Think Organized Thoughts

July 8, 2019

I just returned from a long anticipated 2-week trip to Korea. It was a wonderful trip – I could have stayed for two more weeks! My son was born in Korea so the first ten days were spent with a tour organized by AdopteeBridge and the remainder was on our own.

In preparation, I needed gifts for 10 people (with coordinated gift wrap) and a donation for an orphanage. There were a number of other things to plan for, but these were the items that did not have specific boundaries. For example, I needed travel adaptors – so I bought them and checked them off my list, but gifts could be anything! And once purchased, was it enough? Should I get more?

I foun...

January 30, 2019

Whenever our Minnesota winter gets extreme, Facebook gets a few images of people’s feet in Wonder Bread bags. Many of us remember moon boots. I did not have them, but 90% of the kids in the 3rd grade did and they all had bread bags inside them to keep the kids’ feet warm. People used this simple hack to make Moon Boots work for their kids.

In 2001 I was in New York City during a big snowstorm. Being from Minnesota the snow wasn’t that out of the ordinary, but many New Yorkers were at a loss. I saw a person using a clipboard to scrap snow off their car, people wearing plastic bags over their shoes, and a variety of items used as make-shift bridges...

December 26, 2018

I put so much time into my family's annual holiday greeting card: select the photo, compare design options and prices from a number of printers, decide on the text, address them, write a little message on each, seal, stamp and mail. This year I sent just over 100, then I started on sending the Think Organized cards out. It was a happy moment when I dropped the last ones into the post box! 

I enjoy sending and receiving the cards. But now, as the season starts to wind down, and as I start de-cluttering my living room of all our decorations, I have these lovely cards with photos of my extended family and friends. I know that behind each card i...

When it starts snowing, a lot of your time and attention will be spent on dealing with the snow. Clearing the driveway, scraping the car, cleaning the mudroom, cleaning rugs near the front door, and running snowy clothes through the laundry. These tasks can distract from other chores or projects you want to work on; like organizing areas of your home. . Among these areas is the garage.

A typical garage in winter is full of snow-covered tools left leaning on the wall. In order to get to holiday decorations, other items are often displaced with nowhere to go. Outdoor items that need to be stored in a dry environment in the winter, like some outdoo...

August 23, 2018

A client recently said “My spices are perfectly organized in alphabetical order, why is the garage so hard for me?”

I don’t really believe that the garage would be hard for her. She thrives in organized settings and likes to know exactly where everything is. Instead, I think that when she finds herself with a free afternoon, the last thing she wants to spend it on is organizing the garage.

We all could clean the house, mow the lawn, wash the car, file taxes, or paint the window trim, but don’t because we want to spend our time doing other things. None of us will be on our deathbed saying how happy we are that our garages were perfectly organized,...

July 18, 2018

I am working with a client who has a lot of things. He knows he has a lot of things and is bothered by the clutter it causes. He was reluctant to work with an organizer because he struggles to let go of things. The fear of being forced to discard something, or of needing to validate his own feelings, kept him from starting the project.

I want people to know that organizing does not have to include getting rid of things. I do think that life and organization is easier when you have less things, and that if you keep the same amount of things in the same space it will probably still be crowded, but there is a lot we can do to bring more order to a c...

June 22, 2018

Every morning our dog reminds us that it is time for breakfast at 6:00 AM. After eating he climbs into our bed and is very to start his day off with a good, long nap. This really wouldn’t bother me – it isn’t like he needs to catch the bus or get to work on time  – but I can’t make the bed. He is an 80 pound dog – a big lump for me to work around. Every morning, he prevents me from completing the task of making the bed. 

These things happen – especially doing tasks that you might not enjoy, such as organizing. "The bin that I bought for wrapping paper isn’t long enough for all the rolls; I don’t have enough labels for every contain...

May 2, 2018

This past week was the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professional's annual conference. It was held in St. Charles, Illinois, at a really neat, quirky place called The Q Center. Past conferences have included large vendor fairs where companies that provide products or services to the organizing professional have booths to marketing their wares and give out samples. This year they did not do that, but we still walked away with some swag!

Already a product that I love, all attendees received a small Time Timer. I love these!

When we feel overwhelmed by a task it is often because we think it will take forever! The Time...

April 2, 2018

My sister visited recently. She lives in Sacramento and wanted to escape their lovely springtime for a few days of sleet and cold in Minnesota. (Not sure why she came in March, but she is always welcome!)

She likes to be busy and if nothing is happening she will just start doing something – which was great! For example, as we demoed part of our basement she decided to check the Christmas tree lights and pull any broken ones for recycling. I would have done that next December, but nice to know it is finished!

I asked if she would go through my clothes with me. Like most people I have things that fall into a few categories –

  • Items that cost a bi...

February 15, 2018

I recently met with a client who is chronically disorganized. The Institute for Challenging Disorganization defines ‘chronic disorganization’ as someone who has 1) struggled with organization challenges their entire life; 2) has repeatedly attempted different solutions without success; and 3) whose life has been negatively impacted by disorganization.

I told this client that I would really enjoy organizing the entire house, reducing all the clutter, finding homes for everything, and getting it super tidy! What a fun job that would be! That said, regardless of finding the best solutions for every room in the home - it would still take effort by th...

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Contact: Christine Daves,, 612-240-0828