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It's day 3 of's 30-Day Spring Tidying Challenge! If you're just joining us, please check out the link above for how this works and the links below for what we've covered, so far:

Got an easy one for you today: we're going to tidying up the dining surfaces! Depending on your home, this may take 30 seconds or 30 minutes.


If you haven't already, please subscribe for a free, printable 30-Day Spring Tidying Challenge schedule!


Below are my suggestions for how to approach cleaning your dining area:

1. Clear off your dining surface(s). For us, this constitutes the dining table and small piece of counter on the kitchen peninsula. This may take a little longer if you have a separate formal dining room.

2. Clean your dining surfaces with the appropriate cleansers.

3. Decide what items you need/want to keep on the dining table/counter/etc.

Most of the time, the only thing on our dining table is a decorative bowl. If you've completed day 1 of this challenge, you'll know bare surfaces are how I roll!

Over the holidays, I might add a candlestick holder and some seasonal garnishes.

For more on our simple holiday decor click here.


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Modern Metal Wire Fruit Bowl ($19.99,

Large Decorative Wood Bowl ($17.68,


Things to consider:

Dining areas shouldn't have much on them when not in use. When I see a formal dining table perpetually decked out with plates, cutlery, and glasses----as if the queen might be dropping by any minute----I think about how much dust has accumulated on the flatware, just sitting there.

It also kind of reminds me of my grandma's house. Does anyone even do this anymore???

To be honest, I don't even condone leaving placemats on the table between meals. That's just lazy.

The simplest way to make any room appear tidier is by clearing off flat surfaces!


4. Divide the things that are on the dining surfaces into 4 boxes/bins. For the average home, this shouldn't take long:

i) belongs on the dining surface (i.e. vase, fruit bowl, other centerpiece)

ii) belongs elsewhere in the kitchen/dining room or elsewhere in the home

iii) fit to donate or sell used

iv) garbage/recycling

5. Return only the items that are designated dining-surface-dwellers back to your dining surfaces.

6. Redistribute the items that belong in the kitchen or dining room, but not on the dining table, to their appropriate drawers/cabinets; redistribute the items that belong elsewhere in the house.

7. Donate. Take the boxes designated as 'to sell/donate' and put them somewhere out-of-sight, but accessible (i.e. mudroom or basement). You'll continue to add to these each day for the rest of the month, with the casualties of each day's tidying task. At the end of the month, you can make a trip (or several) to your local donation bank and/or go on an online selling spree.

8. Dispose of and/or recycle items from the designated garbage/recycling bins.


That's it for day 3! Join us tomorrow for day 4, when we'll tackle everyone's favorite drawer: the Tupperware drawer!

Also tomorrow: the first of my 6 weekly instalments for the One Room Challenge!


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