We did it! Our last week of the Spring Clean-Up Challenge! Now if spring would just get the memo that it needs to show up soon, that’d be great. This week is all about the outside of your house. Clean up the gardens, garage and windows. Really anything outside. We have an outside bench bin that I will be cleaning out, along with setting up our patio furniture. I’m also going to attempt to have the husband clean the grill!
Just a refresher to share everything we have accomplished and don’t forget to click the link to get the free Weekly-Clean-Up-Challenge.pdf printable. Follow along on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for motivation throughout the week!! Week one was all about the closets and drawers! Week two was getting our kitchen and pantry spotless. Week three was the start of our deep cleaning, where we cleaned the main living areas. Week four go your deep cleaning the bathrooms and linen closet. Week five was getting the bedrooms clean and organized. Week six was getting the laundry room, filters and any other area of the inside of your house clean and organized for spring. Each week we are going to be tackling one area of the house that needs a spring refresher, making spring cleaning not as daunting as it can appear.
Cleaning and organizing the outside of your home could include:
- Wash all windows
- Wash all doors
- Clean out gutters
- Clean out garden area
- Clean up yard from winter debris
- Get oil changed in car
- Get car wash
- Vacuum inside of your car
- Organize the inside of your car
- Check tire pressure
- Empty gas from snow blower
- Get lawn mower serviced
- Clean out garage
- Wash all outside toys
- Hook up hoses
- Set up patio furniture
- Clean and service grill
This is one of the worst tasks to do because we have so many windows. Ben has tried pretty much every product for cleaning windows that is or has been on the market. Some of the products totally claim to do a great job, but they are either really tough to assemble or fall apart if you have to extend it to reach the top windows.
The best way we found to wash the outside of the windows was to use a giant car wash brush like the Extend-A-Flo Auto Brush from Home Depot. Attach the brush to your hose and wash the windows using water. To get the windows streak-free, follow the wash with a squeegee, going from left to right, top to bottom. It may seem time consuming, but you will have nice, shiny windows to let in the spring sunshine through those clean windows!
The top windows of our house can be opened and cleaned from the inside. It’s a nice feature, but I have yet to do that. We just clean the windows from the outside using the Extend-A-Flo brush. And, again, by we, I mean Ben. I have yet to clean the outside windows!
Over the winter, our garage collected so much trash and junk and unnecessary things that it is time we clean it out. We started piling all sorts of things on a work bench that is located in front of where Ben parks his car. We have drawers that started to collect the junk that use to be stored in the mud room, but made it’s way into the garage. It is bad, but that’s why we clean it out in the spring.
My first suggestion is to take all of the cars out of the garage so you have lots of space to start sorting. When we first organized our garage last summer, we took everything out of every cabinet, off of every hook and out of every drawer. Grouping like-items together, and throwing away broken items, we were able to sift through all of the things that were stored in the garage. We have built-in cabinets that were such a nice bonus when we moved in. It has really helped keep things organized. I put all like-items together in different cabinets, such as our gardening items all went into cabinets.
We needed more space for toys, so we took off the doors of some cabinets to store the kids toys. I used chalkboard labels on Target dollar spot bins to keep the kids toys organized. We also drilled holes into one of the smaller cabinets and used bungy cords to hold all of the basketballs, footballs and baseballs that we have for the kids.
We have peg boards to store tools on as well. We decided to keep only the big tools on the peg boards and keep them high up so the kids wouldn’t play with them. Then on a work bench we purchased from Costco, Ben stores his tools and gadgets for outside. All of the really sharp parts are stored on the top shelf of the work bench, while the items that are in cases or not dangerous are stored on the bottom. The kids know not to play with these items, but it just makes me feel better knowing that they are not within the kids reach.
We also have a big Rubbermaid drawer organizer. We store Ben’s athletic gear in those drawers. He has a drawer for basketball gear, like his basketball shoes. A drawer for all of his flag football gear. A drawer for all of his smelly soccer gear, and a drawer for his bag that he carries all of that gear in. All of that stuff is way to smelly to bring into the house, so this is great option for us. I keep the drawer organizer right next to the door that leads into the house. All the smelly gear can be dropped off before stepping into the house.
Since I put away all of our winter gear, I also started to clean out the car. I have fuzzy blankets that I keep in the car for the kids during the winter months. I put those away and decided to take out all of the kids toys from the car. I also took everything that was in the car (minus the car seats) and put it on the floor of the mud room. Since my car is actually empty, I ran to the car wash and got my car cleaned and vacuumed. When I got home, I went through all of the toys that were in the car and only kept toys that the kids play with or read while we are driving. The rest of the toys went into a pile to donate or sell.
I also put together an “extra diaper bag” for the car. More on that later this week! I also got my oil changed and my tires rotated. I wanted to make sure everything in the car was all up-to-date.
It’s finally time to set up the patio furniture! Our cushions needed to be washed, so I used soap and water and spot cleaned them. I laid them out to dry since it was sunny this weekend. Next up, is to clean out any debris that was left in your gardens over the winter. We had a lot of leaves and dead plants that needed to be cleaned up. Since winter just hit us quickly, we didn’t have time to trim bushes or cut down some plants, so we are doing it this week to get our garden looking ready for spring. We also have an outside toy box. I took out the toys and washed them all with soap and water. They got really gross over the winter months.
Now everything is clean and organized and I can enjoy the spring and summer months with a nice, clean house! Congratulations on completing all of the tasks over the past seven weeks! You got your house clean and organized for warmer weather. Now open those windows and enjoy yourself once everything is cleaned!
Take your time this week to get everything on the outside of your house clean and organized! Please share pictures with me as I’d love to see how you are doing with cleaning and organizing your way to a happy Spring! Post your pictures to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and tag me @organizedmamas, and you could be featured on The Organized Mama!