Friday, December 28, 2007

Beer in a Martini Glass

I'm Roadtriping in Chicago, so I thought I would share this story.

A girlfriend said she heard that:
"men are intimidated by women who drink beer."
I laughed, never have heard such a thing.

While I waiting to meet her at a local pub, I ordered a beer and asked the bartender to give me a martini glass. He looked at me quite odd (happens often, I do crazy stuff often) and handed me a martini glass. When my friend showed up, she busted out laughing. Ever since then, I drink my beers out of a martini glass. It is much more fun than drinking out of those big ol' mugs. Plus, it just feels sexy.

And when it comes down to it, doesn't everyone just want to have fun and feel sexy?
I challenge you: Next time you go out and order a beer, ask for a martini glass.

How does drinking a beer out of a martini glass make you feel?

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Road Trip!


I am so thankful.
One beauty of divorce is that I get time away from my boys. Of course I miss them, though time to do what I wish is precious.

So, the road trip in order was just decided yesterday and I have no idea what is going to happen today or when I will be back (sometime before January 2nd, 6pm). Damn, that's just awesome!!

Heading to Chicago to visit friends from my Guatemala trip. According to Allie, I should be ready for all sorts of "frolicking." Frolicking?! Bring it on!! Indoor/outdoor fun, parties, gym, ice skating, extending roadtrip to Iowa? are a few things she mentioned to me. BRING IT ON!!

Life is sweet and tasty,
best enjoyed through experience and laughter.
Perhaps I will share some stories with you later.
Then again, a smile on my face always keeps people guessing.

Where was your last roadtrip?
(Christmas returns does not qualify)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Blog Love

The holiday season is over.

We can all get our homes back to looking normal and move on to the New Year.

This morning I woke up to find some Blog Love sent my way.

Say What?! is a great blog for browsing when you need a giggle in your day. It is a collection of signs that make you wonder. I sent Lorraine a few signs. She posted this one today.

My son, Matthew, had a medical test recently (he's healthy, just an evaluation) and when I came across this I just started laughing. Perhaps it is just me, but I always do my best. Settling for "very good" just doesn't cut it.

Check out Say What?! and keep your eyes out for curious signs.
Thank you Lorraine for passing on some love. Looking forward to seeing which of my Australian road signs you post in the future.

What is level of customer service do you expect at a hospital?

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Room of Doom

I remember when the PC game, Doom, first came out. It was one of the original first person games and I became addicted to it. Working at Ford at the time, a group of us talked about strategies to defeat the evil monsters and conquer the boss. We even began created our own games, creating our workplace in the know, engineering geeks.

"The room of doom," is what "Pat" nicknamed her utility room in her basement. An area where she did laundry, stored pantry items, summer supplies, keepsake items and boxes & bags of stuff she didn't quite find a spot for in her home.

We only had 1 hour before I had to leave and she doubted if we could make any difference in this area. Ooh, a challenge.

We started making a pile of stuff to be placed upstairs in her kitchen and bedrooms. Pantry items were placed in a pantry closet. Summer items were stored in the cabinets that originally were empty. A bag of items was collected for donation. Finally, we had a bag of stuff to be trashed.

Pat was amazed at how great the room looked and felt in just 1 hour.
"It's no longer the room of doom. I can work in here and smile now."

I challenge you to pick a room and focus on getting it organized.

You can do it. You will feel better.

What game (board, PC or game system) do you love to play?

Friday, December 21, 2007

Honor Your Memories

"Terry" admits she get overwhelmed in attempting to stay organized. Like many of us, the dramas of life can take over and the last thing on your list of things to care for is yourself.

Terry had been hanging on to a gift certificate for my services for 11 months. The certificate made her feel good when she received it and if she used it, Terry felt it would be gone. Finally, she broke down and we met.

We talked a bit about her goals. I gave her some ideas about managing tasks to get and stay organized. Then she told me about a craft box in her attic.

This craft box was her mother's. Terry cherished this box of craft supplies. The thing is, Terry's mother passed away 11 years ago. Yes, 11 years this box sat in her attic collecting dust and funk.

She finally decided that the time had come to part with it. Terry told me she believed,

"If you release what is holding you back, good will come back."

A woman came to Terry's home from Freecycle to pick up her mother's craft box. The next week, there was a knock on Terry's front door.

The woman had returned to give Terry this Christmas display for her home. Made only from the items found in the gifted box. Terry immediately recognized certain parts of the arrangement that her mother decorated with. Needless to say, Terry was beside herself with joy and happiness. I got the chills when she told me the story.

Memories of a past loved one are good. They should be honored since they played a loving role in your life. Though if you have them cramped in a dusty, funky smelling old box in your attic, is that really a positive way to remember them?

If you are not enjoying them, perhaps it is time to part with them.
Another person will find joy in the items you give.
........ And good will come back to you.

What's in your attic?

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Toledo's Own Rocket Scientist on WTOL

Here's the long awaiting clip of me on CBS-WTOL

This is what WTOL stated:

Get Organized!: We found a former rocket scientist who's now a professional organizer. We're looking for the messiest homes and the home owners who need help getting organized. Send us your pictures to

Who do you want to Get Organized?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Organized Solutions Meets BlogsMonroe

Exciting news today!
I Organize You has joined BlogsMonroe.

BlogsMonroe, a Monroe County (Michigan) community of bloggers focused on topics ranging from food to fishing, music to musings. Whatever your interest, you can find it here.
Same posts found here will be found on BlogsMonroe.
Don't worry.
I Organize You will remain here at this address.

BlogsMonroe has a great collection of interesting blogs on a variety of topics. At this time, there are 37 blogs listed each devoted to a topic. My topic is organizing stories and tips. (surprised?)

Which blog on BlogsMonroe did you find most interesting?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I Believe in YOU

With almost two weeks left in the amazing year of 2007, take the time to begin 2008 with a bit less clutter. These tips I found should take about 10-15 minutes each. The impact on how your home will feel is wonderful.

1) Fridge and Pantry. Start out the New Year fresh by cleaning out your fridge and pantry. Be sure to toss or donate all food that you have not used in the last six months. If you haven't used it in that time frame, you're not going to. Challenge yourself to use all of the food in your freezer that is older than two months old. Get rid of all of your old herbs and spices. Just because your spice rack has a bottle labeled cardamom, it doesn't mean you need it.

2) Linen Closet. Go through your linen closet. This is a perfect time of the year to make donations. Animal shelters especially will take old sheets, towels and blankets. Keep a maximum of 3 sets of sheets per bed. For a guest bed, only one set is really needed. There's no reason to keep extra mattress pads, dust ruffles, etc. One each per bed is plenty.

3) Publications. It's time to toss all publications, newsletters, magazines, newspapers from 2006 and older. Resist the urge to say, "but I might need it or have to refer back to it." The bottom line is, you won't and you will continue to have more arrive and the pile will just get larger.

4) Kids. If you have children, now is the time to help them go through their rooms and closets. Explain that it's important to toss or donate things they no longer love or play with. Besides, they will be getting more stuff.

5) Liquor. This is the perfect time to go through your liquor stock. (no, this is not my stash) Anything that is opened shouldn't be kept any more than a year or two. Colorings, flavors and other additives begin to break down as soon as they are exposed to oxygen. If you do entertain on a regular basis, keep a basic bar available with red and white wine and a few select bottles you might think you will need--such as vodka, whiskey and tequila. If you don't know anyone who drinks gin for instance, don't buy gin. There's no reason to keep something around, just in case. Same goes for your bar equipment. Keep only the basics that you actually use, not what you think you might.

6) Television. Do you tape TV shows to watch later using your VCR or video recorder system? It's probably time to toss or delete some of them. If you really need to know what happened, almost all shows have written recaps available online that you can read to get caught up. There is always YouTube.

7) Mental Clutter. The most important things to toss at year's end are any preconceptions and limiting ideas you may have. If you see yourself as always being overwhelmed and in a state of constant crisis or chaos, you will be. If you always feel that you are behind the eight ball, it's time to move the ball! Your confidence and positive attitude are your most valuable assets. Before you can have a clean home and an organized life, you must believe that you can.

Never forget that being organized means having your life functioning in an efficient manner. It's not about having your stuff in perfectly matching, color-coordinated boxes. (My home can attest to that, and I'm a professional) It's about having your things in a place where you can find and easily access them. It's about having systems in place that allow us to pay our bills when they are due, make it to appointments on time and prioritize our obligations in a way that best benefits yourself and your family.

13 days until the New Year ... You can do it!!
Grab some bags and boxes and conquer one of these tasks.
I'm sorting through my liquor: Gin, Southern Comfort, Tequila, various flavorings.....GONE! I have no idea how why I have them?

What ancient liquor did you find in your home?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Same Old Lang Syne Goodbye

Dan Fogelberg, the singer and songwriter whose hits "Leader of the Band" and "Same Old Lang Syne" helped define the soft-rock era, died Sunday at his home in Maine after battling prostate cancer. He was 56.

Can't say I was a huge Fogelberg fan, though "Same Old Lang Syne" has a special spot in my heart. Just one of those songs that triggers a memory of a dear friend that I will forever be grateful. He pulled me through a very difficult time and helped me find the amazing woman that I am. He was the first person I shared my business idea, he encouraged me to start my business and to stick with it.

The power of a song is amazing to me. I hear many songs and I can recall events that were going on in my life. Thank you to all the artists out there making memories and connections for us all to enjoy. My condolences to the Fogelberg family.

What song makes you remember an old friend?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

15 Minute Organizing Tasks

OK, I've posted 10 minute tasks in the past.
Let's say you have a bit more time.....

One challenge to getting organized is finding the time to do so. We all live busy, fast paced lives. Finding a free moment is difficult. I found this list of tasks you can complete in 15 minutes or less. Pick a task. Set your timer. And GO!

1. Clear the contents of one drawer in your kitchen, while dinner is cooking. We all have at least one junk drawer. Remove all of the contents of the drawer and sort into categories. Everything that does not belong in the kitchen can go into a box or basket to be put in its proper place. Toss the extras of things like twist ties. Keep only one sheet of them and toss the rest, after all, we get more every time we open a box of trash bags. You are ready to load the `kitchen only' items back into the drawer.

2. Take those kitchen junk drawer items to their proper home. Remember that basket or box of goodies that you pulled out of the kitchen junk drawer the day before? In less than fifteen minutes, you can have those items back in the areas where they belong. Chances are there really aren't that many items to go back into the right area. Taking that fifteen minutes to put these items where they belong eliminates another pile to be dealt with later.

3. Sort through that pile of mail. We all find that the mail gets away from us occasionally. It usually doesn't take much for that to happen, when your time is so filled up with activities and life. Start by tossing all of the ads and catalogs into the recycle bin. Take all of those credit card offers straight to the shredder. Now you can separate the remaining mail into categories such as bills, correspondence, charitable organization requests and so forth.

4. Return those runaway DVD's to their home. We all sometimes have a lapse when it comes to putting DVD's away. It may seem ever so much easier to leave them on the shelf above or below the player even when we change out the selection.

5. Fold a load of laundry. You started a load of wash before heading out the door to work. When you get home from work, put the clean load of wash into the dryer. After dinner, when you sit to watch your favorite TV show you will be able to fold that load of clothes that is now dry. You can make great use of the commercial breaks to put that load away--or better yet, into the arms of those who happen to wear those clothes. Each owner of a pile can be responsible to put their clean clothes away.

6. Dust a room. Sometimes you put off dusting because you think it will take too long (I put it off because I hate dusting). However, in less than fifteen minutes you can get an entire room dusted. With a feather duster or one of the disposable products, it won't take long at all to go over the surfaces. Work from top to bottom and go clockwise around the room.
... I still hate dusting

7. Hang up those clothes that mistook the chair for a clothes hanger. You know how flat surfaces can be so convenient to drop things on, 'just for now'. Once one item is there, it doesn't take long for the surface to disappear completely under the pile of clothes. Take the time to sort through these clothes. Make a pile for things that need to be taken to the cleaners, a pile for things that need repair and the pile to be hung up. Hang up the clothes that need to be hung up, take the pile to be repaired and take the clothes that need to go to the cleaners to your car. While you are out running errands, you can drop off the clothes at the cleaners. Now you have an uncluttered chair to sit and read in.

What did you accomplish in 15 minutes?

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Gaining Healthy Weight

In 4 years, I have lost 20 lbs and nearly gained it back.

Picture dated July 2003, two days before I was told: Now, 4 years ago I lost that 20 lbs in 3 weeks due to the stress and not eating because my husband told me he was having an affair. (bit of a shock to my system to say the least!) I was severely depressed at what my world had become. The news blindsided me. I had NO IDEA what was going on. Looking back, oh yeah, signs were everywhere. At first, my husband had me convinced it was my fault for what he had done, I should have been a better wife ... blah, blah, blah. Well, my attitude began to change.........

Picture dated November 2004, getting ready to jump off a 50ft cliff: I began rediscovering myself. I spent about 4-5 days/week at the gym working out 1-2 hrs. In addition, I would be out on some serious mountain bike trails 1-2 days/week. Needless to say, I was in amazing shape and condition. I was coping with a pending divorce, moving my home, dealing with an ex-husband that was ... well ... difficult (to be kind with words). Working out was far healthier way of dealing with my stress than alcohol and drugs, though I did lean on both at needed times.

I moved away from him and closer to my mom.
Started up Organized Solutions and life has been so good since.

Picture dated September 2007, out with friends: Happy, healthy and not quite 20 lbs gained in 3 years. UGH! I haven't dieted in the past, I don't eat poorly and I'm not going to start dieting now. The ability to workout is not happening right now. That is the result of this slow weight gain.

When I step on a scale and see my weight, I could let that number make me feel bad. As I stand there, I think about who I am, what it took to get to this point and how I have returned to myself - Happier than ever.

That number is a point of information. It means nothing to me.
Looking around me at what matters: My boys, my family, my friends.
That weight cannot be measured.

Next time you step on a scale,
Close your eyes and do not look at the number.
Think about who you are and take the weight of yourself.
Appreciate all that you have.
Do this daily.
The weight you gain from this is precious.

What do you appreciate about yourself?

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Closet from Hell

Now, that is what "Molly" deemed her closet to be.
I saw the potential for it to be a great closet.

Molly has lots of stuff. Piled all over the shelves. Even stuff stacked in the center on the closet floor, though you can no longer walk around because there is more stuff tossed around. (perhaps I should choose a different word than 'stuff?')

In order to get started, we had to pull all the items on the floor out of the room so we can have some room to work.
Like most projects, I warned Molly that this was going to get worse before it gets better. With room to work, we started on the top shelves and began pulling items down and decided what stays and what goes.

Molly began finding items she had forgotten about. She discovered wrapping supplies, boxes & bags of plastic silverware, plates and napkins for every occasion. Memories were found in pictures and kids artwork.

The floor was found and the closet became organized. An area for each season of home decorations, large kitchen items grouped together, party supplies for each theme on one shelf, and a supply area for napkins, plates, silverware and candles.

Bags of items had to be trashed because they were crushed, broken or worn out. Many more items were loaded into her Molly's car to be donated and enjoyed by a new family. Molly began to feel much better about this closet.

"Oh my, it is actually functional. I can find stuff again."

Now Molly can prepare for her holiday parties this weekend and use some of the items she found that were lost in her closet.

What have you found recently at the bottom of your closet?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Organizing Your Weakest Link (Part 2)

In a previous post, I wrote about THAT room we all have in our home. That scary room that is the catch all for all things we just don't know where to put them. Perhaps it is not a room, but a closet or, if you're lucky, a drawer.

"Michele's" home is another beautiful home, well organized and decorated for the Christmas holiday. But....bum, bum, bahm....she has THAT room.

This room is could be used for a guest bedroom or a craft room, though it is THAT room for everything that hasn't quite found a home in Michele's home. Michele has craft supplies, gifts, summer home supplies, bed, home decor, her kid's toys/keepsakes, school team gear, books, magazines, etc, etc, etc .......

"Where do we start?"
"Doesn't this room scare you?"
"This has got to be the worst thing you have ever seen?"

Well, we start by choosing an item near by: Keep or Pitch.
If Keep, then put it away. If Pitch, trash or donate.
No, this room does not scare me.
No, this is not the worst thing I have ever seen.

5 hours later.
One mini van loaded with bags and boxes for donation.
One front porch filled with bags to be trashed.
Michele's room is now much more organized.

She now has all her gifts together ready for wrapping. Her summer home supplies are together. Michele's craft supplies are organized in a cabinet. She sorted through her cookbooks and found some to bring to the kitchen, many others will be donated. Kid's items are back in their rooms, school sports gear is in a plastic bin.

That room is in much better shape. Still a bit of work ahead. Perhaps installing some shelving for a craft/gift center. That decision will come after the holidays.

Michele feels much better about her home and Goodwill is getting a van loaded with some great donations. I am glad I was able to get Michele motivated to clean-up That room.

What have you taken from your home for donation?

Monday, December 10, 2007

Toledo is Getting Organized


I am so thankful to WTOL for placing me on their program.

I am looking forward to helping some families in the Toledo area get organized.

Here's a link to the Your Day website. Here you will find the video under "Organizing Tips for the Holidays." I will have the video posted next week.

This is so amazingly delightful!
Thank you to everyone who believed in me.

Toledo -- Send in your projects to,
let's get organized!

What project do you want help with?

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Bringing Papa Home

I have been working with a family for the past week. Their 85 year old father became ill and was hospitalized. He is recovering, though he will not be able to use stairs again. He lives in a great home, but his bedroom is on the second floor. I am working with the family to clear out an office on the first floor to be used for his bedroom.

Papa's office has been used for 40+ years, needless to say there was a lot of papers, invoices and documents from the family business. Items were sorted into trash, shred, family, garage sale. I think I counted 8 bags on Friday to be trashed. There was also 4-5 boxes of books to be donated, 3 large boxes of papers to be shredded.

There is also a beautiful collection of handmade wooded goblets, vases and bowls that need to be packed for the family to sort on a later date.

During the first day of this project, the family received word that Papa was going to be released from the hospital and transported to a rehab facility.
Fantastic news! The family members were able to leave the project and take care of their father while I continued to clear out the office.

The office is nearly ready for carpet, new windows and paint. There is a bit more to clear out in the home before Papa comes home. Projects like this one really make me feel wonderful. It is great to see this family work together at keeping their father home. From the phone calls and stories I have heard, Papa is getting a bit feisty at the rehabilitation facility. Hopefully he will be able to come home soon.

I am so thankful to be able to help this family get their Papa home.

How has a client made you feel thankful for what you do?

Friday, December 07, 2007

Jacob is 7 ... finally

"I'm turning 7, on December 7, in 2007"

Jacob's enthusiasm about his birthday is very similiar to mine. He has stretched it out to a week long celebration. And I love it!!

Yes, Jacob has a mohawk and sometimes it is red. I figured he's not in the job market right now, why not have a crazy hairstyle. Honestly, it matches his personality.

My letter to Jacob is written and sealed.

Jacob's birthday week was kicked off with another tradition the boys and I share -- creating their birthday cake. Staying with the theme, Jacob wanted a 7 cake.

Jacob has such an energizing personality.
He's crazy like his mommy.
And the entertaining way he eats cake ..... I could sell tickets.

Happy Birthday Jacob!
I love you!
xoxoxox eeeek xoxoxox

What birthday traditions do you have?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Watch Out Oprah ... Here I Come!!!

I'm going to be on CBS WTOL-TV!!

Monday, December 10th, 9am eastern
(don't worry if you miss it ... it will posted here next week)

It is going to be a 3 minute bit about getting organized for the holidays.

I sent them an email.
They contacted me.
And as the saying goes ... the rest is history.

Didn't I say I wanted to be interviewed by Oprah as one of the Top 10 successful women under 40? This is my third step in 3 months to achieving this goal!!

Proof that if there is something you want,
Really, really want.
Write it down. Tell people. Make it happen.

What do you really, really want?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Windmill Cookies

Happy thoughts of my childhood today.
Going to grandma's house, laughing and playing. Snacking on chips, candy, cookies ... pretty much whatever my brother and I wanted (afterall, we were at Grandma and Pa's house).

And eating Windmill Cookies!

Geez, I cannot remember the last time I ate one.

While working with a family today, I was offered a Windmill cookie (that project story to follow later this week).

It was amazing. All I could think about was my Grandma and how much fun I had with her. The games we would play, stories she shared, the cookies she baked and all the time spent at her and Pa's home.

Eating that windmill cookie today brought back so many wonderful memories. I find it very interesting how a cookie can trigger such feelings.

My grandma passed away 5 years ago on Christmas evening. Perhaps with the holiday approaching, I am remembering her. I just find it quite interesting to eat that windmill cookie today.

I am thankful my boys have a very close relationship with my mom. I wonder what they will remember about their grandma when they are 38 years old.

What memory do you have about your grandma?

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Organizing Your Weakest Link

We all have a scary room in our home.
Your house looks great, though lurking there is ... That room.

Your scary room is the place that stuff ends up that you just can't be bothered putting away. Maybe it is a drawer, cabinet, closet, spare bedroom, basement or garage.

"Jody's" house is fantastic.
Everything is neat, tidy and organized, except for two rooms in her basement. These two rooms are her Scary rooms. Bit overrun with seasonal decorations, home improvement supplies, kids toys and costumes. Like the old saying, "You are only as strong as your weakest link," your home is only as comfortable as your worst room.

Because of these two rooms Jody felt awful, wanted to do something about it. She called me to help her purge. And WOW, she was fantastic!! I expected about 4 hours to complete this project.

Jody and I began in the basement storage room. This is where Jody's seasonal decorations, home improvement and sports equipment is stored. The room has great shelves, though many of her items were on the floor.

We quickly sorted through the items, tossing all that was trash out of the room. Then placed all the home improvement paints, tools and such in one area. All the seasonal decorations together on the shelves and finally the sports equipment. Jody was left with plenty of space to store all her Christmas decorations.

Onto Jody's husband's desk, which we were "not allowed to touch anything." We didn't do much except clean up around the desk and get the Lego sculptures stored in a small cabinet. Though now her husband has much more room to sort out his stuff. Even with the little bit we could do, Jody felt so much better about the area.

Finally, the other storage room in Jody's basement. This is an area where many of the kids old toys and Halloween costumes are kept. Again, we began by pulling items out. Jody sorted through them, keeping and trashing. I cleaned up the area and put everything back that was staying.

All the trash was taken to garage, and now Jody is extremely pleased with her house now. No more unorganized, scary rooms.

It only took 2.5 hours!!
Time flies when you are having fun.

Where is your scary room?