There is definitely a reason this blog is called Just Parents, No Superheroes Here. I’m no one special. I’m no superhero. I’m just a mom trying to survive the day to day craziness of parenthood. I feel like it’s impossible to keep an organized, clean, clutter free house when you have kids. I seriously feel like I spend the majority of my day, everyday trying to get my house clean. It’s a never ending struggle. I can leave a clean room and within 20 minutes my kids tear it apart.
I don’t have an answer to the problem of the never ending cleaning process but I can share the organization hacks that I use to help keep my home clutter free.
One thing to know about me… I’m pretty cheap when it comes to most everything. I try and repurpose items and reuse when decorating and I really try to work with what I already have on hand when organizing. Of course occasionally you have to purchase a basket or bin.
I don’t think there is anything too special about these organizing tips but hopefully they give someone an idea they might be able to run with. I actually just walked around my house and took pictures of anything I use to help organize an area of my house. You are getting a look into some of the messier areas of my home (should I be embarrassed?) Here’s what I got:
This shelf has been a lifesaver for storing toys in our family room. This particular shelf is from Ikea but similar items are available from many different companies. The square compartments and buckets work well to keep clutter hidden. You can either throw everything in for a quick clean up or organize the buckets with specific bins for specific toys. We have 3 bins with random larger toys and 3 organized bins (one for cars, one for instruments, one for puzzles)
I have a bookshelf with all of my children’s books but there isn’t a great place for the really small baby books. this bucket works great because I can move it to the floor or a different room to give my little guy better access.
Old food containers work great for building toys with lots of little pieces. these are pretzel and animal cracker buckets.
Big bins like these are great for those little random toys that don’t really have a place. When I pick up little toys lying around the house I just throw them in here for an easy clean up. You can see the bin in the picture with the white shelf. Its cute and has a lid to hide the inside. Its not pictured here but I also have a larger white metal bin like this full of blankets for lounging. These bins are from Ikea
We pulled our couch away from the wall 1-2 feet. This allows us to store the big bright bulky toys behind the couch. they are mostly hidden from view, but easy for kids to pull out and play with.
Our old house had a basement and in that basement we had an entire bookcase dedicated to DVDs and blue rays . Our currents house has one level and nowhere to store movies. I know Hard copies of movies are going out of style but I’m just not ready to give them all up. This was my compromise and it was a great solution. The small case has the kids movies, the large case has all the rest of our movies. We don’t use them often so its great that they can stay tucked in a corner and out of the way until we need them.
I use to just have piles of papers all over my kitchen and office. I’m not going to say I don’t still have a huge pile of paper. I can say that I only have one and it’s in a basket that sits on my office desk. As you can see it needs to be gone through, but having one designated place for all those random papers and mail has significantly reduced the amount of paper lying around my house. I am better at throwing away what I don’t need immediately and those things I want to look at or file later have a place to go.
This is a thread spool holder. It can sit on a table but I command stripped it to the wall. This nifty organizer helps keep my necklaces untangled and off the dresser. Eventually I would like to paint it and make a decorative wall feature of this and a few other items like an earring holder and cute decoration but that is a seriously low priority. For now at least my necklaces are off the table, easy to find, and easy to use.
If you have the hanging space, boot hangers are a great way to help organize the closet. By hanging your boots not only does it help your boots keep their shape but it opens floor space for a low shoe rack or other items
Every closet in my house has a plastic organization bin. I have a decent size closet but it doesn’t have shelves, but rather four long hanging rods. I use this bin for the clothing I wouldn’t hang like work out clothes, underwear and such. It also gives me a little shelf for some small items. The skinnier bins on my kids closets have socks, hats, gloves, etc in them (the things that get lost on the dresser).
Yes this is an under shelf rack, usually used in a kitchen cabinet. I had to zip-tie the back up so it would stay level and in place but now it works great for all my husband’s little exercise equipment.
I have this funky drawer in my vanity. It only opens about 8 inches even though it is deeper then that. I use a lot of dollar store bins for organizing bathroom cabinets and office desks. Both these smaller trays and shoe size buckets are great for organizing all the little items that go in drawers and cabinets
I didn’t have a good place for my spices. I could have put them in a kitchen cabinet but its hard to find what you are looking for when they are stored that way. I bought a very inexpensive spice rack and put it in my pantry. These can also go on the inside of a door if you don’t have wall space.
My kids use these water bottles for their everyday hydration needs. They end up all over my house. I’d love to say they always put them back when they are done drinking but that would be a big fat lie. At least now when I say “go put your water away” they have a designated place to take it. this little wire bin was purchased in the $3 section from Target. I used command hooks to hang it. This simple idea has been a lifesaver for my sanity. I was sick of having water bottles all over my house with no good place to put them that all my kids could easily reach.
This command center has been great to have in my kitchen. I’ve got somewhere for my diaper bag so its not lying on the floor or taking counter space. There is a magazine holder where I put current bills and coupons, 3 clipboards for checklists of other important papers. a ‘to do’ list, a ‘to buy’ list (I use this when i’m cooking and run out of something. I immediately right it down here so I can look back at it when writing my grocery list) There is also a calendar and bulletin board for displaying cards and invitations.