Archive for January, 2010

Clutter Control: The First Step in Getting Organized

January 29, 2010

The A & E reality show Hoarders is a shocking look into the lives of people who  have let clutter take over their loves. Granted these are extreme cases, with many underlying problems, but it doesn’t take very long before clutter can get out of control and become overwhelming.

How to Take Control of Clutter

The best way to get control of the clutter is to not allow it to get out of control in the first place. The old adage “A place for everything and everything in its place” is the key to being organized. Nothing is more frustrating than spending time looking for an item OR buying another black turtleneck sweater because you can’t find it in your closet.

Sort & Purge

It is best to tackle an organizing project one step at a time. Don’t expect to do every room of your house in just one day. Do it in small manageable bits. For instance, your closet: Go through your closet and pull out old clothes that no longer fit. Yes, I know, you are going to lose weight and wear those jeans one day.  And yes, that sweater may come back in style.  But do you really want to sacrifice valuable storage space for a 12 year old sweater with big shoulder pads?

  1. Make 4 piles: KEEP  DONATE or SELL   TRASH.
  2. The KEEP pile is for everything that you can use right NOW or within the next 6 months. Parting with your possessions is the difficult part of the process for many people. But consider this:
  3. Donating  those gently-worn  baby clothes and children’s toys  to a local charity will help someone less fortunate. Contact the Goodwill, Salvation Army or other charities. Many of them will pick up large items, such a furniture.
  4. Earn some extra cash by SELLING  items like electronics, old vinyl albums, DVDs and CDs at a garage sale or on Ebay com. (Even old magazines can be sold on Ebay. I once sold a 2 year old issue of a fashion magazine for $12.00.)
  5. Scanning or copying files onto a CD or storage drive will save tons of space in your office file drawers.

Organizing Your Stuff

Once you have eliminated the items you no longer need, you can begin to organize your new uncluttered space. There is an unlimited selection of products that can help you. The Container Store is an excellent place for storage boxes, baskets and shelving. Behind Closed Doors can create a shelving system that can transform a closet or home office. I also really like the Whitmor Storage Cubes at Target. They are great for storing toys, magazines and clothes and they come in a variety of colors.

You don’t have to buy a lot of specialty storage containers to keep your space organized. Simply folding and hanging clothes neatly in your closet will make it seem as though you have much more space. Now you are on your way to living an uncluttered life.

This is the 2nd post of a 4 part series on Getting Organized in 2010. Next week, we will discuss how automation and establishing a routine for regular tasks can save you time and money. Why not subscribe to My Personal Valet to receive updates.

Related Articles on Getting Yourself Organized

Planning Your Closet Makeover from The Container Store
Conquer Your Biggest Clutter Challenges from Real Simple
Uncluttering: Appreciate the Journey from Simply Stated
Five uncluttering things you can do in your office right now from UnClutterer

Just Announced: A Special Evening with the Pointer Sisters

January 26, 2010

Spend A  Special Evening with the Pointer Sisters

Winspear Opera House
Monday, March 8, 2010 @ 8:00 p.m.

A Special Evening with the Pointer Sisters hosted by Alliance Data is the 9th annual fundraising event benefiting Special Care & Career Services. In addition to raising community awareness about the agency, the event will raise proceeds to assist Special Care & Career Services in continuing its 46-year mission to build independence for children and adults with developmental disabilities.

The excitement is in the air as the legendary Pointer Sisters will JUMP their way into Dallas for a benefit concert on Monday, March 8, 2010. In 1983 the Pointer Sisters changed music history with the release of the album Break Out. Featuring now unforgettable Pointer Sisters classics including Grammy winning Automatic and Jump, along with Neutron Dance and Baby Come and Get It – this album went triple platinum. Also hidden in the album was I’m So Excited – a song that has been played more than 2.5 million times on the radio and sums up how Special Care & Career Services feels about our Special Evening with the Pointer Sisters!

Get ready to JUMP out of your seats and sing and dance with this group that will set the Winspear on FIRE!

Single Ticket Prices

Orchestra Terrace    ($107.50)
Mezzanine    ($82.50)
Dress Circle   (47.50)
Grand Tier   ($42.50)
Starlight Circle  ( 32.50)

Contact My Personal Valet  for more information about ordering tickets for this event.

Over the past eight years A Special Evening  has raised more than $1.5 million and allowed  them to continually expand their programs. The programs are setting new growth records every year and they continue to gain state and national recognition for their innovative programming and training. The proceeds from A Special Evening directly benefit Special Care & Career Service’s Supported Employment Services (SES) and Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) programs. SES helps capable people with cognitive disabilities (such as Down syndrome, Cerebral palsy, Autism, and others) train for, find and keep good jobs. The ECI program provides teams of specialists to work with babies and toddlers with developmental disabilities and delays to give them a greater chance for success in school.

Enjoy a FREE Meal at Trece

January 20, 2010

They say there is no such thing as a free lunch, maybe not. But you can get a free dinner at Trece or Villa-O. Every Monday at Trece or Villa-O you can enjoy a fabulous 2-Course Mexican or Italian Meal, compliments of the house. It is their way of saying “Thank You” to their valued guests on their mailing list .

Sign up for their mailing list to get more information and take advantage of this great deal.

What Women Want…More Time

January 19, 2010

The holiday season is behind us and all the gift-giving  is over  (at least for the next 11 months). You may have received a bottle of your favorite perfume, a lovely bathrobe, a new iPhone or some other wonderful gift for Christmas, but what many women wished they would have received was a little more time in their already busy days.

With the demands of working full-time outside the home, household chores and an ever-growing to-do- list, most women simply do not have enough time in the day to get it all done. According to a survey on ForbesWoman, the overwhelming opinion was:  Women want more time.

Time for the Important Things in Life

Finding personal time for relaxation and fitness can be a challenge for many women. Making time for family and some “me time” is not easy. In addition, due to the reduction in workforce at many companies, you may be forced  to take on even more duties and responsibilities on you job, which can add pressure at home.

Take the kids to soccer practice…pick up the dry-cleaning…prepare dinner…finish the annual report…laundry…go to the gym…spend time with the kids…romantic dinner with your husband.

How will you find the time?

What is the Solution?

There are a few things you can do to ‘buy back’ a few precious hours of your hectic day. Let’s look at a few proven time savers:

  1. Organization: Clutter and a disorganized living (or work) place make life more difficult.
  2. Establish a Routine: Schedule or automate regular tasks like having your dry cleaning delivered, preparing and freezing meals
  3. Ask for help when you need it: You don’t have to do it all alone. There are quick fixes for some of your everyday tasks that will save you time during your busy day.

This is the first in a weekly series that will help you find ways of getting things done and finding more time in your schedule for the more important things in your life. If you have ideas and suggestions of things that have worked for you, please share them with us. Leave a comment with your tips for getting organized and saving time.

Next week: Organization.

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