Category Archives: Organization

Cut flowers sunflower zinnia

Simple Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

Mark your calendars! Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 8, 2022. It falls a little earlier than usual this year. Don’t worry of you were caught off guard. We’re here to help with some simple Mother’s Day gift ideas.

Solar wind chimes

We noticed these beautiful lights at our neighbor’s house and had to get a closer look.  These cute butterflies light up at night. It is solar powered and they slowly change colors! So pretty!  We could watch them all night.  

Disclaimer: Some of the links below are referral links,
which means that if you make a purchase, there is no extra cost,
but Running A Household will receive a commission.

Solar Wind Chime Butterfly

The best part is they come in multiple shapes. We bought the solar hummingbird wind chime for my mother in law:

Solar Hummingbird Wind Chime

The solar sunflower wind chime is perfect for any garden:

Solar Sunflower Wind Chimes

Add any of the solar wind chimes to your garden, landscaping, or even a large pot on your deck or patio.   Simply use a black garden hook or small post like this one:  

Shepherd Hook

Such a simple gift that is a pleasure to look at everyday!


Let’s face it, we could all use a little chocolate. Here are our top three choices for chocolate gifts:

  1. Ghiradeli squares
  2. Lindt balls
  3. Whitman’s sampler – dark chocolate

Short on time? You can always pick this up at your local grocery store, along with some flowers.


Whether it’s a bouquet from the grocery store or a hanging basket from your local flower grower, most moms love flowers or plants.

Simple Mother's Day gift idea: flowers
Blue vase with fresh cut flowers: sunflower, purple asters, pink zinnias and white snapdragons

Looking for some specific ideas to make it special? Here are some of our favorites:

  1. Deck planter with sunflowers
  2. Barrel with kitchen herbs (basil, rosemary, parsley, and thyme)
  3. Perennial plant for the flower garden or landscaping:
  • White daisies
  • Yellow black-eyed Susan’s
  • Purple coneflowers

Still need more Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Mom and Grandma?  Check out our article on How to Select a Mother’s Day Gift:

15 Mothers Day Gift Ideas for Mom and Grandma

15 Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Mom and Grandma

Also be sure to peek in the Mother’s Day Gift Shop.

Have a Happy Mother’s Day!

Are you looking to cut the paper clutter, get organized and save money?

If you are looking for a way to reduce your paper clutter, get organized and save money, you’ll want to read on.  We recently came across a unique product that can help you do it all.

It was a board to write on, but without the paper.  This liquid crystal board was designed so that you can write on it and then erase it.  So you can reduce the clutter around your home and save paper.  What a great idea!

Disclaimer: Some of the links below are referral links, which means that if you make a purchase, there is no extra cost to you, but Running A Household will receive a commission.  Thank you for supporting our website.

How to Cut the Paper Clutter, Get Organized and Save Money

A liquid crystal board can help you get the job done.  The one we tried is called a Boogie Board Blackboard and looks like this:

The one we purchased was 8 1/2 x 11 inches, which is the standard size of paper that fits in your printer or copy machine.  Ours came with  various backgrounds:

  • Lines
  • Dots
  • Blank
  • Schedule

Honestly, it was the schedule that caught our eye.  The thought of planning our week without using a piece of paper was very intriguing.  It worked out just as we thought.  We weren’t quite ready to erase our board, so we snapped a picture with our cell phone so we could save the schedule for the rest of the week.

The other backgrounds worked great for our purposes.  We used the blank paper to draft an article for our website and later made a quick to do list using the lined paper.

The 8.5 x 11 inch board really suited our needs.  However, it comes in smaller sizes as well as different colors.  Just know that not all boards come with the handy lined paper or schedule backgrounds.

This Boogie Board 8.5-Inch LCD Writing Tablet comes in cyan blue and can fit nicely in a purse, school backpack or briefcase.

For more details, sizes and colors you can check out this link: Boogie Board Blackboard

Christmas in July: Tips on Getting a Head Start

Do you wish there was less hustle and bustle around the holidays?  What if you could have more time to relax and enjoy the Christmas season?  We’re here to help with a few “Christmas in July” ideas.   Consider doing just a few things in July to get a head start on Christmas and make your season more enjoyable.

Christmas in July Tip #1: Update Your Christmas Card List

Several family members and friends have moved in the last few months.  Take a few minutes to update their new addresses.

Have you made a few new friends this year?  Jot down their names and addresses.  When it’s time to send Christmas cards, you’ll be ready to go.  You will also have a good estimate for the number of cards you plan to send this year.

If you need a good system for tracking addresses, use our printable address tracker which keeps track of names, addresses, and cards received and sent.

Address TrackerAddress Tracker

Christmas in July Tip #2:  Organize Your Gift Wrapping Paper and Bows

July is a great time to organize wrapping paper and bows.  These are great projects to work on when it’s raining, or just too hot to go outside.  Take inventory of the supplies you have on hand.  Make a note of what you need for the upcoming season.

Be sure to group like items together.  If you have gift wrapping paper in the cellar, in a bedroom closet and maybe even some with your Christmas decorations, pull it all together, and find one location.

We actually have a gift wrapping drawer.  It is located in a hutch in our dining room.  We keep birthday and Christmas wrapping paper here, along with all of the necessary supplies:

Curling Ribbon
Gift Tags
Colored Pens and Markers
Gift bags
Gift tissue for bags

This system has worked really well for us.  When it’s time to wrap a quick gift, we grab our supplies from the drawer and use the dining room table to wrap the gifts.  Easy, right?

Disclaimer: Some of the links below are referral links, which means that if you make a purchase, there is no extra cost to you, but Running A Household will receive a commission.

Christmas in July Tip #3:  Make Your Own Gift Tags

Use scrapbook paper like this one from American Crafts to make gift tags for your presents.

Step 1:  Simply cut a circle, or use a scrapbook tool to punch out the circles, like the Fiskars Circle Lever Punch. We love this one because it allows you to make consistent circles and it’s easy to use.  Just insert the paper and press down to make a perfect circle.

Step 2:  Use a Hole Punch Tool to make a smaller hole.

Step 3:  Attach a short piece of Curling Ribbon which can be attached to a present or gift bag.

Then when it’s time to wrap gifts, just grab a Sharpie Markerand add the “To and From” details.

Christmas in July Tip #4:  Make a 2020 Calendar

A calendar filled with personal pictures is a great Christmas gift for grandparents and relatives.  Since it requires gathering pictures for each month, start this project in the summer.

  1. Create a computer folder for all of the 2020 calendar pictures.
  2. Select a store online to create your calendar.  We love Walgreens because their calendars are reasonably priced, good quality, and we can pick them up at our local store.
  3. Upload your photos to the store website.
  4. Start creating the calendar.

Over the summer, we will pull together the 2020 calendar for January – August.  We also use pictures from last Christmas to get the December page set.  Then, we just need to do September, October and November.  We keep our eyes peeled for the 50-60% off sale day, and order in November.  By following these steps, we save a lot of time and money, and can enjoy the holiday season instead of pulling pictures together on December 15th.

Christmas in July Tip #5:  Listen Carefully and Start Your List

Keep your ears peeled for hints dropped by family members and friends.  Maybe they will point out an item they like.  Or, sometimes people will tell you that they wish they had a certain item.  Take note, and start a holiday shopping list.  This way, you’ll have a few ideas once the holiday season arrives.

Christmas in July Tip #6:  Buy a Few Gifts While on Vacation

The holidays will be here before you know it.  To make this holiday season a little less stressful, consider buying a gift or two while you are on vacation.

Gift Ideas

Whether it’s a gardening basket from your local farmer’s market, or a piece of jewelry from a place by the shore, these unique gifts will be sure to please your friends and relatives.  Other ideas include:

Art work
Handmade soaps
Picture frames
Specialty coasters

If you have someone who has everything, or who is difficult to shop for, try shopping for them in the summer.  You’ll be more relaxed and have a different selection to choose from.  Plus, you will avoid last-minute shopping in December.

Christmas in July Tip #7:  Shop for Gifts On-line During July Sales

We saved the best for last.  So much of our time around the holidays is spent shopping.  For years, I never started Christmas shopping until the day after Thanksgiving because of the great deals.

Now, retailers offer great prices in July. Be sure to check out this one on July 15-16, 2019:

If there’s an expensive gift you know you want to buy for someone, check out the price during this sale.  You may be pleasantly surprised to find a great deal in the middle of July!

Did you miss the big sale?  No worries.  Check out these discounts:

Our Recommendations

Wondering what we like to use around our home? Check out our solutions to help you run your household. From helpful organizational items to our favorite vacuum cleaner,  we’ve shared a few of our favorite items in these categories:

  • Cool Gadgets
  • Small Appliances
  • Electronics
  • Lawn Products
  • Pool Supplies
  • Gardening
  • Get Organized

Check out our favorite products here:

Happy Shopping! 🙂

Here are a few articles on our website you may enjoy:

Simple ways to organize gift wrap paper and bows

Christmas Shopping Lists