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Back to School Boot Camp

Organization is the key for avoiding stressful school mornings.  To help you get “in shape” for the start of school we’re going to share our favorite tips to get Back to School Organized

Tip #1-Pick out school outfits for the week…Sunday is the perfect day to do this.  Have children stack shirts & shorts together so they can dress themselves.  This photo has two great ways to display the clothes (hanging shelves or labeled hangers), pick the one that fits your space the best.  Busy moms and dads may also find this tip helpful!!

clothes for week

Tip #2-Create a home file with a slot for each subject; color code the tabs to match with any folders used for each class.  Not only does this system give kids a place to unload weekly papers, it also helps them organize reference materials as the year changes.  You can even make one file labeled “papers for mom and dad”. These inexpensive creates come in lots of colors so let your kids pick their favorite one.

Home File - Tip 2

Tip #3-Create a snack bin in your pantry for the kids.  Place bins on a low shelf that they can reach and be sure to bag up snacks in healthy portion sizes.  You can even have the kids help, so they know what is available when they are hungry.  This is a great habit to get into as it makes packing lunches so much easier.

Snacks

Tip #4-Hang a calendar in a centrally located place in your home.  The kitchen refrigerator often works well or anywhere that is frequently accessed and visible to all family members.  Select a colored pen or marker for each family member.  Attach a magnetic strip to the pen/marker, so they don’t get lost.  record each family members important events on the calendar: practices, games, recitals, appointments, birthday parties, tests/projects due dates, etc.  This way you can keep your busy family activities scheduled.

calendar

Tip #5-Getting ready the night before will help make for calm mornings, less stress and fewer forgotten items.  Some things to do the night before:

  • Pack lunches
  • Pick out school clothes (if you didn’t follow Tip #1)
  • Gather sports/dance/other activity items needed for the next day
  • When homework is completed, put it directly into backpacks
  • Put backpacks in the car or at the front door
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Starting things off RIGHT!

We thought that we would start our blog with our absolute favorite and most Purposeful organizational strategy! How is that for a ringing endorsement? It is important to know that not only do we ALWAYS recommend this strategy to our clients but we practice it ourselves.  We say “practice” because it doesn’t come naturally-nope, not even to Professional Organizers.  Lastly, this is not rocket science but it definitely changes your life and way of doing things.  If you are a procrastinator buckle up!

Two-Minute Rule:

You should NOT put off anything that takes you less than 2-minutes to do

Remember, we told you it wasn’t rocket science.  Here is why we recommend it: If you put something down after you’ve picked it up and determined what you need to do with it, you’ll just have to re-remember it later.  This means that when you come across the item in the future, you will have to repeat that process again.  That is a waste of your time, maybe just a couple minutes but these minutes add up.  So once you pick it up and determine that it will take you less than two minutes to deal with it, DO IT THEN.

Here are a couple ways to think about this rule:

  • Sorting mail:  “batch your tasks.  This means when you sort your mail, place anything that will take more than 2 minutes to deal with in an “action” bin.  Put junk mail in your recycle bin. Resolve any action that takes less than 2 minutes to deal with, then file accordingly after completion.  Set aside time during the week to resolve any items in your “action” bin.
  • Laundry-Take piles directly to designated rooms upon folding.  Put away-it really doesn’t take that long to put laundry away, might be a bit longer than 2 minutes, but then it is done.
  • Donations/Returns-If you have items to donate or return to the store, put them directly in your car.  No sense in taking them from one room in the house, to another, then eventually to your car.  Why touch it and think about it multiple times? Why increase the chances of forgetting about it? We recommend that you keep a crate or bin in the car for these items.