a helpful reminder

Having little helpful reminders are good.  Goodness knows with each pregnancy I clearly lost more brain cells than I ever started with, so now I pretty much know nothing, and remember nothing.

Case in point, packing for my trip with the girls I made a quick dash out to the car to get something. My running shoes were also outside by the stroller.  I put them on the front doormat so that I wouldn’t forget to bring them inside to pack.  When I got back to the house from the car, I tripped over the shoes and cursed whoever would be stupid enough to leave them on the doorstep.

Oh right.  That was me.


Welcome to my life.

But my youngest sister, well she is notorious for not remembering things.  (So maybe this all just runs in the genes and has nothing to do with my pregnancies….).  She might be the nicest human being on the planet, but remembering her phone charger isn’t high on the list.  Mostly because she is busy thinking of things she needs to bring to make eveyone else smile.  She is super amazing like that.

Anywhoo, her hubs is super cute and can draw really funny cartoon character notes and such.  When I arrived at her apartment with the girls on Saturday and saw this hanging on the door, all I could say was, BRILLIANT!

And then another for when she is traveling…HILARIOUS. I mean, BRILLIANT AGAIN!

We all need these hanging on the front doors in our lives!  If you don’t have a cute hubs that can draw one for you, I’m sure any old handy dandy list you make, and then laminate, will work just fine!

Good luck! (Now what was I going to write this post about…)

great pack ‘n go snack!

The day I started shopping at Trader Joe’s I think a whole new world opened up to me!

(isn’t that a line in a movie???)

One of my, OK my husband’s favorite snacks,

(because mine would the chocolate peanut butter cups…just sayin’)

is the individual packages of almonds.

If you can have a snack pack of chips, raisins, and crackers, why not almonds??

The “Just a handful” individual packages are perfect to throw in your diaper bag/purse.

When you’re running tight on time between meetings, kids carpools, errands, appointments…

Grab “Just a Handful” out of your bag and keep going!

Healthy, full of energy, and filling!

tab it baby ~ part 2

A few months ago, I wrote about my new favorite organization tool
that let me make up a project binder just the way I wanted it

I use this binder every hour of every day!

But what makes this binder work is the awesome removable tabs.

I am WAY BEYOND IN LOVE with these tabs…

My newest way to use them is in my Flat Belly Diet Family Cookbook.

Because I’m primarily cooking every meal out of this book, I found I was flipping back and forth and having to look up recipes all the time.  The Post it Note Tabs are FABULOUS… Great time saver!  I actually think they would be great to use in any cookbook to mark your most used recipes.  Also good to use as a book mark in the current book your reading (assuming you’re low tech like me and absent of a Kindle or iPad).  They really do remove with such ease! Just peel and re-stick…BRILLIANT!

Love things that save me time AND make my life easier!

Can you think of other great uses for these??

back to basics ~ master closet

A few weeks ago I had one of those moments you see in cartoons where the character yells so loud and so long that the whole world around him FREEZES.

You know what I’m talking about.

When water shooting out of a fire hydrant freezes in mid shoot…

The person jumping is somehow suspended indefinitely in his jump….

The world just stops and stares at the source of the yell waiting for the OK to return to life.

Well that’s what happened to me. And that’s what started my return to the basics.  My youngest sister understood my desperation.  I think she saw it in my eyes.  She was in town for Mother’s Day weekend and I somehow managed to convince her to help me freeze time and start to sort out the mess that had become my life.

This is where I had the most angst…

My closet needed fixing.

Clothes needed to be burned.

My office needed reorganizing.

A better system for posts needed to be put into place.

I needed to lose baby weight.

And sometimes solving the problems of the world is just easier when you have someone by your side holding your hand, or at the very least telling you how BAD your favorite skirt from 3 years ago will look even if you could fit into it again…simply put, you may not keep it.

The first place we tackled was my bedroom.  My problems were..

  1. Bookcases that stored our books had become a fascination for our 1 and 2 year old.  Every morning they would systematically pull EVERY book out.  So every day these needed to be picked up and put back.  I would have moved them, but had no where else to store them.
  2. My closet was a disaster.  It had become a mix of maternity clothes, post maternity clothes, and clothes I was hoping to fit into again, just a random cluster of nonsense.  My biggest problem was not being able to find something to wear, that I liked and that fit me, in a 15 MINUTE WINDOW window.  Which is about all I have every morning .
  3. Too many clothes from the past stored in boxes that I was afraid to toss…what if when I lose the baby lbs I want to wear it again???

This is what left my room for the Goodwill

This is what remained…

My Elfa system from The Container Store was already in place.  I had done these when we first moved into the house.  But they were overfilled and disorganized.  My sister chose to make the 2 pull out drawer shelves on the wall for shoes.  Running shoes on top, sandels and flats below.  All of my heels rest on pull out shoe shelves.  Below are frequently used wedges, slippers, and a multi-use bin filled with flip flops (which are the true “frequently used” shoes).

My sister asked me if I wanted to arrange my closet by color, article of clothing, etc.  I prefer to have like items grouped together, i.e. skirts, pants, shirts.  And then within that, like styles.  So long sleeves blouses, then long sleeve shirts…

After weeding through the shoes that should be tossed, (the overflow was stored in the little armoire in our room), she moved the shoe boxes not worn as often to the top shelf of the closet.  This used to be where a billion work sweaters and knit tops for my office job were folded.  But I was shown the light (a glaring light actually) that many were not really a style I would go back to….and did I really see myself going back to an office job that called for that same (outdated) style?

Well, no.  So they were gone.

The open bin to the left holds clutches and bags not used everyday.

These are Elfa drawers.  I love Elfa drawers and try to use similar ones around the house so that I can move them around and combine them together when needed.  Left top drawer is bras, going down is socks & tights, workout clothes, pajamas.  On the right top, underwear, shapewear, bathing suits (so ironic that bathing suits are under shapewear….SIGH), hats & visors.  To the left of the drawers are frequenyly used boots (all others are in boot boxes under my bed until fall).

On the back left and right side of the closet, I have large storage boxes that I bought at Target YEARS ago.  This used to be the storage system I used for everything, but then they stopped making some of the boxes.  So I’ve slowly been incorporating the Container Store clear storage boxes.

These boxes hold:

  1. Winter ski clothes
  2. Maternity clothes (only the ones that would be worn again if anyone was ever pregnant)
  3. Post prego clothes I plan to try on again in 2 months. (This was her tip as well.  Pack them away and bring them out again on a set date.)
  4. And believe it or not, 1 entire box holds all my favorite jeans from 3 years ago.  I refuse to throw this box out until I’m able to fit into each and every pair.  If this is something that helps me reach my goal, then so be it.

Basically my sister’s biggest tip was, if you can’t wear it now, don’t put it out. Only clothes that fit AND that you feel good in should be hanging in your closet. I had been holding onto items to have choices just in case, but really didn’t love them as choices.  Her advice, if you don’t love them and you don’t feel good in them, you wont wear them.  Therefore they just take up space and clutter the closet so you can’t see what your REAL choices are.  Get rid of them.

So we did.

I LOVED this trick!  So simple, WHY didn’t I think of this.  My brother-in-law has A LOT of t-shirts. One might call him a collector.  My sister folds his shirts normally, and then in half again, allowing the shirts to fit in a drawer like the photo above.  I LOVED this and so did hubs!  So much easier to see what’s in the drawer.  I actually changed the girls t-shirt drawers to look the same.

This is one of my favorite hangers from the Container Store.  Great when you live in small spaces (which I always have). My sisters tip was to always make sure you hang the pants in the rungs in the same direction.  Easier to tell what’s there.

This is the armoire in our room. It used to be filled with those shoe boxes now on the top shelf now.  As well as my running shoes and bags.  Since new space was found in the closet for those items, we moved the books safely behind the doors of the armoire.  I can get to them when I need them, but the Littles cannot. (Side note ~ I have used this piece of furniture in our TV room, the babies room, as a closet, and now to store books.  A good piece of furniture will have many lives in your home.

This left the book shelves empty for now.  Which although they look bare, it is soooo much better than having to pick up books everyday.

I’m good with them simple, bare, and CLEAN.

So we (SHE) solved the majors for this room.  Which LITERALLY lifted such a weight of my shoulders.  When this room and the hall closet were complete I felt like I could breathe again.  Silly I know, but I knew those were my trigger spots.

What are your favorite closet organizing tips and tricks? I would love to her them!  Hope our tips help you with your de-cluttering process!

For more closet help, see an earlier post with tips from Beth of Smart Style

Have a great week!!

700 hours in a day? nope, but how about an extra 2??

(In case you can’t figure this photo out,
this is Hayden playing “peek-a-boo” in my skirt, pretty typical of my day.)

When I first started writing this blog, my goal was to share tips and favorites that help our family out.  And that is still my goal.

But we’ve had a lot going on between launching the blog last October and welcoming little Piper’s arrival 4 weeks ago…now we are doing our best to adjust to this new life!  And it’s NUTTY!  So often throughout the day I use or do something that I think, “Oh I can’t wait to share this on the blog”….

Now if only I could get to the blog!

One reader was super sweet and actually mentioned My Favorite Everything on her blog, Baby To Go the other day, but as I read part of her comment:

“I love to hate My Favorite Everything… because well… this fertile myrtle has had 3 kids in the past two years (in three separate pregnancies) and she must have 700 hours in her day…”

I realized that I still look like I’m super human, which I am SO FAR FROM, I assure you!

I kind of approach life like one would a budget.  You could look at your budget and decide where you are going to cut back, or you can look at it and figure out how to make more money to do all the things you want to do…ORRRR you can do a little of both.  Which is what I do for our family.

A few area’s that I cut back on my “time budget”:

  1. I don’t watch that much TV.
  2. I am the only person in my book club that does not read, but I still enjoy seeing everyone every 6 weeks!
  3. I do not cook from scratch as much as I did pre kids.
  4. And I very rarely talk on the phone at home.

A few area’s that I make more for my “time budget”:

  1. I put my makeup on in the car, sitting in the driveway. Kids are strapped into their car seats (“read” – CANT MOVE or GET INTO TROUBLE).
  2. I worship Trader Joe’s and Costco. Often using something pre-made from Trader Joe’s, it tastes homemade (not store bought) and is typically made from fresh ingredients.  I freeze meat in bulk from Costco, pulling out whatever we need that night, in the morning to defrost. This all let’s me get dinner on the table in under 15 minutes and limits the number of times I go to the store in a week.
  3. I normally run major errands once a week on Saturday mornings with my husband which gives us 4 hands to keep track of kids and get more done.  We run a balancing act of “Who’s on first, What’s on second” while we hit the gas station, Costco, groceries, Babies R Us, Home Depot and Target.  Getting home in time for lunch and putting the Littles down for their naps.  Then we each have the 3 hour nap time to do “our own thing”.
  4. I online shop 99% of the time.
  5. I use my iPhone ALL THE TIME.  I answer emails at 3AM when I’m feeding Piper.  I tweet when I park the car before going into an appt.  I text friends to check in (even though talking is so much more fun, I may never get the chance to talk).  I phone stores and restaurants to let them know I’m on my way and could they meet me outside with my order.  I return calls when I’m in the car or on a walk – double duty.

It’s that last one on the list, “USING MY IPHONE all the time” that leads to the second reason for today’s post.  When I bought my iPhone a WHOLE NEW WORLD opened up to me!  I could visit websites, make online purchases, get directions, find a Starbucks with a drive thru, check emails for 5 accounts – I could run our family, my work and the blog all from my phone, in AN INSTANT! I love it!  The only down fall was that it required so much power. I found I needed to charge it all the time and was so frusterated when I would forget to charge it at night and then try to leave for an early appointment.  My car charger was never as fast as my home charger, and inevitably I would have everything plugged in the kitchen but be tied up with the kids in their room and not be able to get to it….GRRRHHHH.

Then I was invited to an SV Moms Group event at the end of February.  (Forgive me as I was days from having Piper and did not do a wrap up post on the event, but Jen at Tiny Oranges did a fabulous one!!)

There I met the amazing peeps from iGo.  Have you heard of them??  They have quickly become a FAVORITE, as their Charge Anywhere Charger NEVER leaves my side!  I’m not sure how I ever managed before owning one!

Truthfully the charger hung out in the box until the night before I left for the hospital. But that night I just had a feeling that it might come in handy, so I took it out to figure out what I had to do to set it up.


So easy…

Take it out of the box.

Plug it into the wall to charge.

Start using it to charge a zillion different products.

OK, that last part was a stretch, but you CAN charge just about any camera, MP3 player, iPod, cell phone, gaming devices, blue tooth headsets, etc.  CRAZY!

But the best part isn’t even that you can use it on basically every product in existence, the best part is that it is a “Charge Anywhere” charger. What mom doesn’t want that luxury!?!?!? It means you can charge something in your purse, your diaper bag, at a soccer game, while you’re recovering in bed from a C-section…

(This is mine, at the hospital, charging my phone from bed.  Told ya it never leaves my side!)

Check out their site to learn more about how you can:

  1. Charge 2 devices at the same time, from the wall or on the go…
  2. Works world wide…
  3. Small and compact…
  4. Charge from the wall while simultaneously charging the internal battery for on the go…
  5. It’s $49.99 (and free shipping over $25) and comes with a charging tip of your choice (different tips can be purchased separately for different products) – great gift idea for a birthday, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day etc…

And you KNOW I’m saving the best for last!!!


An AWESOME Giveaway!!  iGo is giving away a “Charge Anywhere” charger to 1 lucky MFE winner!!!  Rules (Comment separately, 1 entry for each):

  1. Check out the iGo website and comment with your Favorite product.
  2. Follow My Favorite Everything on Facebook.
  3. Follow iGo on Facebook.
  4. Follow My Favorite Everything on Twitter.
  5. Follow iGo on Twitter.
  6. Tweet about this giveaway – “@MyFavEverything shares tips to get a few extra minutes in your day. Lovin’ @iGo_Inc ‘s Charge Anywhere Charger! http://ow.ly/1vkx6″

Giveaway ends Thursday, April 15th at 5:00pm PST and is open to US and Canadian residents.

Good luck!  And Happy Thursday Everyone!

(Disclosure: I was given an iGo Charge Anywhere Charger at the SV Moms Group event.  I was not asked or compensated to write this post.  I fell in love with the charger while using it for the week  I was at the hospital and have not been able to put it down since.  I would love for this to become a favorite for you and simplify your life too!)