Category: home organization (5)

It’s almost time to send kids back to school and with that transition comes a change in routine at home. The start of the school year is always a busy time as everyone readjusts and works back into a school-year schedule. For many families, this requires additional planning with schedule changes to accommodate homework, sports and other extracurricular activities.

Back to SchoolBefore you find yourself in the thick of it, spend a little time looking ahead at your family calendar and identify ways to make this change smoother. If you’re a family that will be on-the-go a lot after school, perhaps weekly meal-planning and cooking on the weekends could be a game changer for you. For those of you who anticipate busy afternoons at home juggling homework, dinner prep and other house demands, maybe a snack station would take something off your plate.

Then there’s the paperwork that comes with school – and we’re not talking about homework! For those of you with one or more in grade school or higher, you know backpacks stuffed with papers, notifications and such are headed your way! Create a space to manage these before they become counter clutter. Search “organize school papers” on Pinterest and you’ll get more ideas that you’ll know what to do with! And while you’re at it, make a plan for special papers you want to hang onto throughout the year.

Evaluate your home as a whole. If you can set some time aside to tidy drawers, closets, your refrigerator, pantry and garage, you’ll quickly find yourself in a more organized space. We’re not suggesting a huge spring clean here, but you’ll be amazed how much clutter accumulates over summer! Even a few minutes spent in each area of the home can go a long way toward a fresh start to the school year. We wish you and your kiddos a great 2016-17!

For more back-to-school and home organization tips, visit our Get Organized board on Pinterest!

school organizationSchool’s out for summer! For those of you with students at home, this means you have just been inundated with all the school materials recently sent home. Here are a few ideas to help you weed through things and get organized and on with your summer fun!

File Your Favorites:  Go through special papers from the year with your children and decide which items they want to keep. Depending on what you have, buy a folder or storage box for each child, label it for the year and tuck it away.

Laurie gets a tub for each of her kids at the beginning of the school year for papers and marks it at the end of the year before storing in their basement. Whether it’s a folder, box or tub, this is a good spot to keep report cards and conference notes, as well as any awards and memorabilia. Everything will be kept together by grade, which will make it easier to find later!

Reuse, Recycle:  As for leftover school supplies, can any items be set aside for next year? If not, can you use the supplies for summer art projects? You might also consider donating items that are in good condition to a local charity. From there, recycle what’s left and trash items that can’t be repurposed.

The key here is to set aside some time to tackle this project soon and get it out of the way before it becomes clutter! It won’t take long and it’s also a good excuse to spend some one-on-one time with your kids reviewing the year before moving on to summer and the grade ahead. Here’s to a great summer for all!

Students across the metro are starting back to school this week and next. This period of transition can be hectic as families transition from summer schedules to routines of school, homework and extracurricular activities. Here are a few suggestions to help make this time of year a little easier around your home.

Plan Ahead for Peace of Mind

Afternoons and evenings are busy, but any time you can devote to preparing for the next day will make a smoother morning for everyone. Layout clothes and make lunches the night before when you can. If special items are needed for school or an extracurricular activity, set them aside before bed, too. This way in the morning, everyone can grab and go!

If your family cooks at home most nights, preparing a meal plan over the weekend and doing some prep work then can also ease some weeknight stress. Make your own plan, or steal one of these!

Keep a Calendar

Family calendars are key to home organization. Whether your family prefers a paper calendar or digital format doesn’t matter. It’s important to choose the style that fits your family best so everyone will use it as a resource. If a paper calendar is what you like, consider a large paper wall calendar or white board calendar that you can color code for each family member. If digital is your preference, here’s some good info to get a calendar started today.

Photo:  Lowe's

Photo: Lowe’s

Fake a Mudroom

Mudrooms are popular in new construction homes. If you don’t have a designated mudroom in your home, fake one! Carve out a bit of space in your garage, laundry room or other home entry and use it to serve as an organizing station for your family. Ideally, you’ll have space to hang backpacks and coats, and place shoes and other gear. If space permits, make a column or section for each family member. This would be a great place to post that family calendar. Check out these “command centers” on Pinterest!

What works for your family? Share your back-to-school tips in the comments below!

We’re halfway through the first month of 2014. Are you still sticking to your New Year’s Resolutions?

Home Maintenance Schedule

If being more organized was among your goals for the year, check out this calendar to help you care for your home. It provides guidance for how frequently home maintenance tasks need to be performed. Since your home is likely your largest investment, it’s smart to take steps to keep it in good order!

Use an app like BrightNest to help you remember these home management needs. This link also shows other handy apps for those DIY projects, like iHandyLevel, a free digital level, or Handy Man DIY, an app that allows you to enter room measurements to calculate how much paint, flooring or trim you need for your project.

Need more help? Consider registering with a free service like Home Spot to manage your home information. A service like this that can provide email alert maintenance and project reminders might be especially useful if you have multiple properties to keep track of. In addition to maintenance scheduling, it can store facts like parts, colors, services used and where you purchased materials to help you keep an ongoing record.

Here’s to a more organized 2014!

Photo Credit:  MSN

Photo Credit: MSN

An entire home nestled in 400 square feet. It’s difficult to imagine, but there are people who do it and love the minimalist lifestyle that goes with it. Some even predict going small will be the next big thing!

I do agree there is something to be said for the “less is more” philosophy for those of you who are getting ready to list or who have homes on the market. Part of successful home staging is to help clear the space of your personal items so that potential buyers can envision themselves in your space. The first and most essential step to this process is to declutter your home.

This can be a challenging task for homeowners. But try to think of it this way – this is temporary step and it can help get you to the next stage of your move quicker. Throw away the trash and donate things you don’t use any more. For the rest, consider boxing it up and storing it with friends or family while your home is on the market to give that clear, open feel buyers look for.

Even if you’re not in the processing of selling your home, adopting a decluttering schedule can help you keep your home organized and your space comfortable to enjoy. You can do a little every day, week, month or season – whatever works well for your household is the way to go! Hope you all have a great weekend!!