Organizing Challenges Mini Organizing Challenges: January For each week of January, our mini challenges will be focused on “Zoning in on Clutter Hot Spots.” Week 1 (December 28 - January 3) Zone in and organize your kitchen counter. The kitchen is the “central hub” for most families, so it’s very easy for clutter to build in this room, specifically the kitchen counter. Assess the appliances on the counter…are they used often or hardly at all. Would it serve you better to move them inside a cabinet to increase counter space and/or to give your kitchen a less cluttered look? Consider also, if they’re not used frequently enough, if they’re even worth keeping in the first place. Corral everyday clutter…coupons, school papers, etc. What about cookbooks? If you use them, great! If not (perhaps you get all your recipes from Pinterest these days), donating them may score you tons of extra space. Week 2 (January 4 - January 10) Zone in and organize your bedroom closet. The beginning of the year is a great time to assess your wardrobe. Most people only wear 80% of the clothes in their closets. Look at each piece. If you love it and you wear it often, great! If you don’t like it, you’re not sure about it, you don’t like the way it fits, etc., it’s a candidate for your donation box. This includes all clothing items, shoes, and accessories. Week 3 (January 11 - January 17) Zone in and organize your cosmetics and toiletries. These two categories are huge clutter hot spots. Most people have way more than they’ll ever use…and almost all of the time, there are lots of expired products. First, get rid of anything expired (if you’re getting rid of medicines, be sure to “safely” dispose of them.) Then, get rid of anything you don’t like…the perfume you bought that you liked in the store, but don’t like now…the shampoo that makes your hair stiff…the disposable razors that nick your skin every time you use them, etc. Then, organize the keepers, using storage containers to keep like-items contained. Week 4: (January 18 - January 24) Zone in and organize your home office desk…or wherever you keep your incoming bills and paperwork. Papers, paper…everywhere. Whatever happened to the paperless society? Weed out papers you no longer need. File papers you need to keep. Take action on papers requiring your attention. Week 5: (January 25 - January 31) Zone in and organize your refrigerator. The refrigerator, for most families, is one of the biggest clutter hot spots there are, believe it or not. Get rid of any expired food…or anything you and your family are never going to eat. The rule of thumb, if you can’t find an expiration date…if you can’t even remember when you bought it (like the jar of Maraschino cherries I just pitched), it shouldn’t be taking up space in the fridge. Keep all leftovers on one shelf and make this your go-to shelf before cooking new food. Keep like-items together. Finally, before buying anything new, ask yourself if you’re going to use the item often enough to make the purchase. For instance, if a recipe calls for one tablespoon of hoison sauce…unless you’re planning on making many Asian cuisine recipes, it’s probably not worth the purchase…or the space it’s taking in your refrigerator.
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Organizing Challenges Mini Organizing Challenges: January For each week of January, our mini challenges will be focused on “Zoning in on Clutter Hot Spots.” Week 1 (December 28 - January 3) Zone in and organize your kitchen counter. The kitchen is the “central hub” for most families, so it’s very easy for clutter to build in this room, specifically the kitchen counter. Assess the appliances on the counter…are they used often or hardly at all. Would it serve you better to move them inside a cabinet to increase counter space and/or to give your kitchen a less cluttered look? Consider also, if they’re not used frequently enough, if they’re even worth keeping in the first place. Corral everyday clutter…coupons, school papers, etc. What about cookbooks? If you use them, great! If not (perhaps you get all your recipes from Pinterest these days), donating them may score you tons of extra space. Week 2 (January 4 - January 10) Zone in and organize your bedroom closet. The beginning of the year is a great time to assess your wardrobe. Most people only wear 80% of the clothes in their closets. Look at each piece. If you love it and you wear it often, great! If you don’t like it, you’re not sure about it, you don’t like the way it fits, etc., it’s a candidate for your donation box. This includes all clothing items, shoes, and accessories. Week 3 (January 11 - January 17) Zone in and organize your cosmetics and toiletries. These two categories are huge clutter hot spots. Most people have way more than they’ll ever use…and almost all of the time, there are lots of expired products. First, get rid of anything expired (if you’re getting rid of medicines, be sure to “safely” dispose of them.) Then, get rid of anything you don’t like…the perfume you bought that you liked in the store, but don’t like now…the shampoo that makes your hair stiff…the disposable razors that nick your skin every time you use them, etc. Then, organize the keepers, using storage containers to keep like-items contained. Week 4: (January 18 - January 24) Zone in and organize your home office desk…or wherever you keep your incoming bills and paperwork.  Papers, paper…everywhere. Whatever happened to the paperless society? Weed out papers you no longer need. File papers you need to keep. Take action on papers requiring your attention. Week 5: (January 25 - January 31) Zone in and organize your refrigerator. The refrigerator, for most families, is one of the biggest clutter hot spots there are, believe it or not. Get rid of any expired food…or anything you and your family are never going to eat. The rule of thumb, if you can’t find an expiration date…if you can’t even remember when you bought it (like the jar of Maraschino cherries I just pitched), it shouldn’t be taking up space in the fridge. Keep all leftovers on one shelf and make this your go-to shelf before cooking new food. Keep like-items together. Finally, before buying anything new, ask yourself if you’re going to use the item often enough to make the purchase. For instance, if a recipe calls for one tablespoon of hoison sauce…unless you’re planning on making many Asian cuisine recipes, it’s probably not worth the purchase…or the space it’s taking in your refrigerator.
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