Friday, 18 September 2015

Preparing for autumn


Just a few days at home this week (and the services of a pro cleaner, as you can read about here) has really helped us to get things a bit more ship shape for the new season.

Every three or four months, I feel the need to have a big sort out so that anything old is packed or given away to create room for the new things we need. Why just have a spring clean, when a busy house means you accumulate 'stuff' all year round?

It seems I'm not the only one, as I've just seen a post by Hannah at Mum's Days about a Japanese book called The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up which seems to be sweeping the world by storm (sorry for the pun!). The general ethos seems to be clearing clutter for good and reaping the awards - it sounds ruthless and fascinating so check out this post by Hannah and her upcoming posts on how she's implementing the rules from this book to find out more.

So, what does an 'autumn clean' look like? Here's what we've been doing in our house:

* The big clothes swap

Down come the suitcases from the loft, filled with warm coats and snuggly jumpers. All our winter clothes have been unpacked this week, so we have everything from boots, hats and scarves through to our winter coats and layered items now in our wardrobes (and under the bed, as clothes take up more room at this time of year!).

In their place, our summer clothes, including unworn maxi dresses, are going back into the suitcases and into the loft until next spring at the very least. We don't have the space to keep everything in our wardrobes and this way, we know we have what we need close to hand.

We also review our clothes as we get them down and when we store them away, to make sure that anything looking a little worse for wear either gets thrown or donated, depending on condition. I'm trying to be much more ruthless so if it hasn't been worn for a season, it's gone!


* Clear the clutter

I have no idea where half the clutter in our house comes from (I swear untidy pixies sneak in during the night to dump random crap here and there to fill all our cupboards and drawers) and it's one reason why I don't think I could ever face moving house.

We have taken each room in turn and had a good look and a good rummage to see what we really need and what really needs to go. When you have a few days to do this over, it's not so bad. There's the Ikea unit in the lounge, with its handy storage boxes that can hide all sorts away; each one has been checked and used as needed. There's our dresser and bureau, which both seem capable of storing twice as much as you'd expect; both have been cleared on top and inside, so there's less clutter, a logical place for everything and even space left over now.

Bills and paperwork are all in one place (with important documents like passports and insurance policies nice and safe). We only have as many glasses as we need, rather than enough to host a party for everyone we know. Tatty old cushions have given up the ghost. And every drawer and cupboard has a clear purpose now. Phew.

Whilst we have a lot of stuff in the loft, we are being much more choosy about whether something stays or goes. With Ethan well into his two's, there's been quite a few clothes, toys and other baby paraphernalia to sort through over the past year and we've kept the bigger or more expensive items (such as his pram / travel system and cot) into the loft then sold some items on eBay and donated many others to charity.

* Cupboard challenge

I think we're all guilty of buying fresh food week in and week out whilst still hoarding spices that have long since gone out of date. I've done a bit of stock-check of our cupboards, to see what we already have and work out what few things we need to turn these into meals, rather than shopping almost from scratch every week.

It would be a great challenge I think to try and use everything up before doing another shop - might force you to get creative with your cooking at the very least!

And it's helped. I may even get to clean inside these cupboards one day...


* Home sweet home

Autumn means nights in watching movies, with a snuggly blanket and candles flickering away. We've got a few bits unpacked that help us get settled in for the colder, darker nights ahead and having cleared the way first means that we can be organised and comfortable.

***

Fitting for the new season, we've been turning over a new leaf. Having had the chance to properly go through everything, sort it out, clean it and put it back where it should be, it's going to be much easier to keep things on track (she says... just check in with me in a few weeks time!).

Running in Lavender
SHARE:

4 comments

  1. I clean every day and keep everything surface tidy, but never seem to get time for the big decluttering (& not very good at letting go of things), though I'd like to. #sundaystars

    ReplyDelete
  2. I need this book in my life! I've heard about it so many times now, I've got to read it! We do this all the time. I LOVE organising and decluttering. I could honestly do it for a living. Every few months I re-go through every drawer and cupboard and sort out what we don't wear or we don't need. Everything has a place and a we don't have any clutter. It makes you feel so refreshed doesn't it? It makes it feel like you have a new home and really motivated. x #sundaystars

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have read Hannah's post prior to this. I think I need to get this book soon! I think your post is beautifully written, best description of welcoming the season of Autumn yet. :) #SundayStars

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ooh this book sounds pretty amazing, off to google it now!! I hate clutter and mess but my girls on the other hand have so much toys clutter and their room is always a bomb site. drives me you the wall! Thank you so much for linking up to #SundayStars xxx

    ReplyDelete

Blogger Template Created by pipdig