Organizing Family Events to Make Memories

 

organizing family events

Each season  I love watching family events unfold as memories are made.  In the spring, it’s family pictures in bluebonnets, photos in strawberry patches, and kids holding eggs and baskets. In summer, it’s family reunion photos and  July 4th patriotic family celebrations. In fall, kids in pumpkin patches, family Thanksgivings and lots of pictures with Santa make me smile.  Making memories requires organization and time management.  It takes planning and research, having your camera charged and ready, choosing kids’ outfits, and a lot of energy to be sure your family traditions happen. (Sometimes it requires having candy ready to “inspire” toddlers to sit still!)  Family memories are generated by organizing family events.

So how do family memories and photos happen?  Here’s how!

  • Confer with your partner on upcoming events at a family meeting. What’s the next holiday, birthday or memory maker?  Get this on all the calendars. You can add this to your online calendar as a recurring event so you can revisit your plans annually. 
  • What will be needed?  Food? Clothing? Location? Travel plans? Jot these down and decide who is responsible for what.  Writing out these plans makes it easier to look back and check on your responsibility.  Great apps for this are Notes and Evernote.
  • It’s the little details that are important.  Create a checklist including dates.  The checklist can be a list by date or day (such as Monday or May 5.)  Include any detail that will derail the activity, such as charge camera, bring extra battery, purchase blue boy’s shirt size 6, or load bag into car. 
  • Set a deadline for getting the above tasks accomplished and check back in a week before to be sure everything is done. 
  • On the day of the event, double check your checklist and be sure everything is all set. Leave extra time for the oops that happen!

You may be shaking your head, wondering if this is really this simple. The hard part is staying on course with your family, keeping other intrusions off your calendar and working at the baby steps ahead of time.  As families, we don’t want to miss out on anything. But it’s important to prioritize!  We can’t do it all each year, but we can do what’s we love the most. 

In years to come, when your kids and you are looking at family photos, you will all remember the fun!  Looking back at your family photos from your childhood, what’s your favorite memory?

Check out my pinterest board Making Family Memories

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Recycling and Reselling Your Stuff

recycling and selling your stuff

We are all looking for ways to make a difference for our planet. We want to reduce what we have, make better use of our stuff and recycle what we are done with. We are making a commitment to make our world a better place. April is the annual celebration of Earth Day and a time we focus on ways to reduce-reuse-recycle.

However….what if you could save the planet and make money at the same time?  There are lots of sites dedicated to recycling and reselling your items.  Here are some sites that help you do just that!

Swop.com

SwopBoard is an online marketplace to buy, sell and give back to local schools. You can buy, sell and donate money to schools through your sales.

Sell Your Phone On Ebay

Get cash selling your phone on eBay. Simply select your device, see its current value, and list it and sell it.

Ebay Sells for You

Selling professionals handle everything – taking photos, describing your items on eBay, answering any questions and shipping to buyers.  You get 70% of proceeds.

 Gazelle.com

Gazelle gives you an online quote, you ship your stuff with a prepaid mailer, and get paid by PayPal, check, or Amazon gift card.  You can sell smart phones, ipads, tablets and more.

Thredup.com

Thredup pays you real money for the clothing and covers 100% of the cost to send your clothes.

 Chairish

Sell used furniture online with this virtual showroom.

EagleSaver

Sell your DVDs, books, CDs  and games online. 

Have a resource to share?  List it here!

I love sharing ideas on pinterest, especially about reusing, recycling and upcycling.

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Houston Kingwood Texas Local Places to Recycle

Houston and Kingwood Texas Local Recycling

 

It’s spring and finally time to enjoy the outdoors by organizing your garage. There’s so many different things in your garage that can benefit others and can be recycled. Getting the big stuff out first helps you see progress and feel success in organizing your garage.  Here are some of the options as you are recycling and organizing your garage.

Old furnishings, clothes, toys, and tools 

Electronics

Used and new building materials and appliances in working condition

Recycling and organizing your garage makes a difference for your family and benefits our community.  Take advantage of our fabulous spring weather combined with a sense of purpose for your family.

 

With the big stuff out of the way,  you are ready for a plan for your garage organizing? Check out this post to get a plan together!

 

 

 

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Recycling, Upcycling and Repurposing

recycling and upcycling

Is there a little crafty in you? Do you find ways to use what you have for decor?  Are you on pinterest scouring ideas to upcycle, recycle or repurpose furnishings?  I love finding creative uses for what we have!

Upcycling is converting what you have into something wonderful, functional and creative.  The starting point is wanting to reuse or repurpose existing items. From there add a dash of possibility and off you go!

Some items can be repurposed without any effort.  Lots of people are upcycling.

  • Hang wine racks for towel holders in their bathroom.
  • Baby wipe containers are great to hold games, puzzle pieces or cards
  • Repainted tv consoles are great for a landing strip or kids armoire.
  • Use an old armoire for a small office space.

Even if it is a change of paint color to fabulous chalk paint or a robin’s egg blue, upcycling makes our interiors fun!

I love my connections on social media! Here is a roundup of ideas for recycling, upcycling and repurposing furniture from my social media and  Blog Elevated friends. 

One of the most powerful parts of social media are the connections we make!  I asked my social media peeps what helps them get started on their spring organizing and cleaning. – See more at: https://professional-organizer.com/WordPress/2014/03/#sthash.v84NqaLK.dpuf

recycling upcycling repurposong

Ashley Hill, The Hill Hangout, The Magic of Chalkpaint

recycle, upcycle, reuse

Photo courtesy of The Clutter Princess

Janice Simon, The Clutter Princess,  A Little Paint, Much More Function

upcycle, recycle, repurpose

Photo courtesy of Eat, Pray, Read

Kelli Hays, EatPray{Read}Love, Dresser Do-Over: I Got my Teal!

upcycle, recycle, repurpose

Photo courtesy of Untrained Housewife

Angela England, Untrained Housewife,  Repurposed Wall Lantern Terrarium

 

recycle and upcycle

Photo courtesy of Ginny G Furniture and More

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ginny G, DreamGinnyG, Repainted armoire

 

Want more ideas? Check out my pinterest page Recycling and Upcycling.

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Garage Organizing Do’s and Don’ts

garage organizing

Did you know…

§  38% indicated that the garage was the messiest room in their home.

§  25% of people with two-car garages don’t park any cars in their garage and that 32% parked only one.

§  In a recent poll people 25% of respondents said they want a three-car garage, even considering the extra cost.

 

Spring is a great time to organize your garage.  Here are some simple ways to get your garage organized with do’s and don’ts.

 

DO’S                                                                         

1.    Start with a team.  Garage organizing is a big project and best done with lots of help. Your team can be your family, church or high school teens, or anyone you can corral to help.

2.    Plan for small, manageable time and space pieces. Schedule several times throughout a month to work in 2 -3 hour segments. Work in sections throughout your garage, such as floor first, left wall, back wall, then right wall.

3.    Set up pick up times for your donations.  It’s easier if a charity comes to you to pick up rather than loading your car.

4.    Establish categories and zones for your keep items, such as car, athletics, gardening, camping, storage. 

 

DON’T’S

1.    Just buying shelves and containers is not the way to start.  Have a plan so you know what to purchase and how much to purchase.

2.    Just relocate items in the garage.  Now is the time to review, recycle and donate what is not used at your home.

3.    Pull everything out of your garage and onto your driveway. It’s easy to get overwhelmed while organizing. Taking it in small increments helps you make good decisions and finish the project over time. 

4.    Keep things for an unscheduled garage sale.  If you don’t have a garage sale on the calendar already, donate and get a tax deduction instead.  

 

Remember, your garage is the most frequently seen space in your home.  Organizing your garage gives you the greatest financial bonus in money saved from storage unit costs and wear and tear of your car costs. Most importantly you have access to what you use.   

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7 Tips for Organizing Your Garage this Spring

garage organizing

With spring in full force and even warmer weather on the way, now is the time to tackle the garage. Organizing the garage can be a daunting task, but you’ll thank yourself later when your garage is clean and organized and you can easily find gardening tools, bikes, and other items you use in warmer weather.  Organizing your garage can be easy with these 7 tips from Garage Systems LLC.

1. Make a Game Plan: Planning ahead makes most tasks easier. Write down what you want to accomplish in the garage and how you plan to accomplish it. What are my goals? How will things be stored? Will I use boxes or bins? Where will things be stored? Will I need to invest in a storage system?

2. Enlist Help: Don’t do it alone. Unless you feel you can tackle the entire garage by yourself, enlist the help of another person. They can help you move large and heavy items around, help you decide what to keep or toss, and offer up other perspectives on how to best store and organize things.

3. Move Everything Out: Move everything out of the garage and give it a really good, clean sweep.

4. Sort & Toss: Deciding what to keep and what to toss is usually the most difficult part. Items that haven’t been used in the last few years and have no foreseeable use should go. Make a keep, donate, and toss pile. Since it’s the beginning of garage sale season, consider making a garage sale pile if that is something you’d like to do.

5: Categorize: Once you’re left with your “keep” pile items, it’s time to group like items together. Some typical garage storage categories include:

Yard tools

Power tools & small tools

Automotive tools

Holiday decorations

Sports gear

Children’s outdoor toys

6. How to Store it: Use clear bins or label colored bins to store less frequently used items. This makes identification of contents easy and plastic pins protect your items better than cardboard boxes. Plastic bins are more stable than cardboard boxes are sturdier for better stacking.

7. Where to Store it: Give thought to where each category should be stored. More frequently used items should be stored in a visible area and within easy reach. Less frequently used and seasonal items should be stored out of the way.

Instead of stacking bins and other items on the floor in the corner, take advantage of the vertical space your garage has to offer. Use wall and ceiling space to store everything up high. Sturdy shelves, hooks, and ceiling racks are great for storing and hanging everything up off the floor, creating a clean, organized look and opening up floor space.

Garage Systems LLC is a garage storage and organization company serving the Greater Houston area with storage solutions and tips for an organized garage.

Easy Ways to Organize your Recycling

 

organize recycling

With the best of intentions, it’s easy to get stuck when you are recycling.  All of my clients recycle paper, plastic, glass and cardboard.  They have one step of recycling all set, but other steps can foil their best intentions.  Think about easy ways to organize your recycling in order to make recycling happen.

First off, it’s important to know what to recycle!  Here are some ideas thanks to Earth911.  Did you know that pizza boxes can’t be recycled because of grease?  Check out what can and can’t be recycled.

Let’s make recycling super easy!

 

Easy to access products

Easy ways to organize your recycling

Photo compliments of the Container Store

Make recycling easy with these stack-able totes. These totes can be placed just outside your back door to drop items in after rinsing.  Generously sized, you can recycle a lot and then carry these to the curb or your car to complete this job.

 Easy to drop off locations

easy ways to organize your recycling

Schools often have paper and cardboard recycling.  Drive by and drop off paper once a week.  Best Buy has drop off for electronics.  In Houston we have Drop off Houston, a free take-back program for electronics at over 30 locations city-wide.  This includes televisions,fax machines, hard drives. computer monitors, DVD players and computers.

 

 

Easy to remember

recycling and team work

Set a reminder in your smartphone, write in red on  your calendar, or add a note to your kid’s chore chart to keep your recycling routine going.  It’s up to everyone in your family to help make recycling happen.

When I was growing up, my dad and brother would recycle newspaper once a month together. It was a great way to share the responsibility and to talk about what is important. Set up team work in your family to make recycling a priority and a family value.  It also lessens the load when you share the responsibility with many family members.

I love that our city is focusing on recycling in all ways.  Easy, convenient recycling is available in Houston and Kingwood.

I want to also thank Keep Kingwood Green for their local initiatives too!

How can you make organizing happen at your home or business?

 

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