Archive for category: Organizing for Kids and Family

Time Saving Tools for Anyone

Tip #1:

Be a Password Junkie

How many times have you clicked on the link, “forgot your password,” had to wait an absurd amount of time for the email, then followed all the prompts to change it? Now, how many times have you forgotten what the heck you just changed the password to? I am pretty sure that we have all done it. While having my computer tuned up, I learned about a handy application calledLastPass. This is a clever App that allows you to store all your passwords so you can securely login to your frequently visited websites and only have to remember the one master password! Never have the frustration of a forgotten password slow you down again.

Tip #2:

Take a Mental Sick Day

To make time, you need to spend some time…to regroup and reset. Here is why that makes sense. Lots of people have found that there is more benefit to taking some regular time off than to try and keep up on everything in life and put in your full forty every week. When you take a half day once a month to sit and plan your days ahead, you are no longer distracted with small things that must be done. It also gives you time to schedule the following month. Things may change but at least you will have a clearer idea of things that need to be accomplished and what needs to be prioritized. As a result of consistently taking this, much needed, time to plan ahead, you will feel less overwhelmed by your chaotic work and home life. To manage time more efficiently, consider taking a mental sick day.

Tip #3:

Don’t Dwell on Mistakes

We’ve all made them and we learn from them, but from time to time we have epic disasters. Whether it’s a missed flight, paid a bill late, or forgetting something important, it happens. Focusing on the catastrophe takes up valuable time. Use your time in a positive way to recover from your mistakes of misjudgment, questioning your gut, and use this time to reflect and ACT appropriately and you will turn this fiasco into an opportunity for growth. You are definitely going to spend time thinking about it, so turn those thoughts to how it happened and how you would do things differently next time. Forgive yourself for being human and discover why it happened and next time, you’re guaranteed to plan efficiently to avoid a similar debacle.

Tips #4

Identify your Time Robbers

We all have time robbers, but how do we identify them and, more importantly, how do we tackle them like a three hundred pound linebacker? Emails are an extremely common time robber. Many will spend 25 min composing the perfect email that captures the correct tone of voice when they could have used that voice to convey the message in about 1 minute. Another time robber is online distractions. Twenty percent of us spend more time at our desks on social media sites than we do working at that desk. Social media is a great way to stay connected, however, it is necessary to schedule time for Social Media so that you are not loosing time. Schedule 20 mins a day or half your lunch break. Whatever your schedule, stick to it. Some people can easily spend two hours a day on social media. Following the schedule for five days could save you over eight hours a week!

Tip #5

List Making

An oldy but a goody, making lists keeps all your commitments in one place. Finding the right tool to track everything you need to do for work, and for your personal life, is a task. The first step to finding the tool is identifying how you’d like to make and maintain these list. Are you a paper person? Or would you prefer an App that Sync’s to your phone so you can update on the go? If you are a paper person, consider getting a small notebook and separate out with post it, file sticky tabs, personal, and work. Start making bullets with each task and check them off weekly. If the task didn’t get completed re-write and move to the next week. There is something about having to re-write the list of things that didn’t get accomplished, that makes you want to finish is for the next week. If you prefer an APP, check these out:


Priority Matrix - This app allows you to prioritize and manage your tasks making it easier to delegate to others. It is an efficient app for making and saving your lists.

Download app for: Apple • Android


Wunderlist - To do list and task manager which allows you to set reminders and a due date on all of your pressing tasks.

Download app for: Apple • Android


Any.do - To do list and daily planner. This one got great reviews and looks very simple to use. Get things done with this app seamlessly since it’s a very organized format. My number one pick out of the three!

Download app for: Apple • Android


No matter who you are, there is time you can be saving. With these tips, you will be well on your way to efficiently managing your time. If you feel you are in a rut with your time management tools, or wish to have some assistance in implementing these tips, I hope you will think of us. Sorted Out has been a leading name in organization for almost 13 years. A trusted name in the industry, our talented and highly trained professional organizers are ready to help you administer a plan to help you conquer your time management challenges. Call us for a complimentary phone consultation today!

Get Organized in 2016

Get Organized in 2016Have you ever said, “This is the year, I am going to get organized.“  OR, “I’m ready this year to cut the paper clutter.” OR, “This is the year I am going to park the car in the garage!” If you have said these few things to yourself, well you are in luck….We are here to help you get organized RIGHT NOW! Make 2016 the year you have been wanting to check off the list of organizing projects.

As busy as we all are, let’s face it, being organized is all about saving TIME, which most of us don’t have enough of! Being organized is also about saving MONEY. How many times have you ran out to the store to buy something, then to find that same exact item about a day later? Sound familiar? If you are like most of us, we have a ton of paper. Did you know that 80% of the paper we consume we never actually reference again?  At Sorted Out, we believe in developing processes and systems for getting and staying organized. You too could have a more organized office!

Here are some quick fixes for 2016 Paper Clutter:

  1. Create Action Files. A tabletop file for daily, short-term filing.  An easy to use accordion file to organize bills for payment, papers that require response, and information that must be filed.
  2. Create a Basic File Hub. Every home needs a good working file system. Kept in a file cart, cabinet or drawer, basic files hold medical insurance records, credit card statements, rent receipts and bank statements. Be sure to purge basic files on a monthly or quarterly basis to keep up with the maintenance.
  3. Create a Forever File. Archives for long-term file storage. Copies of tax returns and insurance policies, homeowners’ records, medical records, and copies of legal documents belong in classic files. Use file cabinets or records boxes to protect these items for long-term storage. Original documents such as insurance policies, legal documents, or tax records should be stored in secure facilities such as safe deposit boxes.
  4. Plan of Action. Setting a timeline for maintaining and developing a new filing system. After you set up your new system, set time aside to keep up with the daily, weekly, or monthly maintenance of it. Especially with tax time approaching, you’ll be happy you saved all those important documents.

file-clutter

If you struggle with any of the Paper Clutter in your home, give us a call and we will give you 1 Free hour on any package purchased for NEW Clients only. This doesn’t have to be the year that you keep piling paper all over your desk or kitchen island. Get Organized today with Sorted Out. Hurry this offer expires January 31st, 2016!

Happy Organizing!

4 Easy Ways to Control Christmas Clutter and Organize your Holiday Season

With the stress of the holiday season in full swing, it’s easy to allow clutter to get out of hand and wreak havoc on all your holiday plans. However, with just a few easy steps, you can do a few things that will help you organize all your holiday activities so that you can spend more time enjoying the season rather than dreading it.

 

1. Create a gift wrap station

wrap station

Take inventory of your supplies. See what you already have–and what you need. Will you need to refresh stocks of gift wrap, gift bags, ribbons or bows? Make sure you have scissors and pens. Like cellophane tape, these gift wrapping necessities often go astray during wrapping season, so lay in a good supply before you begin. Include mailing supplies on your list, especially postal–approved parcel sealing tape. Masking tape, twine and cellophane tape can become caught in parcel handling machinery, delaying your gifts and goodies or even damaging them. Don’t run the risk to save a few pennies. Make a “to buy” list and add items to the shopping list. Buy extra tape. There are never enough rolls of tape on hand for holiday projects!

Next select your wrap station location. Good lighting and a comfortable work surface are a must, so consider placing a craft table near a window. Those in small homes can make use of a bed area, if they place a large sheet of poster board or cardboard on the bed before hauling out the supplies. Access to a computer and printer will help speed the process of mailing gifts. Look for a postal scale to make best use of the mailing tools offered by the United States Postal Service. Using their Click–N–Ship, you’ll be able to buy postage, print mailing labels and arrange for carrier pickup from the comfort of home. Don’t waste time in line!

 

2.  Home preparation 

home prep

When your house is in order, it’s much easier to relax. And, your guests will appreciate a clutter free and inviting home, as well. Invite Sorted Out over for a consultation to review your home and help define priorities for getting your house “guest ready”. Time is valuable during the Holiday Season, and if you find your time is short, then put us to work making your home organized for the holidays.

 

3. Create a master gift list 

gift list

Create folder with this master gift list and start taking notes about what you want to purchase for others keep track of their name, gift description, where you are going to purchase the gift, if you have to mail it, the budgeted about and if it’s been wrapped! This helps you stay on track with your budget and you don’t leave anyone out.

 

4. Use mobile apps

use apps

Use these fun apps this holiday season for shopping, organizing list, and menu planning. All of these are available in Apple’s App Store.

-Gift List Manager $1.99
-The Christmas List $1.99
-Santa’s Bag FREE
-Menu Planner $2.99
-Meal Board $3.99
-Meal Builder Pro $2.99

 

Let us know what you think – what are some of your go-to tips for staying organized during the holidays? Let us know on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/SortedOutOrganizing.

Halloween Safety Tips:

October is here and so the time for costumes, decorations, candy, and spooky fun begins! This month’s post will cover helpful Halloween safety tips approved by the National Safety Council. To ensure Halloween is safe for our kids, please share this post and tell your friends – by all of us doing our part we can ensure a fun and safe night for everyone.

For those of us driving, please be especially alert and cautious because of the high number of pedestrians walking the streets.

haLLO

Safety Tips for Motorists:

  • Watch for children darting out from between parked cars.
  • Watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs.
  • Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully.
  • At twilight and later in the evening, watch for children in dark clothing.
  • Never use your cell phone while driving.
  • Discourage teens from driving on Halloween. There are too many hazards and distractions for inexperienced drivers.

 

For all those young ghouls and goblins planning on trick-or-treating make sure to bring a guardian. All children under the age of 12 should always be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult.

Six children in costumes trick or treating at woman's house

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trick-or-Treating Tips:

  • Instruct your children to travel only in familiar, well-lit areas and avoid trick-or-treating alone.
  • Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home.
  • Teach your children to never enter a stranger’s home.
  • Agree on a specific time for your children to come home.
  • Give your children flashlights with fresh batteries to help them see and for others to see them.
  • Make sure your child or a responsible adult with them carries a cell phone for quick communication.
  • Review all appropriate pedestrian and traffic safety rules with your children:
    • Look both ways before crossing the street and use established crosswalks whenever possible.
    • Walk, do not run, from house to house.
    • Do not cross yards and lawns where unseen objects or the uneven terrain can present tripping hazards and never walk near lit candles or luminaries.
    • Walk on sidewalks, not in the street. If there are no sidewalks, walk on the far edge of the road facing traffic.

Children will be anxious to stuff themselves with their treats, but parents need to take these necessary precautions first:

  • Insist that treats be brought home for inspection before anything is eaten, then examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before your children eat them.
  • Give children an early meal before going out to prevent them from filling up on Halloween treats or eating anything before you can inspect it.
  • Only let your children eat factory-wrapped treats. Avoid homemade treats unless you know the cook well.
  • When in doubt, throw it out.

 

Reviewing this with your children can help establish a safe and smooth game plan you all can stick to.

A few other tips to consider involves costume safety. When making or purchasing Halloween costumes, follow these safety precautions to ensure your children remain safe while looking great:

best-cities-trick-or-treating-ftr

Costumes

  • All costumes, wigs and accessories should be fire-resistant.
  • If children are allowed out after dark, fasten reflective tape to their costumes and bags to make sure they are visible.
  • When buying Halloween makeup, make sure it is nontoxic and always test it in a small area first. Remove all makeup before children go to bed to prevent skin and eye irritation.
  • Masks can limit or block eyesight, so consider non-toxic makeup or decorative hats as safer alternatives.
  • If masks are worn, they should have large eye holes and nose and mouth openings. Encourage your children to remove their masks before crossing the street.
  • Children should only wear well-fitting costumes and shoes to avoid trips and falls.
  • Do not allow your children to wear decorative contact lenses, as they present a risk for serious eye injury.
  • Knives, swords and other accessories should be made from cardboard or flexible materials. Do not allow children to carry sharp objects.

With these tips, everyone can have a safe and fun Halloween. Remember, time spent together is the most important, and what your kids will remember most. Happy Halloween all!

Back to School Organizing Tips

Back to School Time: Make it as Organized as Possible!

AssignmentLunch

 It’s nearing that time; soon the kids will be back at school, and the routine you learned for the past 3 months will be overturned for drop-off times, homework, projects, and more. Take advantage of these helpful tips to eliminate the clutter and mental chaos that this time of the year can create.

Read more →

7 Tips When Merging Your Households

1. Take INVENTORY excel spreadsheet to map out what you have and where it’s going to go.

2. Agree on a date and time the two of you will get together to “sort out” your belongings. A purge before you merge your households is a MUST. This will save a lot of time and aggravation when getting into the home together. Read more →