It happens to the best of us...we get a bit overwhelmed or forget to put something away and then all of a sudden its like a tornado went through the house!  There is hope - and it doesn't take much to get into a routine of cleaning up.  Here's what the five-minute purge looks like:

1. Set the kitchen timer for five minutes.

2. Grab a medium-size garbage bag. You'll use this bag to throw things away or to drop them off at your charity of your choice, whichever makes more sense for the times you're purging.

3. Pick your target. Make sure to keep it small so you can be thorough. It's one drawer in the kitchen, one shelf of video tapes, the floor of the coat closet, etc.

4. Clear out anything you haven't used for the last six months to a year. Remember? You were supposed to have done this when you first cleaned your home. But a home is a living thing and what you felt you needed to keep yesterday, you may be able to let go of today. Now be ruthless. The more you get rid of, the longer you can wait before you revisit this area.

5. When the timer goes off, stop. If the bag is full, put it in the garbage (or in your car trunk so you can drop it off the next time you drive past a Goodwill or other charity). If the bag isn't full, put it with the garbage or recycling in preparation for tomorrow, when you'll surely fill it up in your next purge.

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