This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Fellowes Brands. All opinions are 100% mine.
Want to feel more productive as a mom and get an organized house simply? I took stock of my home at the start of this year, and found a few areas that needed to be more organized. I want to feel more productive each day so I can focus on my family more and cleaning up clutter less. We don’t need fancy storage that is out of our budget, just simple storage to have “a place for everything”.
Household organization is not always easy, but I believe it can be done simply. The stuff of life can pile up-important papers, permission slips, toy manuals, your relatives travel plans during the holidays. It all can feel messy and jumbled. Details can slip through the cracks when we are focusing on the daily tasks of caring for a household and children.
Cleaning up toys and shuffling through papers takes so much time. Let’s maximize our time and be more productive each day by setting up an organized house with kids.
5 Steps to an Organized House with Kids
There is a theme here: binders. Four of my tips involve binders. Apparently I really enjoy them!
1) Toy Brick Building Manuals
My children love building with toy bricks. Each set comes with its own manual. For the longest time I had no idea how to store them to keep them protected and easy to find when the kids were trying to build a specific castle or vehicle. Until I thought of this method, all the manuals were jumbled together in the drawer under my son’s bed!
Use a binder and plastic sleeves to store all those brick building set manuals. I put each manual in its own sleeve. This tip was such a help in our house. Although we needed a big binder to organize all of our manuals, this could be divided into separate binders by type of building set-vehicle, building, etc.
2) Household Binder
I have one binder with the most important papers for our day-to-day life. There are section dividers to separate each category of activity. The categories in my household binder are:
The benefit is I have a go-to place for all of my important papers whether it is a school information sheet or the list of when our monthly bills are due. I reduced my clutter pile and the things I had hanging on the fridge using this method. My flat surfaces stay clear and my fridge looks less cluttered.
After the school year ends, I sort through each section of my binder to remove the papers I no longer need. Shredding them in my Fellowes 79Ci shredder reduces the waste and eliminates any sensitive info (like names, emails and addresses of friends) from getting into the wrong hands. Any information with personal data I shred-it is very quick for me because my shredder is so quick and quiet (with SilentShred™ technology) that even if the kids are asleep I can organize my household binder to stay on top of the clutter.
The 100% Jam Proof system and heavy-duty cross-cut blades allow me to shred up to 16 pieces of paper per pass. I can even shred for 20 minutes to increase how much clutter I can get rid of at one time. Often the kids help me since my Fellowes 79Ci has SafeSense® technology and an energy saving system to maximize efficiency. You can find it on Amazon and Office Superstores with a suggested retail price of $239.99.
3) Recipe Binder
Even with all the online methods for saving great recipes, I like seeing it in paper form. I type out and print off my favorite recipes then place them in a binder. It has been a really handy way to keep favorite meals stored in the kitchen where I need them within easy reach. Many recipe sites offer a full page printout, so I just print, 3-hole punch and place it in my binder. This means meal planning is quicker leaving me feeling more productive.
I separate my recipes by category, and even have a section for the play dough and kid activity recipes. My recipes have lasted a long time stored in this way. Every few years I look through each section and remove any recipes I no longer make. Run them through the shredder and I can create a sensory activity for the kids with the paper shreds.
4) Holiday Planning Binder
Similar to the household binder, planning for the holidays can involve a lot of paper work schedules and lists. I store all of mine in my holiday planning binder. It is very simple to put together and helps me stay organized with the added planning of the holiday season.
Now for the tip that does not involve a binder!
5) Toy Storage
We move a lot thanks to military life, so I have learned the easiest way for us to organize our toys to maintain an organized house with kids. It is a simple system of bins and labels to keep toys separated by type making them easier to find-and easier to put away.
With four kids we have a fair amount of toys, but we have a set amount of storage. This bin system helps the kids learn organizational skills when they clean up.
Plastic storage bins that fit into a divided storage shelf are what I found to be the best. We used to use the fabric storage bins, but with a lot of toys and a lot of use, the bins begin to wear out and crush easily. Plus, with the plastic storage bins, you can easily stick on a label. This makes it easy for kids to know exactly where the toys go when it is clean up time, freeing you from having to walk them through it (after the age of 4 or so, anyway).
The 1.5 quart plastic bins fit most standard storage cube shelves and they are a good size for kids to be able to move around on their own.
Creating an organized house is not about having a picture perfect home at all times-good luck with that with kids around! It is about creating places for your things so the clutter can be easily cleaned up providing you and your family with more time to spend enjoying each other. Be productive in the year ahead and clear the clutter by creating a place for everything.
What are your favorite simple ways to stay more organized?