January 2019 Feature! Stacie Langan

It’s January. Time to take a big, deep breath!

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The weather may still be frightful, but the craziness of the holidays is behind us. January not only marks the start of a New Year, but it’s also a time of new beginnings. For many people, this is a time to reflect on the past year and to set new ambitions for the year ahead.  No matter what your New Year’s Resolutions are, following through can be a daunting task. I encourage you to take baby steps and to keep on walking until you have reached your goal! For example, if your goal is to have a more organized house, tackle one area at a time. You might simply start with one cabinet, then a closet and then a room.

Although everyone is at different places in life, the premise remains the same. Getting Organized saves time, saves money and reduces stress. In this season of life, my organizing systems revolve around the needs of my family, including elementary aged children, so I completely understand that one of the common goals in households with children is to get a handle on paper clutter. Specifically, how to organize all the papers and crafts they bring home from school. Often, these papers don’t hold any value and just need to make their way into the recycling bin. However, the big question is how to store all the things you DO want to keep in an organized way?

You may also have a few stacks of Christmas cards or Holiday crafts your kids made that you’d like to keep, but if you don’t have a system for storing them, they will probably just sit in a pile and clutter up your counter tops until the 4th of July! If paper clutter happens to be a sore spot in your home, remember again, to take baby steps. Start by separating the items you want to save and weeding out the items you don’t. Then, utilize a storage system such as the one below to keep everything organized.


In my home, I keep a plastic file box for each family member, which I call “keepsake boxes.” The children’s boxes have individual file folders for pre-school through grade twelve. Obviously, those higher grades will not be getting filled for quit some time, but it’s nice to just have the box ready to go. In my boxes, I like to keep things such as report cards, school work that my kid’s put a lot of effort into, special art work, and cards that my kids get for their birthday or other holidays. Organizing all your keepsakes by grade level saves from having to label everything.

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I also have keepsake boxes for my husband and me, but they are organized a bit differently. We are often getting cards and art work from our kids or from each other, so our boxes have a separate file folder for each one of our children and our spouse. When I get a Mother’s Day card from my son, I put it in my box in his folder and when I get a birthday card from my husband, I put it in his folder. Similar to the grade level system in the kid’s boxes, dividing up my box by family member allows me to know who the item came from without having to label everything.

You can find the plastic file boxes that I have pictured at Walmart or purchased at Walmart.com by following this link: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Sterilite-File-Box/19400063

Pretty Simple Decorating and Organizing serves the Quad Cities area. Fore more organizing and storage ideas, check out my business at: facebook.com/prettysimpledecorating.organizing. Live outside of the Quad Cities area? You can also find all the help you need with home and office organizing projects across our great state by checking out our amazing Organizers and Efficiency Consulting Professionals at: www.iowaprofessionalorganizers.com.

May you find peace, joy and a life of Organization in 2019 and beyond. Happy New Year From IPO!

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