Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Organizing Your Life in the New Year

Organizing is one of my favorite hobbies so I love this time of year when it feels like you get a fresh start with everything.  Time to make new lists, accomplish new things and tackle inside projects that are hard to do when the weather is great.  I think I'd really enjoy going to people's houses and reorganizing their spaces for them.  I love containers, note pads, systems and I know my house runs better when things are organized.

 Here's how I keep myself and my family organized on PAPER:
My favorite types of note pads -
yellow legal pads - bought in bulk from Sams
magnetic $1 note pads from Target or Michaels
Personalized notepads
Various sized post-it notes

 Printable blog calendar - I write blog posts ideas at the bottom, blog post titles on the day and then note link ups, guest posts, holidays, etc.

My beloved Gallery Leather Planner - I always find these at TJ Maxx for under $10 and any bookstore carries them.  My husband always gives it to me for a Christmas gift with a note about all the exciting things coming ahead in the new year.  It's sweet to go back and read his messages to me year after year.  
I love the format of blank days and a week at a glance.
I write daily to do lists,
keep track of birthdays, anniversaries and holidays.
make note of appointments or outings in pink
and my husband's schedule in blue.

I'd seriously be lost without my planner because I'm not good at memorizing birth dates and just remembering important events in my head.

Organizing My HOUSE:

My sister sent me a text last week that said she cleaned out her spice cabinet and was grossed out to find spices that expired in 2010!  I couldn't remember the last time I looked at dates on my spices so I made a note to clean out my spice drawer asap.  Turns out I had some that expired in 2008.  Thankfully, it was nothing that I used anymore, but gross none the less.

Here's my cleaned out spice drawer
(with a fresh dusting of cinnamon sprinkled throughout thanks to one toddler)
 Throwing out all of my expired spices gave me plenty of room in my drawer.

This one project inspired me to look around my house and get busy organizing any areas that were:
1. no longer working well for us
2. any areas that were feeling messy and neglected

My list with no specific timeline to complete.
I hunt it in my office area to constantly remind me of things to be done.
My husband was even inspired to start working on going through his closet after all of my reorganizing.
 The worst closet in our house was definitely our hall/coat/craft closet.  In our previous house each of those things had their own separate area so it has been a mess trying to combine all of them.  I've been putting it off for months and decided I had to work on it.

You see chaos in the bins, coats on the floor, blankets a mess and I was not really 100% what had made its way into this space.  It had kind of become a dumping ground/hiding spot.

I didn't relocate many items.  I just organized the contents of the baskets so they made sense and made sure that everything had a spot.  I'm happy to report that I now know what is in the closet and can easily access it anytime.

 The last spot I worked on was our pantry.
We've got a nice, tall cabinet that's really deep for a pantry, but things tend to get lost or buried.
I pulled everything out of the baking section, took inventory and reorganized the space.  The most used things were moved to the front and the items that were rarely used moved to the back.
I made a list of all the desserts/treats I had on hand to make so I wasn't tempted to buy duplicate items the next time I was at the store.  Since this picture was taken I found a small container to hold all of the chocolate chips you see up front.
BEFORE                                                            AFTER

What areas of your house bug you?
Are there certain organizing projects you've been putting off??
Make yourself a to do list and start working on it in the new year.
I wish I could show up at your houses to help you :)


  1. I've been really organizing things a lot lately. I went through and organized my desk at work. I tackled the papers at home. Yesterday I organized Jack's sock drawer. I've done our closets recently and my beauty drawer. The one thing I haven't tackled (and really don't want to) is Jack's toys. He has a lot of toys (like most toddlers). He doesn't play with them all and there is definitely some that could be given away. The problem is with living in such a small town there isn't a place nearby to drop giveaway items at. I need to do it and then store the giveaway items and then the next time I head north I need to bring them with me. You know how that goes though-you usually forget. I just need to make myself do it and I know it will make me feel so much better.

  2. I found a list on Pinterest where you get rid of 100 items in 100 days. Of course I'm not following it every day, but I have been following the list of things I do need to get rid of. It definitely helps to go little by little so you aren't overwhelmed by it all!

  3. When I saw this post on my Twitter feed this morning, I couldn't wait to read it! I love your planner systems - that leather planner is beautiful. Way to go on the cabinet and closet projects! Before and after pictures always make me so proud of my work! It's crazy how quickly we end up with piles of expired spices - I've had the same thing happen to me over the years!

    Whitney @ Come Home For Comfort

  4. I love this post as organizing is one of my favorite things to do as well! There are so many drawers, closets and cubbies on my list this winter! You've done a wonderful job and isn't it such a good feeling! And let's talk about paper, planners and calendars, no computer can ever replace them! LOL

  5. oh girl, this has been my LIFE the past few months! Clean out clean out clean out. And I've been ruthless at times. haha Baby boy has claimed my remaining spare storage spot so A LOT has had to go! And it feels great. I hear ya on the spice cabinet. I'm embarrassed to admit that I randomly started looking at best by dates on canned goods a few weeks ago and after cleaning out, my pantry is like half empty now. yikes. I love the Emily Ley tip a day thing on Instagram with a clean out tip for each day right now!

  6. I really need to get organised my house is full of clutter right now and things are just thrown everywhere it is driving me insane. I just can't seem to find the time to devote to organising things, its such a boring task (for me personally) that I always put it off. So if you want to organise my things then be my guest ha!

  7. I cannot WAIT to organize! I've been meaning to clean and organize for weeks now but just don't seem to have the time or energy. Hopefully I'll get snowed in this weekend and will tear that house apart!

    Lauren :)

  8. I heart organization and suddenly I now want to go clean out my spices.... lol. My baking cabinet is always so easy to get messed up. Probably because I use it ALL the time. I had a ton of donation stuff that was piled up too and I finally took it on Sunday. Once Marissa's room is put back together I'd like to tackle some more spaces in the house!

  9. Spices definitely can pile up! I cleaned out ours not too long ago. You have done a great job organizing! I love a good paper to-do list!

  10. I had a similar experience as you did with spices, but with lotions and stuff in my bathroom. Who knew lotion could expire?! You did a great job reorganizing and decluttering! I was able to go through everything in my kitchen, but my hall closet and wardrobe definitely need an overhaul soon!

  11. I love this. Target dollar spot magnetic note pads are the best. I hate having stuff everywhere and am always wanting to throw away everything we own. :) I just wish everything had a place and nothing was 'out' unless it's being used. But I guess thats impossible - so I live in the chaos.

  12. If stored at room temperature and with low humidity, spices will last for years and years. They may have a decrease in quality, though.


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