Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Make Life Easier Part Dos

I’m pretty sure I told you I’d be back with this last week and then never posted.  Oops.  I’m all about making life easier, but I’m not all about acting like these ideas work 100% of the time.  Is that even reality?

Something I realized last summer is that I don’t have to fit everything inside my house.  I have a huge garage (even though it fills with snow, falling leaves, and grass clippings) that I can use for storage, and it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.IMG_1575

If you have a garage, a shed, a walk-through, or breezeway, don’t be afraid to use that space to store.  It’s been a savior for me. Plus, I got to buy cute containers for the shelf.

IMG_1583Got kids?  Got laundry?  Hate socks as much as I do?  At the beginning of the school year, I go out and purchase all the same socks for my son and all the same socks for my daughter.

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When I do their laundry, I pour all the socks into a basket.  I then go through, throw away any socks with holes, and divide his socks from hers with this little stacking doo-hicky thing.  See all my son’s socks?  Yeah, uhhh…apparently I didn’t need that package I bought yesterday.

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There was a time when I bought all different colored socks or socks with cute little patterns on it to match certain outfits.  That time is over.

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See this little unassuming cabinet?  It’s my best friend.  When my kids became old enough to use the water dispenser on the fridge or get a snack here and there for themselves, I started putting all their cups, plates, and bowls in here.  How much did it change my life?  It’s a tie between this and DVR. IMG_0037

And finally, I know I’ve said this a million times, but I absolutely swear by baskets, containers, buckets, and (of course) labels!IMG_4351   IMG_2231

It separates what could ultimately be a chaotic mess.  Whether it’s art supplies, bathroom products, medicine, or—yes—wrestling gear, having them contained is key.IMG_7012_thumb[3]  IMG_6837_thumb[3]

Oh wait.  One last thing.  Buy a basket (or bucket, etc.) for your toilet paper.  Throw it in there and giggle at the simplicity.  Don’t worry about stacking it or finding a cabinet for it.  IMG_0039 Now, you won’t hear, “Mommmmm! There’s no toilet paper!”  Actually, you’ll still here it.  But now you can just say, “It’s right next to you!” and then giggle some more.

62 comments:

♥Amber Filkins♥ said...

Love all those ideas. I swear by them. I have a basket w/toilet paper in 2 of my bathrooms. No one ever calls for toilet paper from those. The only one they call from is the hall bath, and there will soon be a basket in there. :)

Too much time on my hands said...

Love the sock thing. It is a great idea. My kids go back to school this week and I am going to use your sock storage idea. I am sick of looking for matching socks and sick of the kids yelling where are the socks. Now if you can help with getting them to put them in the washing basket,then you will be a friend for life.

2sisters said...

Thanks for the great ideas! We are currently in a rental, and only have a carport, and boy do I miss my garage! I love the basket idea, I'm sure I have a couple that would work for my bathrooms hanging around!
teri

Franco Fab Five said...

I am going to throw away all of our old socks tomorrow and buy everyone one new package. I am DONE sorting them! Thanks!

Gillian said...

Okay, I LOVE the idea!!! I know I can't do it with my daughter because I am a sock freak with her and have to have matching socks with all her outfits. But the boys! All 3 of them... well, this is going to be my new game plan FOR SURE! You are a genius!

Rachel said...
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Rachel said...

What fabulous ideas!!!!
Love the sock one though, my boys need those in a serious way!

Did you get my email about the tree?

:)Rachel

sorry about my other comment.... I shouldn't type this late. :)

Jess said...

I love the sock basket. And as soon as it warms up I'll be cleaning out the garage. I agree with you, plastic dishes where the kids can help themselves is such a big help. One of the smartest things I've done!

Paige Tyler said...

I am all over that toilet paper deal! Just moved into a home where the bathrooms have no storage and I own a ton of baskets already! THANKS

duchess said...

All great ideas but my favorite is the toilet paper basket - so cute.

Vanessa said...

Awesome ideas! Have a great day!

Dee said...

been doing the sock one for years. it is excellent. have 3 kids and my only addition to it is to draw a big initial on the bottom of each sock so all can tell which sock belongs to whom.
yep to the toilet paper one too. the only time i hear about it now is if i forget to restock...

Jill Elaine said...

Love this post. I'm getting inspired to reorganize our school stuff. I'm into the soup can idea!!

Dixiejet said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dixiejet said...

I've got a large planter in my bathroom for my toilet paper. My bathroom has a Greek motif so this looks great . Been doing this for years now. Wish I could upload a pic of it. :o/

Southern Gal said...

Great ideas! Can't wait to organize all my school supplies this way.

Umm. I love the toilet paper idea, but I have boys. And I would have to store them AWAY from the toilet. Spattered toilet paper would just not do. And believe me. It would be spattered. Yuck.

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

I have wanted that same shelf for the garage...I just don't have the space...this moment. Blush. Which SH!%.

I bow to you.

Reese said...

Love the ideas. Especially the toilet paper! So simple and perfect!

Cindy said...

Thanks for sharing some wonderful easy ideas to help keep things a bit let crazy around the house. Some great little tips.

Hugs,
Cindy
www.homesimplehome.blogspot.com

Mrs Home Sweet Home said...

Your bathroom basket idea just solved my problem! Thanks!! :)

Mrs Home Sweet Home said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tiffany said...

Great ideas! I love the soup cans. We have a rule at our house that everyone needs to safety pin their socks together when they take them off and put them in the laundry. That way, I never have to match socks. Those who choose not to pin, get to dig through baskets or go barefoot!

Ruth said...

I love everything you shared here. Each picture you shared is great. I am not good at organizing and I really need to get more containers that can help keep things in their places.

Ruth

Richella said...

These ideas really are simple--and they're simply brilliant. I need someone like you in my life. . . someone to come up with organization ideas and pass them along. Because i would certainly never come up with them on my own! Thank you for sharing your strength.

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

My hubby put up storage rack shelving in our garage years ago. When our kids were younger we used to go to Costco or Sam's Club and this shelving came in so handy for that bulk stuff. We don't shop there anymore, but when I get a good deal on stuff at the supermarket I'll stock up and put the extra out in the garage.

Love the toilet paper in the basket idea, but they still won't put it on the roller, will they? : ) Apparently, I am the only one I know that knows how to put a fresh roll of tp on the roller! No one does it at work either!

1 Funky Woman said...

Luv some of your ideas. I have been purging my house and trying to come up with easy solutions for my kids crap, so thank you, you helped a lot!

Megan

Home's Where My Heart Is said...

Such wonderful ideas, thank you so much! I'm a big fan of re-purposing items, so when I saw how you used cans for pens I became inspired to find other things around my house I can use them for.

Have a great day!

Lisa said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THIS !!!

HUGS FROM MAINE

Rayna said...

I love the basket for toilet paper! I'm loving all your organization ideas!It's always a goal of mine to be and get organized.

springrose said...

I used to do that with the TP until my 3 year old was potty trained recently. I found a basket full of peed on TP! Yuck!! So my basket had to be thrown away and I will get another one when his aim gets better!!! Love the ideas. Where do you get all those cute labels for your baskets?

Just Kids said...

Great Ideas. I wanted to tell you that I took your advice on paint. I bought the Benjamin moore wood and metal and painted my dining room table. You'll have to check it out. Thank you for all of your ideas.

Becky said...

I am in love with all of your organization ideas. Where did you get the patterned round labels? They are too cute! I love your blog!

Dream Mom said...

Putting all of the kids eating containers in one cabinet is genius! My son is disabled so it never occurred to me to put all of his stuff in one area because he can't access it himself but I love that everything is together, mainly because those odd containers make the other cabinets look messy.

I've done the sock thing for years. I always buy one type of sock like that, makes life easier. I also went a step further when he was young-I'd pick three colors and buy all his clothes in those three colors at the beginning of the season-then everything matched and went with everything else.

Misty said...

Seriously...just move to Tennessee. I need you closer to my life! I will put in a good word with our Director of Schools.

You are so clever!!!

Anita said...

Wow...this post is full of awesome ideas! Thank you so much for sharing! :)

emily @ helpemilylose.blogspot.com said...

I adore those jars with the metal lids! And they sell them at WalMart!

Vindiciti said...

Great ideas! LOVE it! Sock storage is brilliant. I, too, buy all the same brand per kid. They've got the color on the toes to tell my socks (pink) from older boys' socks (same size, blue) from younger socks (green). Luckily, for now, my daughter's are too tiny to be confused with mine! The only thing left is Dad's unmarked or Army green socks.

I love the TP idea, but couldn't do that. The TP would end up unusable. Apparently, my boys never learned to pee DOWN! Ugh!

Rachelle said...

I'd love to have a basket for TP, however the youngest would just consider it fair game to rip all up, or shove it all in the toilet at once.

Becky said...

Thank you for sharing your wonderful ideas! I can't wait to get organizing. :) Darling blog!

Country Dreaming said...

Containers, baskets, buckets,boxes etc are wonderful inventions for the organized challenged.
Great ideas.

Melinda

mary'smom said...

Love all your ideas. My daughter will be 13 in a couple of weeks. She received this neat basket thing at Christmas from an Auntie. I throw all her socks in there after they are clean. She has to match them up. Got sick of it.

Jamie said...

I love how your organization includes cute containers & tags. I am working on that. These are some great ideas!

Steph said...

Please come organize my house! I love all the great ideas!

Robin said...

I love the toilet paper basket! I have an empty basket right now in my 1/2 bath and I know what it needs now :-)
Thanks!!!
Also love the tags on the your containers. I need to add tags to mine...I have little buckets and cans with all kinds of things in them!

pollydove said...

I have a really great "tp" basket in my powder room and it works so well! (Guests don't ever get stuck "without" as well!)

I just came across your blog, read quite a few posts and think you are fabulous! I love your sense of humor ... great photos too!

Melanie said...

Don't you just organzing? It makes me so happy to have everything in its place. Great ideas, thanks.

Lynda @ SportsMadGirl said...

Love the TP basket idea. I will have to get one for the guest bath. Thanks for all the great organizing ideas.

Melissa Miller said...

I enjoyed seeing all of your inspiring organization Chris!

~AWESOME! *Smiles*

Danielle said...

Fantabulous ideas!!! There is nothing quite like the feeling of having a clean and de-cluttered garage. I'll keep coming back to look at yours until mine is...

Girl with the Curlz said...

You have such great ideas. I love those baskets on your shelf in the garage. Adorable!! With a baby coming soon I need your help you organizing expert. Do you hire out? (tee-hee)

Knudsen's said...

Where did you get those darling paisley baskets? I'm decorating my at-home hair salon and they would be perfect for the space! Thanks. Camille

cait said...

I love your ideas! I'm crazy about using baskets to organize as well. My husband and I use the chrome shelving in our unfinished basement to store all of that extra "stuff" that doesn't need a home upstairs. Thanks for the extra inspiration! :)

VintageFokus said...

Great ideas...now where to start???

:)

www.vintagefokus.blogspot.com

MaryRC said...

girl after my wanna be organized heart, but it doesnt look as cute when i do it..

Kara@ Creations by Kara said...

Love your organizing ideas! I use several of them, but I've never thought to put my boys' cups down low. Genius! I've gotta try it.

The Tucker's said...

I've been wondering what brand that picnic basket is? I know you had said in a previous post it was from TJ Maxx but i live in hawaii and dont have one of those here so i was hoping to find one online. thanks
carrie

Kristen said...

I would call you out on that garage shelf (you know that picture is far from reality right now, even though it is the same picture that made me realize that we are long lost BFF's) But I won't. I know you're in mourning right now so I'll let this one slide.

Evy said...

Love all the ideas, especially the one with the toilet paper - it's so easy and chic! Oh, and the labels are amazingly cute.

I love what you have done with the blog (been a while since my last visit)! You never cease to amaze me with all that inspiration that flows from the pages.

Carri said...

I love these ideas. When we move and hopefully have space I hope to implement a few of these ideas. Thanks for sharing them. Come check out my blog www.carribear0620.blogspot.com

Jenny @ Anything Pretty said...

Great ideas! Thanks for sharing!

Gina said...

brilliant. love.

sanjeet said...

I'm sure I have a couple that would work for my bathrooms hanging around!

Work from home India

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