kids helping organize room

How to Develop Your Child’s Organizational Skills

As you go around the house organizing, consider getting your kids involved in the process too. Encouraging their organizational skills around the house can help them with schoolwork in the near future, make things easier around the household, and instill good habits they take into adulthood. These tips for toddlers are ones that you can adapt to slightly older kids too.

Cleaning Up

If they spill their juice, show them how to wipe up the counter or floor. When it comes to small spills like this, your toddler will likely enjoy helping you clean it up.

When they get to the point where they can try pouring the juice themselves, there will be at least a few small spills. That’s to be expected! Show them how to clean the counter or floor with a washcloth, letting them slowly watch you do so before trying it independently.

Putting Things Where They Belong

After your toddler finishes playing with their toys, do they put them away? If you do it for them, start to include them in the process to help them begin organizing.

Create a basket each for different toys, such as one for wooden blocks and another one for crayons. When each bin holds only one type, it’s easier for your little one to distinguish where it goes.

Keep the bins at a low level that your child can reach. If they forget to put toys back at the end of the day, gently remind them. Help them do so and show them how much better the room looks once it’s clean to motivate them to do so again tomorrow.

kids organizing skills

Turning Off Lights

Energy use is not something you might think your toddler needs to know about yet but turning off lights when not in use is a good habit to begin at a young age. When they realize that being energy efficient is good for the future of the planet, they will want to do their part too.

Consider letting them turn on and off the light switch in a particular room, such as their bedroom or bathroom. Make it fun and easy for them to remember to do so by creating a fun song for them to sing as they turn off the light when entering the room and turn it off when leaving.

Getting Them Involved without Nagging

If you’re unsure how to make organizing fun for the youngster, here are a few pointers. It starts with using a positive tone of voice.

Even if you get frustrated, try to keep that encouraging, uplifting way of speaking. If needed, leave the room for a minute, or take a long sip of coffee before trying again to get your toddler involved in small organizing tasks.

Rather than nagging, be clear as to what you want them to do. For example, “please put your stuffed animals into the bin” (rather than “pick up after yourself”).

Do you want more tips on organizing around the home? Are you tired of trying to clear away the clutter all by yourself? Our professional organizers are here to help. Reach out today to talk about how we can help you achieve what you need at home.

organizing tips for new moms

Organizing Tips for New Moms

A baby brings so much joy to a home, but it also can bring stress if your living environment isn’t organized. To help make your days easier, try one or more of these tips from our professional organizers.

Use a Calendar

A calendar that everyone in the household has easy access to is essential. It will keep everyone in the loop about daily activities and also their responsibilities.

This calendar covers everything from taking out the trash to who makes dinner tonight. Whether it is a paper calendar that hangs in the kitchen or an electronic one that everyone shares are up to you and your family.

Bins for Toys

The number of toys your little one accumulates will likely grow rapidly. To keep them organized, use clear bins so that you can see instantly what is inside, saving both time and effort when in search of a particular one.

Sort them into categories, such as dinosaurs and dress-up costumes, and then add labels. Before going to bed each night, put them back into the correct bins. As your child gets older, they will take over this nightly responsibility.

organizing tips for moms

Let Go of Stuff

As your baby grows, they will outgrow clothes and toys, as well as needing different essentials. While letting go of adorable onesies is difficult, it is essential to avoid stressful clutter in the home.

Stay on top of things by putting things they have outgrown into containers to donate to charity or give to a family or friend who is expecting a child. Stay on top of it by labeling the items according to age. While it’s difficult to let go of things, many of them will no longer be needed and can help others rather than just sitting in a closet taking up space.

Multiple Baby Change Stations

Having to go to one room in the house every time the baby needs changing is exhausting. Instead, set up two change stations, each one with diapers, wipes, and other must-haves.

Not only will this save you energy but also time. Keep the essentials in a cute basket, so it doesn’t look messy.

Space Out Laundry Loads

For any new mom, laundry is a dreaded chore. It never seems to end, and your day is busy enough already.

To avoid feeling overwhelmed by piles of baby clothes, try to do one load a day. That is more manageable, and you’ll get that great feeling of having it folded and put away by bedtime.

Also, time the load so that it doesn’t slow down your day. For example, put the washing machine on before having breakfast and put on the dryer before leaving the house.

Create Baby’s Nursery Closet

Regular closets are not meant to organize baby’s clothing and other must-haves. To maximize the space, add rods, shelves, and even a dresser in the closet if you have the room.

Our professional organizers are here to help you create an organized closet, even if it’s a small space. We can also provide other valuable time-saving tips to make your day smoother. Our team includes moms who will show you what worked for them and personalize the home to your family’s needs. Reach out to us today for a free consultation!

organizing for new baby

How to Organize Your Home for a New Baby

Congratulations on the upcoming birth of your baby! If you’re wondering how to prep the home for the little one’s arrival, the tips below are for you. By putting in the effort now, you can settle in easier with a newborn at home.

Create Stations Around the House

This is an exciting time but also a chaotic one! The last thing you want to have to do is go to the other end of the house to get diapers or a bottle when your cutie is crying in your arms.

To make your life easier, set up stations around the house for feeding and changing. For example, consider keeping diapers in more places than just the nursery. You might also have stacks in the bedroom and living room, for example. Add wipes and other essentials at each station.

To keep these areas tidy, put the must-haves into bins or baskets. Not only will these storage containers help you keep stuff together, but they will also look attractive.

Get the Needed Supplies – and Plenty of Them

Heading to the store for things you need will be more challenging once the baby arrives than it was before. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be a lot of necessities for the new baby and you, so make sure you stock up on those things now.

Buying a big box of diapers, for example, makes more sense than a smaller one. Also, try to store extras in bins to keep them organized and easy to find when you require them down the road.

organizing home for new baby

Declutter to Make Space for the Baby

Now that you have the items to meet the newborn’s needs, you’ll have to find the space to store them. Even in a small place or if you don’t have a designated nursery, we can still help you do so by getting creative with storage solutions.

An upcoming baby also has a way of shifting parents’ priorities, so you might find that certain things that seemed critical before are now easier to part with. Finding more space is possible by adding shelves to walls, closet organizers, and more.

In addition to clearing drawers and closet space for the baby’s things, also create room in the kitchen. Larger drawers in the kitchen area are great for storing breastfeeding supplies or formula and then more solid foods for them in the future. Choose low drawers so that your little one can reach their snacks when they get old enough to walk.

Sort Their Clothes by Size

It’s probably a fair assumption to say that you have quite a few baby clothes by now. To save time and energy weeding through piles to find something for the newborn to wear each day, organize them based on size before the baby gets here.

The smallest ones will go in the dresser for easy access, while the larger ones can go into totes for use later. Be sure to label each bag so that you know the size as babies grow quickly!

As the due date approaches, reach out to us for additional organizational tips to suit your unique home and preferences. We can also help you maintain storage systems after the baby’s arrival. We are wishing your family much happiness!

Star Metro Land Media – Tips to Declutter your Workspace

February 2019 – For many a post-secondary student, the start of the new year will bring with it a renewed sense of scholastic productivity. Yet if it’s a messy workspace that’s holding them back from academic success, a thorough de-cluttering might be the resolution to prioritize.
Read more…

Resolve to Get Organized This Year

resolve to get organized

With the new year fast approaching a lot of you will be making resolutions to make 2019 better than 2018 was. If you are one of those that makes New Years resolutions, then I know a lot of you will be resolving to get organized this year. In order to avoid being in the same cluttered mess at the end of January, here are some tips on how to help you stick with your clutter free resolution.

Know why you want to be organized

Jot down the main reasons for wanting to get organized. resolve to get organizedDo you want to have more time to spend with your family or friends? Do you want to reduce your frustration and anxiety levels when you can’t find things? Will being more organized improve your relationships? Will you save money on past due and interest charges and improve your credit rating? Whatever the reason, write them down and keep the list in a conspicuous place until the task is completed. It will be a constant reminder to you.

Tackle one room at a time

Rather than running around the house picking up clutter, pick the one room that causes you the most grief. Start on that room. Be realistic about how much you can give to the task at one time. With every drawer you organize, with every pile you make disappear or with any space you open up give yourself a pat on the back and realize the step you have taken towards an organized and clutter free pace.

Give, store or sell?

There are so many ways to rid yourself of the items you are not going to keep. Family members may want some of the items as a keepsake. Any items that are in good working order or aren’t worn could be sold in a consignment shop or on line. Many charities would love to receive your gently used items to restock their shelves after the holidays.

Get any help you need

A lot of the clients that ClutterBGone has worked with in the past could not have done it alone and there is nothing wrong with asking for help. Enlist the help of friends or family if you feel you just can’t get it done yourself. You can also hire a professional organizing service like ClutterBGone. We can get you organized in no time with our highly skilled team just like we have with hundreds of satisfied clients in the GTA.

So, if you have resolved to get organized in 2019, good for you! Keep these tips in mind. And if you need professional help to get organized just contact us here to get the ball rolling. We love what we do!

Getting And Staying Organized For The Holidays

Image result for christmas images
Well, Thanksgiving has come and gone and maybe you’re already getting tired of the holiday ads on TV. It’s hard to believe that the holidays are just around the corner. We all know that the holidays around Christmas are the most stressful of the year. Here are a few ideas to help stay calm and organized during this hectic time.

Holiday Shopping

stay organized during the holidaysThe shopping centers will confirm that a lot of you put off the holiday shopping until the last minute. Set some time aside to get it done earlier.  Calendarize it if you need to and treat it like an appointment – no changes.  Arrange a babysitter if need be or if you’re able to book an afternoon off work, even better.  The shopping malls get crazy with each passing day, as you know.  Last minute shopping is the perfect recipe for stress over the holidays and for purchasing items that tend to lead to clutter.

Gift Wrapping

Gather all of your wrapping supplies and keep them in one place.  Make a list of what you are short of and get out to buy what you need before the selection is minimal in the stores.  A basket or even a box will do to hold the tape, ribbons, bows, etc. that you will need.  I use an old cookie tin for bows to keep them from being flattened.  Gently tie all of your rolls of wrapping paper together.  Prepare a ‘wrapping station’ somewhere in the house and bring all of the gifts to this area for wrapping.  Everyone will know where the station is and you will not have to hunt down the supplies when other people wrap gifts.

Meal time

Christmas to me is all about the meal with family and friends. Sure, the gifts can be nice but there is nothing like the laughs and conversations you have around the dinner table. Make a list now of everything that you will need for dinner.  If you order a fresh bird for dinner, get it ordered soon to ensure the type and size is available. If wine is on your list, you can expect crowds at the stores so get out there early while your favourite is still in stock and avoid the long line-ups.  Don’t forget the extras like the cranberry sauce and rolls.  The Christmas meal is one of my favorites of the year.

Do you have room for the new arrivals?

Now is the time to go through the toys or clothes of your kids and purge what is no longer usable or just doesn’t fit any longer.  You know family is going to spoil the kids with a lot of gifts so make room now and reduce the stress of trying to make everything fit into the same space later.  Have the kids get involved.  It will build their excitement leading up to the big day. Don’t forget about your own closet too.

Gift Giving

I’m sure you have already given plenty of thought to what you are going to purchase for your loved ones.  Many of us anguish and plead for hints or ideas trying to give that special gift.  Many items over the holidays are returned or even worse, not used at all and end up adding the to clutter that people already have.  When in doubt gift cards are always appreciated and with the newer consumer laws most will not have an expiry date.

The holidays are traditionally a very stressful time for most of us but with a little bit of planning we can reduce the stress and stay organized during this time.  If you need assistance in getting ready for Christmas there is still time.  Contact us here to see how we can help.

 

Is Clutter Affecting Your Relationships?

clutter and relationships

In many of the project’s ClutterBGone has worked on, we’ve seen the impact that clutter has on relationships.  Clutter can have a negative impact on family and friends and can be a factor in a deteriorating relationship. Here are a few ways that clutter can affect a relationship.

Clutter makes you feel tired and depressed

Clutter is overwhelming. Most people living with clutter just can’t find the energy to get started let alone declutter an entire area. Clearing the clutter and living in an organized space gives you a feeling of accomplishment and gives you the energy to do what is important to you. Clutter is also depressing. Feelings of hopelessness can increase with clutter. Relief can come, at some extent, from getting organized and reducing the clutter in your lives. A new, organized space gives a feeling of starting anew with a renewed sense of energy that your family and friends will see right away.

Procrastination

Most disorganized people are procrastinators. Everything is left to the last minute or even later. They find it difficult to put things away immediately and leave it until the clutter has grown into a pile that seems impossible to get to the bottom of. Bills get paid late or not even at all. Interest charges mount, your credit rating is negatively affected and we know that finances are the biggest cause of arguments in a marriage. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to turn this around with a system that we create just for you.

Harmony at home

Clutter is also a cause of arguments at home. clutter and relationshipsThe home may always look like a bomb has gone off. Even though your home may be clean, clutter can make it look messy and dirty. If one partner is a neat freak and the other let’s clutter dominate then we have a recipe for arguments. Let’s clear out the clutter, get organized and reduce the things that put a strain on relationships. Lord knows there is enough of those already!

Clutter is isolating

Many people who live with clutter admit that they don’t want to have people over. They are embarrassed with the condition of their home. Social contacts get reduced and you start to miss out on important social activities. Relationships are important to our mental well being. Don’t let clutter rule your social life.

Don’t let clutter negatively affect your family and friends. Let ClutterBGone show you how to declutter your life and improve your relationships. Just contact us here to get things started.

How Do My Friends Stay So Organized?

Do you have a friend that seems to be always organized and clutter free? Do you pop in sometimes unexpectedly and their home always looks so neat and tidy? There’s no secret to how they do it but continue reading and I’ll share how you can do it too.

One in, one out

This could be the mantra of ClutterBGone, especially with clothing.Related image Unless you are replacing your entire wardrobe, you need to get rid of one piece of clothing for every new one you bring into your home. This doesn’t only apply to clothing, same goes for all other items entering the home. If you are bringing in an item to replace one that isn’t working, make sure you are putting the old one out as soon as the new one comes in.

Be prepared to donate

I keep a box or bag in my home for items I want to donate, it’s clearly marked “Donate” so all family members know where it can be found. We constantly place items in it that we no longer need or use. Once filled or every couple of weeks or so, we take it in to our local donation center and start again. It helps to keep the house clear of items that are not used by any of us.

Keep the counters clear

Cluttered counters or any horizontal surfaces can make an entire home look cluttered no matter how tidy the rest of the house is. It’s so easy to put something down on a surface with good intentions to get back to it later but never do. Keep all your flat surfaces clear of all clutter to maintain a neat and organized look.

Shop with a purpose

Never go shopping without a list and a need. Remember the old saying, don’t go shopping on an empty stomach? The same holds true for shopping of any kind, not just groceries. Without a purpose to go shopping you will bring home more than you want or need. This just adds expense and clutter to your life.

Tidy up when you leave a room

Pick up everything when you leave a room and put them where they belong.Related image Dirty dishes, books and magazines, electronic devices, everything. It takes just a few seconds and will help keep your rooms looking neat and organized. You may have to drill this into your spouse and kids a few times but soon they will get into the habit as well.

So, you see there are no real secrets to how your friends keep their homes looking so organized and clutter free. It just takes a bit of knowledge and practice. ClutterBGone works throughout the GTA and has a few other tips we would love to share with you. Just contact us here to get started on keeping your home clutter free.

 

Back To School Organization

back to school organizing

Whether you’re a parent that loves to have your kids home for the summer or a parent that can’t wait for the school year to begin, it’s time to get the kids organized for back to school. Being organized at the start of the year will lead to organization throughout the school year.

Leading up to school starting

I’ll bet there have been little to no restrictions on bed curfew through most of the summer. Start to wean them back on to a schedule a week or two ahead of school opening so they are not dragging their you know what from the very start of school.  You know your kids and their interests. Plan on which extracurricular activities they’re going to participate in during the school year and keep in mind that these activities, although beneficial, can impact their grades so make sure your child can balance both school and activities they participate in.

Shopping for school

Back to school shopping can be fun as well as daunting.  back to school organizingTry to purchase only what you require to start the year as you will find additional items need to be purchased as the year gets under way.  Try to have one binder for each subject or at the least have dividers to separate the subjects in one binder.  Remember the one in, one out rule on clothing too. Teens have an opinion and are not afraid to give it so have them come along when shopping.  It will go easier when they have some input. Bring your patience and negotiation skills as well as your wallet.

Study space

Students need a clean and quiet area to study in – no matter what they will tell you.  Set aside an area that is clear of all clutter and is relatively quiet for studying and have the student choose the time of day they want to study.  Giving them some input stands a better chance of them following the schedule.  Have this area stocked with the “tools of the trade” (pens, paper, etc.) so there are less interruptions during this study time.  A planner in this area can also be helpful to keep track of what is due when and which days of the week sports fall on.

Be organized prior to each day

Pack what is required the night before.  back to school organizingThis may be a challenge for you and your kids, but if you remember when you were a teen every minute of sleep in the morning is needed.  Packing the evening before will ensure that they have everything for the day so when they blow out of the house in the morning like a hurricane they will have all they need.  Throw a few healthy snacks into their bag, so when hunger sets in there is a lesser chance they will head to the junk food machines.

Teens have been through this before but still need assistance and sometimes a bit of a push to get ready for the new school year.  Making sure they are ready and organized will give them a head start and perhaps teach them a bit about being organized.  ClutterBGone has assisted many families in getting homes, rooms and home offices organized for the start of the school year.  If you require assistance you can reach us at info@clutterbgone.ca or 905-642-5669.

The Hall Entrance – A Case Study

organized hallway

First impressions are important, and your front door area is what people first see when they enter your space. I recently had the pleasure of organizing the main entranceway of a client’s home. My very first organizing job was a hall entry so I kind of have a soft spot for these spaces.

Renee is a married mother of three, with very active kids. Aside from her role as a mother and wife Renee is also an entrepreneur of a growing business run out of her GTA home, so things can get a little out of control when you’re being pulled in all directions. That’s when she called in ClutterBGone.

ZNews (a division of Zoomer Media) came along to film it all.

Sort

The first thing we did was sort all of the items that were in this area. Like items with like items. It’s an open area without a traditional hall closet so it can quickly become visually disorganized. Coats, boots, scarves and hats were all gathered and gone through with the client. Being spring we can take the fall and winter wear and set them aside for storage until next year.

Declutter

Next up, time to declutter! A family of five is going to have a lot of shoes, boots and coats. organized hallwaySome no longer fit or just aren’t worn. Others will be handed down to the younger kids. Items that are no longer required are going to be donated so others can use them. ClutterBGone is big on making sure that someone else can benefit or use things that no longer have a home in our client’s space. We like to promote an environmental friendly way to reduce, reuse and recycle. Our clutter does not belong in the ground, so we like to ensure something positive is achieved through our process. Keep in mind that the client is always in control of the decision-making process and determining where each item is destined to go. We’ll just help to give you a “nudge” now and again where needed and always keeping you on pace to get it all done in a timely manner.

Organize

Finally, the moment we’re all waiting for, it’s time to re-organize and finesse the space based on what is left. This is where we like to get creative. We put everything away in a neat and organized fashion. We also want to ensure everything is accessible to the client but also the little ones. Items are then containerized and labelled to ensure we leave you with a system to stay organized.

Before you knew it, we left with a very happy client who is now eager to have people come through the front door. A few items were donated so others can use what we didn’t need on this site. Renee and her family were very happy with the end result. As mentioned earlier, I have a soft spot for hall entryways, so I was really pleased to take this on. Thanks to ZNews for coming out. You can check out their short video of the job here.

Do you have an entrance or space that needs some organizing? Contact ClutterBGone here. We would be honoured to help organize your entry way too.