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Bag It
Morning Walk
Are you ready?
Powerless
Collectors' Items

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closet
excess
family command center, back to school
organizing
preparing
routines
shopping
Thanksgiving, tradition
time, time management, vacation
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everyday ORGANiZiNG

Bag It

If there’s one commonality I have found among all the people I have had the good fortune to work with, it has to be hands down, the number of bags they have accumulated. Handbags, canvas bags, duffle bags, grocery bags, backpacks, retail bags, beach bags, gift bags, lunch bags...
We’ve gone way beyond paper or plastic.
Plastic bags, mainly used for toting groceries, have long since been deemed environmentally unfriendly. Although some studies have shown, believe it or not, that a single-use plastic bag has a lower carbon footprint than a paper bag and is more ‘green’ than a cotton bag, when considering the impact the creation of such bags has on the environment.

Morning Walk

Every day, during my morning walk, and after my daily prayers are done, my mind is wide open to the random thoughts that come pouring in. Sometimes a song will arrive and get stuck. Like the needle on the record (for those of you old enough to know what I’m talking about, thank you) the few catchy lines of the song repeat over and over – until a new random thought arrives to kick the lyrics to the curb. Sometimes, something I see or hear triggers a connection to an organizing theme and provides the subject and fodder of an upcoming newsletter or blog.

Are you ready?

A recent and sudden change in a family member’s living arrangements, translated into a recent and sudden change in mine. Of course, this family member, who for the sake of privacy shall be named Alice, is always welcomed.  I would do whatever necessary to ensure a warm and welcoming environment, especially if the circumstances leading to this sudden change weren’t so good.

The guest bedroom was ready with furnishings so there was no problem in deciding where in the house Alice would stay and call home for a while.

Powerless

The recent Nor’easters plunged many New Englanders into the dark. The lights went out, along with the heat and hot water, the Internet, and phone service. We were left powerless.

Downed wires and fallen tress across roadways and on rooftops made for dangerous conditions and added to the prolonged toil of digging out in the hopes of getting back to normal quickly. The days stretched on endlessly for some, and promises of flipping the switch were only a dream away. We were at the mercy of utility workers, who no doubt were working feverishly around the clock, to identify the causes of the damage and restore the simple and everyday amenities we have come to take for granted.

Collectors' Items

Recently, I have found myself more and more working in the homes of people who may have hoarding disorder. I say people who ‘may have’ because I do not know of a confirmed diagnosis. Based on the volume of stuff and accumulations of categories of items saved, it sure does seem that way.

Just as often, though, I am working in a high-end home, apartment or condo and sorting through, shall we say, ‘excess’ stuff. Although the volume of belongings does not exactly fit the description or definition of hoarding, it can sometimes feel the same way.

A Tale of Two Closets


I recently worked with two clients whose closets couldn’t be more different. The contrast was remarkable. One closet was jam-packed with not an inch to spare, and by inch, I mean the smallest measurable increment known to man. The condition of quite a few pieces was poor – tattered and stained. Yet, these were hung next to luxury brand, high-end pieces, many new with the tags hanging on them, and in the client’s view were just as much an integral member of the wardrobe as any other piece. Every item seemed to hold the prize for the ‘I wear it all the time’ contest.

A Tradition of Thanks

My  husband introduced a tradition several years ago that he and I continue to celebrate every Thanksgiving morning. While the turkey is roasting, also his idea, we enjoy a champagne toast.  It's really more than a toast.  It's our time to talk about whatever current events are happening among our family and friends, plans for the holiday season that begins in earnest on this day, reflecting on the past year and what we hope to accomplish in the new year ahead.  Of course, giving thanks for all that we have no matter the circumstances, and remembering loved ones passed, is a part of our champagne conversation.

Take Command with a Family Command Center

Back to school.  Back to work.  Back to appointments.  Back to practices and games.  Back to fundraisers.  Back to field trips.  How will you keep it all straight?  A Family Command Center can hold all in the information your family needs to know and go.  Here are a few ideas to get you started.


10 Tips to Create a Family Command Center

  1. Choose an area of the house that is easily accessible to all family members.  A high traffic area, the ‘drop spot’, a kitchen counter, family room bookcase, entryway or home office desk are all good options.

What time is it?

These were words never spoken during a recent vacation shared with my husband - a vacation away from clocks, schedules, things that had to be done and at a certain time.  It was freeing, liberating.  Time took on new meaning and was meaningless.  We responded only to our desires of the moment.  When we were sleepy, we slept; when we were hungry we ate, when we were well-rested, we awoke; when we wanted more ice cream, we got more ice cream. What more could we ask for in a vacation?

Practicing What I Preach

It had to be done.  I knew it.  It was the right thing to do.  It’s what I would have advised someone else to do.  Get rid of them.
 
Sigh.
 
My most favorite boots, and dare I say my most favorite footwear had to go.  They had ripped,although I don’t know when or under what circumstances it happened, and they no longer held the value they once had. Truth be told, I purchased these beauties as a result of returning another pair I had received as a gift. So often in the past I have kept a gift just because it was a gift or I didn’t want to be ‘caught’ not wearing/using/displaying it.
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