Avoid the Cluttered Closet Trap

Organization tips to implement into your own closet to save space and keep things from becoming cluttered.

The Great Toy Challenge

Practical solutions and ideas that will hopefully leave you with some peace of mind when it comes to your little ones.

Closet Quick Tips

A few quick closet tips in no specific order to keep your closet refreshed and fun.

A Closet Transformed

This closet project was a great opportunity for the client to get rid of things she hasn't worn including shoes, clothing and bags!

Bathroom Closet Organization Tips

Just as any closet in your home can become cluttered up quickly your bathroom closets can certainly do the same.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Basement Got You Down in The Dumps?

I'm all about an inviting home. A place that your friends and family can walk into feeling comfortable and relaxed, as if they could stay the week. This goes beyond being tidy and organized. It also incorporates creating a space that's bright, peaceful and characteristic of your life and the things that make you happy. The one place in the home that seems to be the most challenging to keep warm and inviting is the basement. For those of us who have an unfinished basement, aka "the dungeon", it can turn into what I like to call the three D's...dark, dreary and a dump! The dump part is clearly because it becomes the best dumping ground for storage. Holiday decorations, memorabilia, camping equipment, toys and maybe even some unidentified items. Regardless of the mess it's still a part of your home, so taking the time to get it organized and cleaned up is the best way to feeling better about walking into your basement. A few tips and before afters of a basement that just needed some special attention to get it organized and clutter free! Remember at some point what you hide away in your basement you will need to find again!

Taking Inventory
  • My favorite part of organizing is ridding others of the things that they don't need! When tackling the basement create a throw away pile, donate pile or even a yard sale pile. Once the items are gone you would be amazed how much space you have opened up.  
Create Categories
  •  As you begin to sort through everything create categories for them. Sporting goods, holiday decorations, etc. By placing like items together it's easier to keep your basement from becoming unorganized in the future. 
Storage Ideas
  • Bins, crates, shelving and labels! Metal shelving is ideal in a basement in order to keep items elevated. It is a great inexpensive solution to keeping your things off the floor and they are a space saver. If you don't have metal shelving sturdy tables are another alternative. Labeling bins and crates is a must! By indicating what's inside each bin you are instantly saving time to look for things. 
Clean it Up!
  • Don't forget to dust, vacumn and sweep your basement on a regular basis, especially if your washer and dryer is located there. Not only do basements become very damp and dusty but they can have hidden dangers of mildew and mold. Take the time to wash concrete floors, vacumn carpeting and dust behind any appliances. 
~Before and Afters~

    This shelving unit held everything from board games to plant food!

    Disaster area!
    Summer items, holiday and not sure what else!

    After! Shelving unit now houses games and toys only, with top bins labeled.
    Beach gear together, ready to grab and go! 

    Floor space opened up, no caution tape needed!
    Holiday table
    Labeled bins for decorations
    If bins are located on the floor be sure they are items that can withstand damp areas
    Table now used for Fall decorations. Garbage bags are great to cover decorations to keep them from collecting dust.
    Paint supplies together 

    Let me know if you have any basement organizing challenges of your own, I'd love to hear your feedback!  Follow me on Twitter, or like this page on Facebook. If you are interested in a free consultation with help organizing a specific space in your home, contact me I'd love to help get you Organized For Life!


    Sunday, May 15, 2011

    Finding Your Balance and Why Rainy Days Never Get Me Down

    Busy- “engaged in some business; hard at work either habitually or only for the time being”.  Let’s go with the habitually busy, because it seems that’s the most realistic way to look at our lives. The common phrase I seem to hear every day is, “there just aren’t enough hours in the day.”  It seems the outdoor/indoor activities and commitments are endless, on top of balancing all of our other daily to dos. If you are looking at your calendar and asking yourself when you’re going to have time to fit in sleeping I’d say you need a moment to breathe. Being busy is great but you want to actually enjoy those busy moments, not feel rushed and stressed. If you have a second read these little tips on taking the steps to manage your time, and enjoy the moment. 

    • Don’t spread yourself too thin. There are only so many hours in the day, be realistic when it comes to your commitments. If you can’t fit it in then it’s okay to say no or re-schedule. Remember you are only one person.
    • Routine is important, especially when you have little ones. Stick to your routine but don’t be afraid to steer away from it. A couple of nights during the week plan a game or movie night after dinner. This will break the week up and get your mind off all the to dos!
    • "Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted". John Lennon was on to something with this one. If you decide to spend an entire day planting flowers, reading a book, cleaning the basement or watching a Seinfeld marathon you deserve it. The mental stress we put on ourselves daily can be eliminated by taking the time to enjoy the moment. More importantly the time was put aside for ourselves can clear our heads and give us the energy we need to get through the week.
    • “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once".  If you feel like everything is happening at once however... slow down! Take a moment to relax and realize you will get everything done, just not all in the same hour.
    • Your free time is probably so important to you because it can be rare. Be honest about the things in your life that you spend your extra time doing. Other than the everyday important commitments, like making a living, dive into your free time and see if it’s well spent doing the things you enjoy. If you really dread going to the gym everyday after work look into other ways to get exercise. Taking a minute to re-assess how we spend our time is so important to time management and our well being.
    Rain in the forecast to me is a good thing. Just like snow storms in the winter can be mother nature's way of saying stay in and relax, rainy days to me are an invitation to do the same. After all nature never hurries, but always seems to achieve her work. 

    Sunday, May 8, 2011

    On the Move? Get Started on the Right Foot!

    When the Boxes are gone
    And you’ve cleaned up the mess
    You’ll make a home of the house
    That was just an address ~

    You’re getting your first place, or moving into your brand new home. Maybe you’re relocating for your job and traveling across country. Whatever the reason for you to call a new place your home, look at it as a new beginning or a fresh start! With so many things to pack up, put away and get settled it can be easy to become overwhelmed. Here are a few tips and ideas to get your move started on the right foot.

    Rid yourself of the unnecessary
    You are anticipating your move, and it is right around the corner. You’re looking around saying to yourself how in the world did I accumulate so many…things? Time to take stock and evaluate what can stay and what can go. Give yourself a goal to tackle one room at a time. At least 6 weeks prior to the move will give you plenty of time to be ready. Create a throw away pile and a donation pile. Relieving your home of items that you can leave behind will prove to be a time saver while packing! Have a yard sale, as they say someone's trash is always another's treasure.

    Grab the Measuring Tape!
    Don’t assume that all your furniture will fit right through the door or up the stair well.  Take the opportunity to measure doorways, stairwells and the square footage of each room in your new home. Professional movers may be able to maneuver furniture well, there are times however when things are geometrically impossible to fit.

    Your moving checklist, things to cover prior to the move-
    To avoid scatter brain mode take a moment to collect your thoughts and create a list of things you will need to take care of prior to the move, along with your moving must haves.

    If using movers be sure everyone is on the same page as far as the start time, or any specific instructions you may need to know before they pull up.

    Contact the utility companies such as electric, gas and water at your old residence, being sure to notify them of your move date.

    Schedule utility turn on dates at your new residence at least one day prior to your official move in date.

    Don’t forget your address change! Typically it’s as simple as filling out a form at your local post office, and your state's Department of Motor Vehicles, which can also be done online.

    Get to know your new neighborhood. Find out specifics for trash and recycling pick-ups.

    A week before your move limit the amount of food items you purchase that can go sour.  Dry goods and canned items will hold up during a move but save the milk and diary items for when you arrive at your new home.

    If there are any cleaning items you may need prior to moving in make a list and be sure to take the time to run and get them.

    Your moving must haves -
    • Boxes/Bins- make sure they are strong and sturdy
    • Magic markers
    • Bubble wrap for fragile items
    • Newspaper and tissue
    • Containers with lids for toiletries
    • Packing tape

    Time-saving tips for the transition
    When you arrive in your new home you want the transition to be as smooth as possible. Most of the items in your home can be packed up prior to your move, like seasonal clothing, decorations, frames and china. Best practice is to pack up room by room. Label each box clearly and be sure to put like items together.

    As you begin to move in to your new home place the boxes in each room they are labeled for. Have your kitchen and bathroom unpacked first, the two rooms that you use the most! Unless you plan on having a dinner party and breaking out your china your everyday plates, utensils and cups should be unpacked and placed in their new homes.  Be sure to have your bed made as well. At the end of the day you will need some rest! Leave the finishing touches such as hanging art, putting up family pictures and other decor as a day at a time task.

    Remember for every minute spent in preparation and organization, an hour is earned! 

    Ideas? Questions? Follow me on twitter or drop me a line! I love to hear feedback and am always looking for ways to help others get organized for life! 



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