Archive for the Blog Category

Find Your Starting Point: Before and After Garage

Early in my career I had a client “Jane” that really provided insight into how a lack of organizational systems in the home can affect a family financially, physically, emotionally and mentally. Neither Jane nor her husband “John” had grown up with in organized homes and as adults, they both had different organizational issues. Four young children and irregular work schedules further exacerbated  the  problem.    Jane and John wanted to get organized but couldn’t find a starting point. They were overwhelmed and stressed with the process. It didn’t help that the disorganization aggravated health issues in the family. When

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Update Your Preferences to Get Organized!

What progress have you made with your resolution? As January comes to a close, many struggle with their resolve to get organized. In truth, most people have already abandoned any attempt to forge a path ahead. If this is the case,  a little self examination is in order. Try Updating Your Preferences! When you join a site or sign up for a new organization, you fill out your preferences for what you want. Do you want to learn information about events? Get alerts for sales and deals? Receive newsletters? Options are available to you and periodically you can go back

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Confessions of a Christmas Cranky-pants

Confessions of a Christmas Cranky-pants

I love Christmas! I love Christmas Eve too. Watching my family give and receive gifts, over -eating delicious food and enjoying all this warmth and festivity in my beautifully decorated home is the best! But the doing it part… not so much, actually… not at all. I don’t like shopping or wrapping, I don’t like the decorating, and I’m not too crazy about cooking and baking anymore either. I especially don’t like the pressure of having it all done on time. Forgive my crankiness… I wasn’t always like this, quite the opposite really. Stories of my Black Friday maneuvers are

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New Year Resolution or Whatever Gets You Organizing

Have you heard?! Intentions and Affirmations are the new Goals and Resolutions. That’s cool. Whatever your method; change = good. Change keeps you alert and excited and creates “change muscle memory,” useful for when change is vital (adaptability.) Language and concepts matter. As a busy mom, aching for a sense of control, I decided to run my home as a lean mean home-making machine. The phrase was mantra-like catchy and the concept vivid. I wasn’t longing for June Cleaver perfect. I wanted a clean and tidy home, food on the table at regular intervals, and the ability to get kids

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August Greeting

I hope you are enjoying the waning days of summer. Whether you are using them to squeeze in the last ounce of summer fun or preparing your home and family for the fall changes just ahead, the upcoming weeks  generally involve new purchases. With back-to-school shopping underway, the Severna Park Voice devoted a full page urging locals to shop within their community and for readers to “put away their Amazon Prime account”. Author Larry Sales admitted his sometimes use of Amazon Prime, re-committed to shopping locally, and asked his readers to do the same.  Here, here, Larry! I am with you!

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Terry on: Marie Kondo

Terry on: Marie Kondo

Marie Kondo, author of the book The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up, has tapped into the American public’s interest in a most unusual way. How can a book about home organization be a New York Times #1 best seller, have magazine writers experimenting with new organizing methods to understand the “life-changing “effects,” and have organizers all over the country in a lather on the NAPO (National Association of Professional Organizers) list serve? Yes, professional organizers are not happy with Marie. I read “Magic” last fall and felt a response was in order myself. But not until I saw post after

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Productivity: It’s All in Your Head

Counting down to daylight savings time with the hope of getting more done? Our daily challenge is to maximize productivity. But how? More light helps, but the amount of hours and energy in the day are finite. Rather than resort to multi-tasking, resulting in neither task done optimally, try thinking in terms of multi-purpose activites to make the most of your day. Go mindless- a great way to both relax and get something done is to incorporate daily pick-up time into your routine. Skip any anger or resentment. Own it! (Acceptance is key to the success of this transformation.) Then begin

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The Oops List- Top Five Over-looked Systems in the Home

The Oops (wish I had set this up when I moved in) List: On-going Project Place – Rather than keeping supplies for active projects in the areas they are being worked on, which can be unsafe or interfere with daily living, keep all project supplies in one container (if practical) and have a home for that container in an out of the way place, the same place…always. Donation Zone- Clothes, housewares, and kids stuff are constantly cycling out of our lives and our homes (or they should be.) The likelihood of this happening increases greatly if “Donation” has a home. Stash a

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Back to Organized

There are the ultra-organized, those who keep all of their systems running smoothly throughout the summer, and there are the rest of us. We let stuff pile up in the garage, mud room or the kitchen counters in order to make the most out of summertime (or do nothing at all.) Piles are part of the summer organization plan. This works for us because we know that when fall arrives we’ll press the restart button and get control of the house again. Here are a few tips for those who let a little more stack up than they planned and are

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Talk About Full

Full Definition-1. Filled to capacity  – holding as much or as many as possible (Encarta Dictionary) _____________________________ I’m feeling generous today. I am about to share with you a lesson, that if embraced, could put me out of business. Here goes: React to “Full.”  This super-secret systems-maintenance mantra can lead you to a life of organization only dreamed of through the pages of Real Simple magazine. Here’s how it works: 1. Define “Full”- Create a limit to what a container is to hold. A wastebasket is full when items reach the top. A dresser drawer is full at 2/3 of the way

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Get More Done

  I’m not a fan of multi-tasking. Putting on mascara while driving or waiting at the light is not safe or smart. But multi-purpose activities are a great way to accomplish multiple goals in less time. Fitday.com calculates “vacuuming for 30 minutes burns about 90 calories, the same amount you’d burn in 15 minutes of kick boxing.”  Getting housework done while burning calories makes sense in our busy lives. Some other multi-purpose activities are listening to a book or educational material while driving. Combine rest with brainstorming by keeping a note-pad nearby when you shut your eyes. Combine social activities with task accomplishment

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