Sunday, July 11, 2010

They call me Pigpen. Help get me organized. A #giveaway! Win stuff! For real!

I have a secret.

It's a dirty one.

I can't believe I'm writing about this, but I NEED help!!!!!

You know Charlie Brown's friend Pigpen? Well, that's me. At least, that was what my sisters used to call me growing up.
This is Pigpen. I make him look organized.

I'm a mess. Literally.  A trail of debris and havoc follows where ever I go. I throw things around. Even when I "clean" I create a bigger mess. I do the dishes and Ben re-washes them all.

We moved into our new house, and guess what? It's a disasterous mess.

It's not like I like being the bringer of chaos and disorder. It's just who I am. I'll never be a neat freak (thank goodness for my husband).

So in the new place, I have an office (who hoo). But, just can't get it organized. And, it's starting to get to me. Big time! At our old place I at least had my own sort of system. Here, I'm behind on mailing out things (sorry if I owe you something) and can't find anything in general.

Today I'm sitting in my office, only I can't work. I'm jittery, unfocused, and honestly feeling angry and restless. I think the state of this room has something to do with that. I want to create a vibrant, clean, organized, peaceful space to work.

So, here's where you all come in. Help me organize this wreck. Help! Help! Help!

Leave your organizational tips (we're on a tight, tight, tight budget) and links to crafty, clever (read cheap) ways to organize.

Now the part you've all been waiting for... win stuff!!!

The contest: Because I really need help, I'm giving away a prize pack to a random commenter. So just leave a comment with organizational tips or links. And, if you're a disorganized slob like me, just leave a comment showing me support.

The prize: I'm going to make it up as I go of random cool stuff I find while cleaning, but know for sure I'm going to include a pink for Cora bracelet (or two)!!! I don't have many of these left, so they aren't for sale, but you can win one. I promise the other stuff will be fun and cool. And, who doesn't like a mystery prize?

The pink bracelet up for grabs.

Fine print: Unfortunately, can only mail to U.S. or Canada, everyone's welcome to comment, I'll just pick another winner if an international commentator wins at first. And, I'll delete comments that don't include a tip or support. I so need the support people.

And, finally so you know what you're dealing with, my office. (So embarrassing).

If you have questions about what we're working with, leave them below, or find me on Twitter, @kristinebrite.

And, now with a lot of courage, I hit publish unveiling my dirty secret to the world.

Edited: Forgot to include a deadline to submit those tips. I blame my messy office for causing my scattered brain. I'll leave those open for a week, so leave a comment by 11:59 pm July 17, 2010.

UPDATE: Giveaway is close.... And the winner....



  1. Love the idea! I too am not the neatest person in the world. I use the rule that if I haven't used it or even though of it in the past month (I don't even go the typical 6 month length) that I don't need it. I toss it or send it to charity.

    For those pesky cords, I use zip ties to tie all of the cords together to make one big neat cord instead of tons of random cords everywhere.

    Because of my disorginzation, I've lost my kids shot records. Maybe you have them in your stuff?! I've looked everywhere. If you find them, will you send them to me! haha! :o)

  2. I would be happy to give you some tips (especially if you emailed me more pictures) I am a professional organizer and like a good challenge ;) No charge, find me @multitaskingme on twitter

  3. I would love one!

  4. lost my GPS too. If you find an extra one laying around, send those with the shot records! This pregnancy brain is going to drive me batty! haha! :o)

  5. I let my mail and paperwork pile up all the time. I picked 1 day (the 21st) every month (write it on the calendar so it's a reminder) to go through all the papers in my stack. Pay the bills or do something with it if it needs attention or throw it away.

  6. Posting this for Shauni:
    Ok, I have no idea how to comment on your blog. But my suggestion is: I use under the bed storage, plastic, see through, roll around drawer-like things. We had to organize a lot of stuff when we moved in with Dave. Combined two homes in to one! Yikes! Good luck Kristine! :)

  7. Posting this for Jeanie S. (What is up Blogger):
    She tried to post as well and gave me support for being disorganized.

  8. Attempt number 2:

    Wires: try using ties to keep ALL the wires neatly together and if there are any extra cord, try putting it in a circle thing (you know what I'm talking about..)... and use a couple tie things to keep it together.

    Get rid of EVERYTHING you do not need. It helps create the mess (trust me. I have billions of things in my room that are just making the tornado-like hit area worse).

    If you have any old boxes (shoe boxes, or other smaller boxes) you can put wrapping paper on them and make labels for them so you can file things easier...

    And my goodness, if you're anything like me, get that desk cleared off and get your laptop on it before you knock off your laptop, that's NEVER good!!

    You can do it Kristine, yes you can!

    Bobbie Jo

  9. Ever heard of FlyLady?

    LOTS of tips and it's all free :)

  10. Oh, geez. I hear that! One of the things that helps me is to have baskets, buckets, and bins EVERYWHERE. This way there is always somewhere to toss things when they've lost their way home. :) I'd be HONORED to win a Cora bracelet and wear it proudly. Thanks for the chance!

  11. Kati Jo
    We are a 1 income family. I hate clutter but I am not a neat freak either. Due to our budget I love the dollar store. They have conatiners, baskets, paper holders, & a thingy to hold bills. I put the bills due in the thingy. Past bills that I need to keep are in a box separated & held together by rubberbands. My husbands loves to zip tie cords & it... See More works & keeps them untangled. Since u have a desk buy some file folders & label them. If u go to the dollar store & walmart u probably will spend less than $30. Sort everything first & make a list of how much u need so u don't over spend. I tried posting on your blog but it kept giving me an error msg

  12. Hi! We are pack rat family. We moved to current house few months ago and there are still many unopened boxes just sitting in a garage! Not only that, we have boxes all over the house too. We just have too much stuff and don't know where to begin... I found 2 sites that might be helpful to both you and me. Good luck!!!

  13. Here are few helpful tips:

    Mount your computer monitor on a swing arm to save space on a small desktop.
    Add a drafting table if you do much drawing or writing by hand. An angled surface for this type of work will reduce pressure on your neck.
    If you tend to cradle the telephone receiver against your shoulder during long conversations, you're inviting neck and shoulder muscle spasms. Keep pain at bay with a headset. When it's not in use, hang it from a small hook attached to the side of your desk.
    A hallway just outside the office door can be a good location for a narrow bookcase to hold reference materials or backup supplies.
    Add storage space inexpensively by mounting kitchen cabinets from a salvage store on the wall above your desk. Look for cabinets designed to go under the kitchen counter; they're usually more spacious than standard upper cabinets.

  14. go to
    a simple, unstressed 27 fling boogie every day will do worlds for your space.

  15. Take everything out of the room. And as you put it back into the room. Go thru it. Doller tree has some great baskets that stack and are clear. Get a couple of them, and label the front. It will help a ton. If you where close to me, I would come and help you for free. I love to do things like that. My freinds think im crazy. Since im such a neat freak. Good luck. BTW i would love a Cora braclet.

  16. There is a show on fit tv (don't ask me why it's on the fitness channel) called "Neat". I LOVE the show!!! A professional organizer comes into people's homes and helps them get organized. The thing that makes it better than other organizational/cleaning shows is that she gets to the bottom of why people save things etc. She conquers the emotional reasons that people collect clutter (I needed that) and helps people to move forward (I needed that too!). So much of it made sense to me and really helped me get a handle on my own clutter!! I hope you find the show and love it as much as I do!!!

  17. You need to start sounds like you are overwhelmed (trust me I have been there). Gather all like items together and get rid of all the junk (donate it or throw it). Anything that you dont want in that room...move it where you do want it(I'm sure you already did this but mentioning it anyway) ;) I like baskets or even photo boxes to throw small items of the same type into. Go to a craft those ads and you can get them half off. Label the outside and either use a shelf, bookcase, anything you have around the house not in use or from a garage sale. Actually a cabinet with doors would be the best but would be a little investment but the others will work well too. If you have papers to file but no file cabinet you can get plastic containers for that purpose for around 10. Its hard to know what you are trying to organize (types of items)... So I hope these ideas help. Just try to break it up. Ten minutes a day and you will be where you want to be in no time. Good luck and you CAN do it.


  18. Hi! This is a site that I used that helped me start off organizing my room, maybe it will help you as well!

  19. Step one: get rid of what you don't need

    Step two: think about whether you are a vertical or horizontal organizer. The traditional vertical organizer finds file folders in a drawer a terrific thing. Horizontal organizers need to see what's available. This will inform how you organize.

    Step three: Whatever you think is top function for the space gets the most organizing. If you spend money, this is where the majority of it goes.

    So, what I'm saying is (I guess) don't just organize to organize. Organize to make a successful area.

    hope this help. take care and god bless kristine

  20. I would start with the desk and set it up exactly the way you want it. Everything else can wait. Once you are productive in the workspace, computer/laptop, printer all set up then you just start working on the rest of it one peice of paper at a time. Once the paper is in your hand deal with it and move on to the next. It will get easier. Just take a deap breathe and dive in...You must post your progress though that way if you get stumped on what to do next you can get help along the way.

  21. My personal favorite:

  22. Shannon NeatherlinJuly 11, 2010 at 8:28 PM

    FLYLADY saved me!!! Go join her Kristine will help you TONS and teh best is you won't even feel like you are working :)

  23. I'm a slob too lol. I've been getting better though! Blast some music while you are cleaning,., may make it easier. I know when I was younger and I couldn't see my bedroom floor anymore I would set up checkmarks. Get everything clean up to that mark than move it and do up until that point. Focus on one area at a time.

    Ulkieab at gmail dot com

  24. I'm a slob too. Things that have helped us declutter...Hide it. I'm not kidding. We went to Goodwill and paid $10 for a used filing cabinet and chucked all the paperwork we thougth we should keep in it. It's a mess in there, but nobody can SEE it. Plastic totes are my best friend. The big rubbermaid kind with snap on lids. Fill them up with whatever is laying around that you want to keep, but don't know exactly what to do with yet. Label your'll thank me for that later, LOL. Stack them in a corner neatly if you have no other place to put them. Cover with a pretty piece of fabric or put a screen in front of them. As you find yourself with spare time, go through one tote and try to find homes for everything inside. No home but want to keep it? Close the lid back and try again later :)

  25. Ask your little brother to help you clean....I'm good at that :)

  26. Wait, you mean we are not supposed to live in a world of clutter and chaos? Hmmm...guess I missed that memo ;) Seriously, a small house = clutter build up within second of cleaning. *sigh* Good luck and so glad that your computer is set up now.

  27. I'm messier than you are. Ummm
    (If I win can I have that box fan...???)

  28. Ok girl...I'm your organizing girl. I cleaned up my sisters office & shelves when she broke up with her boyfriend last year. I boxed all the memorablia away while she sat weepy in iher office chair. Don't worry she asked me to do it.

    I'm Monica from friends.

    First thing, get everything off the floor. Empty boxes go to recycle, boxes with stuff inside go into storage if you are not using the items inside. That fan's gotta be used or stored. If there is too much stuff that belongs in the room but is not sorted, make piles on one side. The goal get some room to walk in!

    Start with desk, clean off all on top. Place laptop on desk if thats where you want it or just get it out of your way.

    Throw out paper you don't need. Make a keep pile and a throw away pile. Keep going until all paper in the room either has a home or is garbage. Then tackle any piles of stuff you had in the room. A few each day until you are done.


  29. Ok~I get totally overwhelmed when looking at a big project; so I tend to created an expanded mess 1st buy dumping "like" items into baskets or bins.

    Walmart or Big-Lots are great places to get organizational tools, like plastic bins or containers. Then you can start by dumping similar things into the same bin & then slowly organize the items in each bin by order of priorities (eg, business paperwork, personal paperwork, Cora's org items, requests, etc).

    Also, I find clear bins are best, so I can see what is in them. (For instance, my garage is filled with clear bins that have party goods, wrapping supplies, holiday items-by holiday, etc, so I can see what is in them, in addition to labeling them on each side.)

    I follow the cliche "a place for everything and everything in its place," keeping in mind that how I organize things may be completely different from someone elses. Just make sure it makes sense to you.

    Off course if you saw my room or house right now, you would so think I am lying about this. I used to organize things for other people, in addition to myself, but since my illness, organizing has become more difficult...but I try!

  30. First stop beating yourself up because of this. Here is my theory. the house along with everything else will still be there tomorrow. Take time to do the things that are "important" first and that is taking care of "YOU". Then pick one and only ond thing to take care of. ie...the desk, and only the desk, or the floor by the desk and only the floor by the desk. If you get that will feel great at accomplishing your "to do" list. If not just remember the world won't collaps around you if it don't happen...
    From one unorganized person to another, Becky

  31. Jessica HaentjensJuly 14, 2010 at 9:57 PM

    I am so disorganized too! I can't find anything important around here, but one thing I do when it becomes overwhelming is work one corner of the room at a time. After that corner is set up the way I want I continue with the next. For more storage space...I love love finding great treasures at goodwill!! Good Luck <3

  32. Oh kristine...I'm a totally slob too. And i can't get organized at all!!! My mind works too fast and does too much to concentrate on the boring ritual of organizing. LOL So I have no tips but I am cheering you on!!! I've been trying hard to get things organized here too. I don't have an office though. :( It's my dining room hahaha

  33. yah, i wish i had tips. my best idea for myself is to designate one area that's messy for you (my desk is my wreck). but, then my stuff spills over onto the kitchen table too haha. so, i will just give you my support! :-)

  34. I am the QUEEN of making things worse before (if) it ever gets better. I love the idea of take everything out of the room and put it back neatly but if it were me, I'd have a big disheveled mess in the hallway for 6 months.. and wouldn't my husband lvoe that!. I keep two SMALLish rubbermaid containers with lids in our coat closet. One has batteries, extension cords, etc. and one (bigger) has lightbulbs. That way, I at least know where to find THAT stuff.

    Good luck! Let me know if you find anything that REALLY works for you.

    Oh, I have a friend who's throwing/giving away 20 things a day for the rest of July.. that might help.. (heck, I could just PUT away 20 things /day)

  35. I have a hard time organizing myself, but when I became a school teacher I had to try. I have found that plastic bins with labels has helped tons. I also love the bins that have drawers. I hope that helps!!! Good luck with the organizing.

  36. Melissa Lewis......
    I would deff start small and box up all the stuff you are not using and tuck it in a closet or under bed storage. Look around the house for things you can repurpose for use in the office like we are using a large speaker for a table to but our computer on.

  37. I just got back in touch with an old friend who was nice enough to tell me that her mother used to call me pig pen. I had dirty elbows and didn't bathe often as a kid. Still, not something you want to hear, right?

    I am still a freaking mess. I spent today going through the mounds of shit on my desk and we went through some stuff in the apartment. I've posted a crapload of stuff on If you haven't been there, go!! You can pretty much get rid of anything and the best part is that someone reuses your old stuff, hence avoiding the dump.

    One man's trash is another's action!

  38. I use things like old salsa jars for paper clips and small things, my late grams coffee mug is my pencil/pen holder...I try to recycle containers for more useful purposes.

  39. ARGH! Blogger keeps eating my comments! Trying again.

    I'm terrible at organization. I try to keep it to a dull roar, but it doesn't always work. I usually feel like I'm fighting a losing battle.

    This isn't necessarily an office organization tip, but it affects the office so I'll share it. I have a small trash can, shredder, and basket next to the mailbox (or by the door you bring in mail). I immediately sort the mail as soon as I get it. Credit card offers & those kinds of things immediately get shredded, junk mail tossed in the bin, important stuff put in the basket. Once or twice a week, I sort the basket, file forever keep, put bills in bill paying basket, and do whatever needs to be done with the rest. It helps with the mail a lot!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...