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Organizing Paper Clutter; Part Two

In part one of this post series we covered how to avoid paper clutter before it ever enters your home. Part two of three is all about how to quickly reduce the amount of clutter in your home, leaving only the most important things remaining. It is vital you get rid of the non-essentials (paper or otherwise). If you do not take the time to toss, the task of organizing becomes overwhelming and you waste valuable time and energy trying to manage stuff you don’t even want, much less need. The key to cutting down successfully is consistency; you must do it daily. Here are four ways to reduce your paper clutter every day. 1) Keep waste and recycle bins where you need them. We have five trash bins in our humble one bedroom apartment; the kitchen, under the bathroom sink, in the water closet, by my side of the bed, and under the desk. I also have a bin in the car. Keeping trash and recycle bins at hand greatly increases the odds that I will actually use them. Having to walk clear across the room interrupts my work flow and I tend to let the trash accumulate instead of getting rid of it. It may seem lazy but rather than fight my inner couch potato, I make tasks as simple and as easy as possible to carry out. Take a minute to consider where you could use another garbage can. Do you always pay bills at the dining…

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Organizing Paper Clutter: Part One

You may not have this life-issue, but most of the time most of my clutter consists of paper and paper related things. Between junk mail, magazines and books I haven’t read yet, receipts from every-store-I-have-ever-been-to-in-the-last-decade, flyers and notices for things I might care about, and a general plethora of paper in my apartment I just cannot keep track of it all. I am done dealing with paper. So much so, that if I had a fireplace, I’d be tempted to torch it. Instead, I’ll be calm and organize the crap out of it. Care to join me? Our approach to tackling paper clutter has three parts; today I will share part one. (Subscribe to Our Simple Nest to receive parts two and three in your inbox!) The best way to win a fight is to avoid it altogether, and the first step to winning the war against paper clutter is by avoidance. Stopping clutter before it even enters in your front door means one less piece of paper you have to deal with; a winning strategy my friends. Here are six ways to avoid paper clutter in the first place. 1) Opt-out of pre-approved credit offers and marketing notices. This simple trick will permanently reduce the amount of junk mail you receive. By opting-out your name and private information will no longer be shared by the credit bureaus with marketing companies (they are already sharing it, you have to tell them to stop) meaning you won’t receive anymore “firm offers” of credit…

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6 Tips to Simplify Meal Planning (and a Free Printable!)

Most of us know that meal planning is awesome. We realize it is a great way to save money on groceries, save time at the store and in the kitchen, eat better-for-you foods, and avoid the everyday stress of “what’s for dinner?” But sometimes the thought of planning meals for an entire week (let alone an entire month) can be overwhelming. It is so easy to get bogged down in the details and over complicate the process of planning what to eat. By keeping things simple however, you can get your meal planning done and your grocery list ready in just 15 minutes (or less) each week. Here’s how: 1) Pick your day to plan. Choose a day each week that you can devote 15 minutes to meal planning. Put it in your planner (I love these cute stickers from Etsy to remind me!) and make it a part of your routine. I like to plan Thursday or Friday for the following week. Store ads and coupons are usually ready by then and I have one less thing to do over the weekend. 2) Make a list of your family’s favorite meals. Putting together a list of what you like to eat might seem redundant, but when you’re pressed for time it is so easy to forget that your hubby likes chicken parmesan. Jot all your favorites down and keep the list handy, adding to it when you discover (or remember) a top pick. This list will become a tried and trusted…

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