When March 1st hits us we suddenly realize it’s time to get ready for spring, even if spring here in Canada means those two warm weeks before summer. Here at the Messengers International, we are big fans of donating our goods to people who could make good use of them. Just one of many reasons to start your spring cleaning.
If you’re anything like me, you like to clear out all of your winter blues by physically decluttering your space and starting spring (or mid-winter as it seems) with a nice organized space.
Here are some ideas to get your decluttering started and to help organize all your belongings…
The first step to getting rid of clutter is sorting. Sort everything by order of usefulness and sentimental value. A great rule to follow would be, anything you haven’t used in the past two years, get rid of it. And for sentimental pieces, is this something that you’d like passed down to the next generation? If it is then of course you would keep it.
So back to sorting…
The first step will be to create three piles. Pile 1: Keep. Pile 2: Not sure. Pile 3: Donate. Once you’ve got enough in your pile 3 you can get that pile sent off to the charity of your choice. The Canadian Diabetes Society also makes house calls so you can get it all packed up, leave it on your doorstep and they will collect it. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
The second step would be to sub-sort your not sure pile. From those items, we can then make two more separate piles of either yes (keep) or no (donate). Ask yourself, will you use this next winter? would I miss this sweater if it wasn’t in my closet? Will someone else make more use of this than I will? If you answered no, no and yes – then that item can go in the donation pile.
Once your donations are sorted and delivered to the charity of your choice – it’s time to organize all the stuff you’ve decided to keep, and lets face it, it’s probably still a huge pile of stuff. That’s why organization is key.
One of my favourite tools for keeping odds and ends organized are cute storage boxes. They can be purchased at any dollar store, and they normally have large and small sizes. The great thing about these is that they are nice to look at (as opposed to the usual cardboard box) and you can colour coordinate them with your furniture if you choose to leave them exposed.
For those smaller knick knacks, throw them (sorted by type) into corresponding boxes. For instance, one box for documents, one box for miscellaneous items, one box for screws and bolts, one box for office supplies, etc. etc. You can purchase shelves at any hardware store and store your knick knack boxes on them and they don’t look too shabby, or if you want to stick them in a cupboard or closet, that’s okay too.
Continuing with organization, it’s time to tackle the larger items (ie. clothes, shoes, furniture, pillows, blankets, seasonal decorations, etc etc)
When it comes to your clothes and accessories – for such items that you don’t wear all year long (like winter clothes) vacuum seal bags are the way to go. You can fit so much more into a vacuum seal storage bag than you can into a garbage bag. Also, under the bed storage bags are great for items like shoes or decorations that are bulkier and won’t vacuum seal that well.
For any other items that don’t fit into any category or can’t be easily vacuum sealed and tucked away, you can either look at them again and decide if you really truly need them, or you can make your own DIY organizers. Check out Buzzfeed’s 50 clever DIY hacks for organization for some great ideas on DIY organization for everything you can think of: http://www.buzzfeed.com/pippa/50-clever-diy-ways-to-organize-your-entire-life-5ocb#.egpwzKAYq
And now that you’re all organized and you’ve donated your used items to a great charity, it’s time to just sit back and wait for spring to arrive…whenever that may be..
By Nerissa Mohamed