Friday, September 25, 2009

Fall Cleaning/the bedrooms/other tips for moving into fall

Hello, everyone:

We're moving into fall. For your book of days, here are some ideas:

1) Take photos of your yard each week through the fall season and paste in your book. Or, take one a month for the next three months.
2) Jot down sights and smells of fall that delight you.
3) Write about how it feels to have accomplished a fall project.
4) Record anything sweet, cute, funny, or inspiring that your husband and children say.

For your home economics book, here's some ideas:

Continue to work out your plan for the fall. Jot down some fall recipes. Study what produce is available in your area during the autumn and make a menu plan that incorporates those foods.

The holidays are coming. Inventory your gift wrapping supplies. Do you have holiday papers? Do you need tape, labels, mailing paper, boxes, gift bags, ribbon, gift tags, etc.? Now's a great time to make sure that your holiday gift wrapping supplies are in order. Later on, when the holidays are nearer, bring out the materials you have put together this week and set up a holiday gift wrapping station. Be sure it's out of reach of little hands and pet. (I put my supplies in the corner of our bonus room.) Visit the dollar store for inexpensive wrapping supplies. Also, if you bought holiday papers or ribbons at an after-Christmas sale last year, make sure you know where you stored them!! Sometimes, Christmas items bought at after-Christmas sales don't make it into your regular Christmas storage, especially if you buy them after you have already cleaned up all of your holiday stuff.

Don't forget about Thanksgiving cards or Christmas cards if you use them.

If you plan to write a Christmas letter, start thinking of ideas.

The earlier you can be prepared, the smoother the holiday season will be. Fall is a busy, busy time for most keepers at home, so do the best you can with the time you have.

Are you still doing your fall cleaning? Now's a great time to reorganize and thoroughly clean your bedrooms.

Let's start with the master bedroom. This is either the room you share with your beloved spouse or the room where you sleep. A cluttered bedroom isn't conducive to either rest or romance. Yet, so often, we let the master bedroom become the catchall room. We've talked about that before, but now that we're moving into fall, it's time to take another look at this important room.

Here is a sample deep-cleaning plan for the master bedroom. You can either take a couple of intense days to do this or you can break it down into steps and spread those steps over a longer period of time. You can also adapt it to your needs. Everyone will have her own unique priorities for the bedroom.

1) Pick up any items that are out of place. Check the dresser, the floor, the nightstands, the bed, under the bed, etc. Throw away things that you do not use anymore. Throw away those little bits of trash that seem to collect on the floor of a bedroom and in little nooks. Put things that you want to use, but that either do not belong in the bedroom or that you want to move to another location in a box. Now's not the time to run all over the house to put those things away; you can do it when you are finished with the room. Put away clean clothes; wash any dirty items you may have found.
2) Dust down the ceiling, walls, corners, and baseboards of the room. If you have a ceiling fan in your room, dust that as well.
3) Rotate and/or flip your mattress so that it will wear evenly and not just in certain spots. This will prolong the life of your mattress. Vacuum your mattress. Wash all the bedding while you have everything off. If you haven't already switched to fall bedding, do that. For some of us, that simply means adding one extra blanket -- even a thin one. For those who live on cold climes, you may have a completely different set of bedding for fall than you do for winter.
4) Take down curtains or drapes and clean them or else vacuum them in place.
5) Dust all surfaces, furniture, etc. Polish furniture if desired. Repair any knicks or spots on furniture. Wash and iron and replace dresser scarves, etc.
6) Dust and clean knickknacks.
7) Make a note to turn the master bedroom clocks when the daylight savings time deadline arrives.
8) Clean the flooring in your bedroom according to what type it is. (hardwood, carpet, etc.)
9) Go through your lingerie. Toss out anything that doesn't look fresh anymore. Replace what you need to replace. Think ahead to cool weather. Do you need tights? Warm undergarments? A pretty nightie in a beautiful fall color?
10) Check hats, gloves, etc. If you store your coats in your closet, see if they need cleaning or any repair.
11) Do you wear jewelry? If you do, this is a good time to inventory it. Toss out or give away anything you don't wear anymore. Clean items that need cleaning. Does your wedding ring or engagement ring need maintenance? If so, take it in. Do you need to have any necklaces restrung? Do you need to untangle chains, get rid of that odd earring that no longer has a mate, etc.? Tip: Old costume jewelry can be a fun thing for your daughters to play with as is age appropriate.
12) We already talked about changing your wardrobe for fall. For those of us who are still in hot weather, that might mean simply putting away our most summery things right now. A good many people in the U.S. live in areas where three-season clothing can be worn almost year round. Some people like to dress in fall colors in the autumn. Others prefer to wear the colors that look best on them or are their favorites year round. It is your choice.
13) Polish fall shoes and handbags.
14) If you need to alter or mend autumn/winter clothing, now is a good time to do it or have it done. Do it before cold weather sets in! You may also want to have this chore out of the way before the holidays come, as well.
15) Do you want to paint your bedroom? Do you want to update it in any way? Make a list of things you'd like to do for your master bedroom and work it into your budget and into your calendar. It's probably best to do small things right now, as you might not want to be in the middle of a big painting job when the holidays roll around.
16) Do you have a master bathroom attached to your bedroom? Inventory towels and other needs. Add what you need. Throw away anything you don't want. Clean out all of the drawers and cabinets in your bathroom.
17) Polish or paint cabinets to freshen them, if you like.
18) Give your bathroom a thorough cleaning.
19) If you have bathroom curtains, clean them.
20) Replace shower curtain liner if appropriate.
21) Does your master shower or bath need re-caulking?
22) Clean bath mats
23) Clean tile. Do you need to re-grout the tile or clean the grout?
24) After cleaning thoroughly, polish translucent shower doors with something like Turtle Wax. This will prevent soapy build-up and make them easier to clean.
25) Clean and polish baseboards.
26) Do you have plants in bed or bathroom? Do they need re-potting?
27) Clean brushes, combs, hair tools, hair accessories

If you need to use your master bedroom for a double purpose, find creative ways to organize so that the purpose of your bedroom -- rest, relaxation, and, if you are married, romance -- is still the focus. Many people can't find any office or sewing or exercise space anywhere but in their master bedroom. If this is the case for you, do the best you can to keep your office/sewing materials neat so that they don't add clutter to the bedroom. Perhaps, you could make a screen or a curtain of some kind to partition off the area of your bedroom used for another purpose.

Follow the same cleaning method above for the other bedrooms in your home. Assign chores to children who are old enough to participate in this fall cleaning/re-organization.
If children have some ideas for creatively making their room their own, work with them to carry their ideas out as is appropriate for your budget and time.

If you are lucky enough to have a guest bedroom, be sure to include items that your guests will need. Also put out some interesting reading material or even pretty coffee-table style books. Provide a few sheets of stationary and some envelopes, as well as a pen. Make sure there is some space in a closet for hanging clothing and in a drawer for placing folded clothing.

Many of us use our guest rooms for a double purpose. It is probably better to do this with a guest room than your master bedroom, if at all possible. Again, be creative with storage ideas so that the room has a restful, rather than busy or cluttered, feeling.

Here are a few videos that give tips and ideas for bedrooms. Please note that just because I have put the video on here doesn't mean that I necessarily endorse everything in the video. These do, however, give some tips which you can use according to your discretion.

How to organize clothing drawers, especially when you share space with your husband.

How to organize kid's room:

How to fold hoodies so you can put them in drawers:

How to fold socks so that they fit well in drawers:

Woman who organized her closet to look like a boutique:

Ideas for organizing accessories:

Idea for a teenaged girl's room:

Another idea for a teenaged girl's room:

How to fold towels for bathroom:

Another method of folding towels:

How to fold your bedsheets:

How to make a bed:

How to turn a mattress:

How to put on a heavy blanket:

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