Shared Boys’ Room Mini Makeover

 

No we have not been burgled. This is the “before” shot of the boys’ room. The aftermath of Christmas, going away on a mini break and general school holiday slack-heartedness (is that even a word)? I know it’s hard to look at, but it’s real and I’m sharing it so we can all be even more excited when I post the “after” shot in a minute.

The first step is to GET RID OF STUFF.  Sort the STUFF into three piles – Keep, Chuck and Donate.

If your kids are anything like mine, they form an immediate and unbreakable attachment to anything that looks like it is headed for the bin.  Mine have even been known to retrieve stuff from the bin and return, hugging it like a long lost friend.  Hence, I find the “chucking out” part of the clean up is best done when the kids are not home, if at all possible.  I am ruthless – if it has unfixable broken parts or missing parts that will never return, it’s gone.

Next step is to donate toys they have outgrown.  We always involve our boys in this as it gives them ownership of the process and also teaches them about community and that good ole gratitude I am always banging on about.

We sometimes choose to sell a few items if the kids are saving for something special, but most are donated on.  We especially like to help families in need who are moving into a new home for one reason or another.  That’s another story for another day.

Once all THE STUFF IS GONE it’s time to find new homes for everything that remains.

The big old chest of drawers was on it’s last legs after serving us well through pre-marriage and the first ten years of parenting.  The shiny new IKEA set (surely they will start sponsoring me soon, right?!) we purchased are perfect for this phase of life. Super dooper affordable, reasonably robust and the deep drawers run smoothly, making my most loathed task of putting washing away almost bearable.  I got a bit carried away organising inside the drawers so I will do another post on that soon.

As this was a mini makeover we opted for some cheap and cheerful linen, some new wooden bunting and a couple of new accessories to freshen things up for the new year.  Add these to the existing original artworks and pieces already in the room and we have the eclectic look we love (OK, the eclectic look I love) without breaking the budget.

Drumroll please as we unveil the boys “new” room …

JW beds after shot

Can we all take a moment to hold virtual hands and focus on the CLEAR floor and CLOSED drawers.   Ommmmmmmm ….

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Back to School Organisation

Firstly, I’m sorry I’ve been absent of late however we have been planning and preparing for our “baby” to start school.  Let’s just say it took me a while to come to terms with this giant leap forward.  After cramming in as many “special days” as possible, I finally had to concede that time was marching on and our littlest guy was ready for the next phase, whether I liked it or not.

Apart from the emotional conflict , I was also concerned about how on earth I was going to keep everyone organised once we had three little students under our roof.  The school notes alone make my head spin …

They say necessity is the mother of all invention so my overwhelming need to avoid the usual morning chaos and “Shouty Mama” drove the development of our new School HQ. Ta daaaaah!

School HQ

It’s an easy IKEA hack, completed by hubby and I without any domestic disputes whatsoever! The basic unit is the Kallax, a bargain at $159 (no, this is not a sponsored post, we just love IKEA).  During construction, we (OK, hubby) left out the bottom row of shelves to allow space to hang school backpacks and store school shoes.  We have used stick on hooks to avoid damaging the unit.

School HQ bags

There is a shelf for hats and water bottles, and another to house readers, library books etc.

I’ve made a (not-so) fancy new folder for the millions of notes that come home and previously would be stuck on our already crowded fridge, left in a crumpled mass in the bottom of a school bag, or just lost.  Notes will be filed under the relevant child’s name, or general subjects such as band, sport and finances.

JW memo

Because our printer is currently on the fritz we hacked a Kikki K Kontrast Weekly planner document.  You could, of course, easily make your own personalised version which I believe would be waaaay cuter.

This planner is a prompt so the boys all know what they have on each day, giving them the independence to pack for their own requirements eg musical instrument, sports equipment etc. The littlest still needs help but takes great pride on packing his bag like his big brothers.

Just one week into the school term, we are yet to reap the rewards of our new HQ and I don’t expect it to look this pretty for too long however I do believe it is an important step in saving my sanity whilst teaching my boys to plan ahead.  Fingers crossed.

How do you and your family stay organised for school?

school shoes cropped

creative kids – eggy inspiration

The GORGEOUS Ella’s Inspiration blog is in Swedish*, but that’s hardly important when we can look at all the pretty pictures!  Check out these fab eggy ideas – party eggs, royal eggs and egg place cards.  All fabulous inspiration no matter what your plans for the Easter break.

king eggs party eggs egg place card

Happy egg painting peeps. x

* There is a ‘translate’ option on the blog

handy hints – artwork displays

I have had a pile of kids artworks sitting in our foyer awaiting framing and hanging forever. This week I finally acknowledged I will never find the time for that, so have resorted to this fab quick fix washi tape solution.

artworks

I’m loving it and think it suits our casual little home perfectly. What do you think?

creative kids – that’s NOT a box!

There’s an old saying that you can just give the kid a cardboard box rather than it’s contents and they will have just as much fun.

These ideas from Lil Sugar take the humble cardboard box to a whole new level!

cardboard box 1 cardboard box 2 cardboard box 3 cardboard box 4 cardboard box 5

If this is all beyond your ability or available time, you might love these goodies from our little shop;

lf cars

Make Your Own Cardboard Cars – $14.95 for a pack of 6

CraftHouseLifestyle01_RGBsml

Build & Paint Your Own Farmhouse $19.95