Organization http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/1605/all en-US Best Money Tips: Organize Your Life and Save Money http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-organize-your-life-and-save-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-organize-your-life-and-save-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/stressed_woman_000056327992.jpg" alt="Woman learning to organize her life and save money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on ways to organize your life and save money, how to ask for a promotion, and ways to make your batteries last longer.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://ptmoney.com/organize-your-life-save/">5 Ways to Organize Your Life and Save Money</a> &mdash; Keep a family calendar to track when you need to buy gifts and do home and car maintenance, and what meals you'll be making at home. [PT Money]</p> <p><a href="http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/blog/how-to-ask-for-a-promotion/">How to ask for a promotion</a> &mdash; You won't get a promotion if you just walk in and ask for it. You'll need to do a lot of preparation to get what you want. [I Will Teach You To Be Rich]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thepennyhoarder.com/how-to-make-batteries-last-longer/">6 Ways to Make Your Batteries Last Longer, Including a Device Called the Batteriser</a> &mdash; Rotate out your used batteries. The remote-control car won't work, but there might be enough juice in the batteries for a clock or remote control. [The Penny Hoarder]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/LinkedIn-Mistakes-37935382">19 Terrible LinkedIn Mistakes You're Making</a> &mdash; Make sure to personalize connection requests. It'll feel less spammy and the recipient will be more open to your request. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/The-Bite/2015/0721/Looking-up-restaurant-info-No-one-uses-an-app-for-that">Looking up restaurant info? No one uses an app for that.</a> &mdash; There seems to be an app for everything, but it turns out that few diners actually download apps for their favorite restaurants. [The Monitor]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.themoneyprinciple.co.uk/how-safe-are-your-savings-and-what-to-do-about-it/">How Safe are Your Savings? (And what to do about it?)</a> &mdash; Your savings may not be as safe as you think they are. It's important to keep up with the news and watch for warning signs of economic and financial trouble. [The Money Principle]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/10-ways-to-keep-your-kids-busy-this-summer">10 Ways to Keep Your Kids Busy This Summer</a> &mdash; Check your local zoos, children&rsquo;s museums, and art museums for summer passes or memberships at reduced rates. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://moneysmartlife.com/save-money-on-youth-sports-equipment-fees/">How to Save Money on Youth Sports Equipment &amp; Fees</a> &mdash; Stock up on easily lost items &mdash; like balls and water bottles &mdash; when they go on sale. [Money Smart Life]</p> <p><a href="http://couponpal.com/blog/the-11-best-food-tours-in-the-world">The 11 Best Food Tours in the World</a> &mdash; Scott's Pizza Tours in New York City takes you to the best pizzas in Little Italy and Greenwich Village! [CouponPal]</p> <p><a href="http://www.aspiringmillionaire.com/2015/07/4-ways-to-expand-your-business-sponsored.html">4 Ways to Expand Your Business</a> &mdash; See if you can get your customers to spend more by providing a new product or service that complements your current offerings. [Aspiring Millionaire]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-organize-your-life-and-save-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-ways-to-count-and-cash-in-your-change">Best Ways to Count (and Cash in) Your Change</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-throw-out-today">25 Things to Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">A Denim Expert Reveals Why You Only Need 3 Pairs of Jeans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-save-money-with-credit-cards">10 Tricks to Save Money with Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/bulk-buying-basics-what-to-buy-how-to-store-and-money-saving-tips">Bulk Buying Basics: What to Buy, How to Store, and Money Saving Tips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization best money tips save money Wed, 22 Jul 2015 19:00:24 +0000 Amy Lu 1499061 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Simple Ways to Save Money by Tracking Your Receipts http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-ways-to-save-money-by-tracking-your-receipts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-simple-ways-to-save-money-by-tracking-your-receipts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_with_receipts_000047774388.jpg" alt="Woman keeping track of receipts and saving money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Receipts are often annoying little pieces of paper that we disregard or forget about &mdash; that is, until we need to exchange an item or file expenses. Although it might take a little effort, keeping track of your receipts can help you better manage your financial life and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/39-tips-thatll-save-you-hundreds-on-your-next-trip-0">save money</a>. Here's how.</p> <h2>1. Missed Discounts</h2> <p>Did you know that some retailers will offer a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-get-a-sale-price-match-at-16-popular-stores">retroactive discount</a> in the event you forget to use a coupon when you originally purchase? It's true. Even if you forget to use a coupon at the store, you can walk back in and ask customer service to help you.</p> <p>When I forgot to use a 20% off coupon for a purchase I made at Bed Bath &amp; Beyond, I took the original receipt and coupon to the customer service desk and received a credit of the same 20% savings on a future purchase. Having this receipt handy saved me a good chunk of change.</p> <h2>2. Survey Savings</h2> <p>I've recently noticed that more and more restaurants and retail stores are asking customers to complete a survey in exchange for discounts or freebies. They need your feedback, and want to reward you in a small way for your help.</p> <p>Old Navy, for example, will offer a 10% off coupon code when you complete a survey of your store shopping experience. It takes about three minutes to fill out the survey online and you'll be given a coupon code for 10% off your entire purchase the next time you're in the store.</p> <p>Aside from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">saving money on clothes</a>, I've received free burgers, drinks, cash, and other freebies for completing surveys that were printed on store receipts. It really does pay to keep your receipt and spend a few minutes answering the questions.</p> <h2>3. Catching Pricing Errors</h2> <p>We're all busy people, and this includes cashiers, which means it's highly probable that we're going to miss important savings. Whether it's us or the cashier who's in a hurry, a mistake could occur when checking out.</p> <p>I always keep the receipt and thoroughly glance over it before leaving the store. Sometimes an employee will forget to scan a coupon I gave them, or they might ring up an item twice. Other times, it's helpful to verify the price that was scanned versus the price displayed on the shelf.</p> <p>If a company has an item priced for $6, they have to sell it to you for that price, even if it's originally labeled for $20. So be sure to pay attention while checking out, or at the very least, review your receipt before leaving the store.</p> <h2>4. Tax Deductions</h2> <p>As a freelancer myself, it's vital that I keep record of all <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-to-fund-your-business-without-touching-savings">business-related expenses</a> and purchases throughout the year. When you're a business owner, you already have to pay your own Social Security and Medicare tax (since you don't have an employer to help split the difference) which means you'll want to get all the deductions and credits you deserve.</p> <p>Business trips and client meetings over coffee or lunch all count towards tax savings that can be deducted on your tax return at the end of the year. Even job hunting or moving expenses can help decrease your overall tax burden.</p> <h2>5. Rebates and Cash Back</h2> <p>This is likely one of the best reasons to keep a receipt, especially if it's for an electronic or gadget purchase. My husband recently upgraded his gaming computer and was able to get over $85 worth of cash rebates and gift cards because he followed the instructions for the rebate offers.</p> <p>Companies are usually very strict about <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-earn-cashback-rewards-without-extra-spending">rebates and cashback policies</a>, so be sure you're following the directions exactly. Often you'll have to mail in the original receipt, so you'll want to make a copy of it for yourself before sending it out.</p> <p>Without the original receipt, most companies will <em>not </em>honor the rebate offer and you could be missing out on a good chunk of savings.</p> <h2>6. Mobile Apps to Store Receipts</h2> <p>We've established that keeping your receipts is important if you want to save more money, so how can you store them in an organized manner? The best answer is to use mobile apps to help stay organized and keep them for future reference.</p> <h3>Shoeboxed</h3> <p><a href="https://www.shoeboxed.com/">Shoeboxed</a> is a comprehensive mobile app that allows you to input your receipts manually, or take a picture of the receipt digitally. You can then store the information for tracking expenses, mileage or meal reimbursements, and easily export to bookkeeping software for expense reports.</p> <h3>Expensify</h3> <p>If you work in sales or are someone who travels a lot for business, <a href="https://www.expensify.com/">Expensify</a> is exactly what you need. Their SmartScan technology easily reads and scans your receipt, which you can then categorize, tag, and save for future reference. In the event you lose your original receipt, this app then generates and IRS-guaranteed eReceipt that's good for redemption purposes.</p> <h3>OneReceipt</h3> <p>With <a href="https://www.onereceipt.com/">OneReceipt</a> you can save both physical receipts and digital ones made from online purchases that are received in your email inbox. Either take an image of your paper receipt, or forward a digital receipt for categorization and saving using your personal &quot;@onereceipt.com&quot; email address.</p> <p><em>Do you use your receipts to save money? What's another way to maximize your savings by keeping track of receipts?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-smith">Carrie Smith</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-ways-to-save-money-by-tracking-your-receipts">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed">Five Easy Steps to Keeping Track of Expenses for the Self-Employed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/working-on-the-road-a-book-review-for-professional-nomads">Working on the Road: A Book Review for Professional Nomads</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-forget-to-budget-for-these-unexpected-moving-expenses">Don&#039;t Forget to Budget for These Unexpected Moving Expenses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-big-expenses-you-can-easily-get-rid-of">10 Big Expenses You Can Easily Get Rid Of</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sites-and-apps-to-help-you-track-your-spending-and-stick-to-your-budget">10 Sites and Apps to Help You Track Your Spending and Stick to Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Organization documents expenses filing receipts Fri, 19 Jun 2015 11:00:20 +0000 Carrie Smith 1457076 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Things in Your House You're Forgetting to Clean http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-in-your-house-youre-forgetting-to-clean <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-things-in-your-house-youre-forgetting-to-clean" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/kid_toy_under_bed_000022705231.jpg" alt="Child forgetting to clean under the bed in his room" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's a good chance you're rolling your eyes right now. You have a hard enough time keeping your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-cleaning-rules-you-should-be-breaking">house clean</a> as is without me telling you that you're forgetting to clean X-Y-Z. But these easily forgettable areas can be havens for germs and gunk. But the good news is that while all of the following nine areas are easy to forget, they're also easy to clean!</p> <p>So the next time you're cleaning the house, take a few moments to wash, wipe down, or otherwise clean the following.</p> <h2>1. Under the Bed</h2> <p>Maybe it's a latent childhood fear of what lurks under our bed, but most people avoid this space of their house like the plague. Unfortunately, out-of-sight and out-of-mind doesn't mean this space is magically clean. It's a popular spot for dust and dust mites, and since you spend (hopefully) at least eight hours a day lying directly above it, this area deserves your attention. It's as simple as a good vacuum or sweep, and be sure to get the dust that collects around the bed posts.</p> <h2>2. Toothbrush Holder</h2> <p>For something that sits in our bathrooms and holds a brush that we put in our mouths at least twice a day, you'd think we'd clean toothbrush holders more. According to a 2011 study by NSF International, it's one of the germiest spots in the entire house. Keep your toothbrush holder clean with the help of antibacterial mouthwash &mdash; it's not just good for keeping your mouth clean!</p> <h2>3. Pillows</h2> <p>I don't mean to alarm you, but when was the last time you washed your pillows? If you're like many people, it's been a while, and pillows are a great hiding place for dust mites and general sleep filth. Every six months, give your pillows a good hot water wash in the washing machine and dry on low heat. Be sure to check the care instructions, and don't wash foam pillows.</p> <h2>4. Refrigerator</h2> <p>The fridge is something that often gets put on spring cleaning lists, and just moves from one to-do list to the next. It's also a job that always seems worse than it is, and is totally worth doing on a semi-regular basis. If you can keep your fridge tidy, you'll keep away gross germs, rotting food, mold, and generally make your life easier. Even a big fridge overhaul can be done in under 30 minutes, so no excuses! Just be sure to clean the coils in the back from time to time, since dusty build-up will make the appliance work harder, and drives up your energy bill.</p> <h2>5. Doorknobs</h2> <p>It makes sense when you think about it: hands are great carriers of germs, and you open doorknobs with your hands. At the same time, they are often overlooked when it's time to clean. Even though brass and copper doorknobs have natural antibacterial properties, they can still get coated with the oil from your hands, which can trap more bacteria and dirt. Give all of the knobs in your house a regular wipe-down with vinegar, and focus on the doors that get the most use, like the front, back, and bathroom doorknobs.</p> <h2>6. Light Switches</h2> <p>The same dirty hand principle applies to light switches, which are in no way anti-bacterial. They are frequently handled by clean and dirty hands alike, and are a fun place for bacteria to hang out. Every time you clean, give them a wipe with a cloth moistened with vinegar or antibacterial cleaner to keep germs from spreading.</p> <h2>7. House Plants</h2> <p>When plants grow outside, they get rained on and dusted by the wind regularly, keeping them clean. When green things live in your home and only get watered at the base, they tend to get dusty and dirty. In addition to this being unsightly and just kind of gross, it also impedes their ability to absorb sunlight and can encourage pests. Every couple of months or so, give your plants a cleaning, either with a damp sponge or with a full-blown shower. Mist them regularly to keep them perky and tidy. Before cleaning, be sure to consider what kind of plant you're dealing with so that you don't overwork or over-water.</p> <h2>8. Under Rugs</h2> <p>Even though that bit of floor is covered up with a piece of carpeting or rug, that doesn't mean that it's perfectly clean. Dirt and dust often gather at the edges, corners, and just underneath rugs. Keep your rugs and floors in good condition and keep your home clean by pulling up the rug when you clean from time to time. Don't forget to clean your rugs once or twice a year, too!</p> <h2>9. Handheld Electronics</h2> <p>We tend to use electronic devices without regard to how clean our hands are, and with touch screens things get extra grimy (and if you have kids, it's even worse). Keep your devices clean without damaging them by wiping them down with a solution of distilled water and isopropyl alcohol. The alcohol is fast evaporating, so it keeps anything important from getting wet.</p> <p><em>What things in your home do you sometimes forget to clean?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/laurel-randolph">Laurel Randolph</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-in-your-house-youre-forgetting-to-clean">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-throw-out-today">25 Things to Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-wonderful-household-uses-for-essential-oils">13 Wonderful Household Uses for Essential Oils</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-really-easy-ways-to-unclog-drains">10 Really Easy Ways to Unclog Drains</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-mops">The 5 Best Mops</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-in-your-kitchen-that-get-rid-of-bad-smells-naturally">6 Things in Your Kitchen That Get Rid of Bad Smells Naturally</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Organization cleaning dusting germs household washing Mon, 15 Jun 2015 11:00:13 +0000 Laurel Randolph 1456992 at http://www.wisebread.com The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_procrastinating_000037338664.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to cure procrastination" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some people may wonder why procrastination advice seems to never work for them and if there is a deeper issue at hand. Well, for 20% of the population who are chronic procrastinators, it is a serious problem that needs to be addressed, according to Joseph Ferrari, a psychology professor at DePaul University and a leading expert in the study of procrastination. For those 20%, telling them to just &quot;do it&quot; is like &quot;telling a clinically depressed person to cheer up,&quot; says Ferrari, author of the book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Still-Procrastinating-Regrets-Guide-Getting/dp/0470611588/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1329440165&amp;sr=8-1" target="_blank">Still Procrastinating?</a>.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Organization-Tips-DIYs-34385347#photo-34385347">41 Insanely Awesome Organization Hacks</a></p> <h3>It's a Serious Problem If . . .</h3> <p>So how do you know if you're a chronic procrastinator? &quot;You find that you procrastinate at home, at school, at work,&nbsp;in relationships. You don't pay your bills on time . . . You miss sporting events, concerts because you never got the ticket,&quot; says Ferrari. &quot;You're late for any social gathering, you'll miss doctor's appointments because you're never there on time, the refrigerator is empty because you never restock it in time, food goes bad because you never eat it on time. If you do all those kind of things, you probably are a chronic procrastinator.&quot;</p> <p>Read on to find out how people become procrastinators.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Ways-Productive-Morning-34975526">7 Ways to Be Productive Every Morning of the Week</a></p> <h3>How People Become Chronic Procrastinators</h3> <p>There are several factors that can lead one to becoming a chronic procrastinator. Here are a couple of them, according to the procrastination expert:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Your dad</strong>: &quot;It's typically cold, demanding, stern fathers that cause boys and girls to be procrastinators,&quot; Ferrari says. Children with strict dads use procrastination as a way to cope because they can't rebel.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>You care too much about what others think of you</strong>: Some people procrastinate because they care too much about public perception. The pressure to seem perfect is particularly strong for these people. The chronic procrastinators prefer people to see them as procrastinators that don't get around to doing tasks rather than simply being incompetent.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Society</strong>: We live in a world where society doesn't reward punctuality. Instead, we're penalized for being late, which doesn't give any of us incentive to complete tasks ahead of time. &quot;We punish people if they file their taxes late. We give them a bill. If we pay off our credit card late, we charge them a late fee. But what if you pay your card on time and what if you've paid your mortgage off? There's no gift here.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Funny-Sick-Day-Excuses-20337003">10 Really Unusual Sick Day Excuses</a></p> <h3>The Cure for Procrastination</h3> <p>For those who have deep-rooted issues with procrastination, it seems that cognitive behavioral therapy, a type of mental health counseling, is the most effective method. This kind of psychotherapy attempts to reroute inaccurate, harmful, or negative thoughts.</p> <p>Ferrari suggests a couple more ways that might help chronic procrastinators:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Surround yourself with doers</strong>: It's healthy for a chronic procrastinator to surround herself with people who are likely to do things. It'll be a good influence on those with a tendency to delay tasks.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Just start somewhere</strong>: Just take a small step at a time. For example, if you're supposed to write an essay, start with a few paragraphs, and if that's too much for you, resolve to write just one. If that's still overwhelming, stick to a couple of sentences or even a few words.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Set up a reward system</strong>: &quot;People like to do things they enjoy doing,&quot; says Ferrari. He recommends rewarding yourself with something you enjoy after you complete something that you've been dreading to do. For example, reward yourself with half an hour of <em>Desperate Housewives</em> after doing laundry.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Public posting</strong>: Because procrastinators care so much about how others view them, they are more likely to do tasks when they publicly announce it. Take to Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media outlet and state the task you're going to do. Then when you've completed it, let everyone know that you've done what you set out to do. The &quot;likes&quot; and congratulatory tweets will feel very satisfying.</li> </ul> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Make-Mornings-Easier-37111300">Start Each Workday Right by Following These 7 Rules</a></p> <h3>So What if I Am One?</h3> <p>If you're reading this and feel that you fit the profile of a chronic procrastinator, you may think that it's not a big deal to be one. After all, your life might be functioning fine, and you've made it through many of the setbacks caused by your procrastination.</p> <p>However, keep in mind that it may catch up with you one day, and it can get to a point where it disrupts your life and negatively impact other people's opinion of your character. Further, it's not exactly comfortable living as a chronic procrastinator. In fact, Ferrari found that procrastinators have more regrets than nonprocrastinators for things that they didn't do. &quot;Stop stressing yourself over it. Life is short &mdash; leave a legacy,&quot; says Ferrari. &quot;There are too many places to see and too many things to do in life to just procrastinate and wait and living in a bubble of fear of getting it done.&quot;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> What are you waiting for? Fix your chronic procrastination now. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com" style="border:none;"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" style="height:95px; width:300px" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Organization-Tips-DIYs-34385347#photo-34385347">41 Insanely Awesome Organization Hacks</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Ways-Productive-Morning-34975526">7 Ways to Be Productive Every Morning of the Week</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Funny-Sick-Day-Excuses-20337003">10 Really Unusual Sick Day Excuses</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Make-Mornings-Easier-37111300">Start Each Workday Right by Following These 7 Rules</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-addicted-to-the-internet">Are You Addicted to the Internet?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-one-touch-approach-to-managing-household-finances">A One Touch Approach To Managing Household Finances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fifteen-minutes-of">Fifteen Minutes of ...</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-stages-of-procrastination-read-this-right-now">The 7 Stages of Procrastination (Read This Right Now!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-stop-procrastinating-now">9 Ways to Stop Procrastinating — NOW!</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Organization Productivity confidence procrastination productivity Fri, 29 May 2015 21:00:09 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1424334 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Easy Ways to Automate Your Everyday Life http://www.wisebread.com/4-easy-ways-to-automate-your-everyday-life <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-easy-ways-to-automate-your-everyday-life" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_post_its_000045422110.jpg" alt="Woman finding ways to automate her everyday life" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I once had a colleague who ate the exact same lunch every day: an apple, a carton of yogurt, and a handful of crackers.</p> <p>When I asked him if he got bored with the sameness of his daily lunch, he explained that he used to pack sandwiches and leftovers for lunch every day &mdash; and found himself gaining weight. He realized that if he ate the same thing for breakfast and lunch every day, then he could eat whatever he wanted for dinner and maintain his weight without having to think about it.</p> <p>What my colleague had discovered was the importance of automation in achieving goals.</p> <h2>Decision Fatigue</h2> <p>Our brains have a limited amount of bandwidth for <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/poverty-makes-you-stupid">making decisions</a>, leading to a phenomenon known as <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/21/magazine/do-you-suffer-from-decision-fatigue.html?pagewanted=all&amp;_r=1">decision fatigue</a>. When you are forced to make small decision after small decision each day, you have less bandwidth available to make the big choices that will help you achieve your goals. If you are able to free yourself of the small decisions through automation, then you are much better equipped to make the decisions that cannot be automated.</p> <p>If you struggle with productivity, organization, or time management, try one of these surprising automation hacks. You'll be amazed at how much more you can get done.</p> <h2>1. Daily Uniform</h2> <p>Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admits to owning twenty identical gray, scoop-necked t-shirts so that he does not have to think about what to wear each morning. Similarly, Apple's Steve Jobs was famous for his uniform of black turtleneck and jeans. Adhering to these personal uniforms allowed these extremely influential men to focus their attention where it belongs &mdash; on their products.</p> <p>Of course, it can be difficult to wear the same clothes every day without attracting attention. For instance, Zuckerberg has often come under fire for his t-shirt and hoodie style.</p> <p>However, Saatchi &amp; Saatchi Art Director Matilda Kahl recently wrote an essay for Harper's Bazaar explaining how she decided to adopt a <a href="http://www.harpersbazaar.com/culture/features/a10441/why-i-wear-the-same-thing-to-work-everday/">chic personal uniform</a>. While she has experienced some pushback (people have asked if she was part of a religious sect), she has found the uniform to be freeing, particularly when it comes to allowing her to express her creativity at work, where she really needs it.</p> <h2>2. Automated Meals</h2> <p>Wise Bread readers are certainly familiar with the benefits of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-eat-well-on-just-20-a-week-with-meal-plans">meal planning</a> and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-time-and-money-with-a-monthly-assembly-or-bulk-cooking-weekend">once-a-month cooking</a>. But you can become even more automated in terms of meal prep if you take a page from my former coworker's book and create a schedule.</p> <p>For my former colleague, that meant he ate exactly the same meal for breakfast and lunch each and every day. Not only did this mean his weight maintenance was easier, but it saved him time and money at the grocery store each week since he always bought the exact same breakfast and lunch foods.</p> <p>Even if you are unwilling to eat the exact same food every day, you could plan four different weeks' meals and alternate the weeks. That way you'll know you need shopping list #1 during the first week of the month, list #2 the next week, and so on. Rather than spending time creating a list each week, that work is already done for you.</p> <h2>3. Toilet Paper Subscription</h2> <p>Do you ever have to make an emergency run to Target for toilet paper, shampoo, deodorant, dishwasher detergent, dog food, or dryer sheets? These are the regular use items that it's easy to run out of before you remember to buy more. That's why it's a great idea to subscribe for delivery of household items.</p> <p>Amazon's <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/subscribe-and-save/details/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=75TOL35ACH2PP4Y7">Subscribe &amp; Save program</a> allows you to schedule such regular deliveries. Amazon offers you 5% off anything you buy through Subscribe &amp; Save, and a 15% discount if you put at least five items on subscription &mdash; and shipping fees are waived. You are e-mailed a reminder about the shipment a few days before it ships, with an option to cancel, and you are not charged for the items until they ship.</p> <p>Signing up for a subscription means you will no longer make emergency runs to the store or ponder whether you need more paper towels every time you go grocery shopping (hint: whether you decide you've got enough Brawny at home or that you need more, you'll definitely be wrong).</p> <h2>4. Checklists for Daily Life</h2> <p>No matter how many times a pilot has flown a particular airplane, he or she still refers to a checklist in order to make sure each necessary step is taken in the proper order. Atul Gawande of The New Yorker describes the original implementation of the checklist for takeoff this way: &quot;[It] was too complicated to be left to the memory of any pilot, however expert.&quot;</p> <p>Critical-care specialist Peter Provonost has proven that <a href="http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2007/12/10/the-checklist">implementing checklists in hospitals</a> can save lives and reduce medical care costs. In both the flight and medical worlds, checklists prevent expert practitioners from overlooking or skipping a basic step, which is very easy to do when you are focused on something bigger, like taking off in bad weather, or a patient having a seizure.</p> <p>Though skipping basic steps in your daily life likely does not result in life-or-death consequences, you can still streamline and automate your life by using checklists.</p> <p>According to Brett McKay of The Art of Manliness, the best way to implement checklists in your life is to <a href="http://www.artofmanliness.com/2014/12/08/the-power-of-checklists/#disqus_thread">look for the essential items</a> that you regularly overlook and create checklists around them:</p> <p>You don't need a checklist that lists every single step on how to complete a task. That renders a checklist useless. Instead, just focus on putting down the 'stupid' but essential stuff that you frequently miss. Your checklist should have no more than nine items on it. The shorter the better.</p> <p>For instance, if you have trouble remembering to take your medication each day, you could create a morning checklist listing the name of each medication and post it on your bathroom mirror. There's no need to remind yourself to shower beforehand or brush your teeth afterward. Presumably, those activities are already automatic.</p> <h2>Think Less to Be Smarter</h2> <p>It's so easy to get bogged down in the small daily decisions that must be made to maintain your life. There are many days when your brain becomes a hamster wheel of little choices that don't really matter to you. But automating those little decisions can help you to stay focused on the goals you really care about.</p> <p><em>What parts of your life have you automated?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-easy-ways-to-automate-your-everyday-life">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-online-tools-that-help-organize-people">Free Online Tools That Help Organize People</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-not-to-delete-your-emails">5 Reasons Not to Delete Your Emails</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/achieve-more-with-goal-sequencing">Achieve More With Goal Sequencing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-small-new-year-s-resolutions-you-can-start-today">25 Small New Year’s Resolutions You Can Start Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Productivity automating checklists meals planning routine Wed, 20 May 2015 21:00:10 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1423522 at http://www.wisebread.com Food Going Bad Quickly? Here's How to Fix It http://www.wisebread.com/food-going-bad-quickly-heres-how-to-fix-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/food-going-bad-quickly-heres-how-to-fix-it" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_fresh_fruit_000047218614.jpg" alt="Woman holding fresh food that spoils quickly" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Ever remember that you have delicious leftovers or fresh veggies in the fridge, only to discover rolling hills of mold covering their surface? It's the worst and it's time to learn how to prevent rapid <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-i-eat-this-a-quick-guide-to-expiration-dates-and-food-safety">food spoilage</a>. Keeping food fresh for longer saves money &mdash; and it's easy.</p> <h2>1. Store Fresh Produce Correctly</h2> <p>Do you place different types of produce in different areas of the kitchen, or do you shove everything in the crisper drawer? Here's how to store them best.</p> <h3>Greens</h3> <p>These go in your vegetable crisper. Be sure to keep them at the top, never stacking heavy veggies on top of lettuces and baby greens.</p> <h3>Vegetables</h3> <p>Remove rubber bands and twist ties. Be sure to trim leafy ends and wash the veggies. Place in a clean bag with air holes punctured for air flow. Give them a space in the crisper or the bottom shelf of your fridge.</p> <h3>Fruit</h3> <p>Do not store fruit and vegetables together &mdash; a gas called ethylene accumulates, attracting bacteria too quickly. Stone fruits, apples, pears, and melons should all be left to ripen on the countertop. Oranges and all citrus, bell peppers, and most berries should be refrigerated immediately. And because bananas ripen fastest, place them near any other fruit you'd like to ripen faster, such as apples or pears.</p> <h3>Roots</h3> <p>Basic roots like onions, potatoes, beets, and turnips should stay outside in their own basket. Once they have been cut, store them in a Tupperware in the fridge.</p> <h2>2. Store Leftovers Immediately</h2> <p>Do you normally let dinner cool on the stove after eating? That actually allows bacteria to accumulate faster, giving it a head start before entering the colder, less hospitable fridge environment. For best results, store food while it's still piping hot. Build time into dinner prep to immediately pour a portion of leftover food into storage containers and throw into the fridge.</p> <h2>3. Use Natural Preservatives</h2> <p>There's no need to go out and buy antimicrobials and antifungal chemical preservatives unless you are cooking for large groups. For home cooking, here are a few simple ways to keep food from spoiling without resorting to pickling everything:</p> <h3>Brining (or Salting)</h3> <p>Have a whole bird or large cut of meat and worried you might not get to it in time? Freezing is only good if you have the right containers to prevent freezer burn. Try brining your meat by coating it in salt. This pulls water from bacterial cells, killing the bacteria which cannot live without moisture.</p> <h3>Sugaring</h3> <p>Similar to brining, sugaring also pulls moisture from bacterial cells, making food safer to eat for a very long time. This is great for fruits, making delicious snacks out of fruit you may not have had enough time to eat fresh.</p> <h3>Citric Acid</h3> <p>Lemon and lime juice are a godsend for fruits and vegetables that have already been cut and are vulnerable to browning or spoiling. From guacamole to pre-made salads, use plenty of lemon or lime juice that not only adds vitamin C and brightness to your food, but also stalls the spoiling process for a day or two.</p> <h2>4. Sweep the Refrigerator</h2> <p>It's smart to take stock of the fridge once a week and clean it out. Here what to look for.</p> <h3>Other Rotten Food</h3> <p>If there is anything rotting in your fridge, get rid of it immediately. The gases coming from those bacteria flourishing in nearby rotting foods could be spoiling your fresh food by proxy.</p> <h3>Cleaning</h3> <p>For the same reasons as above, random condiment smears, beverage spills, and other grime attracts bacteria and fungus along the surfaces inside your refrigerator. Be sure to clean any food residue from the surfaces regularly.</p> <h3>Temperature</h3> <p>Be sure that your fridge is cold enough to prevent fast bacteria growth, but not so cold that it freezes fresh food (which can ruin most fresh produce by the time you want to eat it).</p> <h2>5. Sterilize the Tupperware Regularly</h2> <p>One of the easiest things you can do is also one of the easiest things to forget: keeping Tupperware clean. If things get really bad, sterilize containers by soaking them in boiling water for at least 10 minutes.</p> <p>Are you still bothering with flimsy plastic containers? It can be difficult to remove mold spores from plastic, so invest in some more durable and less porous glass containers. They are not only easier to clean, but are safer to store food for much longer than their plastic counterparts.</p> <p><em>How do you keep your food fresh for longer?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/food-going-bad-quickly-heres-how-to-fix-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fresh-fruits-and-vegetables-by-the-month">Fresh Fruits and Vegetables, By the Month</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-delicious-ways-to-enjoy-your-summer-veggies">31 Delicious Ways to Enjoy Your Summer Veggies</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-delicious-ways-to-use-leftover-mashed-potatoes">10 Delicious Ways to Use Leftover Mashed Potatoes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-fancy-ways-to-use-leftover-food">8 Fancy Ways to Use Leftover Food</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-night-soup-delicious-soup-from-leftovers">Thursday Night Soup: Delicious Soup From Leftovers</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Organization fridge fruits leftovers mold spoiling veggies Fri, 15 May 2015 11:00:16 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1420493 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Makeup Items You Should Ditch Today http://www.wisebread.com/7-makeup-items-you-should-ditch-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-makeup-items-you-should-ditch-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/makeup_000051522634.jpg" alt="Woman using makeup item that she should ditch today" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's spring, which means it's time to clean out those long neglected drawers full of junk. A great place to start is with your makeup drawer, because chances are you have a few things that need to be tossed.</p> <p>When going through beauty products, be sure to keep shelf life in mind as well as the impact on the environment and your health. For these reasons, the following seven products are an easy toss.</p> <h2>1. Old Mascara</h2> <p>If you've got tubes of mascara rolling around in your drawer that are more than four months old, toss them. Mascara is the cosmetic with the shortest shelf life, and chances are you've got one that is past its prime. Because it is used so close to the eye, it's a breeding ground for bacteria. You increase your chances of an eye infection or conjunctivitis by using old mascara, so switch it out with a new bottle every three to six months. The same rule applies to liquid eye liner.</p> <h2>2. Toxic Nail Polish</h2> <p>Take a look at your nail polish bottles and consider if they need to go. Are they several years old? Has the color separated? Is the texture lumpy? Toss them out. Then do a little research about the bottles you have left. Do they contain the &quot;toxic trio&quot; of chemicals? The trio includes formaldehyde, a known carcinogen, and DBP and toluene, two reproductive toxins. These chemicals have been banned in several other countries, but not in the U.S. A backlash led to many brands going toxic-free, but a recent study shows that a number of brands still <a href="http://www.dtsc.ca.gov/PollutionPrevention/upload/NailSalon_Final.pdf">contain the harmful chemicals</a>. Make sure the polish in your drawer is, in fact, free of these three toxins.</p> <h2>3. Anti-Aging Products</h2> <p>Many anti-aging skincare products boast alpha and beta hydroxy acids as key ingredients, and praise their ability to give a refreshed look to your skin. Unfortunately, these acids may be doing more harm than good. Products with these ingredients increase the skin's sensitivity to UV rays, contributing to skin damage and making us more <a href="http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/2006/07/01/alpha-hydroxy-acids-ahas-beta-hydroxy-acids-bhas-and-skin-cancer/">susceptible to skin cancer</a>. Alpha and beta hydroxy acids are now present in over 10% of moisturizers and, oddly enough, 6% of sunscreens. Check your products for these ingredients, and wear sun protection daily to reduce sun damage and keep your skin youthful.</p> <h2>4. Used Sponges</h2> <p>If you use sponges to apply foundation, concealer, or other products, then throw out used sponges at least once a week. If your sponges are of high quality, you can wash them weekly, but don't hold on to them for more than a few months. Anything that comes into contact with your skin on a regular basis is bound to grow bacteria, and could cause skin problems when used repeatedly.</p> <h2>5. Eyeshadow With Aluminum Powder</h2> <p>Eyeshadows and some pencils that are highly pigmented can contain aluminum powder, which the Environmental Working Group (EWG) has deemed a <a href="http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ingredient/700324/ALUMINUM_POWDER/">hazardous substance</a>. The FDA has restricted its use, but only in lip products. Concerns linger over skin absorption and neurotoxicity, so better safe than sorry. Check the ingredients of your eye makeup and toss those that contain aluminum powder.</p> <h2>6. Face and Body Scrubs</h2> <p>Scrubs are a refreshing way to polish away dead skin and keep your face and body soft and smooth. But before you scrub up, check the ingredients. <a href="http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/microbeads-cosmetics-gyres-plastics-pollution-makeup">Plastic microbeads</a> used in many scrubs are known to be terrible for the environment. Microbeads end up in lakes and oceans, and marine life cannot distinguish between the tiny plastic beads and food. Fish end up ingesting the plastics, along with any toxic chemicals they have absorbed. Many major companies have promised to stop using the beads, but warn that it will take several years to phase them out. Check your scrubs for plastic microbeads, and when purchasing opt for scrubs that use all-natural exfoliants.</p> <h2>7. Lipsticks With Lead</h2> <p>There has been a long, heated debate about whether <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/28/fashion/28skin.html?adxnnl=1&amp;adxnnlx=1427744262-qzfMoVamFHO75BqxsPsr3w&amp;_r=0">lead in lipstick</a> poses a threat to the wearer's health. The FDA has long claimed that the amounts are so small that they are perfectly safe to wear on a regular basis. Other groups have raised concerns over repeat exposure and its compounding effect. This issue is still being studied and discussed, but in the meantime, there are many <a href="http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/beauty/makeup/tips/g1886/lead-free-lipsticks-470402/">lead-free lipsticks</a> on the market. If your lipstick contains lead, you may want to consider trashing it, especially if you kiss your kids with that mouth.</p> <p><em>Do you have any of these iffy makeup products in your cosmetics drawer?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/laurel-randolph">Laurel Randolph</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-makeup-items-you-should-ditch-today">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-beauty-products-ive-learned-to-live-without">Five Beauty Products I&#039;ve Learned To Live Without</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-great-brand-name-beauty-buys-under-20">10 Great Brand Name Beauty Buys Under $20</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-makeup-hacks-from-the-pros">12 Makeup Hacks From the Pros</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-great-brand-name-beauty-buys-under-10">15 Great Brand Name Beauty Buys Under $10</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-generic-beauty-buys-better-than-the-expensive-originals">7 Generic Beauty Buys Better Than the Expensive Originals</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Organization beauty products chemicals cosmetics harmful ingredients makeup Tue, 14 Apr 2015 13:01:18 +0000 Laurel Randolph 1380849 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Closet Bedrooms That Are Surprisingly Spacious http://www.wisebread.com/8-closet-bedrooms-that-are-surprisingly-spacious <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-closet-bedrooms-that-are-surprisingly-spacious" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_morning_000020877401.jpg" alt="Woman waking up in surprisingly spacious closet bedroom" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you're looking for more guest accommodations in your home or have recently added a new addition to the family, extra bedrooms can be hard to find. And when you live in a studio apartment, any added inches you can carve out for general living are absolutely golden.</p> <p>But you're in luck, because I've scoured the web to find the coolest DIY closet bedrooms to open up your cramped lifestyle.</p> <h2>1. Walk-In Retreat</h2> <p>This 420 square foot apartment got a major upgrade when its renter converted her <a href="http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/ellens-walkin-closet-bedroom-my-bedroom-retreat-contest-186379">walk-in closet to a bedroom</a>. The sleep space is practical but luxurious, fitting a double bed with ease. The double doors to the &quot;room&quot; create a sense of openness but can still be closed to hide clutter in a pinch.</p> <h2>2. Studio Cove</h2> <p>This studio in San Francisco has a secret. Much like with the space above, this <a href="http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/northwest-9-shannons-sumptuous-47783">walk-in closet</a> can easily accommodate a double bed. To give it even more separation from the living areas, I'd recommend using a tension rod with some curtains that could be opened or closed whenever company is over.</p> <h2>3. Captain's Bed</h2> <p>Not only is this <a href="http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/look-5-21336">closet bedroom</a> cute, but it's also packing some great storage to boot. If you have the headroom, try elevating your bed onto an IKEA LACK shelf, which costs around $130. It gives the appearance of a built-in bed all while giving you room to stow books, clothes, and other items.</p> <h2>4. Kid Cave</h2> <p>Not all apartments are blessed with huge closets, however. I first discovered micro bedrooms when I stumbled upon Huck's spirited <a href="https://instagram.com/p/nZC40GSPQ2/">kid cave</a> on Pinterest. Though the family has since moved to a larger apartment in Brooklyn, in Manhattan he slept on a simple floor mattress with some shelves and hooks to hold all his adorable stuff.</p> <h2>5. Neat Nursery</h2> <p>For babies, closets can provide ample space for sleeping. Check out this <a href="http://www.loftsboston.com/gallery/Court_Square_Press_322/Court_Square_Press_322-17.jpg">room for two cribs</a> (yes, two!). The existing shelving and bars in the area gives the parents lots of options for hanging clothes, storing diapers, and stashing other baby supplies. I like the addition of the dresser that can double as a changing station.</p> <h2>6. Single Crib</h2> <p>Of course, you don't need a gigantic closet to fit a singleton. And if you have a bedroom that's just a bit too small to be called a proper nursery, try <a href="http://lovelymorning.com/index.php/2010/11/jillians-nursery/">removing the closet doors</a> and placing the crib in the negative space. The rest of the room can fit way more stuff with the crib out of the way, and the baby may even sleep a bit better surrounded by all the coziness.</p> <h2>7. Bunk Bed</h2> <p>Whether for overnight guests or squeezing siblings together, these <a href="http://thefykes.blogspot.ca/2008/08/one-house-outside-tennessee.html">bunk beds</a> are where it's at. They fit perfectly into the upstairs closet of this Tennessee home &mdash; complete with a ladder for climbing and even some shelf storage. The folding doors hide this spot away during the day, and I could see French doors working just as well with a bit more style.</p> <h2>8. Closet Loft</h2> <p>Even if your child has a bed and plenty of room to grow, converting the closet can be a smooth move. This playful <a href="http://www.hometalk.com/7439798/diy-closet-loft">closet loft</a> provides a soft reading area and storage for clothing and other items. It'd be the perfect place for friends to sleep over for years to come. Oh, and did I mention it only cost $75 from start to finish?</p> <p><em>Would you ever sleep in a closet bedroom? We'd love to hear your thoughts on this unique use of space in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-closet-bedrooms-that-are-surprisingly-spacious">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-throw-out-today">25 Things to Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-closet-you-can-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Closet You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage">12 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Garage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pack-up-your-house-tips-for-saving-money-and-sanity-on-a-move">Pack Up Your House: Tips for Saving Money (and Sanity) on a Move</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-kitchen-you-should-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Kitchen You Should Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Organization apartments bedrooms smart sleeping space saving studios Mon, 13 Apr 2015 13:00:06 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1380779 at http://www.wisebread.com 27 Things You Should Have in Your Utility Drawer http://www.wisebread.com/27-things-you-should-have-in-your-utility-drawer <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/27-things-you-should-have-in-your-utility-drawer" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/measuring_tape_000050146530.jpg" alt="Woman with measuring tape kept in utility drawer" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You know the kitchen drawer &mdash; the one with an interesting assortment of odds and ends? Well at some point, the &quot;utility drawer&quot; often turns into the &quot;junk drawer.&quot; And if yours is bordering on being more of a scrapbook, maybe this is the time to clean it out and stock it with some really practical items.</p> <p>The well-stocked drawer is going to contain some very tiny items, as well as some rather unwieldy ones, so start by investing in <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002RL9CYK/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002RL9CYK&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=I3EON6AAYU72JPZR">divider trays</a>. Next, begin collecting tiny tins (think empty Altoids containers) for some of the smaller items below. If you own a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005TJMC0S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B005TJMC0S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=4NN7YQK74AYL3G7D">label printer</a>, you can really make your drawer look spiffy &mdash; but masking tape and a marking pen will work, too. &quot;Found items&quot; like clean, empty tuna cans, old muffin tins, or even ice-cube trays are helpful for sorting the goods.</p> <p>Then it's time to stock up on the following.</p> <h2>1. Flashlight</h2> <p>Probably one of the most important items in your utility drawer, and it needn't be bulky. For Christmas, my husband just got me one of these powerful, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BA5BM8I/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00BA5BM8I&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=64AQH52KYQW4HR62">tiny LED flashlights</a>. It takes up very little room, but boy, does it throw a big light.</p> <h2>2. Batteries</h2> <p>I keep an assortment of all sizes in the drawer, since you never know what you'll need.</p> <h2>3. Barbeque Lighter</h2> <p>These <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000UONR4M/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000UONR4M&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YTLJ6GVOBLNKQ3AG">long lighters</a> aren't only for the barbeque. I use mine to light my gas stove, candles, or the outdoor fireplace. When the power goes out, this is one of the first things I grab.</p> <h2>4. Tape Measure</h2> <p>I like both the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004SILEXM/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B004SILEXM&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=FEUV2C7LLP2CSQOL">retractable tape measures</a> and the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005KMMOK2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B005KMMOK2&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XRTJ5BQDLVO73YSR">flexible tape measures</a> that you use for sewing. I also have the freebie paper tape from Ikea, which is really handy.</p> <h2>5. Band-Aids</h2> <p>Keeping Band-Aids in the kitchen makes more sense than the bathroom, to me. There I'll be, slicing away, and oops! So having an assortment of Band-Aids right there in the utility drawer is pretty handy.</p> <h2>6. Safety Pins</h2> <p>Wardrobe malfunction right before work? Grab a safety pin. Buy a box of pins in assorted sizes.</p> <h2>7. Sewing Kit</h2> <p>Lose a button, or is a hem coming out? I love this <a href="http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/real-simple-sewing-kit/1017916297?mcid=PS_googlepla_nonbrand__&amp;adpos=1o3&amp;creative=39230263429&amp;device=c&amp;matchtype=&amp;network=g&amp;gclid=CjwKEAjw0LmoBRDHuo7UkaKXhn8SJADmDTG0XYJnNNX9v5cW5-Fl3evxasugzs8YsIVmTttkmaYl3BoCkvfw_wcB">zippered sewing kit</a> that keeps everything in one place.</p> <h2>8. Eyeglass Repair Kit</h2> <p>Do you, or does a family member, wear glasses? If so, this little <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000RB7B72/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000RB7B72&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YL2HEAKRYOHRVWM2">eyeglass repair kit</a> will be a lifesaver. We even bring our kit on vacations.</p> <h2>9. String or Twine</h2> <p>I like this food-safe <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000ST1EW6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000ST1EW6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ET4HFGYQUYGCVCQM">cooking twine</a>. Tie a plumb-bob to the string end and get a straight edge for hanging wallpaper. String is one of those things you don't know you need until you need it.</p> <h2>10. Mini-Hammer</h2> <p>I could not live without my mini-hammer. It cracks nuts, pounds tough meat, and hangs pictures. They are nice for little hands when kids want to &quot;help daddy,&quot; too.</p> <h2>11. Pliers</h2> <p>Ideally, your toolbox will contain a larger assortment, but a small pair of pliers are great to have in the drawer for emergencies.</p> <h2>12. Duct Tape</h2> <p>My favorite use is to get rid of pet hair, but here are 10 other <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-great-ways-to-use-duct-tape">great uses for duct tape</a>.</p> <h2>13. Deck of Cards</h2> <p>I recently learned to play Texas Hold 'Em, which turned out to be a lot of fun and a great way to kill time. Of course, I had a deck of cards handy in that utility drawer. If the power goes out, light a votive candle and deal 'em, pardner.</p> <h2>14. Matches</h2> <p>I like to keep two types in the drawer: book matches and stick matches. If you live somewhere humid, the book matches can fail you. Store in a plastic bag.</p> <h2>15. Screwdriver</h2> <p>This is another &quot;must-have.&quot; I like this <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002I3TDP0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002I3TDP0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=OF6O2VVEYQESS7EZ">ratcheting screwdriver</a> that has the multiple bits.</p> <h2>16. Utility Knife</h2> <p>Also known as an &quot;X-acto knife&quot; or a &quot;boxcutter,&quot; these are hugely practical. Keeping one in the utility drawer ensures I won't be tempted to use one of my good kitchen knives when a box is delivered.</p> <h2>17. Votive Candles</h2> <p>I'm not a big &quot;candles-as-atmosphere&quot; person, but when the power is out, votives are the greatest. Not only are they inexpensive, but you can also buy unscented ones. I also own some of the &quot;flameless&quot; candles, but they don't have a long life &mdash; so for disaster preparedness, I like real candles.</p> <h2>18. Take-Out Menus</h2> <p>Pizza, anyone? Chinese? Whatever your preference, if you keep your take-out menus in your utility drawer, you are ready to make a phone call. We keep ours in a manila folder so they stay tidy.</p> <h2>19. Tweezers</h2> <p>Sliver? Bones in fish? Thorn in the dog's paw? A pair of tweezers is a great addition to any utility drawer.</p> <h2>20. Nail File</h2> <p>The cheap emery boards will work, but a friend got me hooked on these <a href="http://www.sephora.com/crystal-nail-file-P310307">crystal nail files</a>, which perform so much better. They come in a case, which also makes them much easier to find.</p> <h2>22. Rubber Bands</h2> <p>Keeping rubber bands in your junk drawer makes good sense. How many times have I used only half a bag of frozen peas? Grab a rubber band out of the drawer, seal them up, and send them back into the freezer. Keep them in a Ziploc bag so that they stay tidy and out of the humidity, and they will last longer.</p> <h2>23. Pens and Pencils</h2> <p>Absolutely indispensable and inexpensive. You'll need both in the drawer.</p> <h2>24. Thumb Tacks</h2> <p>I am a big fan of bulletin boards, so naturally I keep thumb tacks around. I prefer push pins, which are easier to dig back out of the cork.</p> <h2>25. Tape</h2> <p>Let's face it &mdash; the drawer is not complete without tape. Stock up.</p> <h2>26. Chip Clips</h2> <p>Keep those chips, crackers, and bags of cereals crispy with clips. I really like binder clips the best, since they clamp more tightly than some of the &quot;clothespin&quot; types. They also take up less room.</p> <h2>27. Glue</h2> <p>I like two types in the drawer &mdash; Super Glue and Elmer's. Both get regular use.</p> <p>Still not inspired to whip that drawer into shape? Then take a fun look at people whose <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/theprotojournalist/2014/08/15/337759135/what-your-junk-drawer-reveals-about-you">utility drawers</a> well, failed. And then get to organizing!</p> <p><em>Is there anything I've forgotten? What's in your jun</em>&hellip;<em> err, </em><em>utility </em><em>drawer?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/27-things-you-should-have-in-your-utility-drawer">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">A Denim Expert Reveals Why You Only Need 3 Pairs of Jeans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-little-things-you-can-fix-right-now">101 Little Things You Can Fix Right Now!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage">12 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Garage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-the-sandcastle-20-great-ways-to-use-a-beach-bucket">Beyond the Sandcastle: 20 Great Ways to Use a Beach Bucket</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/an-organized-year-a-month-by-month-guide">An Organized Year: A Month-by-Month Guide</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Organization junk drawers repairs tools utility drawers Thu, 02 Apr 2015 13:00:10 +0000 Marla Walters 1361032 at http://www.wisebread.com 20 Genius Storage Ideas for Your Bathroom http://www.wisebread.com/20-genius-storage-ideas-for-your-bathroom <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/20-genius-storage-ideas-for-your-bathroom" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/bathroom_000031013188.jpg" alt="Mother and daughter using genius storage ideas for bathroom" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you don't have a whole lot of storage space in your bathroom, finding places to stash all your stuff can be a challenge (especially if you're a product junkie like I am). Luckily there are tons of creative ways to increase the organization potential of your bathroom. Get inspired by one of these genius bathroom organizing ideas. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-genius-kitchen-storage-solutions?ref=seealso">15 Genius Kitchen Storage Ideas</a>)</p> <h2>1. A Hanging Shoe Organizer</h2> <p>Make use of the space behind your bathroom door by hanging up a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000HM5V0A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000HM5V0A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=Y3MHEPOLTVWHR52Q">shoe organizer</a>&nbsp;with clear pockets.&nbsp;If you have lots of little bottles and tubes, this is the perfect way to organize them (By color! By type!) while being able to see all of the contents. I can only dream of owning enough tubes of lip gloss and makeup to fill one of these.</p> <h2>2. Stacking Bins</h2> <p>My under-the-sink area is notorious for getting stuffed with random bags of toilet paper, shampoo, cleaning products, and bubble bath. After a while, it gets so messy I don't even know what I have under there anymore! So I <em>should</em> be using stacking crates or bins are to take advantage of the vertical space. These <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EDZSDWA/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00EDZSDWA&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=RVSZPX34DQF6BN6L">stacking bins</a> are perfect, but a little pricey. See if you can find the same thing or similar at local discount stores. (I frequent my local Daiso, a Japanese dollar store, for all my plastic organizational needs.) In a pinch, office organization bins can work.</p> <h2>3. Cabinet Shelving</h2> <p>If you're a little handy, you can build a few little shelves under the sink to better use your space. Or if you're not up to DIY, a couple of plastic shelves (again, check your local discount store) or an inexpensive <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004BDP656/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B004BDP656&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=7TCLFXHX4KSY2PBX">shoe rack</a> might do the trick.</p> <h2>4. Turntables for Hard-to-Reach Spaces</h2> <p>I'm a big fan of lazy Susans (also known as <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0036OQWT0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0036OQWT0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=WHYTCIXLW46EEEQP">cabinet turntables</a>) to help you reach those hard-to-reach areas easily.</p> <h2>5. Wall Shelves</h2> <p>Add wall shelving wherever there is dead space, like over the toilet. It's a great place to store baskets full of useful items, like floss and washcloths. If you do store things over the toilet though, it's a good idea to get into the habit of keeping your toilet cover closed, not only so things don't fall in, but to minimize contamination.</p> <h2>6. Furniture</h2> <p>If you have the space, you might even be able to move in a small cabinet or bookshelf for extra storage. If a piece of furniture is too big, try a small kitchen storage cart like the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;fst=as%3Aoff&amp;keywords=ikea%20raskog&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;qid=1428007941&amp;rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Aikea%20raskog%2Cp_89%3AIkea&amp;rnid=2528832011&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=F6IO5JAIIY3NPE3R">IKEA Raskog</a>.</p> <h2>7. An Extra Towel Bar</h2> <p>Instead of fighting my husband for use of the towel bar next to the shower, we decided to hang an extra towel bar above the old one. Now each of us has our own rack for a less messy bathroom (and bonus, towels that dry!). An extra towel bar can also be used to hang baskets, curling irons, and other sundries.</p> <h2>8. A Vintage Ladder</h2> <p>Another creative idea I've seen is to use a vintage wooden ladder leaning up against the bathroom wall as a towel bar (if you have the space). With each rung holding a towel, you'll have plenty of towel storage.</p> <h2>9. Dishes</h2> <p>Storage items don't have to be made for the bathroom to be used for bathroom storage. I picked up a vintage yellow ceramic creamer and sugar bowl set at an antique store. They are perfect for storing cotton swabs and cotton pads in the bathroom. They look great too! Don't be afraid to use pretty dishes for storing small items. A crystal bowl can hold nail polishes, hand lotions, or lip balms. A tiered dessert server can double as a jewelry display.</p> <h2>10. Old Containers</h2> <p>Old candle holders (after you've <a href="http://www.auntpeaches.com/2012/09/how-to-remove-candle-wax-from-glass.html">removed the wax</a>) can be used to hold toothbrushes and makeup brushes. Empty product jars (especially for fancier creams) can be repurposed to hold cotton balls, makeup removal pads, or even to decant larger items into. For example, put some of your favorite body lotion into a pretty jar, and store the rest of the giant bottle out of sight. Do the same with the enormous bottle of mouthwash.</p> <h2>11. Trays</h2> <p>A bathroom looks untidy with a toothbrush, toothpaste, contact cases, and other sundries littering the countertop. Keep these daily use items together on a tray or in a water-resistant basket. I use this <a href="http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/10239647/">IKEA candle dish</a> as the perfect waterproof way to store daily use items. The countertop looks less cluttered, but I'm not stuck with trying to store oft-used items out of sight.</p> <h2>12. Hanging Rails</h2> <p>If you're lacking counter space, a great way to optimize storage is to hang things from the walls. Hang a rail storage system, like the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BMZKNGI/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00BMZKNGI&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=3ZANH5XZNFNH5DJI">IKEA Fintorp</a> series, and stash your stuff in the various hooks, cups, and holders that hang from the rail.</p> <h2>13. Spice Racks</h2> <p>Similarly, an inexpensive <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00PNKZ0GQ/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00PNKZ0GQ&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=TJQJXB7NXOQUEWL3">spice rack</a>, already meant to store small bottles, can be creatively repurposed to hold toiletries.</p> <h2>14. Drawer Dividers</h2> <p>A bathroom drawer can quickly become a bottomless pit of junk without a bit of organization. Divide up the space using creative solutions such as repurposed cardboard boxes, silverware holders, bowls, office supply containers, and baskets.</p> <h2>15. PVC Pipe &quot;Holsters&quot;</h2> <p>I thought this was an ingenious way to store curling irons &mdash; attach short lengths of 2&quot;-3&quot; PVC pipe to the door of your sink vanity, creating <a href="http://www.familyhandyman.com/bathroom/diy-bathroom-storage/view-all#step5">tubular&nbsp;holsters</a>&nbsp;for the irons and their cords.</p> <h2>16. Hanging Baskets or Crates</h2> <p>Instead of bothering with hanging shelves, go straight to hanging baskets or wooden crates on the walls to hold towels and toilet paper rolls. You can make a little bookcase by stacking a few wooden crates on top of each other and anchoring them to the wall with the open side facing out.</p> <h2>17. A Wine Bottle Rack</h2> <p>Use a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MFKRZIS/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00MFKRZIS&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BYYCCRJCOZA4KRHI">wall wine rack</a> to store rolled up hand and bath towels if you don't have much towel storage in your home.</p> <h2>18. The Backs of Cabinet Doors</h2> <p>Use the space behind your cabinet doors by hanging small plastic baskets or utensil containers behind each door to store small things like nail polish, nail clippers, and other little things that get lost easily.</p> <h2>19. The Sides of Your Vanity</h2> <p>Attaching a basket to the side of your vanity cabinet can make use of an under-utilized space. This <a href="http://www.listotic.com/50-brilliant-storage-ideas/20/">metal mesh basket</a> (actually a file holder) hung on the side of the cabinet is the perfect place to store hair dryers and irons.</p> <h2>20. Hanging Storage From the Ceiling</h2> <p>Hanging tiered fruit baskets attached to the ceiling creates useful storage space without using up valuable real estate on the floor or walls.</p> <p><em>Even the smallest bathroom can be optimized for storage space with a little ingenuity. What creative solutions have you found to organize your bathroom?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-genius-storage-ideas-for-your-bathroom">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage">12 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Garage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-downsize-and-declutter">How to Downsize and Declutter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-kids-room">11 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Kid&#039;s Room</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-you-maximize-fridge-and-freezer-space">Here&#039;s How You Maximize Fridge and Freezer Space</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-super-cool-ways-to-add-hidden-storage-to-your-home">10 Super-Cool Ways to Add Hidden Storage to Your Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Organization bathroom storage Tue, 03 Mar 2015 12:00:10 +0000 Camilla Cheung 1316675 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Kinds of Emails to Purge From Your Inbox http://www.wisebread.com/5-kinds-of-emails-to-purge-from-your-inbox <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-kinds-of-emails-to-purge-from-your-inbox" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_emails_000038233654.jpg" alt="Woman deciding which emails to purge from her inbox" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all have that email account &mdash; it's swimming in loose, unmanageable messages we can't seem to delete. It's our primary account. How did it get this bad? By not deleting these five kinds of emails.</p> <h2>1. Old Work Emails</h2> <p>You stopped working there two years ago but still let the entire history of communication rot in your email account, because who knows &mdash; maybe you'll need a coworker's contact info, need to access a file, or need to reference something. Here's the question: Have you so far? If not, consider adding all those old coworkers' addresses to your email contacts list and delete those emails! Here's how to <a href="https://support.google.com/mail/answer/8933?hl=en">add contacts in Gmail</a>.</p> <h2>2. Newsletters You've Read (or Never Read)</h2> <p>You signed up for a lot of newsletters that seemed informative at the time, everything from your favorite retail outlets, to blogs, to clubs or associations you're a part of, to your bank's and gym's regular notifications. Once you've scanned or read them, delete! If you haven't read the sender's newsletters in more than a month, unsubscribe using a tool like&nbsp;<a href="https://unroll.me/">Unroll.me</a>. All the better to see the more important messages waiting in your inbox every morning.</p> <h2>3. Social Media Notifications</h2> <p>You opted in for email notifications on Facebook and other networks a long time ago, back in the oughts, when we expected to receive email notifications about everything. Now you have a smartphone that pings you everytime something new happens. All you have to do is check the app or go to the site (as if you don't already do that every 30 seconds) to stay abreast. So why do you still spam yourself with email notifications? Only because you are too lazy to delete them. Here's how to <a href="https://www.facebook.com/help/327994277286267/">get rid of Facebook emails</a>.</p> <h2>4. Blind Solicitations</h2> <p>You scroll past emails from someone you don't know very well, because they're asking for something. Do you plan to reply to them in the next two days? If not, let it go. The recruiter who emailed you about a job you don't want, the sales person following up on your purchase, the not-even-an-acquaintance who asked you to donate to their Kickstarter &mdash; they all knew it was unlikely they would hear from you, anyway. Stop feeling bad about not replying to them and delete those emails!</p> <h2>5. Sentimental Emails</h2> <p>You keep those special emails from your significant other, your parents or grandparents, your closest friends in a special folder. It's meaningful to hold onto those messages, but you don't open that folder very often. Well, you can still do that by <a href="http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2013/12/download-copy-of-your-gmail-and-google.html">downloading those sentimental exchanges</a> to your hard drive, Dropbox, or other cloud storage. Anything not pertinent to your everyday communication needs is email clutter. Save those precious emails somewhere more permanent, where they'll be kept safe.</p> <p><em>How do you keep your inbox tidy and uncluttered? Drop us a line in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-kinds-of-emails-to-purge-from-your-inbox">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-modern-life-skills-everyone-should-master">15 Modern Life Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-closet-you-can-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Closet You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-easy-ways-to-automate-your-everyday-life">4 Easy Ways to Automate Your Everyday Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-a-day-to-defeat-clutter-forever">Do This One Thing a Day to Defeat Clutter Forever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Productivity clutter digital clutter email Mon, 02 Mar 2015 18:00:11 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1315185 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Things in Your Basement You Should Throw Out Today http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-in-your-basement-you-should-throw-out-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-things-in-your-basement-you-should-throw-out-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000050424184_Large.jpg" alt="socked feet christmas decorations" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I hate to admit it, but I'm a basement hoarder.</p> <p>My subterranean lair is the slightly moldy home to any and every item that I cannot decide what to do with. If it weren't for the fact that our washer and dryer reside in the basement, there probably wouldn't even be room to walk down there. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-kitchen-you-should-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Kitchen You Should Throw Out Today</a>)</p> <p>But for every item that actually should be stored in my basement, there are at least two others that are just taking up space. It's high time to clean house&hellip; literally! So if you're like me, here are 10 common basement items that you no longer need to hold onto (and the best way of getting rid of them).</p> <h2>1. Computer, Electronic, and Appliance Boxes</h2> <p>It's one of those completely irrational urges: to carefully preserve all of the packaging for any new electronic equipment you purchase. This might have made sense when you bought a desktop computer back in college and expected to move every nine months, but now it's just silly. Break down and recycle all those boxes. You can always get another box if you have to move. Recycling what you have will immediately clear up space in your basement and give you a sense of decluttering accomplishment.</p> <h2>2. Old Electronics</h2> <p>Speaking of technology of yore, how many of you have a VCR or a monitor the size of a sofa hanging out in your basement somewhere? (I actually still have a TV/VCR combo from my college days.) Often, we hang onto these items because we have no idea how to get rid of them. Enter <a href="http://www.earth911.com/">Earth911.com</a>. This website allows you to search for local recycling centers for everything from batteries to electronics.</p> <h2>3. Cables, Wires, and Chargers</h2> <p>Every device you buy comes with a new cable, wire, or charger. Take the time to go through your collection, match up the ones you actually need with the devices you use, and donate the rest to Goodwill or recycle them at <a href="http://www.bestbuy.com/site/global-promotions/recycling-electronics/pcmcat149900050025.c?id=pcmcat149900050025">Best Buy</a>.</p> <h2>4. Owner's Manuals</h2> <p>One of the perks of living in the age of the Internet is the fact that you can recycle all of those manuals you have been carefully saving. You can Google the problem you need to troubleshoot faster than you could find the necessary owner's manual in the pile, anyway.</p> <h2>5. Hazardous Materials</h2> <p>Basements tend to collect everything from half-empty cans of paint, to expired motor oil, to jugs of antifreeze, to expired batteries. Just like your old electronics, you may have held onto these because you don't know how to safely get rid of them. Earth911.com can help you determine where to take these items without harming yourself or the environment.</p> <h2>6. Unused Small Appliances</h2> <p>I'd wager you have a bread machine kicking around somewhere in your basement. Or maybe your mother-in-law gave everyone a crockpot one year for Christmas and yours has never seen the light of day. Nearly every basement has some sort of kitchen appliance that's been used once or twice and then stored. Drop off those George Foreman grills and Williams-Sonoma panini presses at your local Goodwill or Salvation Army. You'll never miss them.</p> <h2>7. Exercise Equipment</h2> <p>When is the last time you used that home elliptical machine for anything other than drying sweaters? Or the skis you bought before you broke your leg in Aspen? If you have pieces of exercise equipment gathering dust in your basement, it's time to clear them out. No, you won't use them and you won't get your money's worth out of them. Believing that you will is just the&nbsp;<a href="http://moneyning.com/money-beliefs/how-loss-aversion-in-behavioral-economics-explains-your-irrational-money-choices/">loss aversion</a>&nbsp;talking, and you'll feel much better to let go of those false beliefs (and the accompanying guilt).</p> <p>When it comes to sports equipment, the options run the gamut from donating them to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army to selling them on Craigslist. It's also a great idea to check with your local YMCA, Boys &amp; Girls Clubs of America, or Special Olympics chapter to see if you can do even more good with your unused equipment. (Not to mention the tax write-off.)</p> <h2>8. Broken or Unused Christmas Decorations</h2> <p>It seems like most basements in America have at least one strand of non-working Christmas lights stored somewhere. You can send your lights to <a href="http://www.holidayleds.com">HolidayLeds</a> for recycling year-round, and receive a coupon good for 15% off LED Christmas lights on the site.</p> <p>If you have an artificial tree even Charlie Brown wouldn't put presents under, check your local drop-off recycling center (or Earth911.com) to find out if you can recycle it.</p> <p>For Christmas ornaments and bulbs that have seen better days, donate them or trash them. Don't assume that you'll make that lovely Pinterest mosaic from the broken pieces.</p> <h2>9. Baby Items</h2> <p>If you're not sure you are done having children, it can be tough to get rid of old baby items. But some baby gear expires (like car seats, for instance), and baby clothes, jumpers, strollers, and the like are generally going to be the worse for wear after spending years in your basement. Donate the usable items.</p> <p>As for those car seats, there are specific guidelines for disposing of them.</p> <p>Car seats generally expire within six years of purchase because the foam padding degrades over time. If your car seat is newer than six years old and has never been in an accident, you may be able to give it to another family, although you will likely have to pass it along to someone you know personally. Most parents are (understandably) leery of accepting a used car seat from a stranger.</p> <p>If you cannot donate your seat, you may be able to recycle it. There are <a href="http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news/2013/10/what-to-do-with-a-used-car-seat/index.htm">recycling centers in 11 states</a> that will accept used and expired car seats for recycling. Otherwise, you can dismantle the seat, remove the straps, and recycle the plastic and metal portions of the seat while trashing the rest. As a last resort, you can dispose of the seat in the trash, provided you have removed or cut the straps so the seat cannot be used again.</p> <h2>10. Games With Missing Pieces</h2> <p>Just because you <em>could</em> play Monopoly with a handwritten B&amp;O Railroad card doesn't mean you want to. It's time to just get rid of any games with missing pieces. It's likely that you will have to just trash/recycle these misfit toys, but it's always a good idea to post such games on <a href="https://www.freecycle.org/">Freecycle</a> to see if a local artist-type could use some random game pieces.</p> <p><em>What items are you still keeping in your basement that you have not gotten around to throwing out? What items do you plan to keep forever in your basement, no matter how much it will confuse future archeologists (and your current significant other)?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-in-your-basement-you-should-throw-out-today">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-kitchen-you-should-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Kitchen You Should Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-only-5-words-you-need-to-declutter-your-life">The Only 5 Words You Need to Declutter Your Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-you-wont-ever-use-again-and-should-throw-out-today">12 Things You Won&#039;t Ever Use Again and Should Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-in-your-office-you-can-throw-out-today">12 Things in Your Office You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-declutter-and-keep-your-stuff-too">This Is How You Declutter and Keep Your Stuff, Too</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization basement clutter declutter hoarding Mon, 23 Feb 2015 12:00:08 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1302027 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Smart Storage Solutions for Your TV Room http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000020530150_Large.jpg" alt="man woman tv couch" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Need a media room makeover? I certainly do. There's a lot of stuff that goes into entertainment, even for those of us who like to keep life more minimal. So check out these amazingly easy ways to get your space organized in a flash so you can enjoy more movies, tunes, and fun. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-rid-of-your-old-electronics?ref=seealso">How to Get Rid of Your Old Electronics</a>)</p> <h2>1. Fake Built-Ins</h2> <p>You don't need carpentry skills to enjoy the look and function of built-ins. This <a href="http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2011/03/built-in-beauty.html">organization blogger</a> collected five <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00PIXVT9A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00PIXVT9A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YK5YA3KVGEN6MHEZ">Ikea Billy bookcases</a> and assembled them together using wood and moulding for a finishing touch. She then painted them and accented the faces with patterned wallpaper. So much storage!</p> <h2>2. Stacked Shelving</h2> <p>If you have lots of media items, like CDs, DVDs, and games, consider stacking them high with a system of simple shelving. A floor-to-ceiling installation can be both practical and eye-catching. You can find basic shelving at your local hardware store along with all the brackets you need to fasten it to the wall. If you cannot find the studs, use screws with anchors for staying power.</p> <h2>3. Disc Jockey</h2> <p>I used to work in libraries, so I'm all about this streamlined approach to disc storage. Take all your CDs and DVDs out of their plastic boxes and slip them into <a href="http://www.hisugarplumsblog.com/2013/09/organized-mountain-of-dvds-cds.html">slim paper sleeves</a>. Arrange in a cute bin alphabetically by creating clearly marked dividers.</p> <h2>4. Cord Wrangler</h2> <p>I don't know about you, but we have a gazillion cords laying on the ground in our entertainment room. Get them in line by using <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=cable%20organizer&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=L7XDK7D5S5KNNFYQ">cable organizers</a> installed on the back of your TV stand. Though <a href="http://www.ikeahackers.net/2012/12/ocd-friendly-expedit-tv-bench.html">this project</a> is specific to the Ikea Expedit and Signum organizers, the same concept applies to any other piece of furniture your television lives on. Attach to the back and get your cords in line.</p> <h2>5. Thing Organizer</h2> <p>There are lots of, well, things that go along with TVs, DVD players, game stations, streaming devices, sound systems, and more. Tame all the extras &mdash; cords, chargers, etc. &mdash; in file or media boxes. You'll <a href="http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2012/03/you-asked-organizing-cords.html">cut out cardboard dividers</a> to create nooks to place all your stuff inside. Don't forget to wrap the cords using ties to keep them from getting tangled.</p> <h2>6. DIY Ottoman</h2> <p>For small rooms, a DIY ottoman is&nbsp;genius. I'd love to make one to store my child's toys or even my workout equipment (weights, bands, rollers, etc.) for all those exercise DVDs I do at home. All you need is a galvanized metal tub to start. Then you'll cut out a circular top out of wood and upholster with foam and fabric. You can choose to add swivel casters or not. The finished ottoman can double as a coffee table or seating in a pinch.</p> <h2>7. Hidden Storage</h2> <p>Not everything we store in our entertainment rooms is beautiful or display-worthy. Try hiding extra cords, remote controls, and other equipment with a couple <a href="http://www.bhg.com/rooms/living-room/room-arranging/multipurpose-living-room/#page=7">tension rods and short curtains</a>. Finding the exact size you need at the store might be difficult, so try making your own curtains out of fabric and iron-on hemming tape. Just cut to size, fold over edges, and leave room for the rod before heating.</p> <h2>8. Speaker Solution</h2> <p>Clunky speakers cramping your style? My husband and I are continually arguing about the best way to have surround sound without all the bulk and eyesores. A great idea is to slip them under a skirted table. That way, he gets his subwoofer and I get my tidy room.</p> <h2>9. Record Station</h2> <p>We have an impressive collection of vinyl that needs a place to live. This <a href="http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2011/09/diy-industrial-record-cabinet.html">DIY record cabinet</a> looks easy to assemble and has distinct industrial flair. Beyond that specific project, I like the general idea of using old crates &mdash; metal or wooden &mdash; as storage for records. If you can find several sturdy crates, you could stack them atop one another for a quick record shelf wherever you need one.</p> <h2>10. Television Cabinet</h2> <p>Pottery Barn has some amazing cabinets that hang over your television to hide it away in style. The problem is that they cost over $450 to purchase, depending on your TV size. Try making your own cabinet using <a href="http://www.soyouthinkyourecrafty.com/wall-mounted-tv-case-tutorial/">frames and a pallet</a>. You'll construct a box on the wall before mounting your TV and putting the frames on hinges to open and close.</p> <p><em>How do you keep your media room tidy?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-storage-solutions-for-your-tv-room">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mr-cheap-stuff-who-do-you-think-you-are">Mr. Cheap Stuff: Who do you think you are?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-why-you-should-get-a-3d-printer">8 Reasons Why You Should Get a 3D Printer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/miracle-device-coin-rolls-all-your-credit-cards-into-one">Miracle Device Coin Rolls All Your Credit Cards Into One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-ways-to-count-and-cash-in-your-change">Best Ways to Count (and Cash in) Your Change</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-throw-out-today">25 Things to Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization entertainment gadgets media technology Thu, 19 Feb 2015 12:00:07 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1299968 at http://www.wisebread.com Do This One Thing to Defeat Disorganization Forever http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retro-businessman-messy-office-desk-Dollarphotoclub_72115873.jpg" alt="businessman messy desk" title="businessman messy desk" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some people are just born to be organized.</p> <p>Labeling and categorizing comes naturally. Itineraries and schedules are seen as welcomed tools. These are the people that can easily lay their hands on a shopping receipt, the water bill, or the warranty on the refrigerator at a moment's notice.</p> <p>I admire these people. I even envy them at times. But I am <em>not</em> one of them&hellip; not even close.</p> <p>It's not that I don't appreciate the benefits of a good system&hellip; I do. But my brain just doesn't work that way. As counter-productive as it might be, I am innately disorganized to my core. And I have been that way for as long as I can remember.</p> <p>Which is why I knew I had to write this post.</p> <p>See, it's easy for an organized person to tell you how to bring order into your life. Throw stuff away, they counsel. And do one thing at a time.</p> <p>But for those of you &mdash; like me &mdash; who have trouble with those concepts, this kind of advice simply won't work. I do throw things away for instance, but one look at my closet or my garage and you'll know it's not nearly enough. And I'd love to focus on just one thing at a time, if only my mind (and my attention span) would cooperate.</p> <p>So, if you and I have this in common, if you too struggle with inherent disorganization in a relatively organized world, then this post is for you.</p> <p>Do this one thing, and defeat your disorganization for good.</p> <h2>Build Your Own System</h2> <p>I spent years trying to work within the commonly accepted model. File important papers alphabetically for example, and if you haven't used something in a year, toss it out. A place for everything and everything in its place.</p> <p>But those rules simply didn't work for me and the more I tried to adhere to that kind of structure, the more overwhelmed I began to feel.</p> <p>I have spiral notebooks full of story ideas that are older than a year, but toss them out? I think not. I also have the megaphone from my cheerleading days &mdash; decades old, I might add &mdash; and certainly not anything I'll be using anytime soon. Does it have &quot;a place?&quot; No. It's bulky and dented and dusty and it doesn't really &quot;fit&quot; anywhere. Is it something I really need to keep? You betcha.</p> <p>Filing things alphabetically isn't a &quot;bad&quot; idea <em>per se</em>, but let's be honest. Asking me to set up (and follow through with) said filing system is like asking me to stash my socks in those cute, individual cubbies they make for dresser drawers. It's a nice thought, but it's probably not going to happen.</p> <p>So, I've created a system that works for me instead, and you can too.</p> <p>Here's how you do it.</p> <h2>Find Your Flow</h2> <p>We all have a preferred way of doing things and finding yours is the key to building your system. So, look around and see what makes sense to you.</p> <p>What items do you most need to find on a regular basis? What items are you most likely to misplace? Do you frequently write down phone numbers or passwords or other important information on envelopes or scraps of paper?</p> <p>I do, and then would have to spend hours trying to find the right &quot;scrap&quot; when I needed that information again. To remedy that, I keep a steno pad handy at all times to record those little tidbits of data. It's not a &quot;pretty&quot; way to organize that information, but I haven't had to hunt down an old sticky note in ages.</p> <h2>Find Your Place(s)</h2> <p>And all those spirals containing my writing? They're in a box that sits underneath my desk. I know where it is, it's easily accessible, and I can take from it or add to it whenever I need. I do the same with receipts I want to keep and all our various warranties go straight into a drawer in the kitchen the moment they enter our house.</p> <p>Warranties also share space with our chargers, but it's a deep drawer so it works fine and again, both of these item now have a &quot;place&quot; that I can work with, even if it's not the most logical arrangement.</p> <p>My socks also make it to a drawer, but that's about as much as I can promise. Sometimes, they're matched, sometimes they're not, but they're all in the same place and that's good enough for me.</p> <p>The point is to create a system that works the way you work and addresses the areas you struggle with the most.</p> <p>Remember, the whole point of being organized is ultimately to make life easier. You want to find things when you need them, without having to launch an all-day search and rescue. And contrary to popular opinion, there's more than one way to achieve that goal.</p> <p>Building your own system allows you to create your own version of &quot;order,&quot; even if that version still looks chaotic to your more traditionally organized counterparts.</p> <h2>What About Clutter?</h2> <p>Will this get rid of all the clutter?</p> <p>It depends on how deep your clutter runs. The reason that disorganized people find themselves surrounded by clutter is that we haven't yet decided what to do with all that stuff.</p> <p>I have tons of craft supplies for instance, and at some point in my life, I've had specific plans for each and every one. If I can comfortably say that I'm no longer interested in doing a particular project, it's easy to get rid of the supplies in question.</p> <p>But that's not always the case.</p> <p>So, I compromised. I keep the supplies not being used in a plastic tub in the back of my closet. The supplies I use frequently are kept in a smaller tub that slides underneath my bed.</p> <p>Is it a perfect solution? It's perfect for me!</p> <p>Building your own system may not permanently clear out all the clutter, but it at least organizes the &quot;stuff&quot; together, so that you can focus on how to store it. And that makes it easier to find the things you use without weeding through the things you don't.</p> <p>So. Does this mean I won't have to throw things away?</p> <p>You'll still eventually have to &quot;spring clean&quot; and clear things out, especially when you need to make space for the new &quot;stuff&quot; you need to store.</p> <p>You can however, use this model to give yourself more time to come to that decision by making your potential junk less of a nuisance while you assess your options and remember, there's more than one way to &quot;get rid&quot; of something.</p> <p>Maybe you can find a way to upcycle the item into something you'll actually use. Maybe a friend or relative will mention they're looking for that very thing, allowing you to say, &quot;Hey, I just happen to have one you can use!&quot;</p> <p>You can also donate the items, sell them on eBay or Craigslist, host a garage sale, or in some instances, wrap them up and give them as gifts (use common sense with that last one). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-a-day-to-defeat-clutter-forever?ref=seealso">Do This One Thing to Defeat Clutter Forever</a>)</p> <h2>What About Non-Stuff Clutter?</h2> <p>That sounds great, but what about organizing the non-tangible aspects of my life?</p> <p>So, you're starting to see your physical environment take a more organized shape, but still you're struggling with things like appointments, reminders, bills, and due dates?</p> <p>The same basic approach still applies.</p> <p>I don't work well with day planners for example, but I do love lists and as luck would have it, my cell phone has a simple notes app that keeps those lists forever at my fingertips.</p> <p>I have a running grocery list that gets updated any time I notice we're out of something, a list of clothing sizes (should I want to shop for the family), and another list for thoughts and ideas that that come to me when I'm out and about and my spirals aren't within reach.</p> <p>Birthdays, anniversaries, appointments, bill dates, and trash days are easily managed with the generic reminder app, but if you want something fancier, there are plenty of ready-made apps to help keep you on track as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-productivity-apps-for-really-busy-people-like-you?ref=seealso">The 10 Best Productivity Apps for Really Busy People Like You</a>)</p> <p>The key to success here is to write it down (or type it in) when you think of it. Don't assume you'll remember later, because you won't.</p> <h2>Where to Start?</h2> <p>Okay, but one last question&hellip; where do I start?</p> <p>My organized friends would tell you to pick an area, be it a room or one of those non-tangible aspects, organize it and then move to the next area. Focus on one thing at a time.</p> <p>And that's not bad advice. It just may not be the best advice for you.</p> <p>My recommendation is to pick the areas that need your attention the most. After all, restoring order to your kitchen cabinets might give you a sense of accomplishment, but it will be short-lived if your electricity is turned off because you forgot to pay the bill.</p> <p>So, start with your most immediate concerns, then work your way out from there. And don't be afraid to think outside the box because chances are, that's where you'll find the best solutions to defeating your disorganization for good.</p> <p><em>Have you defeated disorganization? What worked for you?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kate-luther">Kate Luther</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-14"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-home-office">10 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Home Office</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-in-your-office-you-can-throw-out-today">12 Things in Your Office You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-easy-ways-to-automate-your-everyday-life">4 Easy Ways to Automate Your Everyday Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-a-day-to-defeat-clutter-forever">Do This One Thing a Day to Defeat Clutter Forever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization clutter planning productivity Wed, 11 Feb 2015 10:31:14 +0000 Kate Luther 1285778 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Garage http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000041840182_Large.jpg" alt="woman garage bike" title="woman garage bike" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>One of my favorite features of my new home is an oversized double attached garage. I'm in storage heaven in there, but I know I could be using the space better to accommodate all my different needs. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-genius-kitchen-storage-solutions?ref=seealso">15 Genius Kitchen Storage Ideas</a>)</p> <p>Below you'll find a number of ideas &mdash; from broad to specific &mdash; that will help you use your garage space better. Feel free to share your own solutions in the comments.</p> <h2>1. Pipe Rack</h2> <p>A few small pieces of PVC pipe can go a long way toward making <a href="http://www.ashbeedesign.com/2012/05/organizing-tools-with-pvc.html">smart tool storage</a> that will hold up for years to come. The author of this project cut angled pieces of PVC from scraps she had around the house. You can also head to the hardware store and ask an associate to make six inch cuts for you. Then mount and label.</p> <h2>2. Gutter Genius</h2> <p>I've seen a lot of <a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZwPjpdMjZqk/Uh_yk82mm-I/AAAAAAAAHSs/ym1-DXbl8Cg/s1600/garage+p.jpg">gutter shelf projects</a> for the home, but what's more perfect than making storage shelves for your garage? Go to your hardware store and pick out gutters and end caps in whatever size makes sense for your purpose. Then hang them and fill with paint, caulk, sprays, seeds, whatever.</p> <h2>3. Container Corral</h2> <p>Our attic is full of blown-in insulation, so we don't use it for storage. Instead, we have several rows of basic shelving where we've arranged our plastic containers up and off the ground. For better organization, <a href="http://www.abowlfulloflemons.net/2014/10/garage-organization-part-1.html">label your bins</a> in big, bold letters. I suggest using clear tubs for the most transparency.</p> <h2>4. Mudroom Magic</h2> <p>If you're low on closet space indoors, turn your garage into a <a href="http://www.abowlfulloflemons.net/2014/11/how-to-create-a-garage-mudroom.html">beautiful mudroom</a> with just a few tricks. You'll want some hooks for coats and other apparel. A few hanging baskets to keep umbrellas, bags, and mail in check. The rest is up to you!</p> <h2>5. Peg Rails</h2> <p>This <a href="http://www.marthastewart.com/273114/peg-rail-organizer?xsc=eml_org_2011_03_12">peg-rail organizer</a> is as functional as it is beautiful. You'll hang wooden beams along your wall and then drill holes for your pegs. If you don't have tools or time to do this project yourself, consider buying several long hook or <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=peg%20rail&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=Y7H3CNH2JLZXBUYT">peg rails</a> and arranging them in a couple long rows for the same impact.</p> <h2>6. Toy Tamer</h2> <p>There are a lot of different ways you can approach toy cleanup in your garage. I love these <a href="http://orgjunkie.com/2013/05/organizing-concepts-for-kids-garage-toys-free-printable.html">educational ideas</a> that put some responsibility in your child's hands. For example, tall laundry baskets for sport balls; stackable shelving for bubbles, helmets, and pool toys; and brightly taped off areas for bikes and scooters. The key is keeping everything clearly labeled and encouraging your kids to put their stuff away.</p> <h2>7. Hook Hideaway</h2> <p>The minute we moved in, my husband went out and bought a set of inexpensive <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;field-keywords=gladiator%20hooks&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;url=search-alias%3Daps&amp;linkId=VD6DFRTRB7YIBQWX">Gladiator Hooks</a> at the hardware store. There are a number of different ways you can use them, but he arranged them on the studs to get bikes, skis, sleds, folding chairs, and other outdoor items off the floor.</p> <h2>8. Pegboard Pal</h2> <p>One of the best things you can get for your garage (or basement) is a pegboard. After you figure out how high you want to hang your board, you'll make the spot and then drill into the studs using wood screws. Don't forget to level! Then buy some hooks and go crazy.</p> <h2>9. Screw Central</h2> <p>Our garage also serves as our tool storage area. We had inherited an old tool bench at our last house where the original owner had <a href="http://www.chezlarsson.com/myblog/2009/02/screw-organizing.html">organized his screws</a> by placing them in small jars. The cool part? All the tops of the jars were glued (or screwed) to the bottom of a shelf for easy keeping. It's a simple project with big impact.</p> <h2>10. Bungee Corner</h2> <p>Stash all your soccer balls, basket balls, and kick balls in one space <a href="http://100things2do.blogspot.ca/2013/08/organization-ball-storage.html">using bungee cords</a>. The cost of this project was a mere $2. You'll need a wooden frame for the top and bottom of your zone. Then four or five bungee cords stretched between the posts will hold things tightly together.</p> <h2>11. Shoe Win</h2> <p>Those <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001F51AHG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B001F51AHG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=P4Y2XDFB63JTZIIU">plastic shoe organizers</a> work in almost every room, and the garage is no exception. Use it to hold spray paint, golf balls, tools, cleaners, and anything else you have in chaos. You don't even need to hang it over a door. Just nail or screw hooks into the wall or use rope to tie it onto a shelving system.</p> <h2>12. Bike Shelf</h2> <p>I love this simple <a href="http://daily.sightline.org/?attachment_id=21734">DIY bike shelf</a>. Cut notches in a fruit crate to accommodate the top tube of your bike. Mount on your wall. You can use the top shelf to store your helmet or any other gear. (And though this storage device would work great in your garage, it would also be perfect for apartment storage!)</p> <p><em>What's your favorite genius garage storage idea?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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