When your pantry says BOO!

When your pantry says BOO!

It’s that time of year that many people get excited and energized to go to a haunted house.  They love the suspense of what is lurking around the corner.  I know so many who thrive off this adrenalin rush.  Are you one of them?  Or are you like me and hate being caught off guard?

If you are one of these who love it, can you say the same thing about your home?  Do you know what is lurking in the corner of that pantry?  The pantry is one of the most neglected areas in a home.  Most people I know would not be able to give me a detailed inventory of their pantry.  Or even a semi-detailed inventory of their pantry. 

Pop Quiz:  Make a list of 10 items (and quantities) of what you think is in your pantry.  (no cheating…don’t look).  After your list is complete, compare your list to the actual contents. 

How did you do?  100% - you rock!  50% - average.  25% or less – you better keep reading.

I love organizing a pantry!  Why?  Because in just a few simple steps, a huge impact can be made.  And my experience has given me the gift of implementing simple systems in a short amount of time. 

Here are the few simple steps I was referring to above.

1. Take everything out of pantry. This is where the pantry may say BOO! to you but stay brave.  It is worth it. 

2. Toss/recycle/compost all expired, almost empty items.  Donate all items that are not expired but no one in your household will ever eat or you have duplicates that will not be consumed before they expire.

3.  Wipe down all the shelves and sweep the floor if needed.

4.  Return items to pantry, that belong in the pantry.  Do not put anything back that does not belong in there!

5.  Step back and admire your efforts.   And feel free to show it off to the rest of the family. 

Halloween may be scary but your pantry shouldn’t be!

Written by: JENNIFER GOWLER, DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS

 

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Too much storage!!! Is there such a thing? 

Too much storage!!! Is there such a thing? 

Yes, this is a real issue.

A big selling point to any living space is how much storage there is.  The reality is that we like our stuff and need a place for our stuff.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I moved to a new home last February and was so excited about the walk-in closet.  Having all my clothes (and my husband’s) in one closet and able to see them all, feels so great. 

Not having enough storage is a very common issue but over the years I see more and more cases of too much available storage space.  You may be asking how is that not a great thing?  Here is what I have observed as a professional organizer…

Too much storage can…

  • Make it difficult to find what you are looking for as there are more options to where it could be.

  • Increases the volume of stuff you purchase since space is not an issue.  A side effect of this is you increase waste as many bulk items may expire before they get used or you forget you have them and buy more.

  • Create more clutter – excess surface space just gives you more room to create “piles” that just stare at you and make you want to run away. 

  • Cause procrastination in downsizing.  Out of sight, out of mind….until you have to move and end up doing a stressful crash downsizing session or paying movers to move things you do not need or want.

These are just a few of the negative consequences of too much storage.  I’m sure you can come up with more once you start thinking about it.  You can acquire stuff to fill your storage or create storage to fit your stuff.  I am a big supporter of the later.  There are so many creative ways to create storage space when it is needed.  And a good purging session can take so much weight off the shoulders!

So, what is your situation?  Do you have just the right amount of storage?  Are there cabinets, closets, rooms that you have no idea what you would find in there?  Do you need to get those creative juices flowing (either yours or a professional organizers) and get smarter with the little storage you have? Come up with a plan and take action today – it will be well worth it.

 

By Jennifer Gowler, Project Manager 

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In Death Do We Organize

In Death Do We Organize

There are times when our organizational work requires an added element of care, especially when a family member has passed. Recently, this happened to me.

My father, Peter, passed at at 90 years young, seven years after my Mom. He had a good run and died as they say, with his boots on.  My sister, Janet, still living in the house was  paralyzed on how to move forward through all of Dads stuff. Though I consider myself a professional organizer, it hit differently in my own circumstance, my own family.


But, I put my Org & Relo hat on and dug in. It was truly a moving and therapeutic experience.
We all grieve differently, however I decided that being in action was needed for my healing. I guided my sister  through each room, drawer, closet and corner of the house. We sorted, purged, categorized and put aside Dad’s gems for family members to keep and cherish. It’s so much easier with someone who knows what they are doing by your side! We got through this process together and she is so grateful. In fact, the entire family is because no one else was able either by distance or health issues. 


As a Organization and Relocation Project Manager, please allow me to be by your side not only during difficult but any huge transitional times. I and our team will help you move forward too.

Written by: JD Farley, Project Manager, Professional Organizer

 

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Transforming your Junk Drawer into a Junk Door

Transforming your Junk Drawer into a Junk Door

One of the ways I like to control the junk drawer dilemma is by creating a junk door. On the door of our pantry I have taken a clear over the door shoe hanger and filled the LABELED pockets with various items such as tape measures, chip clips, small tools, string, tape, flashlights, and anything else that one needs quickly to complete a task.  It is very important that the pockets are labeled otherwise it becomes a free for all when items are being put back.  Our family really likes the junk door because they never have to hunt down random items.

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The Not So EMPTY Empty Nest

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One of the issues that comes up with the empty nest situation is what to do with the belongings of a child who is slightly nomadic but still needs a home base to store things. I have two at the moment and I have come up with a pretty good system to keep things orderly and accessible.

The first thing I do is wrangle them to spend at least half a day with me systematically going through their items and sorting into piles of keep, donate, and archive. I like to use The Container Store’s Deep Sweater box for clothing and larger items, and their regular Sweater Box for smaller things. Labeling with a label maker is essential to the process which makes it much easier to locate specific items. We then put the bins in a closet of their designated room, and then archival items we place in our storage room. It goes without saying that this process requires occasional editing and more purging.

We have found that this process makes it easy for them to either call me from the road and send them certain items, or when they do return they have a much easier time finding that flannel shirt they love.

Written By: Leslie Dietrich, Project Manager, Professional Organizer

The Art Of Organizing

You know how sometimes you walk into a house and it just feels good? People remark on how it has “great energy?” That simply doesn’t happen when you walk into a space that’s messy, chaotic, or overflowing with clutter. The energy is stale, and you feel off-balance the minute you open the door.  

At Organization & Relocation we spend our days increasing people’s productivity by organizing their homes and offices or relocating them--sometimes across town, sometimes across the country. We recommend movers, oversee the move (from pre-move purging to organizing the new space), make the beds, and hang the art. We make packing paper and moving boxes magically disappear. 

Throughout this the house becomes a home and the office becomes a place you look forward to spending time in. We want our clients to walk in, sit down, and feel that everything is in its place. We are committed to taking the stress out of the process and setting up organizational systems that work for them. Our motto is, “It’s all in the details,” because the art of creating a beautiful space that has only what you need and use comes down to the little things.  

However, organizing is not just about making sure everything is properly put away. It’s about creating beauty and sanctuary within a space. Even if you consider yourself among the creatively challenged, here are a few habits you can incorporate into your everyday life that will make organizing the kind of art you can master:

  • The Lifestyle Change: If you have less stuff, it naturally follows that you have less stuff to organize. Are you keeping that vase from Grandma just because it was hers even though you can’t stand it? When making a purchase, consider why you are buying it and whether you really need it. Be thoughtful.

  • The Art of Purging: Grab two trash bags, and walk around your house for 10 minutes. Label one bag “donate” and the other “trash.” Do you have piles of pens you never use because you make notes only on your phone? Do you have six spatulas but hardly ever cook? Be ruthless.

  • The Burning Questions: Ask yourself these three things when purging: Do I use it? Do I love it? Do I appreciate it? If you don’t get a resounding yes to any of them...get rid of it. Make room for things in your life that you really want. Be honest.

  • The Beauty of Colorizing: Use the same hangers, whichever style works for you, and organize clothes by genre and color from white to black along the color wheel to make each closet a work of art. Be detailed.

  • The Art of Art: Hang your art so that the center of the piece is 60” from the floor. Many people hang it too high, believing that it makes the room feel bigger. Your room will feel balanced, and the piece will show better. Be precise.

  • The Clutter-Free Home: Clear your surfaces and containerize, label, and vertically store meaningful items you absolutely must hang on to. Be selective.

I believe that organizing is a lifetime process, not a one-time event. You don’t have to devote an entire weekend to a massive project. Use ten minutes here, twenty minutes there. Do one drawer, one cabinet, one closet at a time. Try to impose order and beauty where there was none before.

As van Gogh pointed out, “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” That’s the true art of organizing; focusing on the details so the masterpiece can be revealed. 

Happy Organizing!

The Older You Get, The Less Stuff You Need

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I cannot seem to remember exactly where I heard this, but I recently read an article that made me think about the elderly and how much “stuff” they hold onto and why they should let most of it go. In order to achieve this necessary step in downsizing, you will need to identify what items bring you happiness and in order to achieve this, you will first need to define what makes you happy.

One thing I read was that when elderly people begin downsizing their belongings, they should not only hire a professional organizer to help facilitate this transition, but they should also keep a memory box/container of items that is known as their “throw out” box. As sad as it sounds, we all are going to eventually pass away and when that time comes, we don’t want our families to have to go through all of our belongings while trying to mourn their loss, so why not make it easier for them to enjoy the happy memories? This idea of the “throw out” box is as simple as it sounds - make a box dedicated to items/memories that only you, yourself, hold onto because of personal feelings or reasons you never shared with anyone else, that way when you are no longer with us, that will be the one box that your family knows won’t hurt your feelings if they just threw it out!

Also, another good tip would be to create bins for each person whom you want your belongings to live with :)

Whether your next phase in life is downsizing into a smaller home, moving into assisted living, or passing away - you shouldn’t have to worry about all of your “stuff” weighing you down!

Written by: Lindsay Gomez, Professional Organizer

Relocation – Love It or Leave It?

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If you have ever moved, chances are you have a good understanding of why they say moving is one of the most stressful life events.  Crazy enough – there are those people who love to move.  Are you a Love It or Leave It person when it comes to moving?

What to Love:

  • Fresh living space, and maybe better suited to your lifestyle

  • Opportunity to downsize and get rid of the belongings that are weighing you down

  • Opens up your life to new adventures

What to Leave:

  • Anxiety of changes and leaving your comfort zone

  • Worry of how everything will get done in time

  • Exhaustion from physically trying to get everything done yourself

  • Tension among all household members as they deal with the stress is different ways

  • Frustration of not being able to find items after the move

How can you learn to Love It?

  • Own less.  Not only will this benefit you financially for moving but you will reap the daily benefits of less stuff!

  • Make a list.  Having all the tasks listed in one place will ease your mind of worrying that something important will be forgotten until it is too late.

  • Hire help.  Organization & Relocation coordinates moves every week and has the process down to a science.  This not only give you the luxury of lifting a huge weight off your shoulders, but allows you to enjoy the daily lifestyle activities your family is used to with minimal interruption. 

If you haven’t guessed…we are definitely on the Love It side when it comes to moving.  What side are you on?

Written By: Jennifer Gowler, Org & Relo, Director of Operations

Prepare your Home for Fall with these 4 Tips

With Fall just around the corner, it's time to prepare your home for colder weather. Don't have time? Or feeling overwhelmed with clutter? Not to worry, give us a call at  303-448-9966 and schedule a home organization refresh with one of our professional teams today!

  • Beautify Your Bathroom: Avoid exposure to germs and bacteria by giving your bathroom a deep scrub before the moisture builds up with the fast approaching Fall months. 

  • Check for Drafts: Use a lighted candle around doors and windows and if you see a flicker, inspect for broken or cracked seals.

  • Furnace Inspection: Hire an HVAC professional to check heating efficiency, test for leaks and change the filter.

Organize the Shed: Summer filled up your shed space; time to sort, categorize, purge and organize summer gear. Move summer gear to the back and organize winter gear to the front for easy access.

Household Management Stats:

80%  of what we keep we rarely use, Agency Sales Magazine.

23%  of adults pay bills late and incur fees because they can’t find their bills, Harris Interactive.

40%  of housework can be eliminated by simply getting rid of clutter the National Soap and Detergent Association.

25%  of people with two-car garages fill it with too much stuff that they can’t park a car inside, U.S. Department of Energy.

80%  of household clutter is the result of disorganization, not lack of space, The National Soap and Detergent Association.

By: Analiese Ross, AMR Digital Marketing

What to do when the kids leave but their stuff stays?!

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One of the issues that comes up with the empty nest situation is what to do with the belongings of a child who is slightly nomadic but still needs a home base to store things. I have two at the moment and I have come up with a pretty good system to keep things orderly and accessible.

The first thing I do is wrangle them to spend at least half a day with me systematically going through their items and sorting into piles of keep, donate, and archive. I like to use The Container Store’s Deep Sweater box for clothing and larger items, and their regular Sweater Box for smaller things. Labeling with a label maker is essential to the process which makes it much easier to locate specific items. We then put the bins in a closet of their designated room, and then archival items we place in our storage room. It goes without saying that this process requires occasional editing and more purging.

We have found that this process makes it easy for them to either call me from the road and send them certain items, or when they do return they have a much easier time finding that flannel shirt they love.

Written By: Leslie Dietrich

Five Ways to Get your Kids Organized and Prepared for a Successful School Week!

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  1. Keep a Family Calendar – encourage your kids to write down big events, assignments and due dates on the calendar each week. On Sundays go over the events with your whole family to make sure everyone is prepared, organized and planning accordingly!

  2. Sort through returned schoolwork – Take a couple minutes each Sunday to go through your children’s backpacks with them and remove all old/returned schoolwork, trash, and unneeded items.  We recommend purchasing a bin for each child. As you go through returned schoolwork and projects they can place the keepsakes in their personal bin. At the end of the school year, you can look through the bin and choose which pieces to keep! *Our favorite bins are from The Container Store.

  3. Get ready the night before – Have your kids lie out their outfits and pack their backpacks the night before. This will help make Monday mornings run smoother for both you and the kids.

  4. Routine, Routine, Routine – Creating structure and routine will help your kids get organized and stay organized! Try creating a study space for your kids and set aside a period of time after school for homework. This is a distraction-free time when everyone is focused, quiet and working. Another place where routine is essential is around bedtime. A structured bedtime routine will allow them time to unwind, relax, and prepare for the next day (this is also a great time to for them to pick out their clothes and pack their backpacks for the next day)!

  5. Reward good behavior – Building good organizational skills isn’t always easy. Make sure to recognize and reward good behavior as you see fit! Once you have implemented these new strategies, encourage your kids to take initiative and begin these activities on their own, without your help! – Once they do, reward them!

Written by: Analiese Ross, AMR Digital Marketing

Moving Can be Fun!

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Moving always seems to have the connotation of chaotic and stressful, but what people don't tell you is that it can all be fun and enjoyable if you get organized prior to the big move! Hiring a professional organizer to help facilitate your move will impact your life in more ways than one. Not only will you be able to be start fresh in a new home, but your mind will be reset as well, which will free up more energy for you to take on more things you enjoy and living the life you want to live!

Pre-move prep is SO important! It's simple - why pack, unpack and organize the items you don't even want or need? That's where we come in and help you go through all of your items and help you toss what you don't need in the new space!

This is one of my personal favorites, besides unpacking and organizing a kitchen, because I love getting people ready to move onto a new chapter in their lives - it is so rewarding to me!

If there’s one thing that I hear all too often after a move, it’s “Gosh, I wish we would have hired you guys to help us sort our stuff before we moved, so that we wouldn’t have paid for all this stuff to be moved and unpacked just to be gone through again and realize we didn’t even need this in the first place!”

One way that I maintain this “on-going pre-move prep” is by living in an organized space and only keeping items that I love and use often! That way - when it comes time to move, it will bring me joy and happiness to bring all of my “stuff” to a new home :)

So, who is ready to get organized for a move, now?!

By: Lindsay Fournet, Professional Organizer

Back to School Already?!

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3 WAYS KIDS USE ORGANIZATION SKILLS TO LEARN

(By Amanda Morin, Understood for Learning & Attention Issues)

1. Following Directions

Following through on directions requires kids to do two things: focus on what needs to be done and come up with a game plan to do it. Both of these require mental organization and planning.

2. Literacy Learning

Literacy, requires a number of organization strategies. For kids to read books and write, they have to keep track of many things at once: characters and their relationships, plot, sequences of events, supporting details and the main idea. If your child struggles with organization she may not be able to gather all that information and organize it. Labeling organizing containers within your home is a great way to help kids learn letters and words!

3. Learning Math

Kids have to use organization skills to learn math because it’s a very organized subject. There are rules and procedures to follow all along the way. Math also involves organizing information based on relationships, such as sorting things into groups by size, color or shape.

Organization is a muscle to be exercised!

When I turned 30 I had my first real taste of adulting. Living in LA at the time, I was a regional manager for an upscale heath and fitness company, enjoying my first ‘big kid’ job and the bump in income that came with that.  It was what I had been dreaming of after being a poor college kid, then struggling to find my place in the workforce following that. But success wasn’t exactly as I had pictured it would be - instead of relief there was a level of stress I didn’t expect.  Money was rolling in but bills went unpaid and debt mounted, mail and important notices were lost.  I couldn’t keep up with the increasing stream of emails, voicemails and text messages that were streaming in, business or personal.  My lack of organizational skills were blowing up in my face as my work schedule became more and more demanding.  I needed help in a major way.  So I did something very LA and hired a personal assistant.  

Enter Caitlyn; my hero and organizing angel.  At the time I didn’t know I would be getting an education in organizing, nor would Caitlyn have described herself as a professional organizer, but that’s what she really was.  Caitlyn brought me into the digital world with calendars and notes, helped me purge old and unnecessary papers, and introduced me to budgeting software and automated bill pay.  The beginnings of bringing order into my life were difficult and, at first, I kept falling off the wagon.  Slowly but surely, though, I became better at keeping myself together.  I was getting stronger and stronger in my organizational habits, which was leading to a more productive and stress-free life. Now 10 years, 2 cities and a career change later, I look back and I’m so thankful I was able to learn the skills to keep myself from plunging further into stress and debt.  With the help from an outside perspective I was able develop a stronger process for order and more freedom in my life.  So begin now, and strengthen your organizational skills for maximum mental health and vitality in the long run! 

Written by: Amy Young, Project Coordinator, Professional Organizer

6 Steps to Simplify Your Space

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Here are six S-I-M-P-L-E ways you can show the clutter in your life who’s really in charge.

Start - If you’re so overwhelmed that you don’t know where to begin, try starting with one small area that haunts you the most--a section of kitchen counter, a small drawer.

Integrate - Pick up five things, and return them to their proper location. These should be items you’re used to seeing deposited on counters or floors; mail, the dog’s leash, your daughter’s hair clip, random sport socks. If you don’t have a designated place for them, think about one that would suit, and start using it all the time.

Maybe - Give yourself the gift of a “Maybe” box that you can put things in for now. Sometimes, even though we know we should get rid of something, we can’t quite let it go. Look at the random selection you’ve kept a few months down the road--chances are it will all go straight to donation.

Purchase Wisely - Be a more conscious shopper so that you’re not filling your decluttered home with more clutter. Whenever you see something you want, add it to an ongoing list with the date you first saw it, and then revisit the list 30 days later. You may find when you check back that the urge to purchase it has gone.

Lessen – studies show that less visual clutter leads to less overwhelm.  Only display items that are beautiful to you or that bring back a wonderful memory.

Eliminate - Just get rid of these things--I mean, seriously: why are you keeping them? 

6 ITEMS TO PART WITH TODAY!

  • Ø  Trash

  • Ø  Broken items

  • Ø  Duplicates                                       

  • Ø  Items you hate

  • Ø  Gifts you never bonded with

  • Ø  Any gadget unused for a year

Living in a cluttered home or trying to work in a cluttered office is an exercise in frustration. Car keys get swallowed up, you can’t locate your important report in time for your meeting, or you replace something you can’t find only to have the original turn up shortly after. Isn’t that the worst? Make sure that never happens again by getting clutter under S-I-M-P-L-E control... one random sport sock at a time.

Written By: Jennifer Gowler, Project Manager, Professional Organizer

Image by Chris Nyce

A Professional Organizer's Guide to Seamless Travel

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A Professional Organizer's Guide to Seamless Travel

1. Get ahead of the game

Before your journey begins, research the conditions and requirements for your trip.  Start a checklist of basic needs so you don’t hurriedly over pack at the last minute.   If you travel frequently create a packing list that you can use as a template with a section for  “necessities” and a section for “trip-specific” items.  Another tip for jet-setters: keep a separate travel kit of flight compliant toiletries.  You’re wasting precious time in life if you’re packing toiletries each and every time you venture out.  

2. Pack light

It’s time to channel those capsule wardrobe lessons into your travel.  Clothing choices should be lightweight, versatile, climate appropriate and neutral in color.  Think ‘little black dress’ of travel.  The less stuff you struggle with carrying, the more you can maximize your experience!  Carrying a purse = rookie mistake.  Invest in a stylish hip slung carrier (yes, a fanny pack) to keep your documents close and credits cards protected and easy to access.  Find super cute packs here: https://tandl.me/2NW6cra

3. Use the airline app

I know you aren’t still printing your boarding passes.  Right?  

4. Send out your personal press release

Let your friends/family/caretakers know the details of your travel.  Schedule the pet and house sitting early, vacation departure dates always come faster than you think.  Alert your credit card companies that you’re traveling, automate your bills, and pause your memberships.  Again, if you travel frequently, this list of ‘travel to-do’s’ should be kept as a template in your computer to carry out swiftly with every trip you plan.  This should only take you minutes after you set up your process, and will save you countless hours. 

5. Now that you are so incredibly organized, you can truly detach and get the deep rejuvenation benefits that well-planned travel can offer.  Bon voyage! 

Written by: Amy Young, Project Coordinator

What "Delights" You?

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What “delights” you?  Have you taken the time to ask yourself this question?  Is delight a luxury that you can’t imagine happening? Last fall we attended the Boulder Month of Modern events and the key word this year was “delight”.  It got me thinking about a few things.

  1. When and how do I see delight in my clients?  It’s that look of relief when they walk into a clean, organized space that was once a dumping ground with no systems at all (or systems that got buried).  It’s that look of proudness when we are back months later for touch-ups and they realize the systems are still working and there is not a lot of work for us.  Just a quick maintenance session and they are off and rolling again.  It’s seeing them stand up taller when that weight of “stuff” is lifted off their shoulders.

  2. What delights me?  Every day I am focused on what can I do to make my client’s experience delight.  That is part of my job that I love but where else do I find my delight?  I find delight in spending time with my husband, which could be hiking or maybe playing a game of cribbage.  I delight in volunteering, right now with 1st and 2nd graders.  I delight in socializing with my friends.  I delight in re-folding all my sweaters (had to through some organizing thing since I am a professional organizer 😊). 

As I started to make this list I noticed that delight is not usually found in items or possessions yet in experiences and the spaces around us. And it is not a luxury that only few people can afford.  It is accessible to all of us.  It is a feeling that we can create for ourselves in so many ways.  And a great feeling it is!  What delights you?

Written by: Jennifer Vierow Gowler, Project Manager & Professional Organizer

Child’s Memory Box, a Gift of Love

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As a parent, you know there are many precious baby objects that can get lost as the years fly by, especially in the very early years.

How can we capture these items besides in a photograph?

One of our families most precious possessions is a Memory Box of our two sons baby years, check this out! 

We have a piece of their hospital blankets, first hats, shoes, toys they chewed on, hair and even teeth (!) and other prized possessions that matter to our family.

All you need to do is find an old or new printer drawer of a size to your liking. 

But, even before that, create a box or container to store items with meaning in one location. 

When ready, look back in this box and take out the best and most loved pieces and place in the printer’s drawer, you can get all sizes or have one made. 

Purchase cut plexiglass fit to size over the drawer to keep out dust and stay clean. 

Add a bit of trim and you have a FANTASTIC piece of history that your children and many generations to come will cherish.

Happy days!

By: JD Farley, Project Manager & Professional Organizer 

Master 4th of July With These Party Planning Hacks!

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1. Take Advantage of Technology!

Skip the envelopes and stamps. Instead, Use a website such as evite.com or punchbowl.com to send free email invitations and keep track of your guest list. Also, post the event on your Facebook page and invite your friends from there.


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2. Do as much in advance as possible!

BBQing is always an easy and festive option for the fourth. Do your best to prepare everything ahead of time so all you have to do it throw it on the grill. Consider sauces and side dishes that can be made the day before. Frozen treats are also great options.



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3. Make it a Group Effort!

Putting on a 4th of July party doesn't mean you have to do everything. Ask your guests to bring side dishes and drinks, while you provide the hamburgers, hot dogs and anything else you want on the grill. Or encourage them to bring their favorite yard games and fireworks!




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4. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

You can pretty much count on the Fourth of July to be sizzling! Make sure their are plenty of drinks available (water included). As the host or hostess, you don’t want to be mixing drinks all day or night. Instead, try a large-batch cocktail like a festive sangria that you can mix up the night before!

Downsizing your SPACE, Up sizing your WORLD

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If you had said to me ten years ago, I'd be living in a 1,014 square foot condo in a HIGH RISE no less, I would have fallen of my chair! What? Really?

Yes, really.

Much has been written about downsizing, the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of leaving the familiar, the steady, the home.

Yet, on the other side of this coin, treasures many have not dreamed of, I certainly didn't, are there for the taking.

We brought up our sons in suburban Connecticut, not far from the high school. WE had gardens, land, an outdoor shower, (yes, I miss that a lot), a basement, an attic and lots and lots of stuff. A typical American family rising two kids with all the accoutrements, paraphernalia, things; sports equipment, school items, toys, games, you name it, along the way during those precious years. 

Then the kids hit the college scene, grew up faster than my heart could take, secured jobs, their own insurance (YES!) and the family home, became a little sad, a little lonely, though still safe for my way of being.

When my husband got a job offer to Denver, we thought, how can we leave this place? How can we? But we did!

As the years went by, from the lovely Eastern home in Connecticut to our fabulous Western pad in Denver, the "things' we thought were so precious began to fade, began to become heavy. 

One by one, year by year, we starting shredding, keeping the things we LOVE, USE and TRULY WANT.  And you know what? The freedom from our stuff has given us freedom for so much more! 

Rather than raking leaves, we hit the art museums! Rather than shovel snow, we are skiing!  Rather than cleaning out the garage, we are playing golf!! 

I treasure our magnificent years in Connecticut and still get teary eyed at those fantastic memories. But, my husband and I decided that WE, must make new memories and see our beautiful world in a bigger way, and I'm so glad we did. 

By: JD Farley, Project Manager & Professional Organizer