Declutter & Donate on ABC

What a joy it was to be on the Morning Blend with Natalie & Carley discussing two of my favorite things; Decluttering & Donating. 

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We all hold on to things for different reasons. Whatever the reason, items can clutter our space and mind, causing anxiety and stress. At Simplicity our goal is to help our busy clients identify what items they need, discard the rest & implement organizing solutions that work for their lifestyle. 

Discarding can be a scary task, but it brings about great freedom. 

You may hold on to items because you know how much money you spent  or because you feel guilty. . maybe it was a gift. 

Money and guilt should not be a good enough reason to keep items around that serve you no purpose & create stress in your space. 

Giving back is more fun when it is personal. Many charities in Tampa Bay have specific needs which means you can rest knowing your belongings will live another life and bless someone else in need!

Charities Simplicity loves!!!

1. Vintage Thrift Store

Proceeds benefit the Ybor Dream Center, an after school enrichment program with an emphasis on leadership and integrity. 

What items? All household items (furniture, clothing, toys, yard equipment and so much more) They will pick up big items from your home! 

Contact 813-265-4151 

2. Dress for Success

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Assisted over 20,000 women dress professionally for interviews to further their careers. They also  support women through career development. 

What items? Women's business attire

Drop Off Locations: https://dressforsuccess.org/affiliate-list/

3. Urban E

 

Need a place to recycle unused electronics? This is the perfect place. 

Contact: 813-501-9346

4. Humane Society of Tampa Bay

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Who doesn't love animals? Your worn-out linens, towels and pillows make a great bed for the puppies and kittens at the Humane Society. 

Wish List: https://humanesocietytampa.org/wishlist/

Drop off location: 3607 N. Armenia Avenue Tampa, FL 33607

 

Travel Organizing Tips for Men

It’s time to focus on the men. Let’s talk about your suit jacket and dress shirt. 

What is the best way to pack a suit in a carry on? 

1. Suit Jacket 

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Step 1 & 2: Hold the jacket up by the shoulders looking at the back.

Step 3 & 4: Tuck the Left shoulder inside out. Take the Right shoulder and insert into the Left. (Still look at the back of the jacket.)

Step 5 & 6: Get the lapels to overlap (Right side of the jacket should be tucked inside the left.) 

Step 7 & 8: Fold once horizontally & pack on the top of your carry on (last item in).

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2. Dress Shirt

Step 1: Lay shirt face down on a flat surface. 

Step 2: Fold the right sleeve 2/3 of the way over on the left sleeve. 

Step 3: Fold right sleeve at the shoulder, lining the edge of the arm up with edge of the body of shirt.

Step 4 & 5: Repeat steps 2 & 3 for the left sleeve.

Step 6: Take bottom of the shirt and fold horizontally up to the collar.

Step 7: Flip shirt over so you can see the collar. Button the top button.

Lastly pack a steamer for those last minute touch ups! 

Https://m.bedbathandbeyond.com/m/product/joy-mangano-my-little-steamer-go-mini-reg-hand-steamer/3277448

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I hope you found these tips helpful! Next week, learn where to pack your socks, tie and belt.

Mail Organizing Tips

We still get a lot of snail mail. This mail requires attention. Here are three ways to simplify your mail organizing process. 

1. Go paperless with companies that give you an option. Ex: bank statements, credit card statements, investment statements.  

*** If you do this make sure to once a year download and save to your computer the year end statements for your record.  

 

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2. Recycle 90%

90% of the snail mail we receive is junk. Practice immediately sorting through the mail when you pick it up from the mail box. This will save you a lot of clutter down the road. Keep only what you need and recycle the rest.  Ex: coupon books, magazines, advertisements 

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3. Pay Bills, Reconcile then Shred 

Pay your bills right away, wait for the transaction to show up on your credit card statement then shred the invoice.  If you need the invoice for a tax write-off scan the invoice and save to a desktop folder labeled 2018 Deductions. 

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I hope your found these simple mail organizing tips helpful. Next week will be about organizing your computer desktop! 

 

Master Closet Organizing Tips and Tricks

Jewelry organization    It is helpful to see your costume jewelry. Hanging it on the wall will increase how much you use the jewelry you own. 

Jewelry organization  

It is helpful to see your costume jewelry. Hanging it on the wall will increase how much you use the jewelry you own. 

Step stool    It’s hard to reach the top shelf. Help yourself out by purchasing a step stool. 

Step stool  

It’s hard to reach the top shelf. Help yourself out by purchasing a step stool. 

Shoes  Need extra shoe storage ladies? Try hanging a towel rod six inches from the ceiling and hook heels over that you don't use often. Men, try installing floating shelves. 

Shoes

Need extra shoe storage ladies? Try hanging a towel rod six inches from the ceiling and hook heels over that you don't use often. Men, try installing floating shelves. 

Hooks everywhere    I love wall hooks and door hooks. It is great for holding purses, towels, bathrobes and workoutclothes you want to air dry. 

Hooks everywhere  

I love wall hooks and door hooks. It is great for holding purses, towels, bathrobes and workoutclothes you want to air dry. 

Baskets   Use plastic or wicker, whichever you prefer to store winter, beach, alternate sizes and keepsake items. 

Baskets 

Use plastic or wicker, whichever you prefer to store winter, beach, alternate sizes and keepsake items. 

Sterilite medium and deep baskets work well in every space.   http://amzn.to/2uVn4mQ    http://amzn.to/2vJIbsZ

Sterilite medium and deep baskets work well in every space.

http://amzn.to/2uVn4mQ

http://amzn.to/2vJIbsZ

Best Organizing Hacks for Any Space

1. Over buying

Number one mistake people make when organizing themselves is purchasing storage first. 

I understand the Container Store is beautiful and potentially inspiring, but hold off. 

Why? 

When you organize you free up space because you identify what you can live without. 

Also how do you know what to buy if you don’t know what you need to provide a home for? 

 

2. Organizing in the proper order.  

Sort - Group or categorize items so you can see how much you have of each item. It will make the discarding decisions easier.  

Discard - Do you need it? Is it useful? Does it bring you joy? If no, let it go! There are wonderful charities listed on the home page. 

Organize with system - now you count how many bins you need and what size based on what you’re keeping and where. 

 

This client organized their pantry all by themselves and waited to buy the real bins until the end! Great job, very beautiful.  

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Traveling Hacks: Outfits

Ever dread packing for a trip?

Are you a netorious over packer? 

Do you forget things? 

Here are some simple tips. 

1. Grab a sheet of paper and write down

day 1

day 2

day 3 . . .etc

2. Next to each day think about the activities you have planned, jot down what kind of outfit you need for those activities.

Day 1: travel outfit, formal dinner outfit

Day 2: workout outfit, going to the movies outfit 

This may seem silly but it will ensure you need exactly what you need. 

3. Pack by outfit

ex: travel outfit includes; shoes, leggings, top, undergarments, accessories. 

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Garage Organizing Hacks

You don’t have to have custom cabinetry to get organized. 

1. Identify the items you can live without and schedule a donation pick up.

Contact Kimberly, a social worker in who gives back to the inner city of Tampa. ‭(813) 727-0264‬

2. Purchase uniform clear or white 18 gallon totes.

http://amzn.to/2DAb0AV

https://www.containerstore.com/s/18-gal.-white-tote-box/d?productId=10021311&q=Sterilite%20white

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3. Label each bin specifically. Use chalk labels and chalk pen or just use a sharpie and tape.

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Clean Home, Clear Heart, Clear Mind

My goal in this talk was to empower you with organizing tips backed by biblical truth to clean out your home, which will result in a clear heart and mind. If we can switch our perspective on belongings and what we need, our lives will be free of clutter.  

Notes:

Does anyone feel overwhelmed by what they see when they walk in their home?

Do you wish you had more time in a day? 

Do you go to bed regularly thinking and hoping tomorrow will be a better day?

 

1. God is the ultimate organizer

Genesis 1:3-5

ex: story of creation

Go make the most challenging task of creating the world, ORDERLY. In this story God exemplifies two key organizing principles; categorization (grouping) and specific labeling (naming). 

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2.  God’s view vs. the world’s view of our possessions

World’s View = Stuff brings Happiness

Driving force is Consumerism

-encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-increasing amounts & has created a culture of luxury, consumption & completion 

- this creates greed, which turns into too much in our home, which brings a lack of order, which breads chaos  

Gods View = Happiness & Value comes from Him

Matthew 6:25-31 

If you decide you are living a life for God, if follows that you do not fuss about what’s on the table at mealtime or whether the clothes in you closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put your stomach, more to your outer appearance than clothes you hang on your body.

- If we focus on him and trust him to provide, anything outside our immediate needs are an added bonus and reward. 2 Chronicles 1:12

- changing our view of possessions as a bonus takes away feelings of entitlement which allows us to live peacefully and satisfied with less. 

3. How to declutter your space and mind

So much organizing literature tells us to do this and do that and you will find order. Accomplishing a purging to do list is helpful for a season, but does not bring long term change. If we change our perspective of what we need and focus that God will provide we will build a healthy relationship with stuff. 

Remember . .

 Focus on living with only what you need.

If you feel inspired to give to those in need, here are charities that will come to you to pick up donations! Thank you so much for blessing others. 

Salvation Army  - provides services for substance abuse treatment 

1-800-728-7825

Vintage Thrift Store - benefits ybor dream center 

‭813-220-3497‬ 

Urban E - recycles your electronics 

813-512-6998

 

If you want the speaking notes or other resources  please email,  sarah@sorganizing.com. 

 

Go live Simply and in peace!  

Holiday Organizing Hacks Continued

When taking ornaments off the tree group them. This will make decorating your tree evenly much easier next year. 

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Fake Christmas trees grow, they’re always bigger when you put them away. A wratchet strap is a great way to shrink them back to their original size and get them back in the box.

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Save the original boxes to fragile ornaments, then place them in an 18 gallon tote with hard sides and label specifically. 

 

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Organized Ways to Put Away Holiday Decorations

Putting up  the holiday decor is fun! We look forward to it all year. Taking it down is not as fun, but when done correctly will save you so much time next year. 

1. Donate decorations you did not put up this year.

2. You don’t need anything fancy to be organized.

Use totes with hard sides and top.

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3. Reuse tissue paper from holiday gifts to wrap up the ornaments. If you run out use paper towel. If an ornament is extremely fragile keeps its original box to store it in, then place in the tote with other orgaments. 

4. Label everything by room 

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ex: family room tree, family room decor, kitchen decor, master bedroom decor, etc.  

5. Lights- wrap them around your fore arm like you would an extension cord and zip tie at the top. 

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I hope you find these tips helpful!  

Holiday Organizing

It is the holiday season and the To Do list tends to grow, family is in town and you may be throwing a few parties. I'm going to give you tip to help you feel a little less stressed this holiday.

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Grocery Lists

Generating a grocery list is a must. Many people end up going to the store multiple times and the store can be a zoo.  I recommend you make your list a week or two in advance so that you're prepared. You can change your mind on what things you're going to make and revise the list.

Step 1: download the Publix App (you will have to make a username and password)

Step 2: create your list, add to it and take away

Step 3: Go to the store, FUN PART . . . the app knows what store you're at and it populates the list in order by aisle so that your experience is efficient, no backtracking, no distractions. You can check off items as you go. 

The Holidays should be a fun time of year, not stressful. With the proper preparation you will find yourself way less stressed enjoying family time. 

Establishing Your Landing Zone

Do you have a landing zone?  

Not for your helicopter . . . for your keys, purse, briefcase, shoes, kid’s school bags, mail and school papers.

Your landing zone is adesignated space in the home off the main entrance (front door or garage door)  to drop all your items you come in and out of the home with everyday. 

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If you feel stressed rushing out the door in the morning, establishing this zone will give you peace of mind!

 

What you need:

1. Purchase wall hooks of your keys, purse and kid’s backpacks & lunch boxes. 

Wall hooks (large)

http://amzn.to/2vxIutQ

$20.99

2. Wall hanging files for the mail and school papers. (label each file)

Hanging wall files (IKEA)

http://amzn.to/2xSAbsk

$30.41

3. And shoes bench or shelves for shoes used daily. 

Shoes cubbies bench

http://amzn.to/2ym9hw2

$125.25

Setting up your Landing Zone will increase efficiency in the home and decrease stress while getting out the door! 

 

Beat the Bell; School is Back in Session

How to prepare for the school year and stay organized!

1. Create a Landing Zone - This is a space off the main entry way of the home and consists of wall hooks for backpacks & keys, shoe cubes or shelves & wall files for school papers. (Once or twice a week it will be the guardians responsibly to go through those papers, keep what's needed and discard the rest.)

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Pictured below is a custom mudroom with landing zone, you do not have to have this kind of space to implement a successful landing zone. 

Photo credit to Zillow

Photo credit to Zillow

Spring Cleaning the SOS Way

It's spring clean season and many individuals bring in the cleaning crew to do the deep clean; cleaning windows inside and out, dusting base board and crown molding, light futures, vacuuming out drawers, etc.

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Before you deep clean, what about a good discarding/purging session to clear out unused items. Purging doesn't mean throwing away, to SOS it means gifting the items to those less fortunate to bring another family joy. Please visit the website homepage to see the list of charities we support!