3 {Facetious} Reasons To Leave Your Stuff Out So You Can Find It

Do you resist putting your stuff away because you don’t have the energy or you want to be able to find it?  This might be a good solution for a limited number of things but leaving a lot of stuff out creates piles of clutter, confusion and sometimes a big mess.

There are 3 {facetious} Reasons To Leave Your Stuff Out.

1. Searching for things is fun.  The longer the search, the more fun you have, especially when you are pressed for time.

2. You love to shop and don’t mind spending money and time replacing items when you can’t find the one you own.  It’s not that costly….$10 here, $2 there.

3.  Piles, mounds and gobs of clutter don’t really bother you…..until you are expecting company.  How many times have you stashed it and never look at it again?

>>>>Tired of searching for things, spending money on replacements and creating more clutter to clean up?

Find a logical home for your things by following these 3 Simple! tips.

1. Store your frequently used items in the most accessible areas.  You don’t want to have to use a step stool, flashlight, or excessive bending to reach them.

2. Rarely used items may be stored on the highest shelves or the dark recesses of your storage areas.  Consider giving some of these items away since they are used so rarely.

3. Can’t decide where to put something?  Ask yourself these questions.

A.} Where would I look for it when I need it?

B.} Where do I use it?

B.I.N.G.O., now your things will have a home.  {if you are still stuck, leave a comment and I will help you figure it out}

Practice finding homes for things by putting 5 things away right now.  GO!





Are You Afraid to Get Rid of Stuff?

During the decluttering process you may find that fear prevents you from getting rid of stuff.

Fear won’t let you move forward, it keeps you stuck.

You are afraid that you might need the stuff “someday.”

When FEAR takes a hold of you, try this……ask yourself what would happen if I need it? How bad will it be? Have a brief discussion with yourself (my clients and I do this together).

My daughter's first day of kindergarten.

My daughter’s first day of kindergarten.

I received a text from my daughter, who is away at college. She asked me if I kept her dinosaur toys she played with in her sandbox. She loved those dinosaurs and I have fond memories of watching her play with them for hours.  Now she wanted to use them for a photography project this semester.

I told her that I either sold them or gave them away, years ago…...with her permission.

She said, and I quote, “but I want my toys back!, I was too young to know better” (than to give them away). My daughter is almost 20. Who would have thought?

I told her we kept a few of her other toys and she replied, “yeah but I wanted the dinos, Oh well.”

Notice the oh well part of her statement. She decided it was okay and moved on to texting about other things.

I can assure you that it will be okay for you also.  It’s just stuff.  Do you ever regret giving something away?



[Day 3] Fridge Door: Kitchen Clutter Clear Out

Okay folks.  It’s day 3 of the kitchen clutter clear out.  I’m going to share some tips to help you de-clutter the door of your fridge. Have you noticed how I’m dividing kitchen organization into very small, manageable projects?  This is a good habit to get into. Simply divide your house into small organizing projects and organize for 15-30 minutes every day until the clutter is gone!



When is the last time you really looked at the bottles and jars that sit inside the door of your fridge?  Weeks, months, years??  The door of my fridge needed clearing out.



Here are the steps to de-cluttering the door of your fridge.

  • Remove every bottle and jar.
  • Fill your sink with soapy water and use it to wipe down the shelves and the door.
  • Check the expiration dates and toss out-dated items.
  • If you can’t find the date and you are pretty sure you purchased the item more than a year ago, toss it.  It’s not worth getting sick.
  • Categorize your bottles and jars and group the like items together:  burger toppings together, sandwich fixings together, dressings together, etc.
  • Be careful when purchasing condiments.  Only purchase an item if you are sure you will use it in the very near future, not because it’s on sale or something you want to use for a future party—i.e. the fancy pestos, dips, spreads, and other specialty items you find at William Sonoma or Trader Joes:).

How many expired bottles/jars did you find?



[Day 2] Top of Fridge: Kitchen Clutter Clear Out

Do you have clutter on the top of your fridge?  It’s really hard not to use that space for storage clutter.  It’s a flat surface, out of the way, and perfect for the stuff you can’t fit into a cabinet.


Unfortunately, once we put stuff up there, we tend to forget about it.   Has this happened in your kitchen?  Follow the steps below and clear out the clutter.

  • Remove everything from the top of your fridge.
  • Toss stale food and put away things that don’t belong up there (toys, clothing, trash, papers).
  • Wipe the surface; there will probably be a thick layer of kitchen grease and grime.
  • Be selective when you put items back.  Don’t let the clutter return.
  • Use baskets or bins to contain items.
  • Repeat this process a couple times a year.


You may find some treasures while clearing the clutter off the top of your fridge.  What is the most unusual item you found?







Perfect, Clutter-Free Mom’s Day Gifts

Mother and Daughter Holding a Bouquet of Flowers

If you want to honor your mom, grandmother or someone who has been “like a mom” to you, there are some wonderful, meaningful options that will not add clutter to their lives.

First of all, consider the following:

Has she dropped gift hints?  If so, then at least you know she wants the gift and will use it.

What hobbies does she enjoy?

Now for some options:

  • If she enjoys reading she might like a gift card to a local book store, Amazon.com or I-tunes for book downloads.
  • If she gardens give her a potted outdoor plant, gift card to a nursery, or offer to help plant her garden.
  • Is she a bird lover? Present her with seed for her bird feeder.
  • Does she love to cook?  A gift card to a store that specializes in spices, oils or vinegar may be nice.
  • Has she been asking you to teach her a skill you excel at?  Spend time teaching her to knit, paint, cook, play golf, tennis, garden, play the piano or organize.
  • Is she in need of some pampering?  A gift card for a massage, pedicure or manicure may be perfect.
  • Do you enjoy each other’s company? Take her out to lunch, dinner, to a movie, or a concert.
  • If she is sentimental a handwritten note telling her how special she is would be lovely.

Make this mother’s day a clutter-free day!  Leave a comment with your clutter-free gift ideas.

The gift of organization is clutter-free!  Contact Jill if you are interested in learning about her gift certificates. 608-575-7467




Free Paper Shredding Events

eye of the gerbera

Spring is the time of year for filing taxes, disappearing piles of snirt (snow+dirt), de-cluttering and FREE paper shredding events.

If you live in the Madison, WI area, click here for a list of local events.

These events are happening all over the U.S.  Search the internet for events going on in your area.


15 Minutes to a De-Cluttered Home

the buck garden in new jersay

Spring is the time of year where I really get in the mood to lighten up and let go of the clutter.  How about you?  Are you ready for a change?

If are ready to kick out the clutter, join my 30 Day Spring De-Cluttering Challenge.  Receive support, motivation, and daily organizing tasks.  It begins on Monday, April 1st, 2013.  Here are all the glorious details:)

Too many donation requests from charities?

HIf you have donated to charitable organizations in the past you probably receive several donation requests in your mailbox every week.  Did you know some charities sell, share or rent your information with other charities?  It’s confusing and time consuming to keep up with the solicitations.  You wonder, didn’t I donate to this charity already?  When did I donate to that charity, this year, last year, never?

How do you keep track of all those requests and plan your giving?  Before you become more confused and frustrated,  take back control and organize your giving with the following steps.

  1. Create a budget for your total annual contributions and revise this annually if needed.
  2. Do you want to give monthly, quarterly, semi-annually or annually?
  3. List the charities you want to support on a piece of paper or in a computer document (spread sheet or word doc.)  Now you know what organizations you want to support, when you want to support them and your budget.
  4. When you collect your mail you can be confident and toss, shred or recycle solicitations from charities you do not support, charities you are not scheduled to support, or duplicate solicitations.  Don’t let fear prevent you from tossing.  You will receive another mailing or you may find the charity on-line when it’s time to donate.

Have you received solicitations from new charities and you want more information before giving?  Check them out at the website Charity navigator.

Is your collection meaningful or a burden?


Most of us have collected one thing or another during our lives.  Our collection grows, sometimes out of control, once we tell someone about our collection.  We receive pieces to add to our as gifts than we may have intended to collect.

What do you collect?

I was a collector, until I outgrew my collections.  I started out collecting soap from hotels when my dad traveled for business.  He was very frugal and convinced me, rather easily, that the hotel soap he presented to me upon his return, was actually a great souvenir! My collection grew until it filled  a large box that resided under my bed.  When my sister did a semester abroad, she brought home soap from other countries.  I was thrilled!  This collection brought me joy, believe it or not.  Friends had to look at it and smell the soap when they visited.  Weird, huh!

During one period of my life, I was an avid figure skater.  Because of this skating obsession, my mom began giving me skating ornaments.  This was a wonderful collection because I had something to put on my tree when I married.  I looked forward to trimming the tree with my skaters.  I have since out grown this obsession and given most of the skaters away to charity.

So what is the point of my sharing my collection’s story?

I would like you to think about your current collections.  Do they continue to bring you joy?  Are they a burden because you feel guilty when they no longer bring you pleasure?  Do you continue to receive pieces for you collection as gifts and you have run out of space?  Does your collection require space you no longer want to devote to the collection?  Think about it.

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, it may be time to part ways with your collection.

What is the worst thing that would happen if you donated or sold your collection?

Organizing the dining room so you may dine

Traditional Style Dining Room

Has your dining room become a room to dump items you bring into your home, items you recently purchased, or a room for projects?  When was the last time you dined in your dining room?  Even if you rarely this room, wouldn’t it be nice to have it organized and clutter-free?

Set up containers for trash, recycle, donate and items that belong in another room and follow these 5 steps for a dining room you can dine in.

  1. Clear the floor.  Put items where they belong or donate.  Vacuum.  This will make a big impact.
  2. Clear the surface of the dining room table and dust.  Put items away.
  3. Clear other surfaces and dust.  Now you are beginning to see the light!
  4. Donate decorative items you no longer like and no longer want to dust.
  5. Go through every drawer and cabinet.  Break it up into small bits, one drawer or cabinet each day or each session.  Donate excess.  How many table linens and serving dishes do you need to keep?  Beware of keeping items because of guilt.  This won’t help you become clutter-free.  Evaluate every napkin holder, candle, candle holder, trivet, and salt shaker.  Use a clip style clothing hanger to hang linens in a spare closet keeping them wrinkle free.

Choose just one of the above steps to focus on at a time and in a matter of days or weeks you will have a clutter-free and organized dining room once again.