Hey, friends! I have been on an organizational BINGE around here. Cleaning out closets, purging, donating, sorting, organizing and everything in between. I always get bit by the "organization bug" right after Christmas when I start putting decorations and kids gifts and everything else away and this year it bit HARD.
I blogged about organization back in December, but kind of phoned it in a bit because I really hadn't spent any amount of time organizing since it was like the day after Christmas. I was too busy polishing off all the appetizers and filling my cream cheese quota for the season :)
First up is our pantry...
PLEASE keep in mind that we don't keep our fresh fruits, veggies, etc in our pantry. And yes... my kids eat macaroni and fruit snacks. ;) hahaha
A while ago I found these containers at Homegoods and loved the size and how they sealed and opened easily. We had all kinds of crackers, snacks, etc. in all kinds of boxes and bags and it was hard to keep organized and hard to see how much of each item was left. This way I can see exactly what I have with just a glance.
There's a little handle that you flip up to unseal it and remove the lid and then when you put the lid back on you just put the handle back down and it seals.
I LOVE these baskets because they look like rattan but since they're resin I can wipe them down if something spills. Perfect for the kitchen. I keep lunch box snacks in them, canned goods, etc.
School snacks and chips...
... bread and other odds and ends (and yes... that's pasta roni... no shame. hahaha Sometimes you just need an easy side!)
I keep most of my baking supplies in glass jars I picked up at Wal-Mart and I've had them for years and still love them.
More baking stuff and then cereal below (we eat a lot of cereal!!!)
I didn't take a great picture of them, but there are three big baskets at the top where I keep papaer plates, cups, napkins, serving pieces, etc.
On the floor I keep a basket for our YumBoxes and my lunch box, the dog food, some extra cereal (told you we love cereal!), trash bags, etc. It's kind of hard to see, but we also keep a broom and dust pan, the swiffer and the Bona floor cleaner mop in here as well. It works for us.
And here's what our pantry looks like a lot of the time...
... that's her "are you watching me sneak these corn puffs???" face :)
And because nothing brings the boys faster than the sound of a rustling package. hahaha
I picked up a couple of these acrylic drawer organizers and got the kitchen desk drawer organized as well. This is the place where kids go to grab pencils and such for homework (that they typically do at the kitchen table) and has helped us avoid the "I'm just running upstairs to get a pencil and now I'm playing Legos in my room" problem :) We do Box Tops for the kids classes and my parents and Dave's mom saves them for us as well. It's a contest at school and my boys keep them for a few months and then turn them all in at the same time. It didn't take them long to figure out that if they held onto them and turned them in all at the same time they were more likely to win :) #smartboys
Our "junk drawer" in the laundry room was extra junky and so I got an organizer for that drawer as well. All the typical junk drawer stuff is now neat and tidy. Amen.
The other area that got a bit of an overhaul was our office "craft closet". I've talked several times about how I like to use containers I had on hand to store supplies - and while they were absolutely fine - as my kids have gotten bigger and more independent they were helping themselves to a lot of the supplies and when we had a glass container get dropped and shattered I decided to rethink some of my storage in this space.
This was before...
... and this is now...
I pared things down and then used dollar store containers (the blue bins), stack and carry containers and a few others different sizes to get everything organized.
The blue bins on the top have party supplies (balloons, cellophane bags, etc) and a little stash of bday gifts for the kids friends (those Pokemon books!).
The next shelf has glue and paint, a stack of scrapbook paper, the white container has foam sheets and then miscellaneous supplies are in these containers).
I liked how they weren't too big (so I could put a single type of item in them and not feel like I was wasting space), but also that I could take single containers out (unlike a drawer) and bring them to wherever we needed.
See??? Thin, but still big enough to hold the glue gun and extra glue sticks without a ton of wasted space. Love!
My favorite containers are these stack and carry ones.
It's great for getting supplies out and bringing them to the table and keeping everything neat and tidy.
The top of this container has the kids beads and the bottom has their paint.
When we're using the beads I can remove that section and leave the paint or I could put the lid on the paint section and carry that to the table. Easy!
The other one holds ribbons and burlap...
... and smaller versions hold little supplies that the kids use when they do crafts.
This last one holds smaller bits and pieces that are things that mainly I use (safety pins, etc.)
The left side of the closet looks similar to how it looked before... spray paint, acrylic paints, note cards and stationary, wrapping supplies, etc.
The right side has filing supplies, a little stash of things I'm going to use for my classroom next year and the printer.
On the second to last shelf in the middle I put the paper in these bins... one is full of construction paper and the other various cardstock, labels, etc. The kids had a bad habit of coming in here and grabbing paper and I'm hoping this deters them from doing that and steers them to our scratch paper stash in the kitchen desk :)
On the very bottom shelf are mailing supplies and then on the floor we have a file box for mail and records and then the cardboard box holds gift bags.
Here's the best part... I happened to find all of these containers when I popped into a local discount store to grab posterboard for an assignment Mason had to do for class. I paid $6.50 for the large stack and carries and under $3 for all the other containers. It was a total steal. If you have a Big Lots near you I STRONGLY suggest that you check them out!!!
The desk drawers in my office got a little clean out as well. I have no shame in admitting that this one was full of papers and other miscellaneous junk that didn't need to be in there and now it holds a couple of pairs of scissors, a lighter, notebooks and the little pad where I keep up with blog posts for the upcoming weeks.
The other drawer is just basic office type supplies and stamps.
The last area that I'm going to show you is something that I've never shown before and is actually the answer to one of the most frequently asked questions I receive... where on EARTH do you store all your holiday decorations???
In our old house we kept everything in our attic which was a pulldown and a PAIN IN THE BUTT to access. Here we have a HUGE walk-in attic off our second floor and it is glorious! Here's a little peek...
The entire thing has a floor and all of my holiday decor is stored in tubs along one side arranged by season. (yes... I'm aware of how ridiculous that sounds. hahaha) At the very back is where we keep the Christmas trees. Those two blue bins in the middle are "memory bins" where I throw things that I want to keep for the kids as they grow up... teeny baby onesies, school artwork, the tassels from their kindergarten graduations, etc. Mason and G are currently sharing one, but at some point I'll pick up a third and that will be the one bin I keep for each of them (or at least that's the plan). This is what my parents did for me and I love sharing the things from my bin (like my troll doll and sticker book) with my kids. Right now the school papers and art are just stacked inside the boxes... I label them with their name, school year and date and only keep their (or my!) favorite art, their creative writing, etc.
The other side of the attic has the same amount of storage and that's where we have the normal random attic stuff (a djembe drum, all the Thomas the Train stuff I plan on keeping for grandkids (aaaah!!!), etc.). We also have a full third story attic that's a pull down, but we don't have any plans to use that.
This attic has been SO NICE because it's more like a storage room than an attic... I can go in there, open up boxes and pull things out as needed rather than having to haul all the boxes down. When I sort through their school work at the end of the day it's a breeze to just walk in here and pop whatever we're keeping in the box. It's been wonderful!
So... there you have it!!! Is it just me or does having a freshly organized space make you feel like you can conquer the world? ;) Do you have the urge to go organize #allthethings??? I'd love to hear your organizational tips and tricks OR what you have a hard time keeping organized in the comments.
Happy Tuesday, friends!!!
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