Since I returned to work after my first son was born (almost 13 years ago), I’ve taken time off over the Christmas holidays. To fill in my days (and to make the year ahead easier), I undertake a yearly overhaul of many of the systems in our home. This year has been just the same as the 12 before it. Here’s a snapshot of what I do in the overhaul.
Many of my decluttering workshop attendees have trouble keeping up with the rate at which the kids grow! If you don’t have a regular time to go through the kids clothes, I highly recommend it.
I’ve been lucky to have many hand-me-downs for my boys, so in a nutshell, it’s a straight swap of one size for another. Everything from the small size goes (even it if still fits) and the new size comes in.
Changeover in this way means there is no umming an arhing about sentimental items. I take a few photos of special items and they the clothes are divided up to go to the op-shop or cousins.
But if you don’t have hand-me-down items, here’s the process I use:
– pile of folded clothes I know will not fit.
– pile of clothes I’m not sure about
– pile of folded clothes that are the correct size.
– sort through the “unsure” pile with my son to decide what fits (and whether the fickle teenager will wear it).
The drawers are always much easier to close once I have been through this process.
Toy table overhaul.
Although my boys (almost 13 and 9) don’t use a lot of toys, they still love their craft. So technically it’s a craft table.
I go through each item on top of the table and a find a permanent home in a tub or returned it to the area of the house it lives.
I go through each item in the tubs under the table, and bundled it up for the op shop if they they are no longer using it.
PS. I should have involved the kids in this process, but I just couldn’t be bothered when I did the overhaul recently as I just wanted to get it done quickly.
Now they have plenty of space on top of the table to be crafty.
This year I bought a new desk on Facebook Marketplace so I rearranged my whole workspace, but generally, this is the process:
– take everything off the desk
– sort into like items (stationery, books, decorative items etc)
– clean the desk
– put items that you use regularly in easy to reach place
A freshly organised workspace is energising, inspiring and productive – go on, give it a go and see the results for yourself.
For a more indepth outline on this process check out 10 key steps to declutter your workspaces
No one wants to spend time looking for things when they are trying to prepare meals at the end of a work day. Make time to look through utensils and small appliances in the kitchen.
In the above pic I moved some items I don’t use often to the pantry, updated my veggie steamer (brand new, $5 from the op shop) and found a home for the nutribullet cups and accessories so they are not always out on the bench.
Check through all cupboards and drawers in this way.
This overhaul returns everything to their permanent homes and declutters items that are not used allowing you to find things quickly and easily.
Another job I do at the same time each year is to go through the boys’ school/artwork they have bought home during the year.
I only keep what fits into a plastic folder (see second pic).
Firstly I sort it into piles:
– Pile of folders and notebooks to be reused
– Items to be photographed then recycled
– Pile of unsure (which I then go through with my Sons to decide what to keep)
– Pile of keep
– Special pieces to keep.
It is so good to get this job done each year. If the kids ask for their school photos or school yearbook from a particular year, you know exactly where they are.
See this blog for details on how to manage the influx during the year https://spaceandtime.com.au/kids-school-work/
Put time aside in the diary to tackle a few of these tasks, but if you find you don’t have the time (or you’re just not interested), I’d be happy to come work with you to get the jobs done. It’s such a great feeling to review the items you have and reset your systems to support you for the year ahead. Call me on 0413 447 562 for a 20 minute obligation free chat, or you can book me here.
Julie Cliff, Melbourne Professional Organiser at Space and Time specialises in home management systems for professional, working Mums. Mums that are having trouble keeping up with work, the kids’ school and after school commitments, household chores and, consequently, they are feeling exhausted, stressed and overwhelmed. Sound familiar? Julie would love to hear from you – firstname.lastname@example.org