Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Conquering the Final Frontier!!

After moving to our new house in October, I kept myself Busy unpacking boxes, organizing and decorating the main living areas of our house.  Once we got settled in a bit and everything was livable, I turned the bulk of my attention to homeschooling, cooking for my crowd, and daily maintenance.  Then the Holidays hit, and it pretty much took all my energy and focus to navigate November and December with some degree of dignity and grace!  ;)

During that time, our huge bonus room upstairs became a dumping ground for everything we didn't know what to do with!   Think boxes and boxes of books and videotapes and DVDs and computer games and toys and old school papers and files, etc!!!  Plus, any odd pieces of furniture we didn't have room for downstairs.  Add in some dirty laundry left there by my not-so-neat boys, some empty gatorade bottles and cups, partially filled bags of trash, and many other stray items and you are beginning to get the picture!  It was a Ginormous Mess!!!!

In fact, when I entered the room, it was just too overwhelming!  I had no idea where to start to tackle the mess. . . . and would just walk right back out in despair!

See for yourself (as I throw my reputation totally to the wind) . . .





 




You sort of thought I was exaggerating, didn't you??


big sigh.




Yes, it was just as bad as I said!  And would probably still look like a landfill today, if it weren't for Martin Luther King, Jr.  . . . and my wonderful daughter, Tiffany!


The MLK holiday meant that Tiffany didn't have to leave to drive back home until Monday afternoon, and because she is such an Awesome Daughter and an Organizing Queen, she rolled up her sleeves and helped me dive into the mess.  She was overwhelmed too, but she said we could tackle it together, and we did!!

Thanks to the Draft plus some brave Volunteers, we soon had an Army of helpers, which helped the job go faster!

Still, it was a BIG job!  I worked in there practically all day Monday, and for several hours yesterday with Chris and then a couple more hours today!!!  There are still a couple more boxes to sort through  . . . but I'm almost done, and I can't wait to show you the pictures of what was accomplished!


Here is a before/after picture of the huge linen closet that we turned into a storage closet for games and my set of old BJ HomeSat DVDs.



I have Chris and Joe to thank for its transformation!  Didn't they do a good job organizing it??


Here is the corner with my teacher supply cabinet and the little reading nook that I created.  My boys laugh at me, but I love to create cozy little reading areas, and hope that it will encourage these boys to pick up a book -- instead of a mouse, a remote or a nunchuk!  :)



Beside the reading corner is our old breakfast table, which now makes a great place to do homework and/or play games.  Currently, it is the "Axis and Allies table," as the boys keep a game underway for days at a time!




This picture looking straight ahead shows some of the bookcases full of our many books, the sitting area for "chilling" or watching movies, and the flat screen TV which is also used for playing Wii games.  On top of the bookcases you can see the many chess trophies won by the three oldest boys back when we lived in SC and they competed in Scholastic Chess Tournaments.



Here is an inside look at my teacher cabinet.  After getting everything unpacked and organized, I see that I won't need to worry about catching any of the back-to-school sales next year!  It appears that I have a lifetime supply of notebook paper and multi-colored folders!



Another view of this room, which is now very inviting!


Can you believe the transformation??



I will end with this priceless picture -- Luke helping Bethany with her worktext page!!  Oh, how I love to see brotherly love in action!!!!   :)


17 comments:

Mrs. Huse Clifton said...

oh my what a great room. The space. Ah it would be so nice. You guys did a lovely job.

tlmalcolm said...

I loved seeing the mess! Now I know you have a hoarding secret that confirms the fact that you have genes from the Malcolm side!!:) We have enough spiral notebooks with just a few pages written on to last a life time in our attic office! I can't bare to throw them out. And Fred hoards broken car parts from cars we no longer own! And we all need a room where all that stuff can gather without the rest of our house looking like a mess!! Hooray for Tiffany to get you motivated to tackle the project!!

The Mayo Family said...

I love it!
Now that that is done....
You & Tiffany can come up & bring your warm jackets and help me out!
What do we do if we do not have that room...she seems creative enogh! Well think of a area!
Looks wonderful!
Blessings~
~Lori

Donna G. said...

It looks great, Elizabeth! I'm envious.

I did the reverse. I got our gameroom in perfect order after we moved here nearly 10 years ago. However, the kids were older and never used it much, so it became a dumping ground. I walk in there, turn around, and go back out.

PS. I had to go up there yesterday to look for a book. I found a pile of clothes like someone had changed in the middle of the room. The pants are dress pants. Guys . . ..

Samantha said...

Looks great!! When we transformed our pit of a playroom into our new classroom right after Thanksgiving, I was happy, and wished we had done it sooner! http://www.thekelleyeight.com/2010/12/place-for-everything.html

What is that allies, is that a game? I have never heard of it, and noticed several in your game closet.

Jules said...

You've done so well! We had a room like that when we first moved into our house. For months it was filled with boxes and discarded wrapping paper that had kept all our precious items safe in transit. I think it was close to a year before I finally sorted it out and even now - 15 years later - it still doesn't look as great as your room.

Michelle (She Looketh Well) said...

I love it! I love, love, love organizing. I love containers. I love making charts and schedules! I simply adore rubbermaid container, all sizes, I am not partial! I soaked up your picture, I'm geeky like that LOL

Noel said...

love that word "ginormous"! seriously as I was beginning to read your post, I was thinking "my final frontier would be my boys' room" Wow, those boys know how to make a mess, but they really know how to pick it up too :D Good job on your room, it's a wonderful space!

Carrie said...

I feel your pain. We also have ten children, 18 and under, and just moved almost a month ago. Your house is very lovely!

www.ourfullhouse.com

Rebecca's Refining said...

You are so fortunate that you have that huge room to store all that! Plus, it is out of sight! :)

You did a great job organizing. The room looks so cozy and inviting! I'm glad Tiffany was able to get you motivated to clean and organize. I love looking at a job well done!

Christi said...

That room is bigger than our apartment! And definitely bigger than the trailer we are moving into! Do you need any more stuff???

Great job, Our's family!

Martie said...

Wow, it looks wonderful! Great job!

Linda B said...

I wish I could conquer my last frontiers (which actually feel like first and middle frontiers) like you guys. Well done!

mommyx12 said...

Whoa! The transformation is awesome. I love it. That is one huge room. I sure wish I owned it! That definitely would be our main living area for sure. And probably sleeping since many of my kids love camping out together in the same room.

I laughed when you told me about leaving Joseph. I did the same thing with my 4 year old son back when the twins were babies. We had left grandmas house and about a mile away stopped at taco bell and it was then I realized instead of 9 children ordering I only had 8. I sent my eldest (then 16) back for him and he was still in the basement playing a nintendo game and hadn't even realized we had left. I don't think I posted this story in that post but if I did I guess you got to read it twice!!

take care,
tricia

Ruby said...

Hello there, just calling over from Mommyx12. Love your blog and family! This post is great. I love before and after pics. Isn't it rewarding when the hard work is done and things look sooooo good! That is a fantastic space in your new home.

Diane said...

What a great large space. You guys did a wonderful job.
Blessings
Diane

Julie said...

Wow, after seeing your nice and organized school supply cabinet I feel the need to clean mine out. What a great space you have made:) I enjoyed my visit to your blog very much!

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