Creating a Home Mail Center

We may not be sending handwritten letters to our friends anymore, but there’s always something still in the mailbox.  I wanted to give you three tips on how to create a home mail processing center.

1. Assign a home for incoming mail.  Whether it’s the corner of the table in the hallway or a paper tray on your kitchen counter, you need a specific, designated spot for the mail once it comes into your home.  Nothing else lives in that spot. Whether you process your mail daily, weekly, or whenever you get around to it, at least you know ALL the mail is right there waiting for you.

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Get your unwanted medicines out before April 27th

April 27, 2013, is the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day! That makes this month a great time to clean your medicine cabinets.

Place anything that has expired or is no longer needed in a separate bag for proper disposal. Pills that you no longer use but that haven’t expired can be donated to some non-profit clinics for patients in need. Since not all clinics accept medicines, I recommend calling before bringing over your donations.

Expired medicines and ones that can’t be donated should be destroyed so they can’t be found and misused. Unfortunately, the old advice to crush and throw them out or flush them down the drain can lead to these powerful chemicals contaminating our water. The Office of Diversion Control (part of the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration) sponsors National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day to help ensure old medicines are responsibly destroyed. The annual Take-Back Day falls on Saturday, April 27, from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm. Click here to enter your zip code to find the nearest location to drop off medications for safe disposal.

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Spring Organizing Tips

Happy Spring! The calendar tells us it’s upon us, even though there’s still a bit of snow on the ground. However, I did spotted a robin on my walk the other day. I get inspired by spring, the bright yellow daffodils and crocus, the chirping peepers, the fuzzy pussy willows, and the return of the song birds. It encourages me to start something new and freshen up my space. What about you? If so, I’d like to share a few spring organizing tips:

1. While you’re getting out your spring and summer cloths purge those items that you didn’t wear last year and any items that are a bit too snug. Donate to a local charity or look into a consignment shop.

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Does your space need a tune-up?

I suppose even a professional organizer can become stuck in a rut. A couple months ago I tried to stuff some unruly plastic bags back inside themselves under a deep kitchen cabinet. Suddenly, I asked myself why on earth I had not purchased a plastic bag sleeve? Then I asked myself why this imaginary bag sleeve was not hanging on the inside of my kitchen cabinet?

This solution, while so simple and intuitive, seems to have evaded me for the first year I have lived in my apartment. The irony is that in a client’s house I would have seen the same issue a while ago and made the proper storage suggestion. Why did it take so long? Even organizers can get stuck in a rut. We all do it. We are used to using our space a particular way. We are accustomed to viewing it a certain way. This means that every space, even one belonging to an organizer, needs a tune-up every once in a while.

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