I used to think that there was a secret to an organized household and everyone knew it but me. I read books by the dozen on decluttering. One day, I realized that my time was much better spent actually doing something about stacks and piles vs. reading about them and I broke my self-help book habit. Over the holidays, I tackled my pantry (last cleaned out, yikes, three years ago by Eva Counter, the genius at (Organizing 4 Life). I threw out THREE garbage bags of out-of-date canned goods and, while nothing disturbs me more than tossing food, the feeling was better than a juice cleanse. I can’t keep myself from opening the pantry doors and admiring the order: pastas on one shelf, breakfast foods on another, baking supplies tamed. It’s lovely. But I did break down and buy a book: Throw Out Fifty Things. The first half tackles your house room by room, but it’s the second half, Attacking the Mental Mess, that I’m loving. You may find some tidbits, too. Available at RJ Julia, or visit the Throw Out Fifty Things website for more tools and inspiration.