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The Home and Office Organizing Blog
Friday, October 28, 2005

Double Duty Bedrooms

Many people have guest bedrooms that double as home offices. Here are some tips to keep the office part functional, while maintaining the bedroom comfort for guests.

1. Flat screen LCD monitors can do double duty as a computer monitor and a television. Many offer a switch so that you can plug the cable and monitor cord into the screen and switch between them. Or tv cards are available for many computers that not only allow you to feed the tv signal through your computer, but also allows you to split the screen so you can watch tv while you work. In addition, most tv cards come with a program that works like TIVO, allowing you to record your favorite shows right to your computer hard drive.

2. Daybeds are a nice way to to provide sleeping space and a comfortable place to read. But dont underestimate Murphy beds or sleeper sofas. Advances in technology and manufacturing have eliminated that uncomfortable bar that we all identify sofa beds with, and Murphy beds have made a big come back by using advanced materials such as carbon fiber. These new materials make them lighter and increase the design possibilities.

3. Opt for shelving units that close up so when guests stay you can hide your work behind closed doors.

I hope these simple tips help you arrange your guest bedroom/office so that you can create a productive and comfortable space.

Take care.

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Thursday, October 27, 2005

Organizing Your Music

The days of CD racks are coming to an end. They are being replaced by iPods and other mp3 players that can put entire music libraries in the palm of your hand. Take it wherever you like, listen to your library in the car, at the gym, at home and at work. And by jumping into the world of mp3 you also get to free up all that space now designated for CDs. The process is simple. There are many software packages and devices available to make the jump with. I recommend iTunes software (it's free) and an iPod (not so free, but worth it). Prices for an iPod range from $99 for the shuffle which holds a half gig to $399 for the whopping 60 gig storage with video capabilities. A rough guide is that each gig holds about 250 songs or 25 albums. But don't worry about getting an iPod that can hold your entire library, your computer can do that for you, and you can easily rotate the contents of your iPod at will. Getting your music into your computer is made simple by iTunes. Once the software is installed all you have to do is put your CDs into the computer and push a button. Really! It is that easy. The software will do the rest. It will go online and download the CD information such as song names and album names, and it will copy the songs onto your hard drive. Once your CDs are in your computer, pack them up and put them in storage.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Getting Organized With Style for the Holidays

The holidays are a joyous time, but they can also be stressful. This year try these organizing tips to cut down on the stress and focus your energy on having fun.
1. Rotate
The holidays bring a change of season, which means a change in our activities and wardrobes. Set aside a day in your calendar to rotate your wardrobe and activity equipment. Put away the golf clubs and beach gear and replace them with the skis and winter coats. It’s good to do this ahead of the time when you will need them. This gives you a chance to inspect the items and have them repaired or replaced before they become a necessity. This helps to reduce frantic last minute trips that are compounded by busy holiday traffic.
2. Start blogging.
That’s right, start your own family blog. There are many web sites like Google’s, Blogger that provide blog capabilities for free. The blog helps you get your family on the same page, literally for the holidays. All family members can contribute to the blog giving their schedules, menu desires and even their gift wish lists. The best part about the blog is that getting on the same page only takes a few moments of each family members time. Instead of calling everybody, you simply post once and the information is available for the family to view and make comments of their own. To see a sample of a family holiday blog, go to www.organizedwithstyle.com
3. Make room
The holidays have a funny way of making our homes feel smaller. Maybe it is the out of town guests sleeping in the den, the decorations strung about, the extra china set, or the cold that keeps us cooped up inside. Whatever it is, don’t let the holidays shrink your home. Do a pre-holiday inventory and make an effort purgde items you havn’t used in over a year. Not only will it make more room during the holidays, you can also start the holidays off on a giving note by dropping off unwanted clothes and other items to charities such as the Salvation Army.
These are a few ideas to help you cut down on stress and make the holidays a little more enjoyable.

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