My Biggest Organization Challenges

Yes, I feel silly posting about organizing our stuff when so many in the Houston area have lost EVERYTHING. But then again, pretty much everything I tried to write about felt stupid, so we’ll just go with this. If you haven’t already, please consider donating MONEY (not stuff) to a cause you love. The Red Cross is a great idea if you don’t already have a charity in mind or you can go to Preemptive Love Coalition (my FAVORITES) as they are on the ground there as well.. Go do that first and then read my post about organizing stuff. No seriously, I’ll wait . . . 

Every household has those one or two places that, no matter how many times they get organized, no matter how many systems are set in place, no matter how many threats are made, falls back into . . .chaos.

Yes, storage and organization is kind of my jam. Not kind of. It IS. But even here, at Chez Lefforge, we have a couple problem spots. Lately, my darling husband whom I adore has been home much more than normal and he, how shall we say it delicately??

DOESN’T GIVE A FLYING RAT’S BEHIND ABOUT ORGANIZATION

Picture to prove I really do love this man despite his lack or organizational passion.

Which can make things challenging for me, his beautiful and adoring bride.

So where are these spots and what do we do about them??

The most common dumping grounds for our family are the kitchen table and the laundry room. And I don’t think we’re alone as I’ve had lots of you tell me these are difficult areas for your family as well.

Let’s tackle the kitchen table first.

It’s problematic because everyone dumps their stuff there when they first come in the door, so the first trick is to give them somewhere else to dump their stuff! For me, this meant, just today, emptying out an entire cupboard in our family room just for my darling husband’s belonging that seem to pile there like a steaming pile of . . . my husband’s stuff.

Before and after! I didn’t dare go through all that crap. He has a bin now in a cupboard nearby. So all this is there. Otherwise he’ll accuse me of hiding it. And yes, that’s a belt. On the kitchen table. Because of course.

You HAVE to police this are DAILY if not several times per day. I use the “touch it once” method for mail most of the time, but when I don’t, mail tends to pile up here and get lost. Which is why when I went to use my Target red card the other day it was declined. I was sure it was their fault. NOPE. I FORGOT TO PAY MY BILL. Don’t be me. If you can’t deal with bills right away, at least give them a home (or go completely electronic and put your Target card on automatic payment to avoid awkward moments in your favorite store).

OK, on to Laundry Room!

I literally just tackled this room today so I will post delightful before and after pictures.

Gross.

The trick here is quite complex so focus really hard and make sure the room is clear of distractions:

  1. Throw out or re-locate all the crap that shouldn’t be in there
  2. Set up a system for what has to be in there
  3. Maintain weekly (if not more)

Voila!!

Since all 3 of my kids do their own laundry, this room gets A LOT of action every day of the week. It can become a pig pen remarkably quickly. BUT since I have a system already in place, when things DO get out of hand, it takes me only minutes to set it right. Today I cheated slightly as I bought new bins on the dryer to coordinate with the big one on the washer. Another great tip is to put stuff on the washer and dryer so that stuff can’t be put on top of the washer and dryer. You think I’m kidding. This is the only way to keep people from dumping stuff here.

Really, the 3 steps above for the laundry room work for everywhere in your home, and I realize if you don’t already have systems set up, that step 2 can be quite a chore. But if you think logically about how you use the space and what you need at your fingertips and what can be stored in cabinets or in another room, you really will find yourself with a usable and PLEASANT space.

Do you have other areas that just don’t seem to stay neat and organized?? I would love to hear about them!! We all struggle with it and others may benefit from your wisdom!! Happy Organizing!

Jen

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