Here are some of our favorite tools to help you get organized! IKEA has several things we really like.
Rolling cart — RASKOG. This is perfect for holding art supplies, toys, homework essentials, etc. Have one for each child for his/her things. Mobile, easy to put together and very attractive!
Cubby Shelving — KALLAX. These are fantastic shelves. We use these all the time. They work in so many different rooms and situations – mud rooms, play rooms, bedrooms. They store books, toys when outfitted with baskets or doors, shoes, backpacks, etc. They are also just over 30 inches high, which is the standard height as a sofa table or console table, so they fit behind most sofas if your piece is floating in the room.
Catch All Storage — PS FANGST. These are fun for kids bedrooms and playrooms. Holds lots of soft things – stuffed animals, socks and underwear. Gloves, mittens and hats in the mudroom or entrance closet. This is great because its easy for little kids to see what goes where and then put it away themselves!
shoe bags — SKUBB. These work for so much more than just shoes. Think :: Polly Pockets, individual Lego sets, card games, marbles, match box cars, etc. You can also get these with clear pockets through many websites, which may make it easier for little ones to spot their treasures.
In terms of decluttering a room so that you can begin to use one of these products, we like to do the following ::
turn on some good music
make a favorite drink or coffee/tea
set a timer (even 30-45 minutes will work at first!)
use small containers
put like-minded things together
be ruthless about your things, but be kind to yourself!
Have cardboard box ready for donation, broken/missing items, stuff to rotate out to secret place (we especially like to use this for kids’ toys and books!)
Use small containers so kids can carry them from room to room. If there is a place where things go, kids can learn to put things back. Really!
We recommend Infinity Photo Solutions for help in organizing your family photos. She can help you with your digital photo storage and your printed photos too!
For kids clothing that you think still has some life to it (but that your kids have outgrown), try Thred Up. It is an online consignment store. They send you a container, you load your items and ship them, and then they take it from there. If your items sell, you get $ or credit on their site.
Check local websites for the days and locations where they bulk shred or take all those electronics for recycling.