DIY Spring Cleaning (Focus)

By Liberty Starkweather Smith


Ahhhh…it’s spring time. The grass is greener, the flowers are popping up, and in our case, our beloved dog is tracking in all sorts of mud. Mud that we thankfully haven’t seen since fall.

On my quest to rid the house of this mud, I realized that it was also this ambiguous time of year to “spring clean”. My mother never called it “spring cleaning”, or maybe she did and would be upset that I didn’t remember this crusade happening in spring of every year.

In any case, I know that spring started back on March 20th, but before it is Summer, I am going to do a valiant effort to do some “spring cleaning”. If many of you are like me, and a tad bit behind schedule, you understand the dilemma that I am in.

So, where do I start?

As I’m sitting here thinking about where to begin with this whole “spring cleaning” that needs to be done around the house, I have to remind myself of how I accomplish thing easiest. I am a task driven person. If someone gives me a task or I make myself a task, it will get accomplished. This is where lists come into play.

First and foremost, I am a list maker. I make lists on paper, wipe boards, on the computer, on my phone. A list is a great way to mark daily achievements. As you get things accomplished you simply take it off the list. In fact, I’ve been known to write on my list “make a new list “and cross that off after I’ve made a new list. Yes, it’s intense.

Here is a shortened version of things we need to accomplish around the house this next week:

Curtain rod for front windows Set up shelves in basement Sort items in the middle of the basement into boxes Find wedding items for Ryan’s reception (basement) Clean/organize hall closet Get recycling ready Laundry (at least 3-4 loads)

As you read my list, you will notice that there are only a few of these items that actually involve cleaning. .. So how does this tie into a DIY spring cleaning? I’m feeling confident that this action warrants a name change. I will call it spring organizing. Or, spring focus. Yes, I like that!

DIY spring focus is more about getting yourself organized than trying to find a new chemical free cleaner on pinterest. (Yes, I could have filled this post with wonderful new cleaning tricks, but I will save that for another time.)

So as we embark on this spring focus I encourage you and encourage myself to keep these things in mind:

Get rid of the stuff you don’t need. Put it in a yard sale, donate it to a local organization. If it is stressing you out, and keeping you from being focused, get rid of it.

Put your stuff in the right place. Don’t put items in a tub or box that don’t belong together. Craft stuff goes with craft stuff. Pictures with pictures. Holiday with holiday. It takes more time upfront, but you will be happier with your efforts in the long run.

Take your time. Greatness doesn’t happen overnight. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get it all done in one Saturday.

Don’t do it alone. Grab the kids, your husband, in-law, make it a family affair! When you are working with each other towards a common goal, it is great bonding time.

If you are on top of your game, and have already cleaned your house, washed your walls, and have a specific spot for everything you own, then I commend you. If you are bored, you are welcome to come over and help me. I have great snacks and am willing to open a bottle of wine.

For the rest of us, happy spring focus!