Happy 4th of July!

fireworks1_copy_thumb.gifI’m not quite sure where the month of June went but July is upon us.  This month starts out with a bang, literally!  The 4th of July is this Thursday.

Last year the drought in the Midwest kept most local fireworks displays from happening.  This year we have had an excess of rain. The fireworks should go as planned if they don’t get washed out.  If you’re planning a 4th of July celebration it’s always good to have a plan B in case the weather doesn’t cooperate.

Check out these websites for ideas on celebrating the the 4th of July.






July is also National Hot Dog Month, National Ice Cream Month, National Watermelon Month, and National Baked Bean Month. You would think all we do during this month is eat.

But since these foods are usually part of 4th of July picnics, family picnics, and many BBQ’s, I’ve included some websites to give you some different recipes using these foods. There’s nothing wrong with the plain and simple but if you can add some pizazz to your event, why not try something new.

Foodhotdog10National Hot Dog Month.  All those summer BBQ’s seem to include the little (or not so little) red dog, grilled to perfection.





National Ice Cream Month.   The 3rd Sunday in July is National Ice Cream Day but pick any day to celebrate with your family.  Make homemade ice cream with or without an ice cream maker.  The links below have recipes and instructions on how to do it.  Oh, the simple pleasures of life don’t have to cost much.  Just a little planning ahead can make a memorable sweet experience.




Watermelons National Watermelon Month.  Now is the time to buy those big red fruits and experiment with different ways of eating them.  Find a couple of recipes from the links below that look good. On a day when it’s too hot for the children to play outside just pull out a recipe for all of you to make together.





                                                                                                                                                                                                      baked_beansNational Baked Bean Month.  Beans go great with those hot dogs and hamburgers.  Check out some of the links below for recipes to make them special.





Staycation is the latest buzz word about vacations.  If you can’t get away for a regular vacation, or even if you can, summer can be a long boring time without activities to do.  Here is a blog post from a couple of years ago with some ideas on how to: “Vacation In Your Own Home Town”

My next blog post will include a whole lot more ideas for Staycations. If you’re not already signed up to receive blog posts updates by email you can do so here.

Have a fun and safe 4th of July!






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Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Fathers Day Graphics

When you’re trying to control the clutter, gift giving holiday’s can be a real challenge.  We want to honor and show our gratitude with some kind of purchased or homemade gift. We want to give something the recipient will like and use. We don’t want to give them something that will become clutter.

Father’s Day can sometimes be very challenging.  We are lead to believe that most men would like to have new tools, or tickets to a sporting event, or some new electronic equipment.  Of course there is the old standby tie but many men just don’t wear ties that much anymore.

Some of the above will make great gifts if the Dad is interested in those things. Sometimes those kinds of gifts are just too expensive.  That doesn’t mean you should settle for just giving him something that may end up in a drawer or gather dust.  It’s time to get creative.

Fathers love the attention on Father’s Day just as much as mothers do on Mother’s Day.

Here are some ideas that don’t have to cost a lot or become clutter.

  1. If you can’t afford those tickets to a sporting event consider taking Dad to a movie. Or you can buy his favorite movie on DVD and plan a special afternoon at the Movies in your own home. Make popcorn, buy his favorite candy or snack, turn off the phones, and enjoy an afternoon together.
  2. Plan a dinner where you and/or the children cook everything and wait on Dad like he is a king.
  3. If you have younger children they can plan for games, activities, and even decorations.  See the links below for some ideas.
  4. If Dad has a hobby then some sort of new tool or equipment for that hobby would be appreciated. Most hobbies have a lot of items in a wide range of prices. You can create a gift bag of several lower price items instead of one large, expensive one.

These two links have lots of other ideas for Father’s Day.



Happy Father’s Day!


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Daylight Savings–Spring Forward

Clocks005I love Daylight Savings day in early March. That extra hour of daylight in the evening gives me an added boost of energy. I’m one of those people who have SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) which makes me want to hibernate all winter long. With the sun not setting until later I feel like I have more time in the day to get things done. I’m a morning person so when it gets dark around 5:00 PM in the middle of winter I really shut down early.

That means I struggle to get those little messes like the dinner dishes and clean laundry put away in the evening. So the next morning I’m cleaning up from the night before. Not a good way to start a day!

So when Daylight Savings kicks in I get excited because I know my house will be cleaner each morning and I can start the day with a smile on my face.

This Sunday, March 11, is when we move those clocks forward one hour. I change the clocks before going to bed on Saturday so I’m not late for any activities I have planned on Sunday.

Put some spring in your step and take advantage of the longer days to get the evening chores done in the evening. You’ll have more energy and motivation when you start the mornings out fresh. You’ll never miss that lost hour of sleep!

To a lighter load along the way.


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Travel Plans: Maybe?

I plan on traveling to Chicago from St. Louis tomorrow morning on American Airlines. At least that is the plan. So far my flight is not canceled and all I can do is keep my fingers crossed. I would hate to miss my sister’s 50th birthday party on Saturday night.

Traveling in today’s world isn’t what it use to be. With all the security, airline cancellations, and restrictions on what can be in carry on luggage, traveling by plane takes a lot of planning. If you are not sure what you can pack in your carry on luggage then check out the TSA website. I’ll be back on Sunday, again keeping my fingers crossed that it goes as planned.

Next week I will have a sign up form on this blog so you can receive the Organize by the Month Newsletter in you email box. That will be more convenient than remembering to check the blog on the 1st and 15th of each month.

I also plan to have my website up and running sometime next week. I will be publishing lots of articles on organization and decluttering. I will also be publishing some eBooks in the near future on various topics about organizing and decluttering. I will let you know when the site is ready.

If you have any questions or topics in the above areas that you would like to see an article about or an eBook, please let me know. I love sharing my knowledge but if it is something I don’t know about I love to do research and can share the results with you.

Have a good weekend.


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