Wednesday 14 November 2018

Getting Your Family Home Organised

For some reason, the winter always feels more chaotic in my house. In the summer, we spend enough time outside that inside either stays relatively tidy or I’m just not indoors enough to witness the mess. In winter, however, when the dark evenings and cold weather leave us cooped up after school, the house gets untidy. As I type this, there is a pile of jigsaw pieces in the middle of the living room floor, a collection of children’s books dumped next to the designated book box, and the mantelpiece is full of things waiting to go upstairs. Add to that, the fact that we have an empty bedroom waiting to be decorated upstairs and a playroom upturned thanks to a pre-Christmas sort out and, well, you get the picture.

I found this article about time management in the Guardian really interesting, and it definitely struck a few chords with me. I am forever losing things and while I often blame this on things not having a place, usually it’s just that things have got lost amidst the clutter. School shoes, bobbles, white polo shirts and all homework just seem to disappear in our house. Inspired by the Guardian article, I wanted to share some ideas for how to get your family home organised, these are all things we have done or are planning to do:

1. Invest in some decent toy storage
Toys just get everywhere, don’t they? One thing I have found that makes this much easier to handle is everywhere having a place. And not an artfully chosen place on a designated shelf to ensure your home is always Instagram ready, but a place kids can reach to tidy away their own stuff. I hate the mess that my toddler can make, but I also love her having the freedom to choose and get out her own toys. I don’t want to put things out of her reach or put myself in charge of what she plays with. I want her to have control when it comes to her things. Storage baskets are the answer. You need to have storage baskets or boxes for everything so they can be tipped out but tidied away just as easily.

2. Don’t pretend it’s all the kids’ faults
If I look around my house, I can see as much of my mess as I can of the kids. I just seem to have so much stuff, and even though I know where it should go, it can take a long time to actually get there. We pretty much always have a bag of crap in the kitchen just waiting to go upstairs. The mantelpiece in the living room is full of things that should have been taken upstairs. And don’t even open the door to my office unless you’re feeling emotionally ready to see chaos. When I do eventually take things upstairs, I usually just dump them on the desk in my office because I don’t have the time to sort them out just yet. I really need to start making the time.

I have decided to create some designated areas for Crap That Should Be Upstairs and Crap That Needs Sorting Out. A couple of wicker baskets in the living room and kitchen would be enough to make a huge difference both to the space and to my stress levels.

3. Work your way through your home
All I really want is to feel like my house is nice when I first come in. If the entrance hall feels cosy and welcoming then I forgive the textured wallpaper (I can’t, I will never forgive it, it needs to come down). My worst thing is walking into an untidy hallway. We haven’t decorated the hallway, stairs or landing yet but I know we will at some point in the future (maybe before I am 60, fingers crossed) so it’s not an area I want to spend much money on in the short-term. We do have coat hooks but we could do with a couple of extras low down so that Ember has somewhere to hang her coat when she gets in. We are also in desperate need of shoe storage to try and stop shoes from spilling out all over the house.

So, start at your front door and work your way through your home making organisational improvements as you go. Doing it this way will allow you to immediately see your hard work paying off, and it will make coming home even nicer. Take a look at The Holding Company to see if any of their products could help to revolutionise your home.   

If you have any tips that might help me get my life in order, please do share them with me.

This is a collaborative post.

Photo by Lesly Juarez on Unsplash

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