Aug 10, 2013

Organizational Frenzy

So I have a few blog posts to share with you along this topic.  We are gearing up for a homeschooling year and this year I have a preschooler, a first grader and a fourth grader.  It was time to clear out, gear up, and organize like crazy.  This last year teaching basically worked me over in the home-keeping department.  As in, it didn't happen.  As in, we just made stacks hoping to get to it a year later.  Like now.  It was awful. Last week was the week to get with it.  And we did in a big way.  I just want to share the fruits of my labor.  
I want to make a few disclaimers here:  
1. You will never ever ever ever ever see a house on my blog that it magazine worthy.  Like ever.  I love knickknacks and bright colors and also with three kids, nothing is ever perfect, or streamlined, or totally clean.  This house is LIVED in.  In my book, display worthy does mean not magazine worthy.
2. I like what I like.  Unapologetically.  
3. I am a surface abuser.  I like my eyes to stay busy when I look around at a lot of happy things.  My soul thrives on it.  If I lived in a sparsely decorated house, I would be depressed and would feel like it had no soul.
4. I KNOW my house looks crazy busy.  I like it that way.
5. We have only ever bought two pieces of furniture in our married life brand new.  Everything else has been thrifted, borrowed, gifted, or pilfered from a trash heap.  True statement.

So now that nobody is expecting perfection and I warned you that your eyes might get assaulted, we can move forward.
Here is my living room.  When we moved in there was just an open area by the fireplace.  Tone built it in and we discussed the size of the area we would make for the TV and how much area I needed for books.  It fits a 50 inch.  We had a 36 inch up until last week.  Apparently, in Tone's mind, clean out meant, go big.  The baskets under the coffee table holds Tessa's pull-ups, shoes and a few baby toys for visiting nieces and nephews and friends.  The rest I gave away.  We store the DVD's in pullout drawers in the cabinets, and it also holds the Xbox and Wii stuff.  I like that stuff to be unseen. I am still searching for a little tapestry footstool to go with my leather chair that my brother in law gifted us.  It's the best reading chair in the world.
 To the right of this picture behind our love seat is a little pull down desk which is kinda the command center for mail, my planner, the laptop, paperwork, etc.  I have my little nook sitting there right now too.  All of that used to reside on the counter top and the piles got ridiculous.  This works much better for me.

 You can see it's sandwiched between the loveseat and the dining table.  We homeschool on that table, eat there, and it's in the center of our house.  Keeping it clean is difficult. I hang our aprons (the kids and I each have one or two) and family pictures from a clothes line across the window.  I've also discovered that messy kids and table tops don't go together so I bought cute vintage plastic placemats. (Oh hey! I spy a lens cap!)
 Hanging next to the window are organizational boxes, our calendar on a clipboard and key holder.  Right now I put paperwork that the kids bring home that are keepsakes.  Such as school papers, programs from events they were in, etc.
 Although as you can see, a few odds and ends have jumped in there too.  Also, I just can't seem to find a better spot for my broom and mop and dustpan.  I use them a trillion times a week it seems and so they just stay in this basket in the corner.  See....a true life lived in house.  Sometimes real life trumps beauty.
 I took the above picture from my entry way shown here below.  The archway with the brown picture collage is the opening to my dining room.  To the right here is the playroom.  We keep our shoes in crates by the door and gloves hang in the bag on the door.  One would think that with shoes right by the door, kids would be easily able to find them.....hahahaha!  That's a good joke.  In what universe are kids EVER able to find their shoes?  The crates always look full and cluttered, but it is what it is with this many people in the household.
 If I am standing in the doorway, I see this below.  Straight ahead is the living room, the right goes to the dining area, and to the left is the playroom and hallway.  Five entry points are going on here.  Five.  This entryway can get piled up so fast I don't even know what happened.  I try to keep that bench paired down, but it's a dumping point and it's hard.  Let's not even talk about the coat pile-up that happens in the winter. Hunter had an old trashcan that he didn't want since it had Cars on it.  I spray painted that thing gold and solved my umbrella dilemma.
 I just put this wall thing together by my doorway this week.  That canvas is covering the alarm system.  Some idiot who designed our house decided to put the alarm right next to the front door window.  So any robber can see whether it's on our not.  I found a few prints I like and hung them up next to it. An embroidered t-shirt that was too small became the bird canvas hoop.
 If you are interested in the prints I you can find them here:
Initial print: You can put in any initial, name and color and print it for free.
Home Sweet Home print: Several color schemes to choose from
CS Lewis Quote: In aqua, "There are far better things ahead than any we leave behind".  From his book, "The Last Battle" in his Chronicles of Narnia series
Hymn print: "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, sweetest name I know.  Fills my every longing, keeps me singing as I go"
I also embroidered a little hoop with our state and a heart where we live in Fresno.  I am pretty tired of seeing Fresno pop up in news stories as being the dirtiest, worst water, horrible economy, most car theft, etc.  We love our city and feel called here and placed to make a difference.  It's not a deterrent to us.  It's a reason to get busy in our city. Fresno, we love you.

I also organized our play room, library, art gallery, music room and school room.  Actually that's all one room off the entry way and has to function as all of the above. It's a tall order for little place. Here are some sneak peaks at what I have going.  I posted these on instagram but have done more since then.

We have also been working on the kid's rooms.  Hunter wants a Hawaiian themed room and Ainsley needed a new dresser.  They aren't finished yet, but we did at least get Hunter's chair rail painted a nice teal. It was striped construction yellow and black from when he had a car themed room which he has outgrown for quite a while now.  He's a big boy he keeps reminding me. More to come on both of those later, but I will not post half-done rooms.  I can't.  I just can't.
So, tell me.  What tricks do you use to keep a busy household running smoothly?  I would love to know.  Most of what I do I've borrowed off of friend's and blogs anyways.  I copycat like nobody's business.
So please, let me in on your secrets.
PS Are your eyes assaulted yet?  Because next up is the playroom.

1 comment:

  1. It's so fun seeing your home! No tricks from me, but I might steal some of your ideas.