I hate cleaning, so I often pick up as quickly as I can. This often means that I shove toys in random baskets, throw mail where it doesn't belong, and put things in spots just to get the out of my hair. In the end, I end up with a house that looks picked up, but nooks and crannies of disorganized clutter.
I think I finally decided to call someone to help me out when we found out we were expecting baby #3. I was barely keeping my head above water with 2 kids, so how was I going to get laundry done and clean a house with 3?!?!?! Thus, I made my phone call with zero shame and fully ready for some changes in this house!
Ironically, it turned out that the person I was referred to was actually a woman who went to my church! I already knew her, and automatically felt very comfortable with Lynn coming into my home and giving me a hand.
Now, as a side note--I had a few people tell me that they would be more than willing to come over and organize my house for me for free. I knew that calling and paying Lynn to help me out was going to be MORE than worth it. She has been trained on how to TEACH people different organizing skills, AND she is trained on how to make things personalized for their lifestyle. She took the time to understand how I like things in my house, and how I will best function in KEEPING things organized. I truly feel that money spent on a professional organizer is definitely worth it over having your best friend come over who is neat and tidy.
Okay, so what did we do!?!? My toughest areas on my main level are my front closet, my laundry room/bathroom, and my pantry. She had GREAT ideas for my laundry room:
- I store my paper towel, toilet paper, etc above our cupboard in the laundry room. They are an eye sore, but it's an easy spot for them. She suggested putting up a tension rod with a cute curtain to essentially "elongate" my cupboards. This would hide the clutter, but still make it accessible.
- Put up another tension rod in order to hang clothes. I like to do my laundry after kids go to bed. If I can hang up all the clothes and put them in the laundry room they are all ready to go in bedrooms the next day.
- Just do better with my storage in the cupboards. Add shelves, more bins, label, and DISCIPLINE myself to put things in the right spot.
- Another idea I am toying with, that is related to laundry, but not the room itself....I really struggle with getting Evie's clothes put away because she is so busy when she is awake, and I can't go in her room when she sleeps. She suggested maybe for the time being to move her clothes out of her room and into some place I could access when she is sleeping. I haven't come up with spot yet, but I am definitely brainstorming.
For my front closet:
- Clear out the upper shelves and make it useful space, not wasted.
- Definitely consider doing some seasonal storage of the winter coats to free up the space
- Have Paul build shelves in the bottom for my shoes because my current solution (nothing) is not working and my shoes are overwhelming and getting lost.
- Put hooks on the inside of the closet to hang bags.
- Remove the accordion door and replace with a curtain to give more space and accessibility.
For my pantry:
- I have things in bins, but was running into trouble because I did not know what was in the bottom of them, and would buy more. For example--I had 3 bags of powdered sugar. So, we made areas in the closet. The main eye level area is for things that we are using, like the current open boxes of cereal or crackers. Shelves below are for sealed boxes and bags to move.
- I need three bins for my cans: Veggies, Fruits, Soups. This will allow me to be able to easily assess what I need to buy or not.
- Basic reorganization of pantry items. Least used items went on top and bottom shelves
Thankfully, Paul is major handy and can help me with anything I need to hang or build. He is more than willing to do whatever he can to help me feel more on top of my life! I honestly cannot wait for her to come back, but I'm glad we chose 2 hour increments. I think I would have felt overwhelmed if I did any more than that. This gives me enough time to complete my goals before her next visit.
Never once did Lynn say I was doing something wrong or made me feel like I was a mess. She was supportive, and really worked WITH me to find a system that would work for our lifestyle. I was a little embarassed to let her see the worst areas in my house, but she never acted shocked or disgusted (she may be a great actress) :-).
If any of you want her to help you out I am more than willing to pass you her number. I prefer not to post her cell number on the internet, but send me a message and I'll pass it along :-) This woman has three kids of her own and home schools. She has to know a thing or two, or 100 about organizing :-)
I'll let ya know how the changes are going and the next changes we make! Now, I need to go to be all organized and neat.