Tag Archives: Home Organization

School/Art Work Organization

21 May

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Everyday, I am amazed at the amount of schoolwork and artwork my children bring home! The more children you have, the quicker it accumulates! It can be overwhelming! What to keep? Where to keep it? If you don’t have a system for storing it, it can get out of hand quickly!

Here are some quick tips and a storage solution, I think will work for everyone!

Step One – Discard Daily

When my kids get home, the first thing I do (after hugs) is go through their backpacks. I set aside important papers, display their artwork, and discard what does not need to be kept. Discarding your child’s work needs to happen daily, so it does not pile up and clutter your living space. Lets be honest, some school work or artwork comes home and you immediately know you will not keep it. Let it go. However, be sneaky, because hell hath no fury like a kid that finds their work in the trash!

Step Two – Display for a Month

Children love to have their work praised and displayed! I think it is a must to have a few places in your home where you can display your child’s work. Then when your display areas get crowded, it is time to discard or store.

Step Three – Discard

DO NOT keep everything! I know their little scribbles and handprints are adorable, but you do not need 20 or 50 of them. Keep the best, the ones you love, the ones that remind you of your child at this age, and let the rest go.

Step Three – Store It

The items that are not discarded should be labeled with your child’s name and age, then stored. I created art boxes, with the intention that this will be where all of their important papers are stored.

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In the past, I tried smaller boxes and binders. The small boxes filled up too quickly. The binders were overwhelming in another way. I realized that one binder, per child, per year was going to add up quickly. Then, where was I going to store all those binders?

So I found these extra large file storage boxes at The Container Store and I love them! It does seem a little large now, but I have tons of room to grow! As I said, my intention is that this will be where I store all of their important papers, artwork, report cards, programs, pictures, etc… so I need plenty of room!

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The box has a file folder for each year. I plan to add folders for each extra curricular activity, clubs, camps, etc…

Step Four – Review It

There are two times you may want to review and discard again if needed. The first is at end of the school year. Take this opportunity to flip through the contents of the file for the current year and evaluate if everything needs to be kept. This is a great time to see if there are any duplicates and let the extras go!

The second, is every five years. Take a minute to go back through the files for previous years and eliminate again if needed! Remember that you are keeping your favorites!

I am so excited to have a place for all the kids papers and pictures! Contact me if you want one too!

 

Spring Cleaning Challenge

2 Apr

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Spring is here! Finally! It is my favorite time of the year, the days are longer and warmer! I am always ready to pack away the coats and boots and pull out the shorts and sandals!

Spring cleaning has always been one of my favorite activities, it is so therapeutic to me! It is like a fresh start to a new year. A time to shake off winter and prepare for summer!

I have to say the more I organize for clients the less organized my own home seems, busy… busy. I typically organize based on frustration. You know that feeling you get when you cannot find what you are looking for or when a drawer will not shut. For instance, the current state of my tupperware drawer. So I made a list of ten things that have been bothering or frustrating me and I am going to tackle them in April!

Here is a peak at my list…

1. Playroom

2. Clean Out Refrigerator

4. Nightstand Drawer

5. Tupperware Drawer

6. Switch Seasonal Clothing

7. Windows

8. Air Registers

9. Clean Out Cars

10. Clean Out Kitchen Drawer

 

First project… the playroom!

I think this explains why I don’t spend much time cleaning or organizing the playroom…

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This is totally my house, now that my littlest one is on the move! My son’s favorite thing to do is get things out. I put everything up and he has the best time getting it all back out! Stinker…

I removed the rug, all the large toys, and furniture. Then gave the floor and baseboards a good scrub. Then I did a basic sort and purge of the toys. My little one is about to turn one, so time to make room for new toys.

It will only be a matter of days before it is a mess again, but in the meantime it looks so nice… Ahh!

 

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Before and After

21 Jan

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I absolutely love a house with lots of storage to play in! Give me your pantries, utility closets, and mudrooms! I love them all! No joke! Here is a before and after of a utility closet that had become a place to store odds and ends! This lovely closet just needed some structure and a quick 30 minute clean-out!

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And the after… oh yes!

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The blue bins are from the Dollar Store… gotta love it! I also used a small white trash can from the Dollar Store to hold the rolls of wrapping paper! The stacking bins for gift wrapping supplies are from the Container Store, as is the cleaning supply caddy. The bins contain cleaning supplies, tools, paint, light bulbs, bug spray, etc…

Fabulous! If this was my closet, I would just stand and stare at it!

15 Minute Organization

9 Jan

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So my recent organization dilemma was paper clutter… in the kitchen.

I don’t have a ton of counter space and even if I did, I hate piles of paper in the kitchen.

Here is what it looked like…

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This lovely little pile included; my planner, my son’s paperwork from his doctor appointment, my daughters school folder, my to do list, etc. All piled up on the end of my counter, ugh! I needed a place in the kitchen where I could store these items.

We have two junk drawers in our kitchen. One, stores pens, pads, batteries, and miscellaneous items. The other, a real junk drawer. It started out as a drawer for my husband, a place where I could put his things that were left on the counter. In the end, it just became a real JUNK drawer!

Here is the proof…

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See how random… a broken watch, my husbands baby photos, chargers, lip gloss, outlet covers, cat medicine, random papers, you name it! Talk about embarrassing, but remember this was my husband’s drawer!

So I decided to use this drawer as my little kitchen office, of sorts…

1. First, I emptied the drawer. Of which, 90% of the contents were just trash. Then, I relocated the other items.

2. I bought scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby. Using the paper as drawer liner, I used double stick tape to adhere it to the drawer. See? So much better!

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3. Then I purchased clear drawer organizers from Container Store, for under $15.

4. Finally, I just loaded all my things back into the drawer and voila!

15 minutes and under $20 dollars!

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Here is a list of what I keep in this drawer… my planner, a notebook, my journal of kids quotes and stats (where I jot things down about them), my menu planner, chargers, pens/pencils, and to do list pads.

I also keep any papers, forms, to do items in this drawer. This way, I will see them daily and remember to complete them! I have a home office, but this allows me to keep the things I need in the kitchen and not have to look at the cluttered counter top. Problem solved!

Merry Christmas!

26 Dec

Merry Christmas from Leigh Lusk Living!

I don’t know about you but there is something about the day after Christmas that gives me the urge to organize. It could be the influx of new toys and clothes that my children receive or just the fact that the busy holiday season is coming to an end and I am ready to get my life back in order! First up, organizing for next Christmas!

Oh that is right, already thinking about next year! I decided it was time for a Christmas binder! You know a place where you can make notes about everything you did during the Christmas season and things you want to do next year.

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This is a very simple project and costs less that $20.00.

What you will need:

1. White Three Ring Binder

2. Printouts from Etsy (See Link Below)

3. Dividers from Office Supply Store

4. Washi Tape

5. Label Maker or Marker

First, I ordered the printables from a shop on Etsy. They cost $10.00 and it was worth every penny! One day, I would love to make my own… but no time for that this year!

Here is the link to the set of printouts I purchased: https://www.etsy.com/listing/162839386/editable-christmas-planner-chevron-pdf?ref=shop_home_active&ga_search_query=Christmas%2BPlanner

I like using a regular white binder with pockets, so that I can slip in pictures of possible gifts and receipts for returns. My first page is a calendar for the month of December, followed by categories for Gifts, Food, Decor, Traditions, and Christmas Cards.

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I bought plain white Office Depot brand dividers for about $2.99. I covered the dividers with green Washi tape, also from Office Depot. Then I used my label maker for the categories!

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The last step is just to select and fill in the printables that you want for your binder!

In my Gift section, I have a sheet for each member in my immediate family, a sheet for the extended family, and a sheet for friends, neighbors, and teachers.

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I love the Food section, because you can list everything you made and the recipe for each item! You can even keep your grocery shopping list in here and update it each year! Who wants to be in the grocery store on Christmas Eve? Not me!

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In my Decor section, I list gift wrap essentials and what I need for next year. Shopping for 2014 should be a breeze! I do a lot of shopping in November when our Christmas stuff is still in the attic. I hate guessing if we still have wrapping paper or ribbon. I almost always buy what we do not need and forget what we do need!

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The Traditions section, has a place for current traditions and traditions to try in the future. It also has a sheet for projects, this is great when you have children!

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Lastly, the Christmas Card section. This section is my favorite! I keep our address list for the cards and I keep a record of how many we order each year. I will especially appreciate this next year, because I did not order enough this year!

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This little beauty will stay in my office, so hopefully I can write down gift ideas all year long. Christmas 2014 will be a breeze! Ha! I doubt it, but it is worth a try if it will make Christmas simple!

Laundry Room Love

2 Dec

So the laundry room may not be one of your favorite rooms in the house, but it needs love too! I totally believe in decorating the laundry room and well as organizing it! This sweet client has a fabulous laundry room!

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Adding a basket or tray to the top of the washer or dryer to store your most frequently used items is one of my favorite laundry room tips! This is storage solution has real benefits

1. It fills the space, and keeps clutter from building up on top of the machine.

2. It keeps all of your items at your fingertips.

3. It looks fabulous and it is inexpensive. This basket was $12.99 from TJMax!

Ready for a little before and after… check it out!

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Something about an organized laundry room, just screams life made simple… 

Playroom Love!

28 Jul

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I just absolutely love organizing a playroom! Why? Well, because you have all the beautiful items you need to stage and accessorize! Just think of all your child’s toys as accessories to your design!

After Corner

I loved organizing this playroom for this sweet little girl! The room already had three great things going for it!

Number 1. They already had two great storage units, all I had to do was combine them for a more cohesive look!

Number 2. They had a little desk in the room, which was easy to convert to a little art desk! It just needed to be uncovered.

Number 3. Plenty of closet room! Doesn’t everyone need just a little more closet room? However, in most homes the playroom is in a bedroom and typical bedroom closet system really don’t work for playroom storage. So we added some vertical storage to utilize the space!

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I loved organizing the sweet play space for a fabulous little girl and someday her baby brother and sister!

Little Girls Playroom

1 Jul

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I absolutely love this playroom! Organizing this room for two sweet little girls was such fun!

Top three reasons I love this playroom…

1. My client had the room painted a pretty purple! This gives the room a fresh starting point!

2. I love that they painted the closet and removed the closet doors!

3. They moved the kids kitchen into the closet, which with the closet doors removed adds play space for the girls!

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I love this room! What do you love about it?

LL

5 Minute Organization

16 Dec


I have decided to do some organizing around my house and share!  I love to do room by room organizing about every six months and since I have some time off around the holiday now is a great time to get it done!

I started in my kitchen! The main problem is that I do not have the gigantic pantry in my dreams! I have a small kitchen, which means I have to get creative with storage!

I was using the boxes that the snacks came in, but really I could do better than this! I took some of my own advice and pulled everything out and started over!
Tada! This is much better! Total project cost $3, Total project time 15 minutes! I decided to use three white bins from the dollar store. They fit perfectly in one of my kitchen pull out drawers. The snacks are easier to see and with a baby latch to keep the baby out… I am good to go! I put all the snacks I buy in bulk in the bins. There is still room in the back of the drawer for other snacks.