Sunday, April 3, 2011

Spring Cleaning and Curing


I had been going to wait for the Biannual Apartment Therapy Cure but there's been nothing said about one starting up this Spring. Given the butchered version of the Cure Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan (M G-R) offered last fall, I have a sneaking suspicion that there won't be a full-on 8 week AT Spring Cure in 2011.

What I really want to do is Spring Clean, anyway. But, I'm afraid I will get bogged down and discouraged if I simply focus on cleaning, cleaning and more cleaning.

Cleaning the shelves that used to be above the stove. It was a Ver Unpleasant Job. Fall Cure, 2006


There is a deliberate plan of action in the Eight Week Cure--a sort of built-in magic which keeps one going. As I've always done it as part of an on-line group, I've always attributed the magic to the group dynamic. But, perhaps I am wrong. Perhaps it is in the Cure itself.

One of those things which Just Happens during a Cure--the Spice rack project, Spring Cure 2009

Nonetheless, I do not simply want to do the Eight Week Cure--and certainly not on my own. I have done it many, many times and it's not exactly what I need at the moment. (Though, frankly, if an on-line group Cure is announced tomorrow, I would sign right up.) I want to put together a hybrid plan for the next two months--Spring Cleaning plus parts of the Cure.

Planning a gallery wall in the upstairs hallway, Spring Cure 2008

Spring cleaning is really about four action steps. M G-R incorporates these into three Cure tasks. The first two (below) are part of what Maxwell calls the breath of the home. The third relates to keeping the bones of the home strong. The fourth pertains to its heart.

1) Decluttering
2) Cleaning everything in sight, from top to bottom.
3) Making repairs
4) Freshening--or decorating--depending upon the extent of the changes you want to make.

M G-R has his own fourth category of Cure tasks, the head. This refers to the purpose of each space and the home as a whole contributing to the life you want to live. That's not something generally addressed in cleaning check lists. Addressing these issues is the difference between doing a "cure" and just doing a whole bunch of cleaning.

Twenty Days
Re-doing the dining room/home office, Fall Cure, 2007



So, my spring cleaning list will include some of the activities that MG-R encourages, like balancing colour and hardness/softness and other tasks like continuing to purchase flowers.

Here's how I see it shaping up:

1) I will take eight weeks to do this. I'd rather take four, but I do not want to rush myself.

2) I will do the Deep Treatment, room by room, organized as MG-R outlines in the book.

3) Each room will have an extensive cleaning checklist drawn from these resources:

From About. com, a gateway page with all kinds of links to other pages and links with information.
Spring Cleaning Guide

and from Martha Stewart: Spring Cleaning Checklist

4) I will pick a 15 minute decluttering activity every week day and post about it.

Donations pile, Spring Cure, 2008


To stay accountable, at the start of each week, Sunday or Monday, I'll post the cleaning checklist and the decluttering zones. I'll post about my progress as I go and by the end of the week we'll see how well I've managed to get everything done. I really want to do this thoroughly, so I'm hoping that it won't take more than a couple of hours each day. But I am an all or nothing person and I can easily absorb myself in a project 24/7. So, I'm not making any promises!

Week One: Diagnosis, Vision and Planning, begins tomorrow.I would love some company!

7 comments :

Leena said...

I've been waiting for the same AT spring cure too. I do hope they will have it, atleast some sort, shorter, longer, anything. Those group things really get me moving.

So I think I'll atleast join your cure. Thanks for the invitation :)

Alana in Canada said...

Yay Leena! Will you reactivate your blog to post your progress?

scb said...

Yay Alana! (Boy, those pictures brought back memories!)

I'm in the throes (or is that THROWS) of decluttering/sorting through Mum&Dad's stuff. I have much more to do in the storage room and writing room than anywhere else, but I'm in! It's more fun in our own little group, anyway.

Please make me one promise though. Don't even THINK about refinishing the floor this time. Okay? *grin*

Colleen said...

I suspect we'll see a Cure after the Small Cool competition is over...

Alana in Canada said...

@ scb So glad to hear from you. It's going to be quite the journey going through your parents' things. Any encouragement I can offer, I'd be happy to! No promises about floors, though. ;)

@Colleen. That's great--I'm psyched up to do this now. As well, there's nothing to do outside except shovel poop for the month of April, so this is a good time for me. Maybe when it does come round, I'll do One room remedy--never have done that before!

Anne (in Reno) said...

I wish I still had the book, I'd be all over a one room cure. I might try and follow along with a version of yours anyways, since I have no idea what's going on on AT anymore.

Carpet Cleaning Services said...

Hey Alana !!! I am waiting for your upcoming cleaning checklist. Please post it soon.It could be great help for all those are looking to get more ideas for spring cleaning and all that.

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