Organizing Receipts

organizing your receipts

 

Receipts here, there and everywhere? Is it time to get a better handle on your receipts? As temping as it seems to toss or shred as many as you can, it is easy to find a simple solution for storing receipts.  Organizing receipts saves money, helps you return items easily, and simplifies tax time.

Here are 6 simple ways to keep receipts under control!

  • Use a Ziploc or small zipper case in your car for receipts.  Gather them together from your purse, car and bags.   Drop them in the case each time you get gas.
  • Place an envelope on your kitchen desk.  Keep receipts by month and write the name of the month and year on the front of the envelope.
  • Have a slot in your command center in your kitchen for receipts.  Drop these in daily while you are doing your paper triage.
  • Have receipts in the closet? Keep a box in your dressing area for dropping in receipts.
  • Use a 13 slot accordion file for keeping receipts by month.  Keep your accordion file in an easy to access desk drawer.
  • Set up a monthly hanging file for receipts and bank deposit slips in the front of a file drawer.
  • Keep your receipts in a To Be Scanned folder or box.  Neat Desk is a great option and easy to use.  Have your Neat Connect (sponsored link) set up wirelessly all the time on  your desk, ready to use.

Now that you have gathered these, how long do you keep receipts?

  • Want to match up your credit card purchases with the monthly statement?  Match and then destroy unneeded receipts.
  • For major purchases, staple the receipt to the instruction book.
  • For taxes, in the state of Texas, these can be used as a tax deduction because of sales tax. Save your receipts by month.  Neat Connect (sponsored link) is especially helpful with templates for taxes.

Got receipts? Organizing receipts? How are you organizing receipts?

 

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5 Blogging Tips I Learned at BlogElevated

 

blog elevated

Last weekend I attended Blog Elevated, an event hosted in Houston to build a blogging community and teach skills about blogging.

I started blogging in May 2009.   As a professional organizer, I think “organized” about my work, my marketing and my blog.  I searched for a blogging conference to learn more about how to make my efforts more effective and efficient, because you know…. I am an organizer.  Attending BlogElevated last weekend was an amazing opportunity to learn about this craft and connect to local bloggers. I want to share 5 tips I learned at BE (BlogElevated) about blogging.

1. BE statistical.  One of my top goals was to learn more about my most valuable posts. I wanted to know which posts are read most frequently.  I wanted to learn about statistics for me to decipher what was most important to my readers.  Attending a session about google analytics hit home for me.  It was a line by line tour of what to look for and where to find information I wanted.  Knowing how to guage my metrics will help me focus.

 

2. BE consistent.  One of my strengths has always been to work in a methodical manner, posting consistently on the same day of the week, writing high quality material consistently, and consistently seeking way to engage with my readers.  The value of consistency is that your followers look for this and start to crave their consistent interactions with you.  What a great affirmation for me!

 

3. BE a team player.  BlogElevated stressed the importance of sharing with each other, teaching each other, helping each other and networking with each other.  From Google+ sessions to SEO links, speakers addressed the importance of being there for each other through social media interactions, linking with guest posts and finding ways to help each other.  A community where we are all supporting each other with our strengths is the best kind place to BE!

 

4.  BE inspired.  It is about the vision you are creating for yourself and for others. You can be inspired to share ideas with others like Cool Asian Hair. You can be an inspiration to others like Chookooloonks.  Sharing your vision may not take you directly to where you want to go, but it will make for an amazing journey in any case.  Enjoy the ride, whether success or not so much.

 

5. BE yourself.  Have your own voice and be the authentic you.  This thought is empowering!  What we each share rings through our voices in our writing, brands you when you want to work with companies, and propels you forward as  you share your blog through social media.  There is nothing more valuable to me.

I look forward to staying connect with #BlogElevated through the Thursday night twitter chats. Join us at 9 pm central!

 

Organize your Papers with a Command Center

 

 

 

 

 

paper organizing

Scraps of paper everywhere?  Not sure where your bills are? What about your kid’s papers to return to school?  Organize your papers with a command center.

 

This custom creation pulling together several solutions for paper can make finding and accessing your papers super easy.  Bulletin boards, wall calendars and wall pockets may be the perfect spot for you to post your paper and get organized.  Having components that suit your organizing needs and create slots for specific categories of papers make it easy to find things.

 

Here are some ideas to post your paper and organize with a bulletin board, wall calendar and wall pockets.

  • Your bulletin board is a visual reminder of activities coming up.  Its a place to post important papers, schedules, invitations, announcements, and inspirational quotes.  As papers come in, simply pin the most important papers that you won’t want to lose to your board to keep track of them.  If an invitation or announcement arrives, keep it if it has directions, a gift registry, or as a reminder.  Be sure to add this date to your wall calendar as well, since duplication can help too.  Don’t overcrowd  your bulletin board as a clean, neat appearance will serve your purposes better.  Edit what is on  your board regularly to keep up to date.

 

  • Use 2 dry erase month at a glance calendars on your wall.  We always have dates that are more than one month away.  Having 2 calendars means that  you can keep up to date on activities.  Keep a handy container of different colored dry erase markers to use for different activities or family members.

 

  • Wall pockets are a fabulous way to keep up with paper.  Have one container for each family member. Have one container for receipts. Have one container for resources like directories.

 

  • Dry erase board lets you make notes, lists, and check lists.  It is an easy way to create reminders for you and your family.

 

  • A desk top sorter command station is another way to keep all your papers together too.  Use hanging files with tabs on them, labelled with To Do, To Pay, To File, Receipts, and Taxes.  You can add a hanging file for each family member too.  This compact solution keeps your bills and papers together.

 

  • Be sure to color coordinate your space. Having colors that match the walls or simply black or white make for a more serene space.

Check out my pinterest board for lots of ideas.

 

3 Steps to Organize Your Desk

 

organize your desk

Whether it is your home office, your small business office or your corporate office, getting down to business at your desk is a chore if it is piled with papers!  You need both a plan for what goes where on your desk and what to do with all those papers.   A plan for your desk will save you time finding papers. The more organized your desk is, the more confident you are  and the more professional you are perceived.

 

Follow these three steps to organize your desk and create an efficient and productive work area.

1. Planning your space
As you begin, determine what tasks you are doing in your office and the tools needed for these tasks. By making these decisions at the outset, you are preparing your space for accomplishment. Most of us want to pay bills, write a card, and keep important papers easy to access.  Create areas designating the best access for most frequent activities. As for room arrangement, place your desk in a position that allows maximum use of natural light. Position the desk in a direct ion that allows for direct viewing of all who enter without you having to turn.  Add additional space to your desk area with an L shape or credenza behind your desk for storing items you need to access.   Adding this space creates work space, compute space, and printer space.

 

2. Organizing your desk

Your desk top should be an inviting space.  Keep out only basic tools that you use every day. Minimize your photo gallery and knick knacks.  Desk drawers should have only what you use at the desk in them. Store your additional office supplies in another area. Keep specific categories of items individually stored in different drawers. One drawer should contain bill paying tools such as checks, stamps and envelopes.  One drawer should focus on writing a note and should include stationary and note pads.  One drawer should hold supplies with a pencil tray holding pencils, pens, tape, stapler and scissors. Again, keep just enough to use and do not over stuff the drawers. Place books on book shelves and magazines or reading material in a basket to grab and go. Be sure that your telephone, computer and other essentials are placed ergonomically.  Your calendar should have a specific spot so you can see it all the time.

3. Organizing your papers
Think about paper in terms of what you need to do with them.  Some papers require an action and some papes need storage to be retrieved.

Create your command center for “Action” files. Label them according to what actions or terms fit best with your needs. These files can be call, file, mail, or pay. Or these can be named by client name, project name, or other key word that comes to mind quickly. Clearly label your files so you will always know what is in them, and just as importantly, the labels will remind you what not to put in them.  At the end of every day, there should be a spot to put away the files you have used that day. The files in your command center  are the most actionable.  Your command center can be a desktop sorter or a section on your wall.

Less frequently accessed files can be placed in your file drawer in your desk or an accessible cart. These can be references, projects that are completed this year, or general files for running your business.  As for filing cabinets, use a low-lying, two-drawer cabinet that can be placed next to or near your desk for the added use of its top for other items that you often need.  This is what makes an L for your extra desk space.  Having easy to access files makes it more likely for you to file.

Have a spot for incoming mail and other papers.  It can be a wall pocket, basket or inbox.  Having this space set aside will give  you a place to drop all papers before you have time to review them. Alert your family or colleagues to drop papers in this spot to keep your desk clear.

 

Go Paperless

Set up a Neat connect (affiliate) to eliminate scraps of paper like business cards, tax related receipts and meeting notes. It’s an efficient way to access small bit of information easily. No more hunting for notes or trying to find a phone number for a potential client.

 

 

 

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Organized and Stylish! Cute counts with this File Tote Organizer for Paper

Disclosure: I am an affiliate for many of the products and services that I recommend. When you click on the link on my site and purchase  the product or service being offered I will receive a percentage of that purchase, at no extra cost to you. If you don’t feel comfortable doing that, please go directly to the site of the product.

Office Candy sunrise key file folder sunrise key file tote organizer

 

Staying organized and stylish is easy with this cute  File Tote  for paper from OfficeCandy.   Cute counts when getting organized! My philosophy about organizing includes creating a system for what goes where and a routine for when to do the organizing.   A cute organizer can make dull, tedious paper work a lot more fun and easy to accomplish.  Paper organizing can be especially overwhelming without the right system and routine.  Having a great product with slots for your paper categories can make all the difference.  When you are on the go, attending meetings, working as a volunteer, or just want a system that can move to a work space, having a tote works well.

 

Why I love the Sunrise Key File Tote Organizer:

  • It stands freely for easy sorting and filing.
  • It opens to have 8 tabs and 10 pockets for categories, like an accordion file.
  • It can be labelled inside the accordion file keeping categories easy to find.
  • It coordinates with other sunrise office supplies, File Folders and Padfolio Clipboard.

Where to find this item?  View it and related products at  File Totes at Office Candy

 

What will you organize in your file tote?

 

Hugs and Happy Organizing Under Stairs Closet

under stair organizing

 

The dreaded under stairs closet area! It’s usually a dumping ground because not only is it a big open space, but it usually has an angled ceiling and a curved section.  Most families are confused what to store in there other than the vacuum.  Let’s get this space functional for you and make it great storage.

  • This is a space where everything needs to come out and be divided into toss, donate, or keep.  Once you know what is in there you can make better decisions on storage.  
  • Deep under stair storage is a great place to storage a category with large items.  You can store luggage, printed photos,  holiday decorations, or home decor in the back of the closet and use the front for your everyday needs like your vacuum or sweaters.
  • Under stair storage should be divided into front and back storage.  The back is less accessible, so large, infrequently used items can have a permanent home there.
  • Use 66 quart or smaller bins to make best use of the space.  When you group in the bins, be sure to label the categories on 2 sides and the top of the container. This way you will always know what is in the bins.  You can also keep a list on the back of the door too.   Arrange the back bins by height depending on the slope of the ceiling.
  • Use a clear shoe organizer on the back of the door for small items you might need easy access to in the adjacent room.  It creates new space!

Wishing you Hugs and Happy Organizing with your new under stair organizing!