“Thred Up” for Dummies…clean out your closet and do a good turn. (win-win-win)

May 22, 2018 – Wouldn’t you like to combine having cute clothes in your closet (chosen for you by a personal stylist), saving time & money, while bettering the planet all at the same time?!?  Thankfully, there IS an option that hits all the high points.

I spent a good portion of my Mother’s Day organizing my WHOLE closet, and I loved it. (I’m an organizer, not weird!!!)  While it can be daunting and time-consuming, it can also be exhilarating when you’re paring down your collection to the items that you really love and feel great in. Also, it never fails to reunite you with a few items you’d lost track of over the past months (or years??) since you last did a deep dive into your closet.

Closets are such an integral part of our overall self; they get us prepared to tackle life EVERY SINGLE DAY. The opposite is also true: a wildly disorganized closet holds us back and adds stress to our already stressful lives.  I know you can relate!

So you’re ready to tackle it: you start taking things out and making decisions about what to keep and what to let go. You stop for a second while considering an item: a really cute dress you thought would work brilliantly but just turned out to be…meh.

You launch into the typical struggle we all have when deciding whether to keep it or let it go: but I paid MONEY for that/it’s a good brand/ I’ll probably wear it again…someday.

Hate to tell you: NO, you won’t. It will still be there waiting for you to clean out your closet again, and you will participate in the same conversation in your head!

What helps us let go of those things? Knowing they can go to a better place and be used, appreciated and respected by someone else!

Today’s current trends are: online shopping, eco-fashion, online personal styling (Stitch Fix), boho/retro dressing styles, saving money, and finding kinder avenues towards our Earth.  What’s NOT to love about those?  So guess what??

Thred Up is an online thrift store that lets you send in sellable clothes!  Unload those duds and get a few dollars.  Or, donate what you make to a worthy cause.  Win-win-win!

It’s so incredibly easy!  Go HERE request a bag. Then just bag up your items and drop it at the post office or leave it for your letter carrier.

I sent mine off yesterday.  But I am ordering another one today since I had more to send in than would fit into the bag.  Did I mention the bags are POSTAGE PAID???  Meaning: no charge to send in the clothes!!!  So every excuse you might come up with is gone.  So get your unwanted items GONE!  Let me know at Love Your Space Organizing on FaceBook!

Why I can’t drive past this and not create a blog post…

May 4, 2018 — Wow, it’s really May!  While we’ve been enjoying a cooler than normal Spring, people are still in that “get it out” mode that is brought on by Spring Cleaning energy.  It happens every year and we should capitalize on those urges that lead us to open up windows, change out heavier blankets for lighter ones, and fill boxes to cart off to donate.

With education though, we know now that there are items that we don’t have to toss in the landfill, like this copier!  I called the City of Austin Resource Recovery and asked about one of my favorite things: “large item trash pickup” which happens every 6 months.  It is FASCINATING!  It’s freecycling in it’s purest form:  put it out, and someone picks it up, no questions asked.  And then, whatever remains, gets picked up by a truck and carted off to the landfill.  Yes, from your curb directly to the landfill.

Electronics should NOT go in the landfill.  It’s so easy these days to donate electronics for recycling:   google “electronics recycling austin” (or follow my link) and you’ll be overwhelmed by the choices!  And that is precisely why we have trouble: it is too overwhelming.   This is why I am here for you.   My calling as an eco-organizer is to make it simpler and very do-able for you to “get stuff out” without not wrecking the environment in the process:)

ACTION ITEM:  Set up a bag, box or bin in which to toss your electronic cords, devices and the like and then take it to a proper electronics recycler.  I personally use Z TechGlobal Solutions these days, but if you’re walking into Best Buy, look at the bins they have to collect all sorts of things.  There are pick up services for large items like the copier above.  Yes, sometimes you have to pay a little, but hey, aren’t you glad there are companies out there dedicated to recycling ELECTRONICS?!  I sure am.

Cheers, y’all!

Why 3 hours in a garage can be the most fun and valuable time you’ll spend all week!

April 8, 2018 – Do you know the saying, the days are long but the years are short?  Lately, though, it seems that the days are short and the years are going by at warp speed!  Such is the truth surrounding the piles, boxes, and bags of random stuff that we drop in places during these days and weeks that zip by, and before know it, your kids are teenagers and you still have legos, coloring books, and the like collecting dust in your garage, occupying space you need for serious baseball and golf equipment!

You know that your messy garage/playroom/bedroom is costing you time and money and leading to frustration over feeling perpetually behind and ill-prepared.  So you say to yourself:  TODAY I will clean out the garage/playroom/bedroom!  You set out with every good intention of progress, you really do!  But then, you check an email that needs attention. You answer a phone call that takes close to 30 minutes…

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Gone now is that time you were “going to finally make progress”!!!

Recently I spent a gloriously productive 3 hours with a client in her garage that shaved 10 years off that space.  For starters, we donated a crib, threw out multiple dead bouncy balls, and boxed up many toys that will benefit a school carnival soon.  As well as finding things to donate or toss, we also found some important items that she needed to pass on to someone for an upcoming event; things that if she’d been actually looking for, she’d likely not have found!  Think of all that time and stress she saved!

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Why were we able to shave 10 years off this garage in 3 hours?  WE SCHEDULED THE SESSION.  She set aside the time to dedicate to the task.  We talked about the goal for the space, and we worked hard without getting distracted.  Yes, we drank water and took short breaks, but truthfully, we FOCUSED.  And wow.  Check it out.

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You deserve to have similar victories in your space.  Don’t you want to LOVE YOUR SPACE?  Call me.

Note:  all photos and anecdotal material used with permission from client.

 

Musings on my most recent experience of selling our old bed frame (instead of giving it away)

March 22, 2019 — To sell or not to sell? While donating something doesn’t actually give you that money-in-your-pocket benefit, my recent experience of selling a bed reiterated to me how selling something always costs more in time and mental energy than I really want to spend. I have become an avid and frequent freecycler (most of it done through my local Buy Nothing Project Facebook group); and second only to the joy of giving something to someone is the ease in which you can release the object. (and third is receiving something from someone else that you didn’t have to go buy!!)

Here’s how it went down:

Recently I decided our old bed was destined to leave the attic, and “good enough to sell” (I knew my husband would appreciate the effort). So I took time to wipe it down & shine it up (to make it look desirable), took pictures, did a little research as to how I should price it, then posted it on some social media selling sites. Then immediately came the multiple requests wanting to purchase it…most of them started with “will you take X dollars less?” (I don’t mind a good barter so I priced it higher knowing I would be willing to take less)

But the exhaustion came from fielding all the different requests and finally getting one person commit to buying it and holding off the ocean of continued requests until I had confidence that I had a solid buyer. Then the arranging to pick it up and get paid took another round of energy and time I did not want to spend. I had to rearrange my schedule to be home. Then came the doubt as to whether I’d overcharged for the bed after I started to evaluate how dinged up it looked on every surface! Energy drained! No joy acquired.

Now let’s turn back the clock and say I instead decided to Freecycle this bed.

Here’s how it would go down:

Time to release that bed taking up space and being useful to no one but dust bunnies! I took a quick picture, posted it on my local Buy Nothing site, checked back for comments, then p.m.-ed someone my address. Last step was to put it out in front of my house. No need to try to spit shine or even worry the slightest little bit. Bed now will be loved and not camping out useless in my home.

Easy. Release. Joy. Done.

I know you can’t argue with the joys of some cash in the pocket, but consider that your time and energy are better served by giving things away and spreading the joy.

Peace out!

Don’t think about EVERYthing you have to do, just think about the NEXT thing you have to do…

707406fa-2917-4dd1-97ea-6cd1da224d35-9615-0000090760147d51_fileMarch 20, 2018–Wow, March is flying by!  This Friday I’m going out of town for 3 consecutive trips (Cincinnati, OH;  then Victoria, BC;  finally Fort Worth, TX)!!  And let’s say, that’s a stressful proposition as you can imagine.  My lists are daunting.  How am I managing?  I just “put one foot in front of the other” and do the next step of the next task.  That’s all I can do.  And you can too!  Prioritize and perform, no need to seek perfection.  Be proud of yourself!  Have a great week.

Tip of the day! Spring Break is coming SOON…

Are you going on a trip in March?  For some of us that is NEXT WEEK!!  Start your packing list NOW.  And get down the suitcases you will use.  As you do laundry this week. start tossing in the essentials and then you’ll get that packing bowl rolling.  What kind of list do you like?  (electronic or good old paper?)200565778-002

on being brave…

 

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Feb 27, 2018 – OH BEAR OH BEAR!!  🙂  Those of you that know me personally and/or on Facebook most likely know that last week was extremely hard in that we had to put our dog to sleep:  a decision that is NEVER easy, but ALWAYS kind.  Dealing with difficulties is something we all have to do daily, but we don’t have to do it alone, y’all!  My Facebook family and friends got me through the hardest parts and it’s only because I put it out there that I needed support.  And wow, did they rally around!

And a huge shout-out to my kids, who were strong and vulnerable throughout the whole thing.  I’m not trying to make you cry here, but they made me so proud as they stayed by Bear’s side to the end.  We didn’t make them, but we invited them to.  I know that as hard as it was, they will always know they did the right thing and feel proud of their bravery.

In case you didn’t know, you can call a vet to come to your home instead of having to take your animal to the clinic.  The next time it becomes necessary in our household, (and when you have pets, it’s inevitable) I will absolutely choose the in-home ceremony.  What a relief to know that when it’s time, you can be in your home with family if you choose.  I recommend Dr. Brady Bennett of Austin Pet Loss at Home.

Sorry if this seemed like a heavy post, but it’s not, really.  I felt loved and supported, and I want that for others, too:)

So…how “expired” is expired, really?

Feb. 18, 2018 – Hello, all!  One of the main objectives I have for this blog is to educate you about stuff that you just don’t have time to look up on your own time, but will benefit you in your daily life and help Mother Earth at the same time!  (Disclaimer!  I’m looking up the resources and passing them on to you, not doing the RESEARCH myself)

Medicines! How “expired” is expired?  I found an article that uses research done by our military program when they were faced with replacing thousands of dollars of medication every few years.  What they found from the study is 90% of more than 100 drugs, both prescription and over-the-counter, were perfectly good to use even 15 years after the expiration date.  That’s GOOD NEWS!  Excluding nitroglycerin, insulin, and liquid antibiotics, most medications are as long-lasting as the ones tested by the military.  Read the whole article here.  It’s short and interesting.  I’d likely still have lots of bottles of ibuprofen if I’d known this sooner…ah, well!

What about disposing of medicines?  I think we all grew up with our parents disposing of meds by flushing them down the toilet…until such time that common knowledge taught us that we were poisoning the water supply this way.  Hindsight’s 20/20… so now what do we do with them?  I found some guidance here about how to recycle/dispose of them.  Ideally, we’d like to take them to our local take-back centers and let them deal with them en masse.

If you’re lucky, you know someone who takes meds to developing countries on mission trips.  Another example of good deeds that give our cast-offs second life and purpose!

I hope you found something useful from this post, I SURE DID and I wrote it:)

When an obsession turns to inspiration!

Feb 10, 2018 –  Greetings, all!  I am constantly amazed at the power that ONE PERSON can have to change something for the better, just by doing something small.  What are some famous examples?The powerful movement of Pay it Forward is the first one that comes to mind.  With the internet and social media, we are seeing trends and deeds spread like wildfire, sometimes for the better, sometimes for worse!  (Crocs) 🙂

Now, I want to introduce you to someone known mostly as “The Styrofoam Lady”, but her actual name is Lynnette and she lives in a sweet neighborhood in NW Austin called Milwood.  I lived there for 16 years and raised all my babes there; it embodies so much of what I consider perfect in a neighborhood, but that’s probably another blog post!

If you ask around in Milwood about the Styrofoam lady, I bet you’ll get big smiles and reports of:  “YES!  I take mine to her, too!”    Recently I called Lynnette and asked for an interview because people need to know that she is someone who is truly making a difference by allowing others to BRING THEIR STYROFOAM TO HER HOUSE AND LEAVE IT ON HER PORCH!  She then takes regular trips to the City of Austin’s Resource Recovery drop off center.  Why does she do this?  And how?!

Obesssion!  It leads us in various directions, often to chocolate, but also to helping Mother Earth.  Lynette told me that once she started researching the statistics, about how long, long, long styrofoam takes to break down, she knew she needed to start repurposing and recycling her own styrofoam, which she then offered to her neighbors to take theirs, since the drop off site is fairly far south.  She first got the idea out to her neighbors using Nextdoor.com and word of mouth.  Also, she advertises at the neighborhood’s Fourth of July Picnic every year.

Here’s what her porch typically looks like!

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While this scene looks neat and tidy, Lynnette has learned through experience to set serious parameters to those of us that bring offerings to her porch!  She has received lots of soiled and wet items which stole her joy immediately as it would anyone’s.  She was not to be deterred though. After trial and error, she has come up with this system:

Egg cartons, ice chests, cups… Lynnette likes to repurpose!!!  Sometimes the larger pieces work well for kids’ science projects, or whatever creative outlet someone might need it for.  Lots of folks receive medicine shipment regularly and wind up with multiple ice chests which could work well for someone else.  Also, egg cartons get distributed among those neighbors with chickens!

Lynnette is after my own heart with this behavior and I bet yours has grown too after reading this post.  Maybe you’re thinking that you might collect styrofoam or corks or Box Tops or old towels in your neighborhood, too.  Tap into your own OBSESSIONS and see what difference you can make!  Need ideas?  Peruse our Give Where You Live tab.

In my recent post about Box Tops and Pop Tabs, I encouraged each of us to embrace that the little things matter.  We are all so VERY BUSY, but when you figure out a way to make it easier to spread the love, then it becomes just part of “what you do” and “who you are”!  I’d love to have you message me and tell me of more people doing these things near you, or what YOU are doing in your own way.

Peace out, y’all!

Let’s celebrate my 1 YEAR Biz-versary!

cropped-logo143945881.jpgFeb 2, 2018 — It’s mind-boggling for me to believe that I’ve already been in business as an in-home professional organizer for a whole year already.  Not only has it flown by at lightning speed, but it’s been the most amazing and rewarding work ever.  I feel privileged to have been invited into people’s homes to help them tackle areas that have been holding them back for years.  In hours, we rescue the area and bring back joy and TIME into my client’s life!  I think my favorite part is how my client will text me (repeatedly) telling me how happy they are and how much fun they are having in their newly organized spaces.  And I’m not ashamed to say that I’m GOOD at what I do.  Maybe it’s having 3 boys (plus a hubby!) for all these years now that has made me learn that chaos holds us back from getting ahead and truly enjoying life.  Life is a wild ride, with or without kids, and if you spend more time LOOKING for lost items and missing deadlines than participating in activities that make life worthwhile, then you need to STOP!  It’s time to PLAN and ORGANIZE in order to make things go more smoothly for yourself and your family.   Right??  Anyway, it’s not a celebration until there are some PRESENTS, right??  So, I’ll run a special!!  Aren’t you glad you read all the way to the bottom?

If you book an organizing session during the month of February, it will be:

10% off 3-hour sessions, 15% off 4-hour sessions, and 20% off 5-hr sessions!!                     Or, 20% off if you book more than one session!

Happy 1-year Biz-versary to Love Your Space Organizing!