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Get Organized Now!
Mid-Week Mini Edition

By Maria Gracia
September 27, 2017

  Today's Feature

Just Because You Have Space Doesn't Mean You Need More Stuff

I have a friend who moved into a new house a few years ago. She and her husband had been living in their starter home and had finally decided they were ready to take the equity they had built and invest in a larger home for themselves and their children. Suddenly their modest 1200 square foot home turned into an additional 900 square feet of usable living space. Seems like a great scenario. Who doesn't want more room in their home?

I visited her home a short time after they had moved in. The new home had an additional bedroom, and a lower level family room that their first home did not. I remember thinking how spacious everything seemed, as they had not yet purchased any additional furniture to put into the extra rooms. The living room on the main level was also significantly larger than it had been in their old home and the furniture they had was still reflective of the smaller space that they had previously. I liked how roomy everything seemed and how easy it was to move around the various rooms. The kitchen looked like a model home to me with its huge amount of available counter space and empty walls. The whole house felt completely inviting.

Fast forward to present day. I was invited to my friend's home the other morning for coffee. Because of both of our busy schedules it had been a while since we had gotten together to chat. I was looking forward to seeing what she had done to the interior of her house as it had been a long while since I had visited her at home. As I walked in the front door my initial reaction was total surprise. Was this really the same place?

We started in the kitchen. The first thing I noticed was the countertops. What was once a vast empty work area now looked more like a storage area. Small kitchen appliances and home decor items now covered a vast majority of the counter space. Houseplants covered every square inch of the windowsills. As we moved into the living room I noticed that it seemed more snug than I remembered. Extra tables and chairs had been added to the living space making the room seem considerably smaller. What happened?

In her defense, this is a common occurrence. We start to feel cramped and so we long for more living space. We get more living space so then we tend to get more stuff. The stuff begins to accumulate so then we start to feel cramped.

Do you see where I am going with this? This cycle could take us into the world's largest mansion packed full of everything under the sun if our checkbooks would allow us to. You buy a couch. Now you need a coffee table and end tables to accompany the couch. The tables now need centerpieces and/or lamps. You need accent pieces to pull the room together. How about some storage baskets for all your books...and shelves for your trinkets? Where does it all end?

In fact, during our coffee conversation, she said, 'We're thinking of moving. I think we've run out of space again!'

Sometimes, it's important to take a step back. Just because we have the room doesn't necessarily mean we need to fill it. Enjoy the empty space that you may have.

If you were getting by before with only one recliner in your old living room that doesn't mean you now need four huge recliners because the room you have is bigger.

Just because you have more space, that doesn't warrant accumulating new stuff until you've run out of space, yet again. Your house is a house...not a warehouse or storage facility.

And, when you're feeling so cramped, you're thinking of renting outside storage space or moving, chances are, you just need to begin getting rid of your clutter. Trust me...this is almost always the answer to a cluttered, cramped space.

Having a bigger room with less stuff packed into it will make your home seem more spacious, which is the feel most folks are after. Allow yourself some extra walking room. Don't feel the need to fill every single corner, nook, and cranny. Leave some wall space bare. Embrace the empty areas, rather than hiding them.

Less can definitely be more.

P.S. Speaking of being organized, my Goodbye Clutter resource includes information on banishing the 4 different categories of clutter: physical clutter, paper clutter, digital clutter AND emotional clutter. Our customers are raving about it. Visit:

All the details are further down in this issue, including how you can get your hands on a bundle of complimentary bonuses, but only until Monday, October 2nd. Scroll down to the bottom of this issue for full details.

  Ask Maria

Sweet, Musty Odor in My House...Help!

A GON Reader Asks

--I have an odor in my house I cannot find. It is sweet, musty smell. I have searched every nook and cranny. I have scrubbed the top of door sills and floors. I have washed every curtain and every sheet and blanket, I have had the carpet cleaned. Any suggestions? I need help!

--Pamela Fowler, Redding, CA (Wife, Mother, Grandmother of three, educator of 20 years.)

Maria Gracia Responds

Hi Pamela,

Thank you for asking. I know how annoying strange odors can be, because you often have to be Sherlock Holmes to find them. Here are some possibilities:

1) Is the odor stronger in some rooms than others? If you can try to pinpoint the location better, it's going to be easier for you to zone in on the cause.

2) Perhaps you have something organic in your house that is decomposing. Check your fridge and pantry.

3) Some molds give off a slightly sweet smell at first. If you don't see any mold and you can't tell where it's originating, look up 'mold specialist' in your area and have one of their reps come check it out.'

4) Pitch any cardboard boxes. They may be infested with something. In fact, just to be safe, never store anything for long periods of time in cardboard.

5) Do you have any houseplants? If so, check the dirt they're growing in to determine if the smell is strong.

6) Have you checked around for wasp and honey bee nests, as a possible cause? I also read that bat infestations in attics and such could produce a syrupy-sweet odor, especically on humid days.

7) How old is your house? I know a family who was dealing with something similar, and once they had their cedar roof removed and replaced their roofing shingles, the odor went away. Cedar can give off a very sweet smell sometimes.

8) You probably haven't been running your heater, but rust, when exposed to heat, sometimes emits a sweet, metallic smell.

9) Is the smell strong around your garbage disposal? If so, it may need to be cleaned out.

10) I remember, when my daughter was toddler age, she used to leave her sippy cups, filled with formula, here, there, and everywhere. Once day, there was a sickly sweet smell in my bedroom. After searching everywhere, I finally found the culprit...a sippy cup filled with formula, way under the bed, that was probably there for a month or more! So, if you have young kids in your house, or pets, check under furniture!

I'm not sure if any of these are the cause of the odor in your house, but hopefully it gives you some ideas of what it might be. Maybe our GON readers have some more ideas (if so, please reply to this email.)

Good luck...I hope you find it!


  New on our Web Site!

Statistics: Overloaded with catalog clutter? Here's help!

Article: 5 simple ways to organize each day

Dirty Little Secret 1: Hate paying bills? Me too! But it's not as bad when you do this...

Dirty Little Secret 2: Find out how I get school lunch packed and prepped quickly and easily...

Dirty Little Secret 3: Are you struggling to clean your indoor grill? Here's a way to do so fast and without tons work...

Storage: Give used up candle jars a second life

Mini Challenges: If you've been living in disorganization and chaos for awhile, it's a great time to take some steps to lead you into a more organized world. Here are 5 mini challenges this week to help you do that.

In ADDITION, on our home page, you'll also find lots of NEW and featured STUFF including...

Social Media Spotlight: Easy glitter's a little-known secret!

Coffee: Guess what percentage of people in the world drink coffee, and how much do they drink?! Then, visit our home page to learn the facts

September Checklist: Autumn is the perfect time of year to turn over a new leaf and get organized.

Theme of the Week: Consistency. Enjoy our home page quotes, that reflect our theme, for added inspiration and motivation this week

  In Closing

We can fill our lives with stuff, but as we do we're concurrently filling our lives with the obligation to maintain that stuff.
---Craig D. Lounsbrough

I'd love to hear from you.
Comments, suggestions, or just to say hello. Just REPLY to this email with a short note.

And remember...Being organized creates a happier, healthier, more fulfilling life!


Maria Gracia
Get Organized Now!

This is the end of our
Regular Newsletter Content
If you'd like to learn more about
Today's Special, Gotta Have Resource
you will find that information below.

  Special 'Gotta Have' Resource


My Most Complete, Easy-to-Use, and Effective
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For super quick details on how you can say goodbye to clutter, visit:

All people have clutter to some degree.

You may have a little bit of clutter sitting around--things that aren't really serving any purpose, taking up unnecessary space, gathering dust, and causing a bit of frustration.

Or perhaps you have LOADS of clutter and it's causing your life to be turned upside down--you can't find things easily, you feel like your home is bursting at the seams with STUFF, you have to climb over piles and boxes to get to anything, and you feel overwhelmed and frustrated.

MOST people are somewhere right in the middle of these two situations.

For anyone who just has a little bit of clutter, have no doubt in your mind that CLUTTER GROWS, and small challenges soon turn into large issues.

BUT, here's something NEW I discovered...

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Clutter actually invades your life in FOUR forms...

1. Physical Clutter
2. Paper Clutter
3. Digital Clutter
4. Emotional Clutter

And once it's there, it begins to wreak all sorts of havoc...

In fact, to discover the 12 Ways that Clutter Robs you of a Happier Life visit:

Before you know it, your current clutter is breeding more clutter. And, most importantly...

Clutter never disappears all by itself

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* 'Goodbye Clutter" Daily Motivational Quotations

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How to Use This Newsletter

In this newsletter, you will find stories, ideas, inspiration, links and more to help you live a less stressful, more organized, more fulfilling life. We encourage you to apply these ideas to your own life AND share them liberally with your family, friends, and fan base via email, on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, other social media outlets, and in person, of course!

When you share, please mention my name and web site - Maria Gracia - as the source.

Thank you for helping to spread the gift of organizing far and wide! -- Maria

(c) Copyright 2017 by Maria Gracia, Get Organized Now!

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-- Maria Gracia