Monday, February 20, 2017

34 Weeks of Clean Rinse and Repeat- Week 7: The Dining Room

 OK, I am going to just jump in feet first and say it- I am so excited about this week's challenge.  Why, you ask? One, we are DONE with the kitchen.  And two, because I do not currently have a dining room.  We have had many in the past but short of being just another place to hold extra stuff, they are not a good fit for our family so I am ok with our lack of one.  Dining rooms tend to be areas that only get used a few times a year and otherwise go unnoticed.  Or get turned into a school room, but that's another post!

BUT, lest you think I got out of this week's challenge entirely, let me put your mind to rest.

I may not have a formal dining room in this house but I do have two additional storage areas- one that "should" be housed in a dining room-type space and one that happens to be a good place to hold the overflows that usually end up in our dining room.  When one moves frequently and lives in a variety of types of homes (yep that's us), one gets a little creative and has to think outside the box.

Actually, I am not particularly good at that, but luckily I have a few friends that are. So, let me show you a few of their creative solutions to my lack of a dining room while we tackle some clutter and clean those spaces.

Your to-do list -
  •     Open up those buffets and such and declutter!  Start by taking it ALL out, purge what you do not need, and then put it back, neatly please.  We are currently using this dresser as a "hutch" because it will not fit in my daughter's bedroom.  This is actually the second house we have done this, and it has grown on me.  I will miss it when it someday goes back where it belongs

Inside it are things like placemats, tablecloths, and a few silver trays I use for entertaining.  One of the deep drawers is also the perfect place to store the punch bowl.  After taking out a few things to move on to Goodwill, four of those drawers are empty!  Yay me!

ahhhh, I love empty spaces!

 The second area we keep dining room type stuff in is in our basement wet bar area, so I cleaned it up as well.  Remember, if you have things spread out in different areas, catch them all.

 A few notes, especially for those of you with formal dining rooms!

  -So here's the deal, grandma's china may be lovely but if it does not get used it is just taking up space.  If you love it and use it, keep it.  If not, give it to someone who will.  This past year I finally let go of one of our Christmas china sets.  Now I have only one, but someone somewhere is now enjoying the other set (I hope).  Win win!

 - Almost 25 years ago I thought it was a great idea to register for 12 wine glasses and 12 champagne glasses, along with 12 of a lot of other things I did not need or use.  Eventually I gave our movers a break and passed them on (you are welcome!).  Yes, they were pretty, no they were not necessary.

 -Yes, I admittedly own several sets of dishes.  (Although not Christmas ones anymore!)  I promise I often feed large groups at a time and I use them.  ;)

 -Yes, you CAN have too many tablecloths and placemats.  Ask me how I know.  I now have a few less.  Grandma's old "antique" one was lovely, but, with a few holes in it, I was not going to use it. Sensibility trumped sentimentality.  I think she would understand.
 -If you entertain and can justify owning glass plates and a punchbowl, by all means keep them. I do.  But if not, most churches have sets like that and are usually more than happy to let you borrow theirs.  Again, make decisions that are right for you and then be happy with those decisions.
  • Now that those furniture pieces are cleaned out, time to clean them up and make them shine!  Clean top to bottom.
  • If you do have a separate dining room, pull all the furniture out from the walls and clean behind each piece, vacuuming or mopping, whichever is applicable.
  •  Now is also the time to deep clean your table and chairs.  If you have one in the kitchen, sorry, but go back and hit it, too.  Not just the top, but the legs and all.  Chairs too!  Just think about how many dirty hands touch the rungs and sides of chairs.  Ok, don't think about it- just scrub! Castille soap and water are great for this job!
  •  Other areas to clean- mini blinds (did I tell you I loathe mini blinds?), windows, curtains, chair rails, light switches, and chandeliers.  This is the time to get it all.
  •  Last area, the floor.  Just like in the kitchen, work your way around the baseboards and then on to the floor.

Remember, our goals include deep cleaning all those surfaces, de-cluttering what we don't need or simply do not use anymore, and reorganizing.  This is what can happen when you put your mind to it-

The local Goodwill store likes us these days!

Tired yet?  Trust me, this is probably not going to be a one-day job for most of you. If you do not have a dining room at all, then make that kitchen table sparkle and reward yourself with a treat.  Chocolate works great!

6 weeks of challenges down!  How are you doing?  We love seeing all of your pictures each week and are amazed at all of the people still in the running for our prize giveaway at the end of our series.   A BIG thank you to 621 Gifts and Redeemed for supplying such great treats!!!

Wanna see another one of my favorite signs from Redeemed?

Beautiful, huh?

So... another week of cleaning and we are on our way to taking our homes back one week at a time!  Glad you are with us!


  1. Oh, I remember the last time we did this. Now I see that you are doing another round. :o) To clean or not to clean - at this time in my life - that is the question. Looks great, and I will give it serious consideration. I do love these challenges.

  2. We would love to have you again! SO glad you "found" us- must be fate! ;)


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