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Weekly Tip

When Was the Last Time You Washed This?

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Spring has officially sprung! And with it comes spring cleaning! Most of us remember the basics (windows and screens, baseboards and fans, etc) but I bet there’s one small section you don’t even think about. Can you guess what it is?

Throw pillows

When was the last time you washed your throw pillows? I know for me, the answer is “uhhh never?”. But think about it, you lay on throw pillows just like you do your bed pillows and chances are you probably wash those cases regularly. What’s better on a cold winter day than snuggling up on your couch for a rest by the fireplace? Not much. So now that it’s spring, freshen up your living room by freshening up your throw pillows. Because snuggling up on the couch when it’s a rainy day is just as delightful.

Keep in mind the type of material will dictate the method of cleaning, but if possible, remove the covers** and get those things clean!

 

**Some experts say to only spot clean pillows that don’t have removable covers to ensure the pillow holds its shape.
This also applies if the pillow is vintage or has delicate embroidery. An alternative to this is dry cleaning the entire pillow

 

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A Simple Tip to Take Away the “Out of Town Guests Stress”

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Out of town guests arriving can be extremely exciting and at the same time extremely stressful. One way to cut down on the stress is to keep things organized so you know where everything is at a moment’s notice.
And what’s one way to do this?

Keep ‘guest’ related items in the room they belong

With this tip I’m thinking specifically of towels and linens. If you have a designated guest room, utilize the closet or dresser space for those items. If guests stay in a child’s bedroom, keep the linens tucked away in the closet where they can’t be used accidentally. Typically I’m a big advocate for keeping everything in one place  (such as a linen closet) but sometimes you have to break the rules in order to eliminate the stress of looking for something only to find it’s been used by a “non-guest”.

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I Need Help!!

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Overwhelmed with your project(s)?

Do you have too many projects surrounding you? Last month I challenged you to start a project during the month of January. Did you do it? Did you begin a project? The bigger question is, did you finish the project? So many times people start a project but before finishing it they begin another one, and then another one, and then another one…
and eventually they get overwhelmed and just give up on everything they’ve been working on and nothing gets completed.

So here’s today’s tip:

Finish one project before moving on to the next

Pick one project, big or small, and FINISH IT!
Then ride the wave of excitement that comes with a project being done and tackle another partially completed project.
Focus on each project as you’re working on it and see each one through to completion before going on to the next.

You can do it!

 

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One Way to Overcome the Post Holiday Blues

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Beating the Winter Slump

Christmas is past. We’ve rung in the new year and now 2019 has begun… and for most of us, that means a few more months of dark, cold winter. If just the thought of that makes you feel depressed, here’s one tip that will help banish that gloomy mood and will keep you motivated and productive when winter feels like it will never end:

Tackle A Project

Think about it, winter is the only season when you’re mostly inside your home. It’s dark longer, it’s usually very cold (relevant to where you are) and snow days are real things, in work and school. There may be the occasional walk or play date outside, but no one is packing up their family for a picnic at the park and staying out late in January (at least not here in the US). Since you’re going to be home more anyways, find a project you’ve been meaning to tackle, and use this month to actually do it! Whether that is organizing, painting, rearranging, purging, DIYing, etc, make the most of this forced “inside-ness” and stay productive. Then, when spring finally rolls around, you can get outside more knowing your home is in good shape.

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How To End the Year the Right Way

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

One in, One out… Or two

Christmas is 22 days away! And some of you have no idea where you’re going to put all of the new stuff (cuz let’s be honest, a lot of it is “stuff”). If you’re already in panic mode just thinking about finding space for the new loot, take this one simple piece of advice:

One in, One (or two) out

It’s a simple concept – for every new item you get, remove 1 (or if possible 2) of the same item that you already own. I know this can’t apply to everything, but it can be used more than you think – Clothes, toys, kitchen gadgets, hair utensils, tools, linens, shoes, electronics, books, jewelry… And plenty more categories!

This Christmas doesn’t have to be the tipping point for a chaotic and unorganized home. It can be the start of a MORE organize home if you deal with each item as you go. No more cramming and shoving. Take an item, give it a home and if an older version needs to go, let it go
(cue the song that now’s playing in your head

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My #1 Tip for the Holidays

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Let the holiday season begin!

If you’re like me, November 1st meant turning on Christmas music and beginning the countdown to December 25th!
If you’re not like me at all, you don’t appreciate my mentioning Christmas since we haven’t even had Thanksgiving yet. Well, whether you like it or not, the holiday season is approaching which means lots of food and lots of stuff.
One way to help combat this problem of “more” is to:

PURGE

Your pantry, your fridge, your closet, your kids’ closet, their toys, etc.
Go through the areas that can get overcrowded once the holidays have passed and make some room.
What’s better than Thanksgiving leftovers? Not much.
So make room for them by purging your pantry and fridge before the big day.
What’s better than a brand new Christmas sweater?
Not much, so make room in your closet by purging items you don’t want to keep.

It doesn’t have to be a lot, but I guarantee getting rid of even a few things
will make a difference in your stress level when trying to find a place for the new items.

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One of my Favorite Tips when Tackling Storage Spaces

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Don’t Mix and Match

Whether you’re organizing your garage, attic, basement or storage shed,
this one piece of advice will go a long way in getting that area organized in  a way that you will be able to maintain it:

– use the same containers –

This could mean the same bins throughout the entire space, or specific bins for each category (Christmas, keepsake, kids clothes, etc).
However you choose to organize them, having the same bins in the same area will make organizing, stacking, and locating
easier than trying to shove a bunch of mismatched bins together in one place.

Also, I typically recommend bins with locking lids when working in these areas, because they last longer and
do a better job keeping dirt, insects and who knows what else out of your bins.

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My First Rule of Decluttering

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Top Shelf’s First Rule of Decluttering

Recently I’ve gotten several clients with larger organizing projects and sometimes they are totally overwhelming, to my clients and even to me.
I typically schedule several hours at a time for jobs like these, but some of my clients have tighter time frames or budgets so longer days aren’t possible.
When that happens the first thing I choose to do once we start the job is
– a general decluttering of the area.

There are almost always items that don’t belong in the space and removing those items will make a big difference during the beginning phases of the organizing process. Keep this in mind the next time you have an overwhelming project and don’t know where to begin

– start by eliminating the items that don’t belong.

This will make what does belong easier to organize and makes the end goal attainable.

You got this!

– Jenna –

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A Fall Check List

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Eating an Elephant Monthly Newsletter

Fall Check List

Hello August and hello transitioning from summer to fall. Whether you’re already feeling the change in the weather or are still battling scorching heat, August means changing your mind set from summer vacation to school, colder weather and bundling up inside on cozy nights! 

Here’s a little “to do” list to get you ready for a great and organized fall!

  • Begin to go through summer clothes/items and create a “donate” pile for those you want to get rid of. This can mean summer clothes you didn’t wear at all, clothes and sandals that won’t fit your children next summer and other summer items that are just collecting dust. Why let them take up time and space?
  • Clean out your oven and microwave. Those 2 areas get used a lot more in the colder months than they do in the warm summer months so make sure they’re ready for whatever you bring at them this year!
  • Did you go on a summer vacation? Go through your pictures now and organize/store them however you want (digitally or in a bin or book).
  • Clean up your outdoor areas – this includes pruning whatever needs to be cleaned up before it gets too cold, all outdoor sitting areas and fire pits.
  • Check your heating system to make sure it’s working properly. In the moment, it seems like there’s nothing worse than waking up in the middle of the night feeling like an icicle because the heat went out!

This isn’t a long list, and I’m sure there’s more you have to do to prep for fall, but completing this list now will make the next couple months a lot easier for you and your family! Get to it!

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