4 Moving Checklists Every Person Needs

4 moving checklists every person needs when moving

In recent years, I have had several family and friends move to different areas. And, they always ask me, “How can I make the process of moving less stressful?” Well, here is what I tell them, YOU MUST make lists to help you keep focused and be able to remember every task that needs to be done. Even if you are not a list builder by nature, you must make lists to help you. It will keep your stress at bay, before, during and after a move. Here are 4 moving checklists every person needs when moving.

1st Checklist: A Timed Checklist

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What do I need to do at 6 weeks?
  • What do I need to do at 3 weeks?
  • What do I need to do at 2 weeks?
  • What do I need to do at 1 week?
  • What do I need to do the day before?
  • What do I need to do the day of the move?
  • What do I need to do the day after?
  • What do I need to do the week after?
  • What do I need to do by 2 weeks after?

2nd Checklist: Change of Address List

Include columns that read the following:

  • Company, government, and friends/family Name’s
  • Phone number, email address, or website to change address
  • A completed check box

Here are some suggestions on who to tell:

  • Passport
  • Post Office
  • Bank accounts
  • Credit cards
  • Investment/retirement accounts
  • Medicare & Social Security
  • Voter’s registration
  • Family & friends & Coworkers & Clients
  • Driver’s license/car registration
  • Newspaper Subscriptions
  • Fitness Center
  • Places of worship
  • Legal and Financial Professionals
  • Magazines Subscriptions

3rd Checklist: What to give away or donate list

What to do give away and donate and what to keep?  Add these items to your list:

  • Include a column for the name of the item you want to get rid of.
  • Include a column for who to give it to.
  • Include a column for where to donate it.

Tips:

  • Walk around your home and put a sticky note on the items you want to give away and donate.  If you have specific places that you want to give the item, write it on the sticky note.
  • If you want to give the item away, Take photos of the item you want to give away or donate.  Then, share the image of the item with friends on Facebook.
  • Share with a yard sale community online (if you fill comfortable with this.)
  • Keep a running list of items that you donate for tax return purposes.
  • Check out our Charitable Donation Locations page to donate.

Tips to help you get rid of stuff:

  • Take digital photos of your achieved photos and get rid of the originals.
  • Make a video of your digital photos for Christmas or birthday presents.
  • Make a scrapbook of your photos and stubs from activities you went to see.

4th Checklist: Packing Boxes list

Create a list of your content and number or letter the boxes. Include these columns on the checklist:

  • Number on the box and checklist column
  • What is in the box? column
  • And, where the box needs to go in the new house

Storage Moving Boxes

Tips:

  • Write the number on the box large enough so you can see it from a distance.
  • Use a red or black marker and write the number or letter in the same place on ALL the boxes.

If you don’t want to make your own checklist, subscribe to Enlightened News and receive “All the Checklists You Need for Your Move” Packet already made for you!


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That is it!  Remember to pace yourself and you will be able to get everything done and well on your way to your new life in your new home.  Please share and leave a comment below on how your move went.  Good luck!

 

Sabrina Quairoli

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September Monthly Organizing Challenge – Kitchen Organizing

September Monthly Organizing Challenge

September Monthly Organizing Challenge: This month’s organizing challenge is kitchen organizing.  To make your kitchen run more smoothly, you must create zones.

There are lots of zones you can create.  Make up your own title for each of your zones – get your family’s assistance.  This will remind them what goes in the different zones.  If you can’t think of any zone names, here are some I use in my kitchen:

  • Prep Food – where you cut the food.
  • Cleaning – where you clean the dishes.
  • Baking – where you setup for baking.
  • Cooking – where you cook your food.
  • Presentation – where you plate your food on platters.
  • Command Center – where you store your papers from school, bills, etc…
  • Beverage area – where you store and make your coffee, tea, etc…
  • Eating area – where you eat your food.

Here are different areas of the kitchen you can go through to make your kitchen more organized and functional for every member of your family.  I briefly describe what each post is about.  Feel free to click and read other posts to help you get inspired.  Don’t forget to share with your friends and family.

Organizing Tips:

Tips to Maximize Your kitchen space:

Let me know how you do with your kitchen organizing challenge this month.  Leave a message below.

 

Sabrina Quairoli

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A Way to Repurpose Broken Pencils!

A Way to Repurpose Broken Pencils!

We all have broken pencils around the house.  Gather them up and try this.  Here is a way to repurpose broken pencils.

My daughter use her fabulous duck tape colors and her broken pencils and turned them into a beautiful duck tape bouquet! She used the broken pencils as the stem of the bouquet. And created the rest of the flowers with the colorful and patterned duck tape.   Check out the photo!

Duct Tape Flower

Here are some links where you can buy Duct Tape from Amazon:

Tip:  Reinforce the areas where the pencils meet with the duct tape so it will not bend over.

There are always ways to re-purpose items that have broken.  You just need a little creativity and a little know-how.

What creative way did you decide to repurpose your broken pencils?  Please share.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Bring Usability Back to Your Kitchen

Bring Usability Back to Your Kitchen

Do you walk into your kitchen and look at the clutter and stuff everywhere, and wonder, “What should I make? Do I want to bake, cook, assemble, or make a salad?” Pondering over this for a few minutes and checking out the clutter, you get overwhelmed and just give up and go out to eat instead.  Sound familiar? You are not alone.  Lots of people rather go out to eat than spend time making meals and eating at home. I am here to tell you that you can make the process of eating at home less overwhelming by taking some time and making your kitchen more usable. Here are tips to bring usability back to your kitchen and make it more enjoyable to make meals.

Clear out ALL cabinets and drawers: Revisit every space in your kitchen even those spaces far below and above and in the cabinets.   Ask yourself if you are going to use this items that were not used in a while.  If no, get rid or give/donate them.  If you decide to keep them, move them to an area that will remind you to use them.

Have zones for all your activities:  If you like hot beverages, have a beverage station.  If you bake, create a section for baking supplies and prep.  If you like to cook with herbs and spaces, have a space for all your herbs and spices.  Create a prep area for prepping your meals.  Whatever tasks you like to do in your kitchen, create your kitchen counters and cabinets spaces to support those tasks.

Junk Drawer be gone:  Make the smallest drawer in your kitchen the infamous junk drawer.  The smaller the drawer the less filled with stuff it will get and you will be able to control the clutter and what is placed in it. Get a drawer organizer with lots of compartments to help manage the clutter.

Pantry transformation: Create subsection in your pantry that will help you manage your stuff.  Group like items together.  Canned beans with all the canned beans, soups with soups, etc… If you want to make a quick meal, have a few baskets that hold the ingredients for a particular weekly meal.  Preparing these baskets at the beginning of week will help with time management on those rushed evenings.

Go through the Unused Hand-held Kitchen Tools: Clear out any tool that is broken, worn, or not needed anymore.  compartmentalized your drawers with customized bins that fit each tool or type of tools.  Measure the width and length of your drawer.  These measurements will help when finding the right bin for inside the drawer.  With these measurements, take your largest and smallest kitchen tool with you to the store to find a few bins that fit each of the sizes. Then, buy a few of these bin sizes to fit the width and length of the drawer measurement.

You are done.. After completing these tips, your kitchen will be a usable and enjoyable place to be. No more take out dinners for you.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Treasure Each Day Quotes

Only you can value each day.  Here are treasure each day quotes to help you remember that valuing your day will make your day feel more fulfilling and enjoyable.

It is during

our darkest moments

that we must focus

to see the light.

~Aristotle Onassis

 It is during our darkest moments

The moment passed

is no longer,

the future may never be;

the present is all of which man is master.

~ Jean-Jacques Rousseau

The moment passed is no longer...

A man

Who dares waste

One hour of time

has not discovered

the value of life.

~ Charles Darwin

A man who dares waste one hour of time...

An Itch of time is an inch of gold: treasure it.

Appreciate its fleeting nature:

Misplaced gold is easily found.

Misspent time is lost forever.

~Loy Ching-Yuen

An Itch of time is an inch of gold

You don’t get to choose

how you’re going to die.

Or when.

You can only decide how you’re going to live.

~Joan Baez

You don’t get to choose

The surest way

to be late is

to have plenty of time.

~Leo Kennedy

The surest way to be late...

May your day be a peaceful and enjoyable one.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Customizing Ikea Cabinets for a Small Space

Customizing Ikea Cabinets for a Small Space

If you read my posts, you know I have a smaller home. It has many rooms but are narrow and hard to fit the average piece of furniture in any room. It seems that every room has a unique wall that I need to find a smaller than normal piece of furniture to fit in it. It is quite annoying. Well, enough with complaining, back to the post. Here is how customizing IKEA cabinets for a small space made a space more organized.

In my walk-out basement, we have a long and narrow family room 10 ft x 22 ft. There is a heater on the wall that heats the space, a sump pump on the floor, a back door and window and 1 closet door and an opening to the other part of the kitchen. You can see why this space is challenging, right? Luckily, I have experience measuring spaces and areas for furniture placement. I measured the length, width, and height of the areas I wanted to fit storage cabinets. And, with my measurements in hand, I headed to the nearest Ikea.

I found these wonderful cabinets that fit perfectly in my space! I designed the cabinet layout with glass doors and wood fronts to breakup all the brown wood.  Any way I choose a design (Ikea’s Besta brand was what I choose) that worked with the areas I needed to organize, in this case, my window and the heater walls.  The inside also had many options, even though I didn’t need anything but shelves. Check out the results!

I stored things like, my sewing machine, buttons, work in bins, scrapbook supplies, cable box, video game console, photo albums, and video games in it by using baskets with and without lids. I also was able to frame it around a window as well. The doors do a great job hiding the clutter and organizing it!

If you are looking for a cabinet for your unique room, look for cabinets that can be versatile and attach together to make one unit. Make sure they have several options so you can really customize the cabinet for what you need. Above all, have fun making your cabinets exactly what you want and never settle or something that doesn’t fill your needs. Let me know how your cabinets work out.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Kitchen Remodel Project Tips Part 3 Eating Healthy Tips Without a Kitchen

Kitchen-Remodel-Project-Tips-Part-3-Eating-Healthy-Tips-Without-a-Kitchen

My previous two posts were about kitchen remodel project tips. In this post, I will talk about how I helped my family eat healthy meals without a kitchen.

I like to make sure we all eat healthy. I like everyone to not eat too much also. And because I have food intolerance issues, I didn’t want to eat too much processed foods. So, this is what we decided to do to help us stay healthy while the kitchen remodel was going on.

We used our dining room table. They had moved our fridge into the dining room so it was a perfect spot for meals and prepping. Our dining room would become our kitchen for the next few weeks. Oh joy! We moved our table to one side and then setup a place for the microwave and toaster oven which would be our cooking area. We of course used paper plates and paper cups. I found some great deals on paper products at the nearby wholesale store. =)

FOR BREAKFAST: We used the microwave and toaster oven every morning. And, an electric tea kettle for boiling water and making coffee.

  • Egg and bacon muffin ( add healthy frozen and ready sandwiches)
  • Cereal
  • Croissant sandwiches
  • Oatmeal (instant)

FOR LUNCH: We used the microwave almost every day or my husband and I went out for lunch.

Note: Kids were in school so it was just my husband and I and we did freezer meals for lunch.

  • Lean Pockets
  • Lunch meat like turkey and cheese sandwiches

FOR DINNER: We cooked dinner on the grill almost every night. About a week or two before the remodel, I did my marathon freezer meals and made crock pot recipes that I froze in the freezer. I made turkey and beef burgers, cooked meatballs, soup, etc… And then froze it all.

  • Crock pot recipes
  • Homemade quesadillas with cooked chicken and cheese heated in the microwave.
  • Prepared turkey burgers
  • Prepared beef burgers
  • Soup

It was a little uncomfortable, of course, but all in all, we were able to keep our diet in check and were still able to eat at home. Though I am not going to lie to you and say we weren’t completely happy when our make-shift kitchen wasn’t totally dismantled at the end of this process.

If you want to revisit the previous posts in this series, here are the links:

I hope you enjoyed my post series. Let me know what you did for cooking when you did your remodel. I would love to hear from you.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Kitchen Remodel Project Tips Part 2 – How We Organized Our Kitchen Stuff Before & During Our Kitchen Remodel

Kitchen Remodel Project Tips Part 2 - How We Organized Our Kitchen Stuff Before & During Our Kitchen Remodel

I found out the start date of the kitchen demo. It is two weeks away. If you read my previous post, we started the kitchen remodel project planning process about 6 months ago. Since the weather was so bad this past winter, the start of the process was delayed a bit too. But that was OK. I didn’t feel like cooking outside in the freezing temperatures. Now, I can get down to business and start doing what I do best and that is decluttering and organizing.

Of course, I first purged the different cabinets of anything I didn’t use. Since I have been doing this all along, there wasn’t that much to get rid of. Then, I organized the stuff I kept.  Here are the kitchen remodel project tips I wrote up, just for you. This helped me clear the cabinets and get me organized for this major remodel.

  • I started with the cabinets I did not use often, like the one above the fridge and the small corner cabinets. I cleared out lots of old plastic water bottles and moved wine glasses that I haven’t used in years because they were stored above the refrigerator to an area where my other smaller supplies of wine glassware were in our dining room. Now, I can actually use them.
  • I cleared the upper cabinet decor. I washed them and put them in the other room inside a cabinet for safe keeping. Most of of these decorations will be reused in my new kitchen.
  • I was able to store all the stapled foods into the foyer closet/pantry I had been used. Yes, if you know my posts, I had a pantry in my foyer I use for my kitchen supplies. You can check out the post here:http://sabrinasorganizing.com/turning-my-foyer-closet-into-a-pantry-closet/
  • I place all my pots and pans and cookbooks in our enclosed sun room. I wanted them handy since I have a few weeks till the demo.
  • The items that were under the sink went in their own opened box and stored in the sun room as well. I knew I would be using these items to wash cooking supplies when grilling so I wanted to keep it nearby.
  • And for the rest, I boxed up items into categories, just in case, I needed them.
  • For my utensils, I bought cheap dividers and organized them into the organizers’ sections. I purchased them from a discount store. Then, I was able to stack the organizing trays on top of one another and store them downstairs out of the way. This helped when I needed to put everything back into the new kitchen.

Here is the room cleared out, the electrical was already done and cabinets were going up. It was starting to come together.

thekitchenduringtheprocess

In next post, I will talk about how we ate during the demo and reconstruction process of those three weeks. And, no we didn’t eat out all the time. I hope you enjoyed this post. Please share to show the love.

 

Sabrina Quairoli

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Kitchen Remodel Project Tips Part 1 – How We Kept Stuff Organized

Kitchen Remodel Project Part-1---how we kept stuff organized during kitchen-remodeling

Kitchen remodeling are the hardest project in the home. So, because of that, we waited a long time. Now, we finally finished our kitchen remodel. These three posts will talk about the entire process and how we organized our space and stuff, before and during the process.  I have included kitchen remodel project tips as well throughout these posts.  I hope you enjoy them.

First, let me give you some background information about our kitchen. We purchased a new home almost 19 years ago. My husband and I bought into a larger development. So, when they designed the kitchen. which is 10 feet wide x 20 feet long, they didn’t use all the kitchen. Only one-quarter of the kitchen was cabinets. The rest was for dinette and a bar area. And, the peninsula was blocking the entire room. So you had to walk around the peninsula to get to the other side of the kitchen. Oh, I didn’t mention that we didn’t even have a pantry in the room. Annoying, right? Because of this layout, the entire wall to the left could not be used for anything.

HERE ARE THE BEFORE PICTURES:

before kitchen remodel 2nd side of kitchen

before kitchen remodel 1side

We started out by finding a contractor through Angie’s List. A client referred a contractor to me that she used for a few home projects. She highly recommended him. The company name was Total Home Solution. So, when I went into Angie’s List, we did a search and found that he had great references. So, we called him.

We had a meeting in September 2013 where we discussed our ideas and found out about the cabinet suppliers. We needed lots of storage because, being a home organizer, I wanted to have a place for everything kitchen related in the kitchen that wasn’t in the kitchen because of the poor design. And, if I was going to do this, I was going to do it the way I wanted it and that was with lots of cabinets. We took our time with this process to make sure everything was included.

The design process took several months. We didn’t finish the details until February 2014. There were meetings with cabinet designers, visits to stores to find pulls and knobs, counter-top and flooring. As well as, making sure all the areas(zones) we needed were included in the design.

Here are the zones we added in our new kitchen with the kitchen cabinet manufacturer’s representative, Rich’s help at Pete’s Lumber.  By assigning zones to different areas of the kitchen, it make it easier to see what we were missing and what cabinets we wanted in those areas.

  • Command zone was near our phone and light switches next to the refrigerator .
  • Baking zone was on the other side of the refrigerator in the upper cabinets.
  • Washing zone was near the sink next to the dishwasher
  • Cutting and prepping zone was on the other side of the sink.
  • Cooking zone was next to the range on the right side.
  • Beverage zone was next to the pantry on the other side of the kitchen.
  • Pantry area zone was near the beverage area.

HERE ARE THE AFTER PICTURES:

after kitchen picture1

after kitchen picture2

after kitchen picture3

You may wonder what we did with the older cabinets. Well, I felt so guilty that we were getting rid of the few cabinets we had so I asked around if anyone wanted them. Lucky for us, a client of mine took them all for her shop. As we took down the cabinets, I thought of when we saw them put up the first time. We were newlyweds and young. How clean and new the space was, how we loved to see the new kitchen. We were happy to have a new house, a new home to start our lives together. So, as expected, this was a little emotional for me. But, as the process progressed and the issues handled, I started feeling better about the transformation and space.

The next post is how we organized our stuff so we knew where everything was while we were dealing with the kitchen remodel. Hope you come back and check it out.  Please share too.

Sabrina Quairoli

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Ways to Organize Your Manufacturers Manuals

Ways to Organize Manufacturers Manuals

We all have them, those piles of appliance and other product paper manuals scattered around the house. Where do you put them? Do you store them in kitchen drawers or in a pile in the basement or do you not have a place to put all of them? After we buy that new appliance, we forget that we need to file away the manual for those times when we need it – later on, years down the road, when that something happens. If you want to organize your manufacturers manuals, here are three ways:

First Option: One way is to sort the manuals in an accordion folder labeled A-Z. Then, sort manuals by manufacturer’s name. Since each product has the manufacturer’s name printed somewhere on the product, it makes it easy to file and find.

Second Option: Another option would be to use a smaller organizing bin and use tabs and hanging folders. Label each folder with a general group name for the products helps you find and retrieve manuals. Here are some categories: TVs, Gaming, Radios, iPods, Tools, Appliances, Computers, and Printers.

Third Option: Another option is to use magazine organizers and label the bins by general group like TV, Gaming, etc… Label all the bins if you are using the group names.

Tip: If you have several computers, divide each computer’s manuals and paperwork by putting all the paperwork in a Gallon size Food storage bag with a label for each computer. They you can file it in one of these bins above.

Tip: For appliances manuals, there could be the internet.  Check first before throwing the paper manual out by typing in your browser the manufacturer name and the model number.  To keep track of the appliance manual online, make a list with the appliance and the website url name for that appliance manual and keep that list in a safe place for reference.

Tip: Whatever system you decide to use, stay consistent and keep the system going.

To keep the files from getting too full, I like to go through each section and make sure the manufacturer manuals are still being used. I do this once every 3-5 years.

Having a well-organized manufacturer manuals will help you be able to reach them easily in case of emergencies and help you take action quicker.

Sabrina Quairoli

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