Posts by Vlasta Hillger

Taking Back the Time I Waste on Social Media

social media

We love social media. Some of us admit to being downright addicted to checking our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts many, many times a day. I’ve come to realize all my social media “checking” comes at a big cost. This cost is time, energy, stress and anxiety.

Josh and Ryan, aka “The Minimalists,” spoke at The Neptune theater in Seattle recently, and told their story of how they rescued their lives from debt and consumerism to a huge captive audience. It was an instructional evening in many ways, but my main take away

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13 Reasons Why You Should Declutter Your Teen’s Room

13 reasons why you should declutter your teen's bedroom.
Teens might roll their eyes at their parents and seem to heed only what their friends say and do, but parental interaction is still very important to them. Among your many jobs as a parent, you are critical in preparing your teen to launch into college and adulthood. Teaching your teen how to take care of their living space and belongings is an important life skill. Let your teen know that you’d like to spend some time with them spring cleaning (sprucing up, updating) their bedroom. Make an appointment with your teen if you have trouble finding time to work together. If they resist, negotiate with them or offer up a small reward of something they want.

 

13 Reasons Why Decluttering Your Teen’s Room is Important

  1.  Working together to clean up and organize their bedroom is great quality time with your teen. You may find items that remind both of you of a family trip or a funny event. Keep the mood light, laugh together.
  2. You are teaching your teen good life skills. Bring a trash bag, a recycling bin, a box for donations,
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5 Master Bedroom Organizing Hacks for More Serenity

calm bedroom oasis

We build large master bedroom suites with the intention of using them as an oasis for rest and relaxation.  Then we use our master bedroom as a playroom, an office and a home theater. If you want your oasis back, along with more relaxation, serenity and calm in your life, consider the following organizing hacks for your bedroom.

Keep the top of your dresser and nightstand clear. Open, clear spaces are restful for the eyes.

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Put your Spring Home Maintenance on Auto-Pilot

home maintenance

Home Maintenance is an on-going process. Trees need trimming, gutters and windows need cleaning, the garage needs a once-over. It is easy to postpone or forget about these tasks when actually, we can simplify our lives by putting these activities on auto-pilot.
Your local gutter cleaning company can take two home maintenance tasks off your to-do list right now. Schedule to have your roof and gutters cleaned twice a year, once in the spring

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My Personal Definition of Minimalism

An uncluttered family room, minimalism

Many years ago, when I first heard the term “minimalism,” I pictured a loft style space with high ceilings, tall bare windows, stark white walls and sparse white leather furniture. Surely, no one with children could lead a minimalist lifestyle. Families and minimalism were mutually exclusive in my mind. I firmly believed that you couldn’t be a Costco shopper and a minimalist at the same time. I was wrong.

 
Minimalism isn’t a harsh decorating style or a strict lifestyle regime.  It’s a big picture value system about the volume of stuff we “need” in our lives. Minimalists have “stuff,”

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An ADHD Story: My Son Might be a Mad Scientist

Doc Brown Back to the Future
Remember Doc, the white haired, mad eyed inventor from Back to the Future? Do you remember the scene where Marty goes to visit Doc in his workshop and walks through a cluttered kitchen where a complex Rube Goldberg machine is set up to feed the dog?  My twelve-year-old son with ADHD is a modern-day younger Doc.

My son’s recent projects include: Various robots made with Makeblock; An Arduino powered laser pointer mechanism designed to entertain our cats; a Lego EV3 cobra

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Moving? 6 Reasons Why You Should Get Help from a Professional Organizer

A boy sitting in a moving box.
Whatever the reason for your move, the process of moving is at once exciting and overwhelming. You may be managing a long to do list to get your home ready for sale. During the moving process, it can feel like a thousand different pieces are moving at the same time, all in addition to the demands of your daily life.

 

Working with Simplify Experts, we can help with every step, manage the move
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Part 2 – Does the Thought of Tax Preparation Make You Panic?  You Are Not Alone

Organize your paperwork

Unless you are an accountant, for many of us, filing our tax returns ranks on the list of fun activities right next to root canals. Some of us get through this yearly chore one way or another and file our taxes by the deadline.

For others, it is not so easy. Many Americans who struggle with this deadline may end up paying hefty penalties for filing their taxes late or not at all. There could be many potential reasons for filing late, but for some, the reason is simply disorganization.

All over the United States families struggle with the volume of paper coming into the home. Catalogues, magazines, kids’ schoolwork and projects, work papers, receipts, oh and – mail, enter our homes daily.

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Five Reasons to Get Started on Your Taxes Today

Don't delay, file your taxes today!
The deadline to file your 2016 taxes is on April 18, 2017. That may feel like a long time from now, but the time to file is now. According to the IRS, 20-25% of Americans wait until right before the deadline to prepare their documents and file. By then, they may be looking at extensions, or worse expensive penalties.

 

Here are five reasons to get started on your taxes today:

  1. By the end of February most financial institutions have mailed out their respective tax documents. Gathering all your documents and getting organized now will help you figure out what if anything you need is missing.
  2.  If you plan on preparing your own tax return, getting started early will help you get organized and reduce the stress of the process as well as potential mistakes on your return.
  3. Tax preparation professionals will
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Organize Your Home by Marginal Gains

Marginal gains contribute to a more organized home.

If you improve how you manage different areas of your home by just 1%, would that lead to staying more organized in the long run? You bet.

This brilliant concept, called “aggregation of marginal gains” was utilized by Dave Brailsford, who took a historically good but un-winning U.K. cycling team and made many small improvements, which contributed to their win of the Tour De France just three years later.
For the U.K. cycling team, this meant 1% improvement in a whole slew of things from aerodynamics, nutrition, healthcare, the list goes on and on, but the sum of all those incremental changes contributed to the Tour de France win. Great athletes, with incremental changes and improvements in their training regime became winning athletes.
Some families suffer

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