20 Mar 2020 Getting Organized While Social Distancing
social distancing? let’s get organized!
Stuck at home during this very strange time of social distancing? Check out these bite size projects you can do while you are trying to figure out your new normal! Or contact us to learn about our virtual organizing services – get organized with us using zoom or facetime!
these small projects can be done even while you are going stir crazy – a bit of organization can help!
1. Getting Organized With Spices!
Pull out all of your spices, group like spices, and check expiration dates. Toss those that are older than you are comfortable with – and give them the sniff test if not sure. If they don’t have a scent – they sure aren’t going to help your cooking! Combine multiple jars into one or consider decanting into matching jars like these! If you want your spices in a drawer, add a spice liner. If they are in a cabinet, add a step riser to keep them visible. I like to group mine by use (spicy, baking, salts, etc) but you can also alphabetize or, as one of my clients does, by color! Typically we’ll keep the back stock in a bin in the pantry or a cabinet to refill as needed. You can use a Sharpie paint pen to jot expiration dates on the back of the jars.
One of the benefits of decanting spices into matching jars as in this drawer is the consistency in size and style which makes it so easy on the eye. It also gives you the opportunity to buy in bulk as these are easily refilled.
2. Getting Organized With Laundry Room Supplies
These often get neglected because they aren’t super visible if they are in a cabinet, and aren’t as much of a priority as other areas since laundry rooms aren’t high traffic for guests. But having your laundry and other supplies organized makes life so much easier in these spaces.
Pull everything out, group like with like. Meaning – cleaning supplies grouped by type, utility items separated out by item, etc. Toss empty containers, damaged items or trash. Use clear shoe boxes, decorative baskets or open top plastic totes to contain each of your categories. When placing back in the cabinets or on the shelves – put infrequently used items at the top and items you grab for more often on the lower shelves. Consider adding wall mounted Elfa wall racks to hold quick grab or overflow products!
Laundry rooms often hold utility items like batteries & tools, as well as all sorts of cleaning supplies and random things no one knows what to do with. Be purposeful about your categories and ruthless with your editing. It will pay off to wrangle control over the stuff that lives here!
3. Getting Organized With Office Supplies
Now that you may be a home office dweller who is working remotely – you may or may not actually have a ‘home office’ so creating a mobile work station may be really important! Only way that can happen is if your supplies are organized and easily accessible. First, gather up all of your supplies – they may be in one space or multiple spaces. Sort like with like, then edit out any pens that don’t work, dried up markers & white out (does anyone use this anymore??), 99% used note pads with that one sad page left, etc. Once you see your volume, I like to set up a drawer or desktop caddy with my go to supplies, then store the rest as back stock to replenish as needed.
If you need a mobile stash, use a caddy or lazy susan for supplies, then use labeled shoe boxes to stash the rest by category. I like using Ziploc bags to hold smaller groups within larger categories. These can be stored in a credenza, on a shelf in decorative baskets, or a closet or cabinet.
- note pads/post its
- fasteners (this includes staplers, tape, etc)
4. Getting Organized With Medicines & Supplements
This is a category that is often sadly neglected so things pile up in various spots like the kitchen and bathrooms. Same as other areas – gather them all up and sort out into categories like cold & flu, prescription, pain relief, vitamins, supplements, first aid, etc. Then set aside any that are expired. If it is a prescription, then we recommend finding a prescription drug drop off point – in our county there is a kiosk at the local juvenile court. Regular meds or supplements need to go in the trash unfortunately but check out the link below on best practices.. Once they are edited, group in logical categories. If you have kids – creating a kid only bin is often helpful. If you’ve got a fair amount of items – separate out into categories. Personally we have 2 bins – one is for current and frequently used (prescription, ibuprofen, allergy) and back up/first aid. This works for my family but we’ve set up systems with a dozen separate categories that works well for each client.
For storing them, we usually use clear pantry bins. These work well because you can see what’s in them, they are sturdy and easy to label. We find drawers can be challenging because everything falls over when you open them and shoe boxes with a lid means a lot of things don’t fit. Best practice is to not store in a bathroom due to humidity so our go to is normally the pantry or kitchen cabinets.
Suggested labels for your bins:
- cold & flu
- first aid
- pain relief
- kids (or children)
- stomach (or digestive health)
Find helpful information on disposing of old medications here:
5. Choose Your Own Adventure With Getting Organized
Identify one category of ‘things’ in your home that needs editing. Don’t pick too big of a project – a junk drawer, coffee mugs, cords & cables, or the like. Follow the process: gather, sort like with like, edit, group, contain, label. Message me if you need help! Send me a pic and we’ll do a quick virtual organizing session!
If all of this feels like too much – we also do Virtual Organizing! This means that we work with you remotely using Zoom or FaceTime. Our experienced organizers guide you through the organizing process virtually, using coaching techniques and direct instruction.