Thursday, November 29, 2007

Mistakes thru Zen

The power of this exercise has been great! (for the first half click here)
I have learned much from reading quotes from so many different people. It's all been good for me.

Without further adieu ......

Mistakes: "Making a mistake is no reason for living a mistake,"
my mom.

Nobility: "It is nobler to declare oneself wrong than to insist on being right - especially when one is right," Friedrich Nietzsche

Opportunity: "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work," Thomas A. Edison

Politics: "Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first," Ronald Reagan

Questions: "Despite my thirty years of research into the feminine soul, I have not been able to answer... the great question that has never been answered: what does a woman want?" Sigmund Freud

Reputation: "You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do," Henry Ford

Sex: "No matter what a woman looks like, if she's confident, she's sexy," Paris Hilton

Tenacity: "When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on," Franklin D. Roosevelt

Universe: "We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something very special," Stephen Hawking

Vices: "It has been my experience that folks who have no vices have very few virtues," Abraham Lincoln

Wisdom: "Wisdom outweighs any wealth," Sophocles

eXperience: "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards," Vernon Sanders Law

Yourself: "It is not fair to ask of others what you are unwilling to do yourself," Eleanor Roosevelt

Zen: "Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen," John Steinbeck

WOW! That was fun.

Pick out three 3 letters, then a word, find your quotes.
What are your quotes?
(I triple-dog-dare you to post your ABC quotes on your blog)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Art thru Laughter

It's cold outside.
I'm not feeling 100%.
So, as I begin to ponder ..........

Art: "Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up," Pablo Picasso

Balance: "I've learned that you can't have everything and do everything at the same time," Oprah Winfrey

Character: "When the character of a man is not clear to you, look at his friends," Japanese Proverb

Discovery: "The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not 'Eureka!' (I found it!) but 'That's funny ...'" Isaac Asimov

Energy: "Energy and persistence conquer all things,"
Benjamin Franklin

Friendship: "The only way to have a friend is to be one,"
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Giving: "We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give," Sir Winston Churchill

Honesty: "Level with your child by being honest. Nobody spots a phony quicker than a child," Mary MacCracken

Imagination: "Imagination is more important than knowledge," Albert Einstein

Journalism: "It's amazing that the amount of news that happens in the world every day always just exactly fits the newspaper,"
Jerry Seinfeld

Kindness: "No Act of Kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted," Aesop

Laughter: "You cannot be mad at somebody who makes you laugh - it's as simple as that," Jay Leno

I'm feeling much better now.
(yes, I will complete the ABCs)

How do you get out of a funk?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Making Space Appear

Sometimes the space you want is right there in front of you.
Finding it can be tricky if you are only looking at the problem and feeling the frustration caused by only seeing the problem.

"Anne" was frustrated with her laundry room. Her kids would enter from the garage, plop down their bags, shoes and coats on the floor leaving no where to walk. Let alone get to the laundry. Anne was getting a new washer and dryer and wanted the laundry room to be more organized.

I encouraged Anne to purchase a stackable washer and dryer set. These not only save space, they also use less water to wash, spin dry the clothes better, which results in energy savings in drying. Anne also had enough shelving to use, the shelves just needed to be rearranged. She liked the plan so much, Anne started the clean-up before I arrived (yeah!).

Since the shelving was going to be removed and changed, painting the laundry room was going to be needed. Deciding to go with a fun blue color to brighten it up a bit. Once the painting was done, the shelving was cleaned up and reinstalled.

The only materials purchased were a gallon of paint, a roller and paint brush (and the new washer and dryer, but I didn't bring those). After the appliances were delivered I the room looked great! The kids had places for their shoes and bookbags. Coats were hanging on little hooks.

Anne did not have to step over her kid's afterschool pile any more.
The extra space she needed was right before her eyes.

Look around your home.
There are ways to make your space work better for you.

What color is your laundry room?

Monday, November 26, 2007

Pat Boone vs. Ozzy Osbourne

I'm in a post holiday, "I don't feel like working" mode........

Funniest thing happened this weekend. I was listening to Yahoo Music Jukebox while painting a room, and decided to listen to something different. I chose the Cover Artists station.

All was going great.
Learned a few songs I like are truly covers, as well as, lots of new versions of great songs.
Really cool stuff ....... until .......

Pat Boone
Ozzy Osbourne's
Crazy Train"

What the?!
I just busted out laughing!
I wanted to run and skip through the song, though like a bad car accident, I had to stay and listen. It was painfully HYSTERICAL!!!!

You can listen to Pat's version (here).
Ozzy's truly classic version (here)

I had an amazing weekend in so many ways.
..... blah, blah, blah ... I know, get back to work.

What made you laugh recently?

Friday, November 23, 2007

Oprah Hoarders

Recently, Oprah had a 2-part show on Hoarders.

From closets overflowing with unworn clothes to boxes brimming with crafts and knickknacks, experts estimate that nearly 6 million Americans have a hoarding problem that affects their quality of life. But what if you had so much stuff, just the trash weighed 75 tons? To put it in perspective, it would take 15 huge dumpsters to hold that much trash. Imagine this amount of junk taking up every room, every hallway and every inch of space in your home.

It was interesting to watch and see how this family was helped. My business is helping people in this situation. Not only helping them remove clutter, but also encourage them to make changes to avoid the accumulation of stuff.

Sharyn felt terrible about her home, uncomfortable showing the home on camera and downright disgusted in her living conditions. Her kids were emotionally drained when walking through the home, shocked at the state their parents were living.

"What do you want from this house?"
A very similar question that I ask all clients before starting a project. Forcing a change on someone is far more effective if you know what their objectives are. In this case:
Peace, Harmony, Clean - a place to celebrate family & friends.

During the sorting of items, Sharyn became extremely overwhelmed.
It is important to allow her to acknowledge her feelings, take a breath and regroup. Then get right back on task. Soon, Sharyn was finding joy as long lost items were found. This too is good because is brings up missing memories, hopefully lending to the thought: Hmmm, if I keep my place picked up, then I will be able to find things.

With the holiday season, you will be spending time with your family and friends. If it has been a few years since you have been invited into a loved one's home, please, PLEASE find a way to weasel your way into their home and check it out. Gather up your family and friends and help those in need.

No one should have negative feelings about their home.

Who have you not visited in 3 years that you should?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Getting Kids Organized

Time for ME to get my house organized.

Yes ... My home does gets out of hand like many people.

Today's project: My basement

My boys have their Imaginext constantly set up and transforming into ever changing "islands" ruled by the "World Fairy," where you can barter for items, dinosaurs destroy fortresses and in the end there is happiness in the world.

There's also the ever popular washer box (the dryer box was trashed a few weeks ago) which has been apart of many hours of creative games.

The basement is where my boys can play as they wish, though enough is enough, time for them to clean-up. When it is time to clean up, I do not make the general statement, "Boys, go pick up the basement or your rooms." Kids lose the meaning of this quickly. Your goal is to get them to clean their rooms and you need to explain this to them.

For the basement project, I told my boys that I want to vacuum the basement rugs. If anything is not put away, it will be sucked up and thrown away. This explains to them the consequences of not completing the task.

Kids will naturally organize stuff, if they know where to put things. Look at their classrooms at school. Classrooms of kids can keep all the paper, pencils, crayons, books, scissors, chairs and even classroom libraries are organized.

The kids in your home can be organized too!
Explain the task and let them work.
The first couple times you may have to toss a toys or two.
They will catch on and they will learn to be organized.
And you will have tidy bedrooms and play areas again.

When was the last time you just listened to your kids imaginative play? What story line did they create?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Da Doo Ron Ron

I met her on a Monday and my heart stood still
Da doo ron ron ron, da doo ron ron ron
Someboy told me that her name was Jill
Da doo ron ron ron, da doo ron ron ron

... I cannot get this song out of my head!!
Shawn Cassidy's, "Da Doo Ron Ron."

So, then I start thinking about all my other great (uh, maybe not great), first albums. Music has always been HUGE in my life.

Cheesy 70's teen idols, Classic Rock when it was just Rock: Queen, Eagles, Seger, AC/DC, KISS!! Then on to the 80's: Van Halen, U2, GNR, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, so many more....

I listened to music constantly growing up.
Still do to this day.
I know soooo many lyrics.

For now though, I cannot get out:
Ya, he looked so fine
Ya, I'll make her mine
And when I walked her home
Da doo ron ron ron
Da doo ron ron....

Maybe I'll get a radio station to play some Shaun Cassidy
to save me from insanity!!

What song from your first album do you remember?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Time to Vote

I NEED YOUR VOTE for Best Organizing Blog!!

Voting for the 2008 Los Angeles Organizing Awards is open to the public and is NOT limited to LA businesses.

To read the press release about this event (here)
To cast your vote for "I Organize You Blog" in the Best Organizing Website or Blog (VOTE HERE)

They are not making this easy for you to vote.
You have to enter your email, then you go directly to the ballot.
You have to enter "I Organize You Blog" into the Best Blog category (11th down the list).
Then opt out of the distribution lists.

The process is quick, less than a minute.

Voting ends December 31, 2007. One vote per email address.

Award recipients will be announced at the dinner event. The Awards are a celebration and culmination of national "Get Organized Month," to be held in January.

C'mon family, friends, clients and fans ... Rally together and vote for "I Organize You!"

Did you vote?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Rainbow Closet

A closet is a small and enclosed space, a cabinet, or a cupboard in a house or building used for general storage or hanging clothes. A closet for food storage is usually referred to as a pantry.

Well, that's how Wikipedia defines "closet." I did not know that a water closet (WC) is not a storage closet but a flush toilet (Britsh English definition) ... huh, proves you can learn something everyday.

There are all kinds of ways to use and organize closets. Recently a client, "Mary" asked me to help get her brand new closet organized.

She had many beautiful outfits stored in luggage and storage bags.

Mary had to dig through them to find the item she wanted. Her new closet was perfect for hanging this beautiful and heavy garments.

Mary treated herself to some great new non-slip hangers. Most of the outfits had three pieces to each: scarf, top, pants. The hangers were sturdy enough for all three items. As I placed them in the closet I grouped them by color, making it easy for Mary to go to the appropriate color she wanted to wear that day. It looked really cool when the project was completed. Kinda like a RAINBOW!

How cool would it be to have a rainbow of colors greeting you in your closet every day? Mary has lots of room to place more of her other clothes and accessories. Now she feels inspired to continue working on getting her closet organized.

How would you describe your closet?

Friday, November 09, 2007

Mission Organization

Many of my clients have told me about a TV show, Mission: Organization on HGTV. I don't watch that much TV, so I DVR'd (it's a verb now) the show and finally sat down and watched it.

It is exactly what I do
... without an unlimited budget.
The transformations are awesome!

Watching the show made me think,
"I need to be on TV!"

How would my show be different? You would see me:

1. Hanging the ceiling racks, cutting shelving, loading dumpsters, fixing kid's bikes and client's vacuums (not some "expert" guys).
2. Getting my clients to laugh and joke about the stuff we've discovered.
3. Getting dirty (not quite like "Dirty Jobs") and sweaty working my butt off.
4. Create a connection to my clients by relating a personal story from my life to what they are dealing with in their life.
5. Working within the means of my clients, demonstrating that YOU can get organized in your home on a budget.

The Mission: Organization projects are fantastic - no doubt.
Though, most people do not have the time to spend 3-4 days organizing their garage or home office. Let alone the 1000's of dollars to pimp out their space.

My projects would target one day to plan, one day to implement. Done.
Kinda like the "Wham. Bam. Thank you ma'am!" to getting organized. (yeah, a Rosemarism)

C'mon ... a TV show would be fantastic!
Kinda like Rachael Ray with a hammer drill and a stud finder.

What would we title the show?

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I'm a Club Sandwich

Time to lighten the topic a bit with a fun, harmless quiz.

I don't think I eat big or view myself as high maintenance.
I will agree I know what I want.

You Are a Club Sandwich

You are have a big personality. It's hard for anyone to ignore you! You dream big. You think big. And you eat big.
Some people consider you high maintenance, but you just know what you want... and when you want it.

Your best friend: The Tuna Fish Sandwich

Your mortal enemy: The Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich

What kind of sandwich are you?

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Order in Chaos

"Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line ... Nature exhibits not simply a higher degree but an altogether different level of complexity". Benoit Mandelbrot

The Mandelbrot Set is infinitely complex though generated from a simple equation involving complex numbers.
(OK, how many are completely lost? Please bear with this Rocket Scientist)

Fractal geometry = rough, fragmented, complex geometric shapes
Complex numbers = meet me at Panera's and I'll explain
Simple equation = Z = Z^2 + C (This explanation may require beers)

ANYWAY....What does this have to do with getting organized?!?

If you look around you there may appear to be chaos, where likely there is order. When working with clients, I notice that usually they know where things are. They have a system or method to their madness. It is when control is lost, their feelings begin to turn negative toward themselves, then I am asked to step in and help.

Chaos exists in Nature and Math, which gives us clouds, lighting bolts and really cool images. These are all beautiful results from chaos.
Chaos is good. Really GOOD!

Without chaos, life would be boring.

Look around you at the chaos in your life. Is there order to it?
Appreciate the beauty of chaos and have fun.
If you are struggling, then get a grip, take charge
and bring in some order.

Give us an example of good chaos.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Good = me
The Bad = my ex-husband
The Ugly = Judicial system

I had to go to court yesterday, because The Bad filed me in Contempt of Court for me taking my boys to a Cub Scout Pack meeting and soccer games during their father's parenting time. Note: He refused to take the boys to these activities, so I did.

I was not found in Contempt. A positive outcome.

I did have to give up my only weekend with my boys this month to The Bad for "make-up parenting time." Only for The Bad to cancel one of his weekends for a vacation.

First The Bad wants "make up" time, then cancels one of his own weekends?? In the end, my boys and I will have a weekend together. Another positive.

The Ugly cannot do anything when a self centered parent treats his children as possessions."It's my parenting time and I want the boys here," is what I hear very often from The Bad. No regard for what the boys want. Jacob wants to play soccer, The Bad says he can't because it takes away from his parenting time. Isn't going to soccer games part of parenting time?

The Ugly has told The Bad he must take the boys to their activities. This releases me from being responsible for activities during The Bad's weekends. Also, challenges The Bad to step it up and be a parent and participate. Both positives.

Our divorce should not effect the boys activities.
I am passionate about my boys. I want the best for them.
Spending Saturdays at soccerfields and weeknights in cubscout activites are not my first choices for myself of things to do. Though I would NOT trade them for the world because I love and support Matthew and Jacob.

It is sad to hear the comments my boys make about their father.
I just listen, hug them and tell them I love them.
I am an amazing mother that is willing to push The Ugly to the point of contempt to defend what is good and right.

Gonna jump off my soapbox now.
No school today, so the boys and I are going to have some fun.
And yeah ... soccer practice tonight.

What have you stood up to defend?