How I organized messy areas in my house

It wasn’t even planned, guys. In fact, my plans were to put baby to bed, grab a bag of cheese cubes, and watch The Office reruns for the billionth time. But there I was staring at the inside our fridge on a Friday night and something in me snapped. I HAVE TO ORGANIZE IT ALL! So I asked Alexa to play some Phil Collins, took everything out of the fridge, and went on to organize every nook in our house that weekend. I actually needed a dumpster to be able to transport everything I was getting rid of, but I did choose the smallest of all the dumpster sizes so don’t judge me too much! Keep reading for some of my favorite results.

I started with the areas we use the most

Fridge, pantry, baby’s toys, hallway closet, linen closet. Then moved on to pajama drawers, accessories, and then the guest bedroom.

I swapped old plastic food containers with rectangle glass containers

No more mismatching mess. Plus, I don’t need 30+ containers when we only use about 10. I gave all the old plastic ones away and upgraded to a 24 piece set of glass rectangle food storage containers. The fit nicely in my pantry and fridge and are microwave safe.

I put jewelry in sock drawer organizers

I like my jewelry to be out of sight. Seeing my necklaces hung up on a wall or behind a door stresses me out and although the jewelry cabinets are beautiful, I really don’t want another piece of furniture in my house. So I asked folks on Instagram for some solutions and the best idea by far was to use sock / underwear drawer organizers. I already had one from Ikea so I used one for necklaces and bought an office desk drawer organizer for the rest. You can also use utensil drawer organizer.

I stopped folding hand towels and wash cloths

Our linen closet gets messy very quickly and it turns out that all of the different sizes of towels were causing the mess. Instead of trying to force all of the wash cloths and small hand towels to stay put, I tossed them all in a cube storage bin. It’s worked wonders for us and gave us extra room for big bath towels.

I used a utensil organizer for the dreaded kitchen junk drawer

This is the drawer that has a mixed bag of things – batteries, pens, wall hooks, etc. The utensil organizer forces us to keep the drawer under control. If it doesn’t fit in the utensil holder, then it’s gotta go.

I grouped toys together

Any parent knows that toys can slowly creep up and take over your house. Especially those small annoying pieces that haunt you in your dreams. We love decorative storage bins, but even better are the storage bins with lids. They blend in perfectly with our existing furniture and you’d never guess there are toys in there. More importantly though, I group like-items together. Books, small pieces, stuffed animals, balls, magnets, etc. For a while, we were tossing everything into her ball pit and it was just a complete mess.

We set household rules

My husband and I always bicker about clutter but it dawned on me that we never really set clear expectations for certain things around the house. This sounds so simple but it makes so much sense. Our fridge always gets so messy by the end of the week. New household rule: you take something out of the fridge, you put it back exactly where it came from. This has helped us know what we have in the fridge and now food isn’t going to waste. It has made meal planning a breeze because we don’t have to clean out the fridge every week!

I used a storage bin instead of a dresser for purses

Our guest bedroom has quickly become a storage unit. It’s where we record the podcast, where I package items for shipment and store junk that doesn’t have a home. I’ve been storing my purses and clutches in this cabinet and I avoided this mess for so long because I thought I needed a dresser to replace this useless cabinet. Then I came across this deep storage bin at Burlington and it works perfectly. Purchasing a dresser is a much bigger commitment than a storage bin and I can always use this for something else If I decided to switch things up again in a year.

Next steps:

Now that the living spaces feel more organized we’re going to tackle the big projects: garage and basement. The mess in the garage has been haunting me for months. Even knowing that there are tasks like updating the garage flooring is one that I have been putting off for a while. But now may be the time to sort out the garage once and for all.

It took this long, as in order for us to reorganize that space, we need a shed for large items like the lawnmower and bikes. I’ve had my eye on this garage floor mat to protect the garage floor from stains and dirt.

We have big plans down in the basement (where all baby toys go to retire) to make it more of functional rehearsal space for my husband and play space for baby. We want to take advantage of all of the built-in shelving, clear out old furniture and toys, get some carpet, and look into a tankless water heater. Turns out, buying a shed and a tankless water heater requires more research than I anticipated, especially when the heater becomes a little faulty. Thankfully, sites like exist that can help people like us find the best kind of heater for our situation. It’s super helpful being able to read other people’s reviews and research on the subject! With that being said, with there being companies like Sarkinen Plumbing, at least there are options when the water heater doesn’t work as well as it used to. If all else fails, luckily I found a great resource and we’re considering one of the high-rated options here. Lots of research ahead but the good news is, we’ll be saving on our energy bills in the long run. Never a dull moment with homeownership, that’s for sure!