The Home Maintenance Challenge - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 12:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've started this as a declutter and cleaning challenge on another board I frequent, and posted it on my blog. I thought the mamas here might enjoy a bit of motivation to get more done at your house! Each week I can post the challenges, if people are interested, and there will be four smaller challenges and two bigger challenges in one area of your home. The inventory part is for anyone wanting to keep track of what they are keeping for insurance purposes or as a motivating tool to keep less. Let me know what you think!

Each Week:
• Before each decluttering project, without looking, sit down and write down what is SUPPOSED to be in that drawer/cabinet/shelf.
• Add items that you’re keeping and new things you’ve bought to your inventory
• Get rid of at least one box of STUFF (toss, recycle, or donate) - this could be your seven things if you do that
• Post before and after pictures!

Week 3: Closet – Oct. 15-21
4 Small Challenges
1. Go through your jewelry box. Get rid of what no longer appeals to you or no longer goes with your clothes and organize what is left.
2. Clean the doorknobs, switchplates and outlets throughout your home.
3. Round up errant shoes. Return to proper shoe resting place.
4. Clean out your purse. Only put back what you really need to carry around with you.

Just One Big Challenges
1. Go through your closet and try everything on. Toss or donate anything that isn't flattering, is stained, torn, too short, too baggy, or just unappealing. Re-hang all of your clothes (the ones you actually wear!) on matching hangers FACING BACKWARD. Take inventory of the gaps in your wardrobe. Admire your clean, organized, well fitting clothes. (As you use and wash your clothes, replace them facing forward. At the end of 6 months, you’ll be able to see what you haven’t touched because it won’t be facing forward; then you can reevaluate whether that item should remain in your closet.)
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#2 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 12:19 AM
 
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Sounds interesting! I think I'll give it a shot.
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#3 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 01:44 AM
 
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really love some of these ideas!
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#4 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 10:05 AM
 
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we are moving in two days.... so won`t be doing the challenges this go around... but LOVE the idea. this is my first *house* so I need to get a system going to keep track of things... and not get cluttered... etc..
Kathryn
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#5 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 01:58 PM
 
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AWESOME IDEAS! Thanks mama!!!!

Amanda, wife to Ed mama to Logan, Phoenix, Indigo and snuggle bunny EZRA RAIN has arrived
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#6 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 02:16 PM
 
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I love the list of whats supose to be there. I think I will try it on our phone book, note pad, pencil drawer. I just noticed this morning it is busting full of misc. stuff.

Just had to share that my DH is an electrician and is always coming home with extra random stuff in his pockets. Usually I just set an empty coffe container for him to dump everything into. But I realized how unattractive that is and I would much rather look at something pretty. So I am getting old glass canning jars, probably 4, and sticking them in the laundry room so before I do laundry I can sort out wire nuts and so on. Just trying to decide if I want to jars on the counter where it can look cluttered and harder to dust or up on a shelf above the washer. I really love a blank counter without stuff on it so I can actually use it.
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#7 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 04:02 PM
 
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I will add those things to my to-do list for the week

~Rebecca~
mama to a sweet girl , & 4 silly boys

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#8 of 38 Old 10-16-2006, 11:23 PM
 
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I've started on my closet and it's a ton of stuff in there i don't wear any more that is to small, to old, ect... talk about a lot of stuff to take to good will this weekend! LOL now if only i could get dh to do the same thing i think i'll just start taking things i haven't seen him wear in the past 6 months or so!!! I've never met a man that had so many clothes!!
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#9 of 38 Old 10-17-2006, 01:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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moms3kids, my husband has more clothes than me. It's funny because he basically wears "his uniform" every day - khaki shorts, blue T-shirt. But he has a closet full of nice, dress up clothes. I've gotten him to pare down his tie collection to two, since he's worn one ONCE in the past year! He went through his belts, too. I'm pushing this week for a more agressive attack on dress up shirts.

So far, I've rounded up my shoes and put them in the shoe cabinet. Just that makes a difference in our entry way.
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#10 of 38 Old 10-17-2006, 01:37 AM
 
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:

Blissful Mama to DD-(5), DS-(6) and someone new due in November!
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#11 of 38 Old 10-17-2006, 01:51 AM
 
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I totall needed to read this thread today! My house needs to be decluttered so bad. I am all for the challenges, bring it on mama!
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#12 of 38 Old 10-17-2006, 10:48 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momaste View Post
moms3kids, my husband has more clothes than me. It's funny because he basically wears "his uniform" every day - khaki shorts, blue T-shirt. But he has a closet full of nice, dress up clothes.
I think our husbands must be related. Not only does he have more dress clothes, he has the six-drawer dresser and I have the four-drawer one. And when all the clothes are clean I can hardly close his up. Fortunately, that never happens.

I love the idea of writing down what's supposed to be in the storage area, by the way.
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#13 of 38 Old 10-19-2006, 02:05 PM
 
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: Sounds like a great idea, please keep updating week by week.

Thanks, Amanda
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#14 of 38 Old 10-19-2006, 02:21 PM
 
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I love the system for weeding out clothes not worn! Very clever
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#15 of 38 Old 10-21-2006, 12:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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How is everyone doing? Sunday is the start of a new challenge. Have you gotten through this week's?

I have to dust the alarm clock and go through DH's clothes in the closet tomorrow. Otherwise, I'm good to go.
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#16 of 38 Old 10-21-2006, 09:51 AM
 
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I've got a few more shoes to round up, and to wipe down the upstairs knobs and plates, but as soon as the rest of the family is up, I should be able to do all that in a jiffy. Then I'm off to goodwill to drop off a carload...

And I can't believe I'm actually excited to see our challenges for Sunday!!! Any chance you'd ever post them early? I try to get more done on Sat then Sun...

Either way, Thanks for doing this! Amanda
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#17 of 38 Old 10-21-2006, 10:12 PM
 
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Excellent---I'm going to start now--on last weeks.
This seems do-able to me.
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#18 of 38 Old 10-22-2006, 02:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Bathroom Week
4 Small Challenges
1. Windex all the mirrors in your home
2. Clean your scale.
3. Toss the shower curtain and bath mats into the washer.
4. Clean the soap dish and toothbrush holder. Replace your toothbrush if you haven’t done so in 3 months or more.

2 Big Challenges
1. Go through your products, makeup, medicine cabinet and first aid kit, tossing anything that is expired or that you don’t use. Wipe out the cabinet and replace items neatly, making a note of what needs replaced.
2. Do a thorough bathroom cleaning. Scour the sink, scrub the tub, and clean the toilet front to back, inside and out. If you still have energy, mop.
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#19 of 38 Old 10-23-2006, 09:40 PM
 
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Hurray! I'm one step ahead on the big challenges! I cleaned out all my cabinets and make up/creams etc. I tossed some and gave some away. It has however been awhile since wearing some of this make up and the other night I accidently put lip gloss on my eyelids Needless to say I couldn't figure out why it was so greasy until this AM when I looked at it and read the label "lip gloss".
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#20 of 38 Old 10-23-2006, 11:24 PM
 
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oh well i've done all but one step of the tasks, i just delcuttered/ deep cleaned my bathroom about 1.5 weeks ago, but will give it a little touch up, we even bought all new tooth brushes! LOL
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#21 of 38 Old 10-23-2006, 11:40 PM
 
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Wow, great ideas. I'll add these to my to-do list! Keep them coming.
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#22 of 38 Old 10-24-2006, 02:03 AM
 
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I cleaned out my closet and my dds' closet. I need to do ds's.

Now if only my dh would clean out his. He is another one of the husbands with too much! He has more clothing than anyone in the house, stuff that has the tags on it he bought years ago. He wears uniforms 5 days a week, no idea why he has so much clothing!
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#23 of 38 Old 10-24-2006, 10:05 AM
 
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I did our medicine cabinets last night, and hung quotes I love on the boring inside door to make me smile in the morning. Now all thats left is the mirrors around the house, (dh even did the shower/tub for me yesterday, which he usually does, just not always as soon as I'd like!)
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#24 of 38 Old 10-26-2006, 11:52 AM
 
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Although I'm not keeping up with this as well as I'd like, I just wanted to check in and say that this is sooooo helpful for me. The weekly aspect of the challenge fits my schedule so much better than systems that have daily tasks (like flylady), and the writing down of the contents of the areas you're decluttering has been downright revelatory. One thing I've been doing that others may or may not find helpful is putting the date of the decluttering on the list of what goes in the cupboard, etc. I've been putting the lists on 3x5 cards and taping them inside the doors. This way I can check the last time I cleaned stuff out. At least in theory.
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#25 of 38 Old 10-26-2006, 08:39 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CandyApple View Post
I did our medicine cabinets last night, and hung quotes I love on the boring inside door to make me smile in the morning. ...
I LOVE that idea of the quotes! Too bad we do not have medicine cabs, only mirrors on the wall.

subbing to this thread, I need a good kick in the butt to get moving on cleaning out my house. Somehow the kids get the better of me and things are really getting out of hand...it's embarrassing now to have anyone over.
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#26 of 38 Old 10-27-2006, 12:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We're putting in a medicine cabinet with our bathroom redo. I think I'll put quotes inside the door! Nice idea!

I went through my products and reduced by about 1/4. I did it about a month back and got rid of half, though, so another 1/4 feels pretty drastic! Also, I moved my lipsticks from their tubes into unused pill boxes, which take a lot less space in the cabinet.
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#27 of 38 Old 10-29-2006, 02:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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New Week, New Challenge!

Week 5: Utility – Oct. 29-Nov. 4
4 Small Challenges
1. Windex all the mirrors in your house.
2. Test loose batteries and recycle those that don't work. Give the ones that work a home and put new batteries there when they come into the house.
3. Check the smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector batteries and replace as needed. Install a carbon monoxide detector if you don't already have one.
4. Dust light fixtures (including light bulbs), ceiling fans, air vents, etc. Vacuum the floor.

2 Big Challenges
1. Clean your car, including the glove box, under the seats, and the trunk. Dust the dashboard, Windex the windshield, and vacuum the upholstery.
2. Organize your sporting equipment. Toss or donate what you no longer use. Clean what you're keeping and give it proper storage.
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#28 of 38 Old 10-30-2006, 12:12 PM
 
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Clean your car, including the glove box, under the seats, and the trunk. Dust the dashboard, Windex the windshield, and vacuum the upholstery.
Oof. This hits me where it hurts. Last week I was preening about how decluttered my bathroom areas were before I even decluttered, and then I got in the car and thought, "urg. this is bad."
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#29 of 38 Old 10-30-2006, 06:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, I took a few "after" bathroom pictures. I didn't take any before. It wasn't nearly so neat!!
Shelf above the toilet

The Counter
(We're replacing our bathroom, so there is no mirror above the sink, and below the sink on either side are the slate tiles that will be the floor and shower surround. We'll be getting a new-to-us vanity since this one is REALLY short.)
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#30 of 38 Old 10-30-2006, 06:36 PM
 
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Looks great -- Thanks for sharing. I'll try to take a few soon and post.

So far this week, I've gotten the car done (its was warm enough to play outside yesterday), but am dreading the sports equipment. Was amazed how quickly the light fixtures and fans went, its something I avoid, but it was easier than I thought.

Thanks so much for doing this, its helping me stay sane this fall...
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