Getting our homes organized won't happen overnight. It's essential that we set aside time for straightening up... or it will never happen. But fear not: we're interviewing the best cleaning experts and bloggers to get their take on where to begin in order to get a fresh start in your house.
If the kitchen is the heart of the home, that makes the pantry a pretty vital part, right? Toni Hammersley, "A Bowl Full Of Lemons" blogger, shares pantry organizing tips in her Home Organization 101 series, a 14-week program that walks you through how to get every nook and cranny in tip-top shape. She says that the key to getting this area in gear is categorizing.
"Don't just throw everything onto the shelves together," she told us. She suggests buying inexpensive bins or baskets and labeling them by their contents so everyone in your home knows where things can be found. Hammersley uses adorable chalkboard labels so she can change them up, and has containers for categories like: breakfast, pasta, baking, sides and snacks.
To keep this area crumb-free, Hammersley completely cleans it seasonally, pulling everything out, wiping down the shelves and mopping the floors. She then gets rid of anything that has expired, and donates any non-perishables that she doesn't plan on using to a local soup kitchen. She also keeps a clipboard with the space's entire inventory on the wall so she knows at a glance what she's running low on.
No pantry in your home? Get creative. Hammersley told us she used an extra coat closet in her first home as a makeshift spot for dry goods. And she reminds us not to forget walls and doors as potential storage space if your home doesn't have shelves to spare.
Illustration by Raydene Salinas/ HP
Another area that stresses out Hammersley's readers? The garage. "This area is particularly overwhelming to people because they have to see it every time they come and go," she told us. So get to it!
If you're worried you might be overworking yourself, click through our slideshow to see 8 surprising stress symptoms.
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