What Is Your Best Easy Organizing Tip?
Real Simple readers share their tricks for keeping everything in order.
Huntington, New York
I wrap my holiday gifts in groups by paper: silver for my sister, gold for my brother, and red for my in-laws. I know exactly
what to grab when we’re heading out.
I bought a shoe holder to store charging cables and the small accessories for my cell phone, MP3 player, digital camera, etc.
I hang it over a closet door and simply label each pocket.
I use a pant hanger with rubber-covered rungs that swing out to organize my jewelry. I slip rings on the first rung, bracelets
on the second, and necklaces on the third. I just swing out a rung to take the item of my choice.
Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Quite by accident, I developed an almost pleasant way to declutter: I learned to putter. I loaded my iPod with songs I like
(that’s key) and just walked around picking things up, tidying, humming, and dancing like a fool, but getting things done―and
at a faster pace than I had expected. Puttering is productive, it doesn’t seem like work, and it sounds so much better than
Last Christmas my friend and I decided to forgo the usual gifts and give each other five hours of our time instead. I helped
her clean her bedroom closet, and she helped me clean my basement. We had fun, saved money, and made a lot of progress.
I keep a bag in the trunk of my car, and I slowly fill it with items for charity. When I run across a pair of shoes or a toy
my children have outgrown, a shirt I no longer wear, or a paperback I’m ready to pass on, I take it to the car and drop it
in the bag. Sometimes it takes a week, sometimes more, but the bag eventually gets filled and dropped off at the nearest donation
site. My children are aware of the bag, and I think it has provided them with a valuable lesson in giving and recycling.
With a family of six, I find a dry-erase calendar essential. Each family member has a different-color marker so we can see
at a glance who needs to be where and when.