Notes and Resources for Mom’s LIFE Facebook
Live Video- 4/27/20
Live Video- 4/27/20
Kelli J Gavin - Home & Life Organization
11 Things to Ditch NOW.
*Baby stuff and baby clothes. If you are done having kids. Pass them on to someone who needs them. Don’t hold on them for years and years. Yes, a special outfit or two, but not 6 bins.
*Greeting Cards. Pull out a special few. Super special occasions, or from people who you miss. I kept three for each kid from mom that have beautiful notes written in them in her beautiful script.
*DVDs, CDs, VHS Tapes. Come on now. We do have a bunch of dvds and vhs tapes at my house because my special needs son loves them. But they also are kept in one location. When it comes to CDs, load them onto your cloud or iTunes or whatever you use and get rid of the stacks and free up the space.
*Books. Ah. Books. My downfall. When we can meet face to face again, consider a book swap. Donate to your local library or your neighborhood Little Free Library. Donate kids books to your local schools. Magazines are great for local nursing homes and care facilities and for the library magazine exchange bins.
*Unused craft supplies. Now I know some of you accidentally just audibly gasped and were tempted to shut this live video off when I said that. But be real with yourself. You know what you like and what you use. You will not use it all. Donate donate donate. Sell what you can and part with what remains untouched.
*Damaged dishes and ridiculous stained Tupperware and mismatched lids. You don’t have to keep the dish just because it matches your set. Set it free. And get rid of the excess, the junk- the unused and broken stuff from your cabinet.
*Jewelry and Accessories. Okay. I am 44. I lived through the 90s where huge necklaces and bulky earrings and shoulder pads were amazing. Part with what is not longer in style and with what you no longer wear. Our tastes change. And that is okay. You don’t have to keep the excess just because you spent money on it at one point in time.
*Forgotten candles. Do you have a shelf full or bin? Throw them out. Do it now. Don’t tell me you plan on burning it down and using the glass canister it came in. Most old candles smell and once again, get real with yourself. You don’t need 17 of them.
*Empty journals and office supplies. WHAT? I swear I just heard more gasping and 6 people unfriended me. You have too much. It takes up too much space. You will never need 1894 rubber bands. I am a writer and I will never use the 352 unused notebooks and journals. 128 boxes of Ticonderoga pencils. Give them to your local school. Donate. Donate. Donate.
*Travel toiletries. You don’t need them and you only use the hand lotion. Donate them to the local shelter or food shelves as they also need hygiene and toiletry items.
*Mugs. Come on now. Go to your kitchen. Count those mugs. Not just the glass ones, but the mugs you bring with you in the car. -You have too many. You know what ones are your favorite. Keep those, now box up the rest. - Okay. Now box up a few more.
Examples of what you can do in 5, 10 or 30 minutes.
What can you do in 5 minutes?
You can make an appointment.
You can buy a present online.
You can sort and throw away junk mail.
Answer two brief emails.
Respond to 4 text messages.
What can you do in 10 minutes?
You can make two phone calls as long as you don’t get a Chatty Cathy on the line like me.
You can dust your bedroom.
You can select 25 books you no longer need.
You can clear off your desktop.
You can review your calendar for the week.
What can you do in 30 minutes?
You can balance your paycheck.
You can pay bills.
You can meal plan for two weeks.
You can clear out three drawers and get rid of what is old or not worn.
When you are focusing on organizational projects in your home, it is very important to be aware of time bandits. The notorious habits that rob you of your time and take you away from the matter at hand.
*Taking on more tasks than you can possibly handle.
*Losing sight of your current priorities.
*Not having the tools or supplies on hand that you will need before you start a task.
*Being interrupted and sidetracked.
*Leaving unfinished tasks for a later unspecified date.
*Watching television or Netflix.
*Compulsively checking your phone or social media platforms.
These things steal your attention and sometimes disable you from being able to complete your important tasks of the day.
24 great fast tips about home organization from One Good Thing.
1. Make Your Bed-Straighten out the sheets, fluff those pillows, and smooth out your duvet. It takes about 30 seconds, and it makes a huge difference in how clean and organized your bedroom feels.
2. Pick Up Clothes-Go around the room (or around the house, if you’re feeling ambitious) and pick up all the clothes off the floor. Put them in your hamper if they’re dirty, or hang them up if they’re still pretty clean.
3. Put Laundry Away-Take a few minutes to put your clean, folded laundry in the drawers and closets where it belongs.
4. Put Shoes Away- Take the mountain of shoes in the entryway or laundry room and put them away.
5. Corral The Remotes-Does anyone else seem to have a million remote controls floating around their living room? Spend a few minutes gathering them all together and placing them in a pretty box, bin, or tray. (And make sure to inform the family that all remotes will be stored there from now on, so they know where to put the remotes when they’re done with them.)
6. Start A Clutter Collection System-Take a few minutes to address problem areas or items in your home. Anywhere that mess seems to accumulate can be a good candidate. Then put something in place to help control the mess. For instance, if you have throw blankets that tend to get left out, put a basket somewhere in the living room. You can toss the blankets into the basket each night before you head off to bed.
7. Establish A Donation Area-Set aside an area or container in your house for items that you want to donate. It can be a shelf, a box, or a corner of a closet. It’ll help encourage everyone to help with your decluttering efforts, and it’ll keep the clutter hidden until you’re ready to make the trip to Goodwill.
8. Organize Your Cords-Have an unsightly mess of cords around your desk? Grab some Velcro, zip ties, rubber bands, or Command hooks and sort that mess out. It only takes a few minutes, and you’ll feel so much better once it’s done.
9. Store a Collection-Do you have a stash of candles, water bottles, board games, or other items just sitting around somewhere? Find a place to keep them organized, like an over-the-door organizer, a dedicated shelf, or a storage container.
10. Declutter Your Desk-Take a few minutes and get rid of some of the clutter on or around your desk. Put pens and pencils in a pen cup, recycle unneeded paper, and straighten up stacks of books or papers.
11. Hang Up Hooks-Need more places to hang stuff like scarves, purses, or cords? Take some time to hang up a few adhesive hooks! They’re easy to install and will definitely help control the clutter around your house.
12. Clean Out Your Fridge-Take out anything in your fridge that is expired, past its prime, or smelling less than fresh. The main culprits are usually produce and leftovers, so check those first.
13. Toss Out Stale Food-Go through your pantry and toss out anything that’s stale or past its expiration date.
14. Clear Out A Junk Drawer-If you have a junk drawer in your house, take a few minutes to empty it out. Group like items together, and toss out anything you don’t need or recognize. Corral similar items together in small plastic containers or drawer organizers before putting them back in the drawer.
15. Clear Out Unused Mugs- We talked about mugs!- If you have a kitchen cupboard that’s full to bursting of mugs, travel mugs, or other drink cups, take a minute to clear some of them out. Start with anything you haven’t used in the last 6 months, then adjust your limit if necessary. Set them aside in a box to donate when you have the time.
16. Organize Food Containers-Organize your collection of food storage containers. Make sure there’s a lid for every container, and set aside borrowed containers to return to their owners. Before placing your containers back in the cupboard or drawer, stack them up by size to make them as space-efficient as possible.
17. Label Your Waste Bins-If you’re always getting your trash bins or recycling bins mixed up, take a few minutes to label them. You can use paper labels or a label maker, then post the labels where they’re plainly visible. Not only will the labels help you, but it will help guests and other family members too.
18. Clear Out Cosmetics-Go through all your cosmetics, toiletries, and other personal care items. Toss out anything you don’t use anymore, and anything that’s past its expiration date.
19. Organize Your Wallet/Purse-Dump out the contents of your wallet or purse. Toss out any garbage, old receipts, and empty chap stick tubes. Put away any random items that have found their way in too. Once you’ve cleared out all the junk, put the important stuff back in an organized fashion. I keep a zippered small bag that contains meds, band aids, ointments and lotions, my iPod mini, and my eye drops. That way I don’t have to dig and the contents of my purse remain semi organized.
20. Rearrange Your Closet-Rearrange the clothes in your closet using a more organized system. I like to put like with like, so I hang all my skirts together, my sweaters together, etc. But if you like to hang by color or occasion, that’s perfectly fine. Use whatever system makes the most sense to you. Just take the time to make sure all your clothes are hung up and put away.
21. Organize Your Jewelry-Use trays to keep your jewelry organized, or hang it from an organizer or hanger. Anything that gets it up off your counter or dresser. I have a client who uses a window frame with chicken wire to hang all her jewelry from the wall. Another uses three overturned seashells to house all of her jewelry.
22. Reduce Paper Clutter-It seems like there are always piles of mail, bills, and other stray papers lying around the house. Piles like these can make any house feel cluttered. Sort through the stacks and keep anything crucial. The rest can be shredded and recycled. Check out the flylady.com for lots of excellent ideas about paper clutter.
23. Clear Out Coupons-If you have a place that you store coupons and other offers, go through it. Toss out any expired ones, then put the remaining coupons in an organizer of some sort. Stick it in your glove compartment in your car for safe keeping. You’ll be more likely to remember to use the coupons in the future if you keep them there!
24. Recycle Junk Mail-Take all of your old newspapers, junk mail, flyers, etc. and put them in the recycling bin.
I want to share with you four great books that I have found super helpful and my clients also really like them.
The first one is Life Management for Busy Women- Living out God’s Plan with Passion and Purpose. It is by Elizabeth George who also wrote A Woman After God’s Own Heart. This great book addresses God’s guidelines for managing the seven major areas of your life, (spiritual, body, finances, friendships, relationships and more.) It also discusses practical disciplines for managing your life more efficiently and effectively. And there are quite a few ideas on how to improve your schedule and your life right away.
The second book is called Clutter Control- Putting Your Home on a Diet by Jeff Campbell of The Clean Team. This perfect book addresses all areas of your home and enables the reader to focus on everything that they aren’t enjoying because of the state of their home. It helps break it down in manageable steps so that your home not only becomes more livable, but it also enables you to manage it, keep the clutter under control and helps you to start to enjoy life again.
The third book I would like to mention is Organizing from the Inside Out by Julie Morgenstern. She has written a lot of books and approaches organization for everyone. Whether you have struggled with organization your entire life and now you are ready to get serious about it. Or you used to be organized and you are trying to reclaim your home. Or even if you are basically organized but you are looking for new ways or systems to help you be more efficient.
The 4th book is my favorite and it is called The Personal Organizing Workbook - Solutions for a Simpler, Easier Life by Meryl Starr.
And of course, the internet is full of amazing information. I love The Fly Lady as she is funny, down to earth, and provides practical organization help.
Thank you on behalf of Home & Life Organization.