Eps. #317 Perfectly Planned – How to Capture Beauty and Order at the Same Time

Eps. #317 Perfectly Planned – How to Capture Beauty and Order at the Same Time

Ruth Chou Simons has come out with a tool for Kathi and fellow clutter-free people that you can start using now. Ruth’s new GraceLaced planner is a 17-month journey into documenting the daily things happening in each season of your life. It’s a time to slow down and enjoy all that God is doing.

In this episode you will:

*Hear directly from artist and author Ruth Chou Simons.

*Get motivated to start journaling those special moments you can reflect on later.

*Find out the reasons why it’s important to slow down and capture all that God’s doing in your life right now.

I am so excited about today’s podcast and can’t wait to share it with you!

Giveaway to Help You Stay Organized!

How do you up your creativity? Share your idea over on this post to be entered to win our grand prize sponsored by Harvest House Publishers so you can be creative and stay organized too.

 

 

Walk in Grace Through the Seasons

Approach each new day with purpose, led by truth from God’s Word. This 17-month planner from artist and author Ruth Chou Simons will help you organize your days and embrace the changing seasons of your heart. You will find:

  • artistically crafted weekly, monthly, and yearly calendars
  • ample space each week to keep track of to-dos and focus your intentions
  • special pages to note important birthdays or anniversaries each month
  • carefully selected, hand-lettered Scripture to encourage your heart
  • opportunities to record your prayers and favorite passages

This beautiful planner will help you practice everyday faithfulness and find God’s grace laced through each season of your life.

To purchase your GraceLaced Planner, click here.

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:
• Leave a note in the comment section below.
• Share this show on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest.

To help out the show:
• Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Special thanks to Ruth for joining me this week!

Meet Our Guest

Ruth Chou Simons

Ruth Chou Simons

Ruth Chou Simons is a bestselling author, entrepreneur, and speaker who shares her journey of how God’s grace intersects daily life through word and paintbrush at GraceLaced.com – the popular blog, online shoppe, and Instagram community that reaches over a hundred thousand daily. Her first book, GraceLaced: Discovering Timeless Truths Through Seasons of the Heart, a winner of the 2018 Christian Book Award, released September 2017.

5 Ways to Foster Creativity and Stay Organized

5 Ways to Foster Creativity and Stay Organized

Learn 5 easy ways to foster creativity and stay organized at the same time.
 
stay organized and increase your creativity
 
I come from a line of crazy, creative women.

My grandmother was a designer, and then the first woman creative director for Hallmark Cards. She toured all over the Midwest giving talks about creativity while drawing with chalk at the same time. (They were called, adorably, “Chalk Talks”.)

My mom made many of my clothes growing up and is an award-winning quilter. (She made the “guest book” for Roger’s and my wedding – a king sized quilt that everyone at our wedding signed.)

And my step-daughter Amanda, can make anything more beautiful with her lettering, drawing and a little bit of purple glitter.

If you had asked me as a young adult if I was creative, I would have given you my standard reply, “It skipped a generation.”

But now, years later, I can finally say the words “I’m creative”, because I realized that all creativity is not just about making things pretty — we can be creative in a thousand different ways. Here are a few ways I have infused creativity in my day:

  • Putting a great meal on the table;
  • Writing a loving note to a friend;
  • Putting up a fun Facebook Live video;
  • Cutting branches from our trees to make “arrangements”;
  • Mixing up essential oils to make our room smell amazing.

And we all have the opportunity to infuse a little more creativity into our day, but one thing I’ve discovered about myself is that in order for me to be creative, my creativity demands a couple of things: order and space.

So here is how I foster creativity and stay organized at the same time:

 

Create Routine

We all have the picture of the wild and free spirit who is creating everywhere she goes. Her life is one big piece of art …

But what I’ve come to understand is that your creativity needs a safe place to be let out to play. Your creativity needs some rules and structure to feel secure enough to do what it wants to do. This is why I get up at 5:00 a.m. every morning, go downstairs, feed the animals, grab a cup of coffee, and start writing. I’ve trained my creativity to show up and perform on a schedule. I no longer have to wrestle her to the ground – we have a standing date.

This routine also helps me stay organized in the morning because when I start my day the same way every day, I am able to continue my day the same way. After I write, I walk the dog with my husband, come home, clean up, and get ready for the day. One of the beautiful things about routine is that you don’t have to spend a lot of time deciding what you’ll do next. It’s already been decided for you and your brain is free to think of other, amazing creative things.

Your To Do: Where is one block of time that you could create a little routine for yourself? Create a pocket of routine in that time and then start to grow your routine to two hours. (I highly suggest starting with first thing in the morning or last thing at night.)

 

Break Routine

As much as I believe in the benefits of routine, sometimes there is value in breaking out of it, for creativity’s sake.

Right now I’m sitting in the passenger seat of our Rav 4 listening to Simon & Garfunkel’s I Am a Rock while driving in Northern California with my husband by my side (singing about 40% of the words to the song while tooling down the freeway.) This? It’s not my optimal writing situation. But, sometimes, it’s good to get out of your routine, mix things up a bit, and challenge yourself to do the hard stuff and be creative even when the circumstances don’t lend themselves to it. I love to know that I can be creative – no matter where I am or what I am doing (or whose off key singing I’m listening to). I am a warrior!

Another way I love to break routine is to dedicate a couple of times a year to just being creative. I love to get away with a few friends to a cabin or house somewhere pretty and just hunker down and write all day. This is when I can get away from laundry and errands, hang a “Do Not Disturb” sign on my email (with an auto-responder) and just concentrate on getting my creativity on.

Your To Do: Don’t have a cabin in the words? That’s OK. Take a Saturday in a Starbucks, or even rent a hotel room with a friend. (But be sure to set up the schedule ahead of time so you know when to chat and when to write. There’s nothing worse than coming home from a writer’s retreat without having written anything…)

 

Plan Out Your Day

There is something about having a well-scheduled day that forces you not only to stay on track, but actually frees up your brain to think differently.

I love scheduling my day and seeing it on paper – it helps me see my day in chunks and make plans to create.

When I’m scheduling, I try to break up my “thinking-about-how-to-write-this-article” heavy thinking with “folding-the-load-of-towels” non-thinking so that my brain has some time to be free and play. As much as I would love to concentrate my way into brilliant thoughts, most of my favorite ideas come while unloading the dishwasher and removing puggle hair from the couch.

I’ve tried a million different planners, and Iwhat I’ve learned is that I need a planner without a ton of structure. This one from Ruth Choe Simmons, The Gracelaced 17 Month Planner is just perfect for me – with enough structure to keep me on track, but enough blank spaces to give me the room I need to think outside of the lines. It’s exactly what the creative one needs: a little guidance in her life.

Your To Do: Spend just five minutes planning out what you want to get accomplished today (or, if you’re better at night, plan out what you want to get accomplished tomorrow). You will be amazed at how much more room your brain will have to be creative.

 

Organize Your Tools

One of the fastest routes to creativity is to have your tools ready and waiting for you when it’s time to create. Every night I set my coffee to auto-brew, charge my computer, and make sure that my notebook and pen are next to my writing chair before I go to bed. That way, all my tools are where I need them.

The less obstacles you have to get to your creativity, the faster you can start being creative.

Your To Do: Define what your tools are and where you are going to keep them that will require the least amount of hassle.

 

Create Some Space

“Clutter makes me creative!”, we scream. But, actually, all the research says the exact opposite.

We do our best work in an area where we are free from distractions, and let’s be clear; all clutter is a distraction.

Your To Do: Create a space where you can be as free from distraction as possible. An uncluttered area where you can create keeps your mind on the beauty of what you are creating, not the clutter that is trying to steal you attention.

 

stay organized and creative giveaway

Giveaway to Help You Stay Organized!

How do you up your creativity? Share your idea below and you will be entered to win our grand prize sponsored by Harvest House Publishers so you can be creative and stay organized too.

 

Declutter Before and After: Tina’s Story

Declutter Before and After: Tina’s Story

Get motivated to declutter YOUR home with this declutter before and after story.


Tina knows the feeling of overwhelm all too well. Chronic depression made getting started on a project seem impossible. Tina found help when she received a copy of the book Clutter Free, by Kathi Lipp. In the beginning, she says, “I would go and stand in the room and just stare. At everything. And not know where to begin. Sometimes I’d walk out and other times I’d put in 15 minutes.”

Can you relate?

Tina ’s clutter challenge was boxes of paper from many years past, some stuff that belonged to her kids and other things that were her Grandparents’. It all needed to be sorted and passed on to her siblings. She also accumulated things over the years that she had a hard time letting go of, even though they had no sentimental value.

declutter before and after
The most valuable Clutter-Free tip Tina used was asking herself the 3 questions:

  • Do you love it?
  • Would you buy it again?
  • Do you need it?

This simple tip helped Tina so much. She said, “I took my boys their things. I went through my closet a number of times, once passing on 16 pairs of good shoes. I passed on purses and clothes I never used to my daughter-in-law, who has an online store. Many things went to the thrift store. I passed on books I’ve had for years and never read. Out went about 12 cook books!”

She started calling her “junk room” her office and eventually shredded boxes of old bills, bank statements, etc. “My husband used to say ‘Less is more’. I believe him now!

Tina learned that she did not enjoy clutter. She just thought that was how people lived because she grew up in a cluttered home.
“I like to have a place for everything and everything in its place. I’m not a stickler about it, but if I’m going to another room and see something that goes in that room, then I’ll take it with me and put it in its place. I still have more to do but I can now use my office as a reading room, a quiet place, an exercise area,” Tina says.

I’m so thankful to Kathi Lipp!” she exclaims. “Her books, videos, blog and Facebook group inspires me. I could not have done this without her tips and encouragement.”

If you could use some encouragement in your battle against Clutter, why not head over to the kindest corner of the internet, Kathi Lipp’s Clutter Free Academy Facebook group? There, you’ll find encouragement, tips and motivation to continue the practice of living Clutter Free.

BONUS Episode #316b- Organizing Genius: How to be Creative and Organized at the Same Time

BONUS Episode #316b- Organizing Genius: How to be Creative and Organized at the Same Time

Those of us who are the most creative also are usually the ones who have the hardest time finding our tools to get our genius on. In this bonus episode of Clutter Free Academy, join Kathi as she chats with author of Simple Organizing Melissa Michaels as she discusses the key to being organized and creative at the same time (it really is possible)!

Melissa is the New York Times Best Selling author and super blogger at The Inspired Room. She has dedicated much of her time to making sure that we can live with order and structure, but still have a house that reflects who you are.

In this info-filled interview, you will learn how to
• make the most of the space you have
• understanding when to display what you love and when to contain the clutter
• stop feeling overwhelmed by your stuff

I’m thrilled to have Melissa on the podcast – so buckle up those kiddos, grab your phone and let’s dive in.

Insider Info

Want to be entered to win the Harvest House Simple Organizing Grand Prize pack? You’ll win everything you see below including a copy of every Melissa Michaels’ books!

Head over to the blog and enter to win!

Free Organizing Challenge

Participate in Harvest House’ free organizing challenge hosted at https://go.harvesthousepublishers.com/simpleorganizing.

This four-week challenge goes through: 1. The entryway, 2. The kitchen, 3. Office and creative spaces, and 4. Kid’s rooms. Each week includes organizing tips for that space, and then a practical DIY (weekend project) to tackle. The whole challenge is focused on organizing beautifully. Who doesn’t want that?

Meet Our Guest

Melissa Michaels

Melissa Michaels

Melissa Michaels, Creator of the award-winning blog The Inspired Room, is the author of the New York Times bestseller Love The Home You Have, Make Room for What You Love, The Inspired Room coffee table book, and Simple Decorating.

Learn more at https://theinspiredroom.net/

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:
• Leave a note in the comment section below.
• Share this show on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest.

To help out the show:
• Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Special thanks to Melissa for joining me this week. Next week you’ll want to come back because we have Ruth Chou Simons of Gracelaced joining the podcast!

Eps: #316: Simple Organizing with Melissa Michaels of the Inspired Room

Eps: #316: Simple Organizing with Melissa Michaels of the Inspired Room

If you long to be organized, but also want a space that is cute and cozy, this is the podcast for you. Listen in for all the tips and tricks that will help you create the space you love to live in.

Melissa is the New York Times Best Selling author and super blogger at The Inspired Room. She has dedicated much of her time to making sure that we can live with order and and structure, but still have a house that reflects who you are.

In this info-filled interview, you will learn how to
• make the most of the space you have
• understanding when to display what you love and when to contain the clutter
• stop feeling overwhelmed by your stuff

I’m thrilled to have Melissa on the podcast – so buckle up those kiddos, grab your phone and let’s dive in.

A HUGE GIVEAWAY FROM HARVEST HOUSE!

Want to be entered to win the Harvest House Simple Organizing Grand Prize pack? You’ll win everything you see below including a copy of every Melissa Michaels’ books!

Head over to the blog and enter to win!

Meet Our Guest

Melissa Michaels

Melissa Michaels

Melissa Michaels, Creator of the award-winning blog The Inspired Room, is the author of the New York Times bestseller Love The Home You Have, Make Room for What You Love, The Inspired Room coffee table book, and Simple Decorating.

Learn more at https://theinspiredroom.net/

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:
• Leave a note in the comment section below.
• Share this show on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest.

To help out the show:
• Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Special thanks to Melissa Michaels for joining me this week. Come back on Thursday for a special BONUS episode!

The Simply Organized Home – 10 Cute Ways to Contain All that Stuff

The Simply Organized Home – 10 Cute Ways to Contain All that Stuff

The Simply Organized Home – Learn ten cute ways to store your stuff. 

The Simply Organized Home -- Kathi Lipp
 
Oh friend, when it comes to having a cute house you love to live in and look at, you really only have two options: either make sure your stuff is cute, or make sure your storage is. (I wish there were a third option, like something from Star Trek where you push a button and whatever you want either materializes or disappears, but sadly, I think we are still a few years from that.)

It’s great when your stuff is beautiful and you want to put it on display. But we all have those necessities of life that need to be stored out of sight, but not out of mind. (When I need that bottle of Tylenol, I want to know where it is, no matter how cute the storage is.)

So how do you have cute storage and find things at the same time? Here are some ideas to keep you – and your house – cute and organized.

 

I’ve taken a lot of these ideas from Melissa Michaels’s new book Simple Organizing: 50 Ways to Clear the Clutter. (Check out my interviews with her this Tuesday and Thursday on the podcast.)

 

The Simply Organized Home: Contain Your Stuff

Look around at the items you need handy on a regular basis and see if there is a way you can contain them in something cute.

 

Bathroom Toiletries

Use white canisters for things you’d like to hide, and clear, glass canisters for things pretty enough to display. (Cotton balls come to mind.)

Anything can look tidier when you put it in a container.
 


 

The stuff on my kitchen sink went from scattered to downright adorable once I put it all in this white enamel bucket from grove.co.

 

Laundry Supplies

One of my favorite ways to keep the laundry area tidy is to use a tissue holder to dispense dryer sheets. Also, having a little garbage can for used dryer sheets, lint and oddities left over from someone’s pockets is a way to keep things looking lovely. I use glass containers for my Homemade HE laundry detergent as well as my Method laundry pods.

 

Makeup

I love a good makeup caddy (this one is a lot like the one I use.) The key to a cute makeup caddy is to:

1) not overstuff it – just store in it what you actually use;

2) throw it in the dishwasher once a month to keep it looking great.

 

Cooking Utensils

My most valuable real estate in my house is my kitchen counter space. But I also love to have some of my tools within easy grasp when I’m cooking. Use crocks to store utensils on the counter for a fun, country feel.

Look at how Melissa stores her antique wooden spoon collection! Adorable!

 

Coffee Supplies

We are coffee lovers, and we don’t mind if the world knows it. We put our addiction out there for the world to see. We use glass canisters to hold our coffee and filters, and ceramic canisters to house our Splenda and KCups. I’ve turned this corner of my kitchen into my favorite coffee bar.

 

Office Supplies

Of course, my goal is to have as little paperwork as possible (because, the best-looking paperwork is NO paperwork). But for the papers I do need to keep, I use my galvanized bucket with file folders. For office supplies, I use a combination of fabric shoe boxes and filing boxes in neutral colors. So simple, so cute!

 

The Simply Organized Home: Embrace Every Day On Display

One of the concepts I love in Melissa’s book is the idea of “Every Day on Display,” which is simply the act of taking what you already have and arranging it in a beautiful way. Here are some ways to take everyday necessities and turn them into something beautiful so you can have a simply organized home.
 

Bulletin Boards

One of the things I love about bulletin boards is their ability to tell a story about your space. Don’t overcrowd your board, but leave enough space that it becomes a feature, and a focus of the room.

 

Silverware Caddy

When the handles of your silverware are this cute, you want to put them on display. (Plus, if you hate to do dishes as much as I do, you will feel like you’re cheating when you just dump your silverware into a basket.)

 

Buy Cute

When shopping for that new coffee grinder or your next pair of scissors, decide whether you are going to need to contain them or find something that is cute enough to be on display. Normal scissors? Boring. Pink-handled scissors? They demand to be on display.

 

Consider the Finish

If you decide on a finish for a room, and buy containers with that design, it can pull together the whole look of the space. Here are some of the finishes I have in my house that I just can’t get enough of:

  • White enamel
  • Galvanized metal
  • Fabric
  • Wicker

So much of the time, having a simply organized, beautiful space isn’t about your stuff  – it’s about how you’ve arranged your stuff to make it beautiful.

 

Would You Like to Have a Simply Organized Home?

 


 
What’s your favorite way to stay cute and organized at the same time? Comment below, and you will be entered to win this Simple Organizing gift pack from Harvest House Publishers in celebration of Melissa’s new book Simple Organizing: 50 Ways to Clear the Clutter!

 

Join the You Don't Have to Try So Hard Book Club

We'll be conducting the book club through Kathi's Private Facebook Group, Clutter Free Academy. Join the book club to get access to the private facebook group. You'll receive an email with instructions once you submit this form. 

Check your email for more instructions!