Even though as of this writing it doesn’t feel much like spring, believe it or not, the first day of spring is on March 20.
I love the springtime in Georgia. Sure, we will still have some cold, windy and rainy days, but very soon we will all be enjoying glorious sunny days and crisp, cool nights.
Besides the weather and the emergence of flowers, grass and beautiful green trees, I also love that spring represents a good time to get organized. Most of us have plenty of projects we put off — sometimes for years — and spring is the perfect time to tackle them.
If the thought of projects, big or small, overwhelms you, try my tactic: write out a plan. There is something about seeing your projects on paper that makes them real and more doable. I like to pen my projects into a small notebook, that way I can keep track of the projects and also make lists of supplies or contractors I might need to contact.
If your spouse will be involved, get them in on the act of planning your strategy. With notebook and pen in hand, go into every room in your home and assess what needs to be done.
Are the baseboards particularly dirty? Does the closet need some serious de-junking? Does the grout need to be redone?
Be honest, but also be realistic. If you write down “remodel bathroom,” is that a realistic goal?
If that is currently unrealistic, concentrate on thoroughly cleaning the bathroom and perhaps getting new bath mats, towels and other accessories. Even if you can’t remodel this year, those new features and a thorough cleaning will be a great stand in until you can get to the remodel phase.
Are there areas in your home you neglect because you don’t see them on a regular basis?
A few years ago we tackled our attic — something we had managed to put off for more years than I care to admit. It took hours to haul everything out of the attic, and several days to sort through all of it.
It was a major undertaking and the entire time I kept thinking, “why did I save this?” After so many hours and days of sorting, donating and tossing out, we were left with four large plastic bins. They were neatly labeled and contained things I truly wanted to keep for the future. Things such as baby and children’s books, certain special baby clothes, a few special toys and other keepsakes I knew our children would one day want.
After hauling the vacuum up those stairs and giving it a good cleaning, our attic looked amazing. What a feeling of accomplishment.
Maybe you don’t have a junky attic, but do you have a storage room or shed that could use cleaning out? What about that basement closet? Spring is the perfect time to take on these projects before the heat of the summer sets in.
This is also a terrific time to assess any outdoor projects you might have been putting off.
Do any fences need mending? Does your garage floor need to be painted? Do windows need to be caulked, or even repaired or replaced?
This is a great time to give all of your windows, inside and outside, a good cleaning. Ditto for shutters. Does the front porch and walkway need pressure washing? Does the deck need the same and possibly to be re-stained?
If possible, get the entire family in on the projects. Bribery helps, especially with teenagers, and sometimes with husbands. Plan rewards for each major project — a special dinner out, a trip to the movies, and for teenagers, money is always welcome.
After this cold winter, most of us cannot wait for some beautiful and consistent good weather. Celebrate spring by checking off items from your project list. Happy spring!
South Forsyth resident Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.