With every new year, I get the urge to get organized and I have found some pretty cool tools that help make my manic life a little less manic and more managed. Take a look at the cool stuff I found and get organized with me. It feels great to do so!
For The Home:
Get rid of stuff that you haven't used for a year.
*interDesign Wallmount Mail Center ($19.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond) -- For outgoing mail or for mail that belongs to other family members, I like the Wallmount Mail Center because it holds the mail and everyone's keys. Now that we have a driving teenager, we have more keys and he is also starting to get a lot more mail from prospective colleges. So our key and mail clutter has recently increased making this get organized piece a helpful station in our home. It also comes with a cork board, so family messages can be left there if needed.
Home Accents "Stuff" Wicker Baskets (prices range, example - $28.99 for medium sized basket at Hobby Lobby stores) -- Sometimes you just need a place for your family members to place their stuff, so I think these dark brown cloth lined wicker baskets are attractive and useful. I also got a kick out of the nicely labeled "stuff" sign that comes on each one, so I bought several different sizes of these baskets and they look nice with our warm toned home decor. One box houses my kids' textbooks and another holds my husband's various items that he like to have handy like his eye drops, wallet and more.
For the Home Office
1 touch paper rule, touch every piece of mail/paper once and then file it, record it, discard it, shred it or recycle it.
*CG Publishing Forgot Your Password? Handbook ($4.99 at Hallmark Gift Stores) -- I don't know about you, but I feel overwhelmed with the amount of passwords that we have in our life. And with the unsettling hacking that has been occurring (think Target) it is crucial to create elaborate passwords, but that makes it even harder to remember. So I like this handy little book that houses user names, passwords and websites all in one easy to carry little notebook. Do use caution however. If you leave it at home, lock it up in a safe in case your home is robbed and if you carry it in your purse, be extra careful. I avoid carrying it in my purse just to be extra cautious.
*Patterened Best Box in 2014 or 2013 ($3.99 each at The Container Store) -- You can save $4 and make these storage boxes yourself, but I love how they look and I dig the size. These attractive and functional boxes are perfect for storing the years taxes, school projects, memories and more. A simple, but very clever idea and product.
For the Laundry Room
Fold clothes the minute they come out of the dryer...at the dryer...and put away immediately.
*Real Simple Iron Caddy & Board Holder ($14.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond) -- If you are like me and can't stand a loose iron and ironing board that leans up against the wall, try this handy contraption. I like this particular one because it can either be mounted on the wall or it can hang over the door. Plus it has a built-in shelf that holds spray bottles, too.
For Her Bathroom
Clean out makeup drawer every three months to cut clutter and for health reasons.
*GlamCaddy Rotating Organizer ($29.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond) - This cool cosmetics caddy holds up to 200 items that include nail polish, makeup brushes, foundation and more. If you are an exterior organizer that means you like your items out where you can see them, so this can sit nicely on your makeup counter. If you are an internal organizer, then you like your stuff hidden and nicely put away and this caddy stores easily under your bathroom sink, so it works for everyone. I love mine.
*Kestrel Grid Nail Care Case ($48 at www.kestrelbags.com and at Anthropologie stores) -- One cosmetic item that I find difficult to travel with is my manicure set, so I wanted to include this nail organization kit that can also be used to store your nail products in your bathroom. I like that the top unzips to a removable, four-part partition that holds four nail lacquers, plus an elastic holder is included to store travel-size implements. The attractive case is fully lined with easy-to-wipe coated black surface.
For the Kitchen
Clean as you cook!
*Knock Knock All Out Of Grocery Store Pad ($7 for a pad of 60 sheets) -- I like this handy pad because the entire family can simply check off an item that we run out of, so it is recorded, purchased and not purchased twice (taking up much needed pantry) space because we duplicated. It comes with a magnet on the back so stick it on the fridge and tell the family to participate in this handy organization tool. I actually purchased mine for $6.99 at the It'Sugar store in Tempe Marketplace, but you can also order this online at www.knockknockstuff.com.
*Metaltex Galileo Kitchen Pot Lids Holder ($19.99 at The Container Store) -- I can't stand loose pot lids because they turn into piled clutter and are noisy to sort through, so I was happy to find this product that is a hanging kitchen storage unit with no assembly or tools required for set up. Simply hang inside your cabinet door to hold three different sized lids at a time. This is handy and opens up much needed cabinet space for all of your pots and pans.
*Copco Non-Skid Shelf Organizer ($5.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond) -- For your sea of spices that you want to find quickly when you are in the middle of a recipe, try this storage unit that is multi-leveled so you can see your different spices in one glance. Organize the spice containers alphabetically for even easier access.
For My On The Go Life
For every new item brought in, discard or donate an item to get one out.
* Mophie Helium rechargeable iPhone case ($80 at Verizon stores) - Since my life is in my smart phone, the best get organized tool that I have found is my new rechargeable phone case, the Mophie. When my phone battery dies while I'm out and about, there goes my calendar, my to do list and my contact with my kids....the most crucial thing. I absolutely love it because once my battery starts to go, I simply turn the case on and it instantly recharges my phone. I no longer worry about my phone battery dying when I'm out and about and need to stay in contact with my family.
*Trader Joe's Big Blue Bags ($6.99 at the Trader Joe's stores) - If you are looking for an environmentally friendly big bag that will truly keep foods frozen for up to two hours (crucial here in Phoenix) check out the big blue Trader Joe's bags. I like this bag because I always keep it in my car for groceries and I keep coupons for all kinds of stores zipped up inside. That way I never forget my money saving coupons, have my grocery bag on hand that keeps food frozen and I am being earth-friendly.
* Tantrum Handbags - Valley mom of twins, Jessica Marriott has invented the smart Tantrum Handbags line and they feature, what Jessica calls, ten "pockets inside with purpose" that are various sizes and depths, all with elastic closures to hold items secure inside. One smart feature is a magnetic key holder that connects to a keychain, keeping your keys within easy reach at all times. The bag closure itself is also magnetic, so it is perfect for fishing out items while in your car, in a meeting or holding a child in one hand. The Tantrum purses work very well, but they are expensive and start at $275 at http://www.tantrumbags.com. The styles and high quality material that the Tantrum purses are made of rival designer lines like Michael Kors and Coach, which is one reason why they are so pricy. I also wanted to share this line because it is cool that the designer is a local Valley mom.
So that concludes my favorite 2014 great get organized tools for now. I'm sure I will be looking for more as I dive into my Spring cleaning soon. What are your favorite organization tips and tools? Share in the comments section and be sure to check out my blog at www.managedmoms.com for more clutter cutting advice as well as recipes, parenting talk, beauty news and more. Happy get organized season!