10 Tips to Organize a Kid’s Room

10 Tips to Organize a Kid's RoomA child’s bedroom can be their sanctuary but it can also be a very messy and disorganized room. Through the ages, parents have told their children — “Clean your room!” But how can you truly organize a kid’s room and keep it organized?

Start Organization Training Early

The best thing to do is to start by teaching the child at an early age to be organized.  When the child is a toddler, make organizing their bedroom into a room cleaning game. Toddlers enjoy being helpful. Give the toddlers tasks that they like doing and it will make doing them fun. As the child gets older, give them a responsibility for picking up their toys or making their bed every day. They will feel accomplished when they complete their daily tasks. Create a weekly reward system for these takes and as the months go along, add more tasks to the list. For 9 to 12 year olds, teach specific organization skills such as filing away school papers or even doing their own laundry. Let them create their own routine. If you set these rules early, then as the child grows into their teen years, they will hopefully continue to keep their rooms organized.

Easy Tips to Organize a Child’s Room         

If you haven’t started with an organization plan when the child is very young, then you will need some tips to help you organize your kid’s bedroom.  It’s never too late to start the process! The following tips will help you get this project started and keep the room organized down the road.

1. Look at the room from a child’s point of view. Sit on the floor and do a good assessment of the room from the children’s level. Adult storage solutions will not work for children. Remove closet doors, so little ones do not get fingers stuck. Lower the closet rods and invest in child-size hangers so children can hang up their own clothes.

2. Create zones within the bedroom for toys, crafts and books. As the child gets older, add a desk to the room for homework.

3. Allow the child to be involved in the organization process. Make it a learning experience for them. Let them help decide where things should go in the room and what type (and color) storage solutions would work for their room.

4. Sort through the clothes, toys and books in the room. When a child has grown out of clothes donate or share them. Do not keep them in the room, because they are taking up vital storage space! Have the child help sort through toys they don’t play with anymore or have outgrown and ask them if it is okay to donate or share their toys with another family.

5. Organize the room from the bottom up. Place toys the child uses the most on the bottom shelf of a shelving unit with the higher shelves used for less frequently used items.

6. Plastic bins are perfect for toy storage. Place the toys in plastic bins at floor level so the child can reach them and can see what is in the bin. Keep like toys or books together such as trains and track in one bin and action figures in another bin. If the toy is made up of many smaller pieces, place these items in a smaller plastic box.

7. Label everything in the room! For young children, use pictures of the items placed on bins where they are to be stored. As the child gets older replace the pictures with words and sentences that will help their reading skills.

8. Organize the desk in the room. Have specific homes for pens, pencils, markers and paper. Have folders and binders for a child’s school papers. As the child gets older, introduce a filing cabinet or drawer filing system for school papers and projects.

9. Utilize walls to hang items such as shelving or a stuffed animal hammock. It gets the items off the floor and is much more organized. Just make sure that the child can reach the shelving if they need items.

10. Create a maintenance routine or schedule to keep the room organized. Go through toys and clothes every 6 months to see what to keep and what to donate, throw away or place in storage.

Celebrate Earth Day in Baltimore, Washington D.C. and Northern Virginia

Celebrate Earth Day in Washington DC, Baltimore and Northern Virginia

 

 

Earth Day is April 22nd. It was created in 1970 by Senator Gaylord Nelson to promote the ideas of ecology and encourage respect for the earth by shining a spotlight on soil, water and air pollution. Today, Earth Day has become a celebration of Mother Nature, “green” and sustainable technology and how to protect our national resources. There are many Earth Day activities in the Baltimore, Washington D.C. and Northern Virginia areas.

 

Baltimore Earth Day Events

Each year during the week of Earth Day, the city of Baltimore hosts Baltimore Green Week. This year, the festivities run from April 18th to 26th at venues throughout Baltimore. Baltimore Green Week consists of a week-long series of programs spotlighting environmental awareness and learning about the newest and best sustainable practices. There are workshops, seminars, hands-on projects (such as clean-up projects), and volunteering opportunities during the week.  The highlight of Baltimore Green Week is the EcoFest, which is held Saturday, April 26th at Druid Park. EcoFest has a Bluegrass music festival, bike safety tips, scavenger hunt, yoga classes, a kid’s play area, food tasting (from Whole Foods) and much more. There are over 100 vendors who help and promote a green culture.

 

Washington D.C. Earth Day Activities

Washington D.C. is hosting many Earth Day activities. Union Station  near the Capital Building in Washington D.C has a month-long celebration for Earth Day called “Celebration of Sustainability”, with special events held April 21st to 23rd. The Earth Day event features interactive eco-friendly experiences to raise awareness of environmental issues and encourage sustainability. The event is sponsored by NASA and hosted by the Earth Day Network. There will be scientists and astronauts from NASA as well as representatives from Amtrak, Washington Gas Energy Services, Human Rights Campaign and NOAA. The National Zoo will be having special Earth Day focused activities for the entire family. The activities focus on green-themed crafts that promote an environmentally friendly lifestyle. The United States Botanical Garden, located on the National Mall, has cooking with seasonal produce demonstrations and seminars from representatives of environmental organizations from around the area.

 

Northern Virginia Earth Day Events

Alexandria, Virginia hosts its Earth Day Celebration on Saturday, April 26th at Ben Brenman Park with educational exhibits, demonstrations, hands-on activities, a tree sale, entertainment and more for the entire family.

 

ezStorage Supports Being Green

ezStorage is proud to be a part of the “green” and sustainable movement in the self storage industry. The latest two ezStorage facilities in the Baltimore area are LEED certified. Elkridge and Charles Village are “green” facilities. They received their LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certifications after passing a very tough certification process. The locations utilize LED energy-efficient lighting, use native plants in the landscaping around the buildings, use reflective roof membranes and are water, waste and energy-efficient.

Do your part this Earth Day by just doing simple things to help out the environment like recycling, repurposing and reusing boxes, bottles, cans, and other items and properly disposing of computers, cell phone batteries and other electronic items.

 

Easter Events in Washington D.C. and Baltimore Areas

White House Easter Egg Roll

 

 

The Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas play host to many events from Easter egg hunts and rolls, special sunrise services to brunches and breakfasts with the Easter Bunny. With Easter being later this year, the spring flowers and trees should be in bloom and the temperature should be perfect for outdoor events.

Baltimore Area Easter Events

There are quite a few family friendly Easter events in the Baltimore area taking place this weekend. Every spring for the last 18 years, Butler’s Orchard in Germantown, Maryland has held “Bunnyland”, a spring festival with hayrides, egg hunts, a children’s play area, pony rides, face painting, food, and baby animals. The festival opened April 12th and runs through April 27th, but is closed on Easter Day. The Maryland Zoo at Druid Park has Mary Sue Candies Bunny Bonazoo on April 18th to 20th.  This family fun event has games, crafts, free Easter egg hunts, live entertainment and of course, the zoo animals. The B & O Railroad Museum has a Bunny Breakfast and Train Ride on April 18th and 19th. Many restaurants in the area will be having special Easter brunches. Make your reservations now via OpenTable.com . You can also attend Easter Brunch cruises in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.

Washington D.C. Easter Events

Washington D.C. plays host to many big Easter events every year. The museums along the National Mall are all open on Easter as is Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens, the National Zoo and The National Archives. There are two major sunrise services that take place at famous landmarks in Washington D.C. Easter morning. At 6:30am, thousands of people gather at the Lincoln Memorial for an inspirational service. The annual Easter Sunrise Service at Arlington Cemetery will take place starting at 6:15am at the Memorial Amphitheater. The event is hosted by the US Army Military District of Washington D.C. The non-denominational service includes the United States Army Band. There are many restaurants in the district that will be offering Easter Brunch.

The two major Easter events actually take place on Easter Monday: The White House Egg Roll and the African American Family Celebration at the National Zoo. The National Zoo will have special family focused activities and entertainment for the African American Family Celebration including African storytelling, gospel choirs, reggae bands and more. There will also be an Easter egg hunt, crafts and animal demonstrations throughout the day. The White House Egg Roll is the longest running held annual presidential tradition. The egg rolls started during the Lincoln presidency, but were not made official until 1878 by President Rutherford B. Hayes.  The White House Egg Rolls were cancelled during World War I and II, but re-introduced in the early 1950’s and has been getting bigger every year since. The first family is the host of the event. Over 30,000 people are expected to gather on the South Lawn of the White House for this year’s Easter games. The theme of this year’s egg roll is “Hop into Healthy, Swing into Shape”. There will be special music performances, celebrities including Jim Carrey and Cookie Monster, storytelling, cooking stations and sporting courts.
Happy Easter from ezStorage!

Ultimate College Moving and College Storage Guide

The end of the spring semester is a stressful time for college students as they take exams, set up internships or get ready for graduation. The last week of the semester is full of taking finals, saying goodbye to friends and packing up the dorm room or college apartment to move back home for the summer.

According to the 2014 NRF Back to School Survey, 25% of college-aged students live on campus and they start off the school year with the dorm basics like a mini-fridge, computer/printer and a shower caddy. The average dorm room is 200 square feet, which will probably be shared with a roommate. That definitely does not leave a lot of room for the stuff that students accumulate throughout the school year such as memorabilia, laundry, books, kitchen items, more furniture and more electronics. Where will students store all of their stuff during the summer months?

ezStorage has created the Ultimate College Moving Guide to help students pack up their dorm rooms or college apartments for the summer months.  The guide has specific packing tips for books, dishes, clothes and linens. The guide also shares tips on what can be placed easily in a storage unit versus items that should be taken home over the summer months.

In conjunction with the Ultimate College Moving Guide, ezStorage is excited to launch our money-saving college special, “You Got Stuff. We Have Storage.”  This special promotion began April 1st and runs through June 30th.  College students and faculty can store their college stuff at their local ezStorage facility and receive the 1st month’s rent free, a free 2GB USB drive and 10% off the monthly rent through September 30, 2014! Once a student or faculty rents a storage unit, they are automatically entered into a sweepstakes to win one of 3 Apple iPad Airs. Also, like the ezStorage Facebook Page, to be entered in a weekly drawing for a $25 iTunes gift card. The sweepstakes and iTunes contest run through June 30th and certain restrictions apply.

The Ultimate College Moving Guide is a great guide for student storage tips from packing up dorm rooms to what can be placed in a self storage unit.  Stop in to any of the 46 ezStorage locations in the Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. areas to find out more about our student specials and sweepstakes.

 

College Moving Guide from ezStorage

Consider self storage facilities from ezStorage

ezStorage’s Storage Unit Size Guide

Storage Unit Size Guide

 

One of the most important factors when choosing a self storage facility is deciding what size storage unit you will need to store your belongings. Before you start visiting storage facilities in your area, you should already have a list of the items that you want (or need) to store in mind. This will help determine what size storage unit you will need to rent.  If you need to store the entire contents of your home, then you will need to have a bigger sized storage unit. If you are a college student storing books, linens or even a bike during the summer months, then a smaller size storage unit will be the best fit for you.  ezStorage created  a storage unit size guide video resources page that provides a visual of what you can place in each size storage unit. ezStorage offers a variety of storage unit sizes from 5×5 up to 10×30 at each of our 46 self storage facilities in the Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. areas.

Below is the self storage unit size guide as well as a description of what types of items can fit within each storage unit size. All ezStorage storage units have 8 foot tall ceilings, so you can use the vertical height as well as the floor space within the storage unit.

Self Storage Unit Sizes at ezStorage

5’x5’ (25 square feet)-This is the smallest size storage unit available. This is a great size for personal items, clothes, skis, children’s toys, small furniture and sales representative inventory or materials.

5’x10’ (50 square feet)-This size will allow you to store a small amount of furniture, chest of drawers, mattress, boxes and other smaller items.

7.5’x10’ (75 square feet)-This is slightly bigger than the 5’x10’ unit, so you can store a bit more furniture, chairs, mattresses or boxes.

10’x10’ (100 square feet)-This size unit can hold the contents of a one bedroom apartment, including appliances (refrigerator or stove), furniture, mattresses and boxed items.

10’x15’ (150 square feet)-This size unit can hold the contents of a two bedroom apartment or home including appliances, mattresses, furniture and boxed items.

10’x20’ (200 square feet)-This size unit can hold the contents of a three bedroom apartment or home including appliances, furniture, mattresses and boxed items. This is also a great option for commercial storage for inventory and storage shelves.

10’x30’ (300 square feet)-This is the largest storage unit available at ezStorage. It can hold the contents of a four to five bedroom home including multiple appliances, furniture and boxed items. This is another great option for commercial business storage.

Once you have decided what self storage unit size you will need, then the important step is to properly pack your storage unit to create the optimum space for your stored items. Following simple tips such as leaving space for ventilation and moving around your storage unit or stacking like size boxes together will make your storing experience easier.

Stop by ezStorage to take a personal tour of our storage facilities. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will help you with any questions that you might have about renting a self storage unit!

Bathroom Spring Cleaning Tips

15 Bathroom Spring Cleaning TipsThe weather has started to warm up, baseball is back and the flowers are beginning to bloom, it must be spring! It is also the time for doing all of the spring cleaning tasks around the house.  72% of Americans surveyed in a recent study actually plan to do spring cleaning tasks. ezStorage recently released a great spring cleaning checklist by room.  In the next few months, we will be sharing spring cleaning tips for each room via our blog. This week, we are starting with bathroom spring cleaning tips. The bathroom, usually the smallest room in the house, is actually the most daunting room to clean. Everything in the bathroom, from floor to ceiling, needs to be cleaned.  Women’s Day has created a great checklist to follow when doing bathroom spring cleaning. You can also create your own checklist based on the tips of how to clean the bathroom below.  Some of the tips below are also great every day bathroom cleaning tips.

Bathroom Spring Cleaning Tips

1. Throw away expired cosmetics and medicine in your medicine cabinet or linen closets.

2. Remove all items from the cabinets and then wipe down the inside and outside of the medicine cabinet, toilet cabinets and linen cabinet.

3. Wash and shake out bathroom rugs, sweep and mop the floor and wipe down the baseboards.

4. Dust corners, ceilings, vents and fans in the bathroom.

5. Take down draperies, curtains and blinds to be washed and cleaned.

6. Scrub the bathtub. Pay Attention to crevices, handles and fixtures. Change the shower curtain liner and shower curtain.

7. Scrub the toilet inside and out.

8. Empty and clean out the trash can. Scrub out the trash can and spray with disinfectant.

9. Remove cleaning products and other stored items from under the sink. If you haven’t used a product in 3-6 months, throw it away. Also check for expired dates on your cleaning supplies.

10. Put away things that don’t normally belong in the bathroom. Put dirty towels and clothes in the hamper to be washed.

11. Replace items in your first aid kit.

12. Reset the bathroom by hanging fresh linen, curtains and placing the clean rugs on the floor.

 

Cleaning Product Tips

1. When cleaning, make sure that you read the cleaning product information labels carefully and follow instructions on how they should be used. The directions will let you know how long you should leave a cleaning product on tile or if you need to diffuse it with water.

2. Vinegar can be an effective surface cleaner replacement. Mix one part white distilled vinegar with 9 parts water. Undiluted white distilled vinegar mixed with baking soda can also be used to remove soap scum in the shower/tub.

3. Make sure to use bleach properly when using as a cleaning agent. Keep bleach away from children and pets!

ezStorage Offers Deals for College Students!

ezStorage offers deals for college students

 

April 1st is not only April Fool’s Day; it is the start of the countdown to the end of the school year for college students and faculty! At the end of the spring semester, college students have to pack up books, personal items, computers, electronics, furniture and other stuff they acquired during the school year. All of the items from dorm rooms and college apartments will need to be transported back home at the end of the spring semester only to be repacked and returned just a few months later for the start of the fall semester. Placing dorm room or apartment items in a self storage facility near the college or university is a great solution for college students and faculty.

Renting a self storage unit is easy and provides a low-cost solution for college students. ezStorage offers month-to-month rentals for all of our storage units. Beginning April 1, 2014 and running through June 30, 2014, ezStorage is offering student and faculty substantial savings With the ezStorage 2014 college special —  You Got Stuff. We Have Storage.” Store your college stuff at your local ezStorage facility and receive your 1st month’s rent free, a free 2 GB USB drive and 10% off your rent through September 30, 2014. It’s a great deal for students and faculty who are on a budget! And once you rent a storage unit, you are automatically entered in our sweepstakes to win of 1 of 3 Apple iPad Airs. Remember, the sweepstakes runs until June 30, 2014 and certain restrictions apply. For specific sweepstakes rules and restrictions, see the ezStorage website.

There are many colleges and universities in the Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. areas. ezStorage has storage units available for college students and faculty at our storage facilities near the following colleges: The University of Maryland, The U.S. Naval Academy, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Coppin State University, George Washington University, Georgetown University, Bowie State University, Howard University, Catholic University, John Hopkins University, Loyola University, Morgan State University, Towson University, MICA and Stevenson University. Stop by any of our facilities, for great pricing on your summer storage and enter to win in our “You Got Stuff. We Have Storage” sweepstakes!