November, 2011 browsing by month


Product Review: Life Facts Book

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Get your Really Important Stuff together before “It” happens.

Recently I met with two ladies who are on a mission. Mary Greenlee and Lorie Copeland have just put the finishing touches on their Life Facts Book. Their mission:

To inspire you to organize and make accessible the facts of your life!

Mary’s husband, an attorney, passed away within a week of being diagnosed with a fatal condition.  His legal affairs were in order, however, Mary did not know where to find all of the financial accounts, passwords, and business records she needed to process her husband’s estate. That experience gave rise to Mary’s desire to develop an easy-to-follow outline that others could use to avoid the kind of challenges she faced in the unexpected transition time!

This notebook is for you if you have needed information in times of crisis or emergency and thought “Why didn’t I prepare earlier so I can easily find the important papers I need?”

I love that Mary and Lorie have divided the Life Facts Book into bite-sized chunks of vital information that you can gather one piece at a time. The 100+ page notebook includes helpful hints for finding and recording personal, medical, financial, and end of life information.

There are over 40 master pages that you can duplicate as needed for each household member such as: medication/supplement chart, surgical history, pet history, advanced health directives, investment portfolio, and household inventory.

Can you imagine having all of your vital information identified in one place, ready to reference when moving, being in a weather crisis, retiring, divorcing, or experiencing major illness? Priceless!  This product is definitely worth the asking price of $40.

Order a Life Facts Book online for you and one for a friend today!

Feel free to contact Mary or Lori through their website

Product Review: Holiday Planning Tool

Friday, November 25th, 2011

Can you believe it is already the 26th of November?  There are only 29 days ’til Christmas!

OK, it’s time to decide how you will celebrate the religious holiday you embrace this season. Once you have several (no more than 3!) preferred activities in mind, you can begin to plan on menus, invitations, and gifts.

I love making lists, getting my ideas on paper. I simply refuse to try to juggle a myriad of details in my brain.

That’s why I love the ready-made lists that are available for a $20 yearly charge at!  I have the professional membership so I can share pertinent lists with my clients.

You may choose to instantly download ListPlanIt’s Holiday ePlanner for just $7!  These are a few of the lists you will be able to access:

  • Card lists & planners
  • Address book
  • Gift/Wish lists
  • Holiday party planning pages
  • Holiday meal planning pages
  • Daily, Weekly, Monthly calendars & to do lists
  • Advent planning pages

Sometimes the lists remind me of something I had not thought of. Have fun making your lists and getting a head start on fun and relaxing holidays!

Six weeks and counting…

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

We are entering that transition from Fall to Winter; Halloween/Thanksgiving to Christmas.

Of course, retail stores, radio stations, and television commercials feature a conglomeration of every possible seasonal or holiday advantage.

My top 10 suggestions for the next couple of weeks to keep it fun instead of hectic:

  • Make a lunch date and invest your time with a good friend.
  • Change out your fire alarm batteries now and on Mother’s Day (two “thank you” holidays)
  • Buy an orange 22 quart plastic tote to store the fall décor you take down.
  • Update your holiday card address list. Mail cards early.
  • Choose a craft or baking activity to share with the children in your life.
  • Order a turkey or spiral ham rather than cook on the BIG day.
  • Purchase some toys to donate to a shelter, Toys for Tots, or Angel Tree.
  • Call someone you haven’t heard from in a long time.
  • Rent a couple of movies for an In-House movie night with popcorn.
  • Buy a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle to put together during family visits.

Life is too short to stress yourself out by building unrealistic expectations into one or two days of the year.

With you in keeping it S-I-M-P-L-E!

Christmas presents for Grandma – start now!

Thursday, November 10th, 2011

Wow! Can you believe it is already November? This is a good time to decide on what to get for extended family members.

Grandmas are really rather easy to buy for. Anything that will remind us daily of our wonderful grandchildren is always welcome! These are two gifts that easily fit that category.

Click image for larger view

Lil Davinci® 85 x11 Art Gallery
Grandma will be ready to frame anything the kids draw on an 8 1/2 x 11 piece of paper.
Includes 4 – 8.5 x 11 Kid’s Art Frames, wall mounting hardware, table stand, and template. Available in black, cherry, or white finish.

Click image for larger view

“My Grandchildren” Calendar
Make a 2012 Calendar from for Grandma from this year’s photos.
Do it yourself using or ask a Heritage Makers consultant to do it for you!

Ready, Set, Share!

Monday, November 7th, 2011

I had a wonderful time recently with 6 gals and 1 guy in my photo organizing workshop at Westerville Senior Center. It seemed fitting as we sorted memories that we met at the Everal Homestead in Heritage Park. What a beautiful facility!

As a group, we commiserated that we have more photos than we know what to do with. When I asked these questions to determine “Why photo organizing?” the group had some great answers! You have to laugh when the person sitting next to you says what you are thinking.

“What you don’t want?”

  • A hodge-podge of boxes and bins full of photos in closet, attic, or basement
  • Precious memories being eroded by those very popular, but acidic, sticky photo albums
  • Photos of vacations that your parents took with their friends
  • Not being able to find that picture you know you have when you need it
  • Blurry, dark or otherwise meaningless photos that you should have pitched 15 years ago

“What you do want?”

  • Less volume, more quality photos by choice
  • A definite order in place so you can find photos you love
  • Ability to easily share memories with friends and family
  • Know what your options are for storage and sharing photos, both physically or digitally

My next question was “Can you actually get there from here?” and the answer is: Definitely! These are the steps we practiced in the workshop.

  1. Gather all your containers of photos in one place.
  2. Choose 5-10 categories that most of your photos will fit into. For example – Travel, Friends, Church Folk, Family History, Childhood, Holidays, Work Life. Write each category on a sticky note or 3 x 5 card.
  3. Sort photos into your categories. (Attaching your titles to shoebox-sized Sterilite bins will work for this task, $1 at Odd Lots or Target.) Use rubber bands if necessary to keep specific events, dated pics together. Discard all duds, photo developing envelopes, and negatives. Keep the memories.
  4. Decide on a format for long term storage or sharing – archival quality album sleeves, scrapbooking, converting to digital on CD/DVD, archival boxes, etc.

Now you are ready to actually DO something with your photos. Here are your choices:

  • If you have lots of time, make the album, scrapbook, or CD.
  • If you have more money than time, hire someone else to do it.

If you have neither money nor time to spare, organize your categories into archival photo boxes (the modern version of a shoebox) and leave it for someone else to do when you are gone.

Whichever you choose, rejoice that you know where to find what you need and can share one box (album, scrapbook, or CD) at a time with friends and family!

Time Management : The Power Hour

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

A time management tool I have heard bandied about lately is the “power hour.” The idea is to decide on one essential task you must get done and set a timer for one hour.

Take phones off hooks or turn down the ringer sound, don’t check email or texts, get a drink and go to the bathroom before your hour starts. Then use that hour to take a huge bite out of that task.
This works for me. I do my best thinking when I am immersed in a project. I feel like I am diving deep under the surface and don’t even come up for air.

These are two of the timing tools I like best:

Click the image for a larger view - App

Focus Booster– a free app that you download, then use as a timer on your computer. Note: when setting the time, moving the cursor to the right adds time, moving to the left gives less time.

Click the image for a larger view - Digital Hourglass Timer by Polder

Digital Hourglass Timer by Polder – This is a funky clock and timer with digital “sand” timing up to 99 minutes. Useful when you are working around the house, or as a limiting factor in meetings or workshops! Also available at selected Target stores.

Try the “power hour” with one of these or any timer you have on hand. See if it works for you. You may need some background noise if you are more of an auditory, sensing type.

If an hour is too long, start with 10 minutes of concentrated effort and lengthen the interval as you get more comfortable.

Now is also a good time to use your “power hour” to start on that thing you have been putting off for forever!