Operation: Organization–Lisa from Organize 365

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{Don’t forget to enter our giveaway at the bottom of this post!}

This is always one of my favorite times of year–while I never like to put the Christmas decorations away, I do love getting things organized in January.  It’s a great way to hit reset and make sure that everything is running as smoothly as possible.  Operation: Organization always gives me such great ideas, since I can see what everyone else is doing that works.

Since I have a high schooler and a middle schooler, I am drowning in kid- and school-related papers (ballet, drivers’ ed, martial arts, drama, fundraisers, SAT/college prep, you name it!), and this idea from Lisa at Organize 365 is a great one.  Here she is:


The Sunday Basket: Week 1 | The Sunday Basket has increased my productivity, reduced our late fees and generally created sanity in our home. You too can follow this simple weekly paper organization system.
Having a Sunday Planning Routine is the number one reason I am SO productive! If I could share just ONE organizational habit with you, it would be to create a Sunday Basket and have a Sunday Planning Time.

The Sunday Basket has increased my productivity, reduced our late fees and generally created sanity in our home. If this is the first time you’ve heard of the term “Sunday Basket,” well, that’s because I made it up! Let me tell you how the Sunday Basket came to be.

The Sunday Basket is an idea born out of a major mommy meltdown I had when my babies were babies.

Let me set the stage for you… my 2 year old was in the throes of a horrible asthmatic period of his life which involved hospital trips.

His baby sister was a dream… but wanted mommy all the time.

My business was BOOMING. I had parties, recruits, trainings to conduct, workshops… and was spending well OVER 40 hours a week on work.

What I didn’t have was a plan. I was putting out fires left and right. I was afraid I would miss something… and never know what I missed.

And, to top it all off… my papers were completely unorganized! My piles had piles and I couldn’t find anything to save my soul!

paper laundry basket 1
So, after the kids were in bed, I took all my papers into one room and sorted them into 40(!) piles.

I developed a system of using slash pockets to corral all those little papers into manageable chunks and tossed them all in my favorite basket.

FINALLY I was able to pull one folder out and actually WORK instead of just pushing papers around! Can you relate?

The Sunday Basket | Professional Organizer Lisa Woodruff shares her weekly paper organization and planning tool - the Sunday Basket.
After a few weeks, I realized that I was still overwhelmed with the thought of leafing through 40 folders. So I created a SUNDAY basket.

That Sunday night, after all the kids were in bed, I took out all of my folders and sat on the floor with 2 baskets in front of me. One to do this week and one to “hold” anything I did not need to do until next Sunday.

I picked up each folder and asked myself. Does this NEED to be done before next Sunday?

This allowed me to put current projects I was working on aside for one week, but not lose the project! Everything was together in the slash pocket and accessible if I needed it.

The key to the Sunday Basket is that you have to go through everything in the basket EVERY Sunday!

Sanity and Beauty!!

Ohhhhhh! The glory of baskets!! My husband no longer saw paper piles a mile high! I could grab an item from the “To Do” basket and get it done!!

Eventually, I started sorting school papers and mail right into the Sunday Basket if it could wait until Sunday.

The Sunday Basket frees your mind from worrying that things will get done and allows you to focus your energy on what you need to get done.

It takes time, but my week goes so much more smoothly when I set aside this planning time each week.

Weekly Planning Printables | The Sunday Basket has increased my productivity, reduced our late fees and generally created sanity in our home. You too can follow this simple weekly paper organization system.

After writing out my Sunday basket weekly checklist every single week for years, I finally decided to put it all into one document and share it with you to make your Sunday planning time easier.

Having all of your to-do’s all in one place makes it so much easier to check things off your list.

Sunday Basket Planning TIme | Every Sunday I use these free planning printables to plan my week and save hours of time!

After I go through all of my to-do lists and check off as many items as I can, I move on to planning my week.

40 Weeks Planner Page | Every Sunday I use these free planning printables to plan my week and save hours of time!

No matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to accomplish more than three work and three home tasks in one day.

Knowing these limitations in advance, I select the most important tasks that must get done each day for the week.

Even though I love to use an online Google calendar, I need to see my week printed out in front of me in time blocks.

The pink shaded times of 7 AM, noon and 5 PM remind me when I should eat and drink some more water and are a visual way to chunk your day in to 3 time segments. 🙂

Download your FREE Sunday Planning Printables and start planning your week today!


Thanks for the great idea, Lisa–and the printables!

Xangar logo
Because we want to share the organizing love with you all, we’ve got some great giveaways during this series.  Xangar is giving away a 50-pack of their clothes hanger spacers to one lucky reader (a $79.99 value!) so that you can tackle your closet and make it simply beautiful and organized.  I’ll be using them in my closet makeover, which I’ll show you at the end of the series, and I’m so excited about them!  {Shop for them now here}

calendar pad1
We’re also including one of our 11 Magnolia Lane calendar pads to help you keep your week on track.  Read more about how to best use them {here} or shop them {here}.

Good luck!  Enter the giveaway here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow our group Operation: Organization Pinterest board {here}.

Operation: Organization 2016
Monday, January 11—Lisa from Organize 365
Tuesday, January 12 —Samantha from Simply Organized
Wednesday, January 13—Erin from Sunny Side Up
Thursday, January 14—Shand from Quarters One
Friday, January 15—Abby from Just a Girl and Her Blog
Saturday, January 16—Morgan from Morganize with Me
Sunday, January 17—Heather from The Heathered Nest
Monday, January 18—Mary from Mary Organizes
Tuesday, January 19—Melissa from Polished Habitat
Wednesday, January 20—Becky from Organizing Made Fun

Have a beautifully organized day, and thanks for stopping by–

Final New Christy headshot 2015


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  1. I love saving papers to deal with until Sunday. I don’t have to mess with them till then.

  2. Too many ads! You’re losing me. So distracting, even though you have helpful information.

  3. Oh my word! LOVE this post! What an amazing idea! I may have to implement this one right away. So smart! Thank you Lisa and Christy for sharing! xo

  4. I’m downloading the Sunday Basket printable as I type. Can’t wait to put this to use – what an awesome idea!

  5. Donna Marie says

    I neeeeed those Xangar hangers so I can contain my overflowing closet!!! This is my favorite organizing tip from this blog!!!

  6. I would love help with my closet!

  7. Kendra McCamey says

    Wow I lOVE the hangar hanger idea! xoxo

  8. Samantha Pulliam says

    I am in DESPERATE need of those hangers in both my own & my daughter’s closets! Lol.
    I’ve searched high & low and have yet to purchase any yet, based on the fact that I haven’t found any with “rave” reviews..or even good or bad reviews for that matter so I didn’t want to feel like I was buying blindly!
    Whoever does win, please let us all know how great these hangers are!

  9. kathy benton says

    Maybe those xangers would make my closet look professional. I tried the matching hangers but I need to have space between everything! Would also help if I would take the time to repurge for 2016!! Thanks.

  10. This is an amazing idea!!! Can’t wait to do this in our house! I’m kinda known as the paper pile queen at home, so this would be so helpful!!!

  11. Thanks for the organizational series!

  12. I love the basket idea and mainly setting aside time to visit the basket each week! That’s where my current system fails.

  13. Loved this when I read it, now I have a create, hanging folders, and files…I’ve started, WOW!! 3 waste cans trashed, the piles are decreasing. So I had to come back and say “Sunday Basket” is a great organizing idea.

  14. I love this idea! I have two toddlers and I’m always fearful of things slipping through the cracks!

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