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Old 06-10-2002, 10:23 AM
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Craft1 Craft1 is offline
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Posts: 20
Organizing Your Entire Home! (From 'Introduce Yourself Post')


Organizing...it might take several weeks to get everything organized, but the time it will save you in the long run...hunting things down...it's a real life saver.

For The Frugal Mom - Not Using Plastic Containers:

For Larger Storage - The boxes that hold reams of computer/copy paper is ideal. They all have lids and are the same size as the filing boxes you can purchase. Generally they
even have the spaces to carry them with. And if you want them to match your decor...cover with self-stick shelf paper and if that gets too expensive (sometimes you can find it at the '$' store in your area which is perfect, or discontinued patterns cheap at the retail stores)...or you can cover with the self-adhesive wall paper (which can be very cheap $2.00 a double roll at the wallpaper stores in discontinued patterns, which covers alot). If using the wallpaper...after wetting, let drain to get most of excess water off and once you have applied it, allow to dry over night before using in order to keep it's shape.). Then label the outside and stack for easy storage. These computer/copy paper
boxes are free at most area Mailing stores (they use alot of copy paper), or at local computer supply or office supply stores for the asking. If one is not near you...check with neighbors to see if their offices have some they throw away on a daily basis.

For Smaller Storage - Use empty shoe boxes and cover as you do with the larger ones and label.

But any type of cardboard container can work...as long as it has a lid it can be converted into frugal containers for organizing.
And if you purchase several plastic containers each week for several dollars...you'll have everything converted over before you know it without too much coming from your budget at one time.
Some containers can even be found at garage/yard sales for a dime or quarter...even if they look really nasty...just bring them home and throw them in a tub of hot water, soap and clorox...like new again.


Just Some Organizing Ideas I Do:

Kitchen:

(When everything is scattered and falling off shelves
these work great. All containers are thoroughly washed
and dried before storage, then labeled.)

Use the shoe box size for:
1. Storing muffin/bread mixes.They lay sideways perfectly.
2. Gravy mixes/sauce mixes. They also lay perfect side-
ways. I alphabetize them for quick access and
reference when making grocery lists.
3. Kool-Aids/drink mix packages. They also lay sideways.
4. Jello - Works great and then they don't fall everywhere.
5. Instant Packages of Oatmeal/Grits
6. Cookie cutters - I have alot...so separate by holiday
and regular...but for just a few...they are always
at your fingertips in one place.
7. Outdoor Barbeque - I store my turner, brush, fork and
the thin spray bottle in one. That way they don't
clutter my kitchen drawers...and I don't have to
go under the cabinet and through drawers each
time to find everything for the barbecue...just grab
the plastic box from the closet/pantry.
8. Plastic forks/spoons/knives and utensils - you never
know where to put the extra ones you get with
fast foods, or the ones you didn't use at your last
party...store in the container and always handy. I
first separate mine into the ziploc bags...so if I just
need spoons, can grab a bag from the container.
9. Condiments - You also never know what to do with
the extra condiments they put in your fast food bag
and hate to throw them out...yet they are terribly
hard to store. Separate by type first into baggies,
place in container and store easily on your bottom
shelf of the fridge.
10. Small appliances - These also work great for small
appliances with extra parts. Food slicer, Mixer with
extra attachments, Salad Shooter, Cookie Press. etc.
All the parts store together and stackable.

Use the oblong plastic Glad type (they are air tight ...ones
you get at the grocery store. (I purchase large
quantities of items on sale and can't put all of a bag or
container in my canisters/glass jars...so remainder is
placed in these for easier storage and stackability):
1. Flour- you can't stack these bags easily.
2. Sugar - same with sugar
3. Tea Bags
4. Coffee
5. Pop-Tarts - If you purchase alot of them like I do (my
grandbabies love them), if you try to stack the boxes
they fall over if you touch them. If you lay them
sideways in the container, four boxes will store in one
container.
6. Grits/Oatmeal (Not instant) - Works great and I store
a scoop for measuring. (If you can't remember the
directions...you can either cut from the box/container
or type and print off computer...then tape to the
bottom of container.
7. Bisquick/Cake Flour/Reg. Flours/Cornmeal/Powdered
Sugar/Brown Sugar/Cornstarch/Rice/Instant Potatos -
They all work great in these. Same process as with
(Grits/Oatmeal).
8. Snacks - Cheetos/Fritos/Crackers (Especially the
large bag of animal crackers for the little ones...the
bag always rips).

I use these for everything except the bottles and can items. The best rule of thumb is...use the plastic shoe type (they seal but are not air tight) for pre-packaged items...like the mixes, etc. and the Glad type (air tight) for the un-packaged items. I've found everything stays fresher, longer using them. Bags tend to get air in them even when utilizing the clips and folding over...especially in Florida (humidity is so high) and get soggy.

Utility Room:

Use the shoe type or larger (according to quanity of supply):

1. Batteries (all sizes - separated with baggies)
2. Light bulbs (including replacement night lights &
Christmas tree bulbs...you'll always know where
they are)
3. Vaccuum bags/Fresheners
4. Plastic gloves
5. Gardening tools - handheld rake, hoe, fertilizer, gloves
knee pads (all in one place for quick access)
6. Candles (they are just the right length)
7. Emergency kit - I put several candles, Emergency
phone listing, Child Proof Lighter, Battery operated
radio, Bee sting vile, Smelling salts, Bandages/band-
aids, ointments, rubber bands, pen & paper for 911
Instructions,r Adult and Child CPR/First Aid Guide, and
anything else you might individually use for your
personal emergencies. This works great, especially
for moms with small children...they don't have to
think where something might be for an emergency.
Everyone in the house (and babysitters) are made
aware of the location. This way everything is at your
fingertips before panic sets in.
8. Potting soil, sand, small pebbles - The small bags fit
perfectly in the small sweater type containers.
They are easy to carry and stackable...where the reg.
bags don't fit anywhere. I leave a scoop in each for
easy usage.
9. Hand Tools - If you're a single mom or your husband
doesn't have a tool box or storage. These work
great for storing hammer, screwdrivers or
pliers. However, if you do have a special area for
tools...the hard plastic holder that hooks to the wall
and has various size holes in it works great. You can
slip each tool in one of the holes for easy access and
just the right size.
10. Car Cleaning - Use the larger sweater type
containers and place the car wax, leather cleaner, old
(clean) rags, small glass cleaner, small detergent
bottle and paper towels. When you get ready to
wash the car...grab the container...no hunting what
you need.
11. Screws/Nails/Bolts, etc. - The embroidery floss boxes
work great for these if you do not have a large amt.
The dividers can be arranged for the various sizes
and will keep them sorted.

Well, almost out of length for this post...will continue on next one.

Last edited by Craft1; 06-11-2002 at 04:58 AM.
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