Lori over at Couponomic Stimulus Package asked for some organization tips a few days ago. I just came across the post but I'm sure she won't mind my joining in. I might have already posted these tips, and they are certainly not originally from me (I wish!), but they are worth repeating.
1. Think "FIFO" (like fee-fi-fo-fum, LOL), which stands for Full In, Full Out. It means never walking up or down a flight of stairs or in or out of a room without something in your hands. Leaving the bedroom? Grab a load of laundry to take to the laundry room (even if you don't plan to do a wash just then). On the way out of the living room, grab a cup or a bowl to drop off in the kitchen.
If I'm heading from the kitchen to my bedroom, I pass the pantry closet (used to be a linen closet), so I always try to grab one or two things to put back there. Remember that every thing you put away is one less thing out of place!
2. Don't throw your manuals and guide books into one big folder. A better idea is to make a folder for each section of the house, and file all that information according to where the appliance/toy/thing is kept. For instance, the warranty and receipt for my dishwasher is in my 'kitchen' file. It's a lot easier to find what you are looking for when you only have a few things to go through instead of 30 or so!
3. Color-coordinate your files. In my house, taxes are purple, cars are blue, health-related is green, for example. Having that purple file every year makes it much easier to toss in all those forms and statements needed for our taxes--instead of just dumping them and then having to hunt them down later.
Obviously we have a file cabinet. It is the kind where you use hanging files. Remember that those 'hanger files' are not where you put your papers. You put them in folders, and then put the folders into the hangers. A file cabinet, even a little 2-drawer one like we have, is a great investment. You might even see them at garage sales!