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Showing posts from March, 2009

Organizing Inspiration - How to Cut Your Grocery Bill

I'm determined to cut down our grocery bill. I have done a lot of research and learned a few new tricks. Here are my grocery bill cutting tips:

1. Clip coupons, but don't use them right away.

2. The coupons you clip in today's paper will be on sale in 4-6 weeks. Use them then for huge savings. Sale price + coupon.

3. Buy items when they are on sale--even if you don't need them right now, but you know they are items you will consume--stock up.

4. Shop at stores that offer double coupons--although I haven't found one in Portland yet.

5. Shop at warehouse stores such as WinCo for huge savings--especially buying their generic brand vs. name brand. I have saved as much as $1 per item by purchasing generic over brand. When it comes to canned water chestnuts I can't taste the difference between generic and brand--so why spend the extra $1?

6. Keep a grocery price book of the items you buy regularly. Note the regular price and sale prices so you know when to buy at the lowes…

Why should you get organized?

Check out the following organizing statistics - courtesy of - they will knock your socks off!

80% of what we keep we never use.

23% of adults say they pay bills late (& thus incur fees) because they lose them.

An enterprise employing 1,000 knowledge workers wastes $48,000 per week, or nearly $2.5M per year, due to an inability to locate and retrieve information.

The document for a Boeing 747 weighs more than the plane itself.

We wear 20% of the clothes we own 80% of the time. The rest hangs there, just in case.

IKEA did a survey of customers in which 31% reported they were more satisfied after clearing out their closets than they were after sex.

Did you know...80% of what we file never gets looked at again!

Job stress is estimated to cost U.S. industry between $200 and $300 BILLION annually.

Are 18,000 sheets enough? Your four-drawer file cabinet, when full, holds 18,000 pages.

Getting rid of clutter eliminates 40% of housework in an average home.

80% of the clutter in homes …

Why do you do what you do?

I’m always curious how and why people are doing what they do. I recently met with my best friend growing up and she said her sister-in-law told her that you do what you do based on your first memory. She asked me what my first memory is. My first memory is I was three years old and I was in our home that was being built at the time and the tile layer, Hal, was laying tile in the front hall. I had a bag of jelly beans and it broke spilling all of the jelly beans on the floor. The tile layer started eating all of the black [licorice] jelly beans—my favorites. I remember screaming, "stop eating my jelly beans." Now, what that has to do with teaching others how to become organized or how to run a Professional Organizer business I’m not sure—other than maybe I should have had a better container for my jelly beans!

What is your first memory and how does it connect with what you do?

P.S. Licorice is my favorite candy.

Next, find out how and why I became a Professional Organiz…

Weekly Menu

I have a family size package (8) of porkchops and of chicken breasts that I bought super cheap and froze. Time to thaw and enjoy!

Monday - Chicken Curry with Chickpeas and Rice

Tuesday - Pork Chops with Orange Soy Glaze and Udon Noodles

Wednesday - Chicken Pot Pie

Thursday - Pork Chops with Mushroom Cream and Hazelnuts, Roasted Blooming Onion with Ranch Dip and Roasted Spaghetti Squash

Friday - Simple Pasta and Green Salad

Kids are away for Spring Break--that means lots of seafood on the menu next week because they don't like it, but I love it!

Saturday - Thai Red Curry Mussels and Soba Noodles

Sunday - Garlic Basil Shrimp

Organizing Your Craft Materials with WOW Factor

Tip: Sort your craft materials by color and place in clear jars and containers, such as those pictured here.

Ribbons were sorted by color, removed from their spools, and placed in large glass jars. Embellishments of various types were also sorted by color and placed in smaller glass jars and clear drawers.

Materials are not only organized and easily accessible, but also add a punch of color and WOW factor to the crafter's room.

Product of the Week-Doorknob Forget-Me-Not Organizers

I was planning to blog about this very product this week and Erin Doland beat me to it! I wish this product existed when I was growing up. I remember every morning my mother and father heading out the door and always, always, always searching for something--keys, wallet, book--you name it they couldn't find it! Now you know why I'm a professional organizer--survival!

If you struggle with remembering everything you need to take with you out the door each day, this is the product for you!

Effortless Organizing Solution – 5 Tips to an Organized Closet

Tip #1 - Take everything out of your closet so you have a clean slate. Consider installing a new closet system if yours is not functioning well (add double hanging rods or a system with adjustable shelves and rods). Paint the closet.

Tip #2 - If you haven't worn it in the last year or it doesn't fit, it’s time to let go of it. Make a game of it, for every two items you keep—let one go. This will reduce your wardrobe by one-third.

Tip #3 - We’re all trying to save money or find ways to make money. Instead of donating everything you are letting go of, consider taking your discards to a consignment shop. A fun idea is to have a “naked ladies” party—clothes swap with your girlfriends.

Tip #4 – After you have downsized your wardrobe, put your clothing back in your closet. Create an area or zone for each clothing type (shirts/blouses, pants, skirts, jackets) and then sort each zone (clothing type) by color. Then you will know where to put your clothing away.

Tip #5 - When you buy…

Organizing Habit #29

Pick a problem room and identify the “pinch point” – The pinch point is the one thing that prevents everything from running smoothly when it is not in order. So, if the laundry room is your problem area, look for the source of the problem (one big pile, no detergent, etc.) and tend to that first.

See it. Fix it! If the pinch point in your laundry room is clothing buildup because you’re out of detergent, then keep your soap out where you can see it. I keep my laundry soap in a glass cookie jar on top of my washing machine. Visual reminders help keep your necessary tasks top of mind, so they’ll be fixed faster.

Once you eliminate the pinch point, you’ll be amazed how quickly everything else falls into place.

Product of the Week

Tote Baskets – I love these tote baskets. I use them primarily in kitchen pantries and cabinets or bathroom cabinets to store and organize items that I don’t want to see and I want to be able to grab easily.

In the kitchen I use the large tote baskets to store and organize bags of snack chips, packages of pasta, rice, grains, hot cereals, baking products (flour, sugars), and root vegetables. I use the small tote baskets for snacks, teas, baking products (sprinkles, flavorings, cupcake liners, etc.), seasoning packets, and beverage packets to add to water.

In the bathroom, I use the large tote baskets to store cleaning supplies, tall bottles of shampoo, liquid soaps, and hair products. I use the small tote baskets to store makeup, bar soap, first aid items and medicines.

Each tote has a specific purpose of what it is storing and labeled accordingly.