Monday, July 14, 2008

Home Organzing - 1

Ok so here it is, my attempts to encourage you to get life organized. I have been thinking about how to do this so that it is not so overwhelming to those of you that want to do it but just can't get over the fear of diving in. So for today I wanted to give you some starter tips to help you in your thinking. I want to begin with some areas that seem to give people the most trouble - lots of stuff scattered all over the place. So look forward to post on organizing your arts and crafts supplies, office supplies, kids room/playroom, pantry, garage, and implementing various systems to make keeping house mindless. All of the following tips apply across the board:
1. Keep them small and clear - Buy SMALL clear containers. I always use the clear shoeboxes at Wal-mart. They are like 99 cents each and I have a ton because I use them everywhere. Sometimes you will need a bigger container but it needs to be only because the items are to big to go in a smaller one. Big containers tend to get stuffed with to much stuff.

2. LABEL, LABEL, LABEL!!! - if you want you can purchase a labelmaker. I love mine but the tape is not cheap so sometimes I just use file folder labels and write on them.

3. Group alike items - don't throw pens, pencils, paper clips, stapels, markers and sticky notes in one box unless you just have a few of them. Keep it small and alike. When you are looking for pens you know where to go and you don't spend 10 minutes fumbling through a mess of stuff to find what you want.

4. Everything needs to go in same place - all craft supplies go in one place, all office supplies go together, all Thomas the train go together, etc. There are a few exceptions to this that I will give each time we work on a room. For example, I keep all of our craft supplies together in one place - mine and the boys. But I have pulled out a handful of crayons and a few coloring books that are kept in Jake's room so that he can have quick access to them for his room time. All of the other crayons and paper and coloring books are kept together with the craft supplies so I know what I have when I plan an activity.

5. I operate with Function over Design mentality. I like cute but it doesn't usually fit into my budget so I go with simple and basic - clear shoeboxes. I have 2 good friends that I help organize their house that prefer Design. So they buy the cute boxes and baskets for certain spaces and I come in and make them function. So I will always give you functional (and cheap) ideas and you can implement them however you choose.

This week I will post about organizing your craft supplies. So if you are up for the challenge here are some things you can do in the meantime to start preparing:
1. pick a place in your house you want to store your craft supplies - closet, bookshelf, a "craft closet" It needs to be a place that you can lock if you have small children unless you want your acrylic paints on your nice sofa.
2. take a laundry basket and go through each room in your house and get any craft/art supply you find - markers, crayons, construction paper, yarn, scissors, paint - well you get the gist. Gather them together in 1 place so that you have EVERYTHING before you start. This will help you know how much of stuff you have.
3. Buy some shoeboxes and labels.
4. Don't get overwhelmed if you have a room full of stuff rather than a laundry basket. Soon it will all have a place.

Good luck!!!

4 comments:

Lindsey said...

thanks amy! my mom is coming today or tomorrow for a week and i am looking so forward to doing some ORGANIZING! i'm tired of stuff being everywhere?!

Kristin said...

Thanks!

Shelley said...

ok. i am going to check your blog often. we are slowly but surely working toward organization based on sheer need. it is out of control around here. thanks for the wisdom.

Holly S. said...

Amy, I really think you should write a book one day on organizing.