Saturday, May 12, 2007

Spring cleaning

Spring cleaning encompasses much more than simply giving the interior of one’s home a thorough cleaning, so much more in fact - books have been written on the subject with incredibly detailed voluminous amounts of pages, all encompassing specific how to directions. Shelves fill our local bookstores; surely you must own a few yourselves?

As I’ve been combing and scouring the interior of our home, I feel as though I’ve been able to accomplish much this past week to keep me occupied sufficiently, when able during my daily agendas.

All four younger children living at home spent time with me individually, browsing bedroom dresser drawers, closets and other areas of the home where clothing or footwear reside. Clothing bordering anything small on bodies were removed, washed and placed into donation piles. It’s amazing how high the piles were over the course of the day's efforts, high enough to fill up two very large green plastic garbage bags for donations to our local St. Vincent de Paul thrift store.

The children have grown immensely since moving east, every one of them has shot up in height, and their feet have outgrown much of their winter footwear, leaving us with a list of purchase items for the future. Seasonal items were packed away in the large rubber bins I store in the storage area, or thick woolens and winter coats place onto hangers inside this same closet area.

It's interesting to note since moving here the bins have lowered from eight to four, emptying the remains of those saved clothing bin items from older sibling's hand me downs to their younger siblings. It’s very refreshing to provide almost a completely new wardrobe to a child for free, those removed from the storage bins, now happily residing in their dresser drawers after a good washing. One son is so excited with his new clothing, and the two striped shirts are his commanded “pirate” shirts, giving active duty to an ever-active imagination.

Everything in its place.

The storage closet in our enormous guest bedroom suite is filled with essentials like sleeping bags, and suitcases so they’re at hand any given time we may need them. I found after our last trip to the west, everyone brought their newly acquired suitcases to the storage area, plopping them wherever they wished, creating a bit of unorganized chaos in need of proper control.

The temperature in the area is much more acceptable for these types of items, not prone to moist conditions to create mold or mildew on the fabrics or canvas exteriors. Shelf by shelf I emptied the contents to the floor, and every item was sorted and eventually replaced with a label adhered to the front center of each shelf for future reference so all remains as organized later as it is now. My handy dandy label creator machine has come in handy for many areas in our home, a great purchase.

Labeling everything has become second nature.

Speaking of that great investment, the label machine has been wonderful for all the filing in the filing cabinets we recently updated, as well as the computer desk with active files I want at hand on the main floor of the house. I’ve found with a very organized system in place, it’s a breeze to file things as they enter the home in their proper places.

Filing complete!

Labels look lovely!

Don't you just love colored file folders to grab at a moment's notice? The bottom drawer contains a few files and all the extra file folders at our fingertips for more filing needs down the road.

Gone are the days with the “To File” tray filled to the brim and bribing a young one to complete the filing detail to empty it. Here is a glimpse of the hard work we rolled up our sleeves for lasting several long days to get it this way. As a result of the duties of gathering important data and creating a file system of use to us for future references, we were able to allocate all current files into the filing cabinet, and the drawer in the computer desk on the main floor.

My desk drawer has all my own current file system in place.

All else, things such as older files no longer required to keep by law, old warranties from previous homes, children’s curricula items no longer of use, all were gathered and tossed into either a garbage bag for the roadside pickup, or more important items of “identity” specifics were packed into a large moving box and will accompany us to the fire pit for future evening fires outdoors as fire starters. I used to toss these sorts of items into our wood burning fireplace for disposal, as one can never be too cautious with their identity. One daughter has her purse stolen and the things she had to go through were incredible to retain her personal identity, having to prove “who” she was when traveling over the border. Another daughter had her husband’s VISA credit card billings filled with fraud, and one son’s bank account was compromised with someone stealing his banking card information upon a purchase somewhere and attempting to clear his bank account when a newlywed. It’s amazing how we are affected once something such as this highly important topic is compromised, usually not from our own doing, so burn baby burn! Smile

Words of advice are in full view;

"Be Strong and Courageous"

Stay tuned for more on spring cleaning