Monday, January 31, 2011

Home Management Binder

Once again, I have been busy organizing in 2011. Today I started my new Home Management Binder. This binder will keep everything together in one handy, portable place!

Here's what I did:

I had on a few tabbed folders so I grabbed 7 of them for each section.

I chose what each section needed to be and made up some sheets for each one.

Then I put it all together in my binder.

I also stuck in a pencil pocket for extra storage. It holds pencils, pens, white out, stamps, and return address labels.

I have 7 sections: 1- Cleaning schedule, 2- Daily routine, 3- Monthly menu, 4- Finances, 5- To-Do list, 6- Calendar, and 7- Ideas.

Here are some close-ups of the sheets I made. I have not filled them out yet...I will work on that throughout the week.

It is still a work-in-progress but I feel pretty good so far.
To be continued...

Sunday, January 30, 2011

A New Challenge

I have taken the weekend off (bad eye infection) and am ready to kick it into gear with A Bowl Full Of Lemon's new "Weekly Challenge"!

To get us all ready to go, grab a binder to organize your home. Get more details here.

See ya'll tomorrow... I have to go get my binder ready!!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Keeping Busy on a Snowy Day

We had another snow day from school yesterday. After laying around for most of the morning, I decided that I better do something productive. Over the past few days, as I was picking up the house, I noticed that my base boards are looking a little worn! And "little" would be an understatement!

What did I tell ya...they are lookin' pretty shabby! And I swear, I just touched them up over the summer. It's only been 6 months (and new carpeting that doesn't match up to the paint line of the old carpeting!).

So, I grabbed a paintbrush and got to work.

The pictures aren't the best...too many shadows...but doesn't it look WAY better?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

To Paint...or Not To Paint

With all of the organizing that I have done lately, I really feel like I am on a roll. And as I look around my place, my To-Do List is starting to grow! One thing that I have been pondering lately is whether or not to paint all or some of my doors black. That's right...BLACK!

Check out this "Painting Doors Black" post over at *Remodelaholic*.

Here is one of the doors I want to paint black (front door).

It is a bit of a risk but it is only paint, right?

So, what do you guys think...paint or not paint?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Day #20 of Challenge--Organized Pictures

I love pictures but am not a scrap-booker. I don't have enough time or money to even get started with all of that. So, I have 3 ways that I store my pictures: albums, photo boxes and CD's.

As you know, I keep bills, important papers, and my budget in the polka dot and green boxes. But I have 2 more boxes. The brown and tan boxes hold pictures.

In the tan box, I have all my loose pictures lined up in chronological order.

The flat, brown box holds school pictures, class pictures, program pictures, etc, and any other large photos. There is also a big stack of CD's full of pictures.

I also use photo albums. I try my best to have 1 album per year and stick in a few shoots throughout each month. This album is from my daughter's Pre-K school year and the pictures were from December...she is celebrating her birthday and Christmas party at school and she visits Santa. These albums are stored throughout the house...depending on what the album looks like. These have to coordinate, you know!

Boy, only 1 more day of the 21-Day Challenge! We DID It!!!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Master Closet Cleanout

I shared my bedroom set up here and here. One closet has floor to ceiling shelves (aka--my dresser) and the other closet is for my hang-ups, purses, wrapping paper and vacuums. Yes, that is a lot to squeeze into one closet but my storage in my small condo is limited so I have to use every square inch!

Here is the before shot. The clothes do seem to be pretty packed in but, since I do not have to share my closet (there are a few perks for being single) I have both my warm and cold season clothes in there. I do try to keep summer clothes and winter clothes separate but I have a system for wearing ALL the clothes.

To keep me from wearing the same things over and over again, I wear something and then hang it all the way to the left of the closet (notice the long sleeves and sweaters that I have worn lately). Then I can not choose anything from that side until I wear the rest of the closet (that is--whatever season it happens to be).

Anyway...The bottom of the closet has my carpet shampooer, an open spot for my vacuum, wrapping paper tub, and a small tub that holds all of my design dreams (mags, tear-outs, doodle ideas, etc).

The top of the closet has all of my purses and bags. This is the area that needs some work! I emptied the top shelf and lined everything up a little nicer. I did go through everything to see what I could purge but you know what...I use everything up there!!

(Notice the half-painted lower part of the closet (part tan---part dirty, scuffed builder's white...Has been added to the To-Do List for this room)

Look at all those fun bags...I just love bags...the bigger, the better!! I would get rid of all my clothes to have a closet full of bags!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Organizing All That Paper

I try my best to go through the mail as soon as I get it and toss the junk and file the bills, etc.
I have a Picture Box that I use to store the bills that need to be paid.

The polka dot box holds my monthly budget break down, bills and calculator.

Just in case you're curious...the bottom box holds Thank You and Birthday cards.

After my bills are paid, I file the statements (and keep them for one year...then shred) in a 2-drawer file cabinet.

Not to change the subject too much, but...I mentioned in my New Year's Resolutions that I wanted to pay off debt. I have always loved Dave Ramsey and have done several of his suggestions with my money. But to help pay off more debt, I have decided to really buckle down and follow his "Envelope System". He suggests to pay most everything with cash. You set a monthly budget and put that amount of cash in envelopes. My 'envelopes' are for gifts (birthdays, etc), clothes, savings (for miscellaneous things such as car tags or a vacation), hair maintenance (come on girls, you know how important that is!), Christmas and home improvements. I won't go in to too much personal detail but so far this year, I have stuck to my monthly budget and even saved more than I planned for...paying with cash really does help my spend LESS MONEY!!! Dave says that you feel the 'sting' of the purchase way more if it is bought with cash.

Here's to hoping that those envelopes grow up to be big, fat envelopes!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Day #16--Clean Out Fridge!

Today's challenge was to clean out and organize the refrigerator. I saw this challenge in the morning and then went to work...dreading the task!! We have now gotten home from school, had dinner, started homework and I opened the door...

See, I told you...I was dreading this!! Yes, the lighting is bad and makes it look darker than it really is, but it still looked like a black-hole to me! But I had to keep going...Day #16 already, with only 5 days left. I couldn't give up now!

I did not take everything out at one time...I worked on one shelf at a time (in between running back and forth to help with homework). So, here is the first shelf.

I cleared each shelf, wiped it down good and organized.

'The After'. As you can tell, we need to go to the store but we always use up all the food before we buy more. So it can get pretty empty but it a great way to save money...NO WASTE!

There is just enough left to have sandwiches, grapes and drinks as part of our lunches. Yea...I teach school and my daughter goes to school and we pack our lunch every day. Nothing against the 'school lunches' but I like to have more control of what we eat.

Speaking of using ALL the food before we buy more...

My daughter always gets tired of the same cereal everyday so we made a schedule of breakfast possibilities.

She can eat any of these choices, any day, but so far she has stuck to the schedule (love that girl) and look at what happened to all that cereal that she gets tired of...

It is now on the grocery list.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Organizing the Medicine & To-Do List: part 2

Today's Bowl Full of Lemons Challenge was to organize our medicine. I have kept my medicine in a kitchen cabinet since my daughter was born and it has been there ever since. With it being in the kitchen, medicine is not the only thing in this cabinet.

Like I has a little of this and a little of that! So, I emptied it and started looking over all the expiration dates.

I was happy to see that the the only expired medicine was the cough drops! However, the Crystal Light Pink Lemonade expired in 2008!!

I wiped it down good and got to reorganizing. It still amazes me every day how much extra room I have in my house due to all of this organizing! Go figure!!

Now, for Part 2 from the To-Do List of 2011: some kind of mantle over the fireplace.

I will probably have to move my sparkly mirror (maybe to about the couch on the opposite wall) to make room but I have been longing to have a display area!!

Any ideas???