If you haven’t heard of the January Cure before, it is a free month-long program from Apartment Therapy dedicated to help you love your home. Loving your home includes cleaning out spaces that don’t make you happy (also re: The KonMari Method of Tidying Up Your Digital Life).
Day 1: Declutter a Drawer
I opted for drawers in my entryway. These consist of many pens, paper, flashlights, dusting cloths. You name it and it is probably in there. This is the before picture.
Potato liked when I was organizing the shoe strings.
I ended up not having a cleaning problem, but more of an organization problem. There were stationary sets in both drawers and tools in both drawers. It was more of condensing the two into the appropriate categories.
Day 2: Create a To-Do List
If this task isn’t perfect for me. I love to-do lists. With the prospect of moving soon, I will need to get into the cabinets to see what can be tossed (old boxes) and what can be given to Goodwill.
I tried to focus on the items that are hidden away that I don’t always look at unless I open a drawer or a cupboard. This should help me easily pinpoint areas that aren’t always noticed.
Day 3: Set up an outbox and put one thing in it
I am already one step ahead for this day, because on day 2 I was already thinking of things to go to Goodwill. I have two bags full of items already.
Day 4: Get rid of paper clutter
The hardest part of working from home is that I keep so many notes. If I attend a meeting, I take notes and keep them on the paper. I’ll rip it out of the notebook and keep the notes handy. So, the problem is that most of my note piles have to do with work and not my personal office papers.
Day 5: Clean the floors and treat yourself to flowers
I didn’t treat myself to flowers on this day, but Zack and I took photos with our plot of land that our house will be built on! If that isn’t better than flowers, I don’t know what is. I followed up on January 10 with some flowers.
Day 6: Take a mini-meditation and pick a project
I started my morning with some flexibility yoga, so that takes care of my meditation for the day. All the projects on my to-do list were fairly simple, so I only have the pantry left to tackle. I found some PS4 games in the entertainment center (we got rid of the PS4 sometime last year), so we traded the games in at GameStop today.
Day 7: Do a 30-minute closet cleanout
Day 8: Kick off a living room reset
The entertainment center was already part of my to-do list that I made on Day 2. This was the biggest thing that needed to be tackled besides the weekly vacuuming and a little bit of dusting.
Day 9: Schedule a virtual home tour with a friend
Definitely not a step for me…
Day 10: Clean the kitchen and treat yourself to flowers
More flowers? My first bouquet isn’t dead yet, so I’ll hold off on those. My husband and I clean out our fridge at the end of the week – every week. We try to eat or toss any leftovers that haven’t been touched. Any vegetables or fruit that has gone dull surely ends up in the trash. And while I hate wasting the food, I feel even worse that I didn’t take the time to prep in order to reduce waste in the first place.
I cleaned my counters, my appliances, and the garbage can within about 10 minutes. It was a quick clean on my lunch break, but I remembered to light a candle to bring in a better aura while working from home.
Day 11: Find and frame some art
I have literally run out of walls to hang art on. Since we are moving sometime this late Spring, I’ve had to start taking down the arrow pattern in my home office. Since that was electrical tape, it ended up leaving a sticky residue behind on the wall which required me to touch up the paint. Other than that wall, I have hung up lots of my art throughout my home already.
Day 12: Work on your project
I want to pain t the wall in my office, but definitely too lazy today.
Day 13: Clean up around the bathroom
I have a bunch of items that we’re trying to finish up on top of the counter (like a 99% complete box of q-tips, lotion samples, toothpicks). I keep them out so I am reminded to use them, lol. I put away items I didn’t need, then cleaned the mirror, sink, counters, and toilet. My husband washed the shower out yesterday. I also cleaned the kitchen sink today because there was some build-up going on in that mess as well.
Day 14: Do a 3-minute surface sweep
Day 15: Clean the bedroom and treat yourself to flowers
This is the third time that they’ve recommended to “treat” yourself to flowers. Yes, it’s a nice gesture, but am I out of the norm that I maybe only have flowers once a month in my home? I bought a $5 bouquet from Walmart to keep up with the program.
Also, isn’t “flipping” the mattress a fairly outdated term? With the last two mattresses we bought, we were advised that they were not flippable. Soooo… how old does your mattress need to be in order to flip it?
Day 16: Set up a home landing strip
My husband ends up using the kitchen counter for his landing space, which will change once we move, but he usually has food in his bag and it needs to be out of the dog’s reach. I keep everything else, like keys, wallet and dog leash, on the entryway table.
I try to act on any mail the same day. If I ordered some clothes to try on, then I will try everything on and prepare any returns the same day. Then it all can be moved out of the house by the next day. Mail happens to take place on the kitchen counter, too, but my husband takes the mail out the door with him in the morning.
Day 17: Get your sofa into shape
This one was therapeutic. I really was out of sorts after the weekend and a little bit of cleaning really went a long way for some clarity. I vacuumed the living room, the couch, and one chair. I also swept the kitchen. And I finally figured out how to clean the makeup off of my white jacket. Spoiler alert: it’s Dawn dish soap. Just let it sit for 10 minutes, then rinse off with cold water. So easy.
Day 18: Take a catch-up day
The microwave really needs to be cleaned and I have a pile of things to take to Goodwill by the end of the month. I’ve been slowly moving little notes for myself around my office, making sure that i’m either crossing off to-do list items or cleaning up small messes.
Oh, and an easy tip to clean the microwave: microwave a bowl of dish soap and water for 3 minutes. Then it was easy to wipe off the dirt with a paper towel.
Day 19: Reset your living room and empty the outbox
I don’t have that much “filler” items in my living room. I have extra pillows and blankets, but not a styled coffee table that showcases books or anything like that. So today was only empty the outbox for me.
Day 20: Relax and enjoy your home
Friday, the last day of the January Cure. Time to relax!