Looking for the perfect cleaning resource? Check out my book, The Organically Clean Home!

The Perfect Picnic Bag

The Perfect Picnic Bag via Clean Mama

I like to plan things out and being spontaneous isn’t one of my best qualities.  But I’ve found that I can embrace spontaneity with a little planning ahead.  And guess what?  No one needs to know that the surprise picnic was easy to pull together.  In the summer it’s fun to grab sandwiches for lunch or dinner and head to a park for a little impromptu picnic.  This perfect picnic bag is how I pull it off with ease.  It’s super easy to pull together – you might even have the necessities already!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • a bag large enough to hold your supplies
  • plastic bags to tote away any garbage
  • disposable plates
  • wipes for hand and face wiping
  • silverware and napkins
  • plastic straws (if necessary)
  • bath towel to wipe down any tables or equipment
  • tablecloth for sitting on or covering a picnic table
  • large rocks (in a plastic bag) to hold down the picnic tablecloth or blanket

Picnic Bag Supplies via Clean Mama

I love having silverware ready to go – this works great for get-togethers and for this picnic tote.  If I’m doing this for a get together I’ll put the wrapped silverware in a basket at the start of the buffet line or in the middle of the table.  Easy peasy!  All you need is silverware (disposable or not), napkins, and washi tape.  Simply roll the silverware into the napkin and adhere a little washi tape to keep it together and that’s it!

Pre-Wrap Silverware via Clean Mama

Ready to make a little spontaneity in your meal planning?  My favorite part of picnic-ing (next to the quality family time, of course!)?  No kitchen mess!

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The One Task That Will Keep Your Home Clutter-Free

The One Task That Will Keep Your Home Clutter-Free via Clean Mama

If you are new here, chances are the title of this blog post reeled you in.  If you’re a regular reader, you know that I am big on simplifying and streamlining tasks around the house.  Keep reading for some realistic action steps you can apply today to getting and keeping your home clutter-free.

If you can relate to at least one of these statements, chances are you can benefit from ONE TASK that will help you and your family keep your home clutter-free:

  • You are always trying to de-clutter.
  • You struggle with too much stuff.
  • You feel crabby when things are left out around the house.
  • You can’t find things quickly.
  • You have threatened to throw out or give away all.the.things.

Ready for the ‘secret’ task that will change everything you know about cleaning house?  That’s a little bit overboard but if you and your family put it into motion, it WILL change how your home looks, feels, and functions.

Take it out, put it away.

 

Mind blowing, right?  Not really, but it’s a simple thing that will save time and energy every single day when it is put into practice.  When you’re running from one place to another or rushing around, it’s so much easier to just leave that makeup on the counter, those toys on the floor, the dishes on the sink, etc.  Think about how much time you’d save if things where were they belonged AND think about how you’d feel if your house felt less cluttered and messy.

Makeup Out - Makeup Put Away via Clean Mama

Maybe you try really hard to put things away or maybe you remind your kids multiple times a day to put things away, but you still have that cluttered feeling.  Need some realistic and  attainable action steps that you can put into practice TODAY to try this one simple task?

Toys Out - Toys Put Away via Clean Mama

START HERE:

  • WORST CASE SCENARIO | If your home is cluttered and needs some attention immediately, grab three garbage bags and load them up with things to donate or toss.  Still cluttered?  Repeat until you can see the floor and you feel less overwhelmed with the current situation.
  • BEST CASE SCENARIO |  If you simply have a couple scattered things that need to be put away, run around and gather them up in a small laundry basket and put them in their proper places.  Enlist help from other members of your family and get it done in a hurry.
  • SOMEWHERE IN BETWEEN | Grab a garbage bag and fill it up with things to toss or donate.  Fill a small laundry basket with things that need to be relocated and put them away.

 

MAINTENANCE:

  • TAKE IT OUT, PUT IT AWAY | Put this simple phrase into practice.  Think about it yourself throughout the day and really try to put things away as you take them out or bring them into the house.  Teach your kids how to put this into practice as well by enforcing the rule throughout the day.  It’s amazing what a difference it will make!
  • CLUTTER | Take care of it daily.  Every single day of the week take a couple minutes to put things away.  For kids, a nightly quick clean up is helpful for putting the habit into practice.  If you notice on my cleaning routine, CLUTTER appears daily.  That’s because it needs to be dealt with on a daily basis.
  • MAIL | Mail and paper have a way of multiplying if they aren’t dealt with routinely.  When you bring the mail in, process it.  When the kids bring home papers, process them.  Don’t let the paper pile up or it will take over your counters and kitchen table.

Mail Out - Mail Processed via Clean Mama

Take it out, put it away.

 

What do you think?  Is this simple phrase going to change your life?  Tell me what you think in the comments and tell me what tips and tricks you use to put this into practice!

The One Task That Will Keep Your Home Clutter-Free 2 via Clean Mama

If you like this post, check out this post – 6 Things I do Every Day to Keep the House Clean!

Six Things I Do Every Day to Keep the House Clean via Clean Mama

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Clean Mama’s Favorites on The Organizing Store

I am so excited to let you know that I have a collection of my favorite things at The Organizing Store.  If you haven’t been to The Organizing Store, head on over and check them out!  I have personally met the owners, Deb and Allie and can tell you that they are just the kind of people you’re going to love shopping with.  They put the best products on their site and make it so fun to figure out what to shop for to organize your home!

Clean Mama on the Organizing Store

Check out my curated shop – you’ll find some of my favorite things, sure to help you get your home organized and clean in a hurry!

The Organizing Store Fave Products

If that isn’t enough excitement for one day, click on the image below to see The Ultimate Cleaning Cupboard Giveaway they have this week too!

Giveaway InstagramThis post contains affiliate links – you can go here to see my affiliate link policy.  As always, I only recommend products that I use and love.

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The Ultimate Guide to Simple Organizing

The Ultimate Guide to Simple Organizing via Clean Mama

I love to organize but I like to keep the process and solution simple and easy to maintain.  I’ve written a lot about organizing systems and processes over the past year – scroll down to see the categories and posts.  Make sure you pin the post for later!  Ready for 2015?  Don’t miss the new FREE calendar for January!

Methods and Systems:

Memorabilia and Collections:

Craft and Art Supply Storage:

Kids and Toys:

Bedrooms and Living Spaces:

Kitchen:

Bathroom: 

Paper Organization: 

Cleaning and Cleaning Supplies:

Have you joined the HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY? It’s a monthly subscription you’ll love – check it out!

HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY BUTTON

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FREE Cleaning Calendar for January 2015 + Bonus Declutter Printable

Happy (almost) 2015!  If you’re feeling like you need some help with your cleaning and homekeeping and don’t know where to start, you’re going to love this series.  (Make sure you scroll all the way to the bottom of the post for an awesome Instagram challenge too.)  I’m so excited to introduce the NEW free monthly calendar to you and the series for 2015!  I’m calling it ….

Fresh Start Clean+Organized 2015

 

If you’ve been following Clean Mama for even a week, I hope you know that everyday is a chance to start over and so is every week, month, etc.  I hope that you find that my cleaning routine is SIMPLE, EASY TO IMPLEMENT, and full of GRACE.

Read on, grab the FREE calendar for January and get ready to see how doing a little bit everyday really is the secret to a clean house.

January 2015 Cleaning Routine Infographic - Clean Mama

 

Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for January and give it a go. Follow along all year for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. New here? I’ll be explaining the tasks more in the next week – it’ll be fun and easy to implement, I promise!

January 2015 Cleaning Routine - Clean Mama

Go here to grab your FREE calendar for January 2015!

I’m also doing a DECLUTTER CHALLENGE with The Shabby Creek Cottage and The Country Chic Cottage on Instagram for the month of January too!  It’s #clutterfree30 and it’s 30 minutes a day to clutter-free home!  Follow me on Instagram @cleanmama and join @shabbycreek and @countrychiccottage as we declutter right along with you!  I’ll be updating here on the weekends and we’ll be featuring our favorites from Instagram that are tagged #clutterfree30.  (You can follow along even if you don’t have a smartphone – you can get an Instagram account with any computer or tablet.  Or if you don’t want to sign up, you can peek at my Instagram account without an IG account :)

clutterfree challenge

If you’re wanting to do the #clutterfree30 challenge and want a checklist, I’ve got you covered!  I combined the cleaning calendar with the challenge for a free printable, perfect to get your 2015 off to a great (fresh) start!

January 2015 Cleaning Routine + IG declutter challenge

Go here to grab the January calendar with the #declutter30 challenge!

These printables are free in my shop – if you want to download them from googledocs you can go here to do that.  Questions about my printables or need help downloading?  Check out my FAQ page!

Want to make 2015 the year that you cleaned and organized everything? Me too!

 250 x250 CMP

(If you like this calendar style, you’ll love the Everyday Series in my shop!)

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Simple Tips for Organizing Bathrooms

8 Simple Tips for Organizing Bathrooms via Clean Mama The 2014 Start Here series has been a huge hit.  Every week, we’ve tackled a small organizing task in our homes with the hopes of organizing our lives a little better.  As the year is nearing a close, every week in December I am highlighting an area in the home to work on.  This is a great time to finish up any missed tasks or take a couple minutes to get a specific area tidied up a bit.  This week take some time to straighten up areas in your BATHROOMS that need a little attention.  Here are some posts from this year to give you a little inspiration and help along the way.  Grab the FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for December to get you started!  Look for a BRAND NEW design for the 2015 FREE calendar and a new series!  Subscribe so you don’t miss a single post.

  • Bathroom counters can easily become a jumbled mess of supplies, cosmetics and odds and ends. Clear off your bathroom counters for good with these tips.
  • Clean out the clutter and disorganization under your bathroom sink with these four tips.
  • Make your bathroom drawers easy to navigate when you implement an organization system that works.
  • Clear out the clutter in your bathroom shower with some quick and easy organizing tips.
  • Bathroom toiletries have a habit of multiplying and getting out of control in a hurry. Try out these simple suggestions to bring order to your toiletries.
  • You won’t believe what a difference it makes to go through your towels and linens in order to make more room in your linen closet.
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Simple Organizing Systems that Work

Simple Organizing Systems that Work via Clean Mama

The 2014 Start Here series has been a huge hit.  Every week, we’ve tackled a small organizing task in our homes with the hopes of organizing our lives a little better.  As the year is nearing a close, every week in December I am highlighting an area in the home to work on.  This is a great time to finish up any missed tasks or take a couple minutes to get a specific area tidied up a bit.  This week take some time to straighten up any ORGANIZING SYSTEMS that need a little attention.  Here are some posts from this year to give you a little inspiration and help along the way.  Grab the FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for December to get you started!  Look for a BRAND NEW design for the 2015 FREE calendar and a new series!  Subscribe so you don’t miss a single post.

  • Organize your baking supplies, spices and herbs logically in order to find what you are looking for faster.
  • When is the last time you cleaned and organized your freezer? Utilize your space effectively to maximize your storage.
  • Photographs, whether paper or digital, can easily pile up and be incredibly unorganized. These methods will help you quickly make order of your pictures.
  • To keep or to toss? Sorting through memorabilia can be emotional and difficult. Implement these tips to help you go through things as painlessly as possible.
  • Create zones for your food storage to keep everything accessible and organized.
  • End the clutter trap under your bathroom sink with some simple organizational strategies.
  • Homework time can be a stressful time of searching for supplies and finding lost necessities. Create a homework station to get homework time started on the right foot.
  • Overcome the paper clutter with these 8 practical strategies to help you organize.
  • Create a simple homework caddy to contain all your school supplies and make homework time more manageable.
  • Toys chaos driving you crazy? Try this one simple tip to help toys find and keep their home.
  • Organize your purse so that it stays that way with this method.
  • DIY cleaners are not only better for your family but better on your pocketbook too. Assemble a DIY cleaner caddy to keep your supplies and ingredients at hand.
  • That space under kitchen sinks can easily become a jumble of cleaners, odds and ends and chaos. Try out these storage solutions to tidy up that space in a jiffy.
  • Do you know the secret to keeping mail off your counter? It’s not as tricky as you think!
  • Counter clutter driving you crazy? The tips will help make order of your chaos once and for all.
  • Create some craft storage that really works with minimal investment and maximum impact.
  • Eliminate your paper clutter with these simple solutions.
  • Try these tips for putting away your holiday decorations this year in an organized way.
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Simple Tips for Organized Bedrooms & Living Spaces

 

Simple Tips for Organized Bedrooms and Living Spaces via Clean Mama

The 2014 Start Here series has been a huge hit.  Every week, we’ve tackled a small organizing task in our homes with the hopes of organizing our lives a little better.  As the year is nearing a close, every week in December I am highlighting an area in the home to work on.  This is a great time to finish up any missed tasks or take a couple minutes to get a specific area tidied up a bit.  This week take some time to straighten up any areas in your BEDROOMS AND LIVING AREAS that need a little attention.  Here are some posts from this year to give you a little inspiration and help along the way.  Grab the FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for December to get you started!  Look for a BRAND NEW design for the 2015 FREE calendar and a new series!  Subscribe so you don’t miss a single post.

  • Your entryway and mudroom can set the tone for how you feel when you walk in to your home. These three steps to a clean and organized mudroom will start you off on the right foot.
  • It’s easy for closets to become a tangled mess of clothes and disorganization. Keep everyone’s clothes organized and closets clean with these five tips.
  • No more searching for random socks and missing undies with these three organizational suggestions.
  • These four steps to an organized nightstand will keep those things you want handy at your fingertips and all the unnecessary not.
  • When is the last time you went through your books? Consider purging your books and quickly tidy up your bookshelves with these tips.

 

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Simple Tips for Organizing the Kitchen

 

Simple Tips for Organizing the Kitchen via Clean Mama

Today is the LAST DAY for the huge Black Friday – Cyber Monday sale in my shop – go to this post for more info!

The 2014 Start Here series has been a huge hit.  Every week, we’ve tackled a small organizing task in our homes with the hopes of organizing our lives a little better.  As the year is nearing a close, every week in December I am highlighting an area in the home to work on.  This is a great time to finish up any missed tasks or take a couple minutes to get a specific area tidied up a bit.  This week take some time to straighten up any areas in your KITCHEN that need a little attention.  Here are some posts from this year to give you a little inspiration and help along the way.  Grab the FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for December to get you started!  Look for a BRAND NEW design for the 2015 FREE calendar and a new series!  Subscribe so you don’t miss a single post.

  • If the clutter on your counters are driving you bonkers, it’s time to implement these tips on eliminating it for good!
  • Under the sink organization can be tricky, but not when you implement these four simple concepts.
  • Get ready for a flurry of baking with these three tips on how to organize baking supplies.
  • Time to tidy up your pantry so you can actually find things! Create zones and storage to make life easier with these tips.
  • Feel like you never can find big chunks of time to organize? Take 15 minutes out of your day and organize a kitchen drawer with these easy tips.
  • Tackle that mess of a junk drawer and create some order in only 15 minutes with these helpful suggestions.
  • Organize your kitchen drawers logically to minimize disorganization and maximize function.
  • Want to know the secret to keeping mail and paper clutter off the counter and in to some sort of a system? Check out these tips out for some advice.

 

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Homekeeping Society | December 2014 Essentials

Homekeeping Society - Monthly Essentials - December 2014

First of all, your response to Homekeeping Society has blown me away!  I am so excited to have so many of YOU keeping up with the everyday tasks with the help of the Homekeeping Society.  December’s monthly essentials are ready for downloading if you’re a member (log in here) and if you’d like to purchase today, it’s an instant (almost – it might a few minutes) download.  The Homekeeping Society MONTHLY SUBSCRIPTION is designed to create order out of your household chaos and help you keep your home clean and your mind less cluttered.  Take a peek at what I’ve created for the busy month of December – you’re going to love it!

Daily Planner and Weekly Docket - Homekeeping Society - December 2014 via Clean Mama

Keeping a home clean can be both rewarding and frustrating. Sure, it’s possible to get your home clean, but to keep it that way can be the biggest challenge. Throw in the additions of busy schedules, jobs, kids, chaos and lack of time and it can feel downright defeating many days. Why bother cleaning when it’s only going to be a mess again the next day!

Go here to sign up for a digital subscription or go here to sign up for the printed for you subscription.

 Homekeeping Society - Details - December 2014 via Clean Mama

I understand just where you are coming from. Keeping your home clean while maintaining your sanity can be incredibly stressful. You may feel as though you can’t do anything right when it comes to maintaining a clean, organized, and welcoming home and even if you could find the time, you wouldn’t know where to start.

 Checklists - Homekeeping Society - December 2014 via Clean Mama

Need some serious help, a virtual hand to hold and guide you through the process of cleaning, homekeeping, and creating a home you feel proud of? That’s exactly why I created the Homekeeping Society, the perfect monthly intervention that is purposely designed to get your life and home in order with ease and adorable seasonal touches to keep you motivated.

Menu Planning - Homekeeping Society - December 2014 via Clean Mama

I’ve created a monthly essentials subscription designed to help you get your home and life in order – HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY.  This monthly subscription is made for YOU to get your life in order – with ease and adorable seasonal touches to keep you motivated to do the daily tasks that get boring and monotonous.

Menu Planning Close-Up - Homekeeping Society - December 2014 via Clean Mama

 

Homekeeping Society Overview - Monthly Essentials - December 2014

HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT EVERY MONTH:

  1. INSTRUCTIONS – tells you how many pages to print out of each page and suggestions for implementing and making the pages work for you
  2. COVER PAGE – with the month and the inspirational quote for the month – great for putting in your binder or homekeeping notebook
  3. HOMEKEEPING FOCUS page – every month will focus on a room or area in the home (December is living areas) – this page lays it out and gives you room for making your own adjustments and goals
  4. TO DO LIST – every month features a new, and highly functional to do list
  5. DAILY PLANNER PAGE  (2 this month – Sunday start and Monday start)– great for those busy days (or every day!) includes schedule, to dos, notes, meal
  6. WEEKLY DOCKET– Use the weekly docket to see your whole week and schedule on a page
  7. MENU PLAN FOR THE WEEK WITH A SHOPPING LIST- make a menu plan and take it with you
  8. MENU PLAN FOR THE MONTH – always includes a list for recipe ideas or ingredients to pick up
  9. 2 MONTHLY CALENDARS (1 blank, 1 pre-filled) – suggested daily cleaning tasks, weekly cleaning tasks, rotating cleaning tasks, organizing suggestions
  10. SEASONAL PREPARATION PRINTABLE – a helpful seasonal prep printable is always included in the monthly subscription – perfect for placing in a binder (December is a holiday checklist)
  11. KITCHEN SINK QUOTE– the quote for the month – 5×7 – frame and put at your kitchen sink or tape to your fridge to give you a little motivation and inspiration for the month
  12. INFORMATION PAGE – this month includes 2 – one insurance information page and one medical information page – fill them out and save in a family info section of your homekeeping binder or notebook and you’ll have a complete information section (insurance, 401K, etc.)

Homekeeping Society December 2014 Digital and Printed for You via Clean Mama

Want to see more and get on the list?  I can’t wait for you to join me!  Go here to learn more and sign up for a digital subscription or go here for the printed for you subscription.  Want to see some ideas and more information on how to implement Homekeeping Society?  Go to this post.

Please note:  As a member, you will be able to download your digital subscription every month by going to your account page, click on the link for December and it will allow you to download the monthly essentials zip file.  If you are a member, your essentials are already in your account – yay!

SOURCES – in case you’re curious:

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Shop Update : Clean Mama’s Everyday Planner + FREE August Planner Pages

I’ve been working on a new planner style and format since I created a planner last year – for real.  I took a lot of things into consideration and have come up with a simple and perfectly functional planner that I absolutely LOVE and hope you will too!  Clean Mama’s Everyday Planner incorporates a few things that are really important to me – it has a straightforward and simple design, it’s super easy to print, and it prints perfectly back to back (hooray!).  It’s only available in black and white to make it easy to print on any printer (color, black and white, laser, inkjet….) and to keep the printing cost low.  I love the black and white design – it can be put in a fancy binder or planner, you can jazz it up with stickers, sticky notes, and washi tape and make it yours.  Better yet, if you combine it into a homekeeping notebook it’ll blend beautifully with what you have.  How about a couple pictures so you can see it?  (Make sure you scroll ALL the way down to the end for the FREE pages too!)

Clean Mama's Everyday Planner - A Simple, Perfectly Functional Planner via Clean Mama

Clean Mama’s Everyday Planner includes 160+ documents and has everything you need to assemble your own simple, perfect planner. Clean Mama’s Everyday Planner is in a simple and attractive format that works for any lifestyle and schedule. Print what you need or print it all out – either way you’ll love the black and white color scheme and ease of this planner. The planner is designed to be printed and bound or hole-punched – put it in a binder or have it professionally bound.  I printed my own on my inkjet printer and put it in a discbound notebook – I use an ARC punch and the Martha Stewart discbound notebook (both found at Staples).

Clean Mama's Everyday Planner via Clean Mama

 

Clean Mama's Everyday Planner - Monthly Calendars via Clean Mama

 

Prints perfectly front to back - Clean Mama's Everyday Planner

 

2 Versions of the Weekly Planner are Included via Clean Mama

 

Important Contacts - Clean Mama's Everyday Planner via Clean Mama

 

Notes page and Important Dates to Remember - Clean Mama's Everyday Planner
This listing is in 2 zip files – one for a blank planner and one for a planner with daily tasks (this is my FAVORITE feature!) – save and download both or just the one you will use. Each category is in its own file within the zip (the planner is together as one ‘document’), the calendar is separate and the pages are saved individually….this is so it’s super easy to print back to back or as A4/A5 size.

  • 16 Month Planner – each week on a 2 page spread – 140 pages – blank AND with Clean Mama’s suggested daily tasks are both included
  • Everyday Planner cover page – simple and sweet to match the planner
  • September 2014-December 2015 Calendar (vertical, binder style) – 16 pages
  • Notes page – ‘Jot It Down’
  • Important Dates to Remember – 1 page
  • Important Contacts

I know you’ll love Clean Mama’s Everyday Planner – I’ve added more products to match the planner in black and Clean Mama aqua – see the entire line here.

Not sure how to print a 140 page planner?  First of all, think about HOW you want the pages set up….you could print the calendars back to back with the ‘jot it down’ pages and then insert them between the planner pages.  Print the important contacts pages back to back and set up a little address book in your planner.  I love the important dates to remember page – perfect to write down all the special dates for each month – keep it front and center so you don’t forget that birthday again this year!

How in the world does one print a 140 page planner back to back without going through reams of paper in the process?  The EASIEST way is to print page 1 first by itself without anything on the back of it.  Then, print pages 2-140 BACK to BACK. Your printer will most likely stop halfway through and give you instructions on how to feed the already printed pages back into your printer. If you are unsure on how to do this, I recommend trying it out in ‘draft’ printing mode and printing page 1 and then pages 2-6 to make sure you get how to print back to back first. You can always send to a copy shop and have them print it back to back for you. Because the planner is one ‘document’ this is easy for them to upload and print.   Have a A4/A5 planner and want to resize?  Check out this post!  Want color and a non-dated planner spread?  Check out The Streamlined Life 2014/2015 Calendar and Planner Kit.

Want to try out the planner and see what you think?  How about getting August 2014 for FREE!?  Go here to grab August’s pages in my shop and here to grab them on Googledocs.

Clean Mama's Everyday Planner - Get August 2014 for FREE via Clean Mama

 

 

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How to Organize Your Purse (So It Stays that Way)

How to Organize Your Purse (so it stays that way) via Clean MamaOrganizing your purse will only take a couple minutes, but it’ll save you time in the long run because you’ll know exactly where everything is.  Traveling?  If you’re a passenger you can do this while you’re riding in the car.  Waiting to pick kids up?  That’s a perfect time to do a little purse organization!  Just grab a small bag to toss any garbage in before you start and you’ll be all set.

  • Start by emptying your purse.  If your purse needs to be wiped down or cleaned, take a couple minutes and do that before moving on to the organizing.
  • Throw anything away that shouldn’t be in there anyway – gum wrappers, old receipts, etc.
  • Relocate anything that should be stored elsewhere.
  • Put all the items that you want to keep on a surface and group like items together.  I keep a pretty simplified purse – just a makeup bag, wallet, and anything that I might need for the kids wherever we’re going.  I keep my planner at home unless I need it for wherever I’m headed.
  • If you find that you have a lot of receipts in your purse you might want to add a small plastic envelope to put them in until you can sort them out.
  • Once you have all your must-have items back in your purse designate a pocket or two for your keys and cell phone.  I find it super helpful to always put my cell phone and keys in the same pockets in my purse so I’m not digging around trying to find them.
  • How to keep it this way?  Keep LESS in your purse and empty weekly or daily so you are in the habit of keeping it this way.

Designate spots in your purse to always put your phone and keys via Clean Mama

Have a great idea for cleaning and organizing your purse? Leave it in the comments!

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Start Here. July 2014 FREE Cleaning + Organizing Calendar

start here logo

Happy July!  If you’ve been working through the Start Here. calendar since January I hope you’ve met successes and made some oodles of progress in your home. If you’re new here, check out the first post in this series for a little more explanation.

What’s behind the success of any clean and organized home?

Consistency and follow through.

This series Start Here. is a great place to start (and finish) because without starting something, you’ll never finish anything. Don’t get bogged down in the every day messiness that is life, you have to start somewhere to get anywhere and that’s what we’re doing today. Start here.

Ready? We all have to start somewhere – let’s Start Here.

Here’s a little infographic that explains the cleaning and organizing schedule…

Start Here.  Cleaning + Organizing Calendar Infographic via Clean Mama

Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for July (this is free in my shop – if you’d prefer to grab it from Googledocs, you can go here to grab it) and give it a go. Follow along all month for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. Need a little more explanation? Here’s a post on Weekly Cleaning Tasks and a post on Daily Cleaning Tasks. I’ve/we’ve covered a lot of cleaning and organizing ground – you can go here to see all the posts in this series.

FREE Cleaning + Organizing Calendar for JULY via Clean Mama

Go here to grab your FREE calendar for July 2014!

If you’re new here you might also like my new series all about homekeeping called Modern Day Homekeeping.

cmp ad - 250(If you like this calendar style, you’ll love The Simplified Life Series in my shop!)

Have you seen my book, The Organically Clean Home?  It’s the perfect companion to your homekeeping adventures!

The Organically Clean Home - Clean Mama

Follow along!

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A Simplified Week : Toiletries

a simplified week

As part of Start Here. I post a weekly recap with a couple ideas (mostly simple and easy to implement) for the week’s focus and a few ideas from the web that I’ve enjoyed over the week. Did you grab June’s FREE cleaning and organizing calendar?  Go here to grab it!

Toiletries:

  • If you have minimal time and want to do a quick and easy toiletry overhaul, start here. These simple suggestions will get you organized in no time. Via Clean Mama
  • When the  majority of your toiletries are stored in bathroom drawers, it doesn’t take long before they become jumbled and disorganized. I love this system of keeping everything in dividers and containers so that everything has it’s place. Via Pretty Well Organized
  • If you are looking to do a major purge and overhaul of your toiletries and bathroom storage space, check out this post. There are some creative solutions to storage that don’t involve a major investment and enlightening ideas on how you can do take control of your bathroom space. Via From Overwhelmed to Organized

Something to Eat:

  • This collection of 36 summer sides and salads will definitely get a workout in this house. I love a salad on warm summer evenings, not to mention there being plenty of yummy recipes for BBQ’s and get togethers. Via Two Peas and Their Pod

Something to Make:

  • Create a water garden complete with lily pads for your deck or patio. For those of us that don’t have the space or energy to add a pond to our backyard, this is a great substitute. Via What’s Ur Home Story

Something for the Kids:

  • I love this DIY Dry Erase book for kids. The concept is simple with hilarious results using copied family photos that kids can fancy up with their own twists. Via All For the Boys

Simplify:

  • Love making your own cleaners?  You have got to see some of the cutest labels I have seen out there!  Perfect for labeling, simply print out and pop them on the bottles for instant cuteness. Via The Handmade Home

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Simple Ways to Organize Kitchen Cupboards

This week’s focus is on kitchen cupboards.  (The weekly focus is always listed on the left hand side of the calendar in gray.)  If you haven’t grabbed February’s Cleaning + Organizing Calendar, go get it!  It’s free here.

Simple Ways to Organize Cupboards via Clean Mama

We’ve been undergoing a little kitchen renovation the past couple weeks and it’s nearly completed (yay!)  I’ve posted a couple pics on Instagram (cleanmama#) if you want to take a peek.  I’ve been working on rearranging and re-working the cupboards for optimal efficiency and ease of use.  Take a couple minutes this week to work on one kitchen cupboard, all your cupboards, or somewhere in between.  Here are a couple steps that I find helpful when organizing my cupboards.

  1. Empty the cupboard.
  2. Donate or toss anything you don’t need or use anymore.
  3. Wipe down the cupboard.
  4. Add a drawer liner (optional).
  5. Return items to the cupboard – stack items that can be stacked, group like items together, make sure your arrangement makes sense.
  6. Label (optional).

Want to take a peek at some organized cupboards?

Simplify your kitchen cupboards - Put Dishes Near the Dishwasher via Clean Mama

Keep your dishes near your sink and dishwasher to make emptying the dishwasher a little easier.

Simplify your kitchen cupboards - Label Your Drawers to Keep it Orderly via Clean Mama

I use my label maker with clear tape to label the pull-out drawers in my kitchen cupboards.  This may seem a little overboard but it helps anyone that’s putting dishes away know where they go and it keeps the drawers and cupboards neat and orderly.

Simplify your kitchen cupboards - Group Like Items Together via Clean Mama

Always, always group like items together.  Bowls, measuring cups, colanders, strainers, etc.  Anything that you have multiple items of can be stacked and placed near each other to keep items easy to find and put away.

Have any kitchen cupboard tips to share?

 

Follow along!

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