Growing Up Organized

Guest contributor Lorraine Brock shares how childhood prepared her for her career as The Organized Mom
j0430776.jpegWhen I was a little girl my mom often gave family friends a tour of my bedroom. My bedroom was the most organized and clean space in our home and I was the teenager. I remember clearly one year that I had requested my birthday gift to be a room makeover. Thinking the first step was painting the walls, I was told the paint color I chose was off limits. So instead I chose to paint the inside of my reach-in closet; a small space but never-the-less it gave me the freedom to use color.
My decorating skills were good, but what my parents and others saw in me were my incredible organizing skills. I could organize and put together anything. I would plan and organize back to school parties, organize small spaces to hold lots of items, and early on I even started budgeting with my humble allowance. Then one day I decided I wanted to get a job. I walked from my childhood home in Garland, Texas to the main street near my home where many fast food restaurants were located. I walked into my first interview at Long John Silver’s™ without knowing how to prepare or even telling my parents what I was doing. While I did not land that job, I did at the very next interview at Bonanza Steakhouse®.
While walking was my main source of transportation, I decided I would learn how to use the local Dart transit system. I began taking the bus to friends that lived across town and to the mall and at times I even hired a taxi to get me where I needed to be…all using my own money and my own know how.
I had a very healthy home life and my parents gave me a large amount of responsibility around the home even while I worked part-time, attended school, and had extracurricular activities. My responsibilities included all the household laundry, ironing, unloading the dishwasher, gardening, and mowing our entire, extremely large, yard.
Now that I am all grown up, I can look back and see how accepting responsibilities and my upbringing has placed me in a career as a Professional Organizer. I can see the traits starting at a young age that I mirrored from watching my father. He was, and still is, very organized. Dad always worked from a calendar and planned ahead for everything. Even to this day my dad starts thinking of what to purchase as a baby gift for his great grandchild at just the announcement of the pregnancy.
So why are your kids organized….. or not? It might be because of your habits and lifestyle. As parents you play a major role in influencing your children to acquire these skills and habits. Often parents decide that it is easier to do things themselves than to teach their children how to manage responsibilities. Remember that handling responsibilities well as children helps them become responsible adults.
As a busy mom, I need all the help I can get keeping my home picked up, clean and organized, and I want to raise my boys to be young men of honor, courage and yes, to be organized. Given the opportunity, they will figure out with time and practice how to balance the responsibilities with having fun. Set clear expectations, give them the right tools, avoid giving into their complaints, and be upfront with the consequences of not accomplishing their tasks.
Take it from me, whether your child is organizing a lemonade stand, a party, or their room, organizing is an important skill that will follow your child into college, their first apartment, a future home, and their workplace. Instilling this skill in your child will be a great way your child can stand out amongst their peers and create a successful future.
Lorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and president and founder of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes for moms as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
Description: Description: LB-EmailBW.jpegA popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox , and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, Mercator.net, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. Additionally, Lorraine has shared the stage with stars from HGTV and DYI Network at the Great Big Texas Home Show at the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. To obtain more information about Lorraine, visit www.GetOrganized.ws.

Rise & Shine with The Organized Mom

MB900442483[1].JPGIt’s back to school time and I hear the sound of the school bells ringing in the distance. Oh wait, that’s my kid’s alarm clock….and yet I hear no sounds of my child actually getting up.
Why is it that some parents still have to get up to wake their kids even when the kids have an alarm clock? If the kids can ignore the sound of the alarm, why can’t parents do the same? I value any day that I can keep my head on my pillow a little longer even when other members of my family have to get up. I actually dread the back to school hours with the morning birds tweeting way too early for me. My kids and I are late nighters and seem to be able to accomplish more during the evening hours than in the daylight.
Nevertheless, early morning wake up calls are here again. I have to admit that for many years, I did the dance of setting my alarm clock to go off just to wake up my kids even when their alarm clocks were going off. Sounds strange I know … but a few years ago I put a stop to that. I decided that instead of me suffering from the unnecessary early rising, I would require the kids to go to bed earlier and earlier each night until they were able to get out of bed themselves for school.
MP900430984[1].JPGThere are some kids that need a more creative solution to waking up with an alarm clock. If your child still uses a nightlight, you might want to consider an alarm clock with a blue digital display. Blue brightens the room more than a standard red display… sort of a moonlight look. Does your child like music or need a loud alarm sound or could they use a phone charging station that also acts as an alarm?
I have found a few favorite alarm clocks that are almost guaranteed to get any sleepy child out of bed. They are called the Clocky and Sonic Boom. The Clocky, my personal favorite, is the patented alarm clock that jumps 3 feet off your nightstand and runs away beeping to get you up. You can only snooze it once, so after that, the sleeper has to get out of bed and turn it off.
The Sonic Boom alarm clocks are said to “wake even the deepest sleeper!” They are turbo charged, extra loud, and some even have a bed shaking device. Sometime it takes extreme measures to wake extreme sleepers.
The Sonic Boom alarm clocks are said to “wake even the deepest sleeper!” They are turbo charged, extra loud, and some even have a bed shaking device. Sometime it takes extreme measures to wake extreme sleepers.
During my childhood I was always diligent about getting out of bed on my own and on time. However, my two older brothers were not. I remember my mom getting a small amount of water in a cup and pouring it over them while they were sleeping. I stood there just waiting for their reaction and while it was not much water at all, when you are sleeping and something wet falls on your face or chest … you wake up in a hurry.
So whether you have been using a creative mom dance with tambourines or a small cup of water to get your child out of bed, it’s time to try these or other creative alarm clocks. Start training your child now to get up each morning on their own so you can stay in your bed a little longer.
Lorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and president and founder of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes for moms as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
Description: Description: LB-EmailBW.jpegA popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox , and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, Mercator.net, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. Additionally, Lorraine has shared the stage with stars from HGTV and DYI Network at the Great Big Texas Home Show at the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. To obtain more information about Lorraine, visit www.GetOrganized.ws.

Packing for Vacation with the Organized Mom

Organization expert Lorraine Brock gives our readers great tips on packing for your next vacation…

MP900446447[1].JPGMy family is about to go on a long overdue and much needed vacation. Nothing extraordinary but something fun for our family… a cruise. This cruise is one of the best vacation values I have ever found. With five in our family and four eating like the men they are, the endless food supply on cruises is worth its weight in gold.
Our trip is still a month away and I am already beginning to get things organized. I have contacted a neighbor to take care of our dog and pick up our mail, asked a family member to water plants, and have arranged for someone to take our responsibilities at church while we are away.
MP900305798[1].JPGI have begun buying and collecting items that we will need on our cruise that many families forget and thus pay extra for once on board. Some of these items are swim shoes, a waterproof container to hold ID’s, room cards, and even cash. Floatation devices are another thing we have spent top dollar for and then could not bring them home. We buy the cheap ones here at home, and then air them up when on the beach. When our day is over we leave them on the beach or at the pool for someone else to use since they would be a hassle to deflate and repack.
WP_000356 (1).jpgTravelling with five people and a lot of luggage, I get creative in making sure we can locate our bags quickly in a sea of mostly black cases. Instead of reading all the luggage tags, I use bold colored duct tape to wrap around the handle or make an “X” on the front or back. This allows our bags to stand out. See the photo showing the colors available when I was shopping at Michaels craft store.
Do you hate filling out those paper identification tags at the airport? If you have a business card you might want to consider placing your business card in the luggage tag holder. This is a simple and effortless way to include your contact information on your luggage.
My final suggestion is about spending money. We give each person in our family their own spending money for the trip a few minutes before we leave. The amount depends on the kind of year it has been….lean or mean. The money is placed in envelopes for each child and they can choose to spend the money on the trip or save it for something else. This prevents me from having to approve or monitor every purchase. On a prior trip one of my sons spent all his money on video game machines while another brought back money to spend on something at home. This is a way to teach our children to manage and budget their money for the things they want. They have to make wise decisions to make the money last the entire week of vacation.
One of my boys, our fashion king, has already decided how to spend his money: island jewelry, maybe a watch, a beach towel, and t-shirts. I am sure he will come back with nada in his pockets, but instead be filled with happy memories stored up until our next family vacation.
Lorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and president and founder of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes for moms as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
Description: Description: LB-EmailBW.jpegA popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox , and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, Mercator.net, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. Additionally, Lorraine has shared the stage with stars from HGTV and DYI Network at the Great Big Texas Home Show at the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. To obtain more information about Lorraine, visit www.GetOrganized.ws.

Camping Trip Essentials with the Organized Mom

MR900422645[1].JPGPlanning on taking a camping trip soon in this wonderful spring weather? In my Organized Mom blog post this month, I will share with you useful ideas for organizing your trip from what to pack, locations to camp, and of course having fun around the campfire.
You may wonder at the logic of a campfire in the heat of spring and summer, but a camping trip is not complete without at least an evening fire to make s’mores. There is something so relaxing and awe inspiring about gathering around a campfire with family or friends enjoying this delicious treat.
Since most of us cannot burn a fire in our backyard, heading out to a state or national park or even private land is the best alternative. Here are the top 10 state parks in the United States.
With over 58 national parks and hundreds more state parks, you are sure to find one that fits your schedule and camping needs. The websites above will direct you to information on location, weather, and facilities. The cost of camping is minimal and when you have to watch your vacation budget, it’s the best bang for your buck. For example, a family can camp in a shelter at the Glimmerglass State Park in New York for $50-$100 a weekend plus entrance fees. Save even more money by purchasing a National or State Parks Pass for a one-time fee and avoid the daily entrance fees in all the state parks in your state.
Most parks have nature experts who hold classes inside the park to educate campers on what birds and animals live within their park grounds and during some seasons larger activities are planned for younger campers. Just remember each state has vastly different amenities and activities all depending on what part of the country you reside. This creates plenty of options for families and individual campers.
Once you’ve found a place to camp, it’s time to start packing. I suggest making a Master List for camping on your computer. Divide up your list into three categories: Camping Supplies, Food, and Personal Items. Be sure to add to and update this list as needed. When you’re ready to go camping, print your list and use it as a checklist… no need to recreate it each time.
Here are a few sometime forgotten items to include on your list:
Tent stakes
Mallet for hammering the tent stakes
Tablecloth
Tablecloth clips for windy days
Clothesline to dry clothing and towels
Clothespins (endless uses)
Oven mitts
Tongs for cooking
Plenty of trash bags
Dishpan for washing dishes
Ziploc bags (endless uses)
Games/Cards
Sunscreen
Batteries
Broom and dustpan for sweeping out your tent or shelter
Now that you know where you are going and you are packed and ready, the only thing left is to plan some fun when you are camping. Watch my video blog to learn this great campsite game. Everyone gathers around the fire or an open area sitting on the ground or in camp chairs. Only a few players know the rules of the game. The object of the game is to get the other players to say the correct phrase and that can only happen if they clue in on the hands of each person. It starts with going around the circle and each person saying one of these three phrases, “One up, one down”, “Two up” or “Two down.” There are no other answers.
The answers depend on where their hands are (see video). For the people that have no idea how to play the game, they are uncertain how to get the correct answer. At first they guess, but as time progresses they look for patterns, of which there are none. After some time, everyone begins to get the clues that determine the correct phrase.
Taking a camping trip is one of the best ways to explore a simpler life. Afternoons yield themselves to a nap in the hammock, hiking trails, and families playing games at the picnic table. As an Organized Mom there is just something about getting away for a few days and allowing everyone to unplug from the cell phones, laptops, and iPods. Take the time to schedule a camping trip for your family and enjoy great rewards.

Lorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and president and founder of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes for moms as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
Description: Description: LB-EmailBW.jpegA popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox , and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, Mercator.net, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. Additionally, Lorraine has shared the stage with stars from HGTV and DYI Network at the Great Big Texas Home Show at the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium. To obtain more information about Lorraine, visit www.GetOrganized.ws.

Five Home Office Decorating Ideas

The Organized Mom shares more great tips on how to decorate your hom office in style…

iStock_000002002250XSmall.jpgIn my last blog post I talked about organizing your home office with style and functionality. Here are five more tips that I’m dying to share with you.
1. Meeting area – Place a small lounge chair and table in your office. This creates a multipurpose area for a business meeting or as a place to take a break for a glass of tea or a power nap.
2. Wall color – Office walls do not have to be boring white. Use an off white color such as Khaki to add sophistication while keeping the space clean, light, and calming during those busy times of deadlines and phone calls. Add accessories in bold colors that make you feel productive.
3. Greenery – Plants always warm up a room. If your decorating skills are limited, place at least two types of fake ivy in a decorative vase, weaving them together for a natural look. If you want real plants that do not require a green thumb, try English ivy. This plant tolerates indoor lighting and temperatures, and all it needs is a little water. Pick a nice pot in your favorite accent color and protect the surface of your desk or table from water spills.
4. Timer – If you have a hard time managing the clutter on your desk, use a timer to spend 15 minutes each morning returning items to their appropriate places. Do this again at the end of the day.
5. Special greetings – A great space saver for your office is SendOutCards. Instead of having a box of cards and stamps that you can’t seem to find when you need them, use this online service to send greetings to your clients. Create the card with just the right message and the company prints, stuffs, stamps, and mails the card for you.
I love style and I love function and with these great tips your office will now have both. Until my next post, get those home offices organized.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized.!

5 Home Office Organizing Ideas

00444155.jpg5 Organizing Ideas to make your Home Office Function with Style by the Organized Mom
· Decorative bulletin board – Find a board that is nicely framed and use it to post account numbers, codes, or your FIN (Federal Identification Number). When you need this information, it only takes a glance instead of searching your files or computer. The frame also makes this tool look like art.
· Corner desk – Some people like facing their office door, but this can be very distracting when pets or people walk by. A corner desk offers a lot of extra surface and storage space and takes up far less square footage than a desk in the middle of the room.
· Decorative boxes – If your desk does not offer much storage space, use decorative boxes to organize additional office supplies. These boxes hold the not-so-pretty extra office supplies you do not need in your desk now. When you purchase supplies such as Post It notes or pens and notepads in large quantities keep a few in or on your desk, and the rest in the storage boxes. When your supply gets low, the extras are hidden, but close at hand.
· Letter trays – Letter trays are often used on desks to hold papers that are just postponed decisions. Weeks and months of collecting will produce a pile of clutter so overwhelming that you feel paralyzed to do anything about it. Use letter trays to only hold items you use for daily tasks such as notebook for Passwords, directories, tablets, envelopes, and a business card binder.
· Electronic cord organizer – Organize the mess of cords on top of, down the sides, and behind your desk with the line of SIGNUM cable management products from IKEA.
Check back on my next post for another 5 Great Ideas for making your home office function with style.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized.!

Heartfelt Advice from The Organized Mom

FIVE_LOVE_LANGUAGES.jpgSince Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, I wanted to share in this post a book that has made an impact in my life. It’s a book that I have used in my own marriage and the overall idea in my relationship with my three teenage sons.
I would describe this book as one of the key factors in understanding how to show love to someone, the kind of love that someone would respond to.
I often hear stories of how one person in a relationship tries and tries to fire up his or her relationship, but it frequently falls flat. Large amounts of preparation and effort are made; and then the other person, for whatever reason, does not respond the way the other had hoped. Sometimes this can ultimately make the one trying, stop trying because it seems to make no difference.
The book is called The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. It is so well written; I frequently recommend this book to couples in unhappy relationships.
The 5 Love Languages mentioned in the book are:
Words of Affirmation: Giving verbal compliments.
Quality Time: Giving someone your undivided attention.
Receiving Gifts: A gift is something you can hold in your hand and say, “Look, he/she was thinking of me.” or, “He/she remembered me.
Acts of Service: Doing things you know your spouse would like you to do.
Physical Touch: Holding hands, kissing, embracing, and sexual intercourse are all ways of communicating emotional love to one’s spouse.
If you need a great idea for Valentine’s Day this year, get this book and read it. Then together list what you think the other person’s love language is. More often than not, we get it wrong. People tend to love someone else the way they want to be loved and not necessarily how the other person needs to feel loved.
After knowing each other’s love language, you will be expressing love to the person you love, in their language. To order book go to The 5 Love Languages.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized.!

Setting Goals with Your Kids from the Organized Mom

Gather round the dinner table and make your New Year’s Resolutions with your kids, says the Organized Mom, Lorraine Brock

iStock_000014631526XSmall.jpgWhy is it that when the new year comes around, adults have plenty of New Year’s goals but we often don’t include the entire family? Maybe it’s because we consider our kids goals as unimportant or worse, they don’t have a vision for themselves. It’s true in some cases that a child’s goal can be totally off the mark of self help or betterment, like obtaining the next level in a video game or making a wish list of superficial items they want to gain the next year, but with some direction from parents kids can set goals at every level.
In our home, my husband and I have three teenage boys. Each year around New Year’s, we whip out the pen and paper and set down together to discuss our goals. This could be done around the dinner table or by having a quiet moment around the fire.
In order to get our boys started we try to have three main categories for which to set goals; school, personal, and spiritual. This does not mean they can only have three goals; on the contrary they can have as many goals as they want. But we do ask them to make an effort in improving at least one thing in each of these categories.
For example, our youngest son last year listed the following as his goals:
· B+ or higher in Math
· Walk Strider (our dog) and play ball with him more
· Bond more with dad (Dad time)
· Being a more Godly and polite young man
While this seems like a pretty mature list of goals, it did not start out that way. If I recall leveling on a game or buying a new game topped the list at first. But with the direction of what goal setting really was about and the importance our family unit placed on it, the light began to immerge in that little brain.
Once we had our goals there needed to be some accountability throughout the year. I know it’s hard for adults to stay focused, much less a child. So periodically throughout the year we bring the goals out to see the progress we had or had not made. I would suggest that you put on your calendar “check goals” about three times during the year. This will ensure you don’t forget to have periodic goal checks.
You’re probably wondering how many goals my three boys actually follow through on, well I will share. Our youngest met three of his four goals, our middle son meet all of his goals, and our oldest met half of one goal, out of four. Over all pretty great results, I’d say.
Just a note of advice that when reviewing the goals, just as with setting them up, you go over them as a family; it’s accountability. Yes, you will probably have one that is a little slack in meeting some of their goals, but if done with love and much encouragement he or she will see the benefit and growth in their siblings and want to jump aboard.
As always goal setting is best done as a family, so that others around you can help you meet those goals. Not to mention written goals can be treasures now and for the future; allowing each family member a glimpse back in time.
Lastly, goal setting each year allows your child to see where they have been and are today, with the added bonus of seeing the process of getting there. They being to see over time that every decision they make needs to help them get closer to their goals. It teaches them to question why they are doing what they are doing.
For example if your child has a goal of wanting to work with animals, should they be volunteering in a junior officers program? If that’s their only time to volunteer, I’d say the better choice would be to find a local veterinary clinic, city pound, zoo or other animal facility to volunteer at. Trying always to keep what you’re doing in alignment with your goals.
So grab a cup of coffee for you and hot chocolate for the kids, and then spend some time helping each other set their goals. You will see over time that each person’s goals normally become their passion and purpose.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized!

Organized Thanksgiving Entertainment

j0409578.jpgWith Thanksgiving only a few days away, let’s get you organized with some added ingredients that will spice up your Thanksgiving family time. These ideas will get your entire family sharing around your Thanksgiving dinner table by playing some simple games and activities.
To start, come up with several trivia questions that both young and old can answer. For example, find trivia questions about the first Thanksgiving including historical facts or traditions that have been passed down through our country. A few trivia questions that come to mind are, “Which President issued the first Thanksgiving Day proclamation?” or “What food was served at the first Thanksgiving feast?” or facts pertaining to the writings in the first Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1863. For most kids, this will be an area where they will probably dominate and ultimately win since they have recently learned facts concerning Thanksgiving in the classroom.
Creating other ways to get the entire family sharing doesn’t always have to be about Thanksgiving. Tell family stories about your most embarrassing moment or your high and low for the year.
At our home when it comes to eating Thanksgiving dinner, everyone sits in random spots. I have taken advantage of this in recent years and have placed a small gift card under one of the many chairs seated around the table. Towards the end of the meal, I ask everyone to look under his or her chair. Surprise! Someone receives a small gift.
One of my favorite memories during the holidays is when we get out our old 8mm film to watch (our silent but colored movies). My older brother often comically narrates the silent movement on each person’s lips and adlibs what the other person might be saying. We never really know for sure what is being said in our home movies. So all my memories of what is actually going on are probably skewed. However, it has been fun not only to see and remember the stories of when I was younger, but to laugh at all the hilarious stories my brother adlibbed…. whether they are true or not.
This Thanksgiving, try serving up some great fun by digging out your home videos and cooking up some interesting questions around your Thanksgiving table.
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IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized!

Are you Cooking up Clutter in Your Kitchen?

The Organized Mom, Lorraine Brock Offers Sound Advice on How we Can Clean up in the Kitchen!
j0430542.jpgIs your kitchen due for an organized makeover? Do packs of ketchup and coupons line your drawers? Are bills, magazines and expired medication stuffed in your cupboards? These are all sure signs of a disorganized kitchen and often an incredibly busy person.
Frequently in the rush of life, people put things where they fit rather than where they belong. Over time, clutter accumulates and spreads … taking up more space than if it were organized.
As a mom, I know that the kitchen is where life unfolds in your home. Meals are eaten, discussions are had and plans are made. Because of this, the kitchen becomes the drop spot for many unrelated items in the home.
Allow me to help you get your kitchen sorted, purged and organized by sharing a few secrets that Professional Organizers do every day.
The first step is to group like items together; pens with pens and batteries with batteries and so on. Once you have sorted all the items in the space you are organizing, then it’s time to purge. Get rid of items that are expired or that you no longer use. It’s ok to let items go…you will love the extra space and will be able to see what you actually have.
Next, assign a space for the remaining items you want to keep. Think about how you use each item. Do you use it daily or rarely? Are you the only one that uses it or do the kids need to be able to reach it?
The fun part of organizing is buying cute containers for containerizing your items. You can buy drawer dividers or repurpose items like Velveeta cheese or cracker boxes for drawer organizers. Look for containers that hold items such as after school snacks or lunch items. Labeling always helps, too.
For pantries, first check the inside of the pantry door. If you’re not already using that space, consider wire shelving or even a clear pocket shoe organizer. This will give you additional storage space. Because containerizing is so much fun; often people over spend on cute and fun organizing products that they really don’t need. So, be careful to not just buy something that’s cute if you have no clue where to use it.
Lastly, once the organizing is complete and everything is back in a home, evaluate where everything is located with your family. Make sure each member knows where the new home is for each item. If you don’t, you might find them digging to find what they are looking for; and that might equal another mess.
Just keep in mind the acronym for these steps is S-P-A-C- E. Sort, Purge, Assign, Containerize, and Evaluate.
IMG_3957_retouched.jpgLorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of “Get Organized!” “Get Organized!” is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. “Get Organized!” specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management.
A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more helpful advice from Lorraine, visit her blog Get Organized!