Archive for Organization


Action File Video

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One of my most asked questions is how to set up an Action File. I decided to create a video so you can see it.



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Organizing your clothes closet

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This Saturday in the declutter calendar, it’s time to organize the bedroom closet.

Here is a how to for you:

1. Declutter what doesn’t look good on you, doesn’t fit, you don’t like, or is not practical for your lifestyle. Put in a pile things that need mending or tailoring. I have a 1920′s tiny closet for my husband and I, making us pare down our wardrobe to what actually gets worn.

2. Remove out of season clothes and put in boxes under the bed, in the basement, in a guest closet.

3. Remove everything from the floor of the closet. Vacuum. What really needs to be put back there for you? What do you use regularly? And what can be put in a less accessible closet or storage space. What can you declutter?

4. Remove everything from the shelves. Dust. What really needs to be put back there for you? What do you use regularly? And what can be put in a less accessible closet or storage space. What can you declutter?

5. Install hooks or closet organizers to meet your needs. The Container Store has good options. Slimline hangers give you more room. But, closet organizers are not an excuse to keep clutter. We have no closet organizers, but people with bigger closets might use them. A valet hook is great for clothes for tomorrow or a bathrobe. Use closet organizers that you can take out and move. Permanent closet re-designs don’t leave room for change.

6. Organize your clothes by your personality. Some options:

  • by color
  • by clothes type
  • by work/play/dress
  • by outfit
  • I organize by type, then put the freshly washed on the left of the group, so I can see what is getting worn and what isn’t.

7. Using all the same color and type of hanger makes the closet look neater.

8. Hang scarves, ties, etc. inside the closet or on specialized hangers. Other scarf organization ideas.

9. Use clear containers to store the other things you put in your closet so you can find them.

10. Decide on a system to organize shoes.

11. Sweaters should be folded so they don’t lose shape.

12. Know what colors and styles flatter you so you can create a cohesive wardrobe and not buy impulsively.

Categories : Declutter, Organization
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Routines are boring

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When I talk about a daily rhythm or routine, I often hear people say they hate routine. Routines are boring (said in a whiny teenage type voice). I used to be one of those people.

Then I realized that life is chaotic enough. Life pops up all the time and scatters plans. For most of us the beginning of the day and the end of the day are mostly ours to do with what we want for our families and ourselves. I prefer to start and end the day as peacefully as possible nowadays.

I enjoy waking up about the same time every day, feeding the cat, brushing my teeth and using my water pik, exercising, doing quiet time, eating breakfast, doing my cleaning home care and taking care of my personal grooming. I feel more calm and centered. I’ve prepared my mind, body, soul and home for the day ahead.

Even if the rest of the day falls apart at least I have had a good morning.

Sometimes even this routine gets knocked off by cat barf, having to drive someone somewhere, or a sickness. But, most days I can at least do most of my morning rhythm.

I love ending the day calmly as well. After dinner, doing chores as a family, setting out clothes and packing parts of lunches. Right before bed doing some journaling and reading to settle down my mind.

Rhythms don’t have to be long to be effective at creating more peace in your home. In fact, when you are starting, having only three morning items and three evening items can keep you from getting overwhelmed. Build in new habits slowly. Are you ready to try a more peaceful routine, (peaceful, not boring)?

If you want some accountability and help in creating routines and habits, my three-week Habits and Rhythms class starts March 10.

Habits class


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Connecting to What You Really Want

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First Published at Meditate Like a Girl.

Is your resolution list the same as last year? The same as five years ago? Perhaps your goals aren’t what you really want.

Instead of looking towards what we want, we are resolute in what we should want.  “I will lose 20 pounds.”  I will wake up at 5:45 am every day. I will save money. I will declutter every inch of my home.

Instead of losing weight, maybe what you really want is to give your soul a place to experience life or have your insides match your outside.

It may not be an organized home you are longing for. It may be a feeling of peace or even self-compassion with yourself when you can’t get it all done.

Maybe instead of getting out of debt, you uncover why you are in debt in the first place. What longing might be hiding under over-spending?

What if you really didn’t want to learn a foreign language? Maybe voice lessons would light you up instead.

Maybe this year you don’t want to do anything extra at all. You might not want to go on a self-improvement kick. This might be the year you simplify or make peace with the present or learn to love yourself as you are.

So put down the January magazines that will tell you all you need to do to be the perfect you in 2014. Hold off on reading blogs. Wait to buy those self-help books from Amazon.  Don’t read the "Before You Die" books.

Before you put store in other people’s words about what you should do this year, tune into yourself.

This isn’t a race to see who can get their insights first. You don’t have to get it all right now.  Plans from your soul usually come out in bits and pieces, not a huge epiphany. Keep getting quiet until you can hear what your soul is longing for. Then continue every day.

What do you really desire? What don’t you want to have to do anymore? What do you want to feel? What are you tired of feeling? What sounds fun? What makes you smile? What acts of service does your heart want? What sounds scary and exciting at the same time?

Only you and your soul can answer these questions.  So, get quiet.

Categories : Planning
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Valentine’s Day Countdown

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A reminder of my Valentine’s Day Planning post that starts Feb 1.

Categories : Planning, Relationships
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Habit of the Month: Making the Bed

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Habit of the Month

This is a habit that I ran away from for years. Why make the bad when you are getting back in it that night?

But, once I started doing it, I realized how much cleaner the room looked. The bed is a huge part of the bedroom. When it’s messy, the whole room looks messy.

Plus, it was more soothing when I went to bed. No more yanking the bedcovers right as I went to bed, too tired to get them correct.

When I timed it, it came out to about 30 seconds. That was all. With an extra two seconds to smile at your made bed when you are done.


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Replacing Photos

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I received a question from a reader on what to do with old photos, when you receive new ones. Especially when they are darling grandchildren. Isn’t it disloyal to get rid of the old ones?

  • I know one thing we do in our family is the old picture goes behind the new picture. So there may be several pictures in one frame.
  • For things like Christmas card pictures, the new ones can go on the fridge and the old ones can go into albums or  Marcia’s card system.
  • I love this Wall Gallery.
  • You can scan them into your computer. Then send the other ones off to other family members. Or toss them.

All you grandparents out there – what do you do?

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Less Planning, More Present

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I used to be a huge planner. I would have big annual goals, then quarterly, then monthly, then weekly.

The main problem with that is 1) Things always change. Life happens. 2) I would get bored at looking at the same goals all the time.

I know plenty of people that thrive on that, but I’m not one of them.

Instead I have been looking at making the present better. What can I do today to have better character? What can I do today to be healthier? What can I do today to help others in my business? What can I do today to have fun and feel fantastic?

I am tired of only looking to the future. I want to have a great day, today. This means a lot of flowing with what is happening and checking in with myself.

I still have goals and notice progress regularly. But they are shorter termed goals.

What can you do today, to make your present better?


(If you thrive on more planning, you can see my Simple Annual Planning Workbook.)

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Two Question Annual Planning

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Really there are only two questions you need.

1. What do I want less of this year?

Let’s see. For me, I want less TV. Less weekend working. Less Email checking. Less junk food.

2. What do I want more of this year?

For me, I want more fresh food. More nature. More music, dancing, singing, playing. More and deeper spiritual time. More teaching.

How about you?


If you want more in depth planning, you can see my Simple Annual Planning Workbook.

Categories : Planning
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Organizing Kitchen Cabinets

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I had a reader, email and ask how to organize kitchen cabinets. Here are some of the tips I sent:

  • Use a rack for your bowls and small plates (big plates if you have the room)
  • Pans can go on a rack on the wall or nested in a cabinet
  • If you have non-stick plans, put paper towels between pots and pans
  • The lids can go into a slot organizer like for mail
  • Cutlery needs a drawer/utensil organizers to keep knives, forks, spoons, etc. separated
  • Glasses can be placed upside down in the cabinet
  • Spices are good on a lazy susan in the cabinet
  • Boards can go next to the microwave if they don’t fit in drawers
  • Daily small appliances can go on the counter
  • Less used appliances can go into the cabinets
  • Cookbooks can go on a high shelf or a bookshelf on the wall. I would suggest though that favorite recipes be put in the computer. Most cookbooks can be given away unless you use them a lot.
  • Have a recyclable station in the basement or garage
  • The most important thing is to not have lots of stuff in the kitchen you don’t use

What tips help you in the kitchen?

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