Space Takers: Play Room Edition

  • By birdie@getorganizedcolumbus.com
  • 23 Jan, 2017
Kids Playroom
Frequently I hear my clients say that the play room always looks like an explosion. Kids toys often are stored at kid height along the perimeter of rooms nearly encasing the entire space with what can feel like continuous clutter. So many toys these days require their own floor space like doll houses, and play […] 
Frequently I hear my clients say that the play room always looks like an explosion. Kids toys often are stored at kid height along the perimeter of rooms nearly encasing the entire space with what can feel like continuous clutter. So many toys these days require their own floor space like doll houses, and play mats, and lego sets. So much so, that it really is important to understand square footage and choose the items carefully to get the right fi. Even the neatest room will look cluttered if it is over filled.
The truth is, full rooms do not necessarily mean fully engaged kids. You especially want to eliminate space takers that don’t get used or simply have been outgrown. Here is a short list of things we frequently see that eat up square footage with low frequency of use:
  1. Painted furniture like wooden rocking chairs and rocking horses. These are things often purchased by adults who seek to make the room” look” child friendly. But in reality, kids hardly choose this hard surface sit in or use, even if their name is painted on it, or if it was a gift from their favorite grandparents.
  2.  
  3. Riding toys. Carpeted rooms are not the best place to play with these items or to store them. Consider where these will be used, and remember that they can be hung with hooks on the vertical space of our basement and garage walls.
  4.  
  5. Stuffed animals. Rarely are stuffed animal a “toy of choice” during active play time. A few may be useful for nap time and story time, but once they start filling up toy chests and shelves, and are strewn across the floor, these are stealing space.
  6.  
  7. Large motorized toy vehicles. These need to be purchased with care–understanding where they can be stored so they can be played with instead of parked. If they are an outdoor toy, is there convenient outdoor storage? If they will be used in a basement, can they be kept in that area?
  8.  
  9. Tented play houses. If these are something your kids love, then they should be given the space to enjoy. But you do not want these to end up in hallways or rooms intended for other things, or blocking beds or desks. Plan accordingly.
  10.  
  11. Race Tracks and Doll Furniture require lots of horizontal space. Consider other areas besides the floor to place these.
  12.  
  13. Desks. Desks are also useful, but flat horizontal tables with no storage may take up more room than it should without providing a home for crafts or school work. Make sure desks and play tables have plenty of storage designed for your child’s needs.
Having planned homes for toys is critical to achieve an uncluttered look. It also helps at put away time to know exactly where the items fit and belong. Overfilling a space will lead to the same cluttered results as never picking it up in the first place. So purchase with square footage in mind, and don’t be afraid to move things along that take more than they give.

Get Organized Columbus

By Tera Harmon 16 Jan, 2018
Ever have that feeling after your home has been cleaned that things still don't seem put away and tidy? Or maybe you get that nagging sense when you walk into a room that things still need a "once over." Even in frequently-cleaned homes, we can feel like there is more to do when our clutter is the first thing that catches our eye in each room. Well the clutter itself may not be the only culprit. Our house habits can help highlight the things we use in a way that is not flattering.  Can you recognize any of these hotspots in your home?
By Tera Harmon 08 Jan, 2018
Photo Credit: Jay Wennington
By Birdie Brennan 04 Dec, 2017
Photo Credit: Kari Shea
By Tera Harmon 27 Nov, 2017
I always look forward to this cooler time of year to review coats and to decide where best to donate them. So many times when we hear about making a donation, we feel pressure to give financially. But giving something once owned and loved can be a fulfilling part of holiday tradition. I especially love involving kids so they can learn the idea of thinking of others at this time of year. Showing our kids how to prepare an item for donation teaches them how to care for others, but it also shows them to consider how their belongings can be useful beyond their own toy box. The act of cleaning up a gently used truck or putting new batteries into a remote control car to donate demonstrates to kids that our items are valuable to others--and that condition matters. This donation ritual is also an important purge ritual before the influx of contents that are about to enter our homes. 
By Tera Harmon 16 Nov, 2017

For even the most novice cooks, between now and the end of the year, many kitchens are about to get a workout. We may be hosting parties, holiday meals, trying a new recipe or two, participating in pot lucks, or baking with friends and family. Would't it be great if everything we need is at our fingertips--clean and functional for when we need it?


So often the tools and items we rely on at this time of year are somewhere in the back of cupboards, sideboards, or stored on basement shelving. I recommend gathering, cleaning, and staging the items you know will be needed in the coming weeks. In last week's post ( https://www.getorganizedcolumbus.com/the-ready-made-pantry ) we talked about a well-stocked pantry for the holiday season; for now, let's focus on the items we will likely need in the kitchen and dining areas.
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Get Organized Columbus

By Tera Harmon 16 Jan, 2018
Ever have that feeling after your home has been cleaned that things still don't seem put away and tidy? Or maybe you get that nagging sense when you walk into a room that things still need a "once over." Even in frequently-cleaned homes, we can feel like there is more to do when our clutter is the first thing that catches our eye in each room. Well the clutter itself may not be the only culprit. Our house habits can help highlight the things we use in a way that is not flattering.  Can you recognize any of these hotspots in your home?
By Tera Harmon 08 Jan, 2018
Photo Credit: Jay Wennington
By Birdie Brennan 04 Dec, 2017
Photo Credit: Kari Shea
By Tera Harmon 27 Nov, 2017
I always look forward to this cooler time of year to review coats and to decide where best to donate them. So many times when we hear about making a donation, we feel pressure to give financially. But giving something once owned and loved can be a fulfilling part of holiday tradition. I especially love involving kids so they can learn the idea of thinking of others at this time of year. Showing our kids how to prepare an item for donation teaches them how to care for others, but it also shows them to consider how their belongings can be useful beyond their own toy box. The act of cleaning up a gently used truck or putting new batteries into a remote control car to donate demonstrates to kids that our items are valuable to others--and that condition matters. This donation ritual is also an important purge ritual before the influx of contents that are about to enter our homes. 
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