Saturday, January 3, 2015

21-day organizing challenge: Week one recap

Things have truly gotten busy at the Boone house in the past two weeks. In fact, I've barely had the time to DO the 21-day challenge, much less blog about it. I have done the challenge, though, and I've decided instead of making a DAILY post about the challenge, I'll do a weekly post. 

Originally, I had written days one and two as two separate posts, but for the sake of reading, I decided to make it easier. I also back-dated a few posts into weekly posts so I wouldn’t have to write one big, long, exhausting post. In the first week of the 21-day organizing challenge, we organized all of the following spaces in our house: kitchen cabinets, pantry and coat closet, entry way, desk and home office, bathroom cabinets, and linen closet. 

I started off the challenge with re-organizing my cabinets. My kitchen cabinets didn't LOOK that bad, but they weren't organized in a way that made sense. 
There were things in this cabinet we no longer used, and the things we DID use often were in the back. Made no sense. Now, everything is re-organized and for the better. Since I posted the day one post, we have re-done our drink glass cabinet and moved the medicines to a completely different cabinet altogether. Now, everything in this cabinet is drinkware related. 

On day two, our pantry got new labels and the bins were decluttered. Clutter from the floor was removed and sent to lesser-used cabinets, and baskets were re-organized and purged of unneeded or expired items, 

Why coat closet AND pantry? At my house, one corner of my pantry IS a coat closet :) If you cannot say the same, then you have a choice as to which one you want to organize. We re-organized I like the new "chalklboard" labels, don't you?

We also have this great basket with our entertainment goodies in case of company. Things like small platters, toothpicks, pretzels, and crackers. The basket was so full things were sticking out. Messy!

My solution was to purge some of the items from the basket and restructure it a bit. Those Frozen party plates from my daughter's birthday? Gone. Stale pretzels? Ditto. 

My husband's tools mostly reside in the garage, but we do keep a few screwdrivers, a hammer, a tape measure, a few allen wrenches, a level and a small size drill in the house. 
Those tools were a hot mess, so I repurposed a crock that used to hold my kitchen utensils. Now, they look a lot less messy and are still within reach. 

In the "coat closet" area of the pantry, I also took down all the baskets and checked up on their organization.  All items were in the right places but they weren't really and truly organized. 
I chose to use some "DIY drawer organizers" to give everything its own place. 
I also chose to move some of the unnecessary items from the floor of the pantry to the cabinets above the fridge.

I unboxed the pottery and put it in the cabinet above my fridge. 
Now the floor of the pantry looks like this: 
Our coat closet area looks like this: 

The pantry/entry way reorganizing project was a snowball effect. It let to my reorganizing our desk, entry way, and desk. All of those items were on the list to be organized anyway. 

On day three, our entry way was becoming a "drop zone" and starting to look like this:
Even the baskets were looking piled up: 
This one was just a matter of putting some things up in the correct place, throwing away some things, and only keeping what is truly needed here. 

Now, the entry way is looking a lot neater and less like a bomb went off. 

On day four, I tackled our desk. The desk top itself looks pretty good. However, the drawers look horrible. Here's what I was dealing with: 

Not terrible, but not great or functional, either. 

Not a good use of this deep file drawer. 

I found some inexpensive drawer dividers and I used them in our desk drawers. They gave me so much more room. 

Remember that deep file drawer? Here ya go. 
The bathroom cabinets were next on the list. We have had our bathroom cabinets organized using various baskets and bins for a long time. I chose to go through our cabinets and organize things by their purpose and frequency of use. We also got a shelf for E's bathroom to add more storage, but we aren't quite finished styling it yet. 

Here is E's bathroom cabinet before, with lots of stuff we don't use right in the front.
And here is the after: 

In our bathroom, we needed to reorganize some of the poorly organized drawers. here's a sloppy before for you:

And here is the much better after:

We have the luxury of having a nice linen closet in our bathroom. My dad and I added shelves to it when my husband and I moved in. We also have a tower shelf in which we use bins. This closet just needed a little straightening.

Day seven should have been the day in which I organized the bedroom closets, but it wasn’t. We are in the process of building and installing closet organizer shelves in the closets in Emorie’s new room and the nursery.  We are using an Ana White plan to construct the shelves. My dad is helping us with this project, but his health is more important and that is our concern at the moment. My closet was reorganized in the summer, but my husband’s closet is a hot mess. It isn’t his fault; for some reason, the person who installed my built-in closet organizer did not see fit to install the same organizer in his closet. This summer, we will be removing the shelf above his closet rod, raising his closet rod, and adding a second rod. 

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