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Organize now, to enjoy Fall later


With October just around the corner, it's not too early to think about getting ready for the Fall season, and organizing and preparing your home is a great place to start


Start outside you home with all those beautiful summer plants that are starting to fade away. Clear out your flower beds, window boxes, gardens and potted plants. Store your decorative pots/containers in the garage or shed. Next, move onto your patio and cover larger furniture pieces with protectors and store smaller items so they won't be damaged by the upcoming colder and harsher weather. Collect all the outdoor toys that were used over the summer and store them a plastic tote or toss them if they are broken.


Next, move to the garage which was a busy place over the summer with lots of activity and lots of stuffed dropped in it. Put away all the camp chairs, bikes, sports equipment, and gardening supplies and make room for the car. While you're at it, clean out your car and make sure you have a basic winter emergency kit for it.


Now, it's time to go inside the house. Start with your hall closet/entry area. Put away the flip flops and make room for jackets and winter coats. Leave enough space in the hall closet for guests to hang their jackets or coats and put out a shoe tray for wet or snowy shoes.


Next, tackle the clutter that has built up in the high use areas of your home. Clean out your mail center, purge your pantry/frig of expired food, and redistribute items that belong in other areas of the house. If the kids are learning from home, evaluate their space and see how things are working for them. If they are learning at the kitchen table, create easy to move caddies for a quick clean up before dinner and before guest come over.


Moving on to the bedrooms; tackle the closets. Evaluate your younger children's wardrobe and donate clothes that they wont fit in next year, and encourage older children to evaluate what they have as well. In your own closet, switch out summer clothes for your warmer clothes and evaluate as you go along. If it doesn't fit or you didn't wear something this summer, will you wear it next year? If not, go ahead and donate it now instead of storing it for another year and still not wear it next summer. Summer shoes/purses can be stored in totes on upper shelves or in under the bed containers along side your summer clothing if your closet is on the smaller side.


Finally, organize your calendar. It seems that once October comes, it's a mad rush to New Years. Having a family dry erase family calendar in the kitchen will help everyone know what's going on and stay organized during that hectic time. Choosing one color marker for each family member will help keep your family up to date with a quick glance.


Taking care of all these things in advance of colder temperatures will allow you to enjoy the season more and be more relaxed over the holidays.

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