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Tuesday, February 20, A Great Morning Starts The Night Before, 2.0 Edition (not just for little kids!)
Did you know?  February is National Time Management Month!  I was planning to share a previous post, an article about how “A great morning starts the night before!” but I realized that I wrote that previous post almost 7 years ago, which seems almost like another life now! So, read on for the updated version!  Choose the article for families and small children, or the new version A Great Morning Starts the Night Before, 2.0 Edition (Not Just For Kids.more…)

Tuesday, February 13: What Do I Do With All These Magazine Articles?
Happy Valentine’s Day a day early!  And I missed you all last week!  A couple of technical glitches in the last 10 days knocked down my website and blog, and then my email.  I’m still having trouble with one of my email addresses, so if you contacted me in the last few weeks and wondered why in the world I didn’t respond – please forgive me!  And when in doubt, text / FB message / call me!  This experience reminded me of three lessons: Being organized allows you to be flexible; A simple process is always best; and Making phone calls is a terrible time drain!

A participant in a recent Get A Grip On Your Papers! class asked “What Do I Do With All The Magazine Articles?!”, and I promised her I would answer her question in an upcoming blog. Read on for the answer in “What Do I Do With All Those Magazine Articles?…more”.


Tuesday, January 30:  Change The Habit or Change The  House?
Can you believe it? February is almost here!  Now is the time, friends.  You know, THAT time.  To… take down the rest of the holiday decorations.  Just saying…

Working with a client this morning, I was reminded  of an article I recently read on  In the comments for an article about creating an entry way in a small space, a reader asked if the solution to the problem was to “Change the habit or the house?”.  I am not suggesting you change houses, as in, Move!  I am suggesting that if a space isn’t working, we can look at the space and also at our habits to determine what we can change to make it better!  Read on for more, “Change The Habit or Change the House… (more)?


Tuesday, January 23: 4 Tips for Organized Bill Paying for National Financial Wellness Month
Hello Everyone!  January is National Financial Wellness Month.  A great place to start your path to Financial Wellness is with organized and consistent Bill Paying!  Check out “4 Tips to Organize Your Bill Paying for National Financial Wellness Month…(more)”.

Monday, January 15:  9 Things Every Closet Needs! Tips for National Clean Out Your Closet Month
Hello Everyone!  Another Monday newsletter?  Yep, you betcha!  Are you at home today, either because of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday or the snow?
If so, this could be a great opportunity to show your closet some love for National Clean Out Your Closet Month!  Read on to find out your closet REALLY needs in “9 Things Every Closet Needs! Tips for National Clean Out Your Closet Month”.

Monday, January 8: Create Productive Work-From-Home Space: National Clean Off Your Desk Day
Hello Everyone!  Happy Monday!  My Tuesday newsletter is coming at you bright and early this Monday morning, to take advantage of National Clean Off Your Desk Day, annually the second Monday of January.  What a great way to start the year – With An Organized Work Space!
A recent conversation with a new college graduate sparked this week’s article topic, read on to learn how to “Create Productive Work-From-Home Space: National Clean Off Your Desk Day(more…) “.

Tuesday, January 2, Got Resolutions? Perhaps We Just Need to Get Back to Normal!
Hello Everyone!  Happy New Year! It’s a new day, week, year.  Every moment is an opportunity to make positive change.
But so often, we make progress and change so very complicated!  Positive change can be as easy as getting back to the good and healthy habits we already know how to create and keep!  Read on for “Got Resolutions? Perhaps We Just Need To Get Back To Normal… (more)”.



Tuesday, December 26:  What Does Your Week Hold? Here’s an Article For That!
…What else does this week hold for you?  I’m leaving the choice up to you!   Take your pick, which idea resonates with you today?

Tuesday, December 19: 300 Words About Gift Wrapping, Then We all Have Things To Do
Today and this week are for Advent (waiting) and Action (Taking Care of Business).
I had the pleasure of helping a client with her gift wrapping last week (I have the coolest job ever!). As we got ready, we set up a table in her office, then laid out bags, tags, ribbons and wrapping paper, plus found the scissors, tape and a pen. She stood back and said “Planning ahead like this would have never occurred to me!”.  And that’s why I am here to help!  For more ideas, read on for “300 Words About Gift Wrapping, Then We All Have Things To Do”(more,,,)  

Tuesday, December 12: Stay Productive When All The World Is a Distraction!
168 hours. There are 168 hours in a week.  I mentioned this to a client this morning, and we agreed – that sounds like a lot of time, but also not very much at all!
I caught myself thinking other contradictory thoughts today, as well…   my professional to-do list and an end of year project plan at the same time I decided I should get Christmas preparations squared away this week so I could just sit back and enjoy the season a bit.  Oh, and doing these big projects with this week’s already full calendar and usual every day client work / volunteering / ministries / holiday band concerts / cookingcleaningliving, etc.
We can’t spend the same hours doing three different things. These busy days require focus and a plan!  If you too are struggling with holiday and other thoughts and ideas, read on to find out How to “Stay Productive When All The World Is A Distraction”…more….


Tuesday, December 5:   Even Santa Knows, Lists Can Be Naughty or Nice
The Power of The List has come up a lot recently.  With my accountability partner last Wednesday.  With my client last Thursday.  With another client in the midst of packing for a cross-country move just today.
Lists can be great, or they can just be some words on a page.  Read on to find out how to turn your list into a useful and powerful Action Plan in “Even Santa Knows, Lists Can Be Naughty or Nice(more…)”.


Tuesday, November 28: Creating a Landing and Launch Pad Where There Isn’t One
     Last week, a friend asked me to offer suggestions for her back door / landing and launch pad. So many of us use side doors, back doors or garage doors to enter our home, and there isn’t always great storage at those alternate doors!  Read on to learn more, Creating a Landing and Launch Pad Where There Isn’t One.
Did You Know? I am a member of the Institute for Challenging Disorganization, or ICD.  The ICD serves many purposes,  including educating Professional Organizers like me!  In 2017, I have:

  • Re-certified for my CPO with continuing education units from ICD;
  • earned my Level I Certificate of Study in Chronic Disorganization;
  • earned Level I Certificate of Study in Basic ADD Issues with the CD Client; and
  • started working on my next certification.  There is always more to learn(more…)


Wednesday, November 22: Right Now, What is The Right Thing To Do? (a.k.a., Don’t Aggravate Your Loved Ones On Thanksgiving!)

Happy Thanksgiving!  I wish you all a happy and healthy week spent with the people you love!  What’s your favorite part of Thanksgiving?  Food, friends, family, frivolity?
      With friend-and-family time in conjunction with a special and complicated meal, there are many opportunities to drive our loved ones crazy / be driven crazy by our loved ones.  So here are a couple of tips to manage YOU (and others) better this week, Read on for “Right Now, What’s The Right Thing To Do? (a.k.a., Don’t Aggravate Your Loved Ones On Thanksgiving)…More.”
Tuesday, November 14, National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day!  A couple of weeks ago, a friend / client asked me how to organize her new refrigerator.  I love getting texts like that! I love being the person that people think of when they have an organizing question!
And I promised that I would write about refrigerator organizing.  So – how serendipitous! – this Wednesday is National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day, just in time for Thanksgiving next week! I cleaned out a fridge just the other day – it’s a very satisfying project!  Read on for the HOW-TO in Mystery Meats and Burnt-Out Light Bulbs (National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day!)
Did You Know? This is  a great time of year to donate items and $$ to your local food pantry.  Make it a family project, encouraging your kids to be thankful and share with those less fortunate in our own communities.  Maple Morgan Park Food Pantry and the Village Pantry Food Coalition in Evergreen Park are two great places to start(…more)…



Wednesday, November 8:  Save Time and $$: Stop Running Errands (Over and over and over…)
Ok, friends – today is the day.  Take down the Halloween decor, if it’s not down already.  Tuck it away  – ALL THE WAY away, and enjoy some clutter free surfaces for a little while!
Some days, I feel that I live in my car.  Dropping off the boys at school and activities, driving to see clients, road trips to see family, running errands – you name it! I’ve been paring down my Errand Running lately, in search of more quality time to do other things!  Read on for more ideas to reduce your errands from me and some awesome Readers in “Save Time and $$: Stop Running Errands (Over and over and over…)more) “

Tuesday, October 31: “What If… Your Halloween Decor is Scary, But Not In a Good Way? “
Happy Halloween! I’m writing this newsletter as the trick-or-treaters come to my door!  Weather is fine, which means lots of happy kids and not a lot of leftover candy…  probably a good thing!
I’ve been busy with all the door-answering, so I decided to share a blog article from this week last year that is still good advice!  Read on to learn the answer to “What If Your Halloween Decor is Scary, But Not In A Good Way?…”

     It’s time!  I wanted to share some of my favorite upgrades from our summer Kitchen Remodel Project!  It’s officially DONE!, and it looks great.
Even without a remodel, there are simple changes you can make in your kitchen to improve your experiences, so we’re starting there.  Read of for 5 “Kitchen Upgrades Without a Remodel!… (More…)”
Wednesday, October 18:  49.2 Degrees at 5 AM.  I Believe It’s Fall! 
        Fall is in the air.   It was 49.2 degrees this morning. The forecast calls for a high of 70, but let me tell you, it was very dark and chilly at 5 am.
        In response, all day I have been mulling over my “It’s really Fall now” list of things to do, to clear clutter and stay organized.  Perhaps you have that list, too?  Perhaps you are looking for some suggestions? Read on for some suggestions in “49.2 Degrees at 5 am.  I believe it’s Fall!… (more)” 

Tuesday, October 10:  Winter Is Coming. So Are Allergies, Colds and the Flu. Sorry.
        If you read this week’s title, and thought “‘Winter is Coming’? How could Colleen be such a downer?”, you may be right.  If you happen to love hot weather, “Winter is Coming” may sound gloom-and-doomy.
        However, if you’re more like me, you LOVE Fall and Winter, cooler temperatures and snuggling up with a warm sweater and a good book.  So for me, “Winter is Coming” is actually a relief.  But the negative comes with the good, so regardless of how you feel about cooler weather, NOW is the time to get your supplements and medicine cabinet in order, to prevent illness and be ready to treat it if it arrives!  Click here to find out how!
Did You Know?  Saturday, October 28 is National Take Back Day.  Click here for events in your area to “Take Back” expired or unneeded prescription medications.  Many local police departments have permanent take-back locations, too, so check community resources (more…)  


Tuesday, October 3: “If You Call It a Junk Drawer, Guess What Ends Up Inside?”
Be kind to and with one another this week, graphic-heart.giffriends. We may not be able to control the world around us, but we can control how we interact with the world around us.
This week, I wanted to share one of my favorite posts ever, from this week last year!  We all have one of those drawers, right?  The hodgepdoge of all sorts for stuff?  Maybe you have more than one?!  Read on for how to tackle the dreaded junk drawer with “If You Call It A Junk Drawer, Guess What Ends Up Inside?”
I taught a Clear the Clutter class last night, and promised the participants resources on how to determine if our Stuff is actually worth something.  Check it out…(more):


Tuesday, September 26: Garage!  Take Care Of Your Car, Not Your Clutter!
This week, let’s think about one of the hardest working areas in your home, the GARAGE!  A little time spent out there this week can reap big benefits when the weather turns colder (and it will, despite the heat wave we have been having!).  Read on for ideas in “Garage! Take Care of Your Car, Not Your Clutter!… More…”

Wednesday, September 20, Sharing The Idea “20 Minutes, 20 Dollars”
Hello everyone! I had the privilege of speaking to a wonderful group in Merillville, IN last night about downsizing. We covered a lot in our 60 minutes together: clearing clutter, determining the value of our stuff, how long to keep certain types of papers.  One idea that I shared with the group was the idea of “20 Minutes or 20 Dollars” … (read on for more) 

Wednesday, September 13, If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes
     A participant in today’s time management class finished this statement for me today, “If Nothing Changes, … ‘Nothing Changes'”.  He said – “that’s the definition of insanity, too! Doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result”.
If we want change – if we want life to be different – we have to do things differently. This quote has been rolling around my head all day.  For myself and others.  I can desire change, and plan for it, but I have to make some changes if I want things to change (read on more more…)

Tuesday, September 6, 2017 Refresh and Restart for September
Hope you enjoyed your Labor Day weekend!
There are a lot of “Re’s” on my To-Do lately. Words like Re-order, Re-new, Re-certify, Re-send. “Re-set goals for the third quarter”, “Re-do social media calendar for September” and “Re-pot herb garden”.
Having to “Re”do something can feel frustrating, or it can be liberating.  And to me, September is liberating.  Whether you or your kids are heading back to school or not, this change of season offers opportunities to Refresh, Restart and Recommit to good and great things.  Read on for some suggestions in Refresh and Restart for September(…more)  


Tuesday, August 29:  First Step Of Shopping?  Check your Inventory.
A thought occurred to me very soon after I posted last week’s blog article,  “Can We Go Buy School Supplies?”  It’s the obvious first step of shopping, although a little too obvious for me, as I forget to mention it. Read on for more, “First Step of Shopping? Check Your Inventory… (More).

My daily quote today (love it!): “Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action.”  -Walter Anderson


Tuesday, August 22, “Can We Go Buy School Supplies?”
Hello everyone!  We are crafting our new normal for the school year around here.  The season  of form completion / check writing / school shopping (a.k.a. August) is passing, thank goodness!
I’ve been giving a lot of thought to my New Normal, as our schedules change and I re-commit to the last third of 2017, personally and professionally. 
And yet, in the midst of this big picture thinking… we forgot mechanical pencils? Ugh.  Well, “We” did not, my students (sons) did. Still, If that is our biggest crisis this morning, I think we’re ahead of the game. If you’re shopping this week, for supplies or anything else, check out these 10 tips to make the trip better, “Can We Go Buy School Supplies?… (more)” .


Wednesday, August 16: How Do You Get Out The Door on Time?
Walking home with friends after the big back-to-school drop off yesterday, I was reminded of this article I wrote at this Back-To-School time of year.  This question came up again recently, so here is the answer to “How Do You Get Out The Door On Time?”, great for everyone and not just those heading back to school!
As a follow up to the Real Simple article I shared last week – a client reached out to me to share that she had swapped out her complicated pants hangers for clip hangers – and I had done the same thing with my pants! If you missed the article, check it out!


Wednesday, August 9: Closet Check: Yes? No? Not Today? or Not Gonna Happen?
The Tuesday newsletter became the Wednesday newsletter this week because sometimes there are birthdays / anniversaries / weddings / musicals all rolled into one weekend, and then the tasks of everyday life like work and meetings and dentist appointments… and ice cream.  It is summer, after all!  It’s nice to be the boss…
We’re in Back To School mode here, with registration, clothes shopping, school supplies, etc.  And part of BTS for us is the annual closet review.  Here are three tips to make this go more smoothly, like asking Yes? No? Not Today or Not Gonna Happen (more…)?


Hello everyone!  sunflower-2.jpg August!  A new day, a new month and new opportunities to get organized!  This time of year, my thoughts turn to Back To School, and Back To Business!  And time management tips help for both!  I first crafted this week’s article 5 years ago as a 10 minute Presentation, and I found myself sharing it again almost verbatim with a client last week. Read on for tips to help you Never Be Late Again(more…)!   

Tuesday, July 25: No, The First Step of Organizing is Not “Go Shopping”
At last night’s Clear the Clutter presentation, we discussed how “Very often when we get the urge to organize, we start first with the urge to go and get more stuff!  ‘I need better containers! New hangers!  Different bookshelves!  Cool new coat hooks, boxes, office supplies…’    well, the list goes on and on.  Lots of people go out and buy more stuff before they start actually organizing.” Click here to read on, “No, The First Step of Organizing is Not ‘Go Shopping…(more) ‘”! 

Hello everyone!
     We can find inspiration in the most interesting places!  A conversation with a client this morning inspired today’s blog article about a common challenge many face: too many socks.
     Maybe you didn’t know other people shared this problem. Trust me, they do. This, and others, too. Unfortunately, we imagine  there is something wrong with us because we’ve never heard of anyone else struggling with xxxxxxx (fill in the blank here). But you are not alone, I promise.
      The other side of “yes, this is totally normal and lots of people have this challenge” is that, common or not, if disorganization is causing stress or dysfunction, we still need to conquer it.  So, rest assured, lots of folks have organizational challenges, and more importantly, here are some ideas on how to solve them!  Read on for “Truth Bombs About Socks(more…)”.

     Today’s public service announcement?  It’s 7/11, Free Slurpee Day.  You’re welcome.
Don’t know if you noticed, but in the last 11 days, we ushered in the second half of 2017.  Crazy,  right? Time really does fly.  Lately, I’ve been pondering my 3rd Quarter goals, signing up for events for Fall, and generally thinking big picture thoughts in the midst of sun and fun with friends and family.   The article I planned to write this week was going to challenge you to make some big-picture goals for the rest of 2017, and then this article came up in my FB memory feed, and I had to share it. So let’s start with “Who’s Driving This Car Anyway? YOU. You Are In Charge. and we’ll look at goals next week! (more…)
american_flag.jpg     I hope you enjoyed a great weekend and holiday. There is so much to be grateful for, especially this time of year.
     We have a holiday mid week this week.  Weird.   A Tuesday off.  So is Wednesday morning the new Monday morning?  And then just three days and a weekend again?  Very strange.  If starting your week is sometimes a struggle, especially when it’s a re-start like this week!! – read on for Ways to Make Monday Mornings Less Icky.
     Did you know? I belong to an amazing group of accomplished professional speakers, the Chicagoland Speaker’s Network. Click here to find out more about us and our wide range of topics and talents (more)…. 
How is your week going?  I’m going to let you in on a little secret – I am a big fan of planning and routine.  Ok, so that’s not really a secret.
I rely on planning and routines to keep all the facets of me – family, home life, professional life, volunteering and service – running smoothly. Occasionally I’ll break routine for fun and spontaneity, and occasionally it will break when other factors intervene.
But the most important thing to remember when life gets off track is that we can get back to normal when we’re ready, as long as we know what normal is. This week I share strategies to use “When Our Morning Doesn’t Start As Planned”. Read on…(More)

Tuesday, June 20:  Organize Your Car This Week (aka, What’s That Smell?
How is your summer going?  Everyone finally out of school?  We’ve been out for weeks, and I feel like we’re hitting our stride.
I took a good look around my car today.  I spent a few minutes tidying it up after dropping off a batch of donations for a client. And I realized that for all the time I spend in my car, I’m so grateful it’s clean and organized and pleasant.  Want to improve your day?  Take care of your car! Read on for “Organize Your Car This Week (aka, What’s That Smell?)”
If you try one thing this week, try this: Take your care to a car wash, and get it cleaned inside and out!  (Yes, a car wash, it’s better for the environment….more…)

Tuesday, June 13:   How High Are Your Eyes?  (a.k.a. Where to keep the canned tuna?)
This past week, I celebrated my 14th anniversary as a Professional Organizer. Wow.  Whoa.
I appreciate each of you every day for your faith and trust in me and my abilities, and I look forward to many more years of imagining better with you and restoring order from chaos, one room or client or project at a time.
Last week also found me settling back into our almost-finished kitchen and helping friends get settled in their new home.  These two experiences reminded me of a very helpful rule of thumb to use when determining where to store items in our homes.  Read on to learn more in “How High Are Your Eyes? (a.k.a., Where to store the canned tuna … more).

Tuesday, June 6: Summer’s New Normal
     Hello everyone!  Summer is here, at least in the Klimczak household.  Everyone’s out of school, summer work and schedules have begun. But some things remain the same.
Last week, my awesome accountability partner asked me what my “New Normal” is for summer.  Her insightful question has helped me to be intentional about how I will spend my summer! Read on to learn more with “Summer’s ‘New Normal'(more…)”.