Let’s get right to it, why do our houses become disorganized and chaotic?! Rather than constantly trying to re-organize and do epic deep cleaning sessions every few months, let’s talk about WHY it’s becoming messy and disorganized in the first place. And in my opinion, this boils down to what is coming INSIDE or your intake.
Once you’ve cleaned and organized your whole house, there really is no reason for it to go back to being disorganized unless your intake system is not working well for your family. So today I want to talk a little bit about the entry points of your home, how to limit your intake, and to make those places beautiful as well as functional for your family.
Whether you’re an empty nester or you have five little ones or it’s you and your pup, setting your entry up for organization is going to save you so much time and effort in the long run when it comes to staying organized. We all have things that we take in and out of the house, things that we need to grab as we’re running out the door. And we all are bringing things home that then will need a place to go in our home, in order to keep it organized. So let’s talk about a few key pieces that I think make an effective entry.
First things first, every home and family is different in how they handle coming and going. In our home, we have a strict “no shoes” policy and so our entry points definitely require somewhere to put shoes. Additionally, my kids have backpacks and extracurricular activities that have their own gear. We love our locker systems for that reason. And to be able to have a place where Joe can easily find his wallet and keys on the way out is what works best for us.
So before anything else, make a quick list of what you regularly need when you leave and what you regularly bring home, this will be important to figure out how to set up your entry!
Oh my gosh. Paper. I feel like as we have moved into the twenty-first century, the amount of paper that needs to come into the home is becoming less and less, which is so great. But nevertheless, it’s important to have a place for it. Are you bringing home bills? Homework? Papers to grade? Let’s make sure that you have a dedicated, clean, organized, place to put those papers.
My children have a basket in each of their lockers for school papers that they like to keep. We throw away junk mail before it ever comes in our home and whatever important paperwork comes in goes directly into the home office to have something done with it whether that’s paying a bill, inputting information into a calendar, or shredding.
I’d definitely recommend signing up for paperless billing for anything and everything. It’s so helpful in streamlining paper intake and is so much easier to keep track of via email!
Most of us have bags that come and go, whether that’s a gym bag or a briefcase, purse, or backpack. Make sure that your entry has a dedicated hook for your bag(s) so that it’s staying clean and in its place instead of strewn about the house.
Certainly in the winter, we are coming in out of our home in winter coats. Ideally a coat closet is located near your entry where you can neatly hang your coat but if that isn’t the case, placing a hook near your bag hook for your coat is a wonderful option. In the summer this hook may be used for umbrellas or a pool or beach bag.
There are a few important questions that I would ask myself when creating an organized entry around shoes.
- Do you allow shoes in the home? Do you walk upstairs or around to your master bedroom before removing shoes? Where will these shoes be removed or put on?
- Do I need seating to put shoes on/off?
- Where will the shoes in the entry be placed? Do I want them hidden or out?
- Do I require guests to remove their shoes? Where would I like them to put their shoes?
- Am I wearing one or two pairs of shoes every day that I’d like to keep in the entry?
Answering these questions should give you an idea as to what sort of storage you’re looking for when it comes to shoes. I prefer to have our family’s shoes hidden in a drawer inside each of their lockers. Those drawers are cleared out regularly and those shoes can be taken down to their closets where they can rest until they’re worn again.
Baskets in an entry table make a great, concealed option for shoe storage in the entry as well. In the winter, you may consider adding a boot tray to your entry if you are wearing winter boots they may be wet.
What do you have in your hands? Keys and trinkets need a place, too! I like to keep face masks and sunglasses in the car or in my purse. Usually am only carrying in car keys but occasionally Joe will also bring in his wallet. Keeping a tray on a table when you come inside is a great way to make sure you’re not forgetting the necessities on your way in and out!
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Limiting your intake, and having a place for it when it does, cuts back on the overwhelm and mess that can quickly pile up!I hope these tips help you to do just that!