Saturday, December 27, 2014

Wrapping up the Holidays!

Ah December 27th.  Holiday Spirit is in the air and New Year's is literally right around the corner!  It's also time to start prepping for the next holiday season!  May as well crank up the Christmas songs on Pandora and give yourself a boost of productivity for next season.  Check out my post from last year "Merry New Year:  10 Things To Do to Prep for Next Christmas."
Cheers to a productive and organized 2015!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Shedding the Plastic (Bags)

Plastic.  It's not good for us or the environment.  Yet, it creeps into our lives.  If you live in California, be prepared to say goodbye to plastic shopping bags being provided to you in 2015.  Stock up on reusables and make new habits now so it's an easy transition next summer.  Somehow I am still inundated with plastic bags.  This morning I decided enough is enough.  Do you have a drawer that looks like this?

I gathered up all of the bags that were not in my gingham bag holder and recycled them.  The bag holder is my physical limiter for bags.  If I get more than what fits in that holder, they will be recycled.  I anticipate using these all up soon, and filling that holder up with a more environmentally friendly option.  I have started using the Bag to Nature liners which are fully compostable and oh so much better for our earth.

Next step is to stop the plastic from coming in the house.  This is perhaps the hardest part!  We can be so accustomed to just running in a store and not bringing in bags.  Even if they are in the car, it takes an effort to make bringing the bags in a habit.  I got good at bringing my bag to to the grocery store, but you have to remember to bring them to other shopping venues too like the mall, drug stores etc.   I like to keep one like this in my purse:

Also, don't forget your reusable produce bags!


You Only Live Once.  This saying immediately brings visions of living life to the full, enjoying every moment, doing all the fun stuff, doing what makes you happy, and making decisions to go after dreams, goals, or perhaps simply just a new hairstyle!  Last weekend was packed with just fun and activities for our family.  But boy am I paying for it now!  Don't get me wrong, I am glad it was packed with all the fun stuff.  But reality set in on Monday and the cleaning and catch up must be done.  With a husband working extra hours, busyness of the holiday season, and the normal every day upkeep of kids, household (plus throw in a few extra random events and to-do's), life can seem just downright overwhelming.  When life hits you full force, every minute seems filled up and even simple tasks like keeping up with dishes and laundry can be hard.  It's times like these that renew my passion in living simply even more.  Own less, do more.  When we have less stuff to take care of, wash, dust, account for, it frees time up to focus on the truly important stuff.  It amazes me how many times I've needed to peel down the layers of stuff, and to-do's like an onion.  Once I purge one area of the house or life, I find other things I need to get rid of.  Also, isn't it amazing how stuff just creeps into life?  Paperwork is a repeat offender, and my favorite - all of the tiny little plastic things that kids seem to be a magnet for.  Have a container or treasure box for a few these things, and let the kids pick their treasures.  I often have to just sneak a bunch of that stuff (the pieces that were not deemed treasure) in the trash or recycle bin.

Conclusion:  I want to do all the fun stuff, and minimize the no-so-fun stuff.  To make that happen, focus on holding on to the things and people in life that really matter and be persistent in letting go of the things that take too much of your precious time.   Make it a daily habit to get rid of things, and you will be on your way to maximizing your YOLO factor.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Neat Doctor's Holiday Shopping Guide 2014

The Holidays are here!  Here are a few of my favorite gifts of organization for the season. Enjoy!

Card Cubby - My purse would not be the same without my Card Cubby!  Keep all of your gift cards, punch cards, and discount cards in the Card Cubby instead of cluttering up your wallet.  There are alphabetical dividers for quick access and they come in a variety of color options. 

Coupon Oganizer - This coupon organizer is so versatile!  Not only is is great for coupons, but it also serves as a great cash envelope system - only you don't need envelopes as this keeps your cash organized in easy access categories.  Added bonus - it hangs on a grocery cart!

Carabiner Clip - This makes a great stocking stuffer!  I don't know what I would do without one of these on my keychain.  It hooks to my purse & belt loop, keeps my keys handy and is handy in loss prevention of keys as well. 

Home and Office Labeler - A must have!  You can't go wrong with the Brother P-Touch, simple and easy to use.

Clever Shopper - Nix the plastic (and paper!) shopping bags and opt for reusables whenever possible.  It's a great way to foster eco-friendliness.  I love this bag because it hangs on the cart, holds up to 40lbs and comes in a variety of patterns.  If you live in California, we've got the upcoming plastic bag ban coming up in 2015.  Prepare now with this clever and cute shopper! 
Clever Container Product Image

Also check out my Clever Container website for even more fabulous items!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Check out my "5 Tips for Simplifying Your Holidays" Over at MOMS of Conejo Valley!

If you are a Mom in the Conejo Valley, California, go check out the MOMS of Conejo Valley site and Facebook page & group.  There is a wealth of info. there for local moms, as well as lots of support!  They are also featuring my holiday tips on the blog this week!