Thursday, March 12, 2015

Organizing The Kids' Library

Houston, we have a problem. 

Not to worry, it is nothing earth shattering. 

Just an idea that I came up with last month that wasn't quite working as well as I thought it would. After a bit of frustration with books spread out all over the house (in various nooks & crannies, under beds, behind doors, etc.) I decided to turn one of our IKEA shelves in the basement into our designated storage place for kids' books. 

We very creatively named it our "library." ;-)

The problem was that some of the books would slide right behind the shelf because there was a gap between the back of the shelf and where the couch angles in. Perhaps moving it against the wall would solve that problem. However this particular shelf fits great right next to the couch because it is the perfect height for setting drinks and popcorn on movie nights.

Then one afternoon it dawned on me that instead of thinking that my only option was to move the shelf, I could simply switch the books and toy bins that were on the shelves. (Ahhh, totally one of those light bulb moments where I wondered how many more months it would have taken me before I finally thought of that.) 

I got to work switching things around and decided to pull the shelf away from the couch to clean out anything that might have fallen behind there. 

Ya'll, laugh with me here...but for the first five years of married life (pre-kids!) this little organizer's heart used to swear that I would never have random toy pieces hiding under the couches or behind furniture once we had kids roaming the grounds. 

I remember thinking at the time..."how does that even happen?!?" 

Ya'll, it HAPPENS!

One child, two children, ten happens!

Like, "put it all in a pile and find all of the treasures that they didn't even know they were missing," kind of happens!

I grabbed my swiffer duster, broke out the vacuum, switched the items, sorted the bins, stacked the books and stood back to gaze intently.


If it wasn't for the fact that quiet time was about to conclude upstairs I would have totally grabbed a cup of tea and just stared at this little organized haven for a moment longer.

You see, what I am learning as a mom is that the "norm" for my kids' play room is that there are going to be lots of treasures under the couch.

And most definitely the books won't stay like this...

Nor will the toy bins always stay sorted like this...

But you know what?

I am perfectly ok with that. Because having a messy play room means that kids live here, that prayers were answered, and that friends come over and play. And when I focus on that...on being thankful for ALL of that, then the mess doesn't need to be completely gone for me to feel joyful.

Thanksgiving is where it all begins

p.s. A little extra joy does however come now from walking by the "library" and smiling that one problem was solved. No more books falling behind the shelf. :-)

organizing the kids' library


  1. Thank God for the AHA moments! Looks great.

  2. It's those little changes that make the biggest difference! It always feels SO good to have the toys/books cleaned up...even if you know it won't stay that way :)


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