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Friday, April 22 2011

If you have been following my blogs for the past several years when I began posting in January 2008, you will know that I don't tend to "vent"; I simply provide information that I feel will be useful to you.

However, lately I have been noticiing how several advertisements for organizational products have been "selling their wares" so to speak in print and on television.

One company in particular has a great line of products, but let's get real here.  Have you seen the ads for Real Simple?  Their products are available at Bed, Bath & Beyond.  They sell over the door shoe organizers, storage bins, purse organizers, sweater organizers and slim line hangers, to name a few.

The products are great - I use them quite often for my clients - but their ads, that's another story.

There is one ad in particular that was in the Real Simple magazine not that long ago.  It shows a picture of a closet.  I don't know about you, but in all my years, I have never seen such a minimalistic closet as this one.  Granted, their products help categorize items together and that's a great thing.  However, do you know any woman whose entire wardrobe consists of 6 pair of shoes, 8 handbags, 18 tops and two pair of pants?  And to top it off, the floor is completely clear!  Who lives like this?  Not anyone I know. 

A closet organized with Real Simple Solutions products

Most people I work with have closets so full of clothing, they don't even know what they have until we go through it.  There is stuff on the shelf above the rod, the rod is jammed with all types of clothing on all types of hangers and the floor is filled with shoes, boxes of miscellaneous items and some things that are not even identifiable.  That's to be expected when you are dealing with clutter, but trust me, when I get done doing what I do best, it will never end up looking like the closet in the picture above.  

I truly think the advertisers should put more effort into how they display their products in a more realistic way.  Don't make people feel bad that they have so much more to store away.  Show them how a full closet full of clothing, shoes and accessories can realistically look with the use of their products.  I know their line of products is called "Real Simple" but...

That's all I'm saying.

If you are feeling overwhelmed with the clutter in your closet and need some help, don't hesitate to contact me.  I will be glad to help - but please, don't expect me to get rid of so much of your stuff that it looks like the ad above.  That will not be happening!

 

 

Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 10:39 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, April 15 2011

One of the main reasons I became a professional organizer 7 years ago was so that I could help others overcome the feeling of overwhelm when it comes to getting organized.  I have the ability to see past the clutter and overwhelm and break things down into manageable pieces so that we can move forward to achieve the goals my clients have in mind.

I have found when I first meet with so many of my clients that they feel a sense of dread.  They cannot imagine how we can clear the clutter, get organized and put in systems to simplify their lives.  By the time I leave their home after the initial consultation, they are already feeling better about their situation and the potential of the space we are going to work on, whether it be one particular room or the entire home.  At that point, the process has already begun.  There is hope, there is potential.

The reason I bring this issue up is that sometimes we need to get past our fears in order to move forward, whether it relates directly to getting organized or taking on challenges that are new and different.

As my business continues to grow, I am given many new opportunities to get my message out to others.  I have been doing more public speaking this year and I now have been asked to appear on a radio show to share my knowledge and skills with others about the vast topic of organizing.

I must admit I am a little nervous about this new opportunity.  I always want to be prepared so I can provide the best content possible and this type of situation is more informal and "off the cuff", so to speak.  I have certainly worked hard in the past several years to challenge myself and get past any fears I may have about taking on something new, and so far, it's all been good.  I plan to take this same philosophy to the radio show I will be recording at the end of May/beginning of June.  I will simply do the best I can and be confident that it will be just fine.

Take my advice.  When it comes to overcoming the fear and overwhelm in your life, whether it is getting organized or simply doing something you have never done before, jump in.  As Nike says "Just Do It"!  I believe you will find that it will all work out.

So, get out there and do that something new and enjoy the journey!

If you need any assistance in getting over your sense of overwhelm when it comes to getting organized, contact me.  I would be happy to help.

Until next time, wishing you an organized day.

 

Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 10:57 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, April 09 2011

I don't know about you, but the dishwasher is one of the most used appliances in my kitchen.  The door must open dozens of times a day and it is filled with plates, bowls, glassware and silverware, among other items.

In order to maximize the potential of your dishwasher, consider the following tips:

  • Check the manual that came with your dishwasher for the manufacturer’s recommendations on water temperature.  Many dishwashers have internal heating elements that allow you to set the water heater to a lower temperature. This will save on your energy bill.
  • Scrape off, don’t rinse off, large food pieces and bones. Put the bones in the trash, not down the garbage disposer.  Soaking or prewashing is generally only recommended in cases of burned-on or dried-on food.  This will save on your water bill.
  • Be sure that when you run your dishwasher, it is full, but not overloaded.  You want to only run it when you have enough for a full load, but you don't want to over stuff it with items.  This will cause the dishwasher to wash less effectively and you might end up with some dirty dishes at the end.  That is a waste of time, water and energy!
  • Don’t use the "rinse hold" function on your machine for just a few soiled dishes. It uses 3 to 7 gallons of hot water each time you use it.  If possible, utilize the "normal" setting and save the "pots and pans" setting for when you really need it.  This will save water and energy as well.
  • Let your dishes air dry. If you don’t have an automatic air-dry switch, turn off the control knob after the final rinse and prop the door open a little so the dishes will dry faster. 

Utilizing these tips will enable you to make the best use of your dishwasher and save you money at the same time.

Do you have any other money saving tips when it comes to your dishwasher?  Share your thoughts.

In the meantime, have a great week!

 

Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 03:17 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, April 03 2011

Spring has finally sprung!  My gorgeous crocus have bloomed and the hyacinth are following shortly.

With the weather slowly getting warmer, it's time to get out of the house - and into the garage.  Everything has been stashed in there all winter and it's time to make some sense of it all.

Making use of your driveway as a staging zone is best.  Empty everything out of the garage, section by section and consider the following tips for getting it organized:

  • Hang your tools from hooks on a pegboard over a work table, using labeled screw top jars or a drawer system for separating out small pieces of hardware.
  • Set up shelving around the perimeter of your garage for storing small items - such as car care, gardening supplies, paint, etc.
  • Store small gardening items such as gloves, hats, trowels and clippers in a basket with a handle to make it easy to carry them back and forth to the yard.
  • Use heavy duty hooks on the ceiling or wall to hang bicycles, sporting equipment and ladders to get them off the floor.
  • Keep a mat or low shelf by the door leading into the house for holding muddy shoes to keep dirt from getting tracked inside.
  • For the kids (and even adults!), create a zone where all the sports equipment, balls, lawn toys and beach paraphernalia can be stored together.  Out of season, they can be stored on racks hanging from the ceiling to create more space for the car.
  • Make vehicle maintenance easier by storing your car care products in a large plastic bucket, along with rags, sponges and paper towels.
  • Remember to leave enough room on either side of the garage so you can open your car door without bumping into shelving, tools or bicycles.  (The garage IS intended to store the car - after all!)

If you need further assistance in getting this or any other area of your home organized, don't hesitate to contact me.

And enjoy your Spring! 

Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 10:54 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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