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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 18: Put a blazer into the thrift store box. It’s a well-made wool blazer, but its cut is simply out of style and I don’t know when it’ll come back in style. I’m no fashionista, but in addition to being outdated, it’s also a little big for me.

Day 19: Manhandled my office bifold closet door to obtain the big Rubbermaid box filled with more photographs that I need to send to ScanCafe. Spent another 10 minutes trying to figure out how to repair the bifold closet doors so they both actually open and close. I hate those closet doors.

Day 20: Shredded documents like an Enron accountant, only with less desperation.

Day 21: Really started to dig into the photo box retrieved on Day 19. Remembered why every time I start to sort through this box, I quickly put the top back on and put it back in the closet. It contains everything from old photographs of family members I don’t remember to vacation photos from the late 1990s.

Day 22: I actually made headway on the box of photos, sorting out duplicates and choosing the best copies to send off for scanning.

Day 23: Finally bought the faucet, toilet paper holder and towel ring to go in the remodeled downstairs bathroom. This is why people buy new houses.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

I was out of town on Days 15 and 16, but I’m happy to say that within two hours of returning home on Day 17, I had completely unpacked the suitcase and put it back in its proper storage place. This level of post-vacation organization is simply unheard of here.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 13: Reorganized a particularly troublesome kitchen cabinet area. My house in Mobile, Alabama, had laughably little cabinet space, so I’m still getting used to maximizing the larger space I have now. I have this obsessive desire to keep all the baking items (mixer, cake pans, muffin tins, etc.) close together, but that just doesn’t work. I accept this limitation, and now I can reach the small loaf pans without interference.

Day 14: Cleaned out a box of hair accessories that was mysteriously stored in the nightstand in the guest room. Discovered that elasticized hair bands deteriorate and lose their stretch when stored in stupid places for long periods of time.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 11: You would think that being trapped in the house by snow and ice would provide the perfect opportunity to organize, sort and clean. You would be wrong.

I managed to figure out the state of several magazine subscriptions, however, so we’re in no danger of losing our monthly/weekly music/technology/cooking news fix. Note: Print is not dead yet.

Day 12: Third snow day of the week. I managed to help some class handouts that had been taken out of their notebooks find their way home. With a high of 25 degrees, that was really all that anyone could expect of me.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 10: Cleaned off the filing cabinets next to my desk, because old New Yorkers deserve a proper burial after they’ve done their duty.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 8: I have this bad habit of decluttering and then leaving the box of decluttered items in the house for weeks, turning it into clutter.

But not this time. I brought last week’s New Year decluttering remnants to the New Leash on Life Marketplace this afternoon. They can sell it faster, and I have a cleaner home office sooner.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 7: You can see why I had to have the Stack. Look at this perfect pyramid of wine.

Because I’m storing the wine in the pantry, I’m getting twice as much work out of the Stack, using the two halves of the device to secure two wine stacks against two cabinet walls. Better utilization of the pantry space enabled me to liberate four forgotten bottles of wine from the stairwell closet today, which led to all sorts of afternoon organizational maneuvers.

The Stack appears to have originated from an Australian company called Make My Day.

The Stack in its original packaging.

Electric Reindeer, proof that I will bring cheap, hilariously named wine to your party.

Two halves of the Stack.

 

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 6: I decimated a pile of travel magazines taking up space in my home office. The recycling bin is going to be heavy next week.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 4 saw the decluttering of one small shelf. Baby steps, people.

Part of Day 5 was spent waiting on the contractors to install a granite countertop in the downstairs bathroom, and the rest of it was spent obsessing about said installation and trying to pick out a faucet. Home improvement: It counts.

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The “Do One Thing” series chronicles my yearlong effort to tackle one project every day to organize my life and home.

Day 2: I labored over whether I should include purchases in this challenge. As the sole board member, I voted “yes.”

When we were in New York City in early December, I saw this nifty little device in Pylones that allows you to stack up to 10 bottles of wine safely and efficiently. I realize that other people have wine racks on their countertops and walls and even on top of their kitchen cabinets, but proper wine storage demands protection from light and temperature variations. Thus, most of our everyday wine (“everyday wine” … we sound so sophisticated) is stored in the bottom of the pantry, far away from the stove and other sources of heat.

The bottles, however, tend to arrange themselves in a mishmash, no matter how carefully they’re initially placed. Any stacking at all requires something extremely heavy and unneeded to prevent rolling, and unstacked bottles rolling around on their sides waste a tremendous amount of vertical cabinet space.

Thus, when I saw the incredibly neat pyramid of wine bottles enabled by the Wine Stack, I pointed it out as just the thing we needed to fix the wine problem back home. My husband looked at it and declared that we would definitely figure something out when we got back.

I should have picked up the Wine Stack and carried it to the register, but what I didn’t realize at the time (yep, still learning after 15 years) was that his comment could be translated as follows: “I do not recognize this wine problem you describe; therefore, I shall forget this discussion in approximately 3 minutes.”

So, when I was trying to put the pantry in order last week after a round of holiday baking, I mentioned this solution we were going to figure out. The husband paused for a couple of seconds, and said, “I guess we should have bought one of those wine things while we were in New York.”

Sigh.

I ordered my Wine Stack on Sunday night, and I’m counting it as my second Do One Thing act of the year.

Day 3: I cleared off the piano bench, a hotspot for downstairs junk like books, magazines, gloves and scarves. Every house has a spot like this. Of course, now that I’ve swept it clean, I need to maintain a subresolution of keeping it clean.

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