Saturday, January 5, 2013

Hodgepodge Organizing Ideas for a Multi-purpose Kitchen, Dining and Mudroom Space

I don't profess to be an any kind of interior design or organization guru.  But I do try to make our house and spaces functional for us, in unique ways - on the cheap.  In 2013, I plan to do a better job at loving my house and not wishing it were different.  In that spirit, I have decided to showcase some of the hodgepodge ways I have set up our house to work for us!

This post will focus on our kitchen/dinette area.  It's one big room, that has to meet the following purposes:  entry from the garage, storage of all kitchen stuff, cooking/dishes/fridge, eating, laundry room, and shoe/coat/mudroom for me, hubs, Ivy (4) and baby Roy (2).  All.In.One.Big.Room.  Argh!  Here are some of the things I've done to 'make it work':
1.  We do something funky every year with our Christmas cards.  I got a lot of flack the year I hung them on the window blinds!  This year we taped them all around our dinnette area wall and back door.  I love it and plan to leave it up until they start falling down!

2.  On the back door to the garage, we have magnetic 'cups' designed for school lockers (Target).... but we use them for extra keys, chalk, pens, and clips.  I got the dragonfly hook at a garden store.  We've added a few kid touches!  The dry/erase marker is for a d/e board hung on the wall beside the door.
3. I love this little hook I've had forever given to me by my aunt, and affixed it to the cabinet by the back door for hanging our car keys.
4.  [Not pictured]  Right when you walk in the back door, we have a large wooden book shelf that we use for extra storage.  Three large blue bins hold 'extra stuff' (like flash lights, twine, tape, etc.), onions/potatoes, and kid stuff (like the ballet bag).  We also use it to store our wine, paper towels, mail, and my purse.  Who needs new cabinets when you can use a $20 bookshelf?

5.  In total hodgepodge fashion, I took an old curtain rod and affixed it over the sink so I could hang a plant the kids gave me one mother's day, and some other special things - like a bouquet of flowers Ivy picked for me in the spring, and some dried roses a friend gave us.
6.  We don't have a mudroom and have devised a solution of hanging coats currently in use on the *outside* of the coat closet using an over-the-door hanger, with a little space on top for gloves and hats.  It's not the prettiest thing, but it's very functional, it gets used, and coats are not on the floor.
7.  This is our daycare/calendar 'command center'.  We use Google Calendar for the family calendar, but this calendar has family pictures (I made it using MyMemories) and helps us know what day it is :).  I affixed Command hooks to our 1940's era hutch, and the kids can hang their own lighter jackets and scarves up.  You can kind of see the little green storage ottomans too, where the kids can throw their shoes and hats inside.  Out of sight, but still accessible so the kids can get things themselves!

Stay tuned for the next installment when I focus on the play room.  The highlighted hodge podge continues!

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