Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Works for Me Wednesday

When we moved into our house we had two kids, with #3 on the way. The oldest two are boys, this means that on any given season (summer or winter) they each own no more then two pairs of shoes (not including snowboots.) During this time, one child was in preschool, so only one backpack, with one set of school papers streaming into my house.

I knew times were a changin'

We were about to welcome kid #3. That child would be a girl. And anyone who has a girl in their house knows that two pairs of shoes, per child, during any given season, doesn't cut it.

And the papers, backpacks, and school supplies, oy vey! In two years I would have one child in preschool, and another in elementary school. Two years after that I would have three children with backpacks, school papers, calendars, schedules, sports, notes from teachers, .... Basically, a never ending flow of paper and activities.

We needed to find an organizational system, and quick. Because those 4 pairs of shoes, one backpack, one school calendar, and a multitude of hats, gloves, and snow boots were already driving me crazy.

Enter my shoe, basket storage system. Two cubbies for each child, one for shoes and one for hats, gloves, sunglasses, Transformers, purses, headphones, Matchbox cars, play phones, and whatever else they can stuff in there. I payed dearly for it, but it was oh so worth it.

Enter my big black wall.

At least that is what I called it, soon after beginning the project. I painted those first few layers of magnetic paint and suddenly experienced cold feet, I sensed that this was not such a good idea.

Magnetic and chalk board paint is not cheap, so to afford this project I saved our credit card points and traded them in for Home Depot gift cards. When I ran out of those I used Michael's 40% coupons for the cans of paint.

The project took a tad more magnetic paint then expected, and it has taken me a few years to figure out how to make this work for our family. However, it is finally working.

One of my frustrations was my lack of keeping it up-to-date. Many times we found ourselves greeting a new year, with last summer's camp schedule still on the board.

To help keep the board up-to-date I painted over old magnets and used permanent marker to write an activity, such as swimming or dance class and a class, such as PE or library.

Next, I'm thinking of painting some more magnets, a different color, to indicate chores.

This board works for our family, helping us stay organized during the school year, reminding us at a glance what is happening, for whom, and when. And, with three children staying organized is a necessity to survive.

***Before you paint your own big black wall I suggest looking into removable chalkboard or dry erase panels (I couldn't find the dry erase panels on Amazon, but have seen them at my local Target.) Less permanent, and probably costs the same, or less, then the many cans of paint I bought.

Interested in more Works for Me Wednesday head over to Kristen's at We are THAT Family.

1 comment:

Sharon said...

I can totally see how the cubby boxes would be a life saver.

And the "big black wall" is really funky too... It's like a family mural of all your activities and interests. I love it!

If you're interested, I'm hosting a blog carnival about JOY and would love to have you link up.... You can share anything that you've written about the things that have brought joy to your life!

Hope to see you there!