Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Chaos & Clutter Is My Middle Name

I had every intention of writing about all my pregnancy woes today.

Like my swollen cankles.

Or my aching back, or my pitiful hip.

Or the lack of sleep.

Lack of waistline.

Etc etc...

But then I thought...naw...maybe another day. Let's talk about something positive. Like the office (aka kids' crap room) that has made quite the transformation.

In our house, what we lack in bedroom and storage space, we make up for in living space. We have a large living room, a finished basement and what we call the "Office"...a sun room that used to be a porch. Thank God the previous owners decided to enclose it and make it part of the rest of the house.

This area has easily saved us from moving, killing each other or going stir crazy with 7 people in one home.

It's this room where we store all of the kids' toys and costumes (I hate toys in bedrooms and the main living room), stash their many, many books, keep their Play Station, let them watch TV, and plan to do most of our schooling if we do decide to go ahead with home/cyber schooling next year.

Here's how it used to look when I desperately called in a professional organizer:

I feel it's important to note that the room did not always look like this.

However...if I didn't kill myself and follow the kids around to clean up their mess or nag them  to do the same, it would inevitably end up looking like this.

And then I would cry.

And maybe yell and throw things and have been known to grab a trash bag and go a little nutso throwing things away.

So, I figured there had to be a better way to handle this. came the Pro to give me some feedback. She actually complimented me on quite a bit that I was doing right and the advice she gave surprised me...she told me to start with my bedroom closets.

Pardon me?

I didn't call you here to look at my closets.


So, I devised my own plan for making this room *work*.

Here is the "After"

We got rid of the desktop computer and the desk to make more room for this armoire. It holds the TV, the printer, the modem for the computer, all of our bills ready to be paid, and some other important papers. The drawers hold the kids' DVDs and Play Station games along with other office-y  things like envelopes, staples, stapler, printer paper, etc. 

That double recliner was bought on clearance at a store closing sale for less than $300. 

The table in the middle was a Craigslist buy. At $20 for the table and the 4 chairs I consider it a steal. 
The bookcase was bought at Target for $69. 

Here's how we personalized the table. The 4 oldest finger painted it. It's where they play games and will eventually do schooling. 

These three bookcases were bought at Target for $20 each. I went a little cheaper with these ones since we were buying 3 at a time. They are not the best quality, but they serve our purposes and are holding up nicely. 

The beige baskets in the middle are also a Target buy. $6.99 each.

The red basket at the top in the middle: Target, $9.99

The artwork up above was free. It's my kids' artwork and the phrase in the middle I printed on my computer. 

The white dresser you see a tiny bit of at the far end of the room was another Craigslist steal. You can see the transformation of it HERE. It was also $20 and I painted it to hold their toys and costumes. 

This room is still a work in progress, but man oh man am I SOOO much happier with it.

It has secretly been a blessing that our dog has a chewing fetish for the kids' toys. Should I feel bad that I privately cheer him on when he gets a hold of one of their 572 little guys?

We've purged, we've organized and we've made some smart purchases. We're growing into this room and making it make sense for us. 

Now if only the rest of the house would magically do that. 

And speaking of those closets...that's a nightmare post for another day. :)

Linking up today to MY FAVE DECOR BLOG EVER

TDC Before and After
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