Since my back is doing somewhat better, we have been doing some spring cleaning! You know removing cobwebs, putting away winter clothes, cleaning behind bookshelves and appliances, etc. But...I have also decided we need to declutter our home! With a family of 8, with varying interests, we have a tendency to purchase things that are not really needed. You know the type of things you see on clearance or as a special buy and you are positive you can not live without them. Or because it is such a good buy you buy extra for later and then never use them. 10,001 Ways to Declutter Your Home on a Small Budget is a great help.
This book was written by Ed Morrow, Sherrie Bykofsky, and Rita Rosenkranz. I have truly enjoyed reading this book. Even the introduction is interesting. They mention how in America we purchase and acquire things because we can. There is advertising everywhere. From television to park benches to barn roofs. "It has been estimated that the average American reaching the age of 80 will have watched 2.5 million television commercials.
Can you tell I started in on my kitchen?
The first chapter "Are You a Pack Rat?" has a quiz to help you determine your clutter quotient. Here is a sample:
1. Your hamper is clean and nearly empty. Thanks to a sachet of dried apples and spices hanging inside it, it smells like mom's warm apple pie. (4 points)
2. Your hamper is nearly clean and nearly full and smells of apple pie-scented disinfectant spray. (3 points)
3. Your hamper is full and smells like a spoiled apple pie. (2 points)
4. Your hamper is full and you've piled more dirty laundry on top of it. The thing smells like Johnny Appleseed's feet after a 20 mile stretch of his frontier wanderings. (1 point)
When you have completed the quiz, you add your points up to get your clutter quotient. They compare decluttering your home to dieting. How hard it is to get started and to keep going. There are helpful hints and cute quotes throughout the book. One of my favorites was from Miss Piggy:"Always use one of the new-and far more reliable-elastic measuring tapes to check on your waistline."
This area is usually very cluttered!
After guiding you through a few chapters on how to begin, hints on how to avoid purchasing more clutter, and exposing clutter triggers, you begin on room to room hints. One of the most important areas to declutter is your entryway as that is what every individual who visits your house sees first. This chapter even includes how to choose the proper vacuum.
For the living room, along with cleaning things out, they have tips to create a unique armoire and something I am going to try, how to customize utility shelving. The kitchen is the next room covered. Realize this book is not just declutter, it includes how to store things better. A hint here:"When in doubt, throw it out. Never check food for spoilage by tasting it. Even a small quantity of tainted food can make you sick."
Chapter 7 is all about your dining room. There are sections on cleaning and storing your silverware, 5 ways to create dining room storage, etc.
The bedroom is a huge area in my home that need decluttered. We have a tendency to place items in there to keep them out of the way, and then the bedroom becomes cluttered. Or we return an item to someone's room and we just set it down in the first empty spot. Next thing you know, the bedroom is a mess. A closet purge-restrict what gets stored there. One idea is to host a decluttering party. Have snacks and let your friends help you decide which clothing to keep and which ones to get rid of.
After cleaning the bedroom, they cover the Bathroom, Kid Clutter, Home Office, Cyber Clutter, Laundry Room, Reclaiming the Attic, Basement and Garage, and the Yard. Then, not only have they helped you clean up and organize your home, they tell you how to dispose of all the clutter. The last chapter is all about keeping it in the proper perspective. You will have ups and downs, victories and losses. Just keep going, don't become discouraged and quit.
If any of my neighbors have been thinking about doing a thorough house cleaning, this just might be the book to get you going. 10,001 Ways to Declutter your Home on a Small Budget has helped encourage me to do a deep cleaning.
You can find this book through Skyhorse Publishing. Check it out here.
One neighbor will receive their own copy of this great book.
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Disclosure: I received no monetary compensation for this post. I received a 10,001 Ways to Declutter Your Home on a Small Budget for this review. All quotes are taken from the Skyhorse Publishing website, the book itself or email. All thoughts and opinions are mine.