OK, Folks. I admit it. Having a toddler and a newborn is no joke and I am a bit in over my head with managing it all gracefully. Between all of my family obligations and running my own business I recently found myself swamped with non-stop plans and activity and needed a new system to keep it all straight. Enter….”The Daily Docket”!!
I have been trying to figure out the perfect calendar system for quite sometime. I am not a techie and like to see things on paper but it was becoming a challenge to update my calendar in pen whenever plans shifted. Also, I needed a place for the lists of to-dos that are always running through my head…buy stamps, return jeans, pack lunch, etc. After a lot of trial and error I discovered The Daily Docket – A free download from the author of Organized Simplicity. (My fave book on organization + simple living).
This brilliant sheet of paper includes space for your daily appointments and activities but also has a place to record your dinner plans, workout goal, food + water log, daily inspiration, blog and/or work ideas and miscellaneous notes throughout the day. In addition, the Daily Docket includes a place to jot down your three “Most Important Tasks” (or MITs) for the day. With a list as long as mine, it’s so helpful to be forced to prioritize each day. Then, whatever I don’t get done by the end of the day gets transferred to the next day’s log. I am breathing easier already. Ahhhhh. ~
I’m loving the lightweight design and the rope handles. I snatched up two and plan to use clear luggage tags to label one”Returns” and the other “Donations.” The Return basket will include items that need to go back to friends or family as well as store returns. Donations will include clothing and household items that I want to give to charity or my daughter’s pre-school. The genius thing is that they can store a ton of stuff and when they are full I can just throw them in my trunk and take care of business.
Recently, my good friend, Sierra, asked me to do a post on handbag storage.
Bag storage is challenging because women love to switch bags and rotate the contents, and also need a good place to store the one in use. They usually end up in a huge pile in the closet or draped over random door knobs. This simply will not do!
My first idea was to make the switching itself easier. I spotted these lovely pouches from Baggu and thought one of them would fit all the necessities: mobile phone, make-up, keys and wallet. Now it would be easy to switch from bag to bag since the daily essentials are contained in a single pouch!
Now, how to store the bags? If you have lots of space in your entry way Pottery Barn carries a great selection of storage furniture. I was drawn to the big drawers in this unit which would make concealed handbag storage a breeze.
If you need a solution for smaller spaces I like this hanging holder from Amazon.com:
If you are truly short on storage space (like me!) I am convinced that hooks are the way to go. One durable over-the-door hook will do the trick for the bag of the moment and wall-mounted hooks will take care of storing the rest.
Also loving this modern option from Blu Dot for hanging and displaying multiple bags.
Finally, I am considering this super durable over the door stroller hook for my big, heavy mama bag. I bought a beautiful storage bench thinking I would toss it in, but it’s just not proving to be practical. I am in and out so many times a day I need my bag to be easy to grab and store.
Can you already feel the craziness in the air? I’m trying to keep it simple this year. Way simple.
In an attempt to tackle holiday gift giving in the most efficient way possible I am dividing my gift buying into three categories:
Closest Family + Friends: I will take one day to go shopping for personal, meaningful gifts for the closest few in my circle.
Friends + Colleagues: This year I am buying one simple gift for everyone else. I am thinking a glass votive holder and some home-made candies or sweets tied with a pretty ribbon. I will set aside one day to fetch the candles and another for baking and packaging with my two-year old. Done and done!
Hostess Gifts: I always find myself racing around at the last-minute to grab a bottle of wine to bring to dinner. This year, I am going to make a list of all of our holiday events and buy my hostess gifts in bulk. I will purchase a variety of simple gifts that we can bring: Nice wine, hand soap, olive oils, etc. I plan to put them in a large basket by our front coat closet so we can literally grab + go!
How will you simplify your gift giving this season?
Many of my clients have small children and ask for my recommendations for storing kid toys. I always advise them to first assess what their kids really love and play with often. Kids get overwhelmed by having too much clutter just as adults do, and it is up to you to curb the shopping and help them edit! Once you have decided what can go, I suggest donating the rest to your favorite charity or shelter.
Now that you have picked the faves it is time to organize and store them. Luggage tags are great for labeling the contents or you can use laminated labels or even print pictures. Combine like items to keep it simple. For example, everything with wheels can be labeled “Things That Go” and placed together in one bin. I love storing our bins on this simple Pottery Barn bookshelf so my daughter can pull out her toys and clean up by herself.
There are so many bins on the market now ranging in price and style.
With time at an all time minimum I have been on the prowl for quick delicious ways to feed myself and my family. My brother is an incredibly talented chef and has taught me that everything tastes better if you add butter, shallots and fresh herbs. He also taught me this easy formula for yummy salads: Always add a cheese, a fruit and a nut! He makes a mean blueberry salad with candied pecans and goat cheese. Also loving almonds, cherries and Parmesan.
My new go-to easy dish is fresh pasta with olive oil, garlic and lots of black pepper, Parmesan, and parsley. It literally takes ten minutes to make and my whole family loves it. You can also toss in prosciutto or fresh veggies for variation.
I also have become obsessed with Gabi Moskowitz’s food & lifestyle blog which offers simple tasty recipes on a shoestring budget.