Our Family Command Center
I am so, so, so excited for this post today! This “project reveal” has been a long time in the making…in fact, I just finished the last little craft for this space this week so that I could (finally) snap some photos and get it up for you all to see!
On a few occasions, I’ve mentioned that one of our biggest organizational challenges as a family is mail, paperwork, keys, wallets, water bottles, and other day-to-day things that tend to lay around, pile up, and ultimately, get lost. Clutter all over the kitchen table drives me batty, and a mail basket in our family always turn into a catch all (also known as a black hole).
As we were moving into our new home, I was DETERMINED to find a space to serve as mission control for our family. A drop zone for bags and keys and mail, but also a place to organize all the necessary resources for day-to-day life. Since we enter and exit our house through a side door, and this little nook (right inside the door) would have otherwise gone un-used, it seemed like the perfect space for our new family command center.
There are so many fun goodies here to show you…
When figuring out what all was going to be in this space, the first priority was mail. We had to find a way to organize mail as it came in the house. If we don’t sort (and throw away) mail as it comes in, we get totally backed up. This 5-pocket metal wall-mounted file was the perfect solution!
Each “bin” was given a specific label: one for myself and one for my husband (so when we find papers laying around the house that belong to the other, we have a place to put them!). We then made three other categories: one for “action” items (those that need to be dealt with in the near future); “file” items (things things that need to make their way into our filing cabinets); and “shred” items (those with personal information that are better shredded than just thrown away). This filing system has worked wonders for keeping track of important papers and keeping mail from piling up on counters!
Another goal for this space was to somehow organize all the various To-Dos for each family member and for around the house (including both chores and projects). I found this sticky note concept on Pinterest and knew it would be the perfect solution for us! I need to write things down, but I also need them constantly visible (so I don’t forget) and accessible (so it’s easy to add things as necessary).
I particularly love the “project’ and “blog” columns for several reasons. One, the sticky notes help me stay focused on the “current” projects, as well as prioritize and organize what’s coming next. Then, once a project is done, I just move the sticky note over to the “blog” column. Once the post goes up on the blog, I just throw the sticky away. It really helps me keep track of what projects are next, and what is still yet to be posted on the blog!
Another big clutter/paper culprit in our house: receipts and coupons. I couldn’t take them stuck to the refrigerator any longer, so this little desk organizer gives me a place to put both as soon as they come in the house. Now, when we need a receipt or are heading out shopping, we know exactly where everything is!
This left side of the command center works really hard for us…
But so does the right side!
The other big feature of this command center is a magnetized board (this is the same size and shape as the magnet board I used for Henry’s play station!). Not everything can/should be filed away, and we needed a way to keep some papers and schedules easily accessible. A 20″ square piece of sheet metal solved our dilemma…I love the industrial look of the sheet metal and enjoy the change from a plain ol’ cork board.
The magnetized board has some cute printable that I customized for our family:
- What Should We Do Today? – A list of local activities for days when Henry and I just can’t find anything to do!
- Our Clean Routine – Our daily, weekly, and monthly cleaning schedule
- One-week calendar – a laminated 7-day calendar that we fill in each week with appointments and outings.
There’s a few other little elements of this command center that really make it fun and functional for us!
First up, this awesome cubby shelf. We bought this mudroom shelf from Amazon. Instead of hanging it high on the wall, we mounted it slightly above counter height so that we could use the top surface. I then hunted around for the perfect baskets to fit in the cubbies. It turned out that these baskets (from Target) were a perfect fit. I embellished each one with a fabric number to keep them straight. Originally, we thought each family member would get a cubby…but they have evolved differently. Cubby 1 is currently empty; cubby 2 holds sunscreen bug spray, etc; and cubby 3 holds Greg’s school books and papers. Labeling with numbers instead of letters means that we can easily change up what goes inside!
I also made some super cute, super simple, and super cheep artwork for the space. A vinyl decal, mini bunting, and these cute typography plaques help make the space cheerful and fun! (A full tutorial is coming soon!)
This little nook was so much fun to work on, and I am super excited to report that it’s been incredibly functional for us. We were in desperate need of a drop zone, as well as some resources for organizing our household paperwork…and this nook fits the bill just right!
And because it’s fun to see how a blank wall can be transformed…here’s a few quick before and after shots!
The view coming in the door!
Pheeeeeew! That was a doosy of a post. There’s so much here, so you better believe I have some follow-up posts and tutorials to show you how I pulled this all together. Keep your eyes out next week for a few tutorials as well as a full resource list!
Have a great weekend!!!!
P.S. You can now read all the follow-on detailed posts to this project HERE!!!