Thursday 05.25.17

Tiny House Living with a NEAT Girl

As you know, we love organizing houses of all shapes and sizes...but it wasn't until our San Diego team told us that one of their organizers actually lives in a real life TINY house did we realize what "true" organization actually looked like. Please meet Carissa Leach who lives in the most adorable tiny house you've ever seen with her photographer boyfriend, Noel! Carissa, please tell us everything...

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Our tiny house is 8'-6" wide x 13'-6" high x 24' long with the tongue. It weighs 10,540 lbs. (We drove it onto a truck scale when we were finished with the build!)  
 
Noel and I spent a great deal of time thinking about how we would be using the space and what sort of items we use most often. Noel has construction experience and I learned how to draft floor plans while studying Interior Design, so we are at an advantage when it comes to DIY!  
 
A bathtub, king-size bed, dishwasher and washer/dryer were key components of the design process. We began sketching and mapping out the house around them. Every inch counts when you only have 260sf to work with and the details are crucial! I started a bunch of boards on Pinterest, tore pages out of magazines and visited tile stores for design inspiration. After a few months, rough blueprints in hand, we began sourcing materials and bought the trailer bed.  
 
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We planned on having open vertical space in the kitchen and decided to install a metal rack to store pots and rails to hang pans and utensil caddies.  The kitchen cabinets are fairly high up so we store less used items in them.  The open shelving look appeals to us and we knew clear glass jars were the way to go!  A lazy suzan was built into the corner cabinet and holds most of our dry goods. 
 
We designed floating stairs with a built-in desk underneath for a modern look.  A small file cabinet holds all of our important documents and I walk immediately from my mailbox to the recycling bin and discard unimportant papers.  The stairs take you up to the loft where we built a walnut and polycarbonate closet for our hanging clothes and fabric baskets for folded garments.  We donated and scaled down to what we thought would fit and then donated some more.  The interesting thing about living in a tiny house is that it challenges us to really think about our purchases and if we truly need a product or not.  
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tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county
A pocket door was built to slide into the bathroom wall using polycarbonate to let light through and make the space feel open.  We lifted the mirrored cabinets a few inches above the floor to make the room seem spacious.  An outdoor shower extends off the back to rinse sandy feet from beach outings and wash out wetsuits.   
 
Everything from the reclaimed redwood to the cabinet hardware was handpicked and installed/built by us!  (Except for the spray-foam insulation.) 
tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county

     

tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county

Carissa, this house could not be any cuter! You and Noel did an amazing job. Thanks for showing all of us the importance of minimalism and how any size place can be bright and cheery if you put some effort into it. Wish we could move in...if only it could fit all of us! 

:: SHOP THE POST HERE ::

 

 

xx

the NEAT girls

* all photos taken by Noel Gray

tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county
tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county
tiny house living, minimalism inspiration, capsule closet, organized homes, neat spaces, small spaces, home decor, design inspiration, noel gray photography, san diego home organizers, professional organizers san diego, professional organizers orange county
Monday 05.15.17

One More Reason to LOVE Manhattan!

Believe it or not, there's definitely a reason they call it the BIG apple! It's just so big with so many people...and most of those people live in small spaces that need to be as organized as possible! We are super happy to announce that Manhattan is getting a second NEAT girl. The demand was so impressive that we figured it was time to bring on another NEAT team there. Please meet Louisa Roberts! Our new NEAT IOP of NYC!

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NM :: Hi Louisa! Welcome to our NEAT family! We are so excited to have you. Our readers love learning all about the new girl in town. Please tell us a little about yourself. What brought you to NEAT Method and what were you doing before this? 

LR :: I actually found NEAT Method from an article on Glitter Guide and was immediately intrigued. For the past four years, I have worked in recruiting, HR, and administration in both the staffing and finance industry. I knew it was time for a change though and was excited to learn about this opportunity! 

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NM :: How long have you lived there?

LR :: I have lived here for a little over three years. I moved to the financial district of New York City in 2014 and then I moved to Jersey City in 2015. I will always be a small-town Pennsylvania girl at heart though.

NM :: What do you feel makes your city so unique?

LR :: New York City offers so much! I love the variety of things to do here—one weekend can be filled with shopping, a nice dinner, and a show, while the next might be a relaxing picnic in my favorite park. Anything is possible at any time!

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NM :: NYC is definitley unique! What are some of your favorite places to shop and eat there? 

LR :: I like to shop at the new Westfield World Trade Center. The Oculus is a magnificent space surrounded by a lot of shops. I also love to browse at local boutiques near my apartment like Vivi Girl Shop, Kanibal Co., Feena, and Mint Market. As far as food, the options are endless. Most of the time, I am eating pasta at an Italian restaurant or enjoying a cheese plate at a wine bar. My favorite restaurants are Razza, Aria, Lelabar, and dell’anima

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NM :: Besides all of your favorite local spots...who are some of your favorite influencers/businesses? 

LR :: My go-to bloggers for home inspiration are Syd and Shea McGee (@studiomcgee) and Jacquelyn Clark (@larkandlinen). For fashion and lifestyle bloggers, you need to follow Arielle Charkas (@somethingnavy) and Stephanie Sterjovki (@stephsterjovski). As far as businesses, I have recently been admiring design services like Homepolish, Havenly, and Laurel & Wolf. They all have huge networks of talented designers across the country. I love finding inspiration through their photos and home tours!

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NM :: Speaking of home inspiration, what is your most and least organized space in your own home? 

LR :: My closet is probably my most organized space. Of all of the places in my apartment, I feel like this space is truly mine to organize (and rearrange as often as I want!). The coat closet/only spare closet in my apartment is the least organized space. It’s a catch-all for everything. I haven't found a good way to organize the shoes, coats, umbrellas, bags, vacuum, tennis rackets, holiday decorations—you name it. There’s really so much going on in this tiny closet. Eeeekkk!

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NM :: Ok, now for the NEAT stuff? What do you think is going to be your favorite part of running NEAT in your city? 

LR :: This is tough to answer! I know I am going to enjoy so much about running NEAT here! Most of all, I’m looking forward to transforming clients spaces so they can live happier, more organized lives.

NM :: What can people expect when they hire you to organize their home? 

LR :: I promise not to judge! I know how difficult creating a neat, organized space can be. I will be patient and work with you, despite how big the task at hand. I’m here to help make life a little bit easier!

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Yay! We are so excited for you Louisa and are thrilled that even more clients in Manhattan will get to experience the NEAT life! We can't wait to see what you do and are proud to have you as part of our NEAT team! 

xx

the NEAT girls

Tuesday 05.09.17

The Top 3 Things Your Mother Really Wants This Year!

The surest way to your mother’s heart is through home organization—trust us, we’re the experts. Below our NEAT SF girl, Lisa Ruff is giving you a few ideas for quick and easy organizing jobs that will make your mom’s heart swoon. Even if you were consistently voted kid with the messiest room, there’s a project below you can tackle for her Mother’s Day gift. 

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Jewelry or Makeup
 
For a luxurious gift, organize her jewelry or makeup. If she has an overwhelming collection, choose one item that she uses everyday like her bracelets or lipsticks. Or take the leap and organize it all.    
 
Acrylic not only elevates the look of makeup and jewelry, but it also makes it easier to find the right lipstick in a pinch. A big budget splurge is Glamboxes. They make beautiful sets or individual pieces for items like clutches, bracelets and makeup. The Container Store also offers many pieces that can give you the same feel at a lesser price point.    
 
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Lunch Prep Drawer
 
One of the unifying laments of parenthood is the tedium of packing school lunches day after day. Why not make the process less painful for the mom in your life? A few easy steps and you’ve made the daily task almost delightful….well, almost ;) 
 
The first step is to inspect all the containers. Are they in good condition? Do they have matching tops? Once you’ve tossed the tired containers with missing parts, sort them by type. Then purchase and implement drawer dividers like these
 
Drawer dividers are a snap to implement. Just make sure the drawer divider accommodates the width of the drawer.    
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Edit Her Closet & Change Out Her Hangers
 
Clear several hours off both your schedules, bring a bottle of wine (or two) and a few boxes of matching hangers. I’ve done this with my mom and I was surprised how happy it made her. Not only are you helping her out with a space she uses everyday, but also you’re giving her your undivided attention. 
 
Help her edit down items that are sad, out of date or ill fitting. Then make piles for “donate,” “consign” and “trash.”  For any items she decides to keep, change out the hanger. When you leave, make sure you take all the donations and trash with you. Besides seeing your smiling face, that’s the best part of the gift because she won’t have to deal with the donation run. 
 

 

We are in LOVE with these ideas and are sure your Mother will be too! Happy Mom's Day to all you hardworking women out there! And thanks to Lisa for such great tips. 

xx

the NEAT girls

Thursday 05.04.17

We've Got This One in the Bag!!

Even if a girl can't be NEAT inside your home, we think it's critical to at least be NEAT inside your bag! Think about it...it's the one thing that goes with you everywhere. Shopping, to the gym, to pick up the kids, etc. So, how great would it be if you had that one bag that could actually keep you organized?!?

This has actually been a point of contention for us as NEAT girls over the years! We've tried several bags both personally and professionally and it wasn't until we came across this one that we took a moment to notice all of the NEAT qualities it had to offer. 

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Please meet our new companion, the Coyn leather tote bag! We are sure you are wondering what exactly sets this bag apart from others?!? We are here to tell you...there's a lot. Not only is it beautifully made, but it also has the perfect amount of internal sections/compartments. Many bags we've tried often times have too many sections that all look the same. Hence, losing everything inside every section! This is one of the first that actually took into consideration making each section size a little different from the other. And...there aren't too many sections, which helps to know which one to designate for what. 

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So, not only does this bag look great and function perfectly, we are also happy to report that this bag has been put to mulitple uses amongst the NEAT girls! From a regular everyday personal tote, to making the perfectly stylish diaper bag...we are just in love with it! It's even joining us at our client's homes full of all the organizing supplies you could imagine (think; label makers, labels, taper measures and notebooks). 

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So, if any of you are in search of a new bag or if you tend to just hoard them for fun, then this one is a must for your wishlist! Just call us to come help make you as organized as possible to fit it in your space! 

xx

the NEAT girls

Thursday 04.27.17

A NEAT Girl’s Guide to Minimalism

Minimalism is often misunderstood, but at its core it is the intentional act of simplifying one’s life. Or in other word's it is music to a NEAT girl's ears! 

What is even better is that it has become super trendy to minimize. With documentary's like Nexflix's Minimalism we are feeling extra inspired these days to declutter our own homes. Our Orlando NEAT girl, Meg, has been particularly motivated and was nice enough to share some images and tips with us of what minimalism looks like in Florida these days.

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TIP #1 :: MINIMIZE your possessions.
Take an honest look at your possessions and part with items you don’t need:

- Clothing you never wear
- Duplicate kitchen items you don’t need
- Travel sized toiletries you never use

Then donate them for a tax break, giveaway to friends, or sell these items on eBay, Letgo or other resale apps for some extra cash.

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TIP #2 :: MAXIMIZE your purchases.
Each time you purchase a new item you should ask yourself: 

- Do I need it?
- Do I love it?
- Do I have anything like it?

TIP #3 :: MINIMIZE your activities.
Minimize the non-essential activities that you don’t enjoy:

- If you dread grocery shopping, perhaps try a service like Blue Apron or Hello Fresh so you only have the food items you need on hand.
- Ask yourself if all of the activities you participate in are still serving you well. If not, it might be time to cleanse the 'ole schedule a bit as well. 

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TIP #4 :: MAXIMIZE your opportunities.
Consider adding an activity, or two, that truly makes you happy:

- Taking a regular workout class
- Going for daily walks
- Joining a gym
- Spending more time with your loved ones

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Who's excited to re-evaluate some things in your life? Thanks Meg for sharing how Orlando is taking minimalism to a whole new level!! 

xx
the NEAT girls

Wednesday 04.19.17

Marissa's Baby Registry Must Haves

Our next NEAT girl to join the crew is expected to arrive in May! This one won't be running one of our cities (just yet ;)) but she will be Owner, Marissa Hagmeyer's, office assistant and first baby.

As Marissa anxiously awaits her arrival we have asked her to let us in on what she is doing to prepare and what the latest registry must haves are for this NEAT baby girl.

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Hi Everyone! I couldn't be more excited to be expecting a baby girl in just a few weeks. The last 9 months have honestly not been too bad in the grand scheme of things - I guess I've had it easy when it comes to pregnancy. Registering on the other hand was a bit more of a challenge for me. First of all I struggle with the whole idea of asking your friends and family for gifts and secondly I wanted to try and avoid having our house be overtaken by baby equipment. 

Overwhelmed by the whole process, I decided to just start by doing a ton of research. I sought a lot of advice from the other NEAT girls, my family and friends, and also read through nearly every page of Lucie's List and Babylist. With my findings in mind I came up with the following must haves ...

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1. It goes without saying that you need a baby carrier but there are so many options out there. The Nuna Pipa felt right for us because it is super lightweight, has a built in sun canopy (FL baby must-have) and can be used without a base when we are traveling.

2. The I Am Tidy book, because who doesn't want to teach their kids about being NEAT from a young age. LOL!

3. A pretty pair of gold Freshly Picked moccasins. Okay these maybe weren't a must have but they sure are cute, right? 

4. The Ergobaby 360 Carrier so that this little lady is able to hit the town with us. 

5. I can't wait to do my first load of baby girl's laundry with The Laundress Baby Detergent. Hopefully it makes the 100th load a little more exciting as well ;).

6. NEAT's favorite velvet slimline hangers in baby size so that I can maximize space in the closet.

7. A montly bow subscription to Little Poppy Co. Okay these too are another just fun to have. 

8. The BabyBjorn Travel Crib because we live far from family so being able to sleep comfortably on the go is going to be important for us.

9. A Sophie the Giraffe Teether seems to make it onto every Mom's registry these days. She apprently is an all in one development toy awakeing each of baby's 5 sense! 

10. It also goes without saying that you will need a stroller. However, there are about 10,000 out there so this was a tough decision. We ultimately picked the UppaBaby Vista because it is lightweight, the bassinet can also be used for an infant sleeper, it can be converted to a double down the road, and becuase it was super easy to maneuver and fold up. 

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With all that being said, I would love to hear from you if there are items I am missing. Leave a note in the comments below if you have any advice for me!

xx
Marissa

Image 1 & 3 :: Photo Credit (Heather Holt Photography)

Wednesday 04.12.17

San Francisco's Favorite Multi-Use Products

As you know, one of our favorite aspects of organizing is implementing new product. The right product elevates the look and functionality of a space. The only thing better than finding the perfect product is finding the perfect product that’s flexible enough to be used in multiple spaces. 

Because our San Francisco organizers purchase the most product each year, we have asked them for the top 3 products that you can use again and again, and here is what they had to say ... 

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Clear Stackable Drawer

The unsung hero of The Container Store is their stackable shoe drawer. They are perfect for overflow bathroom toiletries, office supplies, kids’ art supplies -- the sky’s the limit. You can fully remove the drawers and take it to another room. If something leaks or spills, they just need a quick wipe.

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Letter Collator

Another recent favorite of the San Francisco team is this letter collator. We have been known to take it beyond it's intended office use and instead let it shine in a closet. It is sturdy enough to hold lots of clutches upright and make sure they get the front and center attention that they deserve! 

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Divided Lazy Susan

The divided lazy susan is a gem that is typically stocked in the kitchen section, but we’ve used it in just about every room. The roomy sections are what make it so versatile. It makes an excellent turntable for small hands reaching for art supplies and also shines when organized with medication, first aid or pantry items.

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We think you will agree that there is no lack of creativity in the minds of our San Francisco organizers! 

xx
the NEAT girls

Wednesday 04.05.17

Spring Cleaners We Love!

A freshly cleaned home brings us just about as big of a smile to our face as a newly NEAT home. Are you suprised?

That being said, we are by no means experts when it comes to cleaning. FACT! But we do happen to keep a few close friends who know a thing or two about the subject, and their names just might be ones you recognize!

Today we are sharing our interviews Clean MamaMrs. Meyer's, and Common Good. This is what they had to say about making your 2017 Spring Cleaning Season extra special this year .... 

Spring Cleaning, NEAT Method, Organizing Tips

1. What do you recommend as the first step to getting one's Spring Cleaning started?

Clean Mama :: ​Spring cleaning is different for ​everyone and every home that is in need of a little spring cleaning. My best advice is to capitalize on the urge to do a little spring cleaning if/when it hits. Open those windows, let the fresh air in, and do a little cleaning where your home needs it most. Make a list of a handful of areas or spots in your home that need a little attention and work your way down the list. By starting with a list and a plan you’ll be able to do your spring cleaning in no time!

Mrs. Meyer's :: Before starting any seasonal cleaning project – it’s important to keep in mind the 3 P’s – prioritize, plan and products. Each of us has our own philosophy when it comes to cleaning. For example, our namesake Thelma Meyer’s (yes, there is a real Mrs. Meyer!) believes there’s a happy medium between perfectionism and a happy, "lived in" home. Think about what’s most important to get accomplished during your spring cleaning session and focus effort on those areas. Stick with a plan to avoid being sucked into the rabbit hole of cleaning, such as the simple sock drawer organization that transforms into a whole closet makeover. Lastly, make sure you have the right products on hand to make clean up easier and more enjoyable. For example, Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day products are made with plant-derived ingredients and essential oils that smell great and still work like the dickens.

Common Goods, Spring Cleaning, NEAT Method, Organizing Tips

2. What are your hottest new product(s) this Spring and what should we know about them?

Common Goods :: This Spring, we're very excited to launch our first ever Kickstarter campaign! We've developed a brand-new refill line that delivers 2-4 refills of our hand soap, dish soap, all-purpose cleaner, bathroom cleaner or laundry detergent direct to your door. We've listened to the needs of customers for over six years now and have developed a product that has the same safe and green formulations people love with the added convenience of home delivery. On top of that, our refill boxes use 83% less plastic than the equivalent bottles, and help further our mission to reduce the amount of plastics in the home and eco-system! The campaign starts today and we hope everyone will consider visiting the campaign page to learn more about the product and the fantastic rewards we're offering participants!

Mrs. Meyer's :: We have a little spring in our step with two new fresh seasonal scents Lilac and Peony. The subtle, rosy scent of Peony and rich and vibrant Lilac brings a spritz of spring and freshness to the indoors. Each scent is available in a dish soap, hand soap and multi-surface cleaner for a springier spring clean. We also have a Peony gift set that includes a hand soap and hand lotion as a perfect pick-me-up for the start of the season.

Mrs Meyers, Spring Cleaning, NEAT Method, Organizing Tips

3. In your opinion, what is the NEATest thing about Spring :)?

Clean Mama :: ​Spring cleaning of course! As a midwesterner, spring cleaning - throwing open the windows (and cleaning them) is almost a right of passage into the season of all things new. I absolutely love taking the time to spiff and tidy up in the spring to relax and enjoy the weather and being outside in the summer.

Mrs. Meyer's :: Spring is NEAT because it marks renewal all around us. New blooms and scents awaken our senses and lifts spirits. It’s signal the start of something inspirational and promising for the days ahead.

Clean Mama, Spring Cleaning, NEAT Method, Organizing Tips

4. Anything else you want to share regarding Spring Cleaning?

Mrs. Meyer's :: After you’ve finished giving your home a little TLC – don’t forget about yourself. Mrs. Meyer’s recently launched their latest body care installment, body wash to help you clean up real nice after a spring cleaning session with moisturizing formulas and garden-fresh scents.

Have you added these items to your shopping list yet? Something tells us Spring will be extra special this year if you do! 

xx
the NEAT girls

Thursday 03.30.17

A Spring Break Guide to Disney World!

Orlando, Florida is one of the top tourism destinations in the United States. With Disney World, Universal Studios, Sea World and many more attractions, it’s no wonder why so many families flock to the City Beautiful for vacation.
 
When you’re visiting the most magical place on earth, it’s important to be organized and prepared so you can fully enjoy your time! Here’s a travel guide organized especially for you from the local NEAT girl Meg Wittman ::
 
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"I highly suggest you do your research ahead of time, book hotel & restaurant reservations early and read plenty of “Disney blogs” to get the inside scoop. As an Orlando resident, here are my quick (sometimes overlooked) tips on how to stay NEAT while traveling to Orlando".

Tip #1: Pack these essential items!
 
- Snacks & Water Bottle – save yourself time and money by bringing in your own fruit, snack bars, and refillable water bottles.
- Rechargeable Battery for Phone – make sure your phone has enough charge to utilize the Disney app for park info, show times and fast passes
- Lightweight Rain Coat – you’ll be prepared if it rains or if you end up on Splash Mountain. Nobody wants to walk around soaking wet all day.
- Comfortable shoes – it goes without saying, but with a lot of walking you need to wear some supportive shoes.
- Sunglasses – you’re in the sunshine state after all, so make sure to pack a lightweight pair of inexpensive sunglasses in case they get misplaced
- Sunscreen – similar to sunglasses, if it’s winter where you live you may be shocked just how sunny it gets in Florida. Be prepared with enough SPF.
- Lightweight bag – a backpack or a large cross body bag works really well to hold all your essentials
 
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Tip #2: Plan out your days!
 
- Prioritize & Plan – there’s so much to see at the parks, make sure to prioritize which parks you want to visit and what you want to see while you’re there. You can even book fast passes ahead of time, so it’s important to know what you and your family really want to do, see and experience while at the parks.
- Use your phone calendar – keep track of all important times while you’re on your trip: restaurant reservations, fast pass times, important show times. If you’re in a group, invite the other members so everyone is on the same page. You can even set reminders to keep you on track.
 
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Tip #3: Go with the flow!
 
Being NEAT isn’t about stress, it’s about being as prepared as possible, so you can relax and enjoy your life. Once you’ve done all the research, planning, packing and scheduling… simply have fun, you’re on vacation after all! If you miss one of your fast pass times, no big deal. If you forget to pack something, there are so many places you can purchase necessary items. If your kids want to spend all of their time at the pool and not even go to the park (believe me, it happens) don’t freak out. Enjoy the amazing sunshine with your friends, family and loved ones!
 
xx
our Orlando NEAT girl, Meg
 
Thursday 03.23.17

{Spring}-spiration for Every Room of Your House

Spring brings on the desire to feel refreshed and ready for warmer weather. Not only is it time for spring cleaning to take place, but it's also the perfect time to get yourself reorganized. As some of us await that crisp Sping air...we figured we'd share a little inspiration to get you dreaming of open windows and walks outside again. 

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kitchen organization, kitchen organizing, kitchen inspiration, design ideas, design inspiration, neat spaces, drawer organizing, drawer inserts, utensil drawers, pantry ideas, pantry organization, pasta organizing, beautiful containers, spice jars, etsy ideas, pretty containers

Ashley Hatcher- Washington D.C.

We hope our pics inspired you as much as creating them inspired us! Just think by the time you get your home organized, Spring will be here! Don't forget, you can always call on a NEAT girl to come and complete the job for you! 

xx

the NEAT girls

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Neat Method


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