Kidecals

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A sweet company is going to be a very helpful part of the upcoming changes in our lives – Kidecals! When I was asked to take a look at these labels and told that…

Kidecals are personalized labels that are dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer safe!  Plus they stick to any surface! You can use these stickers on clothing, backpacks, tupperware, devices…you name it. If you don’t need any name labels, there are still plenty of options to choose from for both kids and adults! We offer keyboard stickers canning/baking labels, chalkboard labels, and much more!

…you know that there was no way I could resist saying yes. Just having two kids, we’re always forgetting something here or there. So, as soon as I got a chance to breathe, I headed over to the Kidecals website and searched for labels that would work for all four of us. I decided the best option would be this one with our last name and phone number. I had no idea what I would do with them, but I thought they were classy and useful.

Ordering online was super fun and easy (once I weeded out the options that I wanted). The site is super cute and easy to navigate – it’s very organized to help you get exactly what you want to label all the things in your life. The value is there, too – the labels range from $20 to $30 — especially when you think about all the things you can label for safe keeping.

It took just a few days for my order to arrive, and unfortunately, I got to see the waterproof effect right away. Our (old) mailbox was pretty bad about keeping things dry, and it happened to be raining the day they arrived. No issues with the labels, hallelujah!

What took longest for me was figuring out what to put the labels on, but then, our trip came up and I was super worried we’d leave a charger, kindle, or phone behind. The Kidecals were super easy to apply, they didn’t peel off, and made it really easy when we were with people who had the same phone chargers. I’m super thrilled with my decision, and can’t wait to decide on baby names and start an order for labeling all their “stuff”!

kidecals
(I did swipe out our phone number!)

 

Want to snag your own? Head over to Kidecals.com and pick out your favorites today!

5 Home and Life Organization Tips

Disclaimer: I participated in a promotion with US Family Guide in exchange for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Remember when I told you about Debbie Lillard‘s “A Mom’s Guide to Home Organization”? Well, I finally organized my time and get a chance to read it. Here are the top five things I learned as I read.

5 Home and Life Organization Tips

1. Use a Daily Planner. I have to do this or it’s mass failure. Sure, technology helps, but I cannot manage work, family, blogging, and my business obligations without seeing it all in one place. (When you have 5 email addresses, things get a bit crazy!) My planner absolutely helps me keep things straight, but Lillard gives a great tip that I have to start using – log your spending in the planner! Say you start the week with $100. Log your spends and remaining money on each day of the week. This will help with budgeting.

My Planner – Things I Need To Do

2. Use a stair basket to gather things that “don’t belong”. This method is awesome for getting everything in the right place. Instead of using one basket (because then everything remains my responsibility), we opted to have a basket for each of us. The idea is that we will each take care of the things in our baskets any time we go upstairs. So far, the kids have some learning to do. It really helps capture all the mess in our public space.

Thirty One Mini Utility Bin
Mini Utility Bins as Stair Baskets

3. Manage the paperwork – file things away! Last weekend, I took Lillard’s filing tips and sorted piles of paper into things to read, to file, and to do (see my planner!). The file pile resulted in putting things in the folders I created last year for medical, house, dogs, cars, utilities, Ari’s school, bank, and more. This past week, all mail that came in was immediately processed and filed.

File System

4. “An organized fridge is a healthy fridge.” While meal planning, I couldn’t agree more. Having everything in its place helps to quickly grab the oldest stuff first and to see what we really have to eat. There’s a bin for veggies/fruit (I don’t like to put the berry baskets in there, so I combine), a bin and a drawer for meats (we eat a lot of protein around here), a shelf for drinks and my lunch, a shelf for leftovers (ewwwww to all that McDonalds, Greg), and an entire shelf dedicated to dairy aisle stuff.

The before:

Yuck!

 

The after:

Much better.

5. Have a schedule. This week, we put the kids on a new routine. Bedtime started at 8. Wake up is between 7:30 and 8:30. Naps are 2:15-4:15. Everyone is appropriately tired, allowing dedicated kid time for me (I’m working on giving them time without me having to work on work, blog, or Thirty-One) and dedicated couple time for Greg and I. Having a schedule made all of us happier – let’s hope the routine sticks!

These are just a few of the tips I got from reading Lillard’s book. It’s a great read for anyone who feels like life is spinning out of control. You might want to learn about how to organize a specific room or part of your life – just flip to that page, get your tip, and get organized. The rest of the book will be there for when you’re ready. You can get your own copy on Amazon.

Get Organized in 2014

Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of the book noted below in exchange for this information. All opinions are 100% my own.

One of my goals in 2014 is to be more organized. Those of you who know me are probably shaking your heads. Thing is, you haven’t seen my bedroom or scraproom or healthy snack cupboard.

To help with that, US Family Guide clued me in on “A Mom’s Guide to Home Organization” and I am interested (for many reasons) to see what this book has to say. I’ll be reading it over the next few weeks and come back at you with a review.

Home Organization

 

The book, available on Amazon, “walks you through simple processes and tips for organizing your time, your stuff and your space. The second half of the book addresses how to teach your children the life skill of being organized”. If you’ve seen my kids’ toy room, you know I need to read this.

Have a room like this?

Use the tips in the book to turn it into this:

I’ll keep you posted. Between this and one of my current personal endeavors, this should be a fun and easy task.

* Note – the above photos are not my house…I wish they were! I’ll post some before and afters. 😉

Personal Planner

Disclaimer: I received a customized Personal Planner in exchange for a review. All opinions, as always, are 100% my own.

If you didn’t find just the right gift for that super organized person in your life, this Personal Planner from personal-planner.com might be just the right thing. Just act quick if you want to personalize a planner – the deadline for ordering them is December 3 (tomorrow) at 6 pm. You can still get a pdf gift certificate so your receiver can create their own through December 25. 

When I read the pitch for this product, I knew it was a great fit for my life:

The company has created a fill-in-the-blanks template just for the design obsessed. Ranging from $18.95 – $21.95, here are the details for this thoughtful gift:

*Outside:*

– upload pictures from desktop and Instagram

– design front & back covers, change images, font color and background

*Inside:*

– pick which month/yr you want the planner to begin with- no longer limits

you to the start of each calendar year

– design writing space details:i.e. “work”, “workout”, weather, etc…

include personal calendar dates throughout the year

– at check out you can choose discreet packaging if planner is a gift

I’ll be using mine to supplement my phone and email calendars. Sometimes even being technologically savvy means missed appointments and bills. I’ll be able to jot down quick thoughts and “see” what I’ve got happening each day.

My customized personal-planner has a front cover with a photo of Greg and the kids:

Front Cover

The back boasts my medals from runs in 2013, an incentive to keep my butt moving:

(So you can see both)

 

I was able to quickly upload these photos to the personal-planner site. Both are actually from Instagram, and the quality turned out fine. (Any weirdness in the photos here are due to the fact that my phone was dying when I took these, and I had to turn off the flash so they shininess wouldn’t come through.) The hardest part? Selecting which photos I’d be using.

Inside, there’s a message for anyone who finds my planner, should I lose it.

My info’s there below my name, but I left it out for photo purposes.

 

Each day has ample space for writing in the plans. I opted to have a training block on each so I can keep tabs on my exercise. There’s a to-do list and a “list of the week” section, too. Haven’t decided how I’ll use that list yet, but I might use it to start some top 10 blog post ideas.

The site even lets you put in special days. I added our birthdays and anniversaries, but I wish I’d taken more time to add in others’ birthdays, too.

Shh…don’t remind me that he’ll be four in a ‘lil over a year.

My favorite part, so far, is the overview section. There’s one for 2014 and 2015. I’ll be able to “big plan” my year, which is an excellent way to keep track of all.the.things.

Extras (included in the price) were a ruler/bookmark, a clear folder for keeping “stuff” – mine is housing business cards that I need to reach out to for blogging stuff, Arianna said I should use it for more pics, and extra “notes” pages at the end.

Shipping was quicker than I expected (about a week) and it came in an adorable box (which I forgot to photograph before trash day, sorry).

While I won’t be using this planner until the end of the month (my start date), I’m excited. It will be a great way to stay organized and keep a personal touch. Thank you, personal-planner.com, for making this possible.

Be sure to stop over to personal-planner to check them out.

Cleaning Up

Last night, we finally took down our Christmas tree. Now in its place is the treadmill (a sign that Mama has work to do, huh?). By design, this is so that the kids will have more space in the toy room. For ‘lil Man’s birthday, my parents gave him a train table that will eventually go in his bedroom, but for now, we need it to be in the toy room. With the treadmill gone, that left lots of extra space for the one couch to slide back and the train table to come out of hiding.

There was only one problem. Where were we putting the rocking lounger I got from Wendy’s Grandma’s? It was time to clean up the toys strewn about the floor and make space. ‘lil Man didn’t need to help, it wasn’t his mess. Mr. Burgher was off doing dishes and laundry (have I ever mentioned I am lucky?), so that left ‘lil Miss A and I.

There was a simple system. Train pieces go in the basket that came with it. Balls go in one tote bag (see, another way to re-purpose, use them for organizing!), blocks and trucks (‘lil Man’s toys) in another. Books on the book shelf, and stuffies/babies in the storage tote. ‘lil Miss A was assigned books and train parts. She failed.

Is that mean to say that she failed? Perhaps a bit; however, this is the little girl who has always amazed others with her willingness to clean up at the end of a day. She ended up in time out twice for throwing toys and jumping off the top of the couch instead of helping. At that point, I gave up and did it myself. Frustrated, I flailed out on the lounger and shut my eyes.

Next thing you know? ‘lil Miss A is jumping on me. “Mama! It’s clean! You are my hero!” So glad to help you out, baby girl, so glad to help.