Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Month of Tips

While on The Clutter Diet Blog, I saw that there was a posting called Start the New Year Right: 31 Simple Tips for 31 Days. I clicked on the link in this blog and it took me to a January 2010 calendar. This calendar has one simple organizing tip for each day. Each thing is an easy 15 minute or so task designed to help get you more organized and decluttered by the end of January. By having a small task every day as opposed to many tasks once a week, decluttering seems less daunting and difficult. Thanks Lorie for this great breakdown!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Great Products at Fry's!

Jake and I were shopping at our neighborhood Fry’s grocery store in Prescott Valley and saw that they had a whole aisle just for natural household cleaners! They had Seventh Generation, Mrs. Meyers Clean Day products, Kiss My Face, Holy Cow, Howard Natuals and many other products.

Seventh Generation makes paper towels, diapers, dish washing detergent, laundry detergent, household cleaners, etc. They use 100% recycled paper and plastic, they use no chlorine, and make phosphate free cleaners.

Mrs. Meyers makes many different home cleaners in “aromatherapeutic” scents such as lavender, lemon verbena, basil, and more. They even have baby products. They are earth friendly and cruelty free. The products are biodegradable and have all natural ingredients.

Kiss My Face has natural and organic facial cleansers and products, soaps, and cosmetics which have no artificial colors, no unnecessary chemicals, have not been tested on animals, and have no animal ingredients.

Now I have stainless steel appliances and I love the way they look. However, I do not like cleaning stainless. It isn't easy. I've used many different types of cleaners you can find in a store. I've also tried olive oil which gave it a beautiful shine. Our dog Nico love the oil too and he licked our refrigerator leaving tongue marks which took about a month of cleanings to get off. I found a product called Howard Naturals stainless steel cleaner. It is a vegetable-derived cleaner with yummy fragrances such as "Energizing Grapefruit-Ginger." I used it tonight and it is wonderful! No streaks and a high shine. They also have a wood cleaner and polish and a wood preservative that I would like to try. There is a granite and counter top cleaner and even an upholstery cleaner. All of the Howard Naturals products are earth friendly, kid and pet safe.

Holy Cow cleaners are great (see my other blog and the posting titled "Holy Cow!" on October 22, 2008). They come in 4 formulas ranging from all purpose to degreaser. These products are "biodegradable and non-hazardous and contain NO solvents, NO VOCs (volatile organic compounds), NO toxins, NO alcohol, NO ammonia, NO harmful oxygen-based bleach cleaners, NO citrus-based products which may dissolve rubber or plastics, and non hazardous, so it's safe for you and your family as well as for your animals" and from experience, I know they really work! You can use them on almost anything such as granite, jewelry, carpet, and even degrease engine parts!

I’m so excited that our local Fry’s has started carrying these products. You can find them in the center of the store in the aisle with the organic grocery items.

I feel like this is a huge step in the right direction.

Monday, December 28, 2009

A New Goal

It has been 54 days since my last posting. Sad huh? Where has all the time gone? Well, this holiday season has recked havoc on my house and organizing. A lot of what was organized is no longer. It seems as though a lot of time was wasted looking for where I put things such as gift bags, wrapping paper, and Christmas gifts I bought months ago. Of course I put them all in a safe place where I would know exactly where they were. Yeah, didn't quite work out that way.

My goal last year was to conquer all of my projects by Christmas and I am sad to say, I did not achieve my goal so I am setting a new one. It is going to be smaller and less menacing. My new goal is to have my library closet (aka Mary Kay closet), office closet, and guest room closet organized and decluttered by March 16th. That way, my birthday, March 17th will be nice and clutter-free. After my birthday, I will set another goal. Eventually, I will have my whole house organized and decluttered, maybe by the end of the year and that is OK with me. I have a lot to do and not much free time. I can live with taking a full year to get my house perfect. I heard once, "You will never FIND time, you must MAKE it," and that is so true. "For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned." -Unknown

On a blog that I follow called The Clutter Diet Blog, I saw a posting dated December 22nd that I really liked called, "Ten Simple Ways to Be More Organized in 2010." This gives simple and practical ways to get organized. I subscribe to The Clutter Diet and I really do like it. Lorie Marrero really breaks down these daunting tasks into manageable "meal plans" each week. There is also a discussion board where you can post your questions about problem areas and professional organizers will respond to you and help you out. You can read all of the postings and get ideas from other people's questions and answers as well. I recommend this program to anyone wanting some guidance on decluttering. For about $15 a month, I think it is a bargain.

I'm trying to go green whenever possible around the house. On Real Simple I found an article called, "How Green Are You?" There are a lot of small changes that can really add up to big changes for our environment. I hope to become a mostly green home soon.

I think that I am also going to start blogging about ways to save money around the house. For $25 a year, yes a year, I signed up on a website called Practical Saver. A woman named Kara from our church started this website. On it, she posts grocery store ads and points out bargains. There are homemade gift ideas, bargain products, a discussion board, and links to other sites on the website. She shows a video on how to cut, organize, and use coupons on each shopping trip. I know other women who have used these techniques and actually save more money than they spend! I want to be like that. I'm not very good at this saving money thing yet, but I will be and I'll share my tale with you. While picking a new background for this blog, I noticed that The Cutest Blog On The Block had a "free coupon" section. I clicked on it and it took me to a page with quite a few links to free coupons and samples.

I am revisiting some of my favorite organizing blogs and websites and becoming more excited and motivated to reach my March 16th goal. I'll keep you posted on how it goes.