Function for Production: Moving and Storing Furniture

By guest blogger, Erin Houg:

Moving or storing furniture?  Here are a few tips that might make this process a bit easier, less stressful and more organized.

Furniture Markers:

I have all black furniture.  One reason I love black furniture is because I think it just makes a space look clean.  But black furniture does get nicked.  If that happens all I have to do is grab a Sharpe and color over it.  If you don’t share my same love for black furniture, check out this set of furniture markers that Amazon sells!  Life happens, just color over it!

Wrap cabinets and drawers:

Does the thought of packing your whole home leave you tired and unmotivated?  And then you remember that you have drawers and cabinets too?  Home Depot sells heavy-duty plastic wrap that you can use to wrap those doors and drawers closed.  Leaving them closed and no need to pack them.  Click here to check out Home Depot’s wrap.

Taking apart furniture:

Make sure that all the small pieces that you took off the furniture STAYS with the furniture.  Grab a Ziploc bag and zip up all those screws, nuts and bolts together.  Find an inconspicuous spot and tape your Ziploc to the furniture.  When you are ready to reassemble you know that all your pieces are right there.

Mirrors and Artwork:

Try not to store mirrors and artwork on a flat surface; because of their weight they have the tendency to collapse under their own weight.  Store them upright on their sides when at all possible.

Dryer Sheets:

Boxing up clothes and storing them for any period of time, and in any location, can cause your clothes to pick up the smells around it.  One way to prevent that smell from being a bad one is to add dryer sheets to your clothes boxes.  This will keep your clothes from getting a weird storage smell and keep them smelling fresh.

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Function for Production: Untidy Filing

By guest blogger, Erin Houg:

Do your file cabinets resemble this photo?  Welcome to being busy and not being able to file everything the minute it comes through your front door.  This is a come problem that plagues many households.  Here are a couple of ways to fix this problem.  Try them out!

To Scan or Not to Scan

1.  Scan!  Invest in a scanner.  I understand that we are now using technology more than ever before.  Sometimes I wonder how I functioned without all this technology.  What makes for clean and organized files?  Not having them!  I know some of us have a sentimental attachment to hard copies of documents, but it is time to move on.  When Apple created a storage solution that offered three terabytes of storage called the Time Capsule, I knew that my life was about the change.  Scan all bills, receipts and important documents.  Bills, just in case you need to reference them later, receipts to track expenses and important documents, well, just in case.

Erase and Rewrite

2. I myself have a label maker.  Are you shocked?  Yes, I am obsessed about organized files and I like everything the same, so I bought my own label maker.  Kind of nerdy, I know.  Labeling just makes me happy.  You don’t have to buy a label maker to be organized!  I also have use erasable labels.  Has a new cable company caught your eye with some fancy six-month deal and you are thinking about switching over?  Have no fear!  Erase the old company name and rewrite.  Simple.  Click here for the ones that I found at the Container Store.

Be Practical

3.  Still think you need to file papers?  Be smart about it.  Creating a “to file” folder either on your desk or in your file drawer will keep papers neat.  But they won’t jump into the appropriate files themselves!  Set aside time to put them where they belong and maybe it will help you sleep better at night.

Function for production!

Function for Production: Home Calendar Station

By guest blogger, Erin Houg:

Finding that your kiddos are coming home with all sorts of papers that you didn’t notice until the morning they are needed?  Yeah, it happens every day.  Kids are sent home with newsletters, permission slips and notes from their school.  What should you do with all these stray notes?  Sort them when they arrive!

Now to a minimalist like myself, the picture above of Pottery Barn’s home sorting/mailing/calendar station makes me a bit queasy.  But for those of you that have a need for this, invest in one!  They are sold in many stores.  Click here for Bed Bath & Beyond black wood set they sell at most of their stores.

Before You Buy:

First, figure out what you need to organize.  Do you lose bills before they get paid?  Are your kids active in after school activities?  Make sure that your wall organizers cater to what your family needs.  Maybe for your mail dilemma you need something with sorting boxes, and then label those boxes as “incoming” and “outgoing”.  White board calendar are great for all those after school activities and team games.

Location, Location, Location:

Where you hang this organization center is key.  If it ends up on the garage wall and you can’t even park in your garage due to storage issues, don’t hang it up in there.  You won’t use it!  The point of this system is that you see it, update it and utilize everyday.  That being said you don’t have to hang on your main kitchen wall.  Inside of a pantry, or mudroom, is a great spot.  This allows you to “hide” it when necessary.

Magnetic or Cork?

It doesn’t matter, but find a system with one or the other.  Magnetic and cork boards are great for keeping track of party and wedding invites that you might need again closer to the date.  With these invites come gifts to buy.  Forgot where that couple was registered?  Have no fear!  You pinned the invite on your board!

Utilize this space to its full potential.  Get the whole family involved by showing your kids where to store any papers that come home from school.

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Function for Production: Dear Roman

By guest blogger, Erin Houg:

For those of you that do not know, or do know, I am a minimalist.  I can’t stand clutter.  I like clean lines, things to be black and white and to the point.  The thought of purchasing something else that I have to keep, or hold on to, makes me crazy.

So when I was pregnant, all I could think about what how I was going to chronicle this journey that I “happened” to find myself on.  Daily, pregnancy affected everything I was doing.  The marble floors of our Nation’s capitol building hurt my feet day in and day out; sitting through hearings and meetings was beyond painful.  Yet all I stressed about was how was I going to keep track of everything that happens in “Baby Bean’s” life and not miss a thing.

Late one night I was watching TV and I began to bawl.  I had just seen my answer.  We are a generation that needs, demands and thrives with technology at our fingertips.  And Google captured what I was looking for.  They gave me an alternative option to buying a baby book and keeping track of all of Baby Bean’s amazing life moments.  Google’s suggestion: keep track of everything by creating an email account for your unborn child (or already born) and emailing them their milestones.  If you haven’t seen the commercial, grab a tissue and click here.  I cry every time I see it.  Why?  The whole commercial is based around a dad emailing his first daughter with love notes, and pictures and videos of all of her firsts!

Now, I understand that writing to an unborn child could be awkward for some of you, but start now.  I am not sure that Roman will pour through this email account when he is older and think “wow”, but you know who will?  His wife.  And someday Roman will understand and love everything that is in that email account and everything that is stands for.  I am taking the time to send him all my favorite moments that might have otherwise been sitting in a book to be lost or ruined.

Now this concept might not be for everyone, but it changed my perspective on just what SHOULD happen when I have a baby.  If technology is going to be so prevalent, why not use it to our benefit?  Technology is something that I use everyday, and now I use it to chronicle every moment for Roman to enjoy later.  Here is to fewer books to store and cleaner bookshelves!  Thank you Google!

Sappy moment ending now.

Function for Production!