Get Organized

As we cruise through December, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want for 2017. I have taken steps to purge toxicity from my life and start focusing on the things that make me happy, including this blog! I am always trying to streamline and improve organization. As a creative person, I get distracted easily and having an easy to use (and pretty) system in place can help keep me on track.

A few years ago, I discovered Erin Condren life planners. I love how customizable they are and I’ve purchased a few over the years. This summer I was sucked into the world of planner stickers and it has turned my organizational tool into a beautiful scrapbook! If you are in the market for a new planner, I highly recommend the one from Erin Condren. There are a ton of sales going on right now and it would even be a great Christmas gift! Here is the 18 month planner I am currently using along with some of the accessories I picked up.

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You can also use use my referral code to save $10 off of your planner!!

https://www.erincondren.com/referral/invite/katiemccool0525

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Get Organized: Erin Condren Life Planner

I hope you all had a very happy New Year! I was able to visit my hometown and spend time with my family which was a very nice way to ring in 2015. Last year was the most difficult year of my life, but I survived and have learned so much along the way. I have tried to focus on improving my mind, body, and soul. One of the ways I have strived to achieve this is by getting more organized. With the new year rolling in it seems like a perfect time to share some of the things I’m doing around my home to keep organized starting with my brand new planner!

life planner by erin condren

When I was in school, I LOVED using a planner. By the end of the year, it would be falling apart and covered in stickers and notes. I always used The Far Side comic planner. If you’re not familiar with Gary Larson’s comic strip, you definitely need to check it out. This one is my absolute favorite.

source

Gosh, that is so good. Anyway, when they stopped making The Far Side planners, I stopped using one. I have tried to use my phone calendar but it just wasn’t the same. This year, in order to juggle rehearsals, work, events, blogging, and appointments, I decided to get back on the bandwagon. Let me tell you… I pretty much picked the prettiest wagon in town.

I did a ton of research starting back in November to find the perfect planner system for me. There are so many great options out there! I kept jumping back and forth between two options. Option one was using a printable (There are tons of planner printables available on Etsy, I love this one by iheartorganizing) and combining it with the Martha Stewart line at Staples.

i heart organizing daily planner

Option two was the beautiful Simplified Planner by Emily Ley.

Simplified Planner

Isn’t it pretty?! This was my conundrum… I loved how customizable the Martha Stewart/iheartorganizing planner could be but it sort of overwhelmed me. However, while the simplified planner was beautiful and streamlined, I kept thinking: “Can’t I, like, add a little pouch for my pens or something?”

After the Simplified Planners sold out in December, I started my search all over again. I was determined to find something before the New Year started. As much as I love Taylor Swifts new song, I really hate having blank space at the beginning of my planner.

Then… I found Erin Condren’s Life Planners. They are beautiful, customizable, and basically EVERYTHING. Guys ,there is even a little pouch for my pens!

In order to get my planner by January I decided to go with the quick ship option. It has all of the features of the customized life planners but is already assembled and ready to go! You also get a voucher in the planner with a coupon for a FREE customized, interchangeable cover! I can’t wait to pick one out, in the meantime, this is what the quick ship cover looks like… how perfect for the New Year!?

Erin Condren Life Planner

I know I have only had my planner for a few days but I absolutely love it so far! I was going to wait and share it with you once it was worn in a little bit more, but I figured that some of you may be looking for your 2015 planner and I just couldn’t wait to share!!

Plus, if you Sign up here you will receive a $10 OFF coupon for your first purchase! (Yeah, I’m not kidding. A $10 coupon for your planner and then once it arrives you can get a free customized cover if you choose the quick ship design)

Just a warning: If you love office supplies, search for “Erin Condren Planner” videos on YouTube at your own risk. There are so many ways to customize and make your planner truly unique. I am too embarrassed to tell you how many I watched while I waited for my planner to arrive. And, if the life planner isn’t your style, maybe one of the other options would fit your needs better!

So, how do you organize your life? Do you use your cell phone? Or do you like old fashioned pen and paper?

Get Organized: My Linen Closet

In older/smaller homes, storage can be a hot commodity. In my small home built in 1920, I’m fortunate for the storage options that I have. The sweet, little linen closet in my bathroom is one of these. As you may remember from my vanity and mirror update, my bathroom doesn’t have a medicine cabinet so my tiny linen closet has to store everything I need on a daily basis. Today I’m going to share how I organize and maximize my bathroom storage.

Small space solutions: linen closet organization.

When I first moved into my home, the linen closet was quite inconvenient. The bathroom door opens inward and covers the linen closet which also had it’s own door. Let’s be real here for a moment: I live alone… I rarely shut the bathroom door. So dealing with two doors when I need to grab my hair dryer was so cumbersome and frustrating.

before: frustrating door to my linen closet

I removed the closet door within the first week of moving in. It already helped it feel more open and less frustrating while getting ready every day. The next step was to make it functional, organized and a little more pretty.

So, I gave the yellowed interior a couple of coats of bright paint left over from my bathroom vanity and it instantly made the closet seem larger. Then I added in some baskets that I picked up from Jo-Ann Fabric a while back and added some of my favorite chalkboard labels to keep things organized. I love corralling items in baskets! It is a pretty way to keep everything organized. I like organization systems that are easy to maintain. Baskets are great for that. It’s just toss and go.

simple linen closet organization using baskets

In case you’re nosey like me, I’ll give you a quick rundown of how I store everything in my small space from top to bottom: On the top shelf I have extra boxes of Kleenex and a basket to store spare tubes of toothpaste, backup products, an extra toothbush and stuff like that. On the next shelf I keep my towels. I try to keep only four towels in rotation. It helps minimize towel clutter in my linen closet and It forces me to stay on top of laundry. I use all white towels for a clean, spa-like look. I also have a few spare bath bombs from Lush on that shelf.

store extra kleenex and products on the top shelf

The next shelf has all of my every day items. I use mason jars and a juice glass to store cotton rounds, cotton balls, and Q tips. Next, is my makeup bag. This is actually a Tory Burch lunch box from the Neiman Marcus line at Target a few years back. I love using a lunch box for my makeup since I store it in the bathroom. The insulation on the lunch box keeps the damp bathroom air from shortening the lifespan of my makeup. At least, in my head it helps. Anyway, the last item on the shelf is my every day basket where I keep lotions, skin care products, Ect.

everyday products stored in a basket for easy access

store cotton balls and cotton rounds in mason jars for a pretty organizational solution. If you have to store makeup in the bathroom, try using a lunch box to keep the damp air out and products stay fresh.

Below that is kind of a miscellaneous shelf. I have one basket to hold wash cloths and hand towels. The other basket has a few first aid items that I like to have readily available and don’t have any where else to store like band aids, Advil, and Cold medicine.

baskets from joann fabric for storage

The bottom shelf has all my hair stuff. The first basket has hair styling tools like my hair dryer, curling wand and straightener. The second basket has all of my products, hair brushes, and bobby pins.

baskets and chalkboard labels for pretty organization that is actually easy to maintain

That is how I keep my linen closet organized and functional. Since I’m nosey… how do you store all of your bathroom products? Are you a basket person? Does anyone else keep their makeup in a lunch box?