Organic Living (on a Budget!)

Clean eating and do-it-yourself tips from a newly married couple's persepective


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How We Stay Organized in One Small Townhouse

Gooooood afternoon! I hope wherever you are, it’s not rainy and gloomy like Central Florida is today. Yucky! Unless you like rainy and gloomy, of course 😉 Today I’ve been laying low and grinding out a lab report (last assignment before Spring Break officially starts! Woohoo!). Perfect rainy day “activity,” I suppose.

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This was my morning…last minute pre-lab writing, and a nice rainshower (no umbrella with me!) to start the day. It only got better when I arrived at lab and had to wait 45 minutes for a solution we made to evaporate down to 20 ml (sarcasm). Glad that’s over!

The past week I’ve been slowly moving in to my fiance’s townhouse to prepare for the “big move-in day” when we start to live together–aka Wedding Day, aka SATURDAY! He’s been so kind to let me slowly but surely “take over” his place with my stuff and reorganize everything some things. My favorite spot is definitely my little reading room/office downstairs.

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It’s close enough to the kitchen that I can snack at a moment’s notice (Snofrisk spreadable goat cheese is on sale at Whole Foods! We stocked up for my snacking impulses 😉 ), far enough from the TV that I can’t hear it when I’m reading/studying/writing. And the natural light! I’m in heaven ❤

But the problem with combining two lives in one small townhouse is you run out of room fast. I’ve had to get creative and realllly stay on top of cleaning to make all our stuff fit. Here are some of the ways I’ve made it work:

1. Handle mail only once.

4 stack of letters

(source)

If you don’t, this happens ^ on every flat surface in your little townhouse…like the dining table. And coffee table. And desk. Kinda makes it hard to eat, work, or put your feet up 😉 So when I get the mail, I choose “trash” or “keep” during my initial look-through,  and if it’s “keep,” I file it/take action as necessary right away.

2. Take it one room at a time.

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We took a day to “makeover” the bedroom, and added a dresser for me and two new lamps. The whole day was set aside for assembling the new stuff, cleaning out the nightstand I’ll be using (which was extra “storage” previously), cleaning the top of his dresser, dusting the bedroom, and vacuuming the carpet. Breaking down the huge task of moving in down to one room per day made it much more manageable.

3. Create a cleaning schedule

Cleaning schedule

I created a schedule of some of the “bigger” chores around the house, dividing them by days of the week. This way, none of those annoying really important cleaning jobs get put off more than a week. Also, I don’t get that “where do I even start?” feeling on the weekends, where everything used to pile up because I hadn’t cleaned anything during the week. On days when I have more time, I do bigger jobs like cleaning the bathrooms. Doing the laundry and cleaning the wood floors downstairs don’t take long, as long as I’m home for a big enough chunk of time to do those multi-step jobs, I can study or write in between steps.

4. Put things back where you got them

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(this was from when I was moving out of my old bedroom…no, I did not normally just drop everything on my bed when I got home at night!)

This tip is HUGE. If, for example, I bring home a lunchbox, empty coffee cup, purse, notebook, and iPad from class every day and drop everything on the coffee table, it will inevitably stay there. But if I take a few minutes to put each item away immediately upon arriving home, the table stays clean plus I always know where to find my stuff. Otherwise, it gets buried under the stuff I bring home the next day, and so on.

What are your organizing tips for small spaces?

Leave a comment and let me know!

❤ Gina