Friday, October 21, 2011

Fall Organizing Home Check-List

Organizing is a necessary home maintenance activity so that home owners can live and function well, save money and reap all the benefits of organizing. Some regular seasonal maintenance I recommend is:

1. Clean out and take inventory of the pantry and freezer. Make sure food hasn't expired, move older dates to the front. This helps reduce over-buying, wasting of food, assists with meal preparation and gives a big psychological boost!

2. Clean out and analyze what is in the main coat closet / mud room. It is amazing sometimes what is thrown in there...especially if you have kids. If your closet and/or mud room area is large enough to accommodate multiple seasons than your organizing focuses on making sure everything is where it needs to be. Make sure everything fits, all objects have a home and are properly contained. If your space is small then you may have to organize your closet / mud room area for the seasons and put away out of season items that are still relevant.

3. Organize and Clean out Kids Rooms. I encourage all of my clients to do this for each season. The benefits are two-fold. The parent(s) benefit because they sort, organize and purge all clothes that don't fit and are left with clothes that do, and a quick visual of what needs to be purchased. All out-of-season clothes that may still fit are put away. There is also a visual of what needs to be purchased, hopefully on sale, in advance of the next season. The kids benefit because they are part of the process and are learning a vital, necessary life skill. Encourage them to help identify toys and objects they have aged out of and can let go to a charity. Also it is a good time to throw out items that are broken and make an assessment of anything in the room that needs to be fixed.

So now I may have made your fall home maintenance check list a little longer, but just as you seal up any drafts to be more comfortable, these organizing tasks will make your fall and winter season more enjoyable, comfortable and you'll save money too!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

International Walk to School Day!

What a picture perfect day we had for this year's International Walk to School Day! Though, we live so close to my daughter's elementary school (Belle View Elementary), and we really should be able to walk, it still requires a lot of planning, organization and good moods to pull it off. Since I'm an organizer and I am a proponent of doing everything that can possibly be done for the next day, the night before, there should be plenty of time in the morning to make walking to school a reality. However, what ends up happening is time evaporates in the morning and most mornings we are just making it out the door in time to get to school by driving.

So, it was a big deal for us to walk on Wednesday. Though we had prepared and the lunch was made, outfit laid out, hair style determined the night before, backpack packed the night before with everything except the lunch, I didn't account for a semi grumpy daughter, and a leisurely 6 year-old's pace. At a couple different points I had to cajole her to gallop like a pony, skip and race me so that we made it there in time. Who greeted us, but the school's P.E. teacher who was giving out stickers to all the children who walked. It still amazes me how much weight a sticker can carry. She was so proud of it and at dinner last night she said she wanted to walk to school everyday to collect the stickers. Who knew!

I wish that could happen so that we could both fit in exercise early in the day to get the endorphins working, help air quality and the environment by not driving, not have to deal with the Kiss and Ride line and just have some fun time together. I've realized due to logistics of my choppy work schedule, and another child who needs to take a bus to his school, we can't walk every day, but maybe shooting for once a week can be a start. And, guess what, the plan tomorrow is we are walking to school!