31 Day Purge

September 28, 2014

Over the past 4 years, I’ve hosted several blog series covering cleaning, organizing, budgeting & emergency preparedness.  But there’s one topic I haven’t gone over – Purging.

A Bowl Full of Lemons 31 Day Purge

THE NEW SERIES:  A Bowl Full of Lemons “31 Day Purge”

THE PROBLEM:  We have too much stuff & it’s taking over.  We’re organizing clutter and it’s time to simplify our lives & purge it once and for all.  I share a lot about organization on my blog, but after 4 years (and a lot of testimonies), I have come to the conclusion that the real issue lies within the amount of stuff we have to maintain & organize.  I have come up with a solution to the problem at hand (too much stuff), and once we face it & do something about it, organizing our lives will fall into place a little smoother.

THE SOLUTION:  To help you clear your homes of clutter, I will be hosting a 31 day series.  Each day, I will post an assignment on my blog, prompting you to sort through the clutter, in specific areas of your homes.  Then on the last day of the month, we will donate our clutter to a charitable organization (or you can sell it on Craigs List or at a garage sale).  It’s all up to you.  The purpose of this series is to purge your home, a little at a time.  It can be overwhelming to purge all at once.  By allocating a few minutes to your schedule each day, you will see a huge difference by day 31.

THE DATES:  The 31 Day Purge will begin on October 1st and last 31 days, ending on October 31st.

THE DETAILS:  The first thing you need to each morning is visit my blog to get the “daily task”.  After you complete the assignment, you can share your pictures & see everyone else’s photos, in a couple different places.

    • Home Organization 101 Facebook Group: Head on over to my Facebook Group Home Organization 101 & share your purge pictures with the 30,000+ members.  The group is all about homekeeping and the members are there to support each other & give great advice on questions you may have.
  • Instagram:  If you are on Instagram,  you can join the purge there!  Share your purge pictures by using the hash tag #abfol31daypurge.  Don’t forget to follow me!  I will be posting the daily reminders on my Instagram page HERE.

GETTING PREPARED:  There are a few things that you need to do, to prepare yourself for the 31 day purge.

  • Gather 5-6 sorting bins
  • Print out my free “sorting signs” (below)
  • Call a donation center to set up an appointment for the last day of the month (see below)

SORTING SIGNS: I’ve included the following FREE signs, for you to use during our month long purge.

    • Keep
    • Donate
    • Trash
    • Recycle
    • Garage Sale
  • Other Space

Label each bin with a sign.  If you want, you can laminate them & use them over and over.  Once you are finished purging a space, move the contents of each box into the designated area. If you are donating, place items in a trash bag & take to the garage (start a purge pile).  If you are saving for a garage sale, store items in large cardboard boxes or rubbermaid totes (in the garage) & add to the boxes as you purge each day.

Print the signs HERE!

FREE Sorting Signs via A Bowl Full of Lemons w


  1. Habitat For Humanity will come to your home & pick up all donations (for free).
  2. Salvation Army  will come to your home & pick up all donations (for free).
  3. Goodwill  Do it yourself. Pack up your car and take your donations to goodwill.

*As with all donations, don’t forget to collect a receipt. You can deduct this from your taxes.  You will need to call ahead to make an appointment, for the truck to come.  It usually takes a least a week or 2, from the time you call, so plan ahead!

SHARE THE LOVE:  If you’re joining me this month, I would love-love-love for you to share this post on social media (FB, Twitter, Pinterest & Instagram), to let others know about the new series.   <3

Happy Organizing!  You can begin the purge HERE.

151 comments on “31 Day Purge

  1. mary says:

    Im in! Need all help I can get!!

  2. angela says:

    I posted on my Facebook wall, but the default pictures only allow you to choose the advertisements on your page, you may want to fix that 🙂

  3. natalie stotts says:

    I would love to do this!

  4. Coreen Pike says:

    Looking forward to this.
    I have done 40 bags in 40 days.
    Getting ready to make another move, so this comes up at the perfect time.

  5. Tanya says:

    Thank you! The hardest part is ebbed to start. This will be a huge help!

  6. debra way says:

    I’m in! So need to do this!

  7. debra way says:

    Im in. I so need to do this!

  8. Sue says:

    I am excited to begin purging my home of all the excess belongings, collections, clutter,and stuff that I think I need/can’t live without. Truthfully, IT is controlling ME and robbing me of time and energy while I try to control it. Thanks for helping us!!

  9. allyall says:

    Yep. I know I have too much stuff! Definitely joining in. 🙂

  10. polly terpening says:

    So need to do this before another move.

  11. Carol says:

    I need this so much!!

  12. Kim says:

    I am in. Can’t wait! Getting my sort bins ready today

  13. I’m in! I’m a good purger, but will never pass up a chance to get rid of stuff. Family of 5 in a 1650 sq ft house

  14. Cortney Hardie says:

    Can’t wait!!!

  15. Annette Schuler says:

    Love this and am going to do my best to do it.

  16. Apri says:

    Meeeeeee!!! Is there somewhere I sign up?

  17. Melinda Mason says:

    Count me in! I need this and it will be a good way to have accountability!

  18. Jordi says:

    So in 😉

  19. Bonnie B. says:

    I’m definitely in! I need this, and you couldn’t have offered it at a better time for me. I’m looking forward to this. Thank you!

  20. Susan says:

    I started my purge a last week. I would love a boost or two to keep me going.

    • Cindy Bancroft-Stigall says:

      I (unknowingly) started this last week, took two boxes of stuff to our church thrift store, feels so good to unload. It almost like clearing your mind just to know the “stuff” is gone. I’m going to look for more “stuff” I don’t need or haven’t used.

  21. Stacy says:

    Count me in!!! I’m super exicted and I promise to follow thru!!

  22. Thank you so much Toni! I REALLY NEED THIS!!!

  23. Jose says:

    I am in thank you
    We all have too much needless stuff
    I am in!

  24. Terryp says:

    I’m in but I am out of state until October 4th. But I will either catch up or I will just be 4 days behind and end on the 4th of November. My concern is that my husband passed away 2-1/2 years ago and I haven’t been able to let anything go that was his yet. Do you have a strategy for being able to purge things like that?

    • Naomi says:

      Terry, I’m sorry for your loss! I’m not an expert, but I wonder if you’ve thought about collecting his things from around your home and placing them in a central location, maybe in a specific bedroom or closet. That way you haven’t yet purged them out of your home but you can start to create a living space that is less cluttered and still have the memories, tucked away?

  25. Stefanie says:

    I’m in Toni and really looking forward to this. Many items will go to our church thrift store, but other items I will be holding an online auction to sell for help fund our mission’s trip to Uganda. We are taking our 13 yr old DD with us. Best if luck to everyone involved in this purge. It’s going to change all of our lives in the most amazing ways. And Toni, thank you so much for all your time and efforts in helping us all. I love your heart in this.

  26. jacque says:

    Moving next week and will do challenge as I unpack! Have done a lot already but there is more! Thanks for the motivation!

  27. Susan keenan says:

    I’m in!!!

  28. Philippe Walker says:

    I tried to join your Facebook page listed above but it said it is a closed group.

    • Rachel says:

      being closed means that pictures and posts aren’t able to be seen by non-members. Request to be added and and administrator will be sure to add you.

  29. Meredith Southern says:

    I have been looking for the motivation that I need to get started de-cluttering my home and my life….I think I may have found just what I needed!

  30. Vkyd says:

    I want to be included in the Month of Purging…..

  31. Denise says:

    I am so excited for this. Cannot wait. Just what my family nedds. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!

  32. Jessica says:

    TOTALLY IN!!! Getting ready to PCS (military move) to the other side of the planet and need to find a new home for soooo much before the movers come. Perfect timing for the “31 Day Purge” since we pack up first week of November. Thanks so much Toni!!!!

  33. Kristen Imhof says:

    Looking forward to this!

  34. Sumer says:

    Count me in!!!

  35. Carey Ann says:

    I’m gonna give this a try, but I admit to being scared! I live with two other people too, so I’m going to have to work around them to a point. But, I think I can do it! Once the house is done, maybe I can attack the garage!! You oughtta see it. There’s zero room for me to gather a thing. Unfortunately, I’ll have to do that (neatly) in the living room. Please, excuse my nervous rambling, Toni!!!

  36. LeAnn says:

    I’m so in!! I really need to do this!!! Thank you for making it a little less overwhelming and for helping us all provide support and encouragement for each other–that way, we aren’t alone in this!!

  37. Kathy says:

    I’m in!! Let the GREAT PURGE begin. 🙂

  38. Jessica Davis says:

    I am so excited about this challenge. It comes at a perfect time. We are packing for a move and this will give me inspiration and motivation to let go of items and not haul unnecessary items cross country.


  39. Jodi says:

    I’m SO in!

  40. kathie says:

    joining. but i will be out of town oct 21-27

  41. Jessie Haynes says:

    I definitely have WAY too much crap that I need to purge. I’m in!

  42. Kelly says:

    I am in. I seem to always have stuff that could be donated:D

  43. Arzum Sanchez says:

    Please count me in I intend to make some great positive changes

  44. Emily says:

    I’m moving in seven weeks and have been itching to get ready like this. I’m in!

  45. Kristina says:

    Perfect timing. I am moving in 6 weeks

  46. Judy Spitznagle says:

    Just what I need to get me started!!!!!

  47. Definitely excited for this!

  48. Karen says:

    This is great! I am in and can’t wait to get started!

  49. Trisha Smith says:

    Perfect timing! I’m ready to reclaim my closets! 🙂

  50. Karen Limb says:

    Thank you!

  51. Karen Limb says:

    Thank you for the challenge!

  52. Robyn says:

    Totally Ready for this!

  53. Katie says:

    Really need to do this! My house is overwhelming when I look at the big picture. Excited to get started!!

  54. Amanda says:

    Im all in, I need all the help I can get. I just hang on to things and just dont understand why

  55. jennifer says:

    Oh I’ll be joining in. Thought I won’t necessairily wait until the end of the month to move it out. I know me…if I don’t take complete the action right away, I won’t do it. Once a week I’ll have to deal with it. 🙂 This is what I need. 🙂

  56. Tara Bilbao says:

    I am soooo in! We will be moving in 6-7 months and I need to get rid of a ton of stuff.

  57. Wendy says:

    I’m in!!!

  58. Agnes says:

    I would like to try this–with everybody else!!!
    Thank You

  59. Christine Keck says:

    I’ll be joining you for as long as I can. This was going to be my goal for October anyways. I’m facing the possibility of knee surgery now. I’ll put it off as long as I can, have too much I want to do.

  60. Kim says:

    I’m in! I’m preparing for a move in a few months. This will certainly help.

  61. Karen says:

    Don’t forget about Freecycle! People can give away things they no longer want as well. http://www.Freecycle.org.

  62. Jenifer says:

    Toni thanks for doing this. I am completely in….

  63. Heidi says:

    Cant wait! I am going out of town for a few days, are you going to post daily whats going on for the day, or weekly etc? Thx!!

    • Rachel says:

      The challenge will be posted daily so be sure to subscribe if you don’t already and log on each day to guarantee you don’t miss an assignment

  64. Heather says:

    I’m in and excited!!

  65. Cheryl P says:

    May I ask what font you used for the signs? If I want to add more, I’m a bit persnickety and would like them all to match. 🙂
    Thanks. 🙂

  66. Caley says:

    I absolutely love this idea!! I have just done a cupboard clean out this past weekend and it felt so good – I cannot wait to get stuck in! I’m in South Africa so will try find the best place to donate to x

  67. Mary Louise says:

    I’m so in need and READY to begin! My thoughts are exactly as Sue mentioned. I’m ready to live “clutter fre even”!

  68. Lisa-Brit Wahlberg says:

    I’m in~

  69. Michelle Sherrard says:

    yayyyy. I purged a lot recently before our move which was a HUGE help but now I am excited to really go through what we currently have. Thanks for posting this!! Super excited!

  70. April says:

    Can’t wait for this!!!!!!! Super excited!!!:).

  71. celia says:

    I need all the help I can get…thank you so much!

  72. Shelah says:

    Just the nudge I need to finish this task for my home. THANK YOU!

  73. Penni says:

    I can’t wait! I have been dealing with “organized chaos” for a very long time and am ready to get rid of it. lol
    How big of boxes/bins do you recommend getting?

  74. Shaina says:

    I am definitely in! We are having a community yard sale on 11.01.14, so this is perfect timing. Thank you!

  75. Mary Ellen says:

    I’m definitely in. SO much better having a guide along the way. No waffling! lol

  76. Marcia Kosturock says:

    I have been working on a purging pile for about two weeks now! I’m afraid I haven’t been going about it correctly though. I have a huge pile growing in my den as I clean out all the other closets ana cubbies now I’ll have to sort that before it goes out of the house.

  77. L says:

    I will definitely try to keep up with your 31 day challenge. I think it will help me get my tiny apartment more manageable. Looking forward to this! Thanks!

  78. angela gardner says:

    Totally looking forward to this…Cant wait til Oct 1 to see the first task. Thank you Toni for all your hard work 🙂

  79. Anna says:

    I’m in! So excited which areas you plan to clean. 31 days are a lot of days.

  80. Darlene says:

    I probably need to double the time frame on the 31 day purge…working bunch of real life overtime (64 hours/week- 2 kids in private college! Ugh!!) but definitely need to do purge! I have been trying to go thru my closet for over a year and have given up. I’m hoping this will give me the motivation to actually get it done!

  81. Trudy says:

    Just got new carpet and wood floors throughout the house, both up and down, so don’t want to put back all the extra junk we moved!! Perfect timing for a purge for us.

  82. Brenna says:

    I am excited to do this!

  83. Lynet says:

    This is right on time..I’m IN!!!

  84. Nikki says:

    Count me in!

  85. Jenny Lynn says:

    I am so in…this challenge comes at the perfect time for me. I am so ready to get rid all the excess stuff cluttering up my home.

  86. Sally says:

    Room in garage cleared, boxes labeled! Im ready. I live in a 600 sq ft house, and cant find anything I need under all the other stuff….looking forward to the big purge!

  87. Brandi Harris says:

    I am a very organized person and everything has a place. However, my grandmother passed away Aug. 26th and had somewhat of a hoarding problem. I think people from the depression just don’t like throwing things away. Not only do I have our house to clean and organize, I have a 4,000 sq ft. addition (never finished) packed full to clean out!!! While my husband and I lived with her to take care of her I managed to throw away and organize what she would allow me to. All I can say is please send prayers my way because it is going to take me much longer than 30 days to get things in order around here.

    • Rachel says:

      I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I understand your situation as I’m in the same with my mother passing this summer. One day at a time, one item at a time. Things will find a new home and we’ll regain our spaces.

  88. delloraine says:

    I was planning to work on decluttering this month myself, so I’m in and looking forward to the motivation and accountability from you Toni and seeing what others can conquer this month.

  89. Wendy says:

    Where is the daily task found? I can’t seem to fin fit. So happy I found your website!!

  90. stephanie Jones says:

    Count me in!

  91. Janice says:

    This is so AWESOME…and so needed!!

  92. Beth says:

    I’m in…looking forward to it! 🙂

  93. Nichole says:

    Im in! Hopfully this will help me get started on getting my house under control and have some peace of mind…

  94. Diana says:

    I saw this on my Instagram and thought it was a great idea!! I’m planning on following along and doing some videos on it along the way!! Here is my YT channel to do with home/organization videos and the video I did on it, if you want to check it out! 🙂 My main YT channel is beingmommywithstyle, but I’ve started putting all my home related items on Organize with Style.

    31 Day Purge intro video: http://youtu.be/se9OeqCocRg

  95. Mary Jane says:

    I’m in! Need to do a huge clear-out so this is perfect. Thanks Toni!

  96. Tinka says:

    I’m in

  97. Jeannie Stack says:

    I started a Little early… Working through the house from the garage to the bedrooms> with a goal of heading to the attic this will really motivate me to keep it going!

  98. Paula says:

    I’m all in!! I hauled off a back-seat full today in preparation of this event!!

  99. C. Marie says:

    Count me in (my husband too!) We are ready and need to purge!! I want to SIMPLIFY our lives and live clutter free!!

  100. Manisha says:

    Count me in !!!!

  101. sandy r says:

    Just bought my containers. Ready,set,go. Oh, Wait I have to wait until tomorrow.

  102. Abby says:

    I apologize if this has been mentioned above but will you be posting daily tasks on fb? Thanks this is a great idea.

  103. Tina Udell says:

    I want in!

  104. meg says:

    I want in!

  105. Linda says:

    Wow this is something I need!!!! I volunteer at a thrift store so I’m always bringing home things I don’t need. I need lots of inspiration.

  106. Joni says:

    I’m in!
    Thank you for the extra motivation.
    We are selling our house in a few months and I need to PURGE!

  107. Dawn Purtle says:

    I am definitely in!

  108. Carey says:

    I’m so ready to do this!!!!

  109. Tiffany says:

    Count me in!!

  110. Joan says:

    I’d like to give it a try. I guess you sign up by subscribing below to comments via RSS?

  111. Margo Hursh Schlise says:

    you’re about to save a marriage; I’m just sayin’. Lol!!!

  112. Tina says:

    I’m in….soooo much clutter I don’t know where to begin.

  113. Tommy says:

    I am so in!!!!

  114. Wanda says:

    I’m in. 🙂

  115. Heather says:

    Yes! This is perfect! Thanks for doing this series! We are working on cleaning out the house and make it ready to list. Thanks 🙂

  116. Wanda Mwalwanda says:

    I AM IN!!!! I am planning on moving the end of this year so I have started to purge, pack and clean. Getting my donations ready for pick up at the end of this month too. So EXCITED!!!!!

  117. I’m delighted by your 31 day purge! It’s very timely. I’m launching my book, “Declutter for Good: Share Your Stuff and Reclaim Your Life” in a week, and I’m always looking for handy tools to share for staying decluttered (besides my own, of course!). Not to mention that I always need handy tools myself–it’s so easy for clutter to creep back in, despite my best intentions. I plan to participate along with you, starting with my dresser drawers, and I’ll put a link to the purge on my blog/Twitter/Facebook as well. Your blog has been so helpful to me since I found it this year. Part of the reason I’m so committed to decluttering is that I really struggle to stay organized as a work-at-home-mom. I’m your typical creative – lots of ideas in no particular order – and a busy family who keeps me on my toes. I’ve especially found the lists under “Begin Here” to be excellent guides for gradually getting my own stuff in order. Keep up the good work, and I hope to see you on Facebook and Instagram. 🙂

  118. Christine B says:

    THANK YOU! This could not come at a better time! As a military family we are moving every two to three years and I REFUSE to move clutter. I’m also currently unemployed and studying for a career change so I’m home and have the time to do this! I am so excited and have loved the first 7 days of this challenge so far! BRING.IT.ON!!!!

  119. Panamamama says:

    Love this! Thanks!

  120. Rebekah says:

    I’m late, Oct 13, but jumping in with current day. Done before Thanksgiving. This is going to work!!

  121. Betty819 says:

    I printed off the sheets to attach to boxes..purging..”Other Space” can you clarify what this one is used for? What goes under recycle? I didn’t know Habitat for Humanity would pick up any donations..I occassionally go to their resale store and I see their truck coming in with a lot of furniute on it. I think if you have a lot of furniture, they will pick up but can’t imagine they would pick up “just a few items” that you could normally put in a box or bag and leave outside for a charity organization to pick up. Our church sponsors a yard sale about every 2 years and they have come and picked up what people didn’t sell or wanted to donate.

    Where did you buy that turquoise and white polka dot notebook? I used to have a dress made out of that same colors.

    • Rachel says:

      “Other Space”… your kids shoes that somehow ended up in the laundry room when they should be in the closet, you know, stuff that is misplaced but not something you’re looking to part with

  122. I mentioned I was doing the challenge on my blog but I didn’t provide a link back to your page. I think I will write a post about how my progress has come along. So far the kitchen is completed.

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