I spent a good amount of time prepping for mom’s visit this past weekend, and specifically logged two hours on Friday night while watching Dog Whisperer (I know, quite a party, huh?) cleaning out our den closet and making space for our guests to hang clothes and leave toiletries, etc.
This closet has pretty much functioned as a storage space for the kids since we moved in, and has worked well as a central location for the them to store and find all the games, books and toys that I’d rather not see cluttering up their room. We were able to squeeze in a tall IKEA bookshelf that was on its last legs, which we laid in horizontally, and that created some cubby spaces for us to separate some of the junk. With the sectional sofa dividing the den, and the closet and small scale kids table & chairs behind it, we created a nice little play area that they use frequently. But along with frequent use came frequent shoving of all the aforementioned games, books and toys into any space they could find in the closet, which resulted in an overflowing pile of mess with no rhyme or reason.
So first I removed all the coats and anything that was piled up on top of the bookcase without a home. What a mess!
I was able to fill up two bags of trash (broken toys, dried up markers, etc) that I quickly threw in the bin out back before the kids could plead their case for any of it, which helped to lighten the load. Then I started to organize and rearrange. Their dollhouse had to find a new spot for now, but hopefully they’ll play with it more if it’s front and center for a few weeks.
And other than their bucket of dolls and doll clothes and a few other small bins of tiny toys (Littlest Pet Shops and Polly Pockets) I was able to clear off the top of the bookcase.
Then I had to find a place to put all the winter coats that had been calling the den closet home so I picked up this $30 garment rack with cover from the Container Store, and the Mr. set it up in the garage. We so rarely need access to these coats anyway, so this would leave the space available for mom during her visit and then just in general give us a less cluttered look when we’re sans guests. I left about a dozen wooden hangers in there for our future guests, as well as towels and an extra blanket..
Once we’re back from our camping trip next Sunday we’ll be able to set up the air mattress with some fresh sheets and pillows and Hotel California will be open for business!