It simply makes me crazy to have a cluttered home, yet being a collector of "stuff" makes it hard to find the balance between keeping often-used items handy, and keeping the house tidy. And let's face it: having a kid, and pets in the house, make it challenging, so I've turned to using baskets in my home for anything and everything. Here are a few of my favorite ways to keep home organization functional, and yes, even fun for the kids:
1. The Kids' Catch-All:
One of my all-time favorites, this basket was crafted in the Caribbean, and picked up cheap on a summer vacation. This adorable covered basket has survived being stuffed in a suitcase, not to mention nine years of building blocks, toy phones, finger puppets, pop bead necklaces and one stuffed polar bear. Little enough for a toddler to haul around the house, and fun enough for them to play the "clean up game" after they're done playing!!
2. The pantry catch-all tiered bins:
The potato and onion storage is a natural for us,but using the top bin to store kid-friendly snacks keeps the cereal bars and healthier options within sight of hungry kids at home in the summer. In the Fall, I load the bins with juice boxes, bagged chips and other items for easy lunch box stuffing!!
In a kid's room, who can resist a three-point shot? Prior to picking up this open-top hamper, the only place my daughter would keep dirty clothing was the floor. Now, when she has unexpected guests, she tosses a fluffy throw from her bed on top of dirty clothes to minimize the 'oh gross' reaction from her friends. If she wants clean clothes, she brings the bin to the laundry room, it's that simple.
4. Movie Night:
When this special basket makes an appearance, it's all about fun!! Keep a basket stocked with movie-box candy, Cracker Jacks, microwave popcorn and your other family favorites. When the kids have a sleepover or special playdate, we order pizza, grab our favorite movie, pillows and blankets, and set ourselves up for a super night on a budget. Can't beat it!!
5. Pet Toy Stash: An open basket is a great catch-all for pet toys. The dog knocks it over looking for her favorites, but that is easily solved when we slide the basket under the table before guests arrive. Even the cats rummage for their favorite toys!! A great way to give even the furry family members a place for their stuff!
6. The Family Room Fluff:
You'd never guess that when our family sofa-surfs, we've got three fleece throws, one princess blanket, an old cotton quilt and a plaid dog blanket on hand. And yep, with all those spots, stripes and plaids going on, it is indeed a decorator's nightmare! This enormous basket is our catch-all for all things fluffy, and when company arrives, it gets covered with this beautiful country quilt. Shhhh....it's our secret!
7. Gathered Treasures:
What a beautiful way to remember this Summer's beach days, than by gathering the shells together in a lovely nautical basket. Swap out the shells in the Fall for gathered acorns, in the Winter for pinecones, and in the Spring for creekside pebbles, and you'll bring a little bit of nature indoors with each seasonal walk with the kids.
8. Toy Tea Set:
Who can resist a kids' tea set in a little picnic basket? Besides being utterly adorable, it protects the china, and teaches the little ones to care for and put away their things. 'Nuff said?
9. Woven Toy Chest:
A great find that not only keeps your kids' space tidy, but with the lighter lid, it protects against the pinched fingers and head-bonks so common with wooden toy chests. The design blends in well with "grown up" decor too!!
10. The Beanie Basket:
Quiz: How many Beanie Babies can fit into a basket? Answer: LOTS! Believe it or not, there are almost thirty beanie toys in this photo!
Please share your favorite ways to organize your home, and "Be a Basket Case". Love to hear from you!!