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New Year, New You: Getting Organized

By Leslie Lindsay

Most folks hate the calm after the storm….they hate the quietness, the gray dreary days of January.  I, for one happen to like it.  And here’s why:  it’s a great time to get organized.  Plus, it’s sort of fun to “play” with your new things (or your kids’ new things).

So, here are a few ideas to get you going:

  • Clear out all of your files.  It’s great way to feel a bit lighter—hey, you may still have 10 lbs of Christmas cookies to burn off, but getting out from all of that paperwork is sure to make you feel a little lighter (not only that, but it helps prepare for tax season, which is right around the corner).
  • While you’re at it, go ahead and clear out your wardrobe.  You know, those dorky sweaters you were hanging on to for the annual “ugly sweater contest,” well…it’s over, go ahead and toss ’em.  Be honest about your size…if you haven’t wore it in a season or two thinking you’ll lose weight, drop it off at the the nearest Good Will.  (Tip: we only wear 20% of 80% of the the things that hang in the closet…don’t ask me about how this works mathematically, just something I heard).
  • If you find that you just aren’t happy with a purchase, take it back–recent purchase and receipt not always required.  Some places have 100% satisfaction guarantee (L.L. Bean, Eddie Bauer, Clarks Shoes to name a couple).  I just called LLBean and complained about an advent calendar I actually used all December just didn’t have the chance to call and complain.  The receptionist was kind and reminded me of their guarantee.  Guess what’s shipping out in tomorrow’s mail?
  • Throw out your old undies.  Yes, you read that right.  This time of year is great for purchasing end-of-the-year steals for your intimate drawer…men’s tee-shirts, socks, P.J.s often go on sale this time of year, too.
  • Same goes for bedding and linens…
  • While it’s still cold in many parts of the U.S. this time of year, you’ll be amazed when retailers pull out their brightly-hued spring collection.  Don’t be tempted!  (unless of course you are headed to warmer climates soon).  Instead, grab a few steals on the clearance rack–you know, all of those cute and cozy winter things you eyed in December but didn’t find under the tree?
  • Now may also be a good time to start sorting through your kiddo’s stuff, too.  Clothing, shoes, toys and books…what are they really into?  What are they really using?  If things seem too babyish, too stained, too worn, it’s time to throw ’em out.

“New Year, New You” will be January’s Friday column.  Stay tuned for more ideas on decorating, meal planning, and staying organized.

Happy 2012 and Happy Weekend!

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