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The Organizette!, Issue #51 -- Planning in 2013
January 03, 2013

Welcome to the Newsletter. I hope you enjoy getting the newsletter and that it helps to keep you on track with your organizing goals. Remember, you can get a lot done in only 10 minutes of decluttering and organizing!

Table of Contents

-Did you know?
-Monthly Mission – Living room
-Check Out These Pages! – Relevant pages and new site additions
-Meal Planning


We just had a very nice Christmas. I love the excitement the kids bring to the holiday. But soon after it’s over I get that surge of energy and a strong desire to clean everything up, put things away and reclaim my home! I love that clean fresh start after taking down the decorations. The house seems so much larger and, well, clean, to help with that fresh start of the new year.

I have also sat down to think about my intentions for 2013. It’s more of a giant “to do” list of things I’d like to finish doing, start doing, or doing better at. Just a list to remind me what I want to focus on. However, I was looking back at my 2012 intentions and it seems that I sort of got side-tracked because I didn’t get to a lot of the things on that to do list! So, I intend to keep my list hanging in a visible spot this year to make sure I don’t forget what I plan to accomplish this year. For example, I have a list of books I’d like to read, so when I get spare time, I can look at that list and see what I’d like to tackle next, instead of wandering aimlessly doing nonsense, which can be easy to do.

One thing I’m still trying to get under control is email. The new method I started a couple months back seemed to work somewhat, but I’m still falling behind and I don’t like the idea of undone stuff hanging over my head. Urgent stuff is read and done, not so urgent stuff seems to be forgotten, so maybe it just isn’t all that important.

Here’s to a productive 2013. May we all get better organized, use our time more efficiently, and have more fun and laughter, because it’s good medicine, for whatever challenges us.

Did you know…

According to a 2003 study by Real Simple magazine, American women spend 55.2 minutes per day looking for misplaced items. That comes to 14 days a year! Two weeks! That’s a lot of time to be looking for stuff!

The Monthly Mission – Living room

Being that it’s the start of the new year, and January is also Get Organized Month, I suggest you make a list of things you’d like to get organized this year… a particular room, a closet, your kitchen table, a drawer, you name it. Keep this master list out and handy so you can refer to it and decide which project you want to tackle next. Break down larger tasks into smaller ones so you’re not overwhelmed or run out of time (ex. “Clean off coffee table”, “purge magazine rack”, etc. instead of simply saying “organize living room”.)

This month’s mission is to get your living room tidied up and working for you and your family’s needs. To read the monthly mission for January, click here.

Check Out These Pages!

Here are some pertinent pages on the website you may have missed along with any new pages.

Checklists Library - Looking for some checklists to help get ready for the holidays, to plan a party or to pack for a family trip? Find what you need here.

Before and After Photos - If you enjoy seeing before and after photos of organizing projects, you can find them all right here.

Living Room Storage Make-over - See how we recently re-organized our living room (play room) with a new Ikea wall unit that's great for storing lots of stuff.

The Family Wall Calendar - How to efficiently use a large family wall calendar to keep track of everyone's appointments and activities.

Home Filing System - Keep all your paperwork in order so you can find what you need at a moments notice, and learn what to keep and what to toss.

Garage Makeover - before and after photos of my personal garage makeover. See how we tackled the problems and ended up with a functional garage.

Streamline Your Morning Routine - Ideas to help you get out the door in the morning and be on time for work or school.

Bathroom Drawer Make Over - How to organize a bathroom drawer, an example with before and after photos.

Stop Clutter - Quick simple tips on how to stop the clutter from coming into your home in the first place.

New subscribers save 20% off Getting Organized Magazine when you order now through January 31, 2013. Print, digital or international. Use coupon code: GetOrgJan13

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Meal Planning

Getting organized isn’t just about putting things neatly away. It also has to do with stream lining systems in your home to save time, ease stress and keep messes from starting in the first place.

One of the biggest time savers I can think of is to do meal planning. I know there are many people that when 5 pm comes around, they ask the question “what’s for dinner?” In a panic, they look through their fridge and cabinets to see what they can put together. Oops, they’re missing an ingredient to make that, so they either have to find another option, or scurry off to the store. I understand that some people go to the grocery store several times a week. I do not like to be there any more than I have to. Once a week is it!

Meal planning doesn’t have to take a lot of time or effort. Here’s the basic idea:

  • Make a list by writing down the days of the week. Make sure that your grocery day coincides with the week you have planned out. (Ex. I always go shopping on Friday mornings so my week of meals starts with that Friday evening.)
  • Add any activities that might be going on that would affect your meal time plans (a dinner party, sports practice, etc.). You may want to plan easier meals on busy nights.
  • Jot down one meal per day and don’t forget to account for leftovers.
  • Check the ingredients needed for each meal and if you don’t have them on hand, write them down on your weekly grocery list.

That’s it! And now, you know what you’re having on each day of the week and you won’t have to make last minute trips to the grocery store. You can still be flexible too, if something should change, you can swap meal days because you still have all the ingredients. Think of all the extra time you’ll have and less stress because you’ll be going to the store only once a week, which is especially nice if you have to bring fussy kids along each time!

Now, once you get that routine down, you can fine tune it. Use your weekly grocery flyer to plan your meals around what’s on sale at the store. Or plan meals from what you have on hand that you need to use up.

For more details on meal planning, time saving, shopping tips and coupons, head on over to our Daily Time Savers page.

Enjoy a healthy organized 2013!

Until next time, happy organizing!

Tracy Greene

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