One thing that I've always struggled to balance on this blog is wanting to share helpful, inspiring ideas and organized spaces while at the same time being honest about the fact that our home (and our life) is certainly not all pretty pictures and perfect organization all the time. I tend to show more of the pretty stuff because, well, it's nicer to look at and it's always really fun to see the "afters" of a space.
Today, though, I thought I'd share more of the "before" shots as I talk about the four biggest organization projects that we are planning to tackle in our home this year. These spaces range from "not so terrible" to "this is so horrendous that I can't even believe I'm showing a picture of it on the internet" ( 😉 ), but hopefully by the end of 2018, all four of these areas will be super organized and functioning well for our family!
My hope in sharing this post is to hold myself accountable for what I want to accomplish this year (and also be completely honest in that, while I love organizing, I am still kind of a disaster sometimes, lol)!
The 4 Big Organizing Projects I Want to Tackle in 2018
Let's start with the "not so terrible" so we can ease into the "absolutely horrendous" a little bit at a time, shall we? 🙂
1. The Other Half of My Office
I recently shared the new storage area in my home office, and I am THRILLED with how it turned out! This half of my office may be looking pretty good...
...but the other half still needs some work!
Some of the things I need to find storage solutions for in this space are:
- My pillow collection (I may be a smidge obsessed with throw pillows...oops!)
- The printer (This is currently the thing that is stumping me the most! If you have any great tips for hiding a large printer, please please please share them with me in the comments!)
- Scrapbook paper and printer paper
- 3 ring binders
- Books and magazines
- Baskets and larger decor items
- Fabric and craft supplies
- Workout gear (Yes, I use this room to work out too! 🙂 )
I would also like to be able to add a second work surface to the space to supplement my desk that's in the nook area. I'm thinking maybe some sort of table on casters so I can move it wherever I need it in the room...? Maybe?
I have some ideas for what I want to do to organize this space-- now it's all a matter of nailing down some final details and executing the plan!
2. The Mudroom
I love that we have a mudroom area in our house, but I know we're not really maximizing the potential of the space. When we moved in we put the bench and shelf with hooks from our previous home's entryway in here, which has helped, but I know we could have a better organizational system happening.
I would love to be able to add more usable storage to this nook area, perhaps with a built-in bench that has storage underneath and some sort of shelf or cube unit for the wall that has more storage than our current shelf too.
I know we could do a better job with organizing our coat closet as well. We have too many things shoved in there right now and no real system of organization at all...
It's not awful, but I am sort of obsessive about closets, and I can't wait to make this one more functional and beautiful!
3. The Garage
Okay, now this is where the really scary stuff starts-- don't say I didn't warn ya! 😉
We have a two car garage in our house, and guess how many cars are parked in it right now? 0!!!
Part of the problem is that we have a basketball hoop (that our boys rarely use!) taking up a big part of the garage. This photo was also taken shortly after Christmas, so we have a bunch of cardboard boxes that we haven't gotten rid of yet as well.
We left the shelving units from our last garage in our old house, so we don't have any type of storage pieces in this space. Because of that, many of our garage items like outdoor toys and tools are still in the moving boxes... from 15 months ago! (And many of the toys the boys have used are just thrown in random places on the garage floor.) GAH! Confession: I almost always try to enter our house through the front door these days because I kind of short out when I see this space!
Along with space to actually park our cars and store our outdoor items, I would love our garage to include a "drop zone" for sports equipment. My older son Connor plays hockey, and his gear takes up a ton of space. There's not a great place for it in the house currently, so we've been keeping it in the guest room. It would be awesome if there was built in storage for it in the garage so he could just put it there as he was coming back into the house. (And so the smelly-ness would stay out of the main part of the house... just sayin'. 😉 )
4. The Basement
Y'all, I can't believe I'm even showing you pictures of this space. You may stop taking any organizing advice from me at all once you see the worst of it. We have so much going on down here. It is a big (unfinished) basement, but I have been shocked at how fast it has gotten filled up!
Because of my son's aforementioned hockey obsession, one big section of the space has been turned into an area where he shoots pucks and practices stick handling. He really does use this space nearly every day, so for this season of our life at least, I'm fine with him having that piece of the basement as his domain.
Donnie has taken over another section of the basement as his workshop. He has a bunch of tools that he needs space for, and Pennsylvania gets COLD in the winter, so our garage isn't really a practical place to store his tool stuff if I actually want him to use it (which I definitely DO-- so many projects)! So again, I'm fine with his stuff down here, at least for this season of our lives, but we definitely need to get some organization systems in place in his work area!
What definitely needs the most help is this final part of our basement that we plan to use as storage space...
One of the things that has surprised me most about moving into a new house is that we have all sorts of things from our old house that simply don't fit anywhere because the spaces are configured differently. I've been holding on to all of the extra pieces (aka throwing them in this crazy messy basement) "in case I need them" as we get the house set up, but what I really need to do is take the time to go through everything in this spot and purge like crazy! I know we don't need most of this stuff, and it is just causing major clutter!
We also will bring in storage pieces for all of the items that we do plan to keep and organize this space so we can easily access everything.
We may eventually finish the basement (or at least part of it?), but that would be more of a long term plan far down the road-- definitely not anytime soon. We have lots of "hang out" space upstairs, so we don't feel like we need to finish it for that right now, and the functions that it's currently serving are working well for our family. We just need to declutter and organize!
So those are my big organizing priorities for 2018! I will definitely be doing smaller organizing projects around the house as well, but these are the "heavy hitters"-- I can't wait to tackle them!
Update! 2018 has come to a close, and we finished 3 out of the 4 projects on this list! You can see the completed projects in the posts below:
Stay tuned for basement organization progress coming in 2019!
What organizing projects do you have planned for 2018? Tell me about them in the comments, and we can all help to hold each other accountable!!
Hope you're having a wonderful week!