Homekeeping Solutions

Organizing the Office Closet. Resolution DONE.

I talked here about getting my office closet a little more organized -- spurred on by the amazing office of Amy Meier.  I think I spent about 3 hours on this today and this is as good as it will get (I reach my limit on some projects).  

I took just about everything out and put it in its own category (e.g. office supplies, software, photos, binders, etc).  I finally had the sense to put the most often used items up front and center. I don't know why it took me 2 years to reach that conclusion.

Most of the boxes I have had for a while, but I supplemented them with white Kasset boxes from Ikea as well as some brown paper boxes (on sale) at Kate's Paperie.

While shopping at Kate's, I picked up this (one sale) wrapping paper that perfectly tied all the random boxes together.

Kate's Paperie Gift Wrap Roll, Gold,Silver Stripes on Kraft

I used the wrapping paper to cover some of my binders to try and create a unified look. I think this would probably be easier if you had some 12x12 scrap book paper, but whatev. It's done!  And yes, that strip of pink on the one binder is annoying.  Oh well.

I had lofty thoughts of putting plywood board down on the shelves (I HATE white wire shelves) and covering it in linen or burlap, but that seems too labor intesive for me at the moment.


It's not worthy of Amy Meier or Martha or Better Homes and Gardens, but I think it might give me 60 seconds of satisfaction every time I open the door.

Linking up to:

Keeping It Simple Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Design and Resolutions.

Every email, magazine, and TV show you see in January is likely dedicated to organization and clutter - -  just as it is every January.   In addition, every year,  I resolve to clear the clutter and get better organized.  One project this year is the home office.  It is actually not TOO bad, but our closet could stand a little sprucing up.         


I ran across this article in the January issue of BHG.  It is designer Amy Meier’s home office (actually located in her dining room).   


I love this space!  I think this is the perfect blend of white, natural materials, metals, and pure beautiful organization.     

Why can’t I seem to get this perfect blend?   

Further in the article, it actually lists Amy’s formula for the right mix of finishes "50 percent slick white, 25 percent woven baskets, and 25 percent brushed metal.”  You know I am not very adept at math, but I am going to attempt this!   



Read more about Amy’s Office here.  And, be sure to look around her blog -- she has some great stuff.   


HOWEVER, before I run out and buy 1,000 new items, I really need to sit down and plan what I need and what will work.  I am too apt to run out and buy a bunch of stuff that doesn’t work, is too small, and is not visually appealing.  

So, what’s your first home project for 2011? 

PS:  Here is the Diva’s 2011 Resolution.  We are on Day #2 and she is having a pretty difficult time sustaining it.   


How to create a kid-friendly Family Room

I know how tough it can be to try to co-exist with toys.  I've been through those days of the giant play kitchen sitting in my living room.  Actually, I bought the kitchen that I thought best complemented my color scheme.  Not kidding.  Then, we moved on to a casket-sized toy box that the husband built.  It was great to hold all the toys, but since it still sat IN the family room, the toys would spill over.  And over, and over. The key to co-exist is to create cleverly hidden pockets of storage for all of those must-have-close by toys.  Brought to you by BHG here.    I would recommend going with storage containers that have a more timeless appeal and will take you past the age of toys.   Think baskets or some vintage crates.

storage detail

Also,  fabrics and surfaces that can withstand your Sharpie-yielding Tasmanian devil.

A family relaxes in this beach house living room with striped arm chairs, and a durable cotton rug

Here are some other great reads and resources to get the style you WANT while being family friendly!

  1. Options for Kid Friendly Fabrics
  2. Houzz
  3. Kaboose
  4. Momtastic
  5. Little Green Notebook -- here and here 

Do you have any tips to share?  Unload, sisters!

My First IKEA Hack.

I have officially joined the ranks of IKEA hackers.  

I started with the SNUDDA lazy Susan for $8.   Why is it called the SNUDDA and not the "Lata Signe?"


Anyway,   I tossed on a primer when I was doing the guest room dresser.  Which, yes, I know...I need to post the finished product.  

Then, I spray painted a little ivory paint, traced a 4 (my favorite number as well as the number of members in the SNM household), and painted it with some acrylic paint.

After that, I aged it with some glaze and then sanded with the power sander. (I am addicted to this tool.  I wish it had to power to erase freckles and age spots, but it just gave me a really bad road rash).



Here is sits.  Ready to have a Star Wars action figure go spinning and pull about 3Gs.  (I know this since I tested it on my sister's Dolly Parton Barbie back in the day). 

I'd love to say that this baby is going to make access to the salt and pepper easier.  But, I know it will just end up being the source for some childhood naughtiness and thus a lot of yelling.

PS:  Yes, I know the last picture is out of focus.  Sorry.  It's late and SNM is beat.


Linking up to: Met Monday at Between Naps on the Porch

A Real Life Cleaning Schedule

Ok:  I really do like cleaning.  I do.  It's cathartic.  However, I don't have the TIME to clean (I know what you're thinking..."BUT you do have time to blog?")  Well, that's also cathartic.     


Here is the issue.  One big house, 2 young kids, 1 busy husband, 1 ADD mother, and one dog who was genetically bred to lose 75% of his hair per day (Lab) = the mother lode of cleaning.

I have tried all kids of cleaning products -- Swiffer, Lysol, Scrubbing Bubbles, Mrs Meyer, the Method, Hoover Floormate, etc.  I have tried different cleaning systems: Go room by room/top to bottom or Windex the entire house, then dust the entire house, etc.     

Truly, the best solution to date is just to hire a cleaning ladyYep, works every time.  I had one after I had the Diva and it was glorious -- despite the childcare advice she gave me -- that was annoying.  We had to give it up when I was pregnant with Grand Slam (great timing, eh?) in order to hand over the pound of flesh to the daycare.   Flash forward to the new, bigger house and we started up again with a cleaning service -- only to be affected by the Great Recession of 2009 plus skyrocketing property taxes.     

Coming home to a fully cleaned house is a feeling I can't describe.  After the shock wears off, I find myself sprawled out on the dog-hair-free carpet doing a snow angel-like movement.  I think it is a feeling that no amount of Xanax, Prozac, or Celexa could achieve -- at least that is what I am assuming.  And for a mere 10 minutes, before it gets destroyed again, there is an inner peace that is unlike anything....     

Seeing dirty toilets, overflowing trash cans, and sippy cups in a multitude of places always creates a feeling that also can't  be described -- one I am sure could be tempered by Prozac.     

And that is where this list comes in.  I found this on Home Sanctuary and might give it a whirl.  The cool thing is that there is one method for Working Moms and one for Stay-at-Home moms.  If you work part-time, well...take a mix of both.      

Do you have a method that works for you?  Do you love to clean?  It you like to clean and you are willing to do it for free (you know, for the therapy it provides). then come on over!