Tis the season

holiday

Ok, it may be a little early to start blasting Christmas music (at least in my opinion…but if you’re into that kind of thing, go right ahead), but December will be here before you know it and that means it’s time to get your holiday shopping list in order! I was walking around Georgetown yesterday (the wreaths are all up and they’re beautiful, but it’s kind of funny since it’s still in the 50s and 60s out), and I realized how crowded M Street will get once the holiday season kicks into gear. Basically now is the time for sane holiday shopping before things get too cray out there.

After spending way too much time in Francesca’s and Anthropologie, my head was bursting with gift ideas galore (don’t you just love when you spot something that you know would be perfect for someone on your list?). But if you still need some inspiration, I’ve got you covered…

Kate Spade candle: A winner for the girl who has everything.

Monogram pillow: Neutral enough no matter their preferred color scheme.

Baublebar bracelet: Black, white, and gold never go out of style.

Katie Kime print: The peppiest print will add a pop of color to her space.

Bar tray: A bit masculine, it’s the perfect finishing touch for your fave couple’s bar cart.

Domino book: Trust me, your design buff friend can’t wait to get her hands on this.

Essie polish: A festive shade + a gift card to her local mani place is = you nailed it.

Jewelry holder: Just pop in a bracelet and you’ve got yourself two great gifts.

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Easy ways to treat yourself…

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…without spending too much time or money.

  • Grab a piece of candy (or two) from the ever-tempting office stash without feeling guilty about indulging.
  • Read a few chapters of a new book before bed.
  • Light a candle and do a face mask on a random Tuesday night.
  • Eat your favorite breakfast food for dinner.
  • Order something on Amazon Prime that you could’ve just picked up at the store. Time is money, people!
  • Blast your favorite Pandora station while getting ready in the morning or on your commute home.
  • Treat yourself to an affordable massage or manicure.
  • Pick up a weird seasonal flavor of something just to try it.
  • Call or FaceTime a loved one.
  • Buy an issue of your favorite magazine even if spending $5 on something you’ll look at for 30 minutes feels silly.

What would you add?

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Closet Cleaning Hacks

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I’ve always liked to organize. When I was little, I would move furniture around in my room so often that my parents had to start telling me that I could only do so on Fridays/weekends so that I wouldn’t make a big mess before having to wake up for school the next day. My childhood room was always scarily clean and uncluttered, but that’s how I liked it!

Not much has changed even though I’m now on my third adulthood apartment (eek!). The other day after work, I had the weirdest urge to clean up my closet (it’s a strange size and was getting a bit out of hand) and was able to do so in less than 45 minutes.

My closet is technically a walk-in, but only in the sense that I can walk in and out rather than just reach in to grab things. (Note: the above closet layout is what dreams are made of and is unfortunately not mine). The closets I had in my apartments in Philly and New York were both HUGE, so this has been an adjustment. However, for all of the fun decor and wall art I collect, I’m really not that big of a clothes person and am good at paring down as needed. Having too many outfit choices kind of stresses me out, so I do a pretty good job of making consignment store runs and donation piles throughout the year to keep things from getting too chaotic.

ANYWAY. Here are my 45-minute or less closet cleaning tips…

  1. Pick a clothing type to organize and focus primarily on that. I’ve been digging into my sweater collection more as the weather has gotten cooler, but I wasn’t thrilled with how they were looking in my closet, so that was the focus of this cleanout. I had originally turned storage cubes on their sides (thanks for the idea, Mom!) and stacked them, piling up sweaters and sweatshirts in each cube. For awhile I decided to keep sweaters and sweatshirts in a big bin, but this wasn’t extremely functional, so I went back to the cube system and things already began to look much neater once I had re-folded and stored everything.
  2. Make a quick giveaway pile, even during a small clean-out. My church is holding a large yard sale event in early December, so I knew that if I found any clothes worth donating, I’d be able to get them off of my hands relatively quickly. I frequently sell clothes to consignment stores, but it really is hit or miss when it comes to what they’ll take. I had just made a big consignment run a few weeks back and was sent home with some rejects, so now those items have moved to my donate bag.
  3. Keep supplies at the ready. I like using thin, cloth hangers (the ones that are all the rage at the moment), and I found tons of extras that I had on hand from my move. I tossed them all into a large reusable bag that I now have hanging in my closet, ready for future use.
  4. Be practical. I decided that being November, it was finally safe to stash my portable fan on the top shelf of my closet (rather than letting it sit on the floor). I also filled a large tote bag with extra toilet paper and made it accessible without letting it take up prime real estate. Items that I have at the ready (aka on the floor of the closet) include my Hunter boots (they’re also generally useful for snowy weather) and a step stool (my top shelves are pretty high!). I’ve hung up bags, backpacks, and baseball hats on the hooks that are attached to my closet walls.

Less than an hour later, my closet was good as new and I was ready to move on with my evening! Organization really doesn’t have to be stressful if you go into it with a goal in mind. What tips would you add?

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