Hello! My name is Stefanie Wyres and you have downloaded my Budget-Friendly Guide! This guide will take you through the different rooms and categories in your home to get you on your way to a more peaceful home. As always, if you see that you need a little extra help, feel free to contact me by email or phone. My contact info is at the top of this page. Happy reading!
1. Deal with Clothing first. Go through every piece of clothing and apply the “have I worn it in 6 months” question to each item. If you don’t fit into it, or it’s in disrepair, or out of style, pitch or donate it. Your closet will breathe a sigh of relief! Next, organize the remaining items by type (suit coats, dresses, tops, pants, jeans). If you are a super-fun gal like me, you can then organize them by color. Note about seasonal things: I live in Texas, so it’s hot here almost all year. I don’t put away my seasonal things because there’s a saying in Texas: “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute!” So, there’s really no reason to put summer things away at the first sign of fall, besides, this way, you’ll likely donate or toss more if you are keeping all items in the same place. Smile! For more on my fav methodology of dealing with clothing, buy this book!
2. Books, CDs, DVDs, albums, cassettes, 8-tracks – yeah, I said it! I guess that I am a technical girl, so pretty much the minute some other faster, simpler way came out for me to read, listen, or watch, I threw my MP3 player into the trash! Not really, but preeeettty close! So, not every one of you will even be ABLE to do this step. It’s ok. Keep focused on the things you can do and soldier on! For those of you willing to say goodbye to your “Big 80’s” CD collection, donate those bad boys someplace that they will get some use. I am just a very big fan of Spotify, Kindle and their ilk. Please, please forgive me for saying all of that if the big EMP does finally hit! I’ll come to your house when I need my Led Zeppelin fix.
3. Toys, crafts, hobby stuff – everyone has their “thing” that has taken over the house. Everyone. Whatever that item is, discard those things that are out of date, or that you never use anymore. My “thing” that fits into this category is scrapbooking stuff. I used to scrapbook, but I haven’t in years. Because of my aforementioned love of all things electronic, WHY would I cut photos and paper and glue them together?? WHY?? Also, I have a lot of the stuff. Clearing out this stuff and donating it to someone I know who loves paper frees up an entire bookshelf in my craft room! Whoo-hoo! That’s a win! So, just like with clothing, discard first (when I say “discard”, I am saying donate OR trash), then organize the rest by category. In the example of toys, we would grab a container for Legos, one for Barbies, one for Star Wars action figures. You can get shoebox sized plastic containers at the Container Store, Target and Walmart. They also have larger sizes. I recommend taking a look at how much you have in each category, then deciding the size container you need after you’ve played the “which one of these is not like the other” game. Don’t forget to label the boxes!
4. Desk Items – they need love too. Deep inside the recesses of every drawer in your home lurks a mish-mosh of unrelated items that don’t even go in that room. Container Store has drawer organizers and silverware organizers that you can use in every drawer of your home! It’s not just for silverware anymore! Here’s the part that may take some thinking and planning on your part. What goes where? In each room, the drawers should contain items that “make sense” in that room. Some folks use their dining room only for homework and folding laundry. So, in that room, I’m thinking pens, pencils, calculator, stuff like that. Got me? The main thing is to have one location for each category. “You’ll find a hammer either in the garage, the kitchen junk drawer, or on dad’s desk...or the dining room” This… isn’t ideal.
5. All the stuff that’s left over - Target has these great storage bins by Threshold that come in every color and are only $9.99. Any place you have things that belong together, but they don’t sit up well, or they look terrible (like bags of almond flour or other weird things like that), use one of these cute bins. These are 13 x 13, but they also have some that aren’t as tall if you have a shorter space between shelves. The bottoms of them aren’t the sturdiest; they aren’t meant for stacks of heavy books, but they are great for odds and ends that you need to stash together in one place.
6. Most people I work with simply do not have enough storage space in their home, or enough shelving (which is kinda the same thing). Target has these great cube bookshelves that fit 8 fabric storage bins (the 11 inch ones) for only $39.99. Find them here.
7. Purse or Briefcase – Go through your bag once a week and throw out trash. Make sure that your bag contains all of things you will need for the week (feminine protection, for instance). I put different categories into small bags inside my purse. I have hair ties, bobby pins and headbands in a tiny round bag in my purse. I keep lipstick, hand lotion, pressed powder and anything makeup related in a small makeup bag. My keys and my phone each go into a compartment by themselves. This way, I can quickly find everything I need!
8. Car – You may not think of your car as an extension of your home – but it is! If you travel in the car a lot, taking kids to school and activities, or have a commute to work and back, your car can bring you peace or drag you down! Your car should have: Trash receptacle (or you can use a reusable or paper grocery bag), over-the-seat bag to carry items like toys or activities, small makeup bag for lotion and chapstick or lipgloss, a jacket or sweater for cold restaurants/shopping, and some flip flops. The shoes are because I learned my lesson going out with the kids and realizing that one of them didn’t have shoes on. Anyone with me, or is this just me!???! Also, my feet like to have a break from gym shoes after a workout.
9. We are rounding the corner here – I hope these tips have been helpful to you! The next category to bring peace to your home is Email and Social Media. I used to get TOO MANY promotional emails. TOO MANY! Can I just hear an “Amen”?? A few years ago, I found Unroll Me. This thing is magical! You put in your email address that has the (ahem) promotional problem and Unroll Me detects what emails are promotional and pops them all together into one beautiful email that is scrollable! It will ask you “Do you want this email rolled up?” so that you know what’s in there and those super important things remain in your in-box. (FYI, Gmail rolls up promotions automatically) Ok, let’s talk about Social Media. If you have people that you follow that bring more stress than joy, PLEASE HIDE THEIR POSTS. You do not have to unfollow people or unfriend them, but you do have the right to preserve your sanity by hiding posts that may steal your joy. We are guardians of our own peace and this is one way to guard your peace. You are under no obligation to read mean or plain stupid posts. You just aren’t.
10. Number 10!!! This one is fast and easy and will always be my last point in a list like this. Here goes…if the above all sounds nice and good, but you feel paralyzed to start, hire a pro. It’s not uncommon to feel that way. Many people think that a clean, organized home is just a fantasy, but it’s not! If you can imagine it, but just can’t make it happen, call me. It could be that your systems and strategies are missing a step. You may need more shelves or storage solutions. We can talk it through together. I can help you if you need motivation too! Also, if you remember back to your teenager days, it’s always more fun to “clean your room” with a friend!
Thank you, thank you for reading this list. I hope that these tips helped you gain more peace in your home! Send me a message on Facebook if this has helped you. I’d love to hear from you!