Have you ever had disorganization hamper your frugality? It happens to me sometimes–I’ll think we’re out of mayonnaise, and I don’t see any in the pantry, so I’ll buy one at regular price (ack!) just to find out we had several hidden away. Not so frugal. It can happen with food, toiletries, clothes, anything in your home. If you’re feeling the itch to start your Spring Cleaning, think about doing some basic organizing first. The kids helped me with the pantry yesterday. Sorry I didn’t take a before picture, but trust me–it wasn’t pretty.
I’ve come up with three steps that make organizing manageable to me. They work on something as small as a junk drawer and as big as a twin sisters’ closet:
1) Take everything out. This was the step where the toddlers were eager to help. They loved toting everything out to the living room.
2) Sort like with like and with a place in mind. To sort like with like, we put the cans together, the cereals together, the cookbooks together, and the baking items together. Then they went their own way and my 5-year-old helped me sort with a place in mind; I went through each item and assigned it a place–back into the pantry, somewhere else, the giveaway bag, or the trash. My son ran the “somewhere else” items to their new home downstairs while I did step 3.
3) Put the items back in place. I was able to accomplish several goals. I made my baking supplies more accessible, which had been frustrating me as I’ve been baking more frequently. I also moved the cereals and snacks to within my son’s reach so he could be more independent in serving himself. I even ended up with a lot of extra space! Finally, and it’s a long-term goal, by having my kids help with projects like these, they are learning the benefits of having less clutter and keeping things manageable. My son was thrilled when we found an apple juice hiding in the back.
What is a small space that you need to organize in your home? Pick a drawer, a cabinet, or a closet and give it a try. I’ll meet you back here next Tuesday with another example and an organizer giveaway!