getting organized.

I’ve been working on lots of organizing around my house.  As part of #healthyandorganized2014 I’ve been on a huge organizing kick.  I don’t know about you, but in our house things have a way of coming unorganized and out of sorts over time.  And of course there are plenty of areas that I never organized in the first place, or organized “just good enough” because I didn’t want to put the time and effort into it before.


So far this year I’ve been trying to focus on some of those areas, and I’m excited to share them.  Today I’m sharing a few of them over on the Knoxville Moms Blog.  Head over there and check out my post.




Happy Tuesday friends!

the 40 hanger project {how i got rid of a lot of clothes}.

the 40 hanger project graphic

As I mentioned last week, I recently took on the challenge of completing the 40 hanger project.  I was inspired by a couple of women on the Knoxville Moms Blog team.  Laura is completing a 50 hanger project herself and Natalie, knowing I was on an organizing mission, thought it would be a good one for me to tackle.  I love a good challenge, my closet was a huge mess, and I love organizing my spaces.  So challenge accepted!


If you saw the clip on the news last week or saw me mention it on here, here is the detailed post about it.



the 40 hanger project


When I first heard of this challenge I heard that you get 40 hangers and that’s it.  I built my own rules to fill in the gaps, so if you decide to try a challenge this like feel free to use my rules or substitute your own.



closet before full picturecloset before

the befores [yikes!!]



1st step:  Go buy hangers.

You can definitely do this project without spending any money on hangers!  I went ahead and took the plunge to buy new hangers because I have wanted matching hangers for a very long time but could never justify spending the money on them.  I’ve heard so many fantastic things about velvet hangers, and really 40 hangers is not all that many, so I went to Target and bought them.  You can also find similar ones like these on Amazon. Closet Complete Ultra Thin No Slip Velvet Hangers for Shirts and Dresses, Black, Set of 50


I found that having nice hangers — and a limited number of them — really helped with the motivation of the whole project.


These were on clearance at Target because of the color.  They were 50% off, so I snagged up all the turquoise ones they had.  I have no problem having brightly colors hangers, especially when I can pay half for them.  I did still buy Tommy the plain white ones, though, for his side.



2nd step:  Pull everything out.

I pulled every clothing item out of my closet until it was empty.  Then I sorted and started deciding what to get rid of and what to keep.


closet during


closet cleanout

3rd step:  Get rid of clothes!

I started with 124 hanging clothing items.  I did my first round thinking I had to be close to 40 and found that I was at 100.  Whew, it was a lot of work to dwindle down to 40.  But I loved it.  I had so many clothes I hadn’t worn in a very long time.  I had some things I kept holding on to just in case I needed them.  But if I had never needed them before, why would I need them now?  It felt really good to just get rid of stuff!


4th step:  Get rid of hangers.

I got rid of all of my old hangers.  Plastic, wire, fabric, my total mismatched, chaotic collection got bagged up and taken to the local thrift shop to donate.  There is no point keeping extra hangers around.  If I keep a stash of hangers around, that is only setting myself up for failure down the road to add more clothes.  Plus no one needs the clutter of all those extra hangers.


5th step:  Sort clothes to get rid of.

Some of my clothes got donated and some are going to be consigned and sold.  I separated them into piles and took the stuff to be donated right away before it got stashed somewhere and forgotten about.  The clothes to consign needed to be hung nicely and taken to the store or put online.


6th step:  Hang clothes to keep on new hangers.

This is a fun part.  It’s exciting to get stuff back in the closet and make it look really nice.


7th step:  Put clothes back in closet and organize.

Some people organize their closet by color, but that stressed me out.  I organize mine by type of shirt — starting with tank tops, then short sleeve, 3/4 length, long sleeves, sweaters, skirts, and dresses.  However you organize your closet doesn’t matter, just make it neat and systematic in a way that works for you.


closet clean out during


8th step:  Step back and admire your work!

It’s a really good feeling to see a project get completed.  This is one that you could do for free — and in fact, could even make money on if you sell some of your old clothes!

clean closet



closet organized
[I don’t usually keep Junior Mints in my closet, but since it is right next to my bathroom and we are in the throes of potty training, this is a good, high place for them.]


I know this seems extreme, and it kind of is.  But I have felt for a long time that we just have too much stuff.  There is no reason I need a closet busting at the seems with clothes.  It is just plain excessive.  But knowing that and doing something about it are two different things.  So I am glad that I was encouraged to go ahead and take on this project.  If you are interested in this but don’t want to do 40 hangers, that is fine!  Just cut down to a number that works for you — 50, 75, 100, whatever.



A few practical tips —

~ I kept a lot of staple shirts, meaning shirts that I can wear year round with different pants, skirts, sweaters, etc. to get a different look

~ I used a long 5 in 1 pant hanger for my pants and I don’t count that as one of my forty hanger

~ I folded some sweaters and sweatshirts and keep them in a bin on a shelf

~ My blue jeans and t shirts are in drawers in my chest

~ I bought new hangers for Tommy’s side of the closet too.  He decided to get rid of a lot of his shirts as well.



I also bought these organizational shelves at Target, knowing it would help us to put things up there and keep our closet better organized.


I definitely encourage you to try to par down your closet.  It feels great to walk into a clean, closet and not have to part the seas to get a shirt out to wear.  I also don’t have as hard of a time getting dressed in the morning because since I only have 40 items, I like everything I have!  I used to stand in my closet thinking I had nothing to wear, but now I can walk right in and quickly pick something out because they’re all my favorites.



Another project down in #healthyandorganized2014 and I am loving the way it feels to get rid of stuff and be more organized!



the 40 hanger project


Have you done any big organizing projects lately?  Have you gotten rid of a lot of clothes before?  How many clothes are in your closet?  I want to hear!


my video on local news + happy 1st day of spring.

This morning I was on local news WVLT Channel 8 talking about cleaning, organizing, and getting rid of stuff.  It falls right in line with mine and Becca’s hashtag of #healthyandorganized2014!  Here is the video of this morning’s segment.  Pardon my awkwardness 🙂


Just click the link below to see the video of the segment that showed on the morning news today.


Next week I am going to post about the 40 Hanger Project, which is what I talked about on this segment.


This has been a busy week around here.  It’s spring break around these parts, so I thought we would be bored crazy but we’ve had a lot going on so that’s not the case.  Plus, I realized pretty early on this week that we were going to need some solid plans to make it through the week without a lot of TV or driving each other up the wall.

Monday we watched Frozen [which we have seen well over a dozen times now, and I’m totally ok watching it, too, because it really is great].  Tuesday we watched Frozen again.  Maybe more than once :/  I’m not a perfect mom.  But we also got out and did stuff those days.  We spent most of the day getting things done, running errands, and visiting people.  Tuesday was wild.  Crazy busy day.  I had packed it full from morning to evening — very, very late evening.  We did a lot of fun things and some business-type things, and it was great.  I also got to share about T18 and our story on the Knoxville Moms Blog on Tuesday.  Head over there and check out my post about  all of that that I wrote for KMB.

Wednesday morning I did the shoot for the news segment.  Guys, I am fairly confident that I am not the best person to have someone come film their closet.  Seriously.  My closet is nothing special, but I did get rid of A LOT of clothes, and it feels awesome.  I will share more details on my big closet clean out next week.


And today is the first day of spring.  It has been overcast all week and today the sun in shining!  So brightly.  It just feels like spring now.  Hopefully we can get some outside time in today.  Especially since as I write this Jack is jumping up and down on the couch.  Boys.


Spring is here

Happy first day of spring!  I hope it’s beautiful wherever you are.

organizing the chest.

We didn’t have a TV in our bedroom until last April.  Tommy gave it to me as an early birthday present because I was almost bedridden while I was pregnant with Gabriel because I felt so physically bad.  We experimented with where to put it and ended up rearranging some furniture so we could put it up on the chest and out of Jack’s reach.  The satellite box was a challenge because there was no way it was going to fit on top of the chest, too, so Tommy got creative.  He took out the top drawer of the chest and we placed the Dish box in there.  It works really well for us and looked alright except on the left side where junk would just pile up.


Nikon D3200 176

Tired of the junk, I went on a search for something to help organize this area.  If we still lived in the DC area I definitely would have started at the Container Store but no such thing around these parts.  So I went to my favorite store – Target – and found this tray.


Nikon D3200 183

I love the way this tray looks.  It’s sophisticated and fun, and I knew it would look great in our bedroom.  So it came home with me.


Nikon D3200 954

It works as a nice area to hold the Wii, remote controls, and a few other random things.


This project took me less than 5 minutes and makes a big difference in how that area looks.  Just one reason why I love organizing – it makes a big impact!

organizing Christmas cards.

Today I want to share what I’ve been working on lately when it comes to the organizational aspect of #healthyandorganized2014


How I organize Christmas cards… 

I love Christmas cards.  So much.  I hang them up all over our living room.  I love seeing greetings and pictures of our friends and family during the holiday season!  I also can’t stand to throw them out after Christmas.  They’re so beautiful!  The likelihood of me looking through them in the future is low, but I like to know I can if I wanted to.  [This is so not like me, by the way.  I usually throw most things out – I’m not a pack rat.  But Christmas cards are my weakness.] 

 Nikon D3200 004

Here are our cards this year hung up in the living room and dining room.  Please excuse the huge mess and misplaced furniture.  I remembered I needed to take a picture before I took cards down during the middle of construction and painting. 


To keep all of the cards from each year together, I tie them together with ribbon. 


It’s a very simple way for me to keep a lot of cards organized. 

Here’s what I do: 
1.  Gather supplies – ribbon, whole punch, scissors, and cards. 

Nikon D3200 001


2.  Hole punch each card and stack them. 

Nikon D3200 002 


3.  Thread ribbon through and tie it together. 

     Nikon D3200 003


It easily stores in my storage closet. 



Does anyone else store Christmas cards?  Or organize them?  Or am I alone in this one?  🙂 

organized friday.

Since it’s been a week since I shared about #healthyandorganized2014 I thought it might be time for an update.  The healthy aspect is not doing awesome.  Between wedding craziness last week and weekend and an autoimmune flare I’m in this week, I’ve got little to brag about.  I’m trying to take some small steps, but it’s just not going awesome.  Baby steps, right?  Small changes.  That’s what I always told patients.  Trying to remember that advice for myself. 


On the other hand, I am making good progress getting organized.  Things are getting cleaned up and back in shape in my house after a super messy and disorganized home last week.  We had construction going on in our living and dining rooms, meaning not only were they messy but we couldn’t use them for a week.  So other rooms got messy, too.  This week is definitely feeling better. 


My specific organizing piece that has helped me out so far this year is my planner.  I love to plan – probably too much.  Even as a kid I loved planners.  I loved when I would get to pick out a new planner each year.  Had to get all those 3rd grade homework assignments and sleepovers straight.  Last year I got an awesome planner that worked really well for me, but it wasn’t the perfect fit for what I needed.  I did some more research and ordered a new planner for this year.  And I love it!  It’s working out really well ten days in to the year. 


My planner helps me to keep my life organized.  I can write down appointments, play dates, lunches, what I’m fixing for dinner, and my to-dos.  For me, in order for the rest of my life to be organized, I have to start by being organized in my planning.  Otherwise, I have no direction and it just turns in to chaos. 




How I use my planner: 

On Sunday, I write out plans for the week, as well as dinner plans for each night.  Then I make specific plans for Monday.  Each morning I go over my planner and add in the things I need to do that day.  Then I check them off throughout the day.  Each night I sit down and review the day, and plan for the next one.  It doesn’t take very much time, and for me it makes a big difference as to whether my week runs smoothly or not. 



So what about you?  Are you a planner?  Does this post stress you out big time?  Do you think I’m crazy or are you just like me?