Hoarders

A & E's  “Hoarders” (premieres tonight at 10 pm) explores the world of extreme hoarding; a mental disorder marked by an obsessive need to collect things, even if the items are worthless, hazardous or unsanitary. The series takes a fascinating look at the lives of people whose inability to part with their belongings is so out of control that they are on the verge of a personal crisis.  Whether they’re facing eviction, the loss of their children, jail time, or divorce, they are all desperately in need of help.  The series captures the drama as experts work to put each hoarder on the road to recovery.

One of the show's Disorganization Sepcialist,s Geralin Thomas, had advice for getting ahead of your clutter.

ACTION AREAS:   PILLOWS, STUFFED ANIMALS, UPHOLSTERY

WHY:  bed bugs/dust mites/allergies
Clean or replace 'dust magnets'  on years ending with 5 and 0.
For example,  in 2010, which ends in a ZERO, throw away or replace all your bed pillows, mattress covers, stuffed animals.
If you can't afford new ones, freeze them for a few days in a trash bag/freezer to kill dust mites and wash in hot water.
Have your draperies and upholstery cleaned.

ACTION AREA:  FRIDGE

WHY:  safety
Every Monday, prior to watching Hoarders, clean your fridge like I do with my clients on Hoarders.
Start at the upper left shelf and go from left to right.
Top to bottom.
Just like you read a book.
Dispose of any expired old foods.
Also, for safety sake, make sure your fridge is at 40 degrees.

ACTION AREA:  CABINETS

WHY:  TOO MANY "WIDOWS" (CONTAINERS W/O LIDS OR LIDS W/O CONTAINERS)
Store leftovers in see-thru food storage containers w/ snap on lids.
The lids attach to the bottom of the containers so there is no HOARDING of lids and containers when you open the cabinet.
 
ACTION:  LAUNDRY

WHY:  save money and time
Ever wonder what every parent has in common with most hoarders?  Tons of LAUNDRY!
One of my suggestions is to develop a system for hand-me-downs or look-alikes (like white socks)
Simple solution:  dots!
First born gets 1 dot w/ Permanent Marker (on socks, t-shirt, underwear, mittens, boots)
When it no longer fits, it gets passed down to the 2nd born and you add another dot. 
Now the garment has 2 dots (2nd born)
Same thing when it makes it the 3rd born.  3 dots.

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