Clutter Free Living: For Your Ties & Belts

Eric's cousin asked me yesterday for some help getting his ties and belts organized.

I gave him the following simple solutions:

1) This is the simplest solution for ties and belts: a tie and belt hanger for your closet. These can be purchased anywhere hangers are sold - even at Walmart. 

2) If you have extra drawer space, these dividers are great and easy to access. Plus, you can effortlessly get your items put away after each use. Bed Bath & Beyond has many variations of these available - don't forget your coupon, if you go to BB&B.

3) If you're crafty, you can make this one yourself using a strip of wood and nails. Hang it on your closet wall or behind a door near where you get dressed.

4) Lastly, there's the recycled approach - my personal favorite! Use an old Coke box and fill it with your ties and belts. Place this on your closet shelf so it's easy to get to or on top of your dresser for a more organized, decorative touch.

Any one of these solutions take only minutes to apply, once you have your organizer in hand.

If you have any organizing questions of your own, please contact me at OrderlyManners@gmail.com or 904.351.NEAT(6328).

Happy Organizing!


Clutter Free Living: At Your Desk

Do you dread working in your office? Do you fear the idea of an office visitor?  If you answered yes to either of these questions, there are a few suggestions below to help your office be a productive and welcoming sanctuary. 

You CAN have a more enjoyable work environment:

1) Have a trash can, shredder and recycling bin ready. Then, toss everything that is broken and cannot be fixed (pens, tools, markers, etc.).

2) House all like items together in organizer trays or cups (staples, rubber bands, paper clips, stamps, pencils, pens, envelopes, extra paper).

3) Remove all personal items from your desk. Hang them on a wall, decorative shelf or display them on a cork board if they must stay.

4) Have your phone, computer, printer, fax machine, filing cabinet and trash can within comfortable reach of your chair.

5) Set up trays at your desk for:
- Incoming Mail
- Outgoing Mail
- To Do
- To File
- To Shred
* Sort the papers that were on your desk into the appropriate trays.

6) Gather all sticky notes. Put them on one large to do list OR arrange them neatly onto a dry erase board within eye level to your desk.

Extra Tips:

- Open mail right away & sort it into it's tray or trash bin. 

- If you have papers you need for regular reference post them to a cork board at eye level to your desk.

- Clear your desk at the end of each day. This offers a fresh start to the next day

- Have good task lighting, such as a desk lamp. 

- Fresh air and natural light give a sense of well being and comfort.

- Keep your essentials close at hand and be ruthless with the rest. Your space will immediately look bigger!

- If a spill happens, clean it completely up right away. 

- File each day, don't put it off. 

It's not inspiring to work in a space that is dominated by clutter and mess. It makes you feel out of control. You will not
want to work where clutter is distracting . A cleared desk makes you feel more in control and more confident as you work.

You can find more tips, just like these in the books listed below. In the mean time, stay tuned to the next post on Clutter Free Living.

Exerts and portions adapted from:  
- Lissanne Oliver's Sorted! The Ultimate Guide to Organizing Your Life - Once and for All 
- Jennifer Ford Berry's Organize Now
- Sandra Felton's Smart Organizing
- Freed & Shapiro's 4 Weeks to an Organized Life with AD/HD


Clutter Free Living: In Your Car

It's not easy to keep a car free of clutter and trash, especially with a family. 

Setting intentional habits is a must. Such as, getting trash out after each trip & unloading your vehicle daily. 

Everyone does better with helpful tools, too.

Here are a few inexpensive ideas to house not only your things, but your family's, as well:

I picked up one of these at a local car wash. This driver's organizer goes into a cup holder - it holds my phone, mileage log, pen, lip gloss and a pair of sunglasses. It was about $7. LOVE IT and use it everyday! 

Make a kid's caddie using a dollar store tote. I love that this is portable and can be taken out for waiting periods where little ones need extra entertaining - this doesn't have to be exclusive for the car. 

An over the door shoe organizer, found also at a dollar store, can be used to keep each family member neat, tidy and ready to go. (Make sure you get the shortest version, so it's not dragging on the floorboard.)

For you overachievers, check this out: First aid, cleaning & skincare items are all available when on the go. 

These items - coupled with discipline - will help keep a neater, more enjoyable ride for anyone. 

Happy Trails! 


"15 Clutter Busting Routines for Any Family"

My cousin sent this info to me recently from Becoming Minimalist by Joshua Becker. She said that she has already applied so much of this blog to her own household - starting with her kitchen counter tops. I looked over the post she recommended and he seriously brought to words the rules I live by for daily living in our home. I was able to show my husband that I indeed was not crazy in my approach and that other families live like this too - he smiled and laughed.

I hope you enjoy Becoming Minimalist as much as we all have.

Here's his post that we've been applying:





Can I tell you how much I have LOVED working with Shoeboxed.com? They are an amazing business that reduces important paper clutter, like receipts and business cards. I was spending at least an hour every week recording my expenses into a spreadsheet, before Shoeboxed.com found me. I have been using their services since last Fall and haven't been happier.

Now, when I have a business expense and get a paper receipt, I put it into a prepaid envelope and mail it to Shoeboxed.com. I mail my envelope at the end of each month. Then, within a few weeks, my envelope is returned to me, just in case I need it for tax purposes, an in-store return or warranty. They also have an iPhone App that I use. All I do is take a picture of the receipt and it automatically gets uploaded into my Shoeboxed.com account. Which by the way, is in a handy spreadsheet ready to import into Quickbooks, Quicken or whatever finance software you use. I love that this year my taxes are going to be so easy to file with my accountant. I'll just download my expenditures, print them out and leave the rest to the accountant.

Another really neat thing about Shoeboxed.com is that I get my own email through them. This isn't an email that I personally use, but its one that I give to stores or companies that I shop with. This way I don't have a hundred emails everyday from companies with their special offers. So, this keeps my email accounts nice and tidy. Also, I send my online purchase (like Amazon, eBay, etc)  receipts to my Shoeboxed.com email and they upload that to my expense report!

I can't brag enough about this company. They have made managing my receipts and taxes so much easier!

If you have any questions about Shoeboxed.com and how they can help you personally or professionally, let me know and I'll give you all the info. You can try out their program free to see how you like it, too. I'm so glad I did! I have a couple of their links on my blog. You can click and follow it right to their page, to start your trial program.


Studio Utility Closet

Here are a few before and afters from last year at a Business' Studio in Birmingham. The pictures are of a utility closet where cleaning supplies, maintenance items, and dog things are kept. I visited the business while in Birmingham a few weeks ago, and it still looks like the finished product!


Bill & Julie's Testimonial

"A year and a half ago, we moved into our house during a crazy time. Julie was pregnant and finishing up a graduate degree, and Bill was working full time. Because of the circumstances, we were not able to effectively organize our belongings. Since we moved in, we worked on organizing bit by bit. In one day, Stephanie helped us organize our master closet, developed a system for us to manage our mail clutter, and gave us great ideas for our office/ play room. She asked us questions to learn about our habits, and tailored her advice to give us a system we could maintain even with the demands of a 15 month old son.  

Thanks to Stephanie, we are finally able to truly enjoy our new home! She was a joy to work with on this project, and we plan on having her back to finish other projects. She was courteous, professional, and enthusiastic. We highly recommend Orderly Manners for anyone who wants to bring peace and organization to their lives!"

Julie and Bill Sorenson- Jacksonville, FL