If you have been reading here for a while you may remember the Tackle It Tuesday post I put together for 5 Minutes For Mom where I began organizing the kids play room, specifically setting up an art and homework station for them.  Yes I am one of those 'everything has it's place' kind of people and I just love to organize, re-arrange, and upcycle until everything is as close to perfect as I can get.

Well, my project kind of ended there and I moved on to organizing a little more in my office.  I never did go back and finish the play room, and there are still boxes of the kids art and craft supplies in the garage that haven't been unpacked.  So when I was asked to participate in a 'Thin to Win' challenge by Sargento Cheese it gave me the kick up the backside that I needed to actually pick up where I left off.  The specific challenge handed to me was: "Get organized by removing the clutter from a room in your house, and tell us what you did to simplify your living space."

This was the space before (or should I say, how I left it):

Kids room ideas

So my challenge for this space was to finally unpack another box or two of supplies in the garage (which is still overrun with boxes), and fill up those black shelves. I also wanted to add some more items such as a lamp, and computer to the space for not only over the summer vacation, but also once school starts back again.  The kids will be home for a long time over the summer, and although we have a lot of fun activities planned outside the home and I'm sure quite a lot of the summer will be spent in our pool, there will certainly be downtime indoors, and let's face it I work from home so there are times when I need a little peace and quiet to get some work done, and I need a space where the kids can play quietly on their own.

Although there is still more I would like to do in this room (I can't wait for the giant world map I've ordered for the wall to get here), this is where we are at today.   The garage is a little lighter, and the kids are a little more organized for the summer.

Play rooms

The kids grandmother kindly donated her old desktop computer, which the kids love watching the occasional video on, and playing their Rusty and Rosy activities.  They also know how to turn it off and on by themselves which is a big plus, and there are blocks in place so they cannot access anything untoward.

I found a floor lamp and shade that I just loved and is perfect for the kids to use as it gets dark out, especially seeing as there is no ceiling light in that space.  Although I do have big plans for that lampshade and there will be crafting involved.

Next up was to figure out a way to store some of the kids smaller items and hopefully be able to fit them into those little shelves without them ending up in a big mess at the end of each day.

I found small tubs that are the perfect size to fit in each compartment.  I also found some round labels in the large stash of labels in my office and painted them with four coats of chalkboard paint to write on the contents of each box (which also encourages the kids reading).  I filled each box with items such as stickers, perler beads, wooden and handmade stamps, mini notepads, felt pieces for their felt creations boards, and assorted stationery items.  Combine that with the coloring books already in the blue bin, the hand-painted chalkboard table, as well as mini chalkboards, and handmade books, this stash is sure to keep the kids entertained. 

You might also notice small brown tubs on top of the black shelving units.  These contain little gifts for the kids.   When they show exceptional behavior at school or sports and I receive an extra good report from their teacher they get to choose a small wrapped gift from their box.  These are little things such as matchbox cars, mini craft projects, and other assorted items that cost no more than about $3 each. 

I encourage you to head on over to the Sargento Cheese Facebook page and submit an entry in the 'Thin to Win' challenge and share how you are thinning out your life, because we all have things we want to thin out and organize.  There are different challenges over 45 days so be sure to check back daily for new challenges and for a chance to win a variety of prizes.  You will have 24 hours to submit an entry for this particular challenge. 

Disclosure: I received products and compensation from Sargento Foods Inc. and The Motherhood as part of my participation in this campaign.

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Nat May 23, 2012 - 6:21 am

I am so going to buy a shelf like those for our kitchen- I simply don’t have enough space for all of Anna’s art work and materials. Not to mention the play-doh and beads…. someday it will end and I’ll miss all of her stuff- I just have to remind myself of that. 🙂

Jenn @ Home is Where You Start From May 23, 2012 - 4:29 pm

it looks like a really nice place to hang out! Great job!


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