Autumn Resolutions: 12 Things to Do This September

Yes - the lazy days of summer are ending - even if some parts of the country are in resort or tropical climates - and Back-to-School is in the air. With the arrival of a new season also comes the time to change routines, recipes, and reorganize your home for Fall. Think of these as your new Autumn Resolutions. If you are blessed with a family, take advantage of the extra hands with a Chore Chart for the kids and a loving Honey Do list for the hubs. This can help encourage house pride if everyone is engaged and involved in the tasks vs. everyone expecting one person to do it all - unless of course you're solo, you can do it all, just take it one space and one task at a time. You can get started with these tips inspired from Style at Home on 10 Things to Do this September for purging and decluttering to help making your home serene and inviting (plus I added a few of my own), not only for Fall but the upcoming Holiday Season - plus two to plan on to get out and enjoy the autumn weather...

1. Cut the Clutter
Getting organized is a significantly easier task when there is 'less stuff' to deal with. Before tackling larger home projects, take a house tour and survey your own home - clear out any clutter accumulated from summer, or even collected over past seasons - especially in closets. Ballard Designs recently shared the above closet as the perfect closet cleanse for a master closet. Afterwards, avoid the hassle of a garage sale by taking the best of your purge to to a local consignment shop, and simply donate the rest to a local charity or church thrift shop.

Clutter Clearing Checklist:
Clothing Closets
Handbags, Shoes, Ties and Scarves
Jewelry Drawers
Dressers, Credenzas & Buffets
Linen Closets
Under-The-Bed Storage
Under the Sink + Medicine Cabinets
Guest Room Closets
Office Storage
Laundry Rooms
Garage (and even car trunks!)
Junk Drawers & Drop Zones

2. Prep the Front Hall Closet for Winter Coats
With the Fall fashion season comes a closet full of coats, whether they are new purchases or coats being taken out of storage (and dry-cleaned). So true: "Don't be caught scrambling for a coat on the first chilly morning of Autumn." Get organized ahead of time with these SAH 6 Solutions for Front Hall Closets... and don't forget to also include your mudroom too! In small spaces, simply adding an amoire can create convenient coat organization.
In even smaller spaces, wall mounted hooks can help, especially with kids coats and back-packs... just install children's coat hooks a little lower for them to reach.

3. Organize the Broom Closet + Under the Sink Cabinets + Spice Drawers & Baking Supplies
Your household chores will go a lot faster once your cleaning supplies are under control. Check out these suggestions for a clutter-free broom closet -- including organization ideas for those of us without one! Check baking supplies, spices, and their expiration dates (especially on baking powder & flour). Besides also cleaning up the kitchen areas, take a peek under the bathroom sinks as well - clean brushes, condense beauty supplies, purge expired medicines (especially cold medicines from last year).  

4. Organize Summer Photos
Whether your camera is digital or an old-school 35mm, if you want to enjoy the sunny warmth of your summer photos come the cooler months for Fall and Winter, they need to be organized. Style at Home has solutions for both your boxes and envelopes full of photos along with tips for organizing the files on your computer. Personally, when I upload photos to Flickr or to my computer, I automatically will highlight all and rename them, usually with the season + year. I tend to label folders starting with the year, so by years end, I can take all that year's photos, and place them all inside ONE folder of that year.

5. Focus on Clean Air
As the weather gets cooler and you keep windows open less often, your home will be getting less and less fresh air from outside. Help keep indoor air quality high by clearing chemicals, Style at Home suggests switching to biodegradable cleaning products and investing in a few new houseplants -- English ivy, peace lilies and gerber daisies are top picks for cleaning indoor air of pollutants. If you want to save some green while being green. also see this post on How to Make Your Own Cleaning Products. Here in the southwest, we've usually had our windows on lock-down due to summer dust storms. Dusting off vents, fans, window ledges plus ensuring the air filter is changed is a must.

6. Pet Peeves Begone! 
(I LIKE this task!!)
Pick one thing (or more!) in your house that drives you crazy -- whether it be the plastic containers always falling off the kitchen shelves (Jeff's pet peeve for sure!!) or the shoes that pile up in the entryway -- and fix it for your family. Or the mish-mosh of tattered towels collected over the years in the linen closet - organize it before family guests arrive. Then sit on the couch with a cup of tea and enjoy the feeling of accomplishment.

 7. Get a Head Start on Holiday Correspondence
It may only be September, but it won't be long before it's Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, New Years Eve - and POOF! The Holiday entertaining season is over! One task you can accomplish ahead of time is organizing your stationery, cards, and writing supplies (yes - people do still send hand written cards, invitations and thank you notes). Make sure your address book is up to date now. Plan ahead for buying stamps and any cards or invitations you may need - or may be inspired to create your own you pinned last year - although I'm really loving the plaid holiday party invite (shown above) you can order at - plus see their thank you's and note cards too.

8. Get Started on Fall Entertaining
As patio party season ends, the time for more formal indoor entertaining begins. But don't hesitate to throw a few last al fresco parties if the weather holds up! Why not start testing some of those pinned  recipes you saved and then work on invitations for your next dinner party? Also- take stock in your stemware, dishware, and silverware. Check for chips, hard-water stains and missing silverware - donate odd numbers and watch for sales on replacements. For extra tips on entertaining, be sure to also visit Hadley Court blog where I have contributed a few posts such as:

 9. Start Your Fall Garden Clean-Up
After a long summer of enjoying your pool, patio, and garden, it's now time to start preparing it for the winter chill. If you live in the southwest, many plants may have already suffered from a summer drought. Purging this loss now will help in your Fall garden clean up. For more suggestions, visit Style at Home's Mid-September Garden Chores, and then set aside a few hours on a sunny afternoon to get started. Maybe even plan on working in a few hurricane candle-lights into your fall containers for entertaining, like the one above from

 Build a banquet to customize your eat-in kitchen.

 10. Plan Your Next Project
From a major kitchen reno to a paint projects (moldings + stair railings + doors) or refreshing the guest bedroom, any home project will go smoother if it's well planned. Even if you are still in the dreaming stage (or hoping to move!), still pull together your vision and a plan. Visit a book store (remember those?) order a pumpkin spice latte and flip through some new design books plus  September issue magazines for inspiration... and if that isn't enough inspiration for you, spend a morning with a cup or two of coffee (or tea) flipping through design books you already have - and when all else fails, there is always Pinterest for a plethora of home design and decorating ideas!

 Two additional tasks to Do This September 
(that can get you off line and out of the house!):

11. Support Local Venues
When the heat of summer dies down (especially here in the southwest!), it usually brings out some wonderful Fall concerts, wine tastings, farmers markets, and even art walks. Look up your local parks, cities, and even universities to see what's happening in your area. Who knows - You may learn of a new-to-you wine which becomes your favorite, you could hear a new local band with a sound you can't find on the radio (and live music without a stadium crowd), or you may learn of a new Fall food truck gathering that becomes part of your family Friday routine (plus a fun way to try new foods)!

12. Travel
If you're fortunate enough to live in an area with beautiful Fall foliage, even if it's an hour or two away, take a drive to experience the Fall splendor. The new sights can create some beautiful new images for your family, of you and your spouse, or even create seasonal art for your walls and picture frames. Not to mention, the beautiful memories you can capture with the time shared experiencing different surrounding, fresh air, and getting off line. If your family lives across the miles, and you can't be together for the holidays in November or December, book a flight and celebrate during September (or even October!) Living here in Arizona's east valley, September is a nice time to take a drive up to Sedona. 
  Visit my previous series post - Sedona in September: 
Vistas & Views
Chapel of the Holy Cross
Area Artisan Finds & Shops

 The leaves will be changing before you know it - it's already getting darker earlier - so take the time now in September to make your Autumn Resolutions. Also, stop by Hadley Court blog to read my guest post: Top 5 Organizing Tips for Back To School Families

Thanks for stopping by!

1 comment:

  1. Fantastic post Lynda ~ helps me get into the fall mindset. I'm always a little resistant to let summer go!



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