31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom: Day 6- Controlling Clutter

Are you seeing any progress on your journey of 31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom?  I sure am! These little steps are making a big difference.  Today, I thought I’d share some of the ways that I have found to be successful in controlling clutter for my family.  With 6 kids, there are some things that really help me out and I think they may benefit you and your family as well.

Keep a Family Calendar


We have a large dry erase calendar in our Kitchen that we can change out Monthly {I purchased this one on clearance from Pottery Barn a few years back}.  My older daughters help me keep it current and we all add our events to it. This helps me to feel a little more sane on the days when we are going in 8 different directions.  One of the ways I organize it is by having a different color marker for each family member. So when my oldest has an art class we write it with her blue color and when the youngest has a doctors appointment we write it in orange.  This method works very well for us.

I do also use Google Calendars and share with my husband but I find that the calendar on the wall is worth the extra time because I am a visual person and when I see it all laid out for me every day I feel way more on top of everything.

 Baskets Everywhere

Kids seem to breed clutter. I have some clutter controllers in my home that help with the everyday messes.  I have a large basket {with a lid on it} at the bottom of my stairs which is also in my family room {This particular basket came from HomeGoods, which is one of my favorite stores ever!}.  This basket is for collecting escaped toys and items that need to be put away upstairs.  We collect items in there and once a week we clean everything out and put it all away.

We also have baskets for shoes {This one’s from Target}.  When you have six kids there are potentially 12 socks and shoes kicked off every day. We are working on teaching them to take them off and put them away right away but I have always felt like this is an uphill battle. That’s why I have a basket by the front door and near the garage door to collect shoes & socks to be put away at a certain time of day. These baskets also work well for mittens and scarves on cold days.

A Place for Everything

We have several hook racks in our home {I made this one from a board and hooks that I purchased from Michael’s}. They are great for holding towels, purses by the door, bags of items to return to the store, backpacks, etc… It’s worth the effort to teach kids to use them to keep floors clutter free.


Crazy Paper Piles No More

Kids seem to get paper from everywhere they go. We get notes from school, homework papers, activity sheets from church, coloring pages and more! Too often these papers end up in piles and I cannot find what I need when I need it. Enter the hanging files {I found this one at Target in the office supplies}. The kind I have found has exactly 6 folders and this works out to be one for each kid for me. I have it hiding in my pantry in the kitchen and this is where papers go.  This eliminates so much frustration over where to find papers when you need them. We clean it out every couple weeks to make sure we are on top of everything.

What Can I Eat?

“What can I eat?” is a famous question in my house and is usually prefaced with “I’m SO hungry!” I was getting frustrated with hearing this from 6 different kids coming home from school at different times each day. So I got a big basket and put it in the pantry and it is the “Snack Box.”  My kids know what is in it is what they are allowed to have for snacks. I have also made sure they know to only eat one serving size of whatever the snack is that they choose.

That’s it for now. Hopefully these ideas will get your organizing juices going and you can tackle some of the ways clutter builds in your home.

Tell me your tips too! I’d love to know what you do to tackle and eliminate clutter.

31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom: Day 2 Where to Start?

Want to join me on my journey of 31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom?  Today I am chatting about where to start when you are feeling overwhelmed with disorganization. In case you missed yesterday’s meal planning post you can find it here.

The Mindset

Grace.  It’s a good thing.  Moms need to have LOTS of grace for themselves, for their children and for their husbands.  I like to be covered in the stuff {smile}.  But I think that there can be too much of a good thing and I’m pretty sure that’s why I’m in the disorganized mess that I find myself in today.

Hard Work.  It’s not fun but it’s necessary. I’m pretty sure that I thought that I was allergic to hard work for a while.  But, as I look around my home and my life that has been pretty “fly by the seat of my pants” lately I see that a lack of hard work has gotten me here.  As I wallow in my wondering about where to even start I know that I am dealing with the consequences of not being willing to do some hard work along the way.

Yes, I have 6 kids {and for some reason everyone seems to think that automatically makes me super organized} and they make crazy messes {anyone know how to get melted crayon out of every thing in the wash load?} but there are plenty of days that the hard work of staying on top of everything kept me from doing anything.

So what do I do about a messed up mindset?  Have you ever heard that the greatest is the servant of all?  I have to put on a mindset that I am here to serve my family.  They deserve it.  If I am willing to clean up and make amazing meals for guests shouldn’t I do that ALL THE MORE for my family?  I love these people {crazy messes and all}.  If I fail to serve them and let them know that they are the most important people in the world to me then I have failed as a mother.

Having this new mindset has given me the strong desire to do the hard work.  For me {and my peace} and for my family.

It Is Work

I am the one who let things get so out of order.  I am the one who was too tired to set a system in place.  So now I am paying the price and have so much more work to do to get back on top of everything.  And that is okay.  I acknowledge this and I stand up and get to work.  One thing at a time.

Where I start is with my mindset and my attitude.  If they aren’t in the right place then I will fail as soon as I begin.

How about you?  Do you struggle with where to start?  How can you look at things differently to be able to overcome your obstacles?


31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom

Welcome to 31 Days to Becoming an Organized Mom! I have decided to jump on the 31 days band wagon this month and join The Nester for 31 days of posts.  I’ve just been getting my feet wet lately with getting back to blogging but I am committing to dive in completely this month.

Why did I choose to do 31 days to Becoming an Organized Mom?  Because this has been pressing on my heart a lot lately.  I am not writing from the place of having everything organized but rather wanting to get there.  There have been lots of babies and toddlers in my house over the past 14 years and life seemed to speed past organized to barely holding on for a while.  But I know that being organized brings me so much peace and there is a balance between having grace for yourself and doing hard work.  I am desperately seeking the balance.

One day,  a couple weeks ago, I was driving in my car and thinking about the guests we would be having over in a few weeks.  I was thinking of all that I needed to get done before they came and how much work I would be doing.  It would probably mean some late nights and early mornings.  All of a sudden I felt very convicted.  “Why aren’t you willing to do all of that hard work for your family?  Do you realize that the message you are sending is that they are less important than any guest you might have?”  Ouch!!

This is the message I have been sending to my precious family for many years.  Yes, there is grace…they have TONS of grace for the sleepless nights and jam packed days, but this is not what I want to communicate to my family.  They are the most precious people in the world to me and they deserve being my priority and any ounce of hard work that it takes to provide a peaceful home for them.

So I am digging in and getting organized.  This month I will use these 31 days to prioritize and organize and share with you here my progress and processes.  I know that deep down inside there is a very organized woman who is very anxious to get out.  I know this because I had to lock her away years ago after my 4th child was born.

Would you like to join me?  I’ll be adding the posts each day to this page so you can read them all.

Day 1- Meal Planning with Pinterest

Day 2- Where to Start Getting Organized– Your Mindset

Day 3- Where to start Practically In Your Home

Day 4- Eliminating Distractions

Day 5- Dealing with Life’s Curveballs

Day 6- Controlling Clutter

Day 7- Don’t Forget to Rest

Day 8- The Voice you Listen to {a.k.a You are NOT Overwhelmed}

Day 9- Analyzing the Problem Spots and Finding Solutions

Day 10- Eat the Frog

Day 11- Planning Ahead

Day 12-Scary To Do Lists

Day 13-Resources to Get You Going

Day 14-Take Care of Yourself Too!

Day 15- What Are We Organizing? {This one could change everything!}

Day 16- Decluttering Tips

Day 17- Remembering Why We Do It

Day 18- Beauty Only

Day 19- Quick Tackle Something

Day 20- Shopping Smart

Day 21- Intentional Fun & Rest

Day 22- A Plan for Success

Day 23- Setting Goals to Stay Organized

Day 24- Helping Kids Help You

Day 25- Kids Checklist for Chores

Day 26- Scheduling Chores for Kids

Day 27- An Ideal Life

Day 28- Printable Chore Checklists for Kids

Day 29- Doing a bit of Dreaming

Day 30- Staying on Top of Laundry

Day 31- This. Just This!