An “APPLE” a Day Keeps The Clutter Away

posted by Andrea | 02/18/2019

Apples have always been my favorite fruit… WAAAAAAAAAY back to when I was a very little girl. Even as a toddler, my mom said I loved apple juice so much she had to water it down. And as a young child, they would “hide” foods I didn’t like as much in applesauce.

Growing up, I packed my own lunches and often included 2 (sometimes 3) apples in my lunch every day! 

I’ve always had a love of all-things apple — even to this day! 

Over the years, we’ve joked about the fact that the old saying holds true for me, “An Apple A Day Keeps the Doctor Away” as I’ve been blessed with extremely good health for my entire life. 

More recently, however, a reader shared a clever little acronym with me — regarding APPLES and how they help her keep clutter under control. 

I’ve tweaked her acronym a bit… I hope it will be a simple reminder for you as you work to continually simplify and declutter your home and life.

A = always put things away.

If you put things away, they don’t sit out… if things don’t sit out, they aren’t clutter. 

If you put things away in the same place every time… you’ll always know where they are.

If everyone in your house knows where the “place” for the thing is… everyone will know where to find it again.

It sounds simple… because it IS simple. 

ALWAYS put your things away! 


P = purge!

If you don’t need it… purge it.

If you don’t want it… purge it.

If you don’t love it… purge it.

If it doesn’t fit or flatter you… purge it.

If it was a gift you didn’t want… purge it.

If you have’t used it in over a year… purge it.

If you have multiple of it… purge it. 

Less stuff means less to clean around, less to pick up, less to organize, less to manage, less to store, etc. etc.

If you want less clutter… PURGE!


P = piles. Keep them at bay.

Put dirty dishes straight into the dishwasher instead of leaving them on the counter. 

Put dirty clothes straight into the hamper instead of on the floor. 

Fold clean clothes and put them away instead of letting them sit in the clothes basket. 

Put books back on the shelf. 

Put toys back where they go. 

File, recycle, or trash all papers before they have a chance to pile up.

It’s surprising how quickly piles can, well… pile up, when we don’t stay on top of them.

Make it a goal to keep your piles to a minimum and enjoy all your extra clutter-free space! 


L = leave each space better than it was.

If I leave a room, I take something with me to bring to the next place I’m going. 

If I see trash, I throw it out. 

If I see a spill, I wipe it up (I often catch myself doing this in public restrooms!)

If there are pillows on the floor, I pick them up.

If the boots are strewn all over the rug, I straighten them up.

If the table is covered with art supplies, I put them away.

This has essentially been my “motto for life” for as long as I can remember… and it certainly helps to reduce clutter in my home and life. 

So often, it takes 30 to 60 extra seconds to do these quick and simple tasks… all of which will instantly help my spaces to look and feel less cluttered. 

The next time you leave a space, look for one thing you can do to leave it better than when you arrived. 


E = excuses no more!

But it was a gift… who cares! If you don’t want it, purge it.

But you might need it some day… but you might not.

But it’s still in perfect condition… great, donate it and let someone else enjoy it.

But it might be worth something… then sell it and get it out of your home. 

But I’m saving it for my kids and/or grandkids… give it to them now and let them decide if they want it or not.

I could talk for days on ALL the excuses I’ve heard over my last 10+ years helping others to get more organized and simplify their lives… seriously it’s ridiculous! 

If you want less clutter in your home, stop making excuses!


What do you think… can you remember APPLE? 

For those of you who are now hungry for delicious apples…

I’ll leave you with a few of my favorite apple recipes! 

YUM!! Which recipe will you try first! 

Nora, sucking on apples — way back when! 

Filed under: OrganizingHomePurgingMisc.

Leave a comment


  1. Lorrie


    Great article and helpful acronym! This reminds me that first time I read your blog (a few years ago), it was an article about your homemade applesauce (I asked a question about it and was thrilled that you answered!).

    You may have mentioned this elsewhere and I just can’t remember– but do you buy organic apples?


    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Lorrie!
    And no, I don’t buy organic apples from the store. I get all our apples from a local orchard from August through February — but again, I’m not sure if they are organic or not (probably not). From March through July, I buy Pink Lady apples from Aldi — they are our favorite!


  2. Jeanine


    Great acronym – I actually think this will be a big help as I declutter! I have loved your blog for many years and have told countless people about it. Also, Nora was beautiful then and even more beautiful today!


    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks SO much Jeanine! I will pass your compliments along to Nora as well 🙂


  3. Shan


    Great! I will try your APPLE a day and see how far it gets me. Thank you, Andrea!!


    Andrea Reply:

    just remember — even a little progress is better than nothing at all!


  4. Natalia


    I’m currently going thru my digital clutter and for a moment, when I saw the title, I was wondering if you’ll be talking about your computter
    Great post!


    Andrea Reply:

    no probably not! Although I do love my Apple devices! Happy decluttering!!


  5. Linda Dantonio


    I like it!!


  6. Christina


    I love this! Such a fun way to remember easy steps to keeping organized.


    Andrea Reply:

    I know — it is pretty easy to remember! And whenever I eat an apple or applesauce (which is daily) I’ll think of these steps now!