Tuesday's assignment for the Spring Cleaning Party was to work on decluttering the living room. It's a good thing this was Tuesday's assignment and not Monday's ~ on Monday I had a mountain of clean laundry hanging out on the couch, I think the blanket fort mess on the floor (courtesy of my kids) looks a bit less daunting :). Anyway, here are some before pics of our living room:
After folding the blankets and returning them to their rightful homes, and picking up a few stray toys and books...voila!
Ah, much better :)
Ok, now onto Day 3 of the Party ~ cleaning, organizing, and decorating the living room...
First up ~ cleaning ~ when I was pregnant with my 2nd child, I switched over to a very simple, all-natural cleaning system. Basically, I use a mix of 1-part vinegar to 1-part water for cleaning most of the surfaces in our home ~ windows, counters, stovetop, and even my tv screen. I have a couple of re-usable spray bottles that I fill with this homemade concoction, and I keep one bottle under each sink (kitchen, 1st floor bath, master bath). I know that there are lots of different cleaning recipes out there, but I found that this simple recipe works well for me.
For dusting, I actually don't use any cleaning solution ~ I just take a 100% cotton rag and wipe the surface down :)
Now it's onto organizing the living room ~ our living room is home to our tv, our CD player and our favorite reading spots. Therefore, it makes sense to keep our DVDs, CDs and at least a portion of our large collection of books here. Since we moved into our home almost 8 years ago, and especially since starting our family 7 years ago, I have tried lots of different organization systems for these items. About 2 years ago, I purchased a couple zippered cd cases to store our dvds and cds, and I am very pleased with how this has worked for us.
Each case holds 100 cds or dvds ~ we have no where near that amount of either, but I really don't mind having some empty slots. We store all of our kids' dvds in one case, this is kept in our tv cabinet. We use another case to store kids' music cds and kids' audio cds (Adventures in Odyssey, books on cd, etc.) ~ this case is kept on a bookshelf in a nearby room.
For book storage, we use a mix of baskets and a wall shelf (that I absolutely love!). I try to change up the books every month or so just to keep things fresh around here :)
And finally decorating ~ this one is a tough one for me. Right now we have white spots on our walls where I had dh cover up picture holes. We have paint in the basement, waiting to be used to touch up these areas...it's just a matter of taking the time to do it. I also want to replace some of the artwork on our walls with something that "says us" a bit more than our current wall-hangings...but I'm not sure what that will be yet.