10 Tips for Staying Tidy

For many of us, getting organized is manageable but maintaining the organization is a challenge. Whether you spend your weekend binge organizing or outsource your organizing projects to a professional, the organization systems need to be maintained. As a busy mom of four, dog mom of two pooches, wife, and business owner, I want to share my 10 favorite personal tidy tips that help me keep sane when the day is hectic.

  1. Make Your Bed
    Make your bed right when you crawl out.
  1. Put Your Stuff Away, Right Away
    Remember how it takes time and resources to get organized? Now you need to put your things away to keep your home organized.
  1. Make the Rounds
    Make the rounds through your house to collect and put away miscellaneous items daily or twice daily.
  1. Run the Dishwasher
    Empty the dishwasher first thing in the morning. This will start your day with a clean slate in the kitchen. Load the dishwasher throughout the day with soiled dishes. Run the dishwasher nightly. Repeat this process every day to prevent a dirty dish pile-up.
  1. Clean-Up as You Go
    Wipe the countertops after each meal. Wipe the bathroom counter and faucet after you brush your teeth. Squidgy the shower walls and door after a shower. Wipe spills and splatters as they happen.
  1. Have a Schedule
    Have a day scheduled for larger tasks, even if you cannot dedicate a full day to these tasks. Focusing time on just one task will get it done more efficiently than juggling all the tasks unsuccessfully at one time.
    • Grocery day
    • Meal prep day
    • Laundry day
    • Cleaning day
    • Additionally, use a deep clean schedule to help rotate through deep cleaning areas of your home. Schedule one area per week.
  1. Think Tidy When You Walk Through the Door
    • Leave your shoes at the door
    • Put your bag on its hook
    • Keys go where they belong
  1. Leave Nothing on the Floor
    • Keep toys, papers, blankets, and dirty clothes off the floor
    • Hang up clothes you will re-wear right away
    • Place dirty clothes go into the hamper
    • Towels get hung on the hook
    • Toys get put away when not being used
  1. Take Out the Trash
    Take out the trash when you leave the house for the day. This will keep odors out of your house while you are gone. It will also feel good to see an empty garbage can when you get home from a busy day. Don’t forget garbage collection day. All trash and recycling need to go out on trash day.
  2. Deal with Mail Daily
    Collect, sort, purge, and file mail daily. Removing the junk mail daily will make your mail opening day more manageable. File important mail in one location so it is gathered together and ready when you need to open it. Open the mail when you are ready to address, pay, and file it.

Establishing and maintaining a routine will help your home stay tidy.  At Top Shelf Home Organizing, we love to help busy households get organized. If you are looking for guidance on getting your home or office organized, reach out to Jayme.

What to Expect When Working with a Top Shelf Professional Organizer

Welcome to Top Shelf Home Organizing. Are you ready to feel the freedom of an organized home and office? You deserve to have a home and office that is as organized and productive as it can be. You are busy, we understand. We are here to help you achieve, what you dream your space can be. It is time to stop sifting through the clutter to find what you need.

We can’t wait to work with you!

Professional organizing may be brand new to you. So we are sharing what the journey of hiring a professional organizer looks like. At Top Shelf Home Organizing, we take the time to get to know you, your space, your schedule, your lifestyle, and your personality before coming into your home or office. Our goals are to teach you simple solutions for your home, office, and life.

Here are the six steps to expect during your experience with Top Shelf Home Organizing. 

Intake form

The form will be emailed to you shortly after your initial contact with us. It is designed to give you a chance to think about your true organizing goals and challenges are. The intake form is a preliminary understanding of the extent of your organizing needs and the people involved. Once this form is complete and returned, we will set up a phone call.

Phone Call

A 30-minute casual phone call will further identify your organizing goals and help us to get to know each other. This call will determine the extent of your organizing project, materials that may be needed, the timeframe of the project, and the number of organizers needed to complete. We will go through the intake form in depth.

On-Site Consultation

An on-site consultation will give us the whole picture of your space and allow us to meet one-on-one with each other. On-site we will finetune the project scope and goals while getting familiar with your space. We will take measurements and photographs, and create a list of materials if products are required. The on-site consultation lets us understand what is behind the scenes to better address your goals.

On-Site Organizing Sessions

The on-site organizing sessions are where the physical work takes place. The five basic steps of organizing will happen. Some people like to work side-by-side with us. Others may prefer to direct us on what to do and remain hands-off. Many people choose to be available for questions and occasional decision-making but continue to go about their daily lives and work. Often, once a relationship is established, the organizers work independently in this phase.

The steps to organizing a project of any size include: 

  • Gather –  All items are removed from current storage. 
  • Sort – Items are sorted by category. 
  • Purge – Items no longer wanted, needed, and liked are donated, disposed and recycled.  
  • Organize – Items are organized into systems that fit and work for you.
  • Label – All items are clearly labeled for ease of locating and returning to storage.

Homework

There may be tasks you prefer to complete on your own, independent of help from the organizers. Some choose to do this to make the project more economical. Other times, people want to go through items that are more personal on their own or with their family. We create a detailed, but a simple list of items that you can complete on your own, in between sessions with the organizer.

Follow-Up

We love to know how the new organization is working for you. We will touch base within a few days of the on-site session to discuss how the organization is going. This time is designed for you to give feedback and ask any questions you may have. We will also check in on any homework you may be working on. This is a great time to schedule future sessions to keep you meeting your goals and maintain what has been organized.  

Top Shelf Home Organizing Policies

On-site consultations are $50. Reservation fees are $50. Both fees are credited to your service. Payment is due in full at the end of each on-site organizing session. 

A cancellation fee of $50 applies to all cancellations and reschedules with less than 24-hour notice. 

Refer someone to Top Shelf Home Organizing and receive 10% back in organizing services. Credits are earned for the first six months of services after referral. Credits are redeemed at a $75 per hour rate. 

Top Shelf Home Organizing, LLC
Simple. Life. Solutions.
Jayme Radomski, Owner
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Jayme@topshelfhomeorganizing.com
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Steps to Decluttering Your Home After the Pandemic

Getting your home back in order after a year-long pandemic is no light task. All items in your home will be identified as purge, store, or put away. Work your way through your home with a plan. Follow the system of gather, sort, purge, organize and label for each area of your home.

Here are some ideas to help make this daunting task more manageable.

1. Start with Storage

Start with your storage areas such as the basement, attic, and garage. Understanding what you have in storage can help determine where to store your items as you work your way through your home. This is also a good time to clear out the items that you no longer need or use. Break this project down into categories of items or areas of storage. Thoroughly go through each item and group it into topics.

2. Infrequently Used Spaces

The next area to tackle would be an area of your home that you do not use every day or will not impact your family’s day-to-day operations. These areas may include guest bedrooms, hall closets, recreation rooms, and the office. Break these areas down into very small, manageable projects. This may require organizing one small drawer or bin per day. Work through the area by area while staying focused. Since these areas are not used daily, it is OK to pause your organizing, close the door and resume tomorrow.

3. Everyday Spaces

The last areas to organize will be the areas you use every day such as the master bedroom, kitchen, and living room. These areas should be relatively easy as you have established what you have in storage and organized items that are not used daily. Rarely used items you will find in the areas you use every day and can be placed in the proper categories in storage. Remove items that you do not need or like (you have probably heard me say this many times). Clearing this clutter will help your home feel more functional and be more organized.

Create a Generous Schedule

Remember, organizing your home can be a daunting process after a year at home. Create a generous schedule working through your home as listed here. Stay focused, get help and allow yourself some grace. Life is getting back to normal and so will your home.

Top Shelf Home Organizing has helped dozens of households simplify, reduce, and get organized. If this process is overwhelming to you, we can help. Contact Jayme to see how Top Shelf Home Organizing can help you.

Organizing Your Next Road Trip

Being organized will make a family road trip an amazing and memorable experience. When everyone knows the route, schedule, activities, and food, the trip will go as smoothly as it can. Here are some ideas to help get organized for the family road trip.

Map out the Route in Advance

Map out your route to help plan your trip. Understand where there may be traffic jams, construction, and road closures so you can plan for detours. Print your map, even if you are using GPS there may be areas without service. The kids might also enjoy a copy of the map to follow along. Plan for frequent stops to swap drivers and get some exercise. Consider worksheets, stories, and games that are themed around the geographic location you are traveling through. It will add value to the travel experience.

Schedule Car Activities

Have a schedule for activities in the car, stops along the way, and arrival time. A schedule will help ease anxiety and limit the “Are we there yet?” questions. Break the schedule into one- or two-hour segments for making stops, meals, and changing activities. Have a variety of activities for the kids to complete amongst themselves, independently, and as a family to make the time go by. Ongoing activities and competitions such as a license plate game, road trip treasure hunt, and bingo allow for some friendly competition. Independent activities can include simple crafts, coloring books, activity sheets, and reading for nice, quiet time.

Plan Snacks and Meals

Create a plan for snacks and meals for the trip. Healthy food options that are well thought out will keep energy up and appetites satisfied. Kids like to eat often, so allow them choices for healthy snacks every hour or so. Schedule in special treats too so they have something to look forward to. Fresh veggies, fruit, veggie chips, granola bars, finger sandwiches, and cheese and crackers, are great choices to help you avoid expensive stops for unhealthy fast food. A road trip meal plan will also keep the captain’s and co captain’s energy levels maximized. A little preparation before the trip will keep everyone nourished.

Organize Car Ahead of Time

Organize the car at the start of the trip. Have a place for food, activities, personal items, and emergency items that may be needed while in transit. Overnight items can be packed a little deeper in the vehicle. We suggest having items needed for any overnight stops on the way packed in a separate bag or area for easy access.

When the trip involves daily travel to new locations and lodging, consider separate bags of clothing for each stop to reduce the need to completely unpack and repack. Have the kid’s activities and materials organized for each child to prevent panic and frustration as they will know where everything is. Have your personal items organized too such as cash, water, snacks, sunglasses, umbrellas, and maps. You will want to have extra water, plastic bags, wet wipes, medication, and emergency contacts available. For the return trip, keep the same level of organization to reduce stress and keep the vehicle tidy.

Have fun planning your next family road trip. The more organized the plan is, the more enjoyable the experience will be.