Daddy’s Little Helper

Posted on February 17, 2011. Filed under: home improvement, organization |

Last weekend J took away E’s favorite toy.  As I mentioned in a recent blog, E’s favorite toy was the speaker wires that ran from our TV under the rug to the back of the living room.  If we left E unattended in the living room he would scoot over to the wire and start chewing on it.  So last weekend J rewired everything so that the wires run under our living room floor.  E was obviously unaware of what the final outcome of the project was because he seemed determined to help J with the project. We will have to get our little helper his own tools soon!

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Organization Project #2

Posted on January 17, 2011. Filed under: decor, organization |

Two weeks ago, we did our first big home maximization project when we fixed our master bedroom closet.  The outcome of that project got us feeling so good about our little house, that we decided to tackle another project this weekend.  The laundry room off of our kitchen, which I lovingly refer to has my “Home Economy” room was no longer working for us.  It had become a dumping ground for papers that never got filed (because there was no place to file them), unfinished projects and anything else that didn’t have a “home” elsewhere.  Basically this room had become our junk drawer.  I’m very embarrassed at what this room had become, but sometimes you have to hit rock bottom before you can recover.


First thing Saturday morning we packed up and headed to Ikea to find something to replace those terrible drawers.  They came with the house and I’ve hated them since we moved in.  They are big and deep, so once you put something in them, there is a slim chance that you will ever find it again.  Also, it is hard to tell from this angle but the drawers took up a huge amount of space in the room.

Here is the star of the show (E) enjoying watching mommy and daddy eat breakfast at the Ikea cafe.  You have to have proper nutrition before venturing into the marketplace and making organizational decisions.  Those Swedes, they sure are smart!


Here is E in the back seat of the car on the way home from Ikea, this picture doesn’t do it justice but our little car was so full of flat pack boxes that we had to move E’s stroller into the back seat, that is large orange object to the left of E’s head.  I would have thought with all of the planning that goes into designed those flat packages that all of the Ikea furniture come it, that they would have made sure that they fit inside of my Swedish car without too much effort…Ugh.IMG_5290

J, put together all of the hard stuff (a file cabinet and 2 shelving units), but E and I put together the 4 storage boxes to go in the shelving units.  I was able to assemble the boxes while getting “assistance” from E which means that they are pretty easy to assemble.  Good thing, because E destroyed the directions with drool before I could read them.  These storage boxes seem pretty tough, they were able to stand-up to E’s drool without becoming soggy.

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J’s portions were a lot more complicated.  My job while he completed the assembly was to keep E out of the construction area, now that E is scooting around this is a much tougher job than you would think.  1filing cabinet, 2 shelving units, 1 initial trip and 2 return trips to Ikea and J said “he was all Ikea-ed out”.  While assembling the first item he was so impressed by the ingenuity, but by the end he was tired of putting stuff together.

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When doing organizational projects, things always get worse before they get better, but you must persevere.  At this point we took a break and watch an episode of Hoarders.  That was enough motivation continue working on our little project and throw away/donate non essential items.

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Here is how it looks tonight.  They old set of drawers came all they way out to the windowsill so from the side angle photo you can see how we gained a whole bunch of space.  Much better, it is like a breath of fresh air.  There are places to file papers and to store items.  Two organizational projects done, many more to go.

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New Year….New Closet

Posted on January 6, 2011. Filed under: decor, organization |

For the last 4 months this is what the end of our bed has looked like.  It drives both of us crazy, but our mini-closet was filled to capacity, so we have ignored the issue like an elephant in the room.  It all goes back to last spring when we converted our second bedroom into a nursery.  Prior to it being Ethan’s room I used the closet in the second bedroom to store my clothes and J used the bedroom closet for his.  It wasn’t too much of an issue initially because I just packed away all of my clothes in vacuum seal bags to be stored in the basement.  We were easily able to fit my limited maternity wardrobe in the closet along with J’s clothes.  So when I went back to work this fall we had to bring out all of my clothes from the vacuum seal bags and ever since then I’ve had a problem finding adequate storage in our itty bitty room and closet.

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The beginning of a new year has motivated both J and me to do some mini-projects around the house to make it more enjoyable and functional.  So on Saturday night J installed a new fancy-schmancy closet organizer from Home Depot.  (Merry Christmas and thank you very much for a Home Depot Gift Cards!!) It is almost exactly the same as the one we installed in E’s room, but the shelving system is a little bit narrower which gives us a few more inches of hanging space.  As you can see, E was eager to help his daddy install the new shelving unit.   

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As is often the case when doing organizational projects…..things first got much, much worse before they got better.


While most of the major drilling and hammering was going on during the installation process, E was sleeping on the other side of this wall.  He didn’t seem to mind one bit.  So far I’ve succeeded at one of my parenting goals….raising a baby that isn’t sensitive to noise.  Here is how the storage unit looked once it was stalled.  It might be hard to tell in these photos, but the shelves to right are wide enough for folder sweaters and shirts.

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From an outsiders perspective they might not look that different, but the changes are major to us, we now have more hanging space and more space for folded items.  Also, now that we are better able to see what is in our closet we were able to thin the herd a little bit, and get rid of some stuff.  It is a huge relief to finally have enough space to put everything away.  Now when I get home actually hang my closes up instead adding them to pile at the end of the bed!


Before & After

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