Wednesday, May 11, 2011

RS Activity: Get Organized

Devon's vertical file
Tuesday evening we enjoyed the talents of VF 2nd ward's Tammy Small. She is a professional organizer and shared with us her method of keep her home in order.

She has gleaned ideas from many books over the years but especially likes Confessions of an Organized Homemaker, by Deneice Schofield. [I just read Throw Out 50 Things, by Gail Blanke and highly recommend it too.]

How to start organizing your home
She starts by defining the function of the space. Do you need a drawer full of hubby's tools in the kitchen?

Next choose centers for each space. A baking area in the kitchen, a bill-paying area, etc.

Get 5 bags or boxes and label them.
1. Stays based on the function.
2. Throw away.
3. Give away, donate, sell (only if you really will do it).
4. Not sure.
5. Elsewhere.

Start in one corner of the room and work your way around filling up the boxes/bags. Don't stop to take something to another room. You might get distracted. Tammy does this once or twice a year. She says you'll find you have extra cupboard space.

Tame paper avalanche
One specific example, children's artwork and papers: Display the latest pic on a "clothesline" with clothes pins. Put other papers in a box. When the box is full (or at least twice during the school year) sit with the child and let them choose their favorites to keep. Take a picture of your child with their social studies poster or science fair project for the memories, then toss the item. The idea is to sincerely validate and praise, then give them choices but within a limited space. The same goes for collections, hubbies hobbies, the garage, etc.

She had some great stories to tell and we're glad she came! Thanks Tammy!

Strawberry shortcake made for a delicious ending. Thanks Charity!


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