However, this year I've already told myself that the downstairs of our house is not allowed to get cluttered beyond the norm. (We usually have an odd box of diapers or kid/kitty toys strewn haphazardly around, but it's a quick pick-up.) Last year, I used the dining room as the dump-all for shopping bags full of gifts, wrapping accoutrements, and so forth. This year, with an active toddler about, something's gotta give.
So, while I'm working on getting our office clean enough to then get messy (doesn't make 100% sense to me, either, but we'll get there) and *finally* working on our coat closet (at least I didn't have to switch from summer over to winter...ahem....), we realized that we'd already had enough of another mess-related issue in our house -- the kitchen cabinets.
Namely, our lower ones. We never put the safety things on 'em because we're okay with Hadley playing with certain harmless items (namely anything plastic and storage containers). The under-sink ones DO have safety thingamabobbers on them, but those that have all of my kitchen prep and baking items have been open season. He's pretty good about leaving them alone, but the one thing he's consistently being told not to go after is...dun dun duuuuuun, the blender unit. The glass pitcher isn't an issue, but the buttons and long cord are too much for him; he won't take "no" (and I mean NO) for an answer.
So, instead of giving him a constant reason to be scolded, we emptied the three main cabinets (the fourth is pretty much all set...as well as it can be) and did the "what do we need/what do we use" analysis. There is a lot of psychology involved in organization, after all.
Here's the offending blender cabinet...
And the mess as a whole...
Yes, they look nasty. They're clean, I promise. I'm hoping to give them a coat of paint this winter. :-) My strategy this time was to use the back space to place serving plates and muffin tins, and the lower back space for appliances (popcorn popper, blender, mini chopper) so that Hadley will *hopefully* find something else much safer in the front to pique his interest before reaching anything with a cord. Only time will tell whether this was a genius solution or if it will send us back to the drawing board.
And here's the crap we were left with. How do we end up with so many plastic storage lids...and no matching containers?? Oh, and that insulated lunch bag is so thin it's borderline useless in our household. I'm a lover of glass storage containers, and they won't sit flat in there. I'm sure we'll put it aside to use some day (or replace it with another much more user-friendly version).
On to the always-hated office clean-up! I've got a couple of ideas that may help with our wrapping craziness, if I can execute them. That makes the filing worth it in the end...right? RIGHT?? What are you gettin' together this holiday season? Or are you just throwing your hands up until the dust (or, snow, as it were) settles?