space.
Photo by Lauren Mancke on Unsplash
MISMATCHED FOOD STORAGE
We’re eating leftovers for days around here, which means that our food storage containers are getting quite a lot of love and attention. Well, our favorite ones are, at least. And that leads us to our next suggestion…
Kick out those mismatched and less useful storage containers! If it’s missing a lid, or if all you have is a lid, it doesn’t deserve to take up valuable space in your kitchen.
Please repurpose the containers if you can (think utility drawer organizers or craft containers), responsibly recycle the rest and enjoy a food storage collection that DOESN’T drive you crazy!
P.S. Our personal favorites are linked below. If you’re looking to invest in some long-term pieces, we love the sustainability of these glass containers and that you can get replacement lids if you need to. (Seriously, where do lids and socks actually go?)
UNCOMFORTABLE OR ILL-FITTING CLOTHES
We cannot type this without acknowledging that we’ve been living in a pandemic for a full year. Many of us are still wearing sweatpants a lot of the time, and clothing might seem extra difficult to let go of because you hope to be able to wear it again someday!
However, we think that these PJ-wearing days may actually be a great time to start the editing process. We strongly believe that everyone deserves to have a curated wardrobe with only items they love and feel great about, especially as we imagine navigating our post-pandemic lives.
We recommend looking through your closet and thinking about what you’re actually excited to wear again. Are there items that you’ve completely forgotten about or not even missed? Those are an easy “goodbye.” Doing this now ensures that when the time for real clothing comes, you and your closet will be well prepared to enjoy the outside world again!
Expiration dates are the bane of a well-stocked home — and yet they keep us from eating moldy food or slathering less-than-effective cream on our faces.
Our final must-declutter item(s) can be found ALL OVER our homes and deserve to be tackled at least every single year.
- PANTRY — We definitely think that “once a year” is a minimum for this space… so if it’s been a little while for you, it’s definitely time again! Scan through all of your cans and jars and any backstock items to ensure nothing that has gone past its expiry date. If you have items that are not yet expired but that you know won’t get eaten in your home, PLEASE donate them to a local food pantry before they do expire!
- SELF-CARE + BEAUTY SUPPLIES — We’re huge proponents of culling through makeup and beauty items at least once a year, as well. Check the (often tiny) labels on the back of your products to learn their expiration dates and safely dispose of anything that is past its prime. If you can’t remember when you purchased or opened an item, it’s likely expired, as the typical date is generally 6-12 months from opening.
- VITAMINS + MEDICINES — Make sure you’re not holding onto any bottles of long-since effective vitamins or past-their-prime medications. Remember that these often need to be safe-recycled, and please check your local area for drop off locations.
- EMERGENCY SUPPLIES — If you’re like Joni, you have already scheduled recurring annual reminders in your calendar to check these supplies specifically. The rest of us may have created an emergency checklist, stocked up on all of our disaster supplies and then promptly forgotten all about them. Schedule some time to go through your emergency food and water supplies to ensure that everything is still fresh. Earn bonus points by testing and checking batteries, electronic devices and seals on your disaster preparedness items!
We hope that your pre-spring cleaning decluttering sessions are successful and satisfying!
P.S. If you’ve read this list and don’t need to tackle a single item on it, please email us and tell us your secret!
Cover image by Amy Bartlam
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