Kon Mari…it’s not just for your clothes!

I've always prided myself on being uber-organized.  When Marie Kondo's book - The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing - came out, I wasn't too interested in reading it.  I thought I knew all about decluttering and organizing.  Then she wrote another book: Spark Joy:  An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up.  Again, not interested.  And, then I came across her books at the library.  I read them...both of them.  I tried her methods, starting with my clothes.  I was amazed at the pile that grew before me.
Rolled up bath towels standing up in an oval basket.

After I sparked joy in my wardrobe, I moved on - in the right order of course - and got to my towels.  My linen closet was sacred ground...folded towels piled neatly just like t-shirts at Gap.  Ever grab your favorite color from the middle of the pile?  If you have, you know what happens.  To spark joy, I changed it up.  Kon Mari suggests folding your towels in thirds and standing them up, which I did for my hand towels, but, for my bath towels, I rolled them up and stood them up in a oval basket and placed on an open shelf in the bathroom.  Voila!  Grab and go take a shower!!  And, I've got the kids rolling up those towels fresh from the laundry and putting them in the basket for their next use.

Hand towels, folded in thirds, standing up in rectangular basket.

So, the hand towels are now standing up in a rectangular basket, again on an open shelf and ready to be grabbed.    The washcloths are housed in the same way.  Easy peasy.  Easy to grab, easy to put away.

Kitchen towels, folded in thirds, standing up in drawer.

And, what about the kitchen towels?  Again, the pride of the kitchen towel drawer was decimated. No more folded towels...some buried in the drawer...never to see the light of day.  But, now, here they are...folded in thirds.  I can easily grab...and, what a concept, can color coordinate.

My quest for ease continues.  If you follow Kon Mari, what has worked for you?  What has been a game-changer?

12 Items to Put Into Your Fridge

Once you've cleared your fridge of those items that don't need to be in there (see my previous post), then it's time to fill up all that space with items you can, and should, put in your fridge.
  1. LAZY SUSAN / TURNTABLE - this has been a game-changer for us.  We are a nut butter family: peanut, almond, cashew and more.  But, whatever you put on this,  it will change your whole fridge set-up.  Some people put yogurt and other dairy items on here and stack 'em up.  I bought ours at Bed Bath & Beyond for less than $7.  We have a Copco 12-inch non-skid turntable, and, if you use a 20% coupon for Bed Bath & Beyond, with tax, you pay less than $7.  There's no more reaching or digging in the back...you can see what you need at eye-level. (more…)

10 Items to Remove from Your Fridge

I'm guilty.  I like to put random items in the fridge.  For years, I put ground coffee in the fridge.  And, then of course there was my tray of nail polish.  And those batteries.  I've changed my ways though not only because these items were taking up precious space in my fridge, but also because they didn't need to be in the fridge.  Here's 10 items you can take out right now...
  1. BATTERIES - extreme temps can lessen their performance...find a room-temperature place for your batteries.  And, while you're at it, find an organizer to put your batteries in...it doesn't have to be fancy. I found this one at Joann's...it's actually for organizing embroidery floss.  I also store a small Philips screwdriver with my batteries just in case the battery compartment has a screw on it.
  2. BREAD - the fridge actually dries the bread out...keep about 4 days worth of bread out at room temperature and freeze the rest. (more…)

10 Uses for Zip-Up Sheet, Bedding, Comforter Plastic Bags

I love buying new bedding...from new sheets to a new mattress pad.  There's something about the crispness of new bed linens that brings me joy.  It's the little things sometimes.  And, what comes with the purchase of new bedding is a new zippered plastic bag!  What can I put in this one?  These bags are ideal for storing so many items because not only can you see what's in the bag, but you can also push and shove into a space to make it fit in a closet, a drawer, your trunk, wherever.  So, I've come up with a list of uses for these bags...if you have ideas, please comment below...
  1. CRAFTING ITEMS - the smaller pillowcase-sized bags are perfect for pencils, crayons, markers, paintbrushes, glue, duct tape and so much more.  Fabric, yarn, lace and more fit into the larger bags for your sewing, knitting, crochet, quilting and needlepoint projects.  I have a plethora of fabric scraps which I keep in a sheet-set-sized bag 'cause I can pile the fabric in and still see what's in there.
  2. CLOTHING - store your seasonal clothes in these bags - hosiery, sweaters, ski clothes, and more.  And, if you have small children, toss one of these bags in your trunk filled up with a clean change of clothes for that just-in-case surprise!  Change your child into the clean clothes and put the soiled clothes in the bag to take home and wash.  Later, you can then wash the bag or just wipe down with a Lysol wipe. (more…)

3 Ways to Organize Your Family…and keep them in-the-know!

With everyone in the house going a different direction these days, it's imperative to keep them all in-the-know...without the daily question "what's up for today?"  And, it's not just the kids who ask that question. You know who I mean.


My first line of defense is my old-school planner.  I order a daily planner every December from Costco's Photo Center online.  The planner is the root of all information for our family, where appointments are penciled in and parties and sporting events and activities and so much more.  All of this info then gets transferred to two key tools: the wall calendar and my Google calendar.