Tuesday, December 21, 2010

8 Gifts That Don't Clutter:Consumable Gifts!

Tired of gifts being returned or unused? Do gift certificates seem too impersonal? Give these gifts that will be used almost immediately!
1. Homemade preserves: Jams, jellies, pickles and beets — just like Grandma used to make! Dig through family recipes, search online or go to the local market and pick up a few bottles of goodies. Place in a basket or cloth bag, and voila!, the perfect present.
2. Wine: You can purchase wine at the liquor store or from a local winery — or make your own, if you are really ambitious. You can pick up nice, wines for less than $20. They are perfect for office gift-exchanges where you never know who may be receiving. If you are looking for something more high-end, try a bottle of dessert wine or a nice Scotch.
3. Candles: You can buy from local craftspeople or try a candle-making kit. Make each candle one-of-a-kind, and attach a small card. In your own handwriting, describe how unique it is.
4. Meat and cheese: A cheese basket and a stick of cured salami makes not only a nice and tasty gift, but is good for someone who doesn’t have time for Christmas cooking.
5. Charitable donation: Give the gift of giving! This is a nice idea, particularly if the recipient has an attachment to a certain cause. Perhaps a relative supports the local children’s hockey team or they volunteer at the local Boys and Girls Club. A donation on their behalf to something they care about is sure to put a smile on their face.
6. Magazine subscription: This is a great idea for any age. Children love getting their own mail, and magazines encourage reading. It’s also a perfect gift for the avid fisherman or hunter.
7. Day/Night out: It could be something as simple as dinner and a movie. Or how about an afternoon of side-by-side massages, or getting creative at a paint-your-own-pottery place? Better yet, let them choose! The true gift here is the gift of time together, so this is a good gift for someone who you have been meaning to call or someone who hasn’t gotten enough of your attention lately.
8. Homemade nutz n’ boltz: — Make up a big batch of delicious homemade nutz n’ boltz, then divide into mason jars, decorated coffee tins or cellophane bags. Some cereal boxes actually include the recipe on the side, but here is one favourite just in case:


Nutz n’ Boltz

- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
- 2 tablespoons garlic salt
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups Cheerios
- 4 cups Corn Chex
- 4 cups Rice Chex
- 4 cups Wheat Chex
- 2 cups cashew or mixed nuts
- 2 cups pretzels

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
1. Melt butter in large baking dish (12 x 17-inch or so) in oven.
2. Stir salt and sauce into melted butter.
3. Add cereals and nuts. Mix well.
4. Bake at 250 degrees F for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
5. Put on absorbent paper to cool before storing in airtight container.
6. You may use any combination of the dry ingredients to your own liking; just keep the same ratio of dry ingredients to liquid.

Think outside the box for gift ideas that will create long lasting memories and appreciation from your friends and family. These non-clutter gift ideas are something that anyone can enjoy!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Keep Your White Christmas Green

It’s simple. Christmas can be a wasteful time of year. More waste can mean more damage to the environment. Try these simple tips to keep your white Christmas green:
1) When choosing a real tree, ask where it can be returned so it can be turned into mulch: If you have the space, buy a potted tree that you can either re-pot for another year’s use or replant outside.
2) Artificial Christmas trees are realistic these days and come in a variety of shapes and sizes: They are easy to put together and even easier to take down. Make sure it will last several years, because fake trees are usually made of plastic and aren’t recyclable.
3) Switch to LED lights: They are available in indoor and outdoor versions in a variety of colours, and have an average lifespan of 100,000 hours. They can use up to 95 per cent less energy than larger lights.
4) Cut back on your holiday lighting: Smaller displays can be as attractive as larger ones. Instead of putting lights all around the outside of the house, select a couple of bushes and string the lights around them. Put the lights on a timer so they come on when it turns dark and go off before you go to bed.
5) Go paperless: There are several alternatives to gift-wrapping. You can use jars, bottles, photo boxes or cloth bags, among other things. If you decide to use paper, make sure it is recyclable so it doesn’t end up in the landfill. Try to stay away from glittery, shiny paper because it is harder to break down.
6) Buy less: This doesn’t just mean buying for fewer people or spending less on them. Give gifts that are personal, unique and take up less space. How about a gift certificate for a service such as an oil change or a massage? When you do buy, try to think in green ways, such as buying local or buying something made from recyclable material.
7) Bring back old traditions: For your tree, string popcorn and cranberries and make other homemade ornaments. Instead of throwing a huge soirée, have a small group of friends over for games and homemade eggnog. Or how about throwing a popcorn-stringing party?
Christmas can be a stressful time of year for many people, without the added weight on your shoulders of worrying what you are doing to the environment. Many of these tips are not hard and require little or no change to your holiday traditions. While everyone is dreaming of a white Christmas, you can be at ease that yours is green.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Organize Anything Gift Certificates

Do you have someone on your holiday list that is impossible to shop for? No idea what to get the friend that seems to have everything? Try an Organize Anything gift certificate for Christmas this year! It’s the perfect choice for the person in your life who needs a helping hand getting a handle on the clutter and disorganization in their life.
Whether they need organizing help at home or in the home office, Organize Anything can help. Know someone who could use some extra assistance getting their productivity up? We have a gift certificate for that. Know a student who wants some making their study habits more efficient? Have a grandchild moving out this spring to go to university? Buy a downsizing or relocating gift certificate for their parents.
Our gift certificates options are wide open so that they can be tailored to meet your needs. We offer professional organizing and productivity services. We also are available for public speaking engagements, teaching seminars and life coaching. Visit our website, www.organizeanything.com for all the details.
Please contact us if you aren’t sure if we offer the service you’re looking for organize1@organizeanything.com or (902) 233-1577. And don’t forget to follow us on Twitter too (@organizeanow)!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Alternative Gift Wrapping Ideas

Sometimes wrapping gifts can be equally as stressful as buying — and sometimes equally as expensive. Here are some quick and cost-effective ways to nix the wrapping this year.
1) Baskets: They come in all sizes and shapes and can make even simple gifts look attractive. Packing your gifts in baskets doubles the pleasure as most will reuse as holders for bread, towels or fruit, or simply as an accessory. Wrap your goody-filled basket in cellophane and tie with a ribbon.
2) Tins: Antique and reproduction tins make useful and decorative additions to any kitchen. They are ideal for packing such food gifts as gourmet coffees and teas, spices, candy, cookies and cakes, and they will most likely continue to be used.
3) Jars: A Mason jar is the perfect container for homemade condiments, preserves or store-bought candies. Tie a red-and-white cloth napkin around the top and secure with a plaid or gingham taffeta bow.
4) Cloth bags: You can make these by sewing two colourful pieces of cloth together and inserting a drawstring, or you can purchase bags at a store or online. Small bags can be reused to hold jewellery, while larger bags are great for laundry.
5) Photo boxes: This saves a lot of time. Simply place a gift in the photo box and add a tag and a bow. Photo boxes come in an array of colours, patterns and sizes and you can find them for almost any occasion, giving the gift the feeling of being wrapped.
6) Recyclables: You can use movie posters, newspapers, pieces of fabric, comics, maps or whatever else you have lying around the house! Depending on the occasion or the recipient, you can be as basic or as creative as you like.
7) Ribbons and Bows: If something is large enough — or too awkward to wrap — avoid the wrapping process all together and stick some curly ribbons or a pretty bow on it. Scraps of coloured yarn can work for those who are trying to be extra thrifty.
8) Envelopes: For gift cards or gifts of money, place in a card and envelope. Write a letter on the outside of the envelope, roll up and place in a bottle to create a ‘message in a bottle’ effect — or punch a hole through the corner of the envelope and tie a colourful ribbon through it to hang it on a tree.
Being creative and using items around the house can save you time and money. Have fun with these great ideas – the recipient of the gift will enjoy your creative thoughtfulness.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Holiday Shopping for Those Who Have it All or Are Difficult to Buy For

Are you struggling this time of the year, trying to figure out what gifts you will get for everyone on your list? There always seems to be that one person who appears to already have it all. Instead of cluttering up your family’s and friends’ homes with more objects, why not give them something they will really appreciate? Here are some ideas on what to give that “hard-to-buy person” this holiday season. They will be pleased with their gift, and you will be pleased that you followed these tips.
1) The gift certificate is often looked at as a last minute afterthought. However, letting the receiver choose their own gift will almost always ensure that they get something they will like better than what someone else would have picked for them. Figure out their favourite places to shop and give them a gift card. Choose a store they enjoy, but may not always shop at. Many people always spend their money on their family members and friends, so gift certificates are a nice way to allow them to splurge on themselves.

2) Movie money is a great idea for someone who enjoys a night out but doesn’t always make it happen. Many people only go see a “must see” movie because the cost of the movie and snacks are so high. This way they can enjoy a night out without worrying about their budget. Add an offer to baby-sit to complete the evening.

3) Everyone appreciates looking at pictures of their loved ones. Take an old photograph and have it professionally restored to look brand new, or take a new photograph and have it resized and professionally framed. If there is a celebrity or picture in a magazine you think your friend would like, scan it and increase its size to make a mini poster or picture.

4) Tickets to a sporting event, play or musical are always great gift ideas. Buying tickets for a show as a present also eliminates the worry of getting them something they already own. This is also a good gift for someone who you may not know very well. You can easily find out a sport or team someone likes, or if he or she is an opera or country music fan.

5) Not only are homemade gifts more personal and unique, they are guaranteed to put a smile on the person’s face knowing you put such time and effort into their gift. If you know they have a sweet tooth, whip up a holiday sweet treat. My favourite gift is my friend’s homemade macaroni and cheese. She provides me with this delectable comfort food in portions that I freeze and enjoy for months to come. What are your special recipes? This gift requires only some time, ingredients and loving care. Or perhaps you create a recipe book of childhood favourites complete with photos.

6) Look around your house for materials to use and items to re-gift. Re-gifting is fine as long as you believe the gift is appropriate for the receiver and you think they will truly like it.

7) If you are buying for individual family members, why not put the cash together and buy a family present, like a foosball game for their family room or software for the computer. This is a good way to bring families together, and allows you to buy more expensive gifts that you would not buy individually.

8) People often discreetly let you know what they want, so pay attention to hints, listen and make notes. Better yet, ask them to make notes and prepare a list of items they would like and the particular shops they enjoy.
Remember that it is the thought that counts, so it’s never too early to start thinking about what to give the person who has everything or is difficult to buy for.
If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com.

© 2006 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553
www.organizeanything.com
Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Room to Spare

What do you do with that extra room in the house? The one that has no real purpose except to collect things? Or you may have an empty room or two when the last of the kids have moved out or gone away to school. We end up with lots of remnants of their lives, but no kids. This room becomes either a shrine with no real purpose or a place to collect all the things we don’t know where to put.

We are so often cluttered with the stuff from grown children that gets left behind as they get established elsewhere on their own. They like to have the unpaid additional storage space in a parent’s home or they just don’t want to make any decision about what to do with their things. So, their things are left taking up lots of precious space, even though the stuff may not be so precious to anyone anymore.

What to do with a spare room:

1. Dump the junk- Don’t waste that spare room with an accumulation of junk. It won’t go away on its own. Make a plan to clear out the clutter and disperse of the goods to people who can better use them. Your home’s square footage is too valuable not to be using it.

2. Guestroom– Create a spa-like retreat for your guests. Include reading materials and brochures for local activities. Have some hotel-like amenities ready to go in a decorative basket so they feel welcome, knowing you have thought of their needs.

3. Craft or hobby room– You finally have a place to do your scrapbooking, sewing, or painting! Let this room be your private studio where creativity flows.

4. Gifting- Have a room just for gift giving. Keep ribbons, gift bags, tags, and wrapping paper in the room along with any items you have purchased ahead of time for gifts. Don’t forget the scissors and tape. So whenever you need a present, it will be a snap to put one together.

5. Exercise room- This does not mean you have to have all the big equipment that you find at a gym, but if the area is designated as a workout space, you are more likely to do your yoga, palates, and strength training. Clear out the room and put your yoga mat, weights, TV, audio equipment and workout DVDs in it.

6. Home office- Instead of letting paper pile up on your coffee table or kitchen counter, set up an area to pay bills and answer mail. Put everything you need for these activities in the room including a desk, stamps, stationary and pens. Create a simple filing system and get a jump on tax preparation for next year.

7. Mediation room– Oh to have some peace and quiet–create it! Don’t allow anything in this area that doesn’t bring you peace and tranquility. Some suggested contents include a water fountain, floor cushions, candles, incense, and chimes. Selected reading and audio materials will also set the mood. A serene start or end to you day, or a quick get away to rejuvenate.

8. Room to spare, room to share– create that media room, music, pool, puzzle, card or board game room and invite friends over for a night of fun and hospitality.

9. Renovators rescue- Use the empty room as the spare room to hold addition furniture, etc. when you are renovating – flooring especially is difficult as you need room to move all your stuff. When all your renovations are complete, rework your spare room into one of the above suggestions.

Often your spare room can be used for several of these purposes. So next time you walk by that room, stop a moment to think about the possibilities. Take the next steps today to give that spare room some real purpose and turn it into a room that will give you a feeling of satisfaction and relaxation.

Colette Robicheau is a consultant, coach, and public speaker with Organize Anything offering corporate, residential, and personal organizing services. Contact Colette at info@organizeanything.com or visit www.organizeanything.com.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Never lose your cell phone again!

Always running around looking for your phone? Do you have to search madly for you cell phone when it rings? Here are some tips to help you never lose your cell phone again:

1) When you are out, always store your cell phone in the same pocket of your coat, purse or briefcase so that way it will be in the same place each time. It sounds simple but deciding on this designated place and sticking to it will save you time, frustration, panic and maybe even money. No one wants to bother with the expense of replacing your phone not to mention the issues associated with losing your phone’s private information.
2) As soon as you get home or at the office place your phone in a cell phone holder so you will know where to grab it when it rings or when you are on the way out the door.
3) Set up your cell phone holder by an outlet which you will always use to charge your phone. The outlet should be visible. Be careful when creating this docking station at home to make sure there is no chance of water reaching your phone. Many homes today have multiple users and the docking area to recharge is scattered around the kitchen, don’t forget that just a few drops of water can sometimes ruin a phone.
Keep your phone in a case with a clip, so you can attach it to your pocket or your purse. This often forces you to keep it in the same place every time and you also are more likely to notice if it is not there.
4) Have you ever lost your phone under the seat in the car? Keeping your phone on silent or vibrate is often a great idea for meetings and at lunch but this causes real havoc if you are trying to locate it. Remember to return your phone to normal mode as soon as possible.
5) Make sure your phone is always well charged. If your phone goes dead you won’t be able to call it. Having an additional charger in the car is a handy way to get the recharging you need and doesn’t leave you stuck without communication on those long road trips.
6) Always check for your cell phone when leaving a public area such as a restaurant or public washroom. And speaking of washrooms many a cell phone as taken an unfortunate dip into the toilet bowl and the results of this voyage are nothing to write home about.

Following these tips will simplify your high tech life. A little extra thought and planning can save you time later. Now you can actually run out the door without running around looking for your phone first.

About the Author:
Colette Robicheau is a consultant, coach, and public speaker with Organize Anything offering corporate, residential, and personal organizing services. Contact Colette at info@organizeanything.com or visit www.organizeanything.com.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Get Ready to Recycle!

Most people really want to recycle but often find it difficult to make it happen. The first step to organizing your recyclables is to get all the materials you need in one place. Here are some items you should have on hand:

String or twine
Bins, trash cans
Grocery bags
Washing supplies
Paper shredder
Deodorizer, baking soda
Blue or clear bags (if applicable)
Bin liners, boxes for organics (if applicable)


Your recycling should be in a confined area that is easy to get to but out of sight. Think about where each of these activities occurs and select a location for storing your recyclables that is convenient based on where your recyclables come from (kitchen, office, living room, etc.) and where they go (basement, garage, straight to the curb).

Select appropriate sized bins for each type of recyclable and the room they are needed in. Label bins so that household members and guests are clear on where to dispose of items. For those unfamiliar with your city’s recycling system have a list of items that go in each bin and be sure to list things that should not go in (e.g., used tissue). Post this in your recycling area. Try sprinkling baking soda in the bottom of trash cans and recycle bins to keep odours down. Sprinkle some in each time you change the bag and just add hot water when it is time to clean them out.

Select a spot to put bottles that need to be rinsed before recycling and do so at the end of washing you dishes each day. You can also opt to wash things right away. If you don’t have a small green bin for your kitchen, an ice cream or cat litter container are great air tight receptacles to prevent fruit flies and odour. Be sure to empty your bins regularly to prevent the growth of mould.

Have a shelf or container with scissors, string, bags, and bin liners nearby. This will make the recycling process easier. Keep a box of baking soda in your recycling area to keep things fresh. Try to break down boxes right away to save space and store them alongside your bins. Any paper with personal information on it (credit card offers, bank statements, addresses) should be shredded. Put a blue bag right in the shredder receptacle to make emptying it easier.

The most important part of keeping your recyclables organized is to create a routine. Set a time or day where you empty bins, bundle cardboard, empty the green bin, and remove recyclables to their larger holding spot. Be sure to keep track of your next pick up day and alternative pick up dates for holidays.

Recycling can be simplified when you involve the whole family, and everyone knows the systems and sticks to the routine. Encourage children to get started and teach them the recycling routines. You are never too young or old to learn how to reduce waste and practice proper recycling.

If you enjoyed this article, please check out my website for more helpful information and tips! You can sign up for our newsletter and see what other services we offer.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Healthier Workplace Leads to Healthy Returns

You know that the key to a long and happy life is good health, but it also makes good business sense. Consider this: Physically fit employees not only take fewer sick days, they also are more productive, and that helps to keep your bottom line healthy too. While you can’t push your employees to adopt a healthier lifestyle, you can encourage and provide them with opportunities to get and stay fit, such as:

- Take stock of your office vending machine. Replace high-fat and high-calorie items like pop and chips with more healthy and nutritious snacks.

- Do you have an office cafeteria? Look at adding health-smart items to the menu.

- When it comes time for a team-building retreat or exercise, why not choose a program or location with physical activity opportunities?

- Reward employees who make healthy choices. For example, sponsor your company’s softball team.

- Office events and parties are great opportunities to promote healthy living while having fun, like a skating party.

- Create a team of executives and employees to look at and promote the benefits of good health in your business.

- Install a water cooler. Drinking more water is essential to losing weight and staying healthy.

- Offer a weekly lunchtime program where employees can learn how to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Make it fun and interactive; have cooking classes with a local chef where employees can learn how to prepare more nutritious meals, and then sample them for lunch.

- Make your office more exercise friendly. Install a shower for employees who bike to work or jog at lunch.

- Because fitness club fees can be expensive, look into corporate rates to give your employees added incentive to get fit.

- Make physical fitness a contest between departments. This is a great way to build team spirit in your company. Start a walking or running club and keep a weekly tally of weight lost or kilometers walked and offer a monthly prize to the team with the best overall performance.

When it comes to changing your employees’ lifestyles and habits, think of it as an investment. It takes considerable time, effort and dedication, but it’s one that will result in significant returns for your employees (an improved quality of life) and for you (improved profitability and profits).

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

When a Shoe Thing is No Longer a Good Thing - When to Say Goodbye to Those Extra Pairs

Many gals have a shoe thing. A shoe thing is more than just having a reasonable amount of shoes to wear, it’s about collecting them and not letting any of them go. It’s hard to let go of items that have memories attached, cost a lot of money or were a gift from a loved one. Most people, however, do not have enough closet and storage space for shoes that are not being worn. Discard any that are damaged, and donate pairs that are too small or unstylish to you. Now’s the time to give old boots the boot and kick those broken high heels to the curb once and for all.

It’s a good time to retire a pair of shoes when:

1. They are scuffed up and worn so they lack support and tread and cannot be repaired.

2. Your toes can’t move in them and the last time you wore them left you in pain and having to rush for a chair.

3. You are waiting to stretch the shoe before you can actually leave your home in it.

4. You really can’t walk in them properly no matter how hard you try.

5. You are waiting for the style to come back.

6. You are regularly hiding your shoe purchases from your partner.

7. The odour your shoe gives off arrives in the room before you do.

8. You are holding onto certain footwear for sentimental reasons.

9. You have dozens of shoes for every activity known to man. The problem is you don’t do half of those activities.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Law of Subtraction

We live in a world where bigger is better and more is all the rage. When we are trying to get the life we want, it often involves adding something new: a new routine to lose weight, exercising more, taking a class or starting a new activity. Also, we are always looking for more time–most of us want to spend more time with our friends and family. Lately, we have heard many promises that if you just put out the intent, then it will all happen for you. In our business we have found that this simply is not true for most of our clients. Our clients’ lives are so packed full already that adding just one or two more things in to the mix or the thought of adding anything else is just too overwhelming. Simply willing something you would like to happen is not enough.

We live in a high pressured, busy, success driven, in search of perfection and not excellence type of world. Often you can’t get what you really want because your current lifestyle is so jam-packed with things you don’t want, that there is just no room for anything else.

So before you contemplate adding anything else in your life, practice the law of subtraction. Remember, when you say “yes” to something you have to say “no” to something else. So let’s say “no” to some things, so we have the space to say “yes” to things we want.

You can do this in many ways:


-If your boss is piling more tasks on an already full plate – ask what could get postponed or handed off to someone else.

-If you are making impromptu purchases of clothing, furniture and accessories – ask yourself what you are going to let go of that you already own.

-If you start worrying about a future event – ask yourself what nice things you won’t have time to think about as a result of this worrying. Are you willing to give up those nice thoughts for something that may not happen, alter your mood and cause frustration?

Stop spending time with toxic people who don’t make you feel good and find more time to spend with the friends that empower you and make you feel great.

-You no longer do your children’s laundry or pack their lunches and have more time to do the things you would like to around your home.

-You spend less time sitting in front of the TV or your computer and you find the time to get moving and do some exercise.

-You say no to extra volunteer activities and have more time for activities with your partner.

It has been my experience that less is really more.


You don't always have to say "yes", even if it is something that you feel you are obligated to do. Saying "no" makes room for the things that matter most in life. Practice the Law of Subtraction and less can actually make you happier and healthier.

Colette Robicheau, President of Organize Anything, is a consultant, coach, and speaker who helps people set priorities, stay focused, manage time, and transitions so they can achieve their goals, grow their business and be more successful. Contact her at www.coletterobicheau.com and sign up for her newsletter of useful tips at www.organizeanything.com.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Time or Task? You choose How to Get Things Done

When it comes to adding things to the "To Do" list think in terms of describing your goal as a time or a task. Remember we can’t do a project. We have to break it down in to smaller manageable pieces.

Time is when you designate an amount of time in hours or minutes and you simply stop when you are complete. You are free to stop because you have reached your goal and then you can get on with your day or weekend.

Task is when you describe what needs to get done by just one specific area, location or job. This goal is complete when that individual task is finished. It is vital that you are very specific as to what your task goal looks like.

We are often overwhelmed when we approach our goals because everything just looks too big. We spend so much time worrying about getting it all done and we get nothing done.

To avoid this try the following:
1. Think about how you can break things down in to smaller and smaller manageable pieces that are easier to get you started.
2. What are the beginning and the end of the job?
3. Decribe your time or task so you are able to say “yes” or “no” to whether you completed your goal.

Here are some examples of some ways you can approach you’re to do list for different areas of your life:

Garage
Time: Two hours, Saturday morning before noon.
or
Task:
-Sort all sporting goods
-Throw out broken items
-Donate unused
-Store the rest

Bedroom closet
Time: 15 minutes each time I put the laundry away
or
Task:
-Organize all pants on pant hangers by colour, length and season
-Repeat for shirts
-Donate unused items

Desk
Time: 15 minutes at the end of each day
or
Task:
-File two inches of paper from a pile to be filed
-Repeat

By setting your goals by time or task you can free yourself by creating more of a sense of completion to those somewhat overwhelming projects. Do the allotted time or perform the allotted task. It’s your choice.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Take the Ten Minute Challenge

When you only have a few minutes before going to lunch, attending a meeting, or leaving for an appointment, it often seems useless to start any important or involved task. But those few minutes could be a great start to getting yourself organized or chipping away at a larger project.

On average this “transition time” can add up to about 40 minutes a day. This can be even more for those who commute. Think of how much you could get done with an extra 40 minutes every work day!

Instead of wasting this time, take the 10 minute challenge! Try some of the following suggestions when you have a few minutes to kill. You can even get the kids involved by setting a timer and making it a game.

 Make a list of the first few steps you need to take for a large project and, if you have time, you can start the first step. This could be making a list of materials you need or notes on who you need to call. You can take a few minutes to gather everything you will need so that the next time you have another few minutes you can dig right in and start another step with ease.

 Make an appointment with the dentist, doctor or other practitioner.

 Sort through the mail, open everything and discard all the envelopes and non essentials to recycling.

 Tidy up your email- deleting and filing.

 Straighten your desk.

 Look at your schedule for the next month and find a good time that you could see a friend you haven’t seen in a while. Make a quick call or email to see if they are available.

 Decide your meals for next week and make a grocery list.

 Organize your briefcase, purse, book bag, or gym bag.

 Grab a donation bag or box and look around the room or in a closet for a quick pick of some things you no longer use or love and pass them along.

 Waiting time can also be used to further your life goals. For example you can use commuting time to read a book or learn a new language (on audio for those who are driving). Research a topic of interest on the internet, start the plans for your next vacation or check schedules for a recreational activity you were only pondering.


The ten minute challenge is a great way to squeeze a little more activity into your busy schedule!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Keeping Things on Track: Organize for Success

Back to school! We all start the year with the intention to be organized and on top of schoolwork, bills, work, and obligations. It doesn’t take long for the best intentions to turn into the worst habits. Let these organizing tips help you start the year off right and keep things on track all year.

The Two-Minute Rule. If it takes less than two minutes to do, do it now. Your friends can wait two minutes for you to finish something. This will prevent you from having to sit for hours sorting through papers and will ensure you have a clean workspace so you don’t end up doing your homework on your bed (where falling asleep is a big possibility!). Keeping on top of your piles of papers will help prevent forgotten assignments, lost phone messages, misplaced email addresses and damaged forms and applications.

Don’t Carry Around a Bottomless Pit. Don’t let your schoolbag become a bottomless pit of papers and garbage. Make a habit of cleaning out your back pack every night when you take your textbooks and notebooks out. Stray papers shoved into your bag on your way out of class, at extracurricular events, and picked up around school (promotional flyers, brochures, newspapers) have a way of getting crumpled up at the bottom of your bag and forgotten. Put them in their proper place! If you don’t need the information or don’t intend to go to the event –throw out the flyer. Put graded assignments in a designated binder or folder for that class. If you need to dispute your course grade later you want to have all of your graded materials. You may also want to study from your past tests.

Inboxes Aren’t Just for Email. Desktop inboxes aren’t just for corporate executives. Having an inbox for things you need to complete and an outbox for things that need to be dropped off (mail, assignments, forms, money owed) can be a great way to stay on top of what needs to be done. As long as you don’t allow things to pile up and get forgotten at the bottom of your inbox, it can keep you moving through things.

File This Under ‘Awesome’. An accordion file is a portable and affordable alternative to a filing cabinet. Make sections for bills, school, jobs, housing, health, and extracurricular activities. Keep all your information in the accordion file so you only have to look in one place when you need something. This will help keep your bulletin board clear of clutter so you have more room for photos, mementos, and current event information. It’s also easy to move.

Don’t Let a Red Sock Ruin Your Day. Try using a sectioned hamper or two separate hampers so that you can sort lights from darks as soon as they are dirty. This will save you time when you are ready to do a load of wash (and prevent a red sock from turning your whites pink!). Having two different colored hampers will help you remember which is which. Try keeping laundry soap, fabric softener, quarters, and other laundry necessities in a basket so that you can easily carry everything you need without losing anything on your way to the laundry room.

Following these tips will save you time and give you a great start to staying organized this school year. After all, there are more important things to be doing than tidying up!

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Roadmap for a Healthy Business Trip

A good business trip takes careful planning. So does maintaining a healthy lifestyle and a healthy weight. If you travel frequently in your line of work, or for your business, you know how difficult it can be to keep up good habits and how easy it is to slip into bad ones. The good news is that, with a little added preparation and smart choices, you can considerably reduce that risk. Here’s how:

Set realistic goals – Goals will help you stay focused while you are away, but be realistic. For example, instead of losing weight, why not set maintaining your current weight as your goal?

Be prepared – It’s easier to maintain your health and weight with a little preparation. For example, call ahead to the hotel where you are staying and see if they have a fitness centre. Or, for frequent stays, consider a pass to a local facility. And be sure to take along your workout gear.

Scan the menu – Taking time to review your choices will help you make healthy ones.

Consider avoiding foods with descriptions such as ‘fried,’ ‘crispy,’ or ‘battered.’ They are likely high in fat. Instead, look for high-fiber meals, like a baked potato or salad.

For baked potatoes and salads, avoid high-calorie dressings and sour cream, or extras such as meat, cheese, egg and croutons. Or, ask to have dressings and toppings on the side so you can control your portions.

Ordering a small or kid-size portion. This is a great way to reduce the amount of calories, sodium and fat you consume.

Eat on schedule – Skipping meals or not eating for long periods increases your hunger and the risk that you will overeat when you finally make time for food.

Curb the urge to splurge – Keep snacks like graham crackers and fruit on hand in your car, bag or briefcase. This will help keep your appetite in check when standing at the buffet table or ordering a meal.

Forego fast food where possible – If fast-food restaurants are your only option, remember that many now have health-smart choices. Be sure to ask for the nutritional information and check the calorie, fat and fiber counts before ordering. Often, these choices aren’t healthier than what is on the main menu. Avoid the value meals; the calorie content is generally equal to two meals.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com

Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
www.organizeanything.com
Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Study Strategies

Exam time can be a stressful time of year, especially for new college and university students. For most students, it’s not WHAT they have to study that gives them the stress, but HOW to study it. Organize your study time and exam-writing strategies to have a calm and collected exam period.

1) Make sure you have sufficient time to study everything: Review chapters every week so that you don’t have to cram everything in the night before. This is why attending class is so important. If you have questions, go to the instructor weeks before the exam, not the day before.

2) Attend all tutorials: If there aren’t any, find a tutor; it is worth the money. Most instructors will be able to provide you with a list of tutors. Arrive with a list of questions to ask, and make sure the most important ones are covered. If you are still unsure about anything, ask the instructor.

3) Ask the instructor what to expect: Are there multiple-choice or essay questions? If you know what to expect, you are less likely to panic and go blank during the exam.

4) Get copies of past exams: Even if the questions aren’t recycled, the format may be similar. It can give you an idea of what questions might be asked and which areas to focus on when you’re studying. Save one old exam that you haven’t even looked at to use as a pre-test. How well you do on this will give you an indication of how prepared you are.

5) Study in the library or someplace quiet: Sit alone at a desk or in a cubicle. Leave your cell phone, laptop and anything else that will distract you at home. If you aren’t the type who can learn by yourself, bring a friend to quiz you.

6) Make a list of all the topics that you need to know: Cover each of them one by one and cross them off of the list as you become an expert on each one. If it helps, make up a list of possible questions and have a friend quiz you.

7) Create acronyms: If the answer is in a list, use the first letter of each word. For essay questions, you can either make a list of the key points or key words to use throughout the essay.

8) Go to bed early: It is important to be well rested for an exam. Any time spent studying while you are exhausted will be wasted anyway, as you are less likely to retain the information. Wake up early, have a well-balanced breakfast and review your notes before the exam.

9) Read through the exam before you start: Sometimes, later questions can give you hints or trigger your memory for earlier questions. Answer the easiest questions first. Don’t panic if you don’t know the answer right away; move on to the next question and come back to the ones you missed later on.

10) If time allows, make a brain map before you even look at the exam: Take the first five minutes to write down everything you can remember, including all of the acronyms you created while studying, on a scrap piece of paper or the back of the exam.

11) Use correct grammar and write legibly: If the instructor cannot understand what you are trying to say, he or she cannot grade your exam.

12) If you are unsure of what a question is asking for, ask the instructor to clarify: Don’t be afraid to ask, because other people are probably wondering the same thing.

13) Divide your time and don’t rush: Some instructors will even give you suggested time allotments for questions. Spend the most time on the questions that are worth the most. Make sure to leave enough time to answer all questions.

14) Even if you only know part of the answer, write it down: Most instructors give partial marks, and sometimes that partial mark can be the difference between a pass and a fail or an A and an A+.

Remember to plan ahead so that you aren’t cramming everything in at the last minute. Over preparation for an exam trumps under preparation every time.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com

© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
www.organizeanything.com

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tight and Bright: How Decluttering Your Language

Many people dread putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) to write letters, memos and reports. They don’t know what to say and they don’t know how to say it. They end up cluttering their composition with fancy phrases and stilted language, and their message gets lost in the muddle. Here are some tips to avoid that trap:

1. Know your audience. Are you writing to invite your cousins to a family reunion? Then you can be informal and conversational. Or are you writing an annual report that will be scrutinized by the executives at head office? Your tone will be formal, but not flowery. Simple words are always appropriate.

2. Pare it down. Write “now” instead of “at this point in time,” for example, or “money” instead of “monetary units.”

3. Use the active voice. Write “I made a list of writing tips,” not “I have been occupied in the writing of a list of composition tips.”

4. Use the right tools for the job. Keep a dictionary and style book handy. Look for templates and writing samples online. Use a word-processing program that fixes spelling mistakes and alerts you to grammatical errors.

5. Don’t use slang: It will not be understood by many of your readers, and it won’t stand the test of time.

6. Ask a friend or colleague to edit and proofread your work. A fresh set of eyes can often spot spelling mistakes and missing words. If they don’t understand a phrase, you can be sure most of your other readers won’t understand it, either.

7. Read it aloud: If you stumble over a passage, so will your readers.

8. Keep a list of common writing problems. And refer to it often.

By applying these simple rules you can clean up your text and your message will be bright and clear. Once you know what to say and how to say it, writing those letters, memos and reports will no longer seem like such a daunting task.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com

© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
www.organizeanything.com

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Keeping Things on Track: Organize for Success

Keeping Things on Track: Organize for Success

Back to school! We all start the year with the intention to be organized and on top of schoolwork, bills, work, and obligations. It doesn’t take long for the best intentions to turn into the worst habits. Let these organizing tips help you start the year off right and keep things on track all year.

The Two-Minute Rule. If it takes less than two minutes to do, do it now. Your friends can wait two minutes for you to finish something. This will prevent you from having to sit for hours sorting through papers and will ensure you have a clean workspace so you don’t end up doing your homework on your bed (where falling asleep is a big possibility!). Keeping on top of your piles of papers will help prevent forgotten assignments, lost phone messages, misplaced email addresses and damaged forms and applications.

Don’t Carry Around a Bottomless Pit. Don’t let your schoolbag become a bottomless pit of papers and garbage. Make a habit of cleaning out your back pack every night when you take your textbooks and notebooks out. Stray papers shoved into your bag on your way out of class, at extracurricular events, and picked up around school (promotional flyers, brochures, newspapers) have a way of getting crumpled up at the bottom of your bag and forgotten. Put them in their proper place! If you don’t need the information or don’t intend to go to the event –throw out the flyer. Put graded assignments in a designated binder or folder for that class. If you need to dispute your course grade later you want to have all of your graded materials. You may also want to study from your past tests.

Inboxes Aren’t Just for Email. Desktop inboxes aren’t just for corporate executives. Having an inbox for things you need to complete and an outbox for things that need to be dropped off (mail, assignments, forms, money owed) can be a great way to stay on top of what needs to be done. As long as you don’t allow things to pile up and get forgotten at the bottom of your inbox, it can keep you moving through things.

File This Under ‘Awesome’. An accordion file is a portable and affordable alternative to a filing cabinet. Make sections for bills, school, jobs, housing, health, and extracurricular activities. Keep all your information in the accordion file so you only have to look in one place when you need something. This will help keep your bulletin board clear of clutter so you have more room for photos, mementos, and current event information. It’s also easy to move.

Don’t Let a Red Sock Ruin Your Day. Try using a sectioned hamper or two separate hampers so that you can sort lights from darks as soon as they are dirty. This will save you time when you are ready to do a load of wash (and prevent a red sock from turning your whites pink!). Having two different colored hampers will help you remember which is which. Try keeping laundry soap, fabric softener, quarters, and other laundry necessities in a basket so that you can easily carry everything you need without losing anything on your way to the laundry room.

Following these tips will save you time and give you a great start to staying organized this school year. After all, there are more important things to be doing than tidying up!

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Back-to-the-Basics with Back-to-School Organization

Although most of us are enjoying a relaxing summer break, the new school year is just around the corner. August is the time to get ready for back to school by preparing ourselves with the proper supplies and organizational techniques. Follow these suggestions to create a less stressful year and to avoid that last minute scurry before the first day of school. Even if you don’t have children or aren’t attending school yourself, we can all benefit by using this time to readjust our schedules and routines.

1) Use Calendars - Prepare your calendar for the upcoming school year. Family members should have easy access to one central calendar at home. Keep one in your kitchen or den so everyone in your family can see what is on the agenda for the weeks ahead. Record important dates such as school closings, vacations, appointments or meetings. This will allow everyone to judge time accordingly for car scheduling and pick ups. Designate each family member a coloured marker to write activities to clearly see who has what coming up. In a backpack, keep a daily planner and carry it at all times. Jot down appointments or project deadlines right away before you forget. Don’t rely on memory – write it all down.

2) Only Buy What You Will Use - Organizing and prioritizing means making space in your room, home or office to store new school work and supplies. Don’t go overboard buying new supplies thinking this will help you be more organized. Rather, look at the basic items you use and only buy those. Make a list of the items you need and only purchase those items when shopping. By gathering your pre-existing supplies, you can judge more effectively what extra supplies you will need, and what has worked best for you in the past.

3) Get Rid of the Old to Make Room for the New - Get rid of old books and papers that you no longer use. When you do come across important papers, have a specific place to store them. A filing cabinet would be a great investment, and it keeps stacks of papers out of sight. Outdated magazines should be donated or recycled. If there are articles you like or don’t have time to read, tear them out and keep them in a binder or file them by subject. This way you have all the articles that you enjoy together and can take it along with you while waiting for appointments or in between classes.

4) Keep All School Supplies in One Area - Designate one spot in your home for all your school supplies. Spend 15 minutes each night tidying up this area. This will save time in the morning and avoid the panic of looking for misplaced items. Always have your backpack ready and your homework finished the night before. Keep lunches prepared in the fridge and ready to grab.

5) Donate Old Clothes - Everyone wants to have a few new items of clothing for the first day of school. Before you go shopping, look at the clothes you already own to see how they will work for the fall season. Go through your closet and get rid of outdated clothes and those that don’t fit. If you haven’t worn items in months or years, chances are you do not need them. Getting rid of these articles of clothing will make way for your new fall wardrobe.

6) Do it Now - Start shopping early for back-to-school clothes and supplies. Don’t wait until the weekend before school starts. The stores will be crowded which may cause unnecessary stress. Make shopping a leisurely and enjoyable experience with your children or friends.

Back-to-school can mean a fresh start for your organizing routine. Prepare now to ensure you start the new school year on the right track.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com

© 2006 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553
www.organizeanything.com
Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Smooth Transition from Summer to School

Many children, especially in the lower grades, find it hard to make the switch from the lazy days of summer (going to the beach, playing soccer, visiting amusement parks) to the school year (early mornings, routines, homework). Come to think of it, it’s not easy for parents, either. But there are ways to smooth the transition:

1. Read, read, read: Make reading an integral part of your summer. Libraries often have incentive programs for the summer months; take advantage of them. Read to your child, have them read to you, and read together. Read menus, books, comics, read everything and anything.
2. Buy supplies: If you have your child’s class list of supplies, keep an eye out for bargains and stock up. Some schools get parents to pay a flat rate and the teachers buy the supplies in bulk and to their own specifications. It’s a great time-saver for parents, and the teachers know each child will have the exact supplies he or she needs.
3. Take inventory: Go through your child’s closet and donate clothes that no longer fit. Throw out any that are beyond repair. Make a list of what items are needed (indoor sneakers, outdoor sneakers, backpack, etc.) and go shopping. Don’t forget second-hand stores.
4. Call the school: A day or two before school starts, call the school and find out what class your child is in and if there’s anything you or your child needs to know before Day 1.
5. Know the route: How is your child getting to school: walking, by bus, by car, from the sitter’s? Is there a change from last year? Try out the route with your child to see how long it takes. A route that takes you five minutes to walk, for instance, could take a child up to 10 minutes.
6. Ease back into routine: A few weeks before the first day, start regulating bedtimes and rising times to be closer to the school-year routine. How long does it take everyone to get ready in the morning?
7. Build excitement: Most children are excited about the return to school, at least for a week or two after it starts. Even if you’re dreading the return to hectic mornings and evenings supervising homework, control your negativity, which can be contagious. Plan some fun outings during the first few weekends, and sign your child up for some favorite extra-curricular activities.
8. Visit the school: A nice tradition is going with your child on the first day back, not just for Grade Primary. It will ease some jitters and make your child feel valued.
Helping your child transition from summer mode to school mode will make them feel prepared to take on the school year and give them a smooth start. A smooth start can give a child the confidence boost he needs to do well all year.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Where’s your launch pad?

Do you have a launch pad? You may not be Cape Canaveral but your home and office should not be without one.

Office

How many items are lying around your office that belong elsewhere and often take weeks and months to get back where they belong? There is a coffee cup that needs to go to the staff kitchen. A stack of photos from your vacation you brought in to show your colleagues. A gift you were given that you plan to take home. All these items create clutter in your office.

Find a shelf in your office or an area near the door that you can use for your launch pad. Move all those items that need to be returned to others or those items you want to remember to take home. It will lessen the clutter in your office and keep you from forgetting things you planned to bring home or return. Remember to take a peak at the launch pad when leaving the office to see what can be taken with you.

Home

In your home you can create several launch pads. Perhaps you already have your own launch pad and don’t realize it. Often the bottom steps of your staircase are already serving this purpose. Place items that need to go upstairs in the corner of the step so you take them up every time you go. Make sure it is not a hazard for those coming down the stairs.

You can also create a launch pad for yourself and your family near the main entrance. Place a small table or shelving unit near the entrance to collect items that need to be returned like library books or videos or errands that need to be run. Don’t forget to include things that are going to be picked up.

Your launch pad will help trigger your memory to things that need to go out of your home and office. It will cut down the clutter and help you to save some steps and manage tasks more efficiently. Unlike NASA’s, your launch pad won’t take you to space, but it will help you make better use of your space.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Taking off! Six Tips for Travelling

Sometimes the most stressful part of travelling is everything leading up to the trip – and let’s face it, it can take the fun out of the trip before it even starts. Use these tips to reduce the stress before you leave, while you are travelling and when you return!
1. Check the weather forecast at your destination – even if travelling to a warm country – for ideas on what to pack. Build your travel wardrobe around one basic color (black, navy or brown) to expand wardrobe options and limit luggage. If you plan on driving and it calls for snow, try to leave room in your schedule so that you can take off earlier to avoid the storm. If travelling through snow is necessary, pack an emergency kit, a shovel and some gravel in case you get stuck.
2. Use travel sized toiletry items to save space. Fill them only three-quarters full to save on extra weight charges if travelling by air. Place in zipper freezer bags to avoid leakage. If you have the time, purchase these items once you arrive at your destination. If your suitcase is full and you want to squeeze a few more items in, drop the bag on the floor a few times to make everything settle and create more space.
3. Use plastic dry cleaner bags or tissue around clothing to reduce wrinkles. Another method is to place two items of clothing together flat and fold them around each other. Try not to fold clothing any more than it needs to be to fit in the suitcase. Some may even iron everything before placing it in the suitcase. If it goes in crisp and clean, odds are more in its favour of coming out the same.
4. Pack snacks and bottled water for yourself and the kids. Fill a cooler if you’re on the road. This eliminates unnecessary stopping and can be much cheaper. Eating in the car can be hard for kids to manage, so use a shoe box as a tray to hold a sandwich, a drink or fries and keep from spilling.
5. Pack an extra bag for items you buy or receive on your trip. This especially applies during the holidays. If time permits, wait to wrap presents you will be giving until after you arrive at your destination. This saves on space and you don’t have to worry about damaging your pretty wrapping paper.
6. Take care of home before you leave. You will be returning at some point, so tidy your house before you leave. The thought of returning to a messy house can put a damper on your vacation. Try not to let too many people know you are going away and set several lamps on timers to switch on/off at various times so it appears as if you are home. Have a neighbour pick up your mail – or stop service – and take out the garbage bin on garbage day.

You can’t do everything, so if everything is not perfect before you leave, try not to let it bother you. Once you have left your house there is nothing you can do about it, so wait and take care of it when you get back - you might as well enjoy your trip!

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553
www.organizeanything.com
Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Taking off! Six Tips for Travelling

Sometimes the most stressful part of travelling is everything leading up to the trip – and let’s face it, it can take the fun out of the trip before it even starts. Use these tips to reduce the stress before you leave, while you are travelling and when you return!

1. Check the weather forecast at your destination – even if travelling to a warm country – for ideas on what to pack. Build your travel wardrobe around one basic color (black, navy or brown) to expand wardrobe options and limit luggage. If you plan on driving and it calls for snow, try to leave room in your schedule so that you can take off earlier to avoid the storm. If travelling through snow is necessary, pack an emergency kit, a shovel and some gravel in case you get stuck.
2. Use travel sized toiletry items to save space. Fill them only three-quarters full to save on extra weight charges if travelling by air. Place in zipper freezer bags to avoid leakage. If you have the time, purchase these items once you arrive at your destination. If your suitcase is full and you want to squeeze a few more items in, drop the bag on the floor a few times to make everything settle and create more space.
3. Use plastic dry cleaner bags or tissue around clothing to reduce wrinkles. Another method is to place two items of clothing together flat and fold them around each other. Try not to fold clothing any more than it needs to be to fit in the suitcase. Some may even iron everything before placing it in the suitcase. If it goes in crisp and clean, odds are more in its favour of coming out the same.
4. Pack snacks and bottled water for yourself and the kids. Fill a cooler if you’re on the road. This eliminates unnecessary stopping and can be much cheaper. Eating in the car can be hard for kids to manage, so use a shoe box as a tray to hold a sandwich, a drink or fries and keep from spilling.
5. Pack an extra bag for items you buy or receive on your trip. This especially applies during the holidays. If time permits, wait to wrap presents you will be giving until after you arrive at your destination. This saves on space and you don’t have to worry about damaging your pretty wrapping paper.
6. Take care of home before you leave. You will be returning at some point, so tidy your house before you leave. The thought of returning to a messy house can put a damper on your vacation. Try not to let too many people know you are going away and set several lamps on timers to switch on/off at various times so it appears as if you are home. Have a neighbour pick up your mail – or stop service – and take out the garbage bin on garbage day.

You can’t do everything, so if everything is not perfect before you leave, try not to let it bother you. Once you have left your house there is nothing you can do about it, so wait and take care of it when you get back - you might as well enjoy your trip!

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553
www.organizeanything.com

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Are you getting an “F” in Email?

Email has become an integral tool for business and personal communication. Quicker than a letter; more concrete than a phone call; clearer than a fax and more accessible than an in-person conversation. The problem with email is, the majority of individuals do not use it properly: personal and business email is mixed together; important messages are buried under SPAM and newer messages; files are lost or forgotten. Are you making the grade in email? Consider the following areas and tips to become an A+ email user. Forwards- sending non-essential emails to people you rarely speak to. If you haven’t spoken to someone in 6 months, forwarding them a joke email does not count as keeping in touch. Only send emails that are important, useful and relevant to people you know and speak to regularly. Nothing says “I Love You” like being one of fifty recipients.

File- did you remember to attach it before you sent it? Avoid aggravating the person waiting for the file and the secondary “oops” email. Attach the file before you begin writing the email, so you can avoid the sign off urge to click send before you attach your file.

Folder- do you sort your mail? Or does it sit in the inbox? The best way to deal with large amounts of email is to sort it into subfolders. Try setting filters so newsletters go directly to one of these folders. Create folders for specific clients, associations, projects, for items to read later, or things to follow up on. It will save you time looking through your recycle bin or through pages of emails in your inbox. You will be less likely to forget to do something urgent and you won’t get bogged down by “read later”, non-urgent types of email.

Flub- Send it to the wrong person, reply-all or accidentally send an email to everyone on a mailing list. Nothing makes you blush like sending a private email to an entire list serve. Always double check the recipient and take care when replying to mass emails.

Forget- Is there an important email sitting at the bottom of your inbox or in your draft folder? Check your folders regularly to avoid missing deadlines, RSVP dates, and special opportunities. Don’t rely on your memory. Use the flag option in outlook.

Filter- Are important emails ending up in your junk mail folder? Check it regularly. Add email addresses to your safe senders list when they accidentally get filtered to your junk mail. Add certain domains, such as your company’s, to your list of safe senders. That way all addresses from that domain will always be marked as safe.

Friends, Family, Fools- do you keep your business contacts separate from personal ones? Use a separate email address or inbox for personal and business mail. Free web-based email addresses such as Hotmail look unprofessional for business purposes and sending personal email from a corporate account will lead to dealing with personal matters on the clock. Try having a spare email address you use when you must give an email when signing up for something. Check it infrequently to clear it out and read anything of value.

Fixed position- Do you change email addresses so often no one can keep up? Do you have so many similar address that people aren’t sure which ones they should use? Getting the same email sent to each of your email addresses? Make everyone’s communication much easier by clarifying and sticking with one business and one personal email account. When someone sends something to the wrong one, let them know to reach you at the other.

Freedom- Do you check your Blackberry every 5 minutes, even when driving, eating supper, or in a meeting? Are you chained to your email, rushing to open your inbox every time a new email comes in? Email is meant to liberate you, not chain you down. Turn off alerts; allow unhampered time with family and friends. Our brains can only focus on one thing at a time, when we add additional things to think about or do, our attention gets split. Remember, just because you get an email at 11 pm, doesn’t mean you need to respond at that time.

Follow-up- Do you get back to people in a timely manner, or do they need to email you 2-3 times, call you, and show up on your door step? Do individuals need to email you more than once about the same issue? Be sure to get back to people in a timely manner or they will believe you did not receive the email or find more time consuming ways to get what they need from you. Create an effective system for timely follow up.

Move yourself to the top of the class with business colleagues, friends and family by implementing these improved email strategies.

About the Author:
Colette Robicheau is a consultant, coach, and public speaker with Organize Anything offering corporate, residential, and personal organizing services. Contact Colette at info@organizeanything.com or visit www.organizeanything.com.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Planning the Perfect Dinner Party

Hosting a dinner party takes preparation and organization. With everyone’s busy schedules, families and friends don’t often get the chance to sit down and enjoy a special meal together. Here are some suggestions to help make your next gathering easy and memorable.

1) Start by making pre and post checklists of the supplies you will need. As you plan your party, follow your timetable, go over lists and check off each task as it is completed. Make certain to include critical info like date, time, place and reason for the occasion. Ask guests to RSVP by a certain date so you can appropriately prepare.

2) Figure out how big or small a get-together you would like to have so you can plan your budget. Consider how many you can comfortably seat at your table or how you can extend an existing table to accommodate more. Other tables in your home or even an inexpensive fold out rental table can work well when clothed and set. Placing name cards at the dinner table is a nice way to encourage conversation and for people to get to know each other.

3) Consider your china, dishes, flatware and cooking pots you will use. Use your special occasion pieces - this is a party after all. Also consider how well you can work in the size of your kitchen. If you have never done this before start small with some simple dishes and make additions after you have some experience.


4) If you plan on having a party on a specific holiday, be prepared for a fewer number of RSVP’s. People will be less likely to have other plans if the party is scheduled on a date before or after the holiday.

5) Time your invitation for people to come ½ an hour to an hour before you plan to serve dinner. If possible let them know - cocktails at 7:00, dinner at 8:00. The more formal the occasion, the more lead time required. Everything works for invitations - from a phone call, e-mail or handwritten invitation.

6) Ask friends and family members for help as well. Assign tasks or food items for guests to bring to help ease your load. If you are going to serve wine choose after the menu is in place and enlist some help from local wine retailers. Not only can they find a pairing for food but they can also provide amounts required based on your numbers and the size of the wine bottle.

7) An organized house is more attractive and welcoming to your guests. Take the time to tidy up and put your belongings in their proper place. You will feel more comfortable knowing that your guests are seeing your home at its best.

Plan ahead so you have as little to do on the actual day of your party as possible. Take time for yourself before guests begin arriving. Being a relaxed and stress free party host is the best thing to serve your guests

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Closet Questions – Should it Stay or Go?

Stumped as to what to keep and what to get rid of? Try asking yourself these questions to help you define what should be in your closet:

1. Do I love it and feel good when I wear it? We want to feel good and empowered when we leave the house in the morning for work or head out for our leisure activities. We should be comfortable and confident.
2. Does it flatter my figure or did I just buy it because it was on sale, it fit me, I was depressed, I was celebrating or it’s the latest trend? We have to know our bodies and what really looks good on us. Forcing a trend on an unsuitable figure is just not attractive.
3. Am I really going to get it altered or repaired? Many times we think we will get around to making the alteration and it just doesn’t happen. If we so decide to take it to a professional there is still the risk that some alterations just won’t work. Simple things like hemming or buttons will, but when we’re talking full makeovers there is a bit of a gamble of paying the money for something that still may not look right and is wearable in the end.
4. Is it a classic piece of clothing that I can wear again and again or is it actually just memorabilia with sentimental attachment? Often we hang on to our expensive classic pieces long afterward everyone has stopped wearing them. We also have the tendency to keep things related to special occasions. Our closets are prime real estate for the clothing we wear everyday. Memorabilia should be stored elsewhere or in a keepsake box.
5. When was the last time I wore it? Am I currently wearing it and when will I wear it in the future? If it has been hanging around and the only thing that has touched it is a layer of dust let it go.
6. How many other articles of clothing does it go with? One article of clothing should be purchased knowing it is flexible within your wardrobe and can go with several things.
7. Can I wear it through many seasons? Buy items you can wear for the majority of the year.
8. Does it reflect who I am now and who I would like to be? We grow both professionally and personally throughout our lives. Make sure you are not stuck in the past and that your wardrobe has grown with you.
9. How may duplicates do I have in my closet? Make an inventory of how many pairs of jeans, black pants, white t-shirts or sweatshirts you have that you no longer wear? When there are too many of one item, you will only wear your favorites anyway. Do yourself a favor and just get rid of extras to make more space for the ones you do enjoy and wear frequently.

Have some fun and invite friends and family over to have first pick of clothes that you don’t want anymore. They can also give you an honest answer as to whether something should stay or go.

By asking yourself these questions you will have an easier time navigating your closet, finding what you want to wear and getting to where you are going faster and more self assured.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sticky Do's and Don'ts

We sure have a love affair with adhesive notes. Expanding from the original yellow square note pad, they now come in many colors, sizes, shapes, and specialty varieties (super sticky, page tags, divider tags.) Sticky notes can be a great tool to trigger your brain or to keep frequently used but hard to remember info at hand. However, even the biggest fans of sticky notes are aware of some of the drawbacks of the handy message pads. Follow these Do’s and Don’ts to keep you out of a sticky situation.

Sticky Do’s
Do use sticky notes for:
• Marking catalogue and magazine pages
• Reminding your self of special tasks (on bathroom mirror, front door, fridge door, phone, briefcase, lunch box)
• Have sticky notes prepared to leave on your office door (such as “Back in 10 minutes, At lunch, Working at home, In a meeting - Do not disturb”). Store these on the back of your door, bulletin board, or inside a cabinet door
• Flow charts and scheduling
• To avoid writing on original documents
• Brain-storming sessions
• Quick lists (errands, groceries) to place on your “To do” list
• Daily affirmations. Put a positive message on mirror
• Entering the fax number on a document you are faxing
• Writing positive notes to employees and family members


Sticky Don’ts
Don’t use sticky notes for:
• To remind yourself of day-to-day activities or projects. Use a prioritized “To do” list instead
• When there is more than one task to complete
• A record of phone messages. Use a spiral notebook instead
• A method of retaining information on permanent documents. They can get knocked off and will dry out after awhile
• Labelling computer disks and CDs
• External or formal correspondence

Keep it together. While sticky notes are OK for quick temporary notes that you discard fairly soon after using them, they're not effective for notes you need to retain. If your environment is overrun with sticky notes, write your notes in a single spiral notebook instead. You'll still have to transfer these notes to your planner, PDA, address book, etc., but at least all of your notes will be in one single place where you can find them

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dreaming of a Good Night’s Sleep – 8 Tips to Create a Restful Sleep

To maximize productivity for the following day, it is important to start off on the right track. Preparing yourself for your day’s events begins with a good night’s sleep. If you are tired of tossing and turning, follow these 8 tips to enjoy an uninterrupted night of shut eye.

1) Organizing yourself the night before can help to alleviate stress allowing you to benefit from a more restful sleep. Gather all materials that you will need for the next day. Prepare your lunch and breakfast to save time in your morning routine, finish your assignments the night before and have your bag packed and ready to go. When you are prepared, your mind can rest and stop racing about what needs to get done in the morning. Creating a routine of things you do before bed, as well as, what time you go to sleep and wake up at will help your body gear towards a healthy sleeping pattern.

2) Wash your bedding and sleepwear regularly. Use all natural products when doing your laundry. A good mattress and pillow can help with back and neck problems and other health issues. Poor sleeping patterns can have a negative effect on the immune system, therefore increasing injuries and illness. Just as you must change your running sneakers to guarantee proper support, you must change your mattress every eight to 10 years. Spend a little extra to buy a top quality mattress. After all, over a third of your time is spent in bed, so it should be comfortable and inviting.

3) Try not to exercise right before you go to bed. Instead, wake up half an hour earlier and begin your exercise routine as soon as you get out of bed in the morning. Exercise no later than early afternoon to give your body time to cool down fully. Another reason to exercise for at least 30 minutes per day is because people who exercise have an easier time falling asleep than non-exercisers do.

4) It is important to try to cut back on all caffeine products, but especially be mindful of your consumption before bedtime. Keep track of how much chocolate, tea, carbonated beverages, alcohol and coffee you drink. Instead, have a glass of water or juice. These healthier alternatives will not speed up your heart rate and keep you awake as caffeine products can. Avoid spicy foods and try not to eat at least three hours before you hit the sheets. If you are hungry, have a glass of milk. The serotonin will calm brain chemicals. The higher the level of serotonin, the more relaxed you will be and able to fall asleep easier.

5) Give yourself enough time to get a pleasant and relaxing sleep. Your body and brain need to replenish. We often underestimate how much sleep our bodies really need. We think we can function on as little sleep as possible, but our bodies need an average of eight hours per night. Doctors recommend falling asleep before 11pm. Go to bed earlier than you normally would. This can also help you to avoid constantly checking the clock and worrying about getting up. Also, keep the same sleep routine even on the weekends. Have a 20 minute nap later in the day if you are tired. Don’t overexert yourself and think you can catch up on your sleep on Sunday morning.

6) It takes some time to gear down from a mentally and physically exhausting day. Try to watch something light hearted on television before you go to bed, listen to soft music or read a calming book. Save repetitive and soothing chores for the end of the day, such as ironing or folding laundry. Pay bills and do heavy cleaning at least 2 hours before bed. Our minds continue to think about whatever we were doing before we fell asleep, so it is a good idea to create a restful mood for your mind and body. Turn off phones to avoid late-night disturbances and stop using your computer several hours before bedtime. Keep a notebook by your bed and record worries and task for the next day. This will help you clear your mind. After 20 minutes of unsuccessfully trying to fall asleep, get up and go into another room. The change of scenery will help you to get in the mood for sleep when you return to your bed.

7) Create a conducive and healthy sleep environment. Too much light may be keeping you awake. Dim the lights an hour before bedtime to prepare your mind. Turn your alarm clock away from you it has a backlight or digital display. Make sure your blinds block enough sunlight or wear an eye mask and earplugs. Providing full darkness for your eyes will aid you in falling asleep faster. Keep your bedroom at a cool temperature. You need lots of clean air space and a toxin-free room. Remove any candles or scented products that may be interfering with your sleep, and throw away piles of papers or old magazines in your room. Declutter any extra dust collectors that promote unhealthy air quality. Wash bedding and drapes in hot water to kill dust mites. Remember to replace your pillow every two years or at least wash it hot water periodically. Dust covers can be purchase to trap dust mites away in your mattress. To completely seal it off use duct tape over the zipper closure. Have you carpets cleaned periodically.

8) Try deep breathing while counting sheep. Try counting your breaths. Breathe deeply in and out through your nose.

The effects of sleep deprivation on our everyday performance can keep us from living up to our potential. Even a modest half hour lost per night can affect the way the body functions during the day. By following these suggestions, you will see an improvement in your sleep patterns and wake up feeling refreshed.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Mudroom Madness

Is your mudroom, hallway, foyer or entry way making you mad?

Do you constantly trip over everything on the floor?

Is there no space to put anything?

Or has your clutter been like this so long that you just pass by and not really see what your guests see?

You may just spend minutes coming or going but this brief time can definitely set the tone for the start or end of your working day.

Nothing says welcome like entering into a space where you feel comfortable and can easily store your coat, shoes and outerwear items. Think about your home’s entry and incorporate these ideas to help keep it in top shape and keep you sane:

1. Give each family member a space: limit the amount each person can keep there (number of shoes, bags, etc.). Locker-like cubbies, milk crates or laundry baskets are great and can work well depending on the space. Allow only items that are used frequently and for that season in this area. Have adjustable shelves and hooks to grow with your child. Think about what is reachable for your child when deciding where to hang hooks and put baskets. Square cubbies are great for kids’ extra-curricular supplies and equipment; even shallow cubbies are helpful for stashing things away.


2. Have a place to sit to put on shoes. A bench with storage under the seat is a great multi-purpose item. A chest or toy box can make a great bench/storage option, too. Or tuck bins under a bench or chairs. This is a great place to keep sports equipment. Be diligent about keeping this seat clutter-free so you will always have a spot to quickly sit to lace up your shoes.

3.Provide enough hooks. Make sure that there is at least one hook per family member (an easy alternative to nagging kids to hang up coats). Strong hooks are also great to get book bags off the floor. Use big hooks for heavy coats and small ones for umbrellas and hats. Don’t forget the family dog! Have a hook for his leash. Hooks can also be placed on the back of doors. Hooks are a great way to tap into unused storage space- the walls and doors. Make sure the kids’ hooks are at their level and the adults can use the upper space.

4. Create a specific area for your pets. In one spot store leashes, waste bags, outside toys, treats, a cloth to wipe paws and winter paw protector or booties. Think about opting for bag holders that attach to the leash, collapsible water bowls and treat or ball bags that clip on your belt to save your pockets from an overflow of plastic bags and ‘cookie’ crumbs. Have reflective bands for you and your dog for nighttime outings—especially important in fall and winter as the days become shorter. You may also wish to consider a place to stash indoor toys on your way out.

5.Think up, way up. Build a custom cabinet up to the ceiling to maximize storage of out of season items higher up. If you are working with the closet you have, use labeled bins and boxes for seldom used or out of season items and store higher up. Consider adding an extra shelf above the existing ones. Could you double rod the closet – adults coats on the top – children’s below. If you do not have a front closet, you must be particularly selective about what you keep in your entrance. Think seasonal – what do I really need right now? Keep things for this time of year and store the rest elsewhere in your house.

6. Watch out for wet items. Allow each family member to have only one pair of shoes out at a time on a boot rack. Once a pair is dry it should be put away. Wet mittens and hats can be hung by clothes pins on a line that runs vertically or horizontally--thread line through pins’ spring, spacing them along the line, or use a pretty piece of 1 inch ribbon that they will easily clip to. Hang this mini clothesline close to a heat vent or heater. Again, once dry, these items should be stashed away.

7. Make a message centre. A bulletin board nearby, will help keep your family on schedule. Pin forms, invitations, practice schedules, and a calendar. This will help you remember to grab these items on the way out.

8. Check yourself out – add a mirror. Not only does it help make the space appear larger, it is convenient for you to give yourself a once-over before rushing out the door. It will help you catch turned up collars, food in teeth and hat-head. Get a mirror that has a small ledge for lipstick and a comb.

9. Give some careful thought to every item in the mudroom. Use waterproof paint and tile floors to deal with the moisture that will be coming in. Allow lots of natural light in and install ceiling light for nighttime entrances. If there is something there that doesn’t serve a purpose, remove it. Space is at a premium in the mudroom, so make sure you have a rationale for all your choices.

It may be a little space, but a little time and thought can rid you of the aggravation and madness of your mudroom.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Get Ready for the Spring Thaw – Regain your Refrigerator


Here’s a different sort of spring thaw and one you can do yourself. Get prepared to clean out your fridge and freezer. This process is a hot idea with refrigerator rules that will save you money and time.

1. Start now by making a commitment to buy fewer grocery items and eat as much as possible of what is already in your fridge and freezer. Schedule a date as the day you will clean your refrigerator and try not to purchase too much before then. Look at your calendar and find a day and time that you have nothing else planned, preferably the day before garbage pick-up day. Make sure you allow enough time on the day you have picked, to complete your project.

2. Be prepared. Have plenty of extra large, heavy-duty trash bags on hand and have your recycling and composting containers nearby.

3. Let things go. When you start to clean out the refrigerator you may be left with food that is too old to eat or that you haven’t chosen to eat. Maybe it’s just time to let it go. If your poultry is petrified, your sauces are science projects, or if you can’t remember when you bought it—toss it. Check the expiration dates. Pay attention to foods and condiments that weren’t eaten, and consider this when grocery shopping for these items in the future.

4. Take everything out for a good cleaning and use a cooler to store while you clean. It’s spring and you will need to get those coolers out anyway.

5. Get rid of the old ice in the ice trays and give the trays a good washing.

6. Put like things together. Create sections for different types of foods — beverages, veggies, fruit, cheese and deli meats, dairy, other meats.

7. Think proper storage. Meat and poultry should be stored in the center back where it stays the coolest. Condiments are fine in the door where temperature fluctuates. Vegetables are best in the crisper with higher levels of humidity. Use clear containers for leftovers, or repackaged items, and label with the date so you know what it is and when it was put there. Square containers are better than round, as they waste less space.

8. Know what you actually eat and when. We may not notice it but we often eat seasonally. So, just like switching over our closet, we need to change over our refrigerator contents as well. Our spring and summer eating styles tends to change to more fresh produce and barbecue items and there may also be some adjustments when the kids get out of school.

9. Take out the trash. Immediately put that trash bag outside for the collection.

This spring thaw will give you a clean refrigerator with foods that can be easily found, last longer through proper storage techniques, and create more room for easy access.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Rules of Disengagement: Ending Conversations Gracefully and Tactfully

Do you ever have trouble ending a telephone conversation?
Do you need to speak to someone but worry because it always turns into a long drawn out conversation on topics you would rather not speak about?
Do people come in your office and you can't get them to leave?
Do your meetings run too long and get off track?

Some conversations don't just end naturally they need to be closed or disengaged. The following are ways to take back control of your time and disengage from those conversations that are not going where you would like them to go.
Politely disengage:

1. When you are the person making a call, be prepared in advance.
Have speaking points. Know exactly what you want to get out of the call. This will keep you on track. Start the telephone conversation with, "I only have a couple of minutes but I need to ask you..." or "The reason for my call is." When ending the call thank the person you called for providing the information you needed.
2. If colleagues enter your office and start chatting when you don't have the time or you want to end the conversation simply stand and this will signal an end to the conversation. Sometimes you will need to walk the person closer the door and also offer language that will close the conversation.
"Thanks for dropping by" or
"We should schedule a time to get together to speak about this in greater detail."
3. Reference the next time you will see the person. That way it won't feel like you are brushing them off.
4. If you are at a reception and the conversation is going longer than you would like, shake hands and tell the person you are speaking to that it was nice to meet them or to see them again. You can also say something like "I would really like to continue this conversation another time - please give me a call so we can schedule it."
5. In a meeting have a clearly outlined agenda and share it with the group. The agenda should include times for each topic. When things are going long, you can refer to the agenda and say, "In order for us to keep with our agenda we will have to move on. If we need more time on this topic we can reschedule."
People often develop a fear that others will be hurt or insulted if they have to end a conversation, but if it is done properly, the majority of people won't think anything of it. They will respect the fact that you are a busy person and have other matters to attend to. Try using these approaches to disengagement:
Humour- as long as the person knows you are joking:
"Jim will hunt me down if I don't get this to him by noon."
"The office is a madhouse right now."
"I need to get back to my desk, Facebook is calling me."
"I'm trapped under a pile of paper and have to work my way out."

Polite wording - Etiquette has taught us these traditional conversation enders:
"I had better let you go."
"I'm going to let you go now."
"It will be great to see you at..."
Excuses - whether it is real or fictional, either way it is a valid ender:
"I have a meeting to get to."
"I have to make a phone call."
"I'm swamped with work."
"I'm in the middle of something and can't break my concentration."
Positive comments will make the person feel good ending the conversation:
"I'm really glad you spoke to me about this."
"That's an excellent point; I will keep this in mind."
"I appreciate your concern/effort."

Remember, that it is your time. Spend it doing things that are the most important to you. By following these tactics for disengaging gracefully you will respect your time and the people with whom you are speaking.

If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to others who would find it useful and sign up for our Organize Anything newsletter on our homepage at www.organizeanything.com.
© 2010 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577 Fax: (902) 455-0553
www.organizeanything.com

Permission to reuse or redistribute these materials is hereby granted provided they are reproduced or redistributed in their entirety with full attribution.