All of Your Excuses Not to Declutter: Debunked

Clutter. It happens to all of us. After years of living a life full of experiences, memories and relationships you’re bound to accumulate a certain amount of stuff.

Seasonal clothes, household décor, children’s art projects – you name it, your house probably has a little too much of it.

All of this stuff clouds our space and our minds as well.

What’s one of the best things you can do for yourself and your psyche? Let. It. GO.

Decluttering is way easier said than done for many of us, so what are the reasons holding us back? It varies. Hopefully, after some digging and getting to the root of the problem, we can overcome them and actually give that stuff away. Not all of it of course… but some of it. 😉

Emotions

One of the biggest reasons we all can’t let go of stuff? We’re attached! Physical belongings hold a ton of meaning for us – but how can you tell what’s truly worth keeping and what can be thrown away?

Certainly there are things that hold a lot of meaning, and nobody is saying you have to part with those things in order to achieve a minimalist lifestyle. But, most things do not fall into this category.

If holding on to everything is a source of emotional comfort, consider what you’re holding on to psychologically that is actually causing more stress than comfort. Turns out, there are some pretty strong psychological effects of clutter, and your brain will thank you even more if your space is clean and minimalist.

Too Busy

A lot of the procrastination of decluttering comes from being too busy – and the whole process feeling like way too much of a hassle for it to be worth it.

If this is you, consider taking it piece by piece. There’s no reason to do it all at once! Chip away at it little by little – maybe a drawer or countertop every Sunday morning. After a few weeks and months, your surroundings will start to feel quite different.

Additionally, if that’s not enough impetus, think about how much time your cluttered space actually wastes daily. If you constantly find yourself digging through crowded drawers and tripping over piles of shoes in the closet trying to find the pair you actually want amongst all of the ones you never wear anymore, it might be time to give a few things away.

Too Overwhelming

This one ties to the one above – but like any big challenge, take it one step at a time. No one is asking you to quit your job and become a full-time organizer until your house is spotless. If you notice something you never use anymore on the kitchen counter – just get rid of it right there and then. Make it a daily habit to have your eyes peeled for things you can release.

Or, schedule it in! Maybe every Saturday afternoon, Tuesday evening or Sunday morning you set aside 30 minutes to declutter. Trust us, once you get going – it’ll start to feel good and you won’t be able to stop!

Family Heirlooms

Last but certainly not least, the other super common resistance to decluttering comes from family heirlooms. We inherit so much from our family members – sometimes it’s emotional baggage, and other times it’s literal stuff.

Again, decluttering does not mean throwing everything away that means something to you or your family. Quite the contrary! This is the stuff you keep. It’s the stuff that makes you happy and is filled with memories.

Once you throw away a bunch of other stuff you’ll be able to spend more time appreciating it, and that’s a beautiful thing.

So how can you get started today? Look around and identify key rooms that need the attention. Schedule a time, and just start. Make it a goal to throw away a certain amount in a certain amount of time – and see where that gets you.

10 Habits of Super Organized People

When it comes to storage and organization, it can feel like the work is never done. In truth, it never is! Your home, car, office and life are always getting disorganized and thus require more cleaning. It’s a part of… well… living!

As humans we move around, use things, eat on plates, drop things and create dirty laundry. All of this is okay, as long as we stay ahead of the mess so it doesn’t grow and become overwhelming. Overwhelm leads to cleaning procrastination, which leads to a bigger mess, more procrastination, and the vicious cycle continues.   

How can we avoid this? By making cleaning, organizing and proper storage an established HABIT in our everyday life. What specific habits should you develop? We’ve listed our favorites below.

  1. Organize First, Store Later

So many people, us included, set out to organize our lives and the first thing we do is buy an expensive set of colorful storage bins.

The truth is, it’s much better to organize first and then store afterwards. Sure you’ll probably find a use for those bins, but your money and time will be put to much better use if you organize everything FIRST and then buy the storage containers based on need.

2. Clean as You Go

When you use a dish, put it in the dishwasher. Hang up your towel. Make your bed first thing in the morning. Put clothes in the hamper.

Make it a habit to clean a little bit all of the time and to put things back where they live after you’re done with them. You’ll avoid the piles, clutter and mess.

3. Make Your Bed Every Day

It’s so simple, but it can make a huge difference. It gives you something to do every morning that starts your day on the right foot, and you’re guaranteed to end your day with a clean, comfy space no matter what happens.

4. Create a Routine and Stick To It!

This could be a morning routine, an evening routine, or organization routine in general. Making something a solid habit, and refusing to give up on it, will help you create the space for other healthy habits to form. Once one comes into play, others will as well.

Be realistic with yourself and you’ll reap the rewards soon enough.

5. Don’t Aim for Perfection

That being said, it’s not about being perfect. If you miss a day, that’s okay. If your bed is only half made by the time your toddler is tugging you into the kitchen – it’s all good.

Something doesn’t have to be absolutely spotless for it to be clean.

Do your absolute best, that’s good enough.

6. Things Live Where You Use Them

One of the best things you can do for your home’s organization? Designate where things live, and make sure they stay there. Better yet, designate that things live where they’re used.

The vacuum cleaner? Probably near the living room or kitchen. Bathroom cleaning supplies? Either in the bathroom or hall closet right outside. Items living far from their place of purpose guarantees lag in returning them to that spot, and thus the possibility of clutter. Avoid this!

7. Throw Away (or Donate) a Lot, and Often

This one is the most difficult to stomach for the hoarder in each of us, but it’s also crucial to keeping things in order. Purge a few times a year and get rid of anything you haven’t used in 6 months, and will probably never use again.

There’s so much freedom in this exercise, despite the potential immediate discomfort. Which items exactly? You know the ones – they’re the things you stare at all the time but haven’t picked up in a blue moon. It’s time for them to find a new purpose somewhere else.

8. Avoid Duplicates

Having a few duplicates of big items in case they break is one thing, but that extra coffee maker in the cupboard that’s about 15 years old? It can probably go. Duplicates are tempting, but rarely actually necessary. Toss ‘em.

9. 10 Minutes a Day

Small and steady wins the race. Dedicate 10 minutes a day to tidying up. You’ll find yourself in a cleaner, more calming environment and be more motivated to do bigger cleans on the weekends.

10. Garbage and Recycling Everywhere

Many of us underestimate how convenient trash cans are, but the truth is they’re pretty much necessary in every room in the house. Have them everywhere and empty them often. You’re guaranteed to lessen the amount of garbage left around your home that way.

Like any blogger advice, take what you like and leave the rest. Not all of these habits are going to work for every aspiring hyper-organized person. Pick what’s going to work in your life, what you can sustainably make a solid part of your routine, and make it a priority.

Let us know how it goes in the comments below!

Photo by STIL on Unsplash

Prepare Your Home for Fall in These 10 Steps

Whether we like it or not, summer is transitioning into fall and the seasons are changing. The days are getting shorter, temperatures are dropping and the weather is changing!  

Fall brings all sorts of wonderful things – foliage, crisp apples, pumpkins and squash – but it can also bring challenges to your home if you’re not prepared. Get ahead of the harsh winter weather and changing scenery by preparing your home now for the colder seasons that are coming.  

Not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered. Follow our simple steps below to whip your home into shape, so this season can bring warmth and beauty rather than damage and stress.

  1. Roof Over Your Head

First thing’s first, check the structure of your roof and make sure it’s equipped for the heavy snow or rainfall ahead. Nobody wants a leak or god forbid a collapse. Getting a professional set of eyes on it now and tweaking anything that needs it can save you a LOT of damage and money later on.

2. Warmth

One thing’s for sure, no matter where you live – you’re going to need warmth in the months ahead. Your AC has been chugging along all summer, so give it a break and change those coils before you switch your thermostat over. Then give your heater a check, change your air filters, inspect your chimney and make sure you’ve got a solid stockpile of wood and/or extra propane tanks. Also, check your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms- just for good measure.

3. Clean. Those. Gutters

You knew it was coming! One of the first things everyone thinks about with Fall? LEAVES. Leaves everywhere. They can be a ton of fun, back breaking work, and in terms of your gutters – the bane of your existence if left alone too long. Clean out those gutters and install covers if you have a ton of trees on your property that will inevitably dump directly into them.

4. Don’t Neglect Your Hoses

While you most likely won’t be using your hoses or sprinklers a ton in the winter, you still need to tend to them before everything closes down. Empty those hoses out and turn off the water spigots. This will prevent the water inside from freezing, cracking pipes, and causing a ton of damage come spring.

5. Take Care of Your Plants

It’s time to prepare your leafy green friends as well. Bring outside plants inside and give yourself a refresh on their care so you’re prepped to give them what they need until they can rejoin the elements. Fertilize and feed your grass before the first snowfall. This is a must-do. It will help your lawn survive the cold winter, and help it grow back faster and stronger come spring. Same thing goes for planting bulbs – doing it now will help brand new life emerge come spring.  

6. Prep for Emergency Storms Now

One thing winter brings is potential blizzards. Preparing now can, yet again, save you a lot of time, stress and money later on. Check that backup generator, gather supplies for a snowed-in situation, and prepare escape routes and plans.

7. From the Outside In

Make sure you’ve brought in all outside furniture that won’t be able to handle stronger elements. Strip those couch covers and wash them, wipe down the coffee tables and make sure they’re stored in a dry, cool place.

Don’t forget about yourself! Gather all winter clothing for you and everyone in the family and make sure everything fits and is in good condition. Heading to the store last minute before a ski trip can be a time lag and expensive endeavor. Check it all now and have it ready for when that first snow storm hits.

8. Speak For the Trees

If you’ve got a bunch of big, glorious trees on your property (first of all, good for you!) and secondly – take a look and make sure none of them have any low-hanging, concerning branches. Again, spotting these now rather than when piles of snow cause them to land on your car will save you a lot of grief. If you spot one, calling in tree specialists to chop it off should take no more than an afternoon.

9. Program That Thermostat

If you’ve got a programmable thermostat, now’s the time to adjust it to heating and program it to adjust the temperature while you’re at work or out of the house. This can save you a lot of money on wasted energy bills and clear your environmental conscience!

10. Bring Out the Winter Toys

Last but certainly not least – it’s time to bring out those winter snow toys and make sure they’re set to go. It might be a little early for skiing and snowboarding, but check them now and make sure they’re in good condition.

After all of this, sit back, sip your pumpkin spice tea or warm apple cider and revel in the new season, and even more in being prepared to enjoy it. Happy Fall!

Photo by Rowan Heuvel on Unsplash

Tips for Children’s Storage

Kids are messy. It’s the truth. No matter how hard we try, everything always seems to tornado with them around and the second everything is clean you invite another mess in. It can seem overwhelming and unavoidable, and almost as if you’ll always live in a little bit of a mess.

We’re here to offer you a respite from the disaster zone – and give you tips and tools for making kids organizing a healthy routine and part of everyone’s daily life.

While it may seem that kids will never be clean, there are some ways to curb the mess and make cleaning fun and manageable – or at least add fun colors so the mess in your playroom as an aesthetic appeal.  

  1. DIY Multi-Purpose Shelves.

These will quickly become your best friend with your kids ever-increasing number of belongings – and they don’t need to be expensive! There are many you can make yourself that can serve as a book case, toy bin, organizer, shelf for pictures, etc. For inspiration, check out this one, this one or this one.

2. Sophisticate It

Kids décor can mean whatever you want it to mean! It doesn’t have to be loud colors or obnoxious prints if that’s not what you want. Toy organizers don’t need to be plastic and disrupt a space. They can also have a more sophisticated feel – like this or this. (Or even pull a fast one and upcycle something like this shelf made out of an old tire.

3. Expect the Unexpected

Toy organizing doesn’t need to include buying all new things – take a look around your house and you’ll notice many things that have a defined purpose that can also be used in a kid’s room. Tupperware, shoe organizers, spice racks, dish racks, etc. Take another look at various storage options around your home, it’s almost as if they’re all dual-purpose and also made to tame kids’ messes. Get inventive and find a new job for something you no longer need or already love to use in your kitchen, bathroom, etc.

4. Crap Buckets

Crap. Buckets. These are perfect for those teeny pieces of plastic that inevitably end up in the pile of stuff on the ground in a kids’ room. They’re not things you can throw away, because they obviously have some purpose, but that purpose is not clear. Crap buckets. Do it. And label with the kids’ names if you want to get really fancy.

5. Bungee Cords

These are a great addition if you want to create your own DIY crate for stuffed animals, or wrangle things into a corner. They stretch, hold, and keep their shape for years and years.

6. Don’t Underestimate Magnets

Use wall space! It’s there, and so many things can be attached via magnets and easily put back. Bins for coloring books, cups on the refrigerator, favorite drawings, cups full of crayons, etc. Create some much-needed space by expanding storage options upward!

7. Use Air Space

A continuation of the previous point, take up extra corners of the room with toy hammocks – a great choice both aesthetically and logistically. Take a look at a great example here.

8. Legos, Legos, Legos

In the eyes of your children, there are never enough legos. They pile up, get mixed up, can all fit together and can REALLY hurt on bare feet. If you’ve ever accidentally stepped on one on your way out of your child’s room at bedtime you know what I’m talking about. OUCH.

So how can we keep them off the floor and out of harm’s way? There are many ways – Ziplock bags, plastic bins, color-coded storage, storage by size, themed set, etc. Whatever your strategy is – define it now and stick with it. Save your arches and don’t leave it up to chance.

9. Outdoor Storage

Backyard storage is just as important in terms of organizing, enjoying your space and increasing the longevity of your toys. Designate bins per type of toy or child and make it a habit to return everything to its home after every Saturday outside.

10. Binders for Manuals

Ah, manuals. Often neglected but desperately needed in rare but nonetheless critical moments. We recommend saving all of them and organizing them in a binder if possible. You’ll thank us later.

Photo by Vanessa Bucceri on Unsplash

Food Storage Tips to Help Food Last Way Longer

Gourmet food is expensive and there’s nothing worse than throwing away fuzzy strawberries, mushy onions and brown apples with a heavy heart. You’re literally throwing away money!

Sometimes we can’t help it – something gets kicked to the back of the fridge and we forget about it until a lingering smell forces us to remember. But oftentimes food spoils quickly due to improper food storage. We want to save you from this fate!

This time around, we’re talking proper food storage habits and tips to remember the next time you load up at the farmer’s market. Fresh produce is the best when enjoyed fresh – so let’s keep it that way as long as possible!

  1. Cool Air Slows, Room Temp Grows

One thing to note at the very beginning is that the colder the air, the slower the food will break down and spoil. Generally speaking, keeping things in the fridge will keep them fresh for longer. There are some hard and fast exceptions to this rule that we will address shortly – but don’t be afraid to use that fridge for the right things at the right time!

2. Let It Ripen

Avoid placing items in the fridge before they’re ripe – as this will slow down the process and make it harder to sense when they’re ready to eat. After bringing your fresh peaches home from the farmer’s market – if they’re still too firm to eat, leave them out for a day or so – and then once they’ve ripened place them in the fridge to “freeze” them in that delicious state.

3. When in Doubt, Refrigerate. (With Exceptions)

Continuing on with the first tip, there are some things that should never be refrigerated, and instead kept in a decorative bowl on the counter. Bananas are the first thing – as the peels will turn black and they won’t ripen as the enzymes that enable them to ripen are inhibited.

The second item that should not be refrigerated is tomatoes. They lose their flavor in colder temperatures. ‘

4. Use Those Crispers!

Those drawers at the bottom of your fridge are not just another storage option for any item! They’re specifically designed to create a humid environment that’s optimal for most fruits and veggies. Use em!

5. Seal It Tight

Flour, although dry and not as obviously perishable will go badly quickly without the proper storage. Keeping it in a sealed container is the best option, rather than simply in the paper bag it came in. Whole wheat flour is even more sensitive to its surrounding environment – so seal it up and keep it fresh!

6. Potatoes and Onions!

Potatoes and Onions are also items that should not be refrigerated due to the cold temperatures that convert the starch in them to sugar. Onions as well are sensitive to temperature and need decent air circulation to stay fresh. Store both in cool, dark, dry places – but not next to each other as they’ll bring out moisture and gasses in one another and cause them to ripen faster.

7. Paper Not Plastic

Lettuce and other greens should be stored with paper towels for moisture and in paper bags with plenty of air circulation to keep them fresh for longer. Avoid tight plastic bags and only wash right before you’re ready to enjoy to prevent mold growth.

8. Freeze the Cheese!

Cheese lasts the longest in its original packaging in the refrigerator. Avoid re-wrapping, and consider the option of freezing to keep it fresh for nearly 6 months! It may get a little crumbly – but better that than letting the whole block succumb to mold growth.

9. Treat Herbs Like Flowers

Herbs can be stored like flowers – in a glass with some water and plastic wrap over the top. Keeps them fresher and more flavorful for longer.

10. Wait to Wash

A general rule of thumb is avoid washing anything until right before you’re ready to enjoy. It’ll keep it from breaking down, growing mold, losing its texture, etc.

That’s what we’ve got! Which storage tips do you already use? Do you have any fool-proof tips to share with us? Like and leave a comment below to share!  

Photo by amoon ra on Unsplash

Back to School Organization Tips and Strategies

It’s back-to-school time! That magical time of year when the summer comes to a close and we all get prepped for another year of growing, learning, and endless amounts of paper coming home on a daily basis.

Seriously – what’s with all the paper?! And endless amounts of school supplies, new clothes, athletic wear, arts and crafts – the list goes on and on! Kids in school can be messy – and keeping things organized get can very overwhelming very fast.

The good news is – there are TONS of easy, low-cost solutions out there to keep things organized or at least under control as you head into another school year. We’ve gathered our favorite tips for you here.

  1. Go Through + Give Away

One of the best things you can do with a new school year is start it on a clean slate. That means going through everything and giving away what you don’t need! Or, correction… what your KIDS don’t need. 😉

This includes old clothes that no longer fit, worn out shoes, broken school supplies and stuffed animals they haven’t touched in years. Get rid of the old and make way for the new!

2. Label everything. Like, everything.

Spending money on brand new supplies only to have them lost the second your kid gets to school is annoying to say the least. In order to avoid this fate, label EVERYTHING your kid takes to school with their first and last name, and a phone number if appropriate.

3. Meal Prep for the Week

This can save monumental amounts of time in the morning and evenings getting breakfast, lunches and dinner together. Do a bit of prep over the weekend and plan out breakfast options as well as dinner plans. Stock the pantry full of easy to grab snacks for lunches, and store all of your lunch prep materials in the same place in the fridge.

4. Streamline Those Mornings

There are many ways to get this done – but making your mornings as easy as possible will make or break your school year. Keep the bathroom clean with the essentials grouped on the counter for your kids to use. Have a designated spot for shoes and backpacks where your kids can grab them in the morning on the way to the car. Set alarms with more than enough time to eat breakfast, get dressed and have the occasional meltdown as you begin the day. Starting everything off on the right foot will help you stay calm, organized, and decrease morning chaos as much as possible.

5. Keep the Car Clean

Depending on where you live and what your commutes look like, you and your kids probably spend a ton of time in the car. It’s your mode of transportation to all schools, activities, friends’ houses, movie nights, etc. It’s the epicenter of your whole schedule – and if it’s a mess, you’re going to feel like a mess. As much as you can – decrease the amount of stuff that accumulates – keeping little packs of essentials like chargers, band-aids and snacks. Vacuum once or twice a month, and attach pockets to the back of the front seats for your kids to store playbooks, toys or other activities.

6. Establish a Filing System

One essential thing to remember about the school year is it’s so much paper. Like, more paper than you could ever imagine. Homework, arts and crafts, newsletters, permission slips – the paper never ends. That’s why it’s essential to have an organization system in place so you’re ready for the cyclone when it hits.

Have designated folders for each of your children, as well as for yourself for school administrative stuff. Set these up now and label all tabs accordingly – this will save you a mountain of clutter later on.

7. Start a Supply Stash

You never know when your kid is going to need extra binder paper, a ruler, extra calculator batteries and magazine clippings. Keep a plethora of materials in a bin somewhere that you can whip out at a moment’s notice when a last-minute homework assignment pops up.

8. Plan Ahead

If you aren’t already, using a family calendar digitally or in paper form can be incredibly helpful in keeping everything organized. Note all school breaks, holidays and events now – as well as friends’ birthdays, parent teacher conferences and auctions. Refer to it frequently and update it whenever things come up. This way, nothing will be missed or catch you off guard.

9. Designate a Homework Spot

This services multiple purposes. Anchoring your kids to one specific place in the house for homework and productivity can keep them focused and help get homework done faster. It can also minimize mess as all of the crafts, building and coloring happens in one place. It’s a win-win.

10. Choose a Bedtime and Stick to It

One of the best ways to keep everyone together and in good spirits is for everyone to get a good night’s sleep – yourself included! Set a bedtime and stick to it. Routine, routine, routine.

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Moving With Pets: 5 Tips to Make it as Easy as Possible

If you think moving is stressful for us humans – imagine what it’s like for your pets! They have no clue what’s going on! They are now surrounded by a completely new environment with new smells, new sights and sounds – but similar humans, thankfully. J

What are some ways to ease this stress and make sure your pets get to the new home all in one piece? Here are our top tips on moving with pets and making the process as seamless as possible.

  • Take Them to the Vet ASAP

Different states have different vaccination requirements – so check with your current veterinarian early on and get it all squared away a few months before your move ideally.

  • Get your Carrier Early

Transporting animals obviously involves carriers no matter what method(s) of travel you’ll be using. Get your carriers early, put some of their favorite toys in there and leave them out to be explored.

  • Make Flight Arrangements With Care

Some airlines have changed their rules around animals in the cabin – limiting the number of them that are allowed. Additionally, making arrangements for them to fly underneath can be finicky – so it’s best to make all of these arrangements as early as possible and make sure you have all of the necessary documents, identification and other paperwork.

  • Make Their Space Cozy

One thing that will definitely calm them down is having a comfortable space to travel in. Make sure you’ve got a carrier that is the proper size, a few blankets, access to food and water (when appropriate) and some toys. Calming sprays and some treats can also do the trick if things get particularly anxious.

  • Security

Make sure your pets are microchipped, have updated information on their collars and have spare photos on hand in case your pets get lost. In a new space, you never know what could happen – and the last thing you want is a lost pet on top of everything else. Do your due diligence now to keep your pet safe and cared for.

Photo by Krista Mangulsone on Unsplash

8 Steps to Actually Organize Your Office

The home office – it’s a breeding ground for mess. No matter what you do for work – you probably have stressful moments and that stress can manifest very easily in your physical space!

Cleaning up this space can calm the mind and the body – leading to more productive work and more satisfaction!  

The good news is there are many ways to organize that office and keep it clean ONCE AND FOR ALL.

Let’s dive in!

  1. Go Through and Throw Out

This is one of the most important first steps you can take. Over time, a lot accumulates in our offices. Old papers, opened envelopes that are now irrelevant, broken knick knacks, old chords to electronics you no longer have, etc. This stuff gathers and clouds your space – and therefore your mind. Throw it out!* Trust us, it’ll feel so good and your clutter-free space will feel just like new.

2. Find Your System

Everyone operates differently! When it comes to finding a space for everything and everyday organization – find what works for you. It might look radically different than what works for someone else and that’s okay! Bins, (clean) piles, file folders, etc – it’s all good in our book as long as you stay consistent.

3. Make a Home for Everything

Adding on to the previous tip, make sure you know exactly where everything goes. Your unpaid bills, your stapler, extra stamps – it should all have its place. This might mean coming up with a bunch of different categories if things don’t fit neatly into a few different labels. This is okay! A lack of clarity of what goes where is where piles come from – avoid this.

4. Label, Label, Label

After you’ve decided where everything goes – label it! Labels will make it even clearer and help you stay consistent with putting things back where they go.

5. Deep Clean Consistently

Clean your office as often as you clean your bathroom! Or every other room in the house! Wipe your desk surface down, sweep underneath and dust off those picture frames. Organization goes deeper than just loose papers- make it a clean place from the inside out!

6. Avoid Sticky Notes

We don’t want to outlaw sticky notes by any means as they’re an incredibly useful tool! However, overusing them is a quick way to visually clutter your space in a way that isn’t helpful. If you’ve got too many around chances are you aren’t able to focus on one and read what it says anyway! Keep them to a minimum, and have a miscellaneous notepad where you take quick notes and transfer the info to where it belongs shortly after if necessary.

7. Invest in a Good Chair

We can’t emphasize this enough. Spending hours hunched over a computer or bent in a weird way puts a ton of stress on our bodies and over time, can create lasting effects. Save your back, hips, neck and other key joints by investing in an ergonomic chair. There are so many on the market now and the heavy price could save you hours of physical therapy and even surgery later on.

8. Decorate

After all of the organizing and cleaning – it’s time to make it fun! Make your space a place you want to be and curate it to your taste. Adding fun colors, objects with meaning and pictures of loved ones can all make it a place that’s fun and comforting as well as one for discipline and work.

After all of these steps we hope your work-from-home routine improves and you’re able to find more fun and clarity of mind in your home office.

What tip worked best for you? Leave us a comment below and let us know!

** When throwing out your office junk – donate what you can and throw away e-waste responsibly please!

Storage Containers: Paper or Plastic?

Ahh yes. The age old question – paper or plastic? In the grocery store, we leave it up to you (if your state hasn’t banned plastic bags that is!) But in terms of storage containers, we’ve outline some pros and cons for you with each one so you can make an informed decision that fits your priorities as well as what you’re looking to store.

In terms of which material is better, it depends! There are a number of factors to consider including where you’re storing, what you’re storing, how much space you have, your budget, how long you’re looking to store, etc.

Sounds like a lot – but not to fear! We’ve got you covered. Let’s dive in!

Cardboard Boxes

Pro: Store Using Minimal Space

  • One of the biggest pros to cardboard boxes is their ability to be disassembled, folded and stored with very minimal space. If you’re lacking space for storing your boxes after use, know you’re going to use them again in the near future and need something light but durable – cardboard is a really good option.

Con: Not Super Durable

  • After a few heavy-duty uses, cardboard boxes get worn down and lose strength and durability – go ahead and replace them when needed. Using them longer than you should can result in a big pile of your belongings crashing to the floor, which might cost you a bit more than new boxes would’ve!

Pro: Stack Easily in Storage

  • Whether it’s in the back of a moving van or in a longer-term storage unit, cardboard boxes are designed to all stack directly on top of one another and not take up any extra space. If you’re pressed for space, this can really help use vertical space efficiently.

Con: More Exposed to the Elements

  • Cardboard boxes are not as sealed as other options on the market – and therefore leave your belongings open to potential infestation from bugs, rodents, moisture in the air as well as liquid leaks and spills. Whether or not this is an issue depends on where you’re storing your goods.

Plastic Bins

Pro: They’re Reusable  

  • Unlike cardboard boxes, plastic bins can be reused over and over again for years with very minimal wear and tear. Also, many have different colored tops than can be used to categorize storage seasonally or based on family member!

Con: Bulkier, Generally Take Up More Space

  • Due to the bins being made of sturdier material, they can take up a bit more space than cardboard boxes.

Pro: More Protective

  • Plastic bins have the ability to seal completely and with a harder exterior they’re the superior option when looking for something that’s protective from the elements

Cons: More Expensive

  • Durable plastic bins will set you back further than cardboard boxes will. This comes down to how often you will be using them, and whether you need something for a longer-term storage option.

Overall, plastic bins are our choice for the superior storage option – no matter your circumstance. They will pay for themselves in a few move’s worth of cardboard boxes and provide longer-term protective storage as well.

You can find some excellent options at your local Costco, online on Amazon and other storage supply centers!

How to Organize Your Bathroom (Even If It’s Small)

Ahh the bathroom. No matter what, it seems to gather clutter and mess – and for good reason! It’s one of the most frequently used rooms in the house while also being one of the smallest. Many of us run in and out of it without paying it much thought, but this is a surefire way to accumulate a buildup of clutter and make the smallest space seem even smaller.

Taking a few extra moments each day to keep things organized can make a huge difference in the state of affairs.

Here are some top tips for keeping your bathroom space organized and clean, no matter how small it is, from organization experts.

  1. Only The Essentials

Only use the bathroom to store what’s absolutely critical for use in the bathroom. Extra cleaning supplies, rolls of toilet paper and that Costco-sized box of Q-Tips can go in the hall linen closet.

2. Go Vertical!

Use the vertical space in your bathroom for storage as much as possible. Tall shelves behind the toilet make a great decorative storage option, and shower caddies that stand upright can create a large amount of storage for shampoo and other cosmetics without taking up a ton of room.

3. Work With the Seasons

Sunscreen and certain moisturizers are better for the summer, and can be switched out once the warmer weather hits. Similarly, colder weather can mean a heavier conditioner, or different eye makeup. Switch it all out just like you do with your wardrobe! Making a consistent habit of getting rid of expired products or ones you no longer use can also eliminate clutter and make the space one of calm and serenity.

You spend a little of each day in your bathroom! Make it a space you love to be in, and the joy of your morning and nighttime routines will radiate into the rest of your life.

Check out our other blog posts on storing in the winter, summer, as well as our series on specialty items like electronics and formalwear!