The battery recycling process…cool video

I like knowing what happens once things are donated or recycled and this is a great video on the battery recycling process.

Call2Recycle® is the only free used battery and cellphone collection program in North America. Since 1996, Call2Recycle has diverted 35 million kilograms of used batteries from the solid waste stream and established a network of 30,000 public collection sites. – See more at: http://www.call2recycle.ca/who-is-call2recycle/#sthash.yI3mnLBL.dpuf

 

 

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Great new app or great way to avoid?

The next time you begin to download that super cool new app to help you “get organized” ask yourself what isn’t working within your existing system that’s inspired you to spend time downloading and learning a new app.

It might be easier to tweak what you already use instead of spending time learning something new. Maybe you’re downloading the new app to avoid doing what needs to be done or you simply want the rush of something fun and new. I get it, I really do because those feelings are way more fun and satisfying (short-term) I  think you’ll agree though that taking the upper hand on something that you’ve been avoiding is more satisfying (long-term) than any app could ever be!

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If you are still looking for some awesome apps – here is an awesome list of home improvement apps and here the ‘best apps for getting organized’ list of all lists – good luck pulling yourself away from this one….the best apps to keep you organized

 

 

 

 

Enjoy a Fresh Style in Your Closet this Season

As we get our kids set for school and psych ourselves up for another fall season, there’s no better time than now for a closet make-over. So, before you head out on a shopping trip for new clothes check out what you ‘need’.

If you’ve already shopped (because really, who hasn’t :)) Then still consider following our  handy checklist to help whip that closet into shape to make getting dressed easier each day :

  • Examine every single thing in your closet – remove items and lay them out on your bed if it makes it easier to sort
  • Only put back items you are sure you want to keep, if you are unsure, hang it backwards and if you don’t wear it by next year, discard
  • As you return items to the closet, divide them into “current” and “out of season” giving the current items up front space with out of season items in the back
  • Group your items by type, i.e. pants, skirts, dresses, long-sleeve tops, short-sleeve tops
  • Optimize space with belt hangers, scarf organizers and door hooks
  • Door hanging shoe bags can hold socks, tights, hair accessories, and any assortment of dolls or ninja warriors 🙂
  • For items that you no longer want – place into 3 labeled bags: donate, garbage, and consignment
  • If you still have too many items for the space, consider storing out of season items elsewhere
    • perhaps an available closet in another room or
    • or pack some items up in storage boxes or under the bed bags that you remove the air from
    • or think about installing a customizable closet system for your next make-over

Here’s a young lady’s narrow closet that we maximized the space in – I wish I was a better photographer but I think you’ll get the idea.

Before pic includes: ceramics on the top shelf, art kits on the bottom shelf and those custom metal cubes that seemed like a good idea at one time. So, we gave her two drawers for her undergarments, two basket drawers plus gave her some floor space back….who can say they have floor space in their closet? Added in all new hangers, a couple of baskets, lighting and only put back the clothes she will wear!

Using Rubbermaid Configurations

Using Rubbermaid Configurations with drawers and baskets for easy access, added interior light, jewellery hanger and scarf/belt hanger and labelled baskets on upper shelf

No drawers so metal cubes were used = messy and a pain to find under clothes, no light to illuminate

No drawers so metal cubes were used = messy and a pain to find under clothes, no light to illuminate

 

Closet 101: Tips for Making Over Your Closet

It was so much fun writing this article originally for Rubbermaid Configurations Canada and now it’s your check list to get your daily dressing groove back on!closet101

Is your closet cluttered? Do you have multiple items of clothing on hangers? Can you find the shoes you want right away? Do you know where all of your ties are?

If you’re like most people, there are times when your closet is organized, but more often, clothing and accessories pile up until they are a jumble and finding what you want can require what feels like an archaeological dig. There may be clothes in there that you’ve completely forgotten you even have!

A closet makeover can be an exhilarating activity, but where do you start? How do you do it, and how do you maintain order once it’s done?

Here’s a four-step closet makeover process to get your closets organized and efficient:

1. Assess

2. De-clutter

3. Refine and Optimize

4. Evaluate your results

Step One: Assess Needs

Answer these questions

a) Who will be using the closet? Adults, growing children, an elder?

b) What do you need the space to hold? Coats, sports attire, seasonal clothes?

c) What is your organizing style? Do you prefer items to have a specific place in the closet? Do you like similar styles to be grouped together? Or are you more comfortable with casually draping your clothes over the door until you feel like putting them away?

Step Two: De-clutter

You’ll need large plastic bag and tape and marker

Lighten the Load

1. Review each item from the closet.

2. Return items that you want to keep to the closet, and make a pile of things you want to discard.

3. If you are unsure about whether to keep an item, hang it backwards.If you haven’t worn it in a year, you’ll know. You can then decide what you’ll do with it.

4. Next, divide the discard pile into three clearly labelled bags: donate, garbage and consignment. Divide the items remaining in the closet into “Current” and “Out of Season.” Store out-of-season items separately. They don’t get prime closet real estate until their season arrives.

Start Small to Achieve Success

If this is your first time, choose one small closet 

Set a timer for 30, 60 or 90 minutes, based on your work style

Stay focused on one closet until it’s finished

Step Three: Refine and Optimize

Now that you know what you have:

1. Group items in a way that makes sense to you, by color, style, etc.

2. Optimize the space by using practical organizing tools like a belt hanger, space-saving hangers, jewellery and scarf organizers and door hooks.

3. Consider installing lights to brighten up the interior of the closet.

Step Four: Evaluate Your Results

1. Do you have a place for all of your belongings? If not, you either need to cull more, or consider other options for storage.

2. If you have space particularly overhead or on the floor that is inefficiently used, consider installing a customizable closet system like Configurations™. You will need to measure your space – width, height and depth and then simply install.

via Rubbermaid Canada | Configurations.

In fight or flight? Care for yourself and plan to get back on track

It’s a simple fact that when in trauma, such as dealing with death or dying, caring for aging parents and new babies, job change, job loss, a promotion, moving or divorce (just to name a few) our brains default to the most simple function of fight or flight. What’s odd about this is we often don’t event notice it’s happening when we’re in the thick of it. The worst part is that we only realize the effect on our personal and professional lives when the trauma is minimized.

Bills might be overdue, we’re behind at work or the house is in disarray. Laundry piles up the garage or the basement becomes a collection area for things that need to be dealt with and we slowly realize that we’ve been hanging on like a kitty cat to the curtains.

The upside is that you are now cognizant of where you’re at and what needs to be done…. and the beautiful thing is that there are people and templates to help you get it all done.

This was a helpful list of 5 quick things to help you cope during a crisis – my guess is that you’ll read it and share it with a friend… most people in crisis read this and freeze trying to figure out how to implement the strategies.

About 8 years ago, while in my own crisis, I started to capture my favorite quotes and keep them near. I even posted my absolute favorite on my kitchen cabinets on a bright pink sticky note! :). Today those favorite quotes have grown and grown to a 18 page Word document (and it’s sorted by theme so I can find the quotes I’m looking for faster).

Here’s a link to a few of my favorite, inspiring words – I hope you find them as supportive and heart warming as I did and still do.

Feel free to contact us if you’d like our help to get back on track!

www.kaosgroup.com

Still wrestling with time management?

I Googled “Time Management” and got over 1 billion hits in less than 26 seconds so, don’t worry you’re not alone!

The problem isn’t that you have a challenge but rather that you can’t talk about it at work (for many obvious reasons) or with your family or loved one’s because they probably seem used to your behavior or make jokes about it and I would guess that you probably feel like no one really understands you.

I bet you’re not even sure what the root cause is behind your own time challenges. If you could define the root cause and actually implement some strategic actions, that suit your lifestyle and your personality style, you’d be much happier, more productive and you’d even pat yourself on the back some days for a job well done.

But sadly, many people don’t realize that there are people to help with time challenges – at kAos Group we do this along with other professionals that can be found in the Google search. But, until you are ready to give someone a call here are some great time management links that may provide affirmations or strategies for you to adopt:

Time management doesn’t work

Take Control of your time

Time strategies for moms

Best practices in time management

10 Strategies for better time management (i love this one!!)

Free time management resource materials

Quick Tips for Moving

It can be challenging enough to coordinate all the details to ensure a smooth move so here are a few tips to make the ‘day’ itslef so much smoother:

1. Pack a separate bathroom and bedroom box and move these in your car – this will ensure you have toilet paper on hand for those unpacking as well as ensure your first night is comfortable

1a. if there is more than one bedroom – request the movers to load the bedrooms onto the truck last so that they are unloaded first… then the bedrooms will be set up first

2. Map out before hand where the receivers and phone lines will be installed – this allows you to know precisely where the installation folks should drill holes into your new home

3. Have plates, cutlery, cups and napkins bagged separately along with a cooler with cold beverages in your car so that no time is wasted when you take breaks and feed your moving crew

4. Be sure you have a phone charger in your car with an adaptor to plug-in once your indoors

5. Tape signs on the doors of each room with the ‘name’ of the room that matches the ‘name’ you wrote on the boxes so that the movers can accurately get the boxes to the right location