Fresh Coat of Paint
Fresh Coat of Paint

As another start of a New Year gets underway, it’s time to start fresh with your home as well. There are many affordable ways to give your home a fresh start for the New Year. Take note of our five easy tips below to get your home ready for 2014.

1. Paint. A fresh coat of paint on your walls can make a big difference, but paint can be used on some of your furniture too. Take an old dresser and give it a bright color of paint, and you have a “new” piece for your home to catch the eye of your guests.

2. Light Fixtures. You can get unique light fixtures for a pretty affordable price in stores and online, and these can make a big difference in updating your home. Whether you are looking for a simple or elaborate fixture, this slight refresh will not only provide light to your home, but it will add a touch of your style as well.

3. Stackable Storage. If you have been following along with our blog here, you will know that we have said it before (and will say it again,) nothing is worse for your home than clutter! Help fight the clutter with stackable storage options, and this will make your home look better than you think. Whether you are looking at a shelving unit or just some baskets or Rubbermaid containers on shelves you already have, this organization will take years off your home.

4. Picture Frames. Many people have picture frames around their home, and while we are not suggesting that you throw them all out and go buy new ones, we are suggesting you consider updating the photos in these frames. This will provide a small refresh to your home for less than a dollar per photo usually! How can you say no to that?

5. Storage Unit. One of the best refreshers you can give your home is to take some of the items out of it. If you have a storage unit, you can help keep clutter out of your home (if you are questioning the importance of this, please review tip number three) without having to get rid of some of the items.

Stop by LifeStorage to view our self storage options. We have many different sizes for our customers to choose from, and who knows, one of them may be your personal storage unit soon!

Organize Today
Organize Today

It’s the start of a new year, which also means a fresh start for your resolutions. Whether you want to lose weight, spend more time with your family or get that promotion, one thing you will need for every resolution is to be organized. When you are organized with your goals, you are more likely to stick to them. Follow our top three easy tips to keep your resolutions for 2014.

1. Write Them Down. The best way to hold yourself accountable is write your resolutions down. You can even share them with some family and friends to help hold you accountable or you can keep them to yourself. This year, many people are even posting their goals on social media to make themselves more accountable as well.

2. Pencil Yourself In. Whatever your resolution is, plan for it each day. Make sure it is in your planner, phone, calendar, or whatever else you use to keep yourself organized. You can even create a reminder on your phone to keep yourself organized.

3. Give Yourself Reasons. You are more likely to keep New Year’s Resolution if you have a reason to do so. Think of why you made this resolution and what keeping it would do for you. Write these resolutions down so if you are ever not feeling motivated to keep your resolution, you can refer back to why you made it in the first place for some extra encouragement.

Stop by your self storage unit here at LifeStorage to get any items or equipment that will help you keep your resolution so you have all of the backup you need.

We want to wish you a Happy New Year from all of us here at LifeStorage.

Holiday Baking
Holiday Baking

The holidays are a big time for baking, and with everything else you have to do during this time, it’s important to make sure you simplify this process as much as possible. Before you get started, make sure to plan ahead and simplify your holiday baking, and you will end up taking less time overall.

First things first, you want to decide ahead of time what cookies you make and make a list of what ingredients you need to make these. Before you start baking, whether it is the day before or the hour before, make sure you have all the ingredients and go out to get the ones you don’t have. During this time, you will want to make sure you have all other supplies as well, including pans, parchment paper, cookie cutter and any other supplies you need for these cookies at hand. If there are some item you don’t use often that you keep in your storage unit, you’ll want to get those ahead of time as well.

Once you have all your supplies and ingredients, make sure you have an order to your baking. For example, if you’re making chocolate chip cookies and sugar cookies, you’ll want to start the sugar cookies first so you can let them cool while you prepare the other cookies and then you can decorate them sooner. You can pre-measure all your ingredients ahead of time so when it comes time for mixing, you have everything ready. Lastly, we suggest you leave it to the dishwasher to do all the dishes for you. After all your baking, this will be a welcome break.

Once all your holiday baking is done, you should stop into your self storage unit at LifeStorage and put all your baking supplies you don’t need often back in storage. You will want to keep your home in order to prepare for any holiday guests.

Gift Wrapping
Gift Wrapping

If there is one time in the year where you will need your wrapping paper supplies over and over again, it’s now. So we don’t recommend putting away all your wrapping paper supplies each time and pulling them back out again, but on the other hand, you can’t leave your house a mess between wrappings. Take advantage of our five storage items that make for easy storage when making one room in your home organized for holiday wrapping.

1. Over the door hanger.  A simple over the door hanger with storage baskets and shelves can be used to organize your items while still keeping them orderly and out of sight. This is a great place to store your wrapping paper, ribbons, and gift bags, depending on where the shelves are placed.

2. Wrapping bucket. Using a bucket to put all your wrapping paper rolls will keep them together and out of the way, but you will still be able to see what you have to use. You can get a bucket at most stores and choose from what style you want to make this more personal to your home.

3. Hamper. Use a hamper to hold your wrapping paper, and you can even hang your tissue paper over the side on this one. This is helpful because you may have an extra hamper in your home that you can repurpose for this.

4. Drawers. Drawers are an easy way to put away your wrapping supplies while still keeping them in an easy to access place to make for easy wrapping often. This is a great idea to store your wrapping items all year to keep them organized.

5. Filing cabinet. Use a filing cabinet to organize flat items in your wrapping supplies like tissue paper, greeting cards, and more making it easier to find when you need it

Using these storage items will help keep you organized and speed up your holiday wrapping. Once you have finished wrapping though, consider using your self storage unit at LifeStorage to hide your gifts until you are ready to give them.

Photo credit: Jonelle Weaver

Storage Units
Thank You Storage Units

In spirit of the Thanksgiving holiday, we here at LifeStorage have a lot to be thankful for. From our families to our good customers, we could go on about the things in life we are thankful for, but to stay on topic about organization and storage, we know that even the small things we should be thankful for. That’s why there are also many reasons we have to be thankful for our self storage units. Think about it. We get a storage unit for a reason, but there are many reasons to be thankful for it so below are our top three reasons.

1. It clears up room in your home. When you have a storage unit, you can free up room in your own home by storing items there instead of within your home. This help keeps your home clutter free and organized (which is especially great if you have house guests coming for the holidays).

2. It allows you to keep items you may not need now. If you have items, especially bigger items like extra furniture, that you do not need at this moment but may need later on, your storage unit gives you a place to keep it instead of having to get rid of it. This helps get rid of your dilemma of whether to keep it until you need it or get rid of it and buy something new when you do need it.

3. It gives you a space to store seasonal items. When seasonal items are kept in your storage unit instead of a basement or garage, you have more room in these places. This lets you celebrate the holidays with a bang but still lets you keep your home in order the other times of the year when you are not using the decorations.

There are so many more things we all have to be thankful for, but we’ll let you decide what you are thankful for yourself. We wish you and your loved ones a very Happy Thanksgiving! After Thanksgiving, head over to your self storage unit to grab your holiday decorations to begin decorating for Christmas.

Guest Room
Guest Room

It is getting harder and harder to deny the holidays are coming. The signs are all around us, so we might as well accept it and start to prepare. So if the holidays will bring overnight guests to your home, you should prepare your guest room for visitors now so you are not doing it (along with everything else) the night before they arrive).

The first thing you should do is clear your personal items out of the closet and drawers in the guest bedroom. You want your guest to feel welcome, so they shouldn’t have to put their stuff around yours. You will also want to make sure the room isn’t cluttered with knick knacks or storing items you don’t know where else to put because this will make the room feel crowded. Then you should go ahead and put clean sheets on the spare bed for your guest and make sure the bed is made upon your guest’s arrival.

After the guest bedroom is set, another room you will want to make sure is clean and organized for your guest is the bathroom. Make sure you have towels clean and ready for your guest as well. You may also want to make sure you have toiletries ready in case there’s anything they forget to bring, like a toothbrush or their own shampoo.

Lastly, you’ll want to make sure your kitchen is clean and organized too. Throw out any older food and then make sure your kitchen is stocked so your guest is well fed while staying in your home.

Once you have all these steps taken, go ahead and stop by your self storage unit at LifeStorage to bring in any items that you were temporarily storing in the guest bedroom.

Pull-Out Storage
Pull-Out Storage

We know that Halloween just passed, but the signs of the holidays approaching are becoming more and more apparent. Stores are putting their holiday decorations out, holiday commercials are starting to air, and Starbucks even has their red holiday cups out! So don’t let yourself get behind in the hype of the holidays. You know what you have to do so get ahead while you have the time. One way to get ahead is by organizing your kitchen so you are prepared to cook for the holidays.

The first step you will want to take is to get any items you don’t use often that you may have stored away. Think of all the kitchen items you’ll need for your holiday cooking and baking and make sure they’re available and ready in your kitchen.

Next you’ll want to make sure the items in your kitchen are in an order that makes sense. Keep like items together in your cabinet so they are easy to find. You may also want to invest in items that will assist in your organization, like this CanSolidator from Costco, which will make it easier to organize the cans in your pantry (and keep them from “hiding” other items). Items like a Lazy Susan in your cabinet will make it easy to get to those items in the back, especially for smaller items that you may have a lot of like spices. Another great tip is to hang items that you can, like aprons and potholders, to keep them from crowding up your drawers.

We suggest you get started on organizing your kitchen because the holidays are going to sneak up on us soon. Once you do that, you may even want to start taking your holiday decorations out of your self storage unit at LifeStorage.

Pinterest Boards
Pinterest Boards

Have you heard of social media site Pinterest? This digital pin board is a place where people can “pin” items they like, recipes they want to try, new ideas, and more. One great way to use Pinterest is to find new organizational tips for around your home and self storage unit.

You can find many different ways to organize your home on Pinterest. One of the great things you’ll find is how to repurpose old items around your home to make them work for you and your organization. Take for example your coffee creamer, like Coffee-mate. After you finish it, clean it out and take off the label, and you now have a clear container that you can use for snacks, small craft items or even small toys like legos!

They also have so many different ideas of how to organize your drawers and cabinets. You may even find new organizational tools on this site that you didn’t even know exists.  This is a great place for you to browse to gather ideas for your at home organization. We suggest you take to go through and make a Pinterest organization board to gather ideas for your home. Then go ahead and go through what you think is doable for your home and start getting to work on making your home Pin-worthy!

After you go through and organize your home from your Pinterest ideas, head over to your LifeStorage self storage unit to put some of those organizational ideas to use in your storage unit! That way the next time you need an item from your storage unit, you’ll know exactly where to find it.

Haunted by clutter?
Haunted by clutter?

Here at LifeStorage, we are getting into the Halloween spirit. So we start to think about what haunts you in your home organization, and we have to say the one item that is probably most common is clutter. Clutter can haunt us all year round, but it can especially pile up around the holiday season. Let us help you keep the hauntings to Halloween only and get rid of the clutter before the busy holiday season starts up.

When getting rid of clutter, there are three easy steps. First, go through all your drawers and closets to see what you actually have (though you can do this one at a time). Next, go through to decide what you still need and use against everything else, which is what you’ll toss or donate. Lastly, you just need to bring your items to either your storage unit, donation center or to the trash.

To make this task less haunting for you, we have even listed three common items below that may unnecessarily been cluttering up your home.

1. Food – Go through your pantry and see any canned or boxed food that you know your family isn’t going to eat. These can be donated to a food drive, especially with the holiday season approaching.

2. Books – If you have books you know you won’t read (or won’t read again), you can donate these to your local library, sell them at a used book store, or even swap books with some friends so you can get something you’ll actually read.

3. Kids artwork – Though you want to keep all your children’s memories, you don’t have to keep every item of artwork they’ve created (or at least not in your home). Go through and either toss it or put it in your storage unit.

Once your home is less cluttered, run over to your self storage unit at LifeStorage to put any items in that you don’t want cluttering up your home, and then have a Happy Halloween!

TV Center Organized
TV Center Organized

Entertainment units are a staple in many homes. They provide many different purposes depending how big the unit is as well as the design of it, but entertainment units can provide helpful storage solutions for your home!

There are many different storage units out there for people to consider. You can get a simple entertainment unit with just a drawer or two underneath where your television goes, or you can get a more elaborate entertainment unit that basically creates a box around your television, like the one shown in the photo. Whichever you choose looks best in your home, you can make the entertainment unit work for you as a storage solution.

Your entertainment unit is also a place to store many different items if you get one with shelves, drawers, and/or cabinets.  One of the most common items to store here is your DVDs, CDs, and Blu-ray discs. For your shelving on your entertainment unit, this is a great place to use for decoration. Picture frames, vases, and more can be displayed on your entertainment unit to prove that it’s more than just there to serve its purpose, it is also decoration!

Make sure not to make your entertainment unit overcrowded though. Too many knick-knacks and overstuffed drawers will make your house look messy and make it harder to find what you need. So clean out your current entertainment unit (especially if you are planning to get a new one) and be picky about what you keep in it. Then head over to your storage unit at LifeStorage to keep those items you don’t want in your entertainment unit in there instead. Trust us, you’ll be glad you did!

Photo credit: wayfair.com