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How To: SPRING Cleaning for Dummies or Lazy People

By Lavender February 26, 2010

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OK, so it might not be spring just yet…or ever, if you live in Minnesota. With 49 states reporting snow on the ground, we in fact can say that hell has frozen over. But that is no excuse for your closet giving off a smell you can’t claim for sure isn’t a dead animal, and being one big pile of random things you aren’t even certain what it once might have been. Now is the perfect time to start cleaning out your home, because we all know that when the sun starts shining again, you’re not going to do it. Don’t lie! So, let’s talk about how to go about spring cleaning.

Setting Up A Schedule

Anyone who ever has attended college knows the best solution to a daunting task is to make a list that separates things into smaller, more manageable tasks. It’s the best way to appear as if you’re accomplishing what you should be without actually doing it. Procrastination 101, people. Listing which rooms you will clean and when makes cleaning your entire home or apartment much easier. It won’t seem like such an overwhelming chore if you plan to clean only one or two rooms a day.

Cleaning Supplies

Water is not going to cut it here. You’re going to need a full arsenal of cleaning supplies. So, open up that dank and dirty cupboard in your home to see what cleaning supplies you already own. Make a list of ones you think you’ll need to clean every room in your home. This might be a good time to ponder why the space you use to store your cleaning supplies is also the dirtiest in your home. Once you have the list, head to your local store to get everything in one well-planned trip (that will turn into 20 trips, because you realized you are a horrible planner).

Starting Small

The best—and probably easiest—method of cleaning is to start in your smallest room. This will allow you to accomplish part of the task, and actually make you feel like you can do it. Yes, you can. Give yourself a cookie! But make sure you clean everything in the room. That means going through drawers and closets, cleaning them out as well. Yes. That closet you have been using as a catchall for everything in your home needs to be cleaned out and organized, too.

Throwing It Away

This is the time of year when you have to learn to throw things away. Just because you’ve hung onto that shoebox for the shoes you bought two years ago, but no longer have, doesn’t mean you still need to keep it. If you haven’t used it in the past year, chances are you never will. So, yes, that beautiful homemade blanket your Grandma made (you always wondered if she was colorblind or just blind when she made it for you) should be thrown away—unless you actually plan to use it, that is—because keeping it just to keep it is not a good enough reason. Same goes for every other thing you come across, and have forgotten you owned. If you forgot you had it, you won’t miss it. Same goes for broken objects, things missing parts, or any piece of clothing you no longer wear, or are hanging onto just in case. Donate them to a local charity, and let someone really use them.


Organization

As you are going through everything during your cleaning spree, it’s the perfect time to organize as well. Organization is good for two reasons. First, it makes it easier for you to find what you’re looking for later without going through a panic, thinking you lost it. Second, it allows you a chance to keep things cleaner for just a bit longer. When something has a place to go, you can put it where it belongs, instead of just tossing it to the Closet Monster to be lost and forgotten until your next dreaded spring cleaning.

Repeat, Repeat, Repeat

Now that you’ve gotten one room clean, its time to move on to the next. Don’t you just feel all good inside knowing you cleaned out one of your rooms, which sparkles with cleanliness, and you’re willing to beat the first person to make it dirty? (Beating someone is a joke, because that pesky thing known as the law always gets in the way of such things, anyway.)

Cleaning one room may seem like enough, but you can’t quit now. It’s a boring task, but it needs to be done, unless you just want to hire someone to do it for you…actually, that seems like a good idea now that I mention it. You know what? Ignore everything I just said. Go to the Yellow Pages, look up a cleaning service, and make it do the work. Go watch another episode of Golden Girls. Sit back and enjoy watching someone else do what you’re too lazy to do in the first place. Besides, that person is going to do a better job of it than you ever could attempt.

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