Find it Fast: Make a Household Storage Plan
Make a plan for household storage
Cynthia Ewer February 8, 2022

It's here ... somewhere.

Living in close proximity with our possessions means we can't always find the things we need, when we need them. Disorganized, crowded storage spaces make it hard to decorate for holidays, make up a guest bedroom, or find the right tool for the job.

Chill Out! Cut Energy Use in Refrigerator and Freezer
Cut Energy Use
Cynthia Ewer January 30, 2022

With power bills on the rise--and hot weather just around the corner--it's time for an energy-saving tune up for your refrigerator and freezer.

Keeping food fresh while conserving energy can bring a helpful boost to the strained food budget.

Try these tips to minimize energy use and save money on groceries.

Fill the freezer, but give the fridge some air

The freezer works most efficiently when packed as full as possible. Need to fill in some space? Tuck extra ice for cold drinks or cold-packs for summer picnics into any empty space in the freezer.

Clean House! Speed Cleaning Tips from Pro Cleaners
Cleaning tips from professional cleaners
Cynthia Ewer January 17, 2022

Paid cleaning help can be a wonderful short-cut to a clean and organized home--if the household budget can stand the cost. But what do you do if the Prize Patrol bypassed your door this year?

Take a speed-cleaning lesson from the pros! Paid cleaning services are masters of the art of speedy, efficient cleaning. Watch professional cleaners at work: they don't waste time, cut corners or dawdle over the job--and they know how to clean fast, clean right.

Organized Pantry: Beginner's Guide to Pantry Pride
organize the pantry
Cynthia Ewer January 14, 2022

A working pantry? It's the secret weapon of a well-organized kitchen. 

A planned reserve of foodstuffs and sundries used in the home, a pantry saves time, money and stress in the kitchen. Tap the pantry for unexpected meals and reduce trips to the supermarket.  Stock it with frugal finds to lower grocery costs. Set aside a supply of food and sundries for a rainy day and protect your family against weather emergencies or financial dislocation. 

Properly managed, the pantry is an integral part of an organized home. Polish your pantry pride with our best hints and tips.

Online Subscription Not What You Ordered? You May Be A Victim Of Dark Patterns
Dark Patterns:  Malicious Web Site Design
Cynthia Ewer January 13, 2022

Is a company--for me, it's iStockphoto--telling you signed up for a service or subscription ... when you're sure you didn't?  That business may be using "dark patterns":  the manipulation of Web site design to create confusion and influence user behavior.  

Holiday Clean Up: Clutter Cutting Ideas for Year's End
Clean clutter after the new year
Cynthia Ewer January 3, 2022

Even in the midst of holiday cheer, it's time to look ahead to a clean and organized New Year--if you can see it, over the clutter of Christmas Past.

Ready to swing into the coming year from a clutter-free home? Try these year-end tips to cut clutter and start the New Year on an organized note.

Low-Cost, No-Cost Ways To Celebrate Christmas with Kids
Celebrate with kids
Cynthia Ewer December 1, 2021

Cutting costs at Christmas doesn't mean celebrating like Scrooge. It's not about what you buy--it's about what you do! 

Putting "celebration" at the center of the season--and taking the focus off of gifts and giving--can be the key to happy holidays that don't break the bank.

Better, when it comes to kids and Christmas, cheap is good! Simple, inexpensive family activities can be as meaningful as pricey Nutcracker tickets--and no need for scratchy dresses or dress-up suits. 

Try these no-cost, low-cost ways to celebrate the holiday season with kids:

Do Less, Enjoy More: Simplify Holiday Traditions
Simplify holiday traditions
Cynthia Ewer November 28, 2021

"Tradition" is a powerful force that sometimes pulls an unsuspecting family along in its wake. Do your holiday traditions serve your family, your values and your spiritual beliefs--or are you running a tired and joyless circle during the holiday season in the name of tradition?

To cut stress during the season, it's time to give your family's holiday traditions a stiff scrutiny.  Today, think back to traditions from season's past, with an eye to trimming them.

Save on Decor: Frugal Holiday Decorating Tips
Frugal ideas for holiday decorating
Cynthia Ewer November 22, 2021

Nothing says "Christmas!" like a beautifully decorated home. Fragrant greens, twinkling lights, holiday centerpieces all set the stage for a merry holiday season.

But at what cost? 

If you believe catalog vendors, department stores and florists, be prepared to lay down a bundle to create that holiday home. Each year sees a set of new colors, new images, new trends, all designed to part you from your holiday dollars.