Sunday, August 26, 2012

Getting Ready for School!

School starts tomorrow and we've been doing a few things around the house to get ready.  The other day, I had both kids clear off their desks completely and wipe them down.  Now they're ready for their homework, at least in terms of a space to quietly work on it!  We also worked on cleaning their rooms.  I don't want to have to look at messy rooms all day while they're at school because I'll be tempted to clean and purge them while they're gone, which isn't a bad idea anyway.  But I would like them to be part of getting rid of their excess stuff. 

Today, we're putting together a little lunch/snack station in the kitchen.  Since I put them through Self Sufficiency Boot Camp over the summer, I've discovered they're quite capable of making their own lunches (as well as being proficient at many other skills they've been hiding from me).  So, we're going to put the things they need in one place so they can just toss them into their lunch boxes and go.  We'll make a spot in the fridge for cold items they'll need too.  My plan is to prep as much as we can for the week on Sunday so that the mornings don't require a lot of choices and thought.

Here's to all the kids and Moms for the new school year.  Cheers!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Decluttering While the Kids Are In School

Summer break is just about over as the kids return to school next Monday.  As much as I'm going to miss them (for the first week maybe) I'm looking forward to having some uninterrupted chunks of time to tackle things around the house.  I want to declutter some closets, drawers and shelves, and purge some stuff that's taking up space.  Plus there are a few cleaning chores I've been putting off such as wiping down the kitchen cabinets.  Personally, I'd rather declutter and toss things out than clean anything!  Creating space is much more visible and rewarding than dusting or scrubbing.  When we had our carpets cleaned over the summer, the rooms looked so big and spacious without so much stuff in them!  So, that's my intention, to create more space via less stuff.  I'll keep you posted!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Giving Our Christmas Gifts a Home

Today's mission: The kids and I are putting all the Christmas gifts away, finding them a home. In the process, even though we purged stuff before Christmas, we're finding that we need to let go of more to make room for the new stuff. Then, we can take down the tree and decorations this weekend and reclaim our living room!

Monday, December 26, 2011

2012 Weekly Planner

I just ran into Barnes & Noble today to pick up my annual weekly planner on clearance. This is still the best one I've found for my method of organizing my daily/weekly "to do" lists and scheduling appointments etc.

Here's how I do it:

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Ball Claw - Storing and Displaying Sports Balls

I was recently contacted by the Ball Claw company regarding their product. I had not seen it before but was quite impressed by the design.

Do you remember those old fashioned bathtubs where the foot of the tub looks like a claw holding onto a ball? Well, there you have it! Only, this is a claw that mounts to your wall to hold sports balls, including basketballs, volleyballs, soccer balls and footballs.

This product would work great in your garage, basement, or other sporting goods storage area. But it does more than that. It's also a great way to display special sports ball memorabilia. Think of your "man cave" with balls from your favorite sport accenting the room in a neat and tidy manner, preserving your sports balls.

Here is a picture of how the basketball version works. The plastic claws allow you to insert and remove the ball for easy storage and display.

Remember, there is also a version for footballs and one for volleyballs/soccer balls.

Check out their website for more information and pictures at

You can also find The Ball Claw in The Container Store or online at (or They retail for approximately $11.99 per claw.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Don't Organize Clutter

In a recent magazine there was a little blurb about decorating and organizing. The magazine said "hide your clutter in nifty boxes".

Now, what's wrong with this?

Clutter is clutter, and you don't organize clutter! You declutter, purge and make room for the things you love and use and want to keep. You don't put all your junk in pretty boxes where they may never be looked at again. Pretty boxes or not, they still take up your valuable living space.

Instead, you should store your valued belongings in these "nifty boxes". Label them appropriately so you can easily find your memorabilia, papers, shoes, etc.

I'm just saying....

Garage Organizing Project - Status Update

We have been working on finishing our garage for quite some time now, like a couple years. My husband got it all nicely insulated and then the project came to a halt. It simply wasn't feasible for him to do the drywall all by himself because of skill and mostly because I would have nagged at him constantly for spending every weekend in the garage to finish it! So he hired someone to drywall the garage last month. They did the project in a day and a half! We'd still be at it if we hadn't done that. Especially since the ceiling of the garage is a major puzzle of triangles and strange shapes.

We have spent four weekends working in our garage. One to prepare it for the drywall folks, emptying the place out and prepping it.

The second weekend we started painting it and hooking up the washer and dryer which I was without for 8 days. (For a person who does a load of laundry a day on most days, this was hard for me.) But everything is back together and that wall looks fabulous.

The third weekend we finished painting the loft area and all the rest of the walls. That was a long weekend, but it made the garage look wonderful. We even got some of the new shelving up on the walls. It was getting very exciting to start to put things back in an organized fashion! Plus, it was supposed to rain so we had to haul everything back into the garage regardless.

The fourth weekend we put up the rest of the shelves and put away most of our belongings. It's so nice compared to before. However, it's also a challenge because we need to find new homes for everything. We get to decide what stays and what goes, and which shelf everything will live on. It's nice to work with a clean slate.

Today the UPS truck delivered the new shelves I ordered for the garage to put my stockpile of food on. The shelves have wheels so I can move it out of the way of the furnace area if it should need to be looked at. I love it! It's so nice to have all my stuff on one nice tall shelf and be easy to see and easy to get to. My previous shelves were too small and were toppling with boxes. I also know now that my stockpile cannot exceed my space allowed. That's a basic organizing principle anyway. You only have so much space, fill it appropriately, don't over fill it! That goes for closets, garages, and houses in general. Live within your space!

There are just a few more things we need to tidy up and give a home and then I can post pictures of the new garage! I'm so excited about this! Plus, I should be able to park my van in the garage again after that. Woohoo!