Being organized isn't about getting rid of everything you own. It's not about having rigid rules that can never be altered. It just means being able to find what you need, when you need it!
I am excited to share the news that I have completed the training to become a licensed Sunday Basket® Workshop provider!
The Sunday Basket® is a great system to keep track of your papers, errands, and schedule. In this 90-minute workshop, I will provide you with the materials and instruction to get your Sunday Basket started. You get to bring any size basket, box or bin full of your actionable/to-do papers to get organized.
The registration fee is only $30. Click the link below to get all the details and sign up!
I look forward to seeing you soon at a workshop!
Do you have any routines in your life? Maybe it is a morning routine, before-bed routine, or cleaning routine that you do every day? Kids thrive on them, but adults need them too. Call them what you like, do you actually carry out these routines? I excel at creating and planning routines for my life. The HAVING routines part is nailed down. I believe 100% that they can save you time and the mental stress of trying to remember what you need to do. The execution is where things can fall apart...the DOING the routine part. This is definitely not the the fun part. Anybody else struggle with this? Luckily, every day is a new chance to start over fresh. So, that is what I am doing this morning!
Write down what you need to do on a piece of paper, keep it in your phone, on your calendar, wherever you will see it and be reminded. What are some of the tasks in your routine? Do you like to write them down? Please share for inspiration!
Who is ready to play Organizing Bingo?
It doesn't have to take hours to get your space organized. Take 15 minutes and try to get BINGO! You choose which three-in-a-row it takes to win. Spend just 5 minutes on a category, and then move on to the next. With 15 minutes spent, who needs a Free Space?!
Share in the comments which three categories you tackled and we can all yell BINGO along with you!!
December is the time of year that I choose my new calendar/planner for the upcoming year. I'm sure you will not be surprised to hear that I get really happy looking through all the options and selecting a fresh, new planner. I love the potential and world of possibilities waiting inside them. Am I alone here? Does anyone else out there love choosing a calendar/planner for the new year? Or, maybe this is the year that you would like to give a paper calendar a try for the first time. I can help with that. 😃
Simply Organized NW is having its first giveaway!!! I found a beautiful 2018 Recollections Creative Year 12 Month Spiral Planner that I would like to give away to one interested reader. It ticks many boxes that I look for in a calendar/planner...functional, fun decoration, and small enough in size to be portable. Check out the photos below!
If you would like to be entered into the drawing to win this lovely planner, take ONE or more of the following actions, and let me know in the comments that you're interested!
1), share this post
2), tag a friend
3) comment with what you look for in a paper calendar
The winner's name will be randomly chosen on Friday, December 15th at 11am and notified via Facebook message. I will happily mail this planner out to the lucky winner next Monday!
I'm looking forward to hearing from YOU!
Many times I have shown the desktop file box that lives on my kitchen counter. But, what if piling papers is your jam? You definitely should use the system that works best for you. I want to share a new product that I recently discovered. It is called the Pendaflex PileSmart. I am trying this out in the paper bin that I keep on my desk. Why not have the ease of a pile of papers, but still have categories to help you quickly find what you need. You can also label the sleeves with the categories that work for your life. If you are a "piler" maybe this product could help save you some time and aggravation! Reply in the comments with a 1 if you may give this system a try, or 2 if you are a happy filer.
Happy Wednesday! Here is a question for you...
Do you have a drop zone? I'm talking about a command center, or the place you put all the stuff in your hands when you walk in the front door? Where is this place? Did you intentionally choose it, or was it happenstance?
With a little focused planning this space could become your best time-saver! This spot should be convenient, easily accessible (visualize dropping things right in), and have room for all your essentials. Things that might live here include a basket for papers/mail, a bowl or hook for keys, a phone charger, and a spot for your workbag or purse. Once you have chosen this zone, you will always know where to find these items when you need them.
Here is a pic of my own drop zone. This spot is at the end of my kitchen counter. It is a straight shot from the garage or front door. :)
Where is your drop zone? Please share in the comments below!
Nobody loves making their bed. At least, not anyone I've ever met. We see it as a time-consuming nuisance first thing in the morning. We ask our kids to do it. They hate it too. So, what's the point? Why should you ever bother making your bed? You are only going to (hopefully) return to it at the end of the day.
Here are a few reasons why making your bed can be a very good thing...
1) It sets a tone of success and accomplishment for your day when your feet first hit the floor. Check! One thing done already! You may now proceed kicking butt and taking names. :-)
2) When the bed is made, you are less likely to leave other items lying around which don't belong there. I'm talking about unfolded laundry and clothes tried on before leaving the house.
3) A tidy bed is a little bit of cozy luxury that welcomes you when you are ready to rest at the end of the day. You can choose if it is simple and straightforward, or mounded with decorative pillows.
Are any of these reasons compelling for you to try making your bed? Please share in the comments if you are a bed maker, or why you don't.
When things begin piling up in our spaces, it is often because they do not have a designated home. I am issuing a challenge to any and all who choose to accept it: Find three items today that are lying around in your home, and choose where they will live. It will be so much easier to put things away and tidy up when you know where it goes. I would love to hear about the items you find...and where they live now! Bonus points for sharing a photo in the comments! Let's all inspire each other. :-D😀
Have you ever tried meal planning? It may sound intimidating and time-consuming. But it doesn't have to be. It can be a very effective tool for staying organized, saving time and money all week long! If you are looking for motivation, check out the photos below. This is my lunch meal prep that I completed on Sunday morning. This is the spicy, cheesy chorizo casserole that my husband and I will eat for lunches all week long! 😋
Interested in learning more? I would love to chat with you if you want more info about meal prepping or other ways to get organized! Share your favorite favorite lunch in the comments.
Have you ever thought that you just can't get organized because you've tried in the past without success? Fear not!! There are multitudes of methods for organizing homes and reducing clutter. The key is to find the one that works best for YOU. Don't be afraid to try new ways if something is not working. Sometimes, several methods used together will be the best approach. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
1) Timer tidy: set a timer for 5-10 minutes and remove clutter (a great family activity!).
2) Rewards: a clean and orderly house on Saturday means a day at the park.
3) Morning minutes: spend 10 minutes each morning readying the home for the day. (this also works well done in the evening for those with more energy at night!)
4) Empty spaces: remember it is OK to have empty spaces in your home.
5) Trading: when you bring a new item into the home, decide which item could be traded out so you can avoid accumulating clutter.
6) Planning: before bringing anything into the home, plan where it will be used and stored.
The challenge for today is to try out one of these methods that may be new to you. Share in the comments which number you could try out today! I like #1, because you have an excuse to stop when it goes off. :-)
Have you ever thought about keeping your budget organized? Organizing your life is about more than sorting your old shoes. It is about taking control of your finances as well. It is crucial to know how you are spending your money...and why. An organized budget will help lead you one step closer to an organized life.
Budgeting is basically organizing categories and expenses. The initial budgeting process is the most challenging, but is well worth it. Look at your expenses and categorize them. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
-Needs: mortgage, rent, insurance, groceries, gas
-Wants: entertainment, dining out, cable
-Savings: 401k, vacation, home improvement
Once you have accounted for how your money is being spent now, it will be much easier to see how you can start to make any changes.
Let's chat about goals...
Creating goals for organizing your space is an essential key to success. You can start small and work up to those larger, more daunting tasks. Instead of setting one large goal of attaining an Organized Home, break up the organization into rooms, functions, or even closets or drawers. Goal setting might look something like this:
1. Organize bedroom closet and donate clothes that aren't worn to local shelter.
2. Sort through linen closet and mark sheets according to bed size.
3. Clean laundry room and install shelves.
4. Declutter home office.
5. Clean son's room, and help him donate unused toys to needy children.
Breaking down into manageable pieces the overwhelming task of organizing a living space is crucial for reaching your goals! Which goal will you tackle today? Please share the number in the comments below. Or reply with the one that works for you. :-)
Our patios, decks, and yards are extensions of our homes and can provide us with additional living spaces. Don't forget to organize these so that they can remain valuable additions to your home. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
1. Use weatherproof furniture so you don't have to bring it in and out according to the weather forecast.
2. Design a simple landscape that lets you use and maintain your property easily. The more items you place in a yard, the more items you have to mow and trim around.
3. Invest in outdoor storage containers for decks and patios. Smaller items can be stored in these for easy access.
Think about how you want to spend your time outside, and create a space that allows you to do just that. Now, enjoy!
Good morning! Is it back-to-school time where you are? Or maybe you are just looking to stay on top of your work tasks. Either way, let's chat about organizing your assignments.
Assignments aren't just for those attending school. We are given work assignments, parenting assignments, or volunteer assignments. Ensuring that you are ready for your task takes a just a little bit of planning and organizing to make the grade.
1.Keep a list of all assignments and tasks in a notebook, folder, or spreadsheet.
2. Subdivide the list into categories each week (i.e. tasks to be completed at home or work assignments), including due dates! Having the deadline in front of you will help ensure everything gets done.
3. Add to the list the supplies you will need in order to complete the task. If you are in charge of helping with the neighborhood picnic, this list might include food, garbage cans, signs-up sheets, or park benches.
4. Determine which supplies you already have and which ones are still needed.
5. Identify who, if anyone, can help you complete the task.
6. Bonus step: Make notes of challenges along the way and outcomes. This will help for future tasks.
Finally, sit back and admire a job well done!
My family and I have just returned from a 3-week road trip coast to coast from Washington state all the way to Maine. We had a crazy adventure including 10 days in an RV (1st time!) and many nights in a variety of hotels. In the coming days, I would love to share a few organizing strategies that worked (and didn't!), and some observations from the trip. Stay tuned!
For today, I thought you might like to see a great example of organizing done well "in the wild". I took this photo at a complimentary breakfast bar in an Ohio hotel.
For children or adults, desks can play important roles in everyday activities. Design your desk to function for the work you do, and the work will become easier. Here are some steps to get started....
**Empty all drawers and surfaces.
**Wash down the desk with an appropriate cleaner.
**Sort items by function and get rid of anything that is broken or no longer needed.
**Use drawer dividers to contain items returning to the desk.
**Store items in the desk that are actually used at the desk. 😉
**Hang shelves above or near the desk for storing extra items.
**Hang a magnet, or cork board to post important notes to get them off of the desk top.
**Use Velcro straps to reduce cord tangles.
What desk will you tackle today? Please share in the comments below!
My family and I are preparing for a summer roadtrip! I am thinking a lot about where to keep everything that will need to come with us in the rv. These look like some great ideas.
Now let's switch it up....please share any rv tips you have for me in the comments below! 😀
Hang your shelves upside down so that the brackets automatically create built-in compartments. This is such a simple, smart solution. Has anyone tried this in their closet, or other space? Please share in the comments!
Good morning! Let's organize playrooms for more fun!
Organizing playrooms or play spaces for children can increase the amount of fun had, and reduce the clutter and mess. Here are a few ideas which may save your sanity.
**Use birthdays and holidays as opportunities to sort toys with kids. Broken toys can be tossed, and ones that are no longer used can be donated.
**Take a section of a wall and use chalkboard paint for hours of fun without much space required. Or, simply use an easel (as in the photo below).
**Hang canvas shoe storage bags on the back of the door so kids can easily store and find small toys.
**Designate areas for different activities.
**Use simple shelving instead of large toy boxes (bottomless mysteries) and use smaller bins so finding specific toys is easier.
**Make sure all furniture, storage units, or flooring you use are easy to clean.
Check out the photos below to see how a space can be transformed!
Create Living Rooms You Can Live With!
Living rooms are spaces in our home where we often spend the most time, and leave the most clutter behind. Keep living rooms livable, and ready for guests, by employing a few organizational strategies.
**Use a magazine rack to reduce clutter on tables.
**Use baskets under tables for extra storage of things like books, puzzles or games.
**Invest in a sturdy cabinet or bookshelf for music and movies. If you are short on space, get rid of the jewel cases for music and instead use a music binder, or basket.
**If you have kids, use a container with a lid for stashing toys that are left behind. You can even find footstools with hidden compartments for this job.
**Reduce tabletop clutter of multitudes of framed photos by using a digital photo frame. Or, displaying just a few at a time and swapping them occasionally will really showcase your favorites.
Do you use any of these organizing methods in your home? Will you give one these a try? Please share in the comments!
Design a Dining Room for Dual Purposes!
Dining rooms are often used not only for dining, but for doing homework, reading the paper, sorting and paying bills, or many other tasks where a table is desired. Keep your dining room functional for dining, as well as these other activities with a few simple ideas.
-Incorporate a small dresser into the room. Use one or two drawers for table cloths and napkins. The others can be used for items like pens, pencils, and scissors that might be used frequently at the table.
-If you read the paper at the table, keep a decorative recycling basket nearby to avoid stacks of paper on the floor.
-If the dining room doubles as a homework zone, hang decorative pegs for backpacks. Or keep a homework cart nearby that can be easily rolled out of sight.
-Keep a small trash can nearby by for all of those activities other than dining that leave a mess.
What activities occur in your dining room? Do you use any of these tips to stay organized? Please share in the comments!
Organize the Pantry and Save Time!
Busy lives don't always allow us to have leisurely meal preparations. Having an organized pantry will go a long way to saving you prep time in the kitchen. Begin with a clean pantry, then arrange the items with a few helpful hints in mind.
-Sort items into categories, just as you find in the grocery store (canned goods, breakfast items, snacks, etc.).
-Place the tallest items in the back for easy visibility and access.
-Put those items used most frequently at eye level.
-Use baskets or bins for loose items such as seasoning packets, or to keep like items together. This doesn't have to cost a ton of money. Dish pans from the dollar store can be a simple solution.
-Keep baking supplies together to save time (sugar, flour, baking soda, etc.).
-If you buy in bulk, use mason jars or clear containers with tight seals. Make sure to label the container with the purchase date or “use by” date.
What is your favorite way to contain food in your pantry? Please share in the comments below! And, let me know if you want to see pics of these strategies in action from my own pantry.
Home garages can become cluttered, dirty, and not very functional if we don't follow a few guidelines. Here are a few simple ideas you could try today.
**Use boxes, bins, hooks, and shelving to get items off of the garage floor.
**Utilize rafter space for storing less frequently used or seasonal items.
**If you are unsure of how far to pull a vehicle forward into the garage without hitting the lawnmower, take a thin rope and attach a tennis ball to the end. Hang it from the rafters at a level where the windshield just touches it when you pull forward the proper distance. Or, you can use a point on the wall that you can see through one of your vehicle windows when you are parked in the right place. I use our electrical panel door as my focal point.
**Use painter's tape to create colorful lines on the garage floor to signify kids' parking spaces for their bikes.
**Create categories and store like items together. These zones will make it simple to find what you need, and to store new items that you bring into the space.
Check out some of these ideas in action in the transformation below!
I've heard that it is officially spring...somewhere. In honor of the sunshine we are having this morning, lets talk about growing great garden storage spaces.
Gardening and lawn maintenance can be much easier when you take time to organize your tools and supplies. Here are a few ideas to get you started in your space, be it a single shelf, or an entire potting shed.
-Use nails and hooks to hold tools such as trowels, rakes, and shovels. If you have a shed or garage available, install a piece of lattice or peg board for easier hook hanging.
-Use extra flower pots as storage space for pruners, gloves, or fertilizer sticks.
-Attach a leather or canvas tool belt to the outside of a bucket.
Use the tool pockets for gardening tools and the bucket to carry supplies such as kneeler pads or pots.
-When storing pots over the colder months, layer plastic or garbage bags between them to prevent them from sticking together.
Digging in the dirt will be even more fun when you have grown great garden storage spaces and can find all of the right tools and supplies. Happy playing in the dirt!!