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Posted by Deborah Schilling on 5/4/2017

Imagine an area of your home that's particularly cluttered now, and then picture in your mind's eye how nice it would look if it was cleaned and organized. If you take a few seconds to visualize this scenario, it will feel like a breath of fresh air! For many people, a cluttered, disorganized living space or working environment tends to create mental clutter -- and that makes it nearly impossible to be at your best. On the other hand, when you create a plan to organize your storage space and get rid of household clutter, you're taking a major step toward enhancing your home and the way you feel about it. Although you may have a dozen or more areas that need to be organized, if you create a methodical plan to tackle one small area at a time, then the project is much more achievable and less overwhelming. The Outcome Is Worth The Effort If you've ever undertaken a task like this, you know how rewarding it can be to see the results. You'll also enjoy the feeling of pride that accompanies improving the look and feel of your home. When you've transformed chaos into a semblance of order, it can have a positive effect on your attitude and your self esteem. Although taking charge of household clutter is not a panacea for stress, it can be one of several improvements that make a big difference. Where to Begin You can infuse a feeling of fresh energy into your home by organizing and cleaning the following ten areas:

  1. Closets: Most homes have a ton of them and they're probably in a major state of disarray!
  2. Book shelves: If you have a library of books, then organizing them can dramatically improve the appearance of any room -- from living rooms and family rooms to bedrooms and home offices.
  3. Kitchen cabinets (Check expiration dates while you're organizing.)
  4. Bathroom cabinets and drawers (Refer to note in item #3.)
  5. Junk drawers: Virtually every home has them, and they usually consist of a combination of junk and treasures. In most cases, it's obvious what should be thrown away and what's worth saving.
  6. Garage and tool sheds: These areas are typically in desperate need of cleaning and organizing.
  7. Work bench: If tools, hardware, and supplies are haphazardly piled on top of each other or randomly strewn on your work bench, then finding what you need when you need it becomes increasingly frustrating and time consuming. Taking an hour or so to organize your work bench can make life a lot simpler and more productive.
  8. Spare bedrooms: In many people's homes, that area tends to become a repository for things that either need to be put away, given away, or thrown away.
  9. File cabinets: Being able to find important documents, information, and receipts depends on well organized and clearly labeled files. Ideally, that takes place on an ongoing basis, but if that's not happening, a semi-annual review of your filing system can help keep things in good order.
  10. Basements: Depending on how long you've lived in your house, this might be a project that needs to be spread out over a few days!
Involving members of your family in the cleanup plan can also make it move along faster and feel more like a team effort, rather than a solo undertaking. To avoid procrastination, start small and branch out from there. As the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu once said: "A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."





Posted by Deborah Schilling on 1/19/2017

What is it about cabinets that make them so difficult to keep organized? Despite our best efforts storage containers always seem to take over while baking ware get lost in the far back depths of corner cabinets. I’m here with X tips to keep your kitchen cabinets neat and tidy once and for all.

  1. Start with a major clear out to eliminate any unnecessary clutter. The kitchen is the easiest room in the house to build up excess stuff as it all seems so useful. However, in truth all those specialized gadgets and extra plates simply collect dust and make organizing more difficult.

  2. Give everything a place. By assigning each and every item in your kitchen cabinets a “home” you will be less likely to shove things away into drawers or into the back of cabinets. You will also be able to more effectively put the following tips to use as you will know exactly which solutions will work best for your belongings.

  3. Adding stacking shelves for plates and bowls adds extra storage to tall cabinets. Stacking shelves make the most of empty space without stacking plates a mile high and prevents having to pull from the bottom of a pile to grab a dinner plate.

  4. Add slide out organization to cabinets to create easy to reach access to the depths of cabinets without requiring a step ladder. They are easy to find at your local hardware or home goods store and easy to install on your own.

  5. Keep similar pantry items together in easy to grab bins. Think baking items together in one bin and spices in another. Matching bins placed on open shelves add a stylish touch to your home while clear containers allow you to see what is in each bin at a glance.

  6. Drawer dividers avoid the classic jumbled drawer of kitchen gadgets. Just as with pantry bins keeping like items in each section allows to easily find utensils at a glance. When shopping for dividers be sure to keep your utensils sizes and shapes in mind to find appropriately proportioned containers that will make the most of drawer space.

  7. Lazy susans in cabinets make it easy to find spices, canned goods and cooking oils with a quick spin of the fingertips. Keeping a lazy susan in the cabinet nearest your stove makes cooking an easier process.

  8. Alternatively, a spice rack on the inside of a cabinet adds storage space while putting cooking spices within arm's reach and puts the whole array at an eye’s glance. Again, this makes the most of vertical space to free up shelf space for other items.

  9. Hang mugs up on a spinning mug tree, mug rack or hooks under upper cabinets to make the most of vertical kitchen space, again, to free up precious shelf space. So often homeowners stuff their cabinets with mugs, unnecessarily monopolizing cabinet space.

  10. Invest in a matching food storage set that can nest easily. Better yet, look for the type where the lids snap together for an even easier storage solution. This also allows your food storage containers to be tucked away into one of the organizational bins from tip number four.

By making the most of vertical space and thinking outside the box when it comes to adding storage space to cabinets you can finally have organized cabinets that stay organized. To get the most out of these tips be sure to follow through on tip number one. Happy organizing!




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Deborah Schilling
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