Too many tutus

I was shopping for baby presents and came across a cute book aimed at 1st graders, Fancy Nancy: Too Many Tutus, by Jane O’Connor. It caught my attention because it focused on tackling the overabundance of a particular favorite item.

Nancy is a young dancer who can’t fit new dance outfits into her stuffed closet. Over the course of the book, she learns to let go of some beloved, but outgrown, worn out and duplicate tutus in order to make room for the new ones. The book also includes a gentle lesson about sharing with friends and a younger sibling. read more

Everyday Orgnaizing

Janine Cavanaugh, CPO®Upon returning home from getting my hair cut, I realized how many little things I organized. I can name 10 steps I took:

1. Hung up my keys
2. Hung up my coat
3. Put my gloves and hat away
4. Took of my boots and put them on the mat
5. Put my pocketbook away
6. Took my check book out of my pocketbook and put it back where it belongs
7. Put my book away (I brought a book to read at the hairdressers.)
8. Wrote my next hair appointment in my datebook
9. Tossed the hair appointment notice
10. Collected the mail and put it in it’s “to sort” location (I won’t go into the steps I took to process the mail. That’s a whole other blog entry.) read more

Why not to clean up?

At a recent networking event I was talking to an acquaintance about the work I do. I mentioned that I encourage my clients not to clean up their spaces before I arrive. She gave me a horrified look.

It brought back childhood memories of my mother telling me to clean my bedroom before the cleaning lady came. I never understood the point of cleaning my room so it would get cleaned by someone else. There is a family disagreement about why. My mother told me it was so I would have an easier time finding my favorite things later, but my sister remembers being told that it was so that the cleaner would have more time to do deep cleaning. I assume that part of the reason was to lessen the embarrassment of the mess before the cleaning person could see it. read more

Yard Sales

Selling what you no longer want or need is one way of bringing in a bit of extra cash, so long as you know what you’re in for. Yard Sales are a lot of work. If you want to give it a try here are my top 5 tips:

1. Spread the Word – if no one comes, you won’t be selling a thing. List your sale locally, both on line and in print. Share the date with friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers.
2. Price to sell – remember people are looking for bargains. Group things together by price and have a colored sticker code. This beats having to print up or write up price tickets.
3. Get a permit – some towns require a yard sale permit. You don’t want to have to pay a fine, if your town requires a permit, and you don’t have one. Check with your town hall before you plan a yard sale.
4. Donate after the sale – establish the rule that nothing from the sale goes back into the house or garage. Instead pick a donation location before the sale and set up a pick up date or drop off date.
5. Have cash on hand – make a trip to the bank before your sale so you’re prepared. Only accept cash as payment, and have plenty of change and singles to make for smoother transactions. read more

Create a Strategy for Meal Planning

Meal planning can be a challenge for many people. Do you start to think about dinner when it’s time to eat? By then, you don’t have any food on hand and don’t have time to go to the grocery store. Meal planning is a hurdle that you can tackle by planning in advance and sticking to a schedule.

I cook most nights for my husband and me. I’m a Lifetime Weight Watchers member so eating healthy is important to maintaining my goal weight. I also work full time and have many commitments outside of my work life. Below is my strategy for planning ahead so I have what I need on hand to cook a healthy meal when I get home. read more

Creating a first aid kit for college

When packing a student to live away at college, don’t forget to assemble a comprehensive first aid kit.  Think beyond ibuprofen and Band-Aids when creating this kit for a dorm room. On campus the Health Services are often not available 24 hours a day and some things can be handled easily if the right supplies are on hand. Students need more than the typical pre-packed first aid kit that contains only one or two doses of medications and a few bandages. Also when stocking your own first aid kit, you can ensure the medications are your preferred brands and have a longer shelf life by checking the expiration dates. read more

Organizing the Garage Doesn’t Have to Be Painful

Organizing a garage can seem like a daunting task, especially when the space has become a dumping ground for the family as it is often the gateway to our indoor living space. Before jumping in, plan ahead; what purpose should your garage serve?

  • To create an open and easy-to-utilize storage area for all outdoor activities?
  • Is it to have the ability to use the space as it was originally intended, to store the car(s)?
  • Or are you converting it to be a workshop?

Three Easy Steps for Organizing the Garage

1.  With your end goals in mind, create zones for your different types of items (Such as gardening, tools, toys etc.).

2.  Then create aisles, and keep them clear.

3.  Finally, get items off the floor for easy maintenance and cleaning, which will reduce the amount of dirt that gets into the house. read more

Simple Ideas to Organize a Craft Room

Creativity and organization go hand in hand.  How can you let your ideas come to fruition when you can’t find your glue or you are avoiding your craft room altogether?  Follow the six steps of organizing to give your creative space a fresh, new look.

Here are some crafty strategies to keep your creativity flowing. 

1.  When you complete a project, put away your tools and materials in their assigned spots so you know where to look for them later.

2.  Assign a spot for in-progress projects that will not get in your way as you function within the room, such as a flat surface away from your main work table. read more

Managing Your Mail

Most of us are drowning in paper these days. For many of us, a large piece of the paperwork puzzle is the stuff that just keeps coming – the mail! Don’t get me wrong, some mail is good, but if you’re like most people, you get more mail than you need or want. If you don’t have a good way to manage and maintain it, it will just keep piling up. Here are some tips to make your mail maintenance quick and easy.

  • Make time everyday to open and read the mail.
  • Open mail in one mail center area with all your tools and supplies.
  • Have a wastebasket, recycling bin, and shredder nearby to toss the mail in as you open it.
  • Make decisions as you open the mail…

Scan the contents of each piece and process it appropriately. Immediately: read more