Spring cleaning

Not our own giveaway, but visit Homestead Drying Racks for a chance to win Homesteading for Beginners (a 3 DVD set)

It’s a fact of life that blogging slows down when spring cleaning starts up.  Today was bright, sunny, and in the 70’s.  We couldn’t resist.  We cleaned the storage shed.

Maybe you don’t have a storage shed so you miss the grandeur of this undertaking.  Or maybe you just don’t allow your children to carry stuff down to your storage shed while you sit and blog, so your shed doesn’t look like mine did.

Either way, we forgot to take before and after photos and I hang my head in shame.  I have failed as a blogger.

We were motivated largely by the fact that last weekend we managed to free up all 3 dressers in the house plus the nightstand.  We were able to organize the shed properly this time because we were able to add proper storage options rather than forcing some poor soul to decide between tossing 3 space heaters and 19 out-of-season dresses up into the rafters or climbing across 4 box fans, a double stroller, and a full size mattress to put the stuff on top of a 20 gallon fish – er, snake tank.

Are you laughing at my optimism that this time the shed will stay organized?  Are you wondering how can possibly believe this time will be different than all the other times we organized the shed?  I knew it.  Go ahead and snicker.  I’m ignoring you.  I’m pretending you’re just wondering how we managed to free up all the dressers.

And how did we free up the dressers?  Like this:

See?  Cubbies!  We love them!  It’s a work in progress: we plan to add a few more upward to create a sort of zig-zag line from upper left down to the window, then a little jag up on the right, sort of framing the window.  Make sense?  Well, it does in my head.  It looks nice, really.  Much nicer than this times two:

That wall of cubbies holds the clothes of 6 of the children, plus space for books, jewelry, toys, etc.  The 4 youngest have their clothes in my room, but they each have one cubby of their own here in the Kid Room for their toys as well.

We put a similar system in our own bedroom, but it’s much smaller.  Perry and I each have a 2×3 unit for a nightstand/dresser, and another conglomeration holds clothes for the 4 little ones plus shoes for all six of us.

Before – Ancient dresser on Mom’s side crammed with clothes for 4.  Nightstand on Dad’s side mostly crammed with forgotten and unidentified junk.

After – Mom’s side of the room:

Dad’s side of the room:

Did you notice our bling?  I have my jewelry organizer, improvised from a glassless picture frame.

Perry has a tie rack, topped by his grandfather’s old shoehorn.

Clothes for little people and shoes for all:

Hmmm.  Either I’m tired and grumpy, or it all looks better in real life.  Maybe I should have had one of my in-house photographers do the job.

Anyway, we’re all whupped tonight, and we all love our bedrooms now.  Tomorrow’s mission: potluck at our house with 40 or 50 people!


  1. Love it! We have the same Bob books, and those colored bean bag balls…I think we got those @ Cracker Barrel….hehe

  2. LOVE the cubbies! My kids each have one of those IKEA Expedit bookcases in their bedrooms with those cloth bins in them. Things have been much neater in there ever since.

    I covet a smaller one for my room and for the living room homeschool stuff too.

  3. I was wondering about the dagger mounted on the wall next to your side of the bed versus not too far under the mattress on Perry’s side. Actually, maybe that IS where his is and of course you wouldn’t advertise that….

    • Jamie,
      That’s Sting, the dagger from Tolkien’s LOTR story. It belongs to Perry but I haven’t moved it to his side yet. It was hung over the dresser we shared but now that the dresser has been replaced by our cubbies, all of Perry’s stuff is on his side – except Sting.

  4. I love the cubbies! What a great idea! We have very tight space, and this would be a tasteful and agreeable solution. Thanks for sharing and many blessings!

  5. LOVE your cubbies–beautiful!!!

  6. My sister has a similar system for toys for her two little girls (4 & 5). I am not sure where she got hers and her bins are cloth. They are real easy for the girls to use, but the fabric on the bins is ripping. It was a thin woven fabric and not made to take a lot of abuse. They shouldn’t be that hard to recover though. I do like the idea and all the colors!

  7. Elizabeth M. says:

    Genius! I think it looks great on the Internet. 🙂 Now if only I could figure out a way to get that organized….

  8. My favorite spring cleaning tip with a large family — invite your mother for a visit. It works! She gets the house way more spotless than I ever could and with a smile on her face! Now if I could just get it to stay that way…..

  9. Love the cubbies! What a versatile idea!

  10. I love reading your posts – you make me smile and laugh! *chuckle* Wish we lived closer as I am SURE I would really love having coffee with you (we’re in WA). *smile* Wanna see how we used cubbies to improve our kid’s closet, too? Love ’em!


    Blessings on your efforts today Kim!

  11. Love it! We use the same bins for toy organization/storage and I love it. I use larger cubbies to hold the buns (the wire snap together kind) though since tiny hands have a hard time getting the bins in the units that were made for them -and right now tiny hands are all we have 😉
    I really do love these storage solutions though! I would love to hear in a month or so how you like using them for storing clothes -will they get messy easily? is it a pain to dig to the bottom?
    Also do you think they would work for storing school supplies?
    We hope to move this spring/summer and as I set up our new home I would love to use these bins in more places around the house!

  12. zenobia says:

    great storage ideas Kim! could you share where you bought these partiular storage units? also the cubby inserts (boxes)… did you make them or buy them as well? thanks a bunch:)

    • Ours came from Target but they are widely available. The fabric boxes are designed to go with them, though a crafty person could easily improvise.

  13. Awesome organization and storage solutions for a tight space! Great job. 🙂

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