Monday, October 21, 2019

Ways to Organize This Month

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Here are a few more ways to get organized right now:

Create a designated tool storage area.  Random tools often end up in the kitchen in the 'junk drawer' and you know how I feel about junk drawers.  But these tools are necessary so get a toolbox, put the necessities in it, and designate a place to store it so that everyone always knows where it is.  If you need a lot, you may want to consider an entire dresser sized organizer that lives in the garage, while a small one with everyday essentials can sit in the laundry room.  Just remember to return things properly when you're done using it.

Get your will and other estate planning documents done and tell someone where they are.  It's really not that hard, and it has to be done.   At the very least, you need a will to direct where your stuff will go and who will distribute it (your executor), but you might as well do the other advanced directives while you're at it, like designating who makes the call to pull the plug if you're on life support.  Make sure you tell the executor that they are the executor and they have to distribute your stuff when you die and give them a copy of the paperwork.  Make sure they know where the originals are too, in case of any issues.  You should be able to find a local lawyer to draw up a will, trust, power of attorney for healthcare, and a power of attorney for property, for you and your spouse, for $500 or less, as long as your wishes are straightforward.

Do the same for financial and health information.  Once you've set up any powers of attorney, keep those documents with any important financial and health information.  Someone besides you should know where your health insurance and life insurance coverage formation is, where your money is and the account numbers, etc.  There is no automatic announcement to a bank that you died.  A loved one has to present a death certificate and will to collect anything and if they don't even know an account exists, that money just sits there forever, or until the bank figures out you're dead in 100 years and then transfer the money to the state.  Just tell someone where your stuff is, okay?

Put flannel sheets on the bed.  They're not essential, but they really are so cozy in the cooler months.  We love ours.  If you've got them, don't forget to use them now!

Wash windows.  It'll be the last chance you get before it gets too cold and the water freezes, so do it one last time.

Start making and freezing cookie dough.  I'm not a big cookie baker for the holidays but my parents' neighbor sure is.  She makes at least 12 different types of cookies that I can think of off the top of my head, but it's probably more.  Her secret is making and freezing the dough now.  It lasts over 3 months in the freezer, so start prepping some while you have time because that's the most complicated part.  Come Christmas, all you have to do is defrost and bake!

Put Halloween decor away according to room.  You can apply this tip to any holiday you go particularly crazy for, but ours happens to be Halloween.  Since we decorate top to bottom, I put things away into labeled storage containers by room.  Everything from the kitchen in one box, everything from the living room in another.  That way I can remember where everything goes next year and I can unpack and redecorate one room at a time throughout October.  It also helps to see what we have versus what we need in each room and I can make a shopping list as I pack so we can get things on sale.

What are you planning to organize?  Do you have your estate planning done?

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