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Posts Tagged ‘organization’

I like our house. It’s a cute little 60’s ranch with some recent upgrades and unique features. However, it does have a few flaws, one of which is a severe lack of closet and cabinet space on the main level. The basement has great storage, but I can’t exactly run down there all the time for daily necessities, so we’ve done our best to smartly utilize the space we have and only keep what we need at hand. This week, Bart and I installed two different yet similar storage solutions to add some functionality, and I think we’ve definitely hit on some winners.

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Happy Labor Day, everyone! I hope you are all enjoying your last official hoorah of summer. Bart and I debated what to do over the long weekend…should we go somewhere and do something exciting, or should we work to finish one of our ongoing projects at home? Eventually we decided to tackle a new project, replacing a light fixture downstairs. Four days, five sheets of drywall, a trip to Ikea, multiple gallons of joint compound, and a pile of demolition debris later, we still haven’t quite gotten our new light fixture installed.

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Our ninth month of living in our house ultimately involved very little actual living in our house. Between our two recent trips, we’ve only been there half of the last six weeks, but we’ve still managed to squeeze in a few projects here and there.
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As one might imagine, moving two times in eleven months is not conducive to staying very organized. All our worldly possessions lived in and out of boxes during our move and our time renting. When we bought our house, we initially found temporary homes for all our stuff and boxes, but the process has been very slow. However, since we moved, and particularly since the beginning of spring, we have been on an organizational tear. From craft supplies to tools, spices to paperwork, Bart and I have been taming the beast and getting back to an efficient and functional household.

One of my ongoing projects is dealing with all the paperwork. Starting a new job, registering cars in two states, and buying, selling, and renting homes generates a mountain of paperwork that piles up in the blink of an eye. I managed to stay afloat until we made our final move, but was clear that our files needed a major intervention. My method of filing paperwork for many years was to use hanging files in a dedicated file drawer. I had a folder for each utility and financial account and for other categories like health records, receipts for big purchases, and school info. This worked pretty well, but with a big life change some of the files were a bit outdated–for instance, we have new utility providers and I no longer am in school–and it was time for a refresh.

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As you probably recall from my copious expositions on the subject, our house is a little tight on main level storage space. We have limited closets, no coat closet at all, and less kitchen cabinet space than our previous house. Thankfully, our downstairs area has a storage pantry, a cedar closet for coats, a kitchenette, and a large unfinished utility area perfect for stashing stuff like luggage and holiday decor. We’ve been able to redistribute some stuff from upstairs to downstairs, but we still needed a couple of clever storage solutions to keep our most used items–particularly coats and kitchen toys–at hand instead of trekking down the stairs 50 times a day. Fortunately, we struck storage gold last week thanks to one opportune shopping trip, some Swedish ingenuity, and a couple of evenings with a screw driver.

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