Tips for Being Productive While on a Road Trip

The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Sharon at Mom of 6.

During the summer months my family and I love to take lots of road trips- venturing off to explore new areas of the country, or heading out to stay with friends and family that we don’t get to see throughout the year. But just because we are taking some time off to travel doesn’t mean that the hubby and I don’t need to get some work done in the car along the way. We often take turns driving so that one of us can work while the other navigates the way. Over the years I’ve assembled a “car productivity tool bag” that allows me to keep up with my workload, stay organized, and most importantly- be able to enjoy this time away with my family because I’ve completed my assignments before our arrival!

Tips for Being Productive While on a Road Trip

Online Connectivity and Apps

One of the most important tools that we use to work while on the road is our wireless hotspot internet connection through our mobile phones. If we know that we are going to be traveling a lot in the summer, we usually increase the size of our family’s data plan so that we are prepared (and AT&T does a great job of letting us know if we are coming close to our limit, so we can always increase it while traveling if needed). Just be sure to check in advance that your carrier’s data plan covers the areas where you will be driving- otherwise you’ll need to plan to be able to work offline while out of your data zone!

My favorite tool for taking notes and creating documents while working without internet connection is Evernote. I can just continue to work on my laptop and then copy and paste from Evernote directly into any other online word processing program once we’re back online. And for times when it’s just the kids and I road tripping and am the full-time driver but still need to get some writing done- I’ll use the Dragon Dictation app to dictate a piece into my phone. This amazing app translates my spoken words into a written document that can be sent to me via email, text, or copied into Evernote.

Productivity Toolbag

Car Productivity Tools

Before we leave I will gather all of my “tools”- from my laptop to my camera equipment and lay it all out on the dining room table to organize it. Here’s what I take along:

Car Productivity Tool Bag

#1- Laptop and Mobile

My laptop and it’s neoprene case (for protection while inside of my bag), regular laptop charger plus a car adapter for my laptop that plugs right into the car outlet. I’ll also pack my phone and charger, tablet and charger, my backup battery for my phone (my old 4S doesn’t hold a full day’s charger any more, so I purchased a PowerGen Mobile Juice Pack a while back that I can plug in while on the go and it recharges my phone. (Note: Amazon affiliate link). I also love to take along a portable speaker (Jawbone Jambox) and its charger. All of the chargers get loaded into one zip-top bag so that I can find them easily when I need to re-charge my devices upon our arrival.

#2- Camera Equipment

While I do use my phone for outdoor pictures while traveling, I am rarely satisfied with the shots I take using indoor lighting- so I always carry my Nikon D5000 with its charger, zoom lens and upload cord, as well as my Canon Vixia video camera with its corresponding charger and upload cord. All camera accessories are loaded into a separate ziptop bag to make them easier to find.

#3- On the Road Desk

I take a sandwich-sized bag and put inside a few mechanical pencils, pens, paperclips, post it notes, a 3-prong to 2-prong power converter (I have actually stayed in hotels that didn’t have 3 prong outlets for my computer!) as well as a few Band-Aids (you know in case I get blisters from the cute new shoes that I bought for the trip!). I’ll also tuck in a full-sized legal pad for note-taking and list making along the way (because a girl can’t function without the ability to make a list now and then!)

#4- Productivity Bag

When my family and I traveled overseas a few years back- I wanted a great bag that could serve as a diaper bag, laptop bag, and even a purse if needed- but instead of buying a diaper bag or a business bag, I chose to buy a Sherpani workout bag because it had a great shoulder strap to provide plenty of support when I over-loaded it, and it had lots of separate pockets that run the full width of the bag- making it easy to fit in my laptop plus so much more! I have used my bag for more than 5 years and I still love it!

What tips for being productive do you have for getting a little work done while on a road trip? I always one to pick up some new ideas- so please share yours!

Sharon Rowley Head Shot 150 x 150 Thumbnail If you get a chance, I hope you’ll stop by to see me at Momof6 – a place where I write about organizing your home, using a family calendar, creating household routines, hosting at-home birthday parties, and holding a DIY summer camp! You can also find me over on GreatFamilyRoadTrips- where I share ideas and itineraries to inspire you to hit the road!

 

 

Linking up: The 36th AvenueDesign Dining and Diapers

 

Filed under: Guest Bloggers, Sharon, Travel/Auto Organization

July 2014 Sponsor Spotlight

Sponsor Spotlight for July 2014

Hello lovely people, happy summer day to you!  I appreciate and thank all of you for visiting and reading my blog. Welcome to the July edition of my Sponsor Spotlight.  As you may have noticed I have many long term sponsors here that have been with me for many years in most cases and I am so very grateful.  Please do check them out below and read up on how each of them can help you on your quest for organization.  They are awesome and I think you’ll find their resources super helpful as you work towards getting organized, simplifying and decluttering your life. Below you’ll find information on any current specials, promotions, posts, discounts and/or any workshops that may be available to you at this time. Keep reading and you’ll see what I’m talking about, there are some fantastic resources here!!

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Profitable Organizer is a company created to help you set up your own Professional Organizing business. I get many inquiries from people wondering how to go about doing this so I’m thrilled to be able to refer you to an excellent resource. Professional Organizer, Cynthia and her husband Adam have designed their business and membership site to help walk you through this process step by step. To find out if this is a path that might be right for you, you can take a tour of their extensive training area and watch a video that walks you through what is required and how Profitable Organizer can assist you with setting up your business. Find out more about their membership options, which include videos, forums, sample documents and much much more, here.

You can also find Profitable Organizer on Facebook

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Alejandra Costello is a Certified Professional Organizer who shows individuals how to become more organized and productive on a daily basis by setting up systems that work for their own organizing style. Alejandra started her company, Alejandra.tv, in 2008 at the age of 23 and to date has shared her organizing expertise with thousands of people in over 100 countries around the world. Formerly an IT engineer, Alejandra was named 1 of the 5 most organized people in America by HGTV. Her expertise has been featured in HGTV, The Washington Post, Family Circle, Woman’s Day, The Washington Times, CBS, NewsChannel8, and Mashable.

Alejandra just added 40+ “how to” organizing videos and lots of printables to her complete organizing program (the Power Productivity Program)! In the program she shows you step-by-step how to get organized, stay organized, and become your most productive self without slipping back to your old ways. The program gives you the tools you need to finally overcome your physical and mental clutter. For more information: www.alejandra.tv/products

Here are a couple of Alejandra’s most recent videos:

How to Pack Travel Documents

How to Pack a Carry On Suitcase

Binder Organization with Better Binders from Staples

Feeling stuck with clutter & can’t get started? Alejandra’s video series shows you 3 e-a-s-yyyyy things to do tonight to feel more organized tomorrow morning. How’s that for starting the day off right?! You can sign up to watch the free videos here.

Find Alejandra on Facebook Twitter Pinterest.

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Get Organized Wizard is a company designed to help you move from procrastination to action. Their programs help busy men and women take action toward a life of greater happiness, productivity and personal organization. Michelle has many products and programs available to help you with getting organized. You can view all of them and how they can help you by visiting her product page. One of their popular programs is called 7 Days to a Dramatically Decluttered Home. This program will help you radically reduce the amount of junk, clutter, and excess STUFF in your life. all in just 7 days, 1 hour a day! Over 7 days, Michelle will help you to:

  • Make a life-changing mindset shift so you can finally part with unneeded stuff
  • Know how and where to start decluttering – and to make that start
  • Be able to make decisions about things you might need one day
  • Decide how much stuff is the right amount for you
  • Work out exactly what to keep and what to let go, room by room
  • Choose what to do with your decluttered stuff – sell, donate, toss?
  • Get rid of clutter – even when there’s nowhere uncluttered to work
  • Deal with kids’ clutter
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Also find Get Organized Wizard on Twitter and Facebook.

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In addition to her professional organizing business, Aby Garvey also offers terrific online workshops at Simplify 101. For a complete list of all upcoming online classes please visit their workshop catalog. Unsure if an online workshop is right for you? Take a tour of their online workshop system in advance.

In addition to their expert-guided classes, Aby now offers self-paced online classes! These classes are on-demand, which means you can start when the time is right for you and make progress at your own pace! As with all of their online classes, you get high-quality class materials in multiple formats, plus with their self-paced online class (this is new, too!) you get access to simplify 101’s member area for support and accountability! No more waiting around for the next lesson to be released when you’re raring to go. And, no more feeling overwhelmed that you aren’t progressing through one lesson each week!

Plus, you’ll gain access to their online class features, like a dynamic checklist to keep you organized, audio lessons to reinforce concepts, and videos to complement the written lesson materials. The new, self-paced online classes are available at lower price than our expert-guided classes. Plus, all of the classes stand on their own, which means you can take just those classes you need, saving you time and money. Because you can start classes on your time schedule, you can spread out your investment over time. All self-paced classes can be found HERE.

Find Simplify 101 on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

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Smead Manufacturing Company is a well-known leader in high quality, environmentally responsible and innovative products, most of which are made right here in the USA. Founded in 1906 in Hastings, Minnesota, Smead is a certified woman-owned business offering thousands of organizational products for use in the home or office. For more information on Smead’s products, visit smead.com. For personalized organizing advice, tips and solutions, visit Smead Organomics.

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Submit a Smead product review using this link and you could win a $100 Smead shopping spree!!

Also don’t forget to pick up Smead’s e-book of 100 Ideas for Better Organization. Originally published in 2006 in celebration of its 100th anniversary, the folks at Smead have updated the e-book with more current, clever tips to help take the stress out of organizing! To make it easy to use, it’s arranged in sections around a common theme such as To Do Lists, Keeping Focus, and On the Go. Each tip is titled so you can quickly scan the book for ideas you need and can implement in a few minutes. So keep it handy and save time when your next “organizing obstacle” arises! To download a free copy of Smead’s 100 Ideas for Better Organization, simply click here. Happy Organizing!

Smead also produces a weekly podcast with organizing tips. Check it out at www.Smead.com/podcast

You can also find Smead on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube!

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If you would like to consider joining these awesome sponsors and advertising with me, please send an email to organizingjunkie (at) gmail (dot) com and I’d be happy to discuss my rates with you. Please also check out my advertise page for my site statistics. Thanks so much!!

Filed under: Sponsor Spotlight

Menu Plan Monday ~ July 28/14 Guest Host Today!

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Hi everyone, hope you are all doing well. This week while I’m busy enjoying a whole lot of family togetherness I asked my regular recipe contributor Melanie to come share with you what her family will be eating this week.  I’ll be back with you next week and I’ll let you in on what we’ve […]

Filed under: Menu Plan Monday

Travel Organization: Children’s Clothing Bundles

Travel Organization Children's Clothing Bundles

The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Rachel at Useful Beautiful Home. I’ve had packing suitcases on the brain lately. I wrote about neck ties, bracelets, and now am sharing one more travel organizing post that pertains to children’s clothing. I’m always searching for ways to guide independence in children and packing the […]

Filed under: Guest Bloggers, Kid Stuff, Rachel, Travel/Auto Organization

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream

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The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Melanie at Melanie Makes. If there’s one dessert flavor combination I can’t get enough of, it’s peanut butter and chocolate.  A true classic.  One that will never go out of style.  And now?  I’ve perfected it in ice cream form! We’re huge ice cream fans in […]

Filed under: Guest Bloggers, Melanie, Recipes

Menu Plan Monday ~ July 21/14

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Hello!  It’s time to do a menu plan for the week!  Having a menu plan makes for one organized week and you will feel less stress in your day especially when it comes to 4:00 or as I like to call it, the witching hour.  You know the one I’m talking about! So I hope […]

Filed under: Menu Plan Monday

Summer Homework for Kids

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The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Sharon at Mom of 6. We “do summer” a little differently at our house…. after a school year that is full of activities and sports and lessons and commitments- we take the summers off. My kids don’t go to camp, we don’t sign up for tennis/golf/soccer/chess/horseback […]

Filed under: Guest Bloggers, Sharon

4 Ways to Clear Your Mind When You Don’t Have Time

Clear Your Mind

The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Emily at So Damn Domestic. It’s one of those days. I’ve got stuff to do and my mind is muddled. I haven’t been getting good sleep lately; dreaming all night every night (because my brain won’t stop) is exhausting. I’ve got to clear my mind. Have […]

Filed under: Emily, Guest Bloggers

Bathroom Reorganization AGAIN

Bathroom Organization

Okay friends I’m at it again.  Yes I’ve reorganized my ensuite bathroom again.  For those that might not know about my love hate relationship with my ensuite let me fill you in.  First let me just say that I absolutely love having an ensuite, I’m not complaining about that.  I’m not even complaining about the […]

Filed under: Bathroom, Before and After

Menu Plan Monday ~ July 14/14

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Hello! Time for another edition of Menu Plan Monday otherwise known as the best place to start on your quest to get organized. So we are in for a super nice week this week so I don’t want to have to turn on my oven to heat up my house. So I managed to come […]

Filed under: Menu Plan Monday