Quick Tips (15) – How To Keep Tape Ends Visible

Do you ever struggle to find the end of tape on a roll? I often run my finger over the surface several times hoping to feel the edge. Here’s a helpful tip to put an end to the problem.

Place a button at the end each time you use the tape. It will separate the end from the roll, making the edge immediately visible. Simple and 100% effective.




Quick Tips (14) – How to Organize Your Spices

Spices should be stored away from light and heat. An easy and space saving method for spice storage is to purchase a hanging shoe organizer (a child’s size works well) and place your spices in the individual compartments. You can hang the organizer from the door or anywhere within your pantry.

As an added benefit, the clear plastic will make each spice easily identifiable, which will also save you time in the kitchen.



How to Organize Product Manuals, Warranties, and Receipts

Have you ever wasted an afternoon looking for a product manual or a receipt to prove your warranty is still in effect? Here is an easy way to get all those booklets and receipts organized and easily accessible.

Purchase a large three-ring binder notebook and a box of clear sheet protectors. Every time you purchase a new product for your home, immediately staple the receipt to the inside cover. Then place the booklet in a sheet protector and file it in the notebook. It’s helpful to alphabetize your manuals, but not absolutely necessary. Also, note the date you mailed in the warranty or registered the product online.

Any other important information, such as service records, can be filed with the product’s manual. Now you will have all pertinent information at your fingertips, which will save you lots of time in the future.




Quick Tips (8) – How to declutter your bathroom countertop permanently

What’s the condition of your bathroom as you leave for work in the morning? Most busy families rush through their morning routines, leaving brushes, combs, hair products, toothpaste, makeup, and countless other items all over the bathroom in their wake.

Here is a great tip for singles as well as families. Purchase a plastic pail large enough to hold all your bathroom essentials but small enough to fit in a bathroom cabinet. For families, purchase a pail for each family member and put their name on it.

Not only will all your items be in one place, saving you lots of time, but when your done with each item it simply gets placed back into the pail and put away before you leave the bathroom. No more counter clutter! No more wasted time searching for misplaced items!


Quick Tips (5) – Upstairs, downstairs

Although stairways provide great exercize, they aren’t the best place to save time when putting misplaced items back where they belong. Here is a method that works well if your home has two or more levels.

Place a basket near the top and bottom of the stairway. Whenever you have an item that needs to go upstairs, put it in the basket. Do the same at every level, but only carry the basket up or down when you have to make the trip. I love the baskets that have the “L’ shaped bottoms designed to fit stairs, but I just use decorative baskets that mix with the decor.

You will save lots of trips up and down the stairs as well as lots of time. Once the basket of items makes it to the correct level, you or your family members can put things back in their proper places.



How to blitz clean and have fun while doing it

I’ve read a lot of books on organizing and cleaning over the years and tried a wide variety of methods. However, my favorite is what I call “blitz” cleaning. In football, the blitz is a very focused play on the quarterback. In cleaning, the blitz is focused on one room or one area for a short period of time, usually about 10 minutes. One can endure anything for such a short period of time, right?

There are several great things about blitz cleaning. First, you only have to focus on a small piece of the big picture. Just thinking about cleaning a whole house can be exhausting. But cleaning a small area for a short duration of time is no big deal.

Second, knowing the clock is ticking, you just naturally take on a quicker pace and accomplish more than you would have if the whole day ahead were pegged for cleaning. Personally, it almost feels as if I’m in a competition to see how much can be accomplished in such a short span of time.

Third, there is the accrual effect. Ten minutes here and ten minutes there begin to add up over the course of a day. Yet you look back and don’t feel as if you spent the day cleaning, because you actually went about your business and only took “cleaning breaks.”

For me, the best plan is to choose an area that really needs attention. When the time is up, I go back to my business as usual. A little later when I need a break from work, I take on another blitz cleaning session somewhere else in the house. And by the way, blitz cleaning is a great thing to do with while talking on the phone with your ear phone attachment.

Of course, there is a place for a good thorough cleaning of each room in your home. However, blitz cleaning is a great method for keeping a home neat and orderly on a day by day basis, and it cuts out a lot of wasted time.



A little something about the mail

It’s one of those things that can pile up quickly if not attended to, growing into a formidable mountain by week’s end. Why let that happen when it’s so easy to deal with mail the minute it comes through the door.

Here is my daily routine that you can adapt to your circumstances.

(1) Deal with mail one time and only one time.
(2) As soon as you bring the mail into your house, stand over a trash can and throw away all junk mail, advertisements, etc.
(3) Place all bills into a basket or other file/receptacle that you have designated for this purpose.
(4) Place magazines in their appropriate places.
(5) Read letters or any other remaining mail and file or give them to members of the family to whom they belong. It is helpful to have files or baskets for each person who receives mail.

“A place for everything and everything in its place” is an excellent motto for mail. I have found this system to be a great time saver, and I know it’s one you will love once you begin using it.