five quick tips for home organization

While I am indeed back from time off and vacation with my boys, I have one more fabulous guest post to share with you! Which is perfect since today I'm putting on a last minute, but super fun pirate themed play date that I'll be sharing with you tomorrow!

If you missed the other guest posts, be sure to check out the links below. 


I'm going to start out by telling you that I am in no way qualified to write a post about organization. It's a struggle for me. I love it, but it's just not “how my brain works.” My brain works in piles. My piles have formed a well-functioning, miniature community on top of my dining room table. They just elected a mayor. 

All joking aside, I don't want to give you the impression that my house is immaculate, I simply want to share some ideas that you may find helpful. We live in a starter house, and I find myself constantly sorting through our belongings because we simply don't have room (this isn't necessarily a bad thing).

The following ideas are strategies I've learned after five years of marriage; things I wish I would have known sooner! Some of them may seem pretty basic, but if you're a new homeowner or experiencing a life transition, these tips may be helpful! 

1) Problem-solve. 
What's driving you crazy about your house right now? Is there a way to fix it? We have two dogs and hardwood floors, so sweeping up dog hair is a high priority. Our tiny, plastic dust pan was never in the same place as the broom, and that frustrated me to no end. I recently purchased a larger, free-standing dust pan with a hook that holds the broom, and it's kind of rocking my world.

2) Do some research. 
This is an extension of the statement above. Spend a little bit of time researching the fine art of organization! Is there a product you never knew existed? Can you use an item you already own- just in a different, perhaps more functional way? For example, I ordered a kitchen sink caddy that's made for holding sponges. I attached them to the inside of my cabinets using hooks, and that's where I store taco seasoning packets, crystal light packets, etc. I found that idea on the website via Pinterest! There are a lot of organizational geniuses out there! You never know what you'll find! Just start exploring!

3) Tie up loose ends.
Look for things that appear to be stored haphazardly. Wash cloths, hand towels, and a few laundry-related items always seem to be spilling onto the floor in my laundry room. Did you know that zip-loc makes jumbo sized baggies (2.5 gallons) as well as large totes with handles? I always go straight for the smaller baggies without ever bothering to look elsewhere. From my experience, they're usually close to the bottom shelf at the store. Using these has been really helpful when storing gift-wrapping supplies, bed sheets, as well as the items listed above.

4) Work with a timer. 
This strategy has changed my life. I try to work really hard for about 30 minutes. Then, take a 5 minute break. Every third break is about 30 minutes long. Ideally, I do this in the morning and eat lunch during the long break. By the end of the cycle, I've gotten in 75 productive minutes. I set the alarm on my phone or the timer on my oven and work away. If I'm feeling especially overwhelmed or pressed for time, I don't spend as much time working. For example, before I go to bed, I might set the timer for 15 minutes and work in the kitchen. Also, a “ten minute tidy” can be just as effective when you're feeling stressed by the mess and overwhelmed.

5) “Do one thing everyday that moves you in a forward direction.” 
As a shop owner, posting pictures of my items helps me feel as if I've made progress. As a wife, re-organizing our utility room moves me closer to a more organized life. Basically, try to accomplish something everyday that will free up some brain space and time in your schedule so you can venture onto other pursuits.

Best of luck, from one organizational junkie to another!

Holly blogs at The Young Museum and recently opened The Young Museum Shop
She writes about marriage, faith, her love for Ohio, and how to tame two wild dogs.