Sunday, September 27, 2009

Let's hear it!

Hello fellow bloggers! After 7 days of blogger problems, I am BACK. Back and asking for YOUR best timesaving tips when it comes to household chores. Post away!

I am doing an upcoming segment on Studio 5 on October 13th. And if your idea has that WOW factor, I will demonstrate it on the show and give you credit on the air for your FAB idea!!! How cool is that??

So, tell your friends, families and neighbors to post there FAVS here. BUT there is a catch!
You have just ONE week to leave your comments, ONE week! SO, blog away, people, I know I count on you!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Your "Essentials Box."

Before moving or relocating, everyone should prepare an essentials box, a box full of items you'll need for your last few nights before you move and/or the first few nights in your new home.

This should be the last box you pack before you move. However, it's a good idea, while you're going through the cupboards, drawers and shelves, to identify what you'll need for the first few hours/days in your new home and set them aside or start adding them to your essentials box.

This box will be the first box you open and should include items that will enable you to provide small meals, clean, deal with small emergencies and possibly entertain you while you unpack the rest of your home or in case the movers are delayed.

Some people opt for packing an essentials box for every room in their house. You can do this if you feel the need to for sanity purposes those first few days. Others prefer to pack just one box they can travel with.

Here is a list of what is needed in your Essentials Box:
  • Toilet Paper (one for each bathroom)
  • Hand soap (one for each bathroom and the kitchen sink)
  • Hand towel (one for each bathroom)
  • Dish soap
  • Dishtowel and dishcloth
  • All-purpose cleaner (unopened)
  • Cleaning Buckets
  • Paper Towels (at least 2 rolls)
  • Snacks
  • Beverages
  • Pet food and dishes
  • Radio
  • Paper plates, forks, knives, spoons and cups
  • All-purpose cutting knife
  • Scissors or utility knife (to open the rest of your boxes)
  • Small emergency / first aid kit
  • Flashlight/candles/matches
  • Shower curtain (nothing worse than forgetting this one!)
  • Shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothbrush, floss, and paste
  • Flat iron, hairspray
  • A change of clothing and towel for each member of the family.
  • Garbage bags
  • Portable tool kit

For the Kids (to keep them occupied)

  • Portable DVD/ TV player and DVD's
  • Portable video games and music (Nintendo DS, Gameboy, iPod, etc.)
  • Coloring Books and Crayons
  • Favorite snacks and games
You may not be ready to pack your Essentials Box yet, but that doesn't mean you can't start making a list of items to include. The rule of thumb is to include all essentials that you'll need for at least 24 hours. Presumably, there's a grocery or convenience store nearby, but just in case, you should have some food stuff on hand that you can quickly prepare for your family.

After you've prepared your Essentials Box, take it with you in the car or in the cab of the moving van if you're moving yourself. Again, this will be the last box packed, and the first one you open!

Monday, September 14, 2009

What NOT to pack whe you move.

Believe it or not, there are some items that require special packing and handling, items that moving companies will not move if they are not properly prepared. Even if you're moving yourself, you may want to take extra care in packing certain items, especially if you're moving a long distance.

Dangerous Goods

Any material that is flammable, corrosive or explosive is dangerous and illegal to move. If you have dangerous goods, call your local recycling pickup service, fire station or the closest EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) office to find out how you can properly dispose of these items. Or ask a neighbor or friend if they could use the item.

Here is a list of items that should not be packed:

  • Acid
  • Sterno
  • Darkroom Chemicals
  • Pesticides
  • Motor Oil
  • Gasoline
  • Charcoal
  • Lighter Fluid
  • Fertilizer
  • Paints
  • Car Batteries
  • Matches
  • Nail Polish & Remover
  • Ammunition
  • Liquid Bleach
  • Aerosols
  • Kerosene
  • Pool Chemicals
  • Chemistry Sets
  • Fireworks
  • Motor Oil
  • Paint Thinner
  • Batteries
  • Loaded Weapons
  • Weed Killer
  • Ammonia
  • Lamp Oil
  • Propane
  • Cleaning Fluid
  • Perishables

If your move is local, proper packing and storage can enable you to take perishables with you. Just be careful with meat, eggs and dairy products. Spoiling can happen quickly even in colder.

If your move is long distance, dispose of all perishables and find a new home for your plants. If you're moving household and outdoor plants, make sure they are properly packed and stored.

Items of High Value

High-value doesn't necessarily mean it has a high price value, rather it is sentimental or a "can't live without" item. Think of them as the "can't live without them" stuff, things that you might grab if racing out of fire. If we're moving any distance, photocopy all important documents such as any identification, licenses, insurance records, etc... Just in case.

So when you're packing, think twice about shipping the following items with the moving company or on the moving truck:

  • Personal Files (marriage license, passport, birth certificate, wills, insurance papers)
  • Home Movies or Personal Video Tapes
  • Address Books
  • Flight Tickets
  • Financial Statements
  • Photos
  • Photo Albums
  • Car Keys, house keys, safety box keys
  • Deeds
  • Tax Records
  • School Records
  • Check Books
  • Jewelry
  • Collections (art, coins, stamps, etc...)
  • Letters
  • Stocks
  • Computer Software
  • Computer Back-up Disks
  • Medicine
  • Children's artwork

These items are often overlooked, don't let this be you. No one wants a flammable substance to explode or not access to medicine while you are going through the chaos of moving. So take the time to be prepared!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Start Packing!

1. Decide what you like and use the most.

Statistically, a typical American household uses less than 20% of what they own on a regular basis. This 20% should be the focus of what you pack first.To determine the 20% that's useful, do the following:

  • A few months or weeks before moving day, purchase some sticker dots and mark an item with a dot whenever you use it.
  • When you move, only pack items with dots.
  • In your closet, tie a piece of ribbon or string around the top of a clothes hanger. When you wear an article of clothing, put your clothes back on the empty side of the marked hanger. You'll soon know what you wear and what just takes up closet space.
  • For your garage or basement, buy different-colored storage bins and put items into them as you use them, so you can determine what you use most.

2. Pack nonessentials first.

Here is a general list of things that can be packed weeks in advance:

  • Out of season clothing and shoes
  • Wall art, paintings, pictures
  • Rarely used kitchen gadgets & cookware (waffle iron, bread maker, cappuccino machine, fondue, ice cream maker, etc.)
  • Fine China and Flatware
  • Books
  • DVDs and CD's (with the exception of favorites that can be watched on moving day)
  • Towels and Bedding
  • Food Storag

3. Toss as you go:

  • Keep a bag or box for donations as you pack things up
  • Carry several large garbage bags for things that need to be discarded

4. Be a stickler at detailing the contents of each box:

  • Although time consuming, you will thank yourself later when you are trying to find something specific in the chaos of a move that you carefully detailed each box

5. Give each room a specific color code

  • Whether you buy inexpensive sticker dots, or color code your boxes with different colors of permanent marker, each room in your new house should have different color dot that corresponds with the color on your moving boxes.

  • Pack like items together in the room they are intended to go in your new home.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Moving Boxes: Finding the right type of boxes for your move

Getting the right moving box isn't going to make or break your move, but it will help to ensure your stuff arrives at its new home all in one piece...and it may save you some time, perhaps some money and a few days stuck on the couch with a sore back or strained muscles from lifting boxes that are too heavy or too cumbersome to manage. So find out what kind of boxes are avaliable, what you might need to move your stuff, then get packing.

How to Shop for Moving Boxes:

Planning is the most important first step. Complete an inventory of what you have to pack so you can get an idea of the type and quantity of items that you need to move. You can purchase ready-made moving kits online – often delivered overnight -- that provide the right quantity of boxes and moving supplies for your move.When you are shopping for moving boxes, you will see them presented with their 3 inside dimensions in the following order: length, width and then height or depth. For example, a standard medium moving box will be shown with the dimensions of 18 x 14 x 12, which indicates the boxes’ length, width and height if you are looking from the top down into the box.Moving box manufacturers have created several types of boxes, specially designed for moving household items. Normal moving box types and sizes include:

  • Medium Boxes (18x14x12) – These are industry standard boxes that are versatile and can be used for a number of common household items. You can use these boxes to store books, collectibles, kitchenware and most of your other household items.Medium sized moving boxes are best suited for a mix of some heavy household goods combined with some light items
  • Large Moving Boxes (20x20x15) - Large sized moving boxes are all-purpose moving boxes that can be packed with heavy items, but can still be carried easily.
  • Extra Large Moving Boxes (23x23x16) – Extra large moving boxes are best suited for light goods such as bedding, drapes, towels and clothing that you do not place in a separate wardrobe box. Do not place too many items in a large moving box as it can become unwieldy to lift and carry.

Keeping Items Safe:

The most common cause of damage during a move comes from the vibration of items inside your box during transport. If you leave space within the box or you have not properly wrapped the items in padding and bubble wrap, you will leave open space that create movement of your items inside the box.

With too much space, a sudden jolt could cause your items to penetrate the box and be left open or exposed in the truck for the remainder of the trip.Insist your movers use quality packing tape, packing paper and bubble wrap. Even if you fill up boxes with clothes, blankets or pillows, you are providing more protection against shifting of items inside the boxes.This small extra investment upfront can pay big dividends. Just a few damaged dishes or other expensive items can create an expense far exceeding the cost of the extra packing materials. (And as always, check out moving insurance for futher protection.)

Other Important AccessoriesOther items that are important to have on hand, along with your quality moving boxes, include:

  • LabelsBox
  • Markers
  • Sofa Covers
  • Packing Tape
  • Packing paper
  • Bubble Wrap
  • Furniture Pads
How many boxes do I need?
Determining the number of boxes you’ll need for your move can seem like a daunting task, but there are some general guidelines that can assist you for estimation. You may choose to purchase one of the moving box packs available, which include a variety of boxes in a quantity that meets the needs of the average mover according to the size of their home. There are also online calculators that will provide you with a recommended number of boxes in relation to the size of your residence and the quantity of materials you’ll be transporting.

Few factors will weight on the success of your move like moving boxes. It might sound like an exaggeration, but think about it: if you have cheap, flimsy boxes, there's a much higher likelihood that they'll fail, and your things will break, plan accordingly.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Map out a plan


  • Map out your packing schedule (draw it out on a piece of paper, have fun with it)
  • Pack room by room in order of use (decorations can be packed first)
  • Toss any boxes you have not opened in the last year or that you have never opened from your previous move. Holiday decorations and keepsakes should be your only exception.
  • Color code each room on your map so you can mark the boxes accordingly.

Taking time to map things out and create a master plan will get your thoughts together so your move will go smoothly.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Back in the Saddle Again

Hello again, friends!

School started, clients galore, results in severe negelect on my blog! My apologies.

I have decided to start something new. Daily blog posts. That's right everyday. Here's how it will work:

  • I will spend seven days on one subject starting today.

  • After seven days, we will move onto another subject and do seven days of tips again.

Starting today we are going to talk about how to pack for a move. Seven tips and steps will follow. Please let me know how you like the new format.

Also, I am creating a survey for what you would like to see me do tips on the next Studio 5 segement, please let me know your thoughts. Happy September!

Packing your house for a move, Blogpost 1; Creating a Master Plan

Create a Master Plan

Whether it is a notebook, 3-ring binder, expanding file, small container, or electronic device, you need to set up a master plan for your move. This container will house everything you need for the move. Also, try to keep it small enough so it is easy for you carry anywhere you need. Included in the master plan may include and is not limited to the following:

  • Calendar of your choosing
  • Place for contractor, subs and realtor business cards
  • Phone numbers of places and people that may be important to your move
  • Utility shut on and shut of dates
  • Paint swatches, etc.
  • Info on homes you may be interested in
  • Expenses
  • Buyers and Sellers
  • Sticker Colored Dots (for color coding boxes)
  • Anything else pertaining to your move

Creating this master command center will ultimately dictate the ease of the moving process. Good Luck!

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