Cat Sorts Herself Out

Keeping your shit together… Tools to make busy mums life easier

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Life can get a bit crazy and out of control for busy parents!  With scheduling playdates, weekly swimming, remembering dress up days, feeding your kids moderately healthy food, remembering your MOT or to pay your bills all whilst trying to keep up a half decent social life or perhaps hold down a job – that old adage of juggling too many balls is clearly no over statement!  Personally, after starting back in the office full time a month or so ago and forgetting an important birthday (my nephew’s first one), I feel the time has come to get my shit together!

juggling-balls

I’d love to share some tools and techniques, I am trying out to lighten the load, get on top of things and make more time for what really matters.

1.Cosi:

This is a new one for me but basically, it’s a joint family calendar that holds each family member’s appointments all in one place.  The best thing is that now keeping an overview of the family diary is a shared task between me and my partner!  Also, we don’t have to spend ages asking each other silly questions about what is in each other’s diaries – my partner and I both link our g-mail calendars so we have visibility of who is around to look after the kids or do pick up and drop offs.  Cosi also allows you to allocate meals to certain days of the week, have shared task lists and a birthday reminder – all in the free version.  (Birthday reminder – clearly something I could have done with this year!)

2. Todoist:

I’ve had Todoist for a while now – I use it to manage all my personal to dos and my top 5 to dos of the week.  It’s easy to use, you can sort tasks into coloured folders, give them due dates and and I sync it across my laptops and two phones so where ever I am I can easily see what needs to be done and capture a few notes.  I use the free version but still find the functionality just what I need.

3. Stylebook

This app allows you to photograph and record your whole wardrobe and create it into outfits!  Sounds frivolous!  But if you follow me and my blog, you will know, I am really trying to make more of an effort, especially at work (check out my last blog on this #21daysofstyle).  Daisy introduced me to this great app, it allows me to save outfits down from my wardrobe and then schedule them against days of the week!  It’s not as much work as it sounds because if you shop the high street it has all the current fashions already saved down (removing the need to take a photo yourself), you just pop them into your online closet.  It’s a lifesaver if you look in your wardrobe in the morning and can’t decide what to wear!  It costs a few quid but is only on the iphone – I think other similar things are available.

4. Sunday night planning

A bit boring but sitting down once a week to ensure there’s a plan in place can give a real sense of control and make sure things don’t get missed.  Every Sunday night after dinner, I sit down and overview the week, check off key appointments in Cosi with my partner, check all the meals are planned and my online shops are good to go.   I also use this time to update my 5 larger to dos for the week and to ensure I can see where I can fit in a bit of me time fun or relaxing just for me!

 

get-organised

As a paper notebook lover – it’s all a bit of a new world for me and I have reluctantly ditched my old kikki-k organiser but I genuinely feel being phone based is going to help me have what I need when I need it.  I haven’t quite managed to move over to Evernote or Onenote yet and still do carry a paper notebook for meetings though!  How do you keep your shit together?  Are you a love of pen and paper or an online kinda girl?

It would be great to hear about anything you are using to simplify, organise your life and generally get sorted out!

Cat Haigh is the founder of Sorting Self, an on & offline community aimed at empowering and inspiring busy mums to be their best selves.  Currently Sorting Self holds monthly talks with expert speakers and a monthly self-development book group in North London.  The next event is the book group on Monday 21st November in Muswell Hill.  For more information and to join the mailing list go to https://sortingself.com/

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#21days of style… How I created my own Unique Style…

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Nearly two years ago, my daughter Noemi was born… sitting on the sofa watching Gossip Girl, feeding my one month year old, I nostalgically recalled days long ago when I loved clothes, when I looked in my wardrobe excited every morning and pranced around everyday feeling stylish and confident… my life for the past few years had been all about babies, working at home, dragging things out of my wardrobe in less than 15 seconds and just wearing old clothes in case they got sick on them!  At some point I guess, I just stopped buying new and exciting clothes and when I did manage to do so, they just didn’t seem to match anything in my wardrobe (so stayed in there!)

A desperate need to sort my style was one of the driving reasons behind launching Sorting Self… I wondered whether other women felt the same? The first talk I ever organised was Style Survival for Busy Mums and this was the kick I needed to motivate me into action… I started reading about curating a wardrobe, I came across an interesting book called ‘I love your style’  despite some lovely pictures I felt the common style terminology ‘classic’, ‘chic’ or ‘bohemian’ just wasn’t me… Neither did I want to harp back to my teenage/student self – I wanted to create my own unique sense of style that fitted the me I am today (although I do still have a lovely pair of Docs that aren’t going anywhere!)

my-trusty-oldish-docs

So, what did I do?

I’ve been through a long but fun process of reviewing my wardrobe, pulling together moodboards to evoke feelings, determine colours, identifying shapes, creating my ideal outfits… then I met Daisy from Wardrobe Workshop who has really helped me with shapes and introduced me to a world of colour that didn’t exist in my previously black wardrobe…

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Style: a creative process

As women, we often have multiple selves… the yummy mummy (aka slummy mummy), the budding creative entrepreneur, the slick career woman… I wanted to curate a wardrobe to fit my multiple roles but still express a sense of self… since 2016 I have developed a good sense of style for my Autumn/Winter and Spring/Summer style collections but my most organised and date I say it, my capsule wardrobe is my ‘Business Style’!  This was born out a requirement to absolutely nail it!  I went back to the office 5 days a week 5 weeks ago and wanted to not only look stylish but have a bit of personality at work too.  After 3 years working at home, my workstyle was virtually non-existent, just ‘stylish black dresses’…  A thought out process, lots of moodboarding, thinking about colours and shapes and being really clear in my head about what I wanted meant I managed to get nearly all of what I needed in just one shop to Debanhams personal shopper (and Daisy to hold my hand, especially on the power handbag front, but that is another story!)

#21daysofstyle

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#21daysofstyle day1

I recently joined the world of Instagram after a bit of encouragement from some fashion bloggers at Lucky Things Sunitas blogger get together.  I thought it would be a great opportunity to put my style to the test with a challenge #21daysofstyle

It certainly has been a challenge and I have managed 4 stylish days (in the office), 2 dressing gown days and one slightly teenage self style!  But I know that a year ago… I couldn’t even have manged 4 never mind had the guts to challenge myself to 21 days!  Do pop over and have a look at instagram to see how I am getting on!

How do you curate your personal style?

If you are interested in finding your unique style personality – join Daisy and I for Create your own style workshop on Saturday 12th November, 2-4.30pm in North London

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At this fun and creative session you will:
-create your own inspirational moodboard
-identify your own unique style vision based on how you want to look & feel
-learn about typical ‘styles’ as an inspiration
-select a set of ‘silhouettes’ you love
-create an action plan of next steps
You will leave with your own personal sense of style, ensuring you can be more confident about being the real you and dressing to suit your personality.

Sorting Self, is on & offline community aimed at empowering and inspiring busy mums to be their best selves.  Currently Sorting Self holds monthly talks with expert speakers and a monthly self-development book group in North London.  For more info sign up to the mailing list at http://www.sortingself.com