Don’t Forget Your Purse

from fololia

For many of you, the only time you empty your purse/wallet/tote is to dump it out searching for a lost item.  We recommend making it more of a priority to clean out and organize your purse.  At the end of each week make it a habit to empty everything out and put things back where they belong.  Take receipts out and either file them or shred them.  Put only essential items back  You might also consider a purse organizer that will allow you to conveniently transfer items from purse to purse.

photo credit © JackF – Fotolia.com

Help Organizing My Daughter’s Room

kids bedroom

Question:

My daughter, age 10, needs some major help in her room. Her small space is so messy and unorganized. If we get her room into decent shape, it doesn’t take her long to wreck it. What’s the best way to begin and how can we keep it organized once we’re done?
Answer:

Parents often set up an organizing system that makes sense to them, but it may not be meaningful to the child.  If the system is difficult to understand or does not fit their preferences, it will not be successfully used by the child.  Be sure to include your daughter in the organizing process so that she both understands it and takes some ownership.

The biggest problem I see with most children’s rooms is that they are just too full of stuff.  When children have so much stuff that they struggle when putting it away, it makes cleaning up less likely.  Be sure the drawers and closets are not overflowing and that there is enough space for everything.
The key is to make it super easy to put stuff away.  Store like things with like (based upon the child’s version of similar categories), with plenty of empty space for easy clean up.

Think in terms of active versus archive.  Move out anything that is simply being stored in the room long-term (archive). Box up the sentimental, outgrown things and store them elsewhere. Only the most used items (active) should occupy the “prime real estate” in her room.

Finally, understand that it takes discipline and leadership by example. You have to walk the talk in your space too.  Keep expectations realistic and avoid making her room a battleground.  Try for a few minutes a day of maintenance, and congratulate even very small victories!

Becca Clark – www.convenientlyorganized.com

 

Paper Proud

fotolia

Technology is a wonderful thing that can help you in so many ways to get organized and be more productive.  But it seems there is a huge push to move towards all things digital no matter what, while some of us are still lovers of all things paper.  If you are a “paper person” that is ok.  If you are a “digital person” that is ok. We recommend you do what is most comfortable and effective for you.  It is ok to be paper proud and hold fast to the old tradition of paper magazines/newspapers, paper calendars, paper receipts, paper files, paper bills or whatever you prefer.  Don’t feel pressured to go digital unless you want to.

photo credit © fotek – Fotolia.com

Increase Your Productivity

feb 10.14

We mistakenly often think that if we just “power through” a task, taking no breaks, we will get the task done faster.  But the opposite is really true.  To better increase your productivity it is a good idea to take a break.  Fresh air is a good idea, and if you can take even 15 minutes to exercise you will receive even more benefits.  So remember to take a break and even stop to smell the flowers- you will thank yourself later.

Updating the Closet

closet

Question:

We are living in a small house and want to move baby into her own room. Because we lack storage closets, half of the closet in the baby’s room is used for dad’s clothes. While we have the baby’s toys in another area of the house, the room needs to hold all of the baby’s clothes, shoes, jackets, diapering needs and stuffed animals. Working with what we have, what do you recommend?

Answer:

1. Sort and Purge

Start by sorting through everything. Have three bins at the ready- garbage, donations, and one for things that need to leave the room. As you sort, put the baby’s clothes into categories- wears now, too small, and too big.

2. Location

This is where the planning comes into play. Based on your photo of the room, I recommend adding an additional shelf to the top of the closet and use it to store the file box and things you rarely access. On the original closet shelf I would put the bulk purchase of diapers and wipes for easy access. Since it appears you have already removed one closet door, remove the left closet door as well.

Purchase an additional hanging bar to increase your hanging space and put baby’s hanging outfits there. I would use the left side of the closet for baby’s clothes so that dad can still have his clothes on the right side.

3. Containerize

In the dresser you have four drawers. Starting at the top drawer:

* Socks, tights, leg warmers and bibs

* Onesies, play clothes

* Outfits (folded together)

* Hats, sweaters, mittens

Use a hanging organizer on the back of the door to hold all baby shoes.

For the clothes that are too large for baby to wear right now, purchase a plastic tote with a lid. Place clothes in there with the largest sizes at the bottom. Label the outside of the tote. You can also use ribbon to bundle the like sizes together and label each bundle.

Purchase a toy hammock for the stuffed animals. Rotate them out two at a time for the baby to play with.

4. Maintain

As your baby grows, remove clothes that are too small as you notice them. Have a donation bag in your home at all times. Before shopping for more clothes, check your plastic tote for clothes that can be brought out and worn. Purge the toy hammock regularly or those stuffed animals will quickly outgrow the space!

Natalie Conrad  http:///www.organizedhabits.com

Photo courtesy of http://www.organizedliving.com

 

 

Paper- Keep it or Toss it?

from fotolia

Can’t decide if you should to keep or toss/shred that paperwork?  Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is it still timely and accurate?
  • Do I need to take any action on it?
  • Is it a duplicate?
  • Do I have a specific purpose for it?
  • Would it be difficult to obtain again if I needed it?
  • Are there tax, legal or policy guidelines that could help me decide what to do?
  • What is the worst thing that can happen if I toss/shred it?
photo credit © Discovod – Fotolia.com

Lunch Planning Kit (closed)

kitchen giveaway

For most of you it is back to school time and making lunches will be a top priority for work and school.  We want to help make that process easier with our lunch planning give-away!  And because we will be giving you food containers, we have included our video on just how to organize your plastic containers- you’re welcome.

How to Enter:

At the bottom of this post is a Rafflecopter form.  Simply use your Facebook or email address to enter. (or click here if reading in your email:http://www.gettingorganizedmagazine.com/?p=4088 )

Details:

  • The prize package is (1) Rubbermaid water bottle, (1) Rubbermaid Lunch blox kit, (1) Supermarket smarty, (1) copy of Get Organized- Get Revitalized
  • No purchase necessary
  • Available for US and International residents
  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Winners have 2 days to respond by email or another winner will be chosen
  • The Rafflecopter program will randomly select the winner
  • There is a timer on the Rafflecopter form that tells you how much time is left for the giveaway
  • This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook.  We hereby release Facebook of any liability

kitchen giveaway

 

Watch now:

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Not a winner?  Here are links to the prizes in the give-away:

Rubbermaid Lunch Blox:  http://amzn.to/1oXsxyR

Rubbermaid Water Bottle: http://amzn.to/VE3bPC

Supermarket Smarty: http://amzn.to/1tiYSWm

Get Organized: Get Revitalized: http://amzn.to/1oXsTpb

Make a Note

from fotolia

We often handle our paperwork more than we should because we don’t know what to do with it, or have forgotten why we kept it in the first place.  Ideally, you should take action immediately, but if that is not possible- make a note on the paper or file folder with a sticky note.  There are all kinds of great notes, tabs and flags you can use to mark it.  And be sure to date the paper/note.

Daily Deal Websites

daily deal websites

Question: I love the “Deal of the Day” sites, but can never seem to keep my vouchers and emails organized.  Do you have any tips for helping me keep track of my online discounts?

Answer: Because there’s usually a short time frame to purchase the deals, you’ll want to set a designated time to sort through the lot.  I suggest not letting them build up by doing a daily digest first thing in the morning or before leaving the office at night.  This is a quick task that shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes.  Aim for this folder to be empty at the end of every day so that it’s fresh and inviting for next day’s delivery of deals.

Let’s say you bought something that you decided you couldn’t live without–but now what?!  First and foremost, take a look at the expiration date and put a date to redeem reminder at least one month before the cut-off date in whichever calendar you are using.  Since most folks cash in their vouchers at the very beginning and end of a deal time period, you’ll be giving yourself a little wiggle room just in case the business runs out of that item or overbooks.

Even if the date is written in your calendar, it doesn’t always ensure that you’ll put the deal to use.  Almost half of all purchased deals never get redeemed, usually due to the wicked combination of forgetfulness and busy schedules.  It’s imperative to have some form of accountability so that your money isn’t going down the drain.  You can take an extra step and set up event reminders through sites like Google, so that you book—and use, the deal before it expires.

Most businesses require a printed coupon to exchange for the service or good that was purchased.  It’s helpful to create a file folder in your email program for these types of deals.  That way, you can easily find and print your ‘date night for 2′ coupon when you need it.

By Beth Zeigler

www.bneato.com

 

 

Time for a Closet Clean-Out

from fotolia

You might have heard the sage advice:  “If you haven’t worn it in a year- get rid of it.”  The change of seasons is a good time to go through your clothes and purge.  Even if you don’t rotate your seasonal clothes, now is a good time to review your clothes.

  • If they fit and are in good shape and still in style- keep them
  • If they no longer fit- donate them
  • If they need mending- take them in now, or decide to donate/toss them
  • If they are in bad condition- toss them

Other options for your clothing might be:

  • Take them to a consignment store
  • Sell them on eBay or Craigslist
  • Have a clothing swap party with your friends
  • Donate them to a charity or non-profit such as Dress for Success