End of Summer

The end of summer is nigh, but the chaos of it lingers. In order to start the school year and fall season right, you’ll need to go through that chaos. Here are some tips for what to do with that summer clutter.

1.    Swimsuit you never wore. Get rid of something that you never used. That slightly ill-fitting swimsuit needs to go since you never wore it. There’s no point in having it hang around if you never really got to enjoy it.

2.    Beach toys you never used. Donate beach toys you never played with. Your kids may have had fun with them in the past, but if they didn’t use them this past summer, then they should go.

3.    Tons of tubes of expired sunscreen. Throw away expired sunscreen. Even if it’s near full, it doesn’t have the same protective properties once it’s expired.

4.    Outdoor toys the kids never played with. Sometimes even if a toy is brand new, the kids don’t play with it for whatever reason (even if you thought it was really cool). Toss the toys if they’re broken, and donate them if they’re perfectly fine.

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Tips for Managing Mayhem

This week is National Simplify Your Life Week. There are several areas we can all make a little less complicated. Below are some tips to simplify different areas of your life.
        Things you can completely discard. Decide what things you can get rid of. Go through desktops, drawers, bookshelves, and cabinets. If you haven’t used something in the last 12 months, and don’t plan on using it during a different season, then get rid of it. Throw it away, recycle it, or donate it.

        Volunteer position you don’t enjoy. Volunteering should be for causes you care about with people you enjoy spending your time with. If it’s not everything you want it to be, then don’t feel bad for not volunteering anymore. Replace that time with somewhere else you can volunteer or a hobby you enjoy. Your free time should be spent doing things you love.

        Eating takeout. Do you feel like you need to make dinner from scratch every night? Make it easier for yourself by having takeout one night a week.

        Limitations on someone that’s draining. Sometimes it’s people that make life a little messy. Communicate to them that your time and energy needs to be limited. Trying to help someone out is not wrong by any means, but unless they start taking initiative, it’s not helping anymore, but enabling.

        Asking for help. You don’t have to do everything on your own. Know your own limitations. If you’re starting to feel stressed, don’t be afraid to ask for help. For your personal life it could be as simple as hiring a babysitter or a pet sitter. And, if you need extra help with work, consider hiring an assistant or intern.

3 Tips for Shopping for the Dorms

Finally getting some freedom from your parents and you want to show them you can adult? Being prepared to live in the dorms is a mental as well as a physical feat. Everything is officially up to you to finish and follow through. Here are some ways to shop, and get your dorm ready:


1.    First, talk to your roommate. You’ll want to make sure you’re not bringing doubles of anything, and find out how much they are willing to share. Be honest with your lifestyle, and how you usually keep your room. You should both be prepared for the frustration that comes with sharing a room, but try not to judge on the way they organize; there is no right or wrong (unless there’s leftover pizza boxes that are starting to stink).

2.    Prepare a budget. Based off what you and your roommate decide to get for the dorm, you should next plan your budges stress on your (parent’s) wallet. Any budget is reasonable and based on your search skills, you can find items that fit within it.

3.    Resale shops are your new best friends. It’s fun shopping for your own place but in all reality, that stuff doesn’t need to be brand new. Dorms are a transition. You’ll be helping the environment by reusing items. And there may be family things you can use, which is a connection to home, like the cupcake pans you used to use while baking with your Grandma.
t. You don’t need to worry about getting really high quality, long lasting items. This puts les

4.    Bring a list. Once you’ve decided what you need to get, write it all down. Put the list in your wallet so you always have it with you.  Then when you’re out and you see a good deal on something, you’ll know if you really need it. It’s easy to go overboard when shopping for your dorm, but stick to that list and you’ll have a great room.

Other Storage Areas

I’ve talked a lot about how to organize and maintain storage areas, like a closet. You’re in and out of it more often than other areas where you store belongings. Now I want to focus on the areas that you don’t frequent as much, but have just as much, if not more storage.

The garage, attic, basement, crawl space and linen closet can all be go-to places to store seasonal, old and extra stuff. It can be difficult to remember where something is when you haven’t seen or used it in months, even years.
Make the most of your storage space by organizing it so you don’t dread having to search for something. Bins can be a lifesaver, and they are stackable, too. Label them in detail about what the contents are inside. If they’re in a damp place, make sure to put a lid on it to keep out the mold.

Pet Care

They’re your best friends, and greet you at the door when you come home after a long day. No matter what anyone else says about his or her dog, yours is better! Doesn’t matter how, they’re just better. You want to pamper them, so here are some tips that will put your pet first:

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Toys: Let’s face it, their toys can be anywhere at any point in time. Have one bin or basket for all their toys; at the end of the day, round them all up.

Food: ALWAYS have an extra stash of food that could last a few days. You never know if there will be an emergency, or you have to leave for a couple days. If you’re gone for longer, it gives you enough time to make arrangements and not worry about your baby back home.

Playtime: If you’re gone all day at work, your pets are going to want some of your time. Schedule time to Go for a walk, and channel their energy so they’re tuckered out when it’s finally bedtime.

Things you need when leaving the house: You’ll need to take some things with you whether you’re just going for a walk or you’re going to the vet. Bring a carrier; some form of identification for your pet (collar or tag on carrier); a soft towel, blanket or a toy they can snuggle up against; a leash; food and water.

Organizing the Creative Space

With a creative mind comes a creative mess. You may know where everything is, or at least most of it, but your space could be a little cluttered.
To be creative, you need inspiration, and there’s no better way to get it than having things out that inspire you - whether magazine snippets, quotes, fabric scraps, or color swatches. And then there are the supplies! Your space may be a little overwhelming, but here are some tips to get it under control, while still allowing for inspiration.
1.    Categorize by themes You pick the themes! Depending on your style and what inspires you, it will be a rejuvenating process. This in itself can be a project, but it can get more ideas spinning if you find things you haven’t seen in awhile.

2.    Put supplies of similar nature with each other This means putting all your different kinds of papers, drawing utensils, fabrics and patterns, jewelry, and other tools together.

3.    Make inspiration boards This goes along with number one and creating themes. You can hang these boards up around your space to get a quick peak at inspiration when you need it.

4.    File it on your computer Decide if there are things you don’t really need to keep, and take a picture of it. Then, you can file your inspirational photos on your computer. You can also post the pictures on Pinterest. Hint: there’s an option to create a “secret board” on Pinterest that only you can see.

Makeup Your Makeup Routine

If you’re rushing out the door and still feeling undone, then perhaps it’s time to go through your makeup process. Having a go-to look will make the process smoother, especially once you’ve mastered it and can do it really fast. Decide the amount of makeup and how dramatic you like it to be so you’re comfortable throughout the day.
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Makeup products have an expiration date, usually listed on the packaging, if not the product itself. It’s a white picture of an open container. It’ll say something like 6M inside it, which means it’s good for 6 months after you’ve opened it. If you can’t even remember when you opened it, then it’s definitely time to toss. Here are my ideas on keeping track of it all.

Good makeup brushes can last forever as long as you take care of them. Store them in a cup, handle down, so the bristles won’t be bent or damaged. Brushes should be cleaned after 2-3 uses and deep conditioned every couple of weeks. Creating a routine will ensure their longevity and prevent the spread of bacteria to your face.

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