DGOTA: Closet

My most recent “Dude, Get On That Already” challenge may seem small, but small projects add up! And, honestly, it’s HUGE in a small kinda way. Okay, that makes zero sense, but I’ve got a serious case of Pregnancy Brain, so it’s a miracle that I can speak in complete sentences. 😉

Anyhoo, I started this “project” a little while ago by taking a rather large haul of unused or unwanted goodies to Goodwill, including some purses and lots o’ shoes. I went from two totes (which were both housed in “my” closet, now the nursery closet) down to one. A single tote housing all of my purses/handbags/shoes…given how little of a “girlie girl” I am, I’m surprised how much I’m impressed by that.

From here, it took me awhile to finally clear out the rest of the closet, but consider it DONE! If my hubby could reduce his space usage by one closet and one dresser (down to one of each), the least I could do is FINALLY get off my tuckus and shift (and edit) some stuff. Sure, I’m leaving a couple of large, important items (um…y’know…my wedding dress) way in the back of the nursery closet, alongside the big ol’ bin of accessories, but there will still be plenty of room for the baby’s stuff. DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

Pay no attention to the scarves hanging on the closet door (and the messy bookshelf to the left). Every amateur actress needs a feather boa, right? 😉

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com The “rest” of the closet…where my wedding dress and other sundries live.
DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.comWinston had to remind me that our “big” luggage also will be housed,
atop the bin that holds my accessories.

And the closet’s still not quite done! I know, “dude, get on that already”…I know. It’s just lovely to have an empty space that we know will be filled with baby storage solutions and cute things. We already have a large board that we’ll be painting white and retrofitting to create a shelf above the closet pole. Er, rod. Whatever that thing is. Either way, I already expect it to be a bit of a challenge, since we did the same in Dave’s closet space and it. Was. A. Bear. I’m wishing for a pleasant surprise, especially now that the belly’s getting in the way more and more everyday.

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

What other storage solutions are we thinking of for the baby? Other than the closet (which is LOTS of space, considering the size of the rest of the house!), we’ve got a couple of empty drawers from a previous DGOTA challenge, which is miraculous in our house — or anyone’s house, it seems!

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

‘Tis a thing of beauty. This free space is mere feet away in our hallway, so it’s quite convenient. A little closer by, I’m stocking up (or will be) on baskets and bins that will help organize on shelves and other surfaces. Some items don’t have a job yet, but I’ve got a couple of possible ideas for them – such as a white, seriously-made-of-plastic-but-doesn’t-look-it “basket” that will be ideal for laundry OR diapers (or a still TBD use).

I’m also already indebted to a dear friend who lives *swoon* near an Ikea who will be picking up some hanging shelves for us (aaaaand possibly one for the office…shhh, she doesn’t know it yet ;-)), once I can determine exactly where they’ll go and what size we’ll need. Thanks to Pinterest and other ideas I’ve gleaned, I’ve got some…erm…”creative” ways to display and house some of the other goodies. Wait ‘n see.

Oh, and one of the most important storage factors involves a free dresser that will be getting a low-VOC paint job and new jewelry (hardware) to play a very important, not-just-for-storage role as a changing table. Now, let’s all hope it’s an okay size for this job!

Then there’s everyone’s favorite: “sneaky” storage. You know the kind. We’ve got this all over the house – from the two ottomans in our living room to the old “treasure chest” in our front room. In this case, I’ve got a mini-, faux leather ottoman ($7.49?! Sign me up!) and will be looking for a lidded basket or two (possibly the “soft” kind), especially for toys ‘n blankets. Oh, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a possible toy chest that my hubby’s rather fond of. I only wish I could paint it, but it’s got that “rustic” (read: orange wood that would look quite at home in a family camp) vibe that he seems to like going on. Hmm. Maybe that look will come back someday. One can only hope.

So, there’s obviously lots left to do in this space. But, like I said, every little project brings us closer to having a nursery where, once, there was a guest room-slash-dressing room. Purdy exciting! Now, on to that shelf!

Built-In Beauty

Organization can be a beautiful thing. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a “before shot” on this project because Dave had started working on it before I even realized what was happening. Before I knew it, every item in the upper cabinets was on the floor. I can’t really complain about that initiative, can I? That’s what I really call a “dude, get on that already” project!

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

The built-ins at the end of our upstairs hallway made me want to buy our house in the first place. It sounds silly, but we each had something about the house that made us realize that it had to be the first official “us” space (we had lived together in my apartment for only a short time before finding our house). Dave loved the front porch-slash-3 (or 4, depending on how warm you like to stay)-season-room, so to each his own. 🙂 Either way, the uniqueness of a craftsman-style house is hard to hate.

I try to reorganize this space once a year, but somehow some pills that we had accumulated were REALLY expired, so Dave put a bag together of medications that we’ll dispose of when a pharmacy holds a proper disposal drive.The same goes for lots of beauty items that had been compiled. I always figured that I’d just use them up, but I’d always purchase an eco-friendly option (and want to try it out) after running low on shampoo or body wash. I hardly even USE conditioner. So, after some thought and conversation, we realized that we could donate the un-used beauty products to a local facility called Evelyn’s House (which helps out young mothers and their children). I was ecstatic that, not only could we find a use for our items that were never going to be used and taking up way too much space, but that they could go to help out such an inspiring cause. Win-win!

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com
Here’s the whole shebang, well, way improved. Sheets on top, towels in the middle, random larger items (like a tote holding all of our travel-sized items, my “clothes shaver”, and Neti-Pot), and all toiletries (organized accordingly) and first aide items in plastic containers on the bottom. Seriously, the “before” was craziness.

So, after some moving around…followed by still more shifting…followed by lots more finagling…we figured out how to utilize the space. And, who knows? Next year, it may look completely different. But what I’m most excited about is that we emptied some of the lower drawers for more storage. Y’know. Like for seasonal clothes…or baby stuff. 🙂

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

How’d we empty drawers? Well, one way was by getting absolutely brutal about what we need. Seriously, how many semi-complete sets of sheets do folks need? Then, we found space to pile the towels and sheets (which, by the way, don’t look any nicer utilizing the “Martha Stewart – put all sheets into one pillowcase trick”…just sayin’) on the shelves rather than hiding away in the drawers. I kind of like that it makes the space look a little airier rather than “stuff laden”. I’m sure a cute basket or two will help add some more storage prettiness, eventually.

On a side note, this project occurred well over a week ago (more like two or three weekends ago). LAST weekend, we did some more organizational work…but there’s still lots more to do, so I won’t bug you with it. Not yet. 😉 And the ultimate goal with all this craziness is to create more usable space in our home to make a new baby’s arrival slightly less stressful than it already will be. We’d much rather focus on learning how to parent; not where to fit stuff and having our home AND minds cluttered. Not a very positive way to live, is it? So, every little bit of work that we’re doing – from Drylok-ing the basement to cleaning out a built-in to filling bags for Goodwill – bring us one step closer to the “more fun” baby stuff (nursery decorating, etc).

Built-In Beauty

Organization can be a beautiful thing. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a “before shot” on this project because Dave had started working on it before I even realized what was happening. Before I knew it, every item in the upper cabinets was on the floor. I can’t really complain about that initiative, can I? That’s what I really call a “dude, get on that already” project!
DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

The built-ins at the end of our upstairs hallway made me want to buy our house in the first place. It sounds silly, but we each had something about the house that made us realize that it had to be the first official “us” space (we had lived together in my apartment for only a short time before finding our house). Dave loved the front porch-slash-3 (or 4, depending on how warm you like to stay)-season-room, so to each his own. 🙂 Either way, the uniqueness of a craftsman-style house is hard to hate.

I try to reorganize this space once a year, but somehow some pills that we had accumulated were REALLY expired, so Dave put a bag together of medications that we’ll dispose of when a pharmacy holds a proper disposal drive.The same goes for lots of beauty items that had been compiled. I always figured that I’d just use them up, but I’d always purchase an eco-friendly option (and want to try it out) after running low on shampoo or body wash. I hardly even USE conditioner. So, after some thought and conversation, we realized that we could donate the un-used beauty products to a local facility called Evelyn’s House (which helps out young mothers and their children). I was ecstatic that, not only could we find a use for our items that were never going to be used and taking up way too much space, but that they could go to help out such an inspiring cause. Win-win!

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com
Here’s the whole shebang, well, way improved. Sheets on top, towels in the middle, random larger items (like a tote holding all of our travel-sized items, my “clothes shaver”, and Neti-Pot), and all toiletries (organized accordingly) and first aide items in plastic containers on the bottom. Seriously, the “before” was craziness.

So, after some moving around…followed by still more shifting…followed by lots more finagling…we figured out how to utilize the space. And, who knows? Next year, it may look completely different. But what I’m most excited about is that we emptied some of the lower drawers for more storage. Y’know. Like for seasonal clothes…or baby stuff. 🙂

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

How’d we empty drawers? Well, one way was by getting absolutely brutal about what we need. Seriously, how many semi-complete sets of sheets do folks need? Then, we found space to pile the towels and sheets (which, by the way, don’t look any nicer utilizing the “Martha Stewart – put all sheets into one pillowcase trick”…just sayin’) on the shelves rather than hiding away in the drawers. I kind of like that it makes the space look a little airier rather than “stuff laden”. I’m sure a cute basket or two will help add some more storage prettiness, eventually.

On a side note, this project occurred well over a week ago (more like two or three weekends ago). LAST weekend, we did some more organizational work…but there’s still lots more to do, so I won’t bug you with it. Not yet. 😉 And the ultimate goal with all this craziness is to create more usable space in our home to make a new baby’s arrival slightly less stressful than it already will be. We’d much rather focus on learning how to parent; not where to fit stuff and having our home AND minds cluttered. Not a very positive way to live, is it? So, every little bit of work that we’re doing – from Drylok-ing the basement to cleaning out a built-in to filling bags for Goodwill – bring us one step closer to the “more fun” baby stuff (nursery decorating, etc).

Getting On Track

After a downer of a, well, week, I’m…well, I’m still pretty down, but am trying my best to get through it. All will work out. It has to. 🙂

So, to feel that I have SOME control in life, I decided to do a little (very little) bit of organizing. Sometimes anything larger seems too daunting. But this I could handle.

We purchased these wall organizers from Target awhile ago. Like, before we were married. I knew I loved their design and neutral palette, but didn’t quite know what to do with them. Today, inspiration struck. I drilled 4 screws into the wall with all my might – seriously, our walls are like cement – and hung them up.

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

 Now, I have one system for my current theater goings-on and another for my important bills ‘n things. In a huge confession of personal flaw, I must say that while I pay my bills (mostly) on time, I’m horrible at keeping them organized and getting them filed away. So, this system will not only keep them from stacking up on my desk, but will remind me “oh, yeah, that’s getting way too full…time to file.” Or, at least, that’s what I’m telling myself. 😉

The bottom section of the “personal bills” container is for current “must pay” bills – a visual to give me that good kind of stress that says “Hey, stupid, pay this.” The larger back part is for stuff that has to be filed.

The other container houses recent minutes in the top, large section and miscellaneous theater things (as you see, a script I have to read, among other odds ‘n ends) in the bottom. Since Dave and I are (gasp) officially planning on still being on the board next season (unless we receive a flood of nominations from the floor at our next dinner meeting), I’m encouraged to have things in a normal, orderly, shall-I-say routine spot.

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

While I was at it, I finally decided to fling my plan of finding proper frames, and simply nail up our New Year’s Resolution collages. So, here they are: 

DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com
DGOTA: Closet - image  on http://megactsout.com

You can’t quite see all of our goals (in visual form) in this picture, which is a good thing – some of them are kinda personal and it’s nice to keep some things private. But, for those wondering, here are the highlights (in no particular order):
– More eco-friendly products, represented by the Tom’s toothpaste and Meyer’s cleaning liquid.
– Kitties! Yep, we found a sketch of a cat, which is strange because we got our second cat shortly after snipping the picture. Aaaand who knows, perhaps we’ll get a third! (I may be going crazy, what do you think?)
– Keeping an open mind.
– More all-natural eating, from more fruits ‘n veggies to making our own salad dressing. The hardest part is using up the numerous dressings we already have on hand, especially after tasting my very own homemade thousand islands…and, recently, my very own homemade thousand islands with homemade mayo. Yes. Yes, I am going crazy, I think…but it’s kinda fun. At least I don’t have relish made from homemade pickles or homemade ketchup. Yet.
– Writing more/tapping into our creative sides.

– Home improvement on a budget!
– Finding happiness, wherever it is and whatever it may mean. 

So, there’s my little corner of our office. It’s starting to match the other walls a little more, even if that may mean “clutter.” To me, it’s “us”. We’ve got a huge movie poster of “The Philadelphia Story”, a crappy painting I did of sleeping Beardslee, some floating shelves, and tons of sketches and we’re-so-proud articles of Dave’s. It may not be 50-50 yet, but eventually the office will belong to both of us…and hopefully turn into one of my favorite places in the house, rather than one of my least faves.