Friday, January 28, 2011

The Family Closet: 8 Weeks Later

(Note the crib on the far right and the storage bin on the far left of the picture.)

So far, so good!  I have to say that I love, love, love the family closet!

8 weeks later it is still organized and I've worked out most of the kinks.  One of my biggest challenges was processing all the laundry after half the fam returned from Ireland.  I was concerned that so much laundry would expose some serious flaws in the functioning of the FC.  But I'm happy to say that I jumped over that hurdle without difficulty.

Some things that have needed fine tuning?

  • The littlest guy goes to bed before any of the other children.  The FC is housed in his room.  This means that I have to let the other kids know that I'm putting him to bed so that they can get their jammies out of his room before he goes to sleep.  Oops . . . I am not good at this!  So Plan B is for me to select a pair of pjs for each kid as I'm putting him to bed.  Oops . . . well I am slowly getting better at this.  We still have another year or more of him sleeping in that room so hopefully we'll all get better at managing the pj thing.
  • The littlest guy also naps.  A lot.  Which means that I can't put clothes away when he's sleeping.  (Which was when I used to spend time on laundry.)  So I have had to rearrange my laundry rhythms but once I got in the groove this was no longer an issue.  
  • I need to slowly replace the disposable pans that I am using as bins.  They are fine but they won't still be intact a year from now so when I see a sale on bins I will start replacing them a few at a time. 
There have also been some unexpected benefits:
  • Packing for trips is so much easier because everything is in one place!  Each kid can pretty much pack his/her own suitcase because they can see everything they own and can easily access their clothing.  In addition, we can all be in the FC at the same time so I can quickly oversee the packing and help those who might need to be reminded to pack clean underwear.
  • Wardrobe Management is so much easier because I can quickly move clothing that is too small to the top shelf (or right into a box for the Salvation Army) and since I'm storing the clothing that is too big in storage bins, I can just grab a bin and quickly "shop" for clothes that might fit.  (Prior to this I'd have to go to the basement, find the right bin and then bring it upstairs, sort through it and then take it back to the basement.  Times FIVE.  I cannot tell you how much time this saves me to have the too big clothing right in the FC!)
Two thumbs-up for the Family Closet!

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