It’s the beginning of May and summer is right around the corner – especially for those of us in GA where most schools end the school year in the coming weeks. Whether you have more time available to get projects done over the less hectic summer months or even if you become time challenged due to kids being home and vacation plans, here are some ideas on great organizing projects to tackle at this time of year.
Kids’ Backpacks and Lunchboxes: (15 minutes to an hour, based on how much is in said backpack)
Don’t let those backpacks sit around all summer long waiting for the end-of-the-school-year clean out. For starters, those empty wrappers and lunch leftovers are sure to set off an odor nightmare. But secondly, it’s best to go through the papers and folders while subject matter is still fresh to see what may be worth keeping for future reference. So, go ahead and empty those babies out all over the kitchen table, counter or floor. Sort out the trash and separate the papers by class. Any worthwhile papers can be stored in their folders or binders in a convenient location to where your child does homework or create a reference file system with folders for each class where those papers can be easily retrieved. Lastly, what supplies are “banged up” and need to be trashed versus those that can be reused next year. Store those in an area where you will remember you have them for when it’s time to get ready for next school year.
Kids’ Art and Schoolwork: (1 hour or more if there is a large quantity)
Yes, we want to keep our kids hard work and artistic creations, but it is not realistic , nor advised, to keep it all! And let’s face it, those large solar system projects take up a whole lot of room. Take a picture of the item, even with your child proudly beaming with it. Keep the picture, toss the item. Even well written papers can be scanned and saved online. If you must keep the object, then have a designated keepsake bin or display shelf in his/her room where it can live. I recently discovered this company, https://www.artkiveapp.com/#box which makes this project super easy!
Kids’ Clothing: (1-3 hours)
Now is a great time to assess a child’s wardrobe, purging too small/too worn items. Donate the good items to a charity of choice, worthwhile causes being Foster Care Support Center, battered women’s shelters, North Fulton Charities, and yes, Goodwill. I recently spent 3 hours in my own son’s room cleaning out his room, dresser and closet. Poor child was left with a good supply of tee shirts and dress socks. The rest – mostly too small! Give it a good sort, purge and reorg.
Does your child wear a uniform? What items will still fit next year and which are too small? Pull out those that won’t fit and give back to the school for a used uniform sale or give to a friend. Nicely hang, fold, store the keepers so they are ready at the beginning of the year.
Beach/Pool/Outdoor Toys: (30 minutes to an hour)
Are ratty beach towels hanging out in your linen closet? What about mildewy pool tools? Are they located in multiple or inconvenient locations? Gather them up, assess their usefulness, and store all together.
And while I provide time estimates for each of these projects, they are just that – estimates. Some of you can accomplish them in less time and some will need more, based on a long list of reasons. Furthermore, don’t fret about having to do it all at one time. Does your child’s room overwhelm you to paralysis? Start with ONE DRAWER! Set a timer and work in 15-30 minute increments and pick back up the next day. Make it fun – turn on some good tunes, make it a game, set up rewards for all those who help accomplish the task. Then enjoy the fruits of your labor by having a wonderful summer!