It wasn’t until I spent my first winter in New England that I came to appreciate the art of “spring cleaning.” After a very snowy first winter and lots of cabin fever, we had managed to just accumulate a lot of clutter. As the weather warms and the birds fly back from their winter vacation down south, I relish the opportunity to purge all the winter clutter in anticipation of spring. Last year, when I was pregnant with Judah, my nesting urge was kicked into overdrive when it was time to once again do our spring cleaning!
This year, as we (thankfully) count down the last few days of winter and get ready to finally welcome spring, I need to rethink my spring cleaning plans to accommodate our very active, progressively more mobile 10-month old infant. Just as we’ve started baby proofing around the house, I need to start looking at our home through Judah’s eyes to see what we need to tackle when it comes to our spring cleaning.
Click on through to check out our spring cleaning checklist – for baby!
✓ Tame the Toys
Judah received a lot of wonderful new toys at Hanukkah last year and his cousin Willow was even nice enough to give him some of her very gently loved toys as well. Sometime in January, it’s like our living room exploded with toys everywhere. I finally reached my breaking point a few weeks ago and purchased a large plastic tub to sort his toys and keep things tidy at the end of each day. Spring cleaning is also a great time to go through and double check toys: do any need new batteries? Are things chewed up to oblivion (thank you endless teething)? It’s also a great excuse, as cold and flu season winds down, to wipe down all toys and play surfaces such as mats with disinfectant cleaner.
✓ Scrub Those Floors
We live in a 200+ year old home and our entire house is nothing but wide plank hardwood floors. With two cats, the dust piles up quickly. Now that Judah is spending more and more time crawling and scooching around, it’s especially important that we keep our floors as clean as possible, since everything little thing is bound to end up in his mouth.
✓ Tackle the Car and Car Seat
Much like our living room, our car has become a mobile mess! From teethers to stray socks to a misplaced baby bottle cap, it’s time to tackle the car! It’s also a good time to read our car seat’s instruction manual about how to carefully take it apart to wash the fabric coverings. Judah’s car seat could use a good deep cleaning since it was first bought. We’ve also decided to keep some toys just for the car since it helps decrease the clutter in the house while giving Judah set toys to look forward to when we go out; it also helps us keep track of toys, too, to make sure we don’t lose any. I need to get a small bin or seat pocket to help organize Judah’s “car toys.”
✓ Reorganize the Diaper Bag
Just like I plan on taking apart our car seat, I’m going to basically turn the diaper bag inside out: get all the cracker and puff crumbs out of there, toss the whole bag and the changing pad that came with it into the washer. Now that Judah has a pretty predictable set of needs when we go out, it’s also a good time to restock the bag with only the barest essentials so I’m not stuck carrying a bulky diaper bag filled with things we don’t need.
✓ Hose Down the High Chair
Mealtime is so much fun with Judah, but it’s also pretty messy! I don’t know how he does it, but he manages to grind some morsel of food as much as his can into the various crevices and corners of his high chair. Just like I plan on taking apart the car seat, I’m going to do the same for his high chair and give it all a good scrub down and wash.
✓ Check Bottles and Replace Old Nipples
Judah’s been getting bottles since he left the hospital and at one point, we had at least three to four different brands of bottles as we tried to figure out which ones worked best for us. We settled on the NUK Orthodontic bottles; Judah was comfortable with them and I loved the Mickey Mouse designs! Nipples typically should be replaced every two to three months; we’ve found that if we run them through our dishwasher, they wear out faster, so we wash them all by hand. Since Judah’s been teething, he’s really chomped on and torn up a few, too. Now’s the perfect time to get toss some nipples and switch most of them to NUK’s soft silicone spout as we teach Judah how to use a sippy cup.
✓ Go Through All of Baby’s Clothing
Judah is growing like a weed! At least once every other day I’m putting an outfit on him in the morning and telling him, “Well, looks like today’s the last day you’re going to wear this!” and tossing the outfit into our donation bag at the end of the day. I think it’s a waste to throw out clothing, so we regularly donate old clothes. I just make sure everything’s washed and bagged and then we take them to a local shelter right here in town. If an outfit is stained really badly, only then will it get tossed.
What’s on your baby’s spring cleaning checklist? What am I forgetting? Share your spring cleaning and baby proofing tips in the comments!