Browsing articles in "Organizing"
Jan 11, 2014
Jamie

Moleskin 2014 Planner

With all of the gadgets and tools around these days to help a gal keep her schedule organized, I decided to give them a try in 2013 and go without a physical planner. I decided back in January to toggle between my work and gmail calendars on my computer and iphone and try to organize it all on our wall calendar at home. Although the little popup reminders on my phone were pretty nice, this system just didn’t work for me.  I never forgot any super important dates but I just didn’t stay on top of my week and the zillions of to-do’s like I use to be able to do with a physical planner.

So I recently hit up the interwebs to look for the perfect planner and boy did I find exactly what I was looking for… the Moleskin 2014 Weekly Planner. This bad boy is small, durable, features a weekly layout AND has a note / lists section for every week.

Moleskin 2014 Planner

Moleskin 2014 Planner

So for all you list makers out there like me, this planner is perfect for planning out your week’s appointments and any associated to-do’s related to them. There is just something so therapeutic about crossing something off your to-do list. I’m guilty of even writing stuff I’ve already done down just so I can cross it off. One great big fan of instant gratification here.

Moleskin 2014 Planner

Something I was a little skeptical about was the size but after using it for a few weeks, this is definitely a perk as it conveniently fits into my purse. To show you the true size, I parked one of Dylan’s matchbox cars that are rapidly taking over my house.

Moleskin 2014 Planner

I got caught in the act though. Apparently, this was a major Mama no no. My bad.

Moleskin 2014 Planner

Moleskin 2014 Planner

Anyone else going old school planner with me this year?

xoxo,

jamie

Jan 1, 2014
Jamie

New Target Storage Bins

I love buying little storage bins. In my ripe old age of 28, I now get just as excited over a fresh new box as I do about a new pair of shoes. Very sad but oh so very true. Ok, so I guess it’s not really the box I’m getting hype over though, it’s really more about knowing what that adorable little container is going to do … which is organize and simplify. I’m just not a big fan of digging around big bins for little things or worse not knowing where all those little things are. And as ol’ Sweet Brown once said, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”

But what this somebody definitely had time for yesterday were these $5 bins I strolled by in Target. With everyone’s “get organized” New Years resolution, this is such a great time to find good deals on storage bins and Target has so many awesome styles this year!

Target Storage Bins

This polka dot beauty comes in white and black but unfortunately I couldn’t find it on Target.com. These were in the seasonal section of my local target on an end cap.

Target Storage Bins

Although there are endless uses for these, I think I’m going to use one to store greeting cards for my friends and fam this year. It’s the perfect size for even oversized cards and with a snazzy little label and a few dividers, this is going to be one helpful little system.

Target Storage Bins

Yes, Mama… that’s your birthday card. Happy early birthday and please act like you didn’t already see it when I mail it to you in a few weeks Smile

Target Storage Bins

The second polka dot box is going to be the new home of me and Jer’s “love letter” box. Ok, Ok… before you start hating or think I’m the biggest cheese ball ever, this is just a box that I started throwing all of the cards and letters Jer and I have given each other through the years in. But thanks to a lotta’ love or maybe thanks to narrow Jack Rogers sandals, this bad boy is ready for an upgrade.

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As I was moving our cards into their new home, I came across this gem. A few years ago I convinced Jer to trade in pre-written Hallmark cards for more thoughtful, sincere letters and homemade cards. But being the tech guru my sweetie is, a simple pen and paper just wouldn’t do. Oh no, he headed straight to this Microsoft Card template and even threw in some super snazzy clipart. I know… I know…  I’m one lucky lady!

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The navy striped bins could also be used for so many things, but I think I’m going to keep these in Dylan’s room since they go really well with his nautical theme. They also happen to be the perfect size to house 66 matchbox cars that I’ve been desperately trying to keep off the floor. Am I a bad mom if I hide these from him?

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Target Storage Bins

Happy New Year and happy organizing!

xoxo,

jamie

Nov 24, 2013
Jamie

Martha Stewart Wall Organizer

You guys already know that I just love me some Martha Stewart. Last year I used several pieces from her office supplies collection to create our family binder and was just floored not only by the quality of the supplies but the design of it as well… I mean what doesn’t look good in light teal? So while in Staples this weekend, I thought I would swing by her section of the store to see what my homegirl had shakin’. And boy oh boy did I find “a good thing” ….

Martha Stewart Staples Collection

That little beauty on the left up there is Martha’s custom Wall Manager and to the right you can see all of the pieces (in white or black) to build it. The display gives one option but there are several ways to assemble. I also checked out Martha’s section on the Staples website to see other options for assembling the Wall Manager, and found a really cool tool that lets you design your own.

So as soon as I got home and walked through the door into our mudroom, I knew exactly where this bad boy was going to go. Jer and I have been unsuccessfully using that old dry ease calendar to keep a handle on our schedules and were throwing letters or netflex returns on the wooden ice box hoping that the next person to leave would know they were ready for mailing. Speaking of that wooden ice box, please don’t judge that honey stained piece of old school beauty. She’s a diamond in the rough, which I’m planning to stain and spruce up with some new hardware in the next month. She came from the house I grew up in and just feels like home to me. I remember exactly what my mama use to keep in each of those cabinets and every time I open one, it smells exactly like I remember it smelling.

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Ok so back to the Wall Manager. Now that I found the perfect spot, it was time to assemble. This is the part where I usually call in Jer for some help, but not with this piece, girlfriend. It seriously couldn’t be easier. Each piece has a plastic frame that easily detaches and sticks to the wall until you find the perfect spot to nail it in.

Check this out… it also has a built in level so that you know when it’s… well… level. What will she think of next…?

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The frame also makes it super easy to detach the display piece. This comes in handy especially for updating the calendar! And yes, I bought the Martha Stewart fine tip dry eraser marker. I couldn’t resist!

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So although there are so many options for assembling, I stuck pretty close to the Staples display as this just seemed like it would work best for us. Aside from important dates and reminders, this has also become our “inside mailbox” station. I dedicated one of the drawers to stamps, the large cubby to our outbox and the small cubby holds one of my favorite things – our super cute return address stamp. Paper Source makes the cutest stamp designs and the gift set stamper makes an awesome gift!

Martha Stewart Wall Manager

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Anyone with a busy family knows the power of a good organizer, so fingers crossed this one helps us tame the mail clutter and crazy schedules. Martha hasn’t let me down yet!

Martha Stewart Wall Manager

xoxo,

jamie

Jun 2, 2013
Jamie

Working Mom Cleaning & Chore Schedule

It’s probably not something I should admit out loud or to everyone that follows or stumbles upon this blog but I’m going to anyway. My house is founkey. Yes, that’s my way of saying it’s super funky. I’m talking dirty, dusty, sticky, smelly, stinky. I know in my previous post I talk about embracing your dirty floors and dusty shelves for that oh so precious time with your little ones, but I may have taken that a bit far recently. I mean when your husband (who I believe washed his sheets yearly in college = supa founkey), starts to comment on the cleanliness of your abode…. that might be a sign that it’s time to scrub this joint down.

Jen over at iheartorganizing also got me jazzed up to do some cleanin’ with her May Mini Challenge. I absolutely adore her homemade cleaners and tips for organizing it all – featured below:

Source: iheartorganizing.com

As much as I would love the time to make my own cleaners and keep this place spotless – my life reminds me that it just aint gonna happen. In fact, the lack of time from working full-time + the joy I’m having using my spare time to play with my sweet baby boy is what got this place in it’s current state of founkeyness (if you haven’t already, say it out loud, it’s fun!). So I decided to take some of Jen’s cleaning tips and apply them where possible, with the hope that it will save me time down the road because let’s be honest, there are about a million and two things I’d rather be doing than scrubbing you know what off you know where.

First things first, I had to get my cleaning supplies hoarding under control. With three sinks in this house, it seemed easier to just get three of each cleaner and distribute evenly, however when you run out of one and forget to restock, you’re forced to run back and forth, thus adding more time to an already sucky chore. So to nip this in the bud, I began by taking stock of what I had:

Cleaning Products

And then I pared it down to one of each of everything that I really needed for this traveling caddy. I keep kitchen cleaners and such under the kitchen sink, so this caddy is more for cleaning bathrooms, bedrooms and living areas.

Cleaning Caddy

Here’s what’s in my handy-dandy caddy:

  • - Pledge Multi Surface Everyday Cleaner + Microfiber cloth: I mostly just use for dusting furniture
  • - Windex + Paper towels: Mirrors and granite countertops for a little sparkle
  • - Lysol wipes: Countertops, faucets, toilet seats
  • - Lysol Power & Free Bathroom Cleaner: Toilets, tubs and sinks. I LOVE this stuff. Lysol claims it has more cleaning power than bleach without the harshness and I believe it. It smells wonderful too. I debated using it to get this horrible spray tan off me but the warning label made me think twice.
  • - Lysol Disinfectant Spray: I hose the house down with this stuff often. From door knobs to sofas, this stuffs kills the germs and freshens the room. In linking to the site, I saw they have a new scent for Baby’s Room. Anyone tried this? Does it smell better than the original?
  • - Scrubbing Bubbles: Does wonders for my glass shower door.
  • - Sponges and scrubbers

So with my caddy all ready to get down and dirty, Jer and I spent Saturday cleaning the snot out of this house and it literally took hours. It really got me thinking – how can I do little bitty chores (I’m talking less than 10-20 minutes) throughout the week so that I don’t have to spend my precious weekends cleaning all day? So I created {drum roll please}… a Working Mama Cleaning Schedule:

Download Customizable Cleaning Schedule Here

Daily and Weekly Chores

As much as I’d love to have a spotless house everyday, that’s simply not possible with my life, but I think this schedule is totally doable. There are the basics that just have to get done everyday like making beds and cleaning up after dinner but then there are the larger chores like cleaning bathrooms and vacuuming floors that will get done throughout the week. Since everyone’s schedules are different I included a link above to download the word doc version of this schedule and make it your own.

Got any working mama tips for keeping a clean house?! Would love to hear em’!

xoxo,

jamie

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I'm Jamie, just one new mama organizing her way to a sweeter and happier home

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