Organization Around The House

I've always, to an extent, been a pretty organized person.  I like order {and lists......LOVE lists}.  I feel a lot less stressed when there's order to my home.  It's such a simple thing, but it really is true.

Here we go:

The Kitchen:

Any products that I take out of original packaging and re-pack into glass jars, I label with the name of the item.  If it's not something I use frequently, I also label with expiration date.

If there's cooking instructions that come with the product, such as pasta, I cut out the instructions and tape them to the inside of the lid.

We have a large stand-alone freezer that I found the only way to truly use the space efficiently, was to purchase rubber-lined baskets. {These are from}  Each basket is labeled.

I use a check list inside the house to track the freezer inventory on, for the purposes of grocery shopping as well as for menu planning.

Some things are better stored flat, so the bottom 2 shelves are without baskets.

Whenever I package or re-package any item for the freezer, if it didn't come from my own property or a local farm, I always make a note of the grocery store {the "H" on the photo below}, what the item is, and the date I packaged it.  This way, if there is a re-call I don't have to worry about which items to take back or toss.

A couple of years ago when they had burger on sale at our local grocery store, I decided to take advantage of the sale and stock up.  Since we had quite a few packs left from a local farmer as well as another grocery store in the area from their sale, we used those first.  About 2 months later, the burger from the grocery store I got the sale burger from was re-called.  The same month as the burger I had purchased was re-called.  I had to throw out all the grocery store burger, since I hadn't notated which was purchased where.  {the local farm burger has a much different consistency so I didn't have to throw that}  I realized then we needed a system to notate where the item was purchased and the date.

Whenever I open a product and don't use the entire contents, I always write the date it was opened with a sharpie on the product somewhere.  This way, I don't have to try and figure out when it was opened and if it's still good.

I realized there are truly no original ideas in the world when I came up with this.   I had the "brilliant" idea of not only re-using baby food and frappucino jars for spices {not the brilliant part}, but to paint the lids with chalkboard spray paint so I could easily date them {the brilliant part} and, therefore, know when the spices/herbs are past their prime.  Brilliant!  I thought to myself.  Then, while wandering around someone's pinterest board searching for something entirely different, there it was.  The exact same project, only she labeled them on the lids.  It was slightly disappointing.

Anyway, I chose to use a label maker label for the name of the spice/herb, and chalk for the date I put the spice in the jar so if the lid accidentally gets erased, at least I know what's in the jar.

This is a great way to store spices/herbs bought in bulk or those you dry or mix yourself.

Here's what I did:

I spray-painted the exterior only of the lids so the paint will not come into contact with the food.  Although shiny when wet, they dry to a nice dull black.

The Office:

I like to be able to find things quickly, so I chose to file our files in this manner.  Main tab {hanging file folder tab} is on the left, and secondary tab {manila folders} are on the right.  This way, I can find the main tab and then look within it to find the actual file I'm searching for.

Warranties/receipts are stored in the same manner.

The entry room:

Unfortunately, we do not have a mud room, therefore, the first room of our house we've used as a storage and entry area.

Jay built the benches.  The one straight ahead holds shoes, and the one to the right opens up to store bags of pellets in the winter and canning supplies in the summer.  They serve a secondary purpose of places to sit while putting on shoes, and places to relax and watch birds and the property if you're a dog or a cat.

The crock holds a bucket for recycling.  When the bucket is full, we take it out and throw it's contents in the recycling bin.

The coat shelf holds 3 baskets of stuff, all with initial tags so we know where our own basket is {"E" "O" is for Emerson and Oliver}.

The Craft Room:

Having a husband who's "handy" is very beneficial, I must say.  He built much of this room specifically to fit all the things I needed to store.  In the first craft room photo, we bought the desk/drawer pieces which we stacked and then he made the counter-top for the top.

In the second photo, he built the entire L-shaped counter/storage work counter.  I wanted it tall enough to stand at, with open cubbies to fit the 12x12" paper.  I found the brown cloth storage boxes at Target.  Jay built the smaller cubbies to fit the smaller storage boxes. {isn't he great???}

The photo below is the punch storage hanger.  Jay took a piece of white melamine board, laid out all the punches on it, cut it to length, then put a nail where each punch would hang {you can see between the 2 purple punches}.  Most of my punches had a little hole in the back that we could hang them with, but for the smaller ones that didn't have a hole, he carefully drilled one in the plastic.

**If you have small children I would not recommend this because although they store very well, if a child were to grab a large punch and drop it, they may get injured.**

We bought a piece of peg board at a home improvement store and spray painted it white.  I bought a few of the hooks that they had to fit the board to hang scissors, brushes, and misc. from.

Jay built my rubber stamp storage shelf specific to what I had.  I wanted enough spacing between the shelves to comfortably fit larger stamps, as well as to see what I had since I would be storing them 2-4 deep.  I stagger them so I can see exactly what I have.

The jars on the top of the shelf are from Target and hold loose ribbon.

The magnetic board under the shelving is galvanized sheet metal, also from the local home improvement store.  It was simply screwed to the wall.  I bought a sheet of magnetic backing and stuck that to the back of some of the metal containers I had so they would hang on the magnetic board.

Most of my small items {brads, clips, flowers, beads, etc.} are stored in shelving meant for storing nails, screws, etc. at the home improvement store.

You can find these at garage sales, thrift stores, etc. in a variety of colors.  I found a spray paint that could be used on plastic and was able to make them look uniform.  I then used my label maker {love that thing!} to label each of the drawers.

Some of my other embellishments are stored in embroidery boxes found at the arts and crafts store.

I love that I can sort by color, theme, or type of item.

Acrylic paints are lined up by color on the ribbon shelf, and ribbon still on the spool is easy to use.  Some of the spools had holes too small for the ribbon rod that came with the shelf, so Jay found a metal rod he had lying around, cut it to length, and all my ribbon now fits!

Behind my door is shelving that holds shoe boxes labeled with what's inside.  Tools are separated by type of project, yarn by color and fabric by color as well.

Open shelving hold baskets filled with things such as memorabilia that needs to be put into scrapbooks, vintage items such as postcards, labels, etc. that I love to craft with, larger stamp packs for fabric stamping, and misc. items such as the "chicken" basket {meds, vitamins, etc} and the "electrical" basket {power strips, extension cords, etc.}.

Additional things I store:

  • Clipped recipes are stored in binders with dividers for the type of food {i.e. Appetizer, Soup, Fruit Desserts, Main Dish - Poultry, etc.}
  • Craft ideas that I've clipped or printed out, are also stored in binders.  These are divided by Holiday or by type of project {i.e. all Christmas or Easter-themed crafts would be within the holiday, but something such as soap-making would have it's own category}.
  • Clothing is stored in our closet or dresser.  We don't put any clothing away anywhere else.  I learned long ago that I just don't need that many clothes.  Once an item is no longer something I can wear or is getting too tattered, if the fabric is something I would craft with, it goes into the fabric basket of that color, otherwise, it gets tossed or donated.
  • First Aid items are in a basket in the bathroom cabinet.  This makes it very easy when something is urgently needed, to find exactly what you're looking for.  It also makes it easy to take inventory when I'm making a shopping list, of anything that's close to being used up.
  • Grocery List - I keep an ongoing list for grocery shopping in the kitchen.  All items we regularly use are printed on the list.  I make a note that I need something when I've used the last of it, making it easier to not forget items when I'm getting ready to go shopping.
  • Holiday items - I store holiday decor in locking totes.  Each holiday has it's own color so I can locate the items for that specific holiday very quickly.
  • Husband's stuff - I don't touch it.  He has his own systems, and that's where I leave it.  It's worked for 15 years, so if it works, don't fix it.

When attempting to take photos of our entry room, I had 3 FANTASTIC supervisors who made it just a little more difficult to do:

My 3 French Bulldogs {don't tell Jackson he's a cat}


Snooks said...

Love your thought process. Currently going through everything in the house and parting with things. Can't wait to get organized. Your right -it feels good.
@ 3Beeze Homestead

daisy g said...

Love all your organized spaces! We use a lot of the same systems. Great minds and all that...

The wall color in your entry is nice!

mountain mama said...! amazing!

Meredith said...

Oh my, am I jeleous tonight! Fantastic!

Sarah said...

Wow that is super organised! I love that. and need to use a few of those ideas

Unknown said...

Wow, and I thought I was organized!!! Loved your tour!

"Alone again.... naturally!" said...

I like to think I am as organized as you are! I am thinking a label maker will be in my future though and maybe a couple more rooms to make it a lot easier, lol. Love your systems! Cathy

Staci at Life At Cobble Hill Farm said...

Well thank you all. Funny, I don't see myself as all that organized - I always think I could improve. :) Cathy - yes, you DEFINITELY need a label maker.....and a couple more rooms. :)