Archive | March, 2011

Making Family Dinner Fun:

The Organized Cook was recently mentioned in a great article from about making cooking fun for the whole family.

The article “How To Get The Whole Family Involved” talks about the benefits of having children involved in the planning, shopping for and cooking of family dinner.







Here was our tip for getting children involved:

Cooking together makes it all the more meaningful and gives busy moms some assistance in hectic family schedules, says Toni Spilsbury of Organized “Start by planning a menu — with family input,” suggests Spilsbury.  Assign one course per person (Tommy makes the tacos and  read more







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Busy Moms: Claim Your Work Space

I am the CEO.

The CEO of the Spilsbury Home, that is.  It’s a demanding job requiring long hours and the ability to multi-task.  Someone has to do it.

For a solid decade, I held a corporate upper management position with my own office.  My office space was always important to me and met my needs for privacy, style and functionality.

So why for so long has my current position not afforded me the same perk?

With all of our responsibilities as busy moms- or CEO’s-, our space needs to meet the unique needs of this demanding role.  We need it to be visually inspiring and organized so we too are inspired to perform.

Organize your at-home office desk for success!

A nice corner office with a great view?  How about a corner nook with a view of my herb garden?  Close enough.

It doesn’t need to be expensive with custom installation or fancy desk ensembles.  It just needs to be ours.

Instead of heading to the office supply store for sterile stacking shelves, look for pieces that speak to our authentic self and bring joy.  Yes, a pencil holder can bring joy.  And don’t forget a flowering houseplant or bonsai tree.

Peruse places like World Market, Pier1 or even the dollar bins at Target. Your desk organizers don’t necessarily have to match anything, they just have to make us feel good.

After all, our job is important.  It requires it’s own space.  So claim yours.

Organizing tips for your busy-mom home office:

1. Start by decluttering your newly-claimed territory; remove all objects from the area.

2. Place only items needed and wanted for your work objectives on your desk.  Find “new homes” for anything that does not belong in your new work area.

3.  Look around the house for items that can be given new purpose in your work area: those small decorative photo clips might make great “to-do” note holders.

4. Make it inspiring.  Find items that give you that “feel good” vibe- invest in a decorative paper-weight.


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Seeds of Hope

Today was planting day.

I’ll begin this blog by reiterating that I’m in no way a gardening expert.  Not only do I lack knowledge and experience in the garden, I also reside in Southern Nevada where we’re not exactly known as the bread basket of the world.Toni Spilsbury Garden Seeds of Hope

So why grow a garden?

The answer is simple.

It’s something to share with my kids.  It’s shared time, shared work, shared wonder and shared fun.

Don’t get me wrong.  There’s some functionality in there as well.  Although I won’t anticipate enough tomatoes to can sauce for the winter, I can probably rely on some herbs to use in my cooking.

When the girls were a bit younger- just a year or two ago- they would hunt around the yard with little buckets and gather leaves, grass, berries and whatever else they could find and bring it to me in the kitchen while I was cooking.  I pretended to use it in our dinner.

Toni Spilsbury Garden Seeds of Hope

They got so much joy at the age of 3 and 5 by “harvesting” for our meal.  So I think of how much fun they’ll have doing it for real.

Toni Spilsbury Garden Seeds of Hope

So now the seeds are in the ground.  The next step?





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A Bit of Earth

Now who could have imagined that pulling weeds and old vines could be so much fun.

It almost feels like some type of cleansing ritual- getting rid of the old to make way for Spring.

Spring, indeed, is almost here and we are prepared.  As we dig, pull, haul and hoe we talk about all the things we want to plant in our garden this year, which made me think about naming our garden.

The Hope Garden.  No.  That doesn’t sound at all confident enough.  We’ve put too much work and expectation into it this year.

The Victory Garden.  Well, that’s going a bit far.  To be honest, I don’t know a thing about real gardening.

Oh well, the right name will come, and so will the victory… of the fruits… of our hope.  The Hope Victory Garden?  To be continued.


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