Mornings are such a “make or break” part of your entire day.
Whether you have kids, retired or are an empty nester the way your mornings start will either send you out the door smiling or you’ve got your head down hoping no one sees the defeat in your eyes.

I started my day with a snooze button ( twice). That should have been my first sign, but no…I didn’t listen to that inner voice.
I dragged myself out to the kitchen only to find that my husband had taken the last drop of milk, but thoughtfully enough returned the empty bag to the fridge. Seriously!

So the lack of coffee was going to do some damage to an already lack lustre morning.
As a family we had had a great weekend, busy and tiring by Sunday night. So I opted to skip making lunches thinking I’d be bright eyed and bushy tailed for a morning chore that was not in our regular routine.
Now I ask you Why? Why on earth would I think that.
Routine is how I get out of the house without anyone loosing a limb.
Adding three lunches to that already time sensitive schedule was NOT going to make this morning successful.

My inner voice at this point is stepping up the volume and trying to coax me back to that warm bed. But, No I press on.
Three kids, three different buses, three different pick up times. Come on, I yell to myself you can do this!!
Lunches were going to be sim pickings due to the fact that our weekend activities allowed no time to grocery shop, but who was going to argue with me! Basic food needs and a water bottle, I’m sure the littles would survive today, if I could just get them up and fed!
I managed to scrounge up a cup of tea which I set down on the counter when I heard the buzzer go off on the dryer. Heading to the laundry room to fetch the next of the never-ending clothes swap, I flip lights on and nicely ( not really) try to coax my kids out from under their soft secure blankets. I reach the laundry, but before I can stop myself I start cleaning out the litter box that had been sadly overused during our weekend out and about.
Taking the cat litter outside I realize it’s not a bad temperature outside and maybe the kids should wear their spring coats today. Searching through the front closet, my head buried deep into the unknown I start to raise my voice slightly louder because there’s sibling love going on in the bathroom and it’s not going to end well.

I do find two of the three jackets and happiness abounds when a pair of rubber boots are discovered – correct size and all! I feel a small victory! I sense that I might just turn this day around!
Heading to the bathroom to settle WW3 and I pick up three socks and a pair of shorts from the hallway. Shorts? Did we not just have -15 degree weather last week? Where did these shorts come from and why are they on the floor in my hallway?
Ever so gently I push the children in the direct of the kitchen telling them toast is available for their nutritional start of the day, don’t ask for cereal your father drank all the milk!

Briefly I catch a glimpse of my reflection in the bathroom mirror and this is where that feeling of victory vanishes down the toilet. How is it possible that someone ,who got a decent 6 hour sleep looks like a main character in a horror film? After spending precious minutes pulling at my skin and raising my eyebrows I decide maybe if I brushed my teeth things would start looking up. Yeah, sure that’s the ticket!

Back to the master bedroom and I hear some serious grumbling in my teenagers room.
No clothes! It’s a nightmare, but she has no clothes!
Ugh! I do manage to get dressed before thinking I forgot to grab the clothes out the dryer! I make my way down the hall and am corralled into the kitchen where the kids are expressing high distaste for what’s in their lunches. Why can’t they just wait until they get to school to open it and then I’m a good 20 miles away and don’t have to listen to the complaints!
Pushing, shoving with loving guidance and the teeth are brushed and two out of three have coats on. Not bad considering I have one eye with make up on and am sporting two different socks.

The alarms go off. Yes this well oiled morning machine has alarms set so that the kids have exactly 5 minutes to get from our door to the bus stop without any major injuries.
Front door closes….and I’m in the kitchen staring at my cup of tea that has now lowered to  room temperature and I think to myself – It’s a good thing I’m a Professional Organizer or THIS morning could have gone really bad!

Lesson learned. Even the best have bad days! 🙂

We are lucky to have the support of a large national company, Bell Canada who is investing in Mental Health Awareness across our country.

I would be surprised if there was one person among us who has NOT been touched by a mental health issue.

Many discussions have started in my days working with clients as to why mental health issues seem to be more “out there”.

Why there seems to be more mental health problems with young adults and teens.

And how can people live and function with so many road blocks and stigmas attached to mental health issues.

I don’t have all the answers, I probably don’t have any! But from personal experience in my own life as well as those clients who were brave and confident enough to reach out, I believe that as a society we are trying to grow and become more compassionate. We are teaching our children to become more understanding and open to discussions.

But, we have a very long way to go. The #BellLetsTalk initiative is a step in the right direction, but we must continue this support year long and in every aspect of our lives.

When you hear a friend, co-worker or family member degrade ,knowingly or not, someone who is struggling – STAND UP! STOP the behaviour. Yes, It’s sometimes not so easy, sometimes you must be brave yourself. But I have to say, I doubt you will feel “bad” after asking the behaviour to stop. I doubt you will feel belittled and ashamed. You might actually feel empowered, strong and full of life and all it took was a few words to re-direct someone’s unkind thoughts and words in a way that gets THEM thinking.

75% of our Organizing clients are dealing with some kind of mental health issues. Depression, Anxiety, Stress, Grief and Shame are all very common feelings when working with someone in their living space.

Asking for help is the first step towards living a calm and peaceful existence. We are so very proud of our clients that do reach out. And we understand the concerns when it is a family member who contacts us initially. Number #1 rule in Professional Organizing? It never works if the client isn’t truly ready.

If you’re thinking of a family member who you feel may need some help, the best bet is to ask first, never assume they’re ready.

I love this clip – please take the time to watch to the end.

It’s a Good Day

As I work away in my office doing everything that needs to be done to run a small business of my own, it’s been a challenging day to stay on task.

The recent election in the USA has most people in a daze today, I’m finding. I went to bed last night feeling anxious and woke up feeling depressed. I’m happy for those that are happy with the outcome. We are all entitled to our political views. And although I’m Canadian and happy to be one, there is no doubt in my mind that there will be fall out and changes from this very, very stressful election and campaign.

I only wish our neighbours to the south peace and security. I wish those in the world who are living in a state of limbo, a sense of calm.

Remember you cannot control anyone else actions or how they react to a situation. You can only control your own. So, be the person you are proud of. Strive to make your time here as fulfilling and worthwhile as possible.

Look to the future, your future as an adventure where sometimes challenges will arrive and certainly set you back…maybe even knock you down for the count. But that same adventure could very well lead you to the edge of the most beautiful and enriching state of being you would never had noticed.

Project to your family and friends that you believe in them, provide that safe and comforting environment that you, yourself wish for.

There have been many, many difficult things that have occurred in our lifespan, we concurred them all. We grew and learned from our mistakes and we will continue on this journey.

Trust in who you are. Be strong. Hold your face to the sun and breathe deep.

We Empower You.

So many people approach us in every manner you can imagine. Email, Phone, FB, LinkedIn or walking up to us in a parking lot after we get out of our company vehicle. And the question they ask?

“What do you do?”

Our Answer…We Empower you. It’s not just about organizing. We take that overwhelming feeling and self doubt and, right beside you,we battle against it.

Do you walk into your home and ever feel like turning around and walking out again because there is so much “stuff” in your space?

We take the time to understand why you’re feeling this way and use our 15 years experience to bring your space back to you.

Is there a place in your home that is not being used the way you want it? A spare room that’s the “dumping ground” for everyone in the family?

To be honest…we make things right in your world. That’s what we do. We streamline, organize and bring back that smile.

Is the tsunami of paper coming into your home about to cause a major disaster?

Setting up systems in every part of your space so that you can maintain an organized and stress-free home. That’s what we do.

Can you do this yourself? Yes, quite possibly you can. Can you stay on task, not get distracted by everyday life and get the space “cleared” in a matter of hours instead of weeks? Maybe not.

Can we? Yes! Because we love our jobs and we’re good at what we do.We Empower You

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Monster Guard to a great game for kids age 7 to 11. It’s designed by the American Red Cross to teach what to expect and how to prepare for an emergency.

Not all my kids have cel phone…YET.

Because they are young, I need to make sure the little ones first know Mom and Dad’s Cel phone number and then they must know where to go in an emergency. The kids could be at a play date, or in the library with a friend. They need to understand to stay with an adult, if at all possible contact us.

If they are alone or with friends head to the “safe meeting” place we’ve already discussed.

I’m hoping this never actually happens, but if it does, the peace of mind you will get from knowing your family is safe and prepared is worth the hour you put into your emergency kit/plan.

Monster Guardkids-kit

After this spring’s forest fires in Fort McMurray I’ve given a lot of thought to being prepared. I know there are times when I think, Really is it really going to happen?

But, the truth of the matter is, it does happen and if you are prepared for an emergency you will be better off then most.

Think short term and long term.

So here’s a question…someone knocks on your door and says you have ten minutes to get out of your home. What do you take and is it accessible without climbing up to the attic?

Erin ( the voice of reason) responded with – My passport.

That’s it. That’s what she would grab. Why? Because it’s her lifeline to her identity, her finances and all the important info that authorities need to see.

Pauline’s response – My fire safe. Again important documents and necessary emergency id. Is it accessible? She’ll never tell 🙂

Rebecca’s response – Wallet and Phone. It’s always about ID. Then it’s about being able to contact my kids/family.

These three responses are great, but in the event that there is no power, you have no transportation and there is a lack of communication. Where are you going to go now?

The banks are not going to be able to hand over cash and if by some miracle they do have a limited supply you are not going to get all you want. Credit cards and ATM are not going to be working. The local drug store will not be handing out medications on a whim.

And then you’ve got to remember there will be people everywhere. So do you have a “plan” with your family? Make sure they all know where a meet up point is.

On a good note if you stopped into your local dentist, I’m thinking they’d give you a toothbrush and toothpaste!

So….Create a plan. Write it down, step by step because the hardest thing in an emergency is not panicking.

Get a “Grab and go” bag ready

Medications, over the counter/prescriptions. Copies of Birth Cert. Cash. Toiletries. Pre-packaged food. Small first-aid kit. List of Phone Numbers. Change of clothes.

Now put this bag in the front hall closet and tell your family where it is.

Get Prepared Guidekit

Yes, it’s here and you’re lovin it!

But with summer comes schedules, play dates, holidays and camps. It can be very overwhelming and it can start to bring your summer experience down.

As Professional Organizers number #1 rule – stay on top of activites with a large printable calendar that can be posted two weeks out on your fridge or command centre.

We use google calendars and they do work really well, but sometimes SEEING the on-slot of events right in front of you for a two week period will help you stress to your family

” It’s just too busy” and you might actually be able to book some “DOWN TIME”.

We’re all about digital calendars, but we also find that grandparents and babysitters cannot always access family calendars, so having a large printable one helps everyone.

Another hint: Highlight each activity with a different colour and correspond that colour with the person doing the activity. Annie ( Red) going for a play date on Thursday gets highlighted RED, so that even youngsters can look at a calendar and know that if they see their “colour” coming up that they have something going on.

 

Enjoy your summer days. It will be gone in a blink of the eye. Slow it down. Pay attention to those around you. They are growing up and soon those summer days will be gone.

good day