Organization is one little piece of the minimalism and simplicity movement and this week’s guest is an expert! Amanda Clark, owner of Ever So Organized, brings us tips, techniques, and wisdom she’s learned from helping over 100 families per year. In this interview, we discuss general clutter, principles of minimalism, common decluttering roadblocks, and Amanda shares her favorite organizing products!

In This Episode:

  • Amanda’s organizing process in a nutshell
  • Is your clutter taking your energy?
  • When to hire a pro vs when to DIY your organizing
  • Decluttering roadblocks and how to get past them
  • Tiny with kids? Games that make cleaning fun


Links and Resources:


Guest Bio:

Amanda Clark

Amanda Clark

Amanda Clark is the owner of Ever So Organized®, a full-service home-organizing company based out of Orange County, California. She specializes in helping busy families simplify, declutter and create beautiful, functional and organized spaces. She provides in-personal organizing locally as well as digital courses.


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More Photos:

Amanda advises to empty a space before you buy containers to organize it

Matching labels look nice and let you know what is where

Keep what you'll use


Amanda feels that clutter can take away some of your energy

Is it just me or is bakeware difficult to organize? Amanda makes it look easy!

You can buy containers to hold just about anything – or make your own


Amanda Clark 0:00

It's always good to reevaluate this thing that I want. Is it worth that time and energy? And the coffee pot may be like, Oh yeah, that's an easy one. But what about that Panini maker? Or what about that one time use item.

Ethan Waldman 0:15

Welcome to the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast The show where you learn how to plan, build and live the tiny lifestyle. I'm your host, Ethan Waldman, and this is episode 261. With Amanda Clark. Amanda Clark is the owner of Ever So Organized a full service home organizing company based out of Orange County, California. On the show today, we're going to really dig into organizing. Organizing is one little piece of the minimalism and simplicity movement. And Amanda is something of an expert. I really love the tips and techniques that she brings, and just the wisdom that she has from doing this for over 100 families per year. We focus in on family clutter in specific, but we also touch on several other principles of minimalism such as capsule wardrobe. What are some common roadblocks for decluttering? And what are Amanda's favorite organizing products? I hope you stick around. It's a great conversation.

All right. I am here with Amanda Clarke. Amanda is the owner of Ever So Organized, a full service home organizing company based out of Orange County, California. She specializes in helping busy families simplify, declutter and create beautiful functional and organized spaces she provides in person organizing locally as well as digital courses. Amanda Clark, welcome to the show.

Amanda Clark 1:42

Hi, thanks for having me.

Ethan Waldman 1:43

Yeah, you're welcome. Glad that you're you're here. And I was curious, just to start, what? What's your story? What, what brought you to to being a professional organizer?

Amanda Clark 1:54

Yes, it's kind of been a dream job, even before I knew it existed. So I was an elementary school teacher for 15 years. And then I had three babies in 20 months. And if you're trying to do the math, there are twins. I have boy/girl twins and a singleton. And I ended up resigning staying home. I do love community. And so I joined lots of mom groups. And I met so many moms that were overwhelmed by their spaces. Now they have these little humans and with these babies, there was just stuff coming in the house. So I helped them organize their homes. And I thought I can do this as a career. So I now have seven employees. We help organize over 100 families every year. And we have helped clients live a simpler life with with less. And it's also allowed me to be very involved in my kids school. So I'm the room mom and volunteering. And it's been a really nice balance to my life.

Ethan Waldman 3:14

Yeah, and that's, I mean, I don't have kids of my own, but a lot of lot of our friends are having kids right now. And it's just like, it seems to come with this explosion of stuff.

Amanda Clark 3:26

It does. Yeah, it's it's and you think, Oh, wow, we just won't have that much stuff coming in. And yeah, it's hard. It's hard to stop it.

Ethan Waldman 3:36

Yeah, and it seems like I noticed this that like someone you know, a couple or somebody is pregnant and like people start just dropping off bags of baby clothes and toys and books. Sometimes without them even asking or wanting it.

Amanda Clark 3:51

Yes. Yeah. Because they they're sick of this stuff. And they go, "Oh, I know somebody who has a kid. I can give it give it to them."

Ethan Waldman 3:59


Amanda Clark 4:00

And you know, I'm pretty frugal, so I would see these things and say, "Okay, well maybe we'll find a place for them. I don't even know if I need this yet." And I will say a lot of those baby toys. They do have a short life you know you move on and and it's some clients that we see that they've got a seven year old and they haven't gone through the baby bottles and they're still baby bottles in the kitchen. That does that does happen. But usually you can cycle cycle through items and we just always encourage clients to buy those wooden toys those toys that you would pass down.

Ethan Waldman 4:40


Amanda Clark 4:40

Not the plastic ones that light up that nobody likes those. I don't I don't know why they're around. Those are the ones getting dropped off at people's doors.

Ethan Waldman 4:51

Yeah, yeah. So do you have like a school a methodology of organizing? That is it you know, did you did you... Do a program? Or is it something that you developed on your own?

Amanda Clark 5:03

On my own, I've always naturally been very organized. Even as a child, I did have a student who said to me one time, "You are the most organized teacher I've ever had." And that just made me - that was a big compliment. And because it just, it helps students, it helps us all.

Ethan Waldman 5:28


Amanda Clark 5:29

you know, learn easier, and just knowing that the environment is under control. So it always did come naturally. But yeah, there were definitely steps that I found I was taking over and over. And this is true, whether we're organizing somebody's garage space that they can't park in, or a drawer, where we take everything out. And that can be hard if you're doing that on your own with a large space. But let's say a small closet or a drawer, taking everything out, taking time to wipe down that space vacuum that space, you may not have all that stuff out again, anytime soon. Sorting all these like items, "Oh my gosh, I didn't realize I had all of these nail clippers, once I you know, found them from different places." And then the decluttering, letting go of the items that that no longer serve you. And then planning a a system. And that usually involves some kind of container, bringing that in. And then finally, finally we label almost everything, it actually makes a really big difference, even when you've got items in a clear container. And you're like, "Oh, well, I know that's, that's where I'm keeping, you know, party supplies." But it still takes your brain some time to figure that out. And so if we can just label this is where the plates and cups go. It helps items, go back, because there's a sign there that tells you where it should go. And also find things. And it really keeps the system in place. And then that last step is feeling that sense of calm. You know, we've all we've all felt that way. When we have, you know, finally gotten through that closet or even cleaned out our car.

Ethan Waldman 7:31

Yeah. My wife and I kind of tease ourselves with this. You know, we live in a we don't live in a tiny house, but we live in a very small condo. And when we go away, we like to travel, we actually rent the condo out on Airbnb, because you know, it's great. It's extra money, it helps pay for the trip. And we basically take almost everything out of our closets and out of our bedroom, and out of the hallway and like shove it into this this room that I'm in right now, which is like my tiny little office room. And so this room is like really scary right now because we're getting ready to leave for a trip. But the rest of the place. We're always both like, "Ah", you take a breath. And it's like, "I wish it could be this way all the time, but then we wouldn't have any clothes."

Amanda Clark 8:16

Right, right. But you know, you also get that feeling when you do go on those trips.

Ethan Waldman 8:22

Yeah, right.

Amanda Clark 8:23

Yes. And let's say you go to that Airbnb or that hotel room, and you're not having to take care of your stuff. Whether you put it all in a room or you're in a hotel room. And in I think sometimes when people are concerned about decluttering and letting these items go that they they hold very dear.

Ethan Waldman 8:46


Amanda Clark 8:47

And I think they forget that all of those items are taking a bit of our energy. And I always love to give the example of the coffee maker, you know, that may be very important to you. And you cannot see yourself living without it. And even though it's taking energy, it's giving you energy to get through the day.

Ethan Waldman 9:09


Amanda Clark 9:10

But you are having to keep it clean, wipe it down, get pods for it, or get coffee grounds for, you know, it's still taking a bit of you. And so it's always good to reevaluate this thing that I want. Is it worth that time and energy and the coffee pot may be like, oh, yeah, that's an easy one. But what about that Panini maker? Or what about that, you know, that one time use item? You know, is it really worth the space it's holding, but also the energy it's taking from you? Totally?

Ethan Waldman 9:48

Well, that's, you know, I there's so many different angles that I kind of want to like go with this. You know, it sounds like you work with a lot of families. So you've got you know, it's potentially, to, you know, two spouses, maybe maybe not, but like you've got you got two partners, you've got kids, and you've got, you know, different people with different ideas of what is worth hanging on to. And, you know, I can say, like, between me and my wife, I'm like, "We haven't used this thing in a while, let's get rid of it." And she's like, "No, no, no, like, why would we get rid of it? Like, we own it already? And what if we, what if we want to spiralize vegetables?"

Amanda Clark 10:28

That's, that's a great example.

Ethan Waldman 10:32

When you were saying that I was like, "The spiralizer, we have to get rid of the spiralizer."

Amanda Clark 10:37

Oh, that's great. Yes. Yeah. And, and, you know, that may cause some conflict, you know, having that conversation, especially if you're having that conversation more than once. And definitely bringing in a professional, you know, everyone's on their better behavior. I don't know each other. And so sometimes it just takes us saying, "Hey, do we need this item?" And she might be like, "No, I guess we haven't really used it." And you're like, "Oh, my gosh, I've been asking her for, for a year about them." When they get in the groove, and another adult is, you know, having this conversation with them, sometimes it is just easier then with their partner, to let those items go. And we see this all the time, where we might come in to do a space in the house, and the partner isn't really involved. And then we find that he's out in the garage, getting rid of stuff. Because, okay, we're not we're not bothering him. But he's seen this transformation take place. And he's getting excited. And I always say, "We were not touching the other person's items, especially in a closet, we'll do your stuff nobody else's." And they they come around, they they see, "Oh, wow, this is this looks better. You're finding things better, you're happier. I want to do that in my space." And so I would just say, kind of leave that alone. Take care of your items. And you'd be surprised about how often the partners do come around.

Ethan Waldman 12:16

Nice. Nice. Yeah, I feel like you are probably also like a professional marriage counselor. Yeah.

Amanda Clark 12:25

Yes, yes. I think we have saved a couple of, of marriages for sure.

Ethan Waldman 12:29

Yeah. Yeah. So you know, something that that my listeners are often facing is, you know, they've, they're committed to living tiny in one way or another. And then at some point, they face the challenge of doing a major downsizing. I mean, I've I've talked to people who have gone from like, a 5000 square foot house to 250 square feet. So it's like a major, major thing to kind of downsize. But what are some of the roadblocks that that you see people getting when they're trying to do a major, like downsizing? Yeah. What are some of the solutions?

Amanda Clark 13:09

Yeah, well, I love talking to your audience, because they, they get it, they're already there. They don't need someone like me to say, "Hey, this is why life would be simpler with less things." And I, I had 1000 square foot home. And then we had a back house, it was like a garage turned into a studio. And I was saying to somebody, "Oh, don't you just want to live here like this would be so much simpler having this small space." And the people looked at me like, "I don't know what you're talking about." I realized I was, they weren't my people. And, you know, I was I was happy in the 1000 square feet. But I saw that even smaller. Okay, this, this is just a simpler life. And so you know, your audience is already there. They're on board. But we're all humans, and we have been trained our whole life to consume. And it you can't just flip a switch and say, "Oh, I'm just gonna go through everything on a weekend and get rid of all this stuff. And then I can move into this smaller house." It is like a muscle that you have to build. And you for sure, should not start with the the things that are memories, that that needs to be at the very end. But the bathroom items, hopefully those don't. Those don't hold a lot of emotions.

Ethan Waldman 14:34


Amanda Clark 14:35

When was the last time you decided to get the nail polish out and I loved bringing this up in the middle of COVID because I'm like, if you haven't used your bath salts and your massage tools, you're not you're not going to get to these things. And I find that some people, a lot of people they will say, "Well, I can't get rid of that because I spent good money on that. And that money has already been spent on the spiralizer."

Ethan Waldman 15:09


Amanda Clark 15:10

Okay, well, you know, we spent the money that would just be a waste if we got rid of it.

Ethan Waldman 15:14

Right. And but but and what if we need it again? Down the line?

Amanda Clark 15:18

Yes, yes. Yeah, I, I'm going to talk more about that, because that that's a big one.

Ethan Waldman 15:25


Amanda Clark 15:27

But you know, that money has already been spent, it's out of your bank account. You're, you're making this big change. Remember this feeling of a little bit of that guilt? This is a perfectly fine thing. You know, why? Why did I buy it if I'm not going to use it? And the next time you are shopping, and you say, "Oh, I saw that on Instagram that looked really cool." Remember that guilt. It's, it's not worth bringing more things in.

Ethan Waldman 15:58


Amanda Clark 15:59

But that you're not getting that money back, you can only learn from that experience. And we all do it and, and spending good money. I mean, that could be a very expensive pair of shoes that you don't wear, or something from the dollar section and target that you just have high hopes for. Whether it was $1, or $1,000, you know that that money is gone. And it's time to move on from that. Another roadblock, is you are given it as a gift.

Ethan Waldman 16:33


Amanda Clark 16:33

And some people, especially those whose love languages are gifts, it's really hard. Well, that - they were showing me their love, I can't I can't get rid of this item." And you know, these gifts don't come with rules. If I came to your home, and I brought you something, and I said to you, okay, I am going to want you to put this in your kitchen, and I'm going to come back in about two weeks to make sure it's there. And that you're taking good care of it. And it's being used, that would be ridiculous. But that's what's going on in our head. What if they come back? What if they ask about it? Yeah, some clients will say, and all I'll say, you know, that's, that's not fair. Nobody's expecting that of you. And some clients will say you, you don't know my mother in law like that. She is going to come back.

Ethan Waldman 17:27

She's gonna come.

Amanda Clark 17:30

And if we are making these big changes in our lives, like moving into a tiny home, we're doing it because we are ready to save money, save our sanity. We're overwhelmed. And this is true of you know, any homeowner, they may be overwhelmed, maybe depressed. Maybe they're getting in fights with their partner. And I always say you say to that loved one, "We love that you're showing your love to us. But we're working really hard in trying to live with less and we I feel lighter, I feel happier. And I need your help with that." And some, some loved ones will get on board and some won't. And the ones that don't you thank them for the gift, and you donate that item later that day. You don't have to keep it for two weeks. Keeping it up to a certain amount of time., you don't get any points for. Let it go. So that it's, it's out of your home and just out of your mind.

Ethan Waldman 18:37

There's no five second rule of gifts.

Amanda Clark 18:41

No. And then you you already have guessed the the other problem that people come into is they're keeping it because what if they need it? The just in case items. And we all have that drawer, or that garage or that attic or that room in our parents house or whatever for things that we're keeping just in case. And it's a very slippery slope.

Ethan Waldman 19:11

Oh, yeah.

Amanda Clark 19:12

I've heard this great 2020 rule, where if you can replace that item for under $20 In less than 20 minutes, let it go. Don't don't spend any more time worrying about what if what if I need this? Of course we we don't want to you know buy things all the time and throw them out all the time. But your audience is already thoughtful about that. They're already thoughtful about about the environment and about their their part in that. But sometimes it's just not worth that keeping. Keeping that place for it and taking that energy, just in case. And if you can be part of a community, where we borrow things from each other, whether it's like in my neighborhood, I can get on Facebook and ask any one of my neighbors. Do I really need to keep a shovel that I use once every two years? Maybe I can get that from my neighbor, or for a Buy Nothing group on Facebook. Could you have those things? Like I love my ladder, I feel like I use my ladder a lot. And I am so thrilled when somebody needs to borrow that ladder.

Ethan Waldman 20:34

Yeah, yeah.

Amanda Clark 20:35

Just keeping keeping that community in mind or creating that community if you don't have it, so that we aren't keeping those just in case items that we're using once in a while or not at all.

Ethan Waldman 20:50

Yeah, that's, that's good advice. I like that 2020 rule. And I'm assuming that you mean in under 20 minutes, like you could physically just like, drive over to the store, walk up to the store and grab it.

Amanda Clark 20:59

Right. Right.

Ethan Waldman 21:01

Yeah. Interesting. I like I like those. What about some, some quick wins for you know, somebody who's looking to just like, yep, you know, get organized in like, one small area, and then maybe see if that makes them feel better? Or see if they can kind of carry that forward into another space?

Amanda Clark 21:23

Yeah, well, we've kind of touched on, you know, the partners or the family, you know, living with humans is really hard.

Ethan Waldman 21:31

Yes, living with humans that aren't you.

Amanda Clark 21:33

Yes, who aren't you. Sometimes living with yourself. But you know, they're, they're messy, they bring things in. And as long as you live with humans, this is a constant thing. And so getting that, that quick win, I always recommend starting with the bedside table or the bathroom. Or if you are the person in the family that does the laundry, you know, the laundry area, things that you can spend time decluttering and simplifying, and it's not going to get messed up right away. I would not start with a playroom, I would not, I would not even start with the kitchen that everybody's coming in and out of that those spaces are harder.

Ethan Waldman 22:21


Amanda Clark 22:21

So like I mentioned the bathroom, you have less ties, to the, the freebies, the stuff that you got from the hotels, these bath salts that you thought you were going to enjoy and they've been there for two years. Letting those go and then using that muscle so that you are getting to those those harder areas is really helpful. And one of my favorite tips in decluttering, letting items go, it's really hard in our closets, because we look at our clothes. And unless we have that capsule wardrobe, we look at everything and we go, "I pretty much wear most of this." And the reality is we're wearing 20% of our items 80% of the time, just as you know, we've heard, and we always trick ourselves. And so I advise people to take all of their hangers, and instead of the hook going away from them actually turning all the hangers around so that the hook is facing them. And as you wear an item and you're putting it back in your closet, you're putting it back regular so that you can see the difference in your hangers.

Ethan Waldman 23:45


Amanda Clark 23:46

And I like doing this every season. So that, okay, it's starting to get warmer. What about the sweaters I have or you know, these warmer clothes? I haven't even worn all of these. If I'm going to keep them in my wardrobe. I better wear them in these next couple of weeks. Or, you know, I'll tell myself they've got to go. I can't keep them. You just you can't fool yourself with that trick.

Ethan Waldman 24:13

Yeah. So can you can you explain what a capsule wardrobe is? I don't think I don't think anyone's ever brought that concept up on the show. I'd like to introduce it to the listeners.

Amanda Clark 24:23

Yes. Again, I feel like these are your people. These are your your minimalists or your minimalists in the making where you are just keeping items that you can rotate, for work for play. Very simple, very classic. They tend to also be nicer items not this fast fashion, but items that are going to last you for years. And I wish I could remember some of my my favorite people that have done this but you know they've worn a capsule wardrobe of about 20 items that includes the shoes, and the outerwear, and, you know, the top the bottoms. And you know, they were to work for a year, nobody notices. Nobody notices that they're rotating these 20 items.

Ethan Waldman 25:14


Amanda Clark 25:14

And it really is, you know, this, this concepts of, you know, not spending all this energy, what am I going to wear? You know, it's yeah, picking it out? Again, you know, do they need to be dry cleaned? Do they need to be washed? I do this with my kids, I don't want my kids to have too many items, because it will just keep adding on. So you wash what you need. And you know that they have enough. So yeah, there's definitely great, great people to follow on Instagram that do this that are very inspiring. But it's one less thing to worry about. And if you're in a tiny home, that's about how much space you might have in your closet is that capsule wardrobe.

Ethan Waldman 26:02


Amanda Clark 26:02

And the shorthand thought is, it's like when you go on vacation, you're bringing those you're cycling through. And you've got it, you've got enough, but not too much.

Ethan Waldman 26:15

Yeah. And that's, that's an experience that I've had, which is that you go on a trip, and you pack, you know, some small fraction of the clothes that you own. And it's so nice. It's so simple. Like, you know, you maybe have one pair of jeans and all the shirts that you brought work well with those jeans, and you you know, it's just like, way simpler. And then I've experienced this, like coming home and being like, oh, gosh, there's all that other stuff. Like right this time.

Amanda Clark 26:49

Yes, yeah. Yeah. And it's all you know, all these parts. I love the tiny home movement. Because, you know, we are all thinking about these things. And it might start with how many kitchen items do you need? And then it goes into your wardrobe? And then you know, how is what you're doing affecting the environment? And oh, I'm now I'm taking things out of my, my schedule, because you know, I'm over scheduled and you know, everything gets simplified. And I've never had anyone say, "Oh, gosh, I wish I had more stuff and more more things to worry about." You know, we certainly not we've got we're on the right track. We know how special this is. And that this is better for our mental health, our kids mental health. Whenever I do a playroom, I remind parents that research shows that the fewer toys kids have, the longer they will play and the more they will use their imagination. So for those moms that are having that mom guilt, "Oh, but you know, if we get rid of all these toys, you know, I'll feel bad." No, you're you're doing a disservice by these kids that walk into these rooms, and there's just stuff everywhere. Mm hmm. If they have the blocks, the dolls, the clothes to dress up in. They would be in there way longer and not coming out, "Mom I'm bored."

Ethan Waldman 28:17


Amanda Clark 28:18

You know, the kids know, they know, the fewer things that they need that they're happier. And we're just trying to get back to that feeling of when we were kids. And we we just needed the cardboard box. And we were we were happy for a long time.

Ethan Waldman 28:34

Yeah, totally. And it's funny like you always see kids playing with the thing that isn't the toy anyway. Like, yeah, with the box or playing with just random stuff.

Amanda Clark 28:45

Yeah. Oh, give him a spoon. Yeah. Wooden spoon, that's the best.

Ethan Waldman 28:49

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. I was curious if you had any. Now and I'm not, they could be products. But I'm not saying you know, it's like we all love buying stuff so much that I'm like, "Don't ask her about her favorite organizing products." But like one thing. I think one little trick that I learned from reading the Marie Kondo book all those years ago was using like cardboard boxes as drawer dividers, and like the iPhone box, the air pods box, all these little shallow technology boxes, like make such great dividers for drawers for like, I'm gonna say like, you saw my guitars like guitar picks, capos, like strings, just like divided up into the drawer. So like, are there any other kind of little tips like that where you you know, reusing something that we all have around as as an organizing tool?

Amanda Clark 29:44

Yeah, yeah. So many people. When they're getting organized, they do make the mistake of going to buy the stuff. And I get it. That's fine.

Ethan Waldman 29:56

Yeah, yeah.

Amanda Clark 29:57

I mean, Container Store is one of my happy places. I, you know the possibilities when you go into a place like that?

Ethan Waldman 30:05


Amanda Clark 30:06

And it's, it's surprising to most people to learn like, oh, no, you need to take everything out. You need to declutter, and then you'll know what you need. Do you have a lot of picks? Or, you know, have you moved on and you're on a different instrument? You don't even use those anymore? And now you don't have you don't need a place to put the picks.

Ethan Waldman 30:27

Yeah, yeah.

Amanda Clark 30:29

And so it's hard. It's hard. Because, again, we're consumers. And so we want, we want to go get the pretty bin, and then that will inspire us to get that thing organized. And it's totally backward. So decluttering and knowing what we have, and I yeah, I love the the iPhone boxes, those are so hard to throw away.

Ethan Waldman 30:54

Yeah, they're very stuurdy, too.

Amanda Clark 30:56

Very sturdy, yeah. You know, the, the design that is, you know, in the, in the box as well. So yes, I love I love that. And if you've got boxes where you want them to match, you know, covering them with wrapping paper, or the same kind of paper. Because you know, somebody like me, aesthetically, I do want everything to come together. An easy way to do that is also like we might be in a storage room. And you know, we all collect boxes throughout the year, different bins, and they have they're blue and black and you know, whatever if we can, if you can label everything the same. So you get this same brown label the same black label, I've used a lot of washi tape, and just gotten black washi tape with like a white pen, marker and put it on all different boxes. And that really brings everything together. I already said what a fan I am of labeling everything. So that can really help.

And another tip to keep things organized, but also reuse what you have. I love decanting food. So taking them out those the crackers out of the box and putting them in a container. And that can be you know, the these Ball jars that you've kept, because they're such great plastic jars, but you don't really know what to do with them. Can you put crackers in them? Can you put the nuts in them? Taking items out of their packaging makes a big difference. It's not just a Pinterest fad. There really is a reason behind it. You can see what you have. Because if I look in your cupboard and you've got a box of crackers, I just see the box. I have no idea if there's one cracker or it's a brand new box. And especially if you live with those humans, you don't know who's been in there.

Ethan Waldman 33:06


Amanda Clark 33:06

And so if you can put it in a clear container, you are more likely to eat it because you can see it instead of pushing that aside because you think that's an old box anyway. Food gets eaten more. You also know how much you have. So when you go to the store, you're not over or under buying you know we've got plenty of crackers. We buy crackers every time. That whole jars full of crackers.

Ethan Waldman 33:34

Yeah, yeah.

Amanda Clark 33:35

It's it really is helpful but aesthetically, it looks great. And my little ones helped me decant our food when we come home from the grocery store. It does not take that long. And then you'll be so surprised with how much trash all those boxes and the cereal boxes and the cereal bags and all of those things are taking up a lot of space. And especially if you are in a small space, you do not have room for a big box of crackers that's only holding 10 crackers.

Ethan Waldman 34:08


Amanda Clark 34:08

So I highly recommend the decanting even if you're not totally on board and say try it for a couple of weeks and you'll you'll see the light

Ethan Waldman 34:19

I also love that you get to decant something other than wine. I didn't know you could decant anything but wine!

Amanda Clark 34:27

I know it sounds very fancy when you're decanting your your walnuts.

Ethan Waldman 34:33

Yeah, yeah. Well um you mentioned that your kids help you with with the decanting what are some tips for parents because I do hear from people and I've interviewed people who are doing living tiny with with kids. Do you...? I'll leave that as an open-ended question.

Amanda Clark 34:54

Okay. Yeah, yeah, I mean sure. Parent tips. Yeah. out there if, anytime,

Ethan Waldman 35:02

Probably too broad of a question to even start with, yeah.

Amanda Clark 35:05

Well, I've got, I've got one of my favorite tips and helping kids clean up. Because I knew having three kids close in age, I wanted a tidy house. And I wasn't, I was gonna go crazy if I tried to do that myself. So number one, I let go of my items. I mean, that was huge. We moved from that 1000 square feet, to my dream home of about 2000 square feet, and I got rid of half my belongings.

Ethan Waldman 35:37

That's awesome.

Amanda Clark 35:38

It felt so good, the more I got rid of things. And I have a home that's got a lot of glass, and I don't want to put things in front of it.

Ethan Waldman 35:48


Amanda Clark 35:49

So I enjoy these open spaces, but I need the family to help. And they have been, you know, picking up toys since they could toggle over there. So you know, but starting at any age, just knowing that they can handle it, because always doing it for them is just gonna make you more frustrated. And I get it sometimes telling them, "No pick that up. No, you missed that. Oh, what about this?" You know, sometimes it's easier to do it yourself. So a magic trick that I have is using your phone, ask the kids to tidy up, use the time lapse feature on the phone. Just sit there. Don't get off your behind and just say, "Okay, this all needs to be picked up. Ready, go." And you hold the phone as steady as you can. And they start picking everything up. My kids like to put their hands in the air when they're all done picking it up. And I might say, "Oh, I see something under the couch. Oh, what about that book? Oh, where does that go?" And as soon as we're done, we watch the video back. And I mean, even grown ups. It's fun to watch this room get picked up and for them to move quickly. They'll watch it over and over and I guarantee they're gonna want to do it again.

Do the time lapse game.


Ethan Waldman 37:18

And hopefully they won't figure out that it's really fun to like do a time lapse of like taking everything out and throwing it on the ground.

Amanda Clark 37:27

Oh my gosh. I hope not!

Ethan Waldman 37:29

Yeah, it noly works in one direction.

Amanda Clark 37:31

Yeah. Doesn't work taking it out. Yeah. Yeah. That's really fun.

Ethan Waldman 37:39

Well, Amanda Clark, it's been really great. Speaking with you. Are there any you mentioned that you've you do online courses? Are there any any courses or resources that you recommend that our listeners check out?

Amanda Clark 37:51

Yeah, well, if they can follow me at Ever So Organized. I named the business after my daughter Everly.

Ethan Waldman 38:02


Amanda Clark 38:02

So Instagram, Ever So Organized. My website is And I do a lot of these tips on on Instagram.

Ethan Waldman 38:13


Amanda Clark 38:14

As a teacher, I love teaching these things. And so there's some great before and afters and the time lapse, I just did one yesterday of his taking everything out of the garage, and then having this space totally organized. And on my website, I do have a link to my online courses. And I've got a signature course that is an entire home. But I also have many courses that include just the bathroom or just the posit was some things that we talked about today. Because you know not everyone can afford a team of organizers to come do this. It is the best; it feels good. And I would recommend when you do move, that is a great time to hire a professional organizer because we can have sometimes an entire home unpacked in a single day and being able to cook in your kitchen that has been organized very intuitively that first night you move in just is priceless.

Ethan Waldman 39:21


Amanda Clark 39:22

But the courses help help those do it yourselfers.

Ethan Waldman 39:26

Nice. Well, I'll put links to everything on the show notes page for this episode as well.

Amanda Clark 39:32

Great, thank you.

Ethan Waldman 39:33

Amanda Clark, thank you so much. This was great.

Amanda Clark 39:35

Yeah, this was fun. Thank you for having me.

Ethan Waldman 39:39

Thank you so much to Amanda Clark for being a guest on the show today. You can find the show notes, including a full transcript, over at Again, that's Well, that's all for this week. I'm your host, Ethan Waldman, and I'll be back next week with another episode of the Tiny House Lifestyle Podcast.

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