You cannot expect to get your home completely organized over night, even though that would be wonderful.
Plus, even if a whole crew came in and organized everything right now, like they do on some of those television shows, you most likely don't have the habits in place to maintain that organization yet. Trust me, maintaining the organization you put in place can be just as much of a challenge as getting there in the first place, so those skills and discipline are very much needed! Each Monday I will put up a new challenge on the site that we will all work on during the week (including me -- I'm doing the challenge right along with you).
However, I know that it can be hard to remember to check something on the web each week, so I am also going to send out the challenge each week as part of the free email updates and newsletter for the site. For 2016 I've rearranged the order of many of the challenges, combined a few, and added a new one. I've created this one page printable below to show you at a glance exactly what we'll be doing during the challenge each week, and when you open it as a PDF on your computer the links to each week are clickable, meaning you can read that week's challenge all from this document! I want people to participate in this challenge, and to be able to show off what they've accomplished since it feels so good when you get something positive done in your home!
If you do even one of the challenges, whether while it is running that week or anytime you get around to it, and want to show off your accomplishments I would be happy to publish your before and after pictures, or story about what you did here on the site. In addition, if you have your own blog and share your accomplishments there instead you can send me a link to your blog post and I will link to it from the "Hall Of Fame" if you allow me to use a picture and share a brief synopsis, plus add a link to the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge from your blog post.
Share Your Comments, Tips & IdeasI would love to hear from you, sharing your thoughts, questions, or ideas about this topic, so leave me a comment below.
I like the idea of using the pencil box to store q’s that you have to give away or plan to use. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. I bought one of these last year for my hall closet to organize shoes, umbrellas, scarves and hats, and I love that it only takes up half of the closet space, but can fit so much stuff! I’ve looked high and low, explored the web, and have had lots of fun compiling and creating lists of stuff that I want to learn more about and share with you! 10 Helpful Tips That Will Make You A Better DriverWhether you like to drive or not, chances are, it's a big part of your day. Welcome to my home away from home, where we'll get organized, learn to live green, and many other things!
This week’s challenge is to organize recipes and cookbooks in your home so they are easy to find, and serve their intended purpose of helping you cook food in your kitchen. I know this challenge may seem overwhelming to some participants, and to others it will seem like a breeze. Whether this week’s task takes a little or a lot of time for you though, the important goal for this week is to get a good recipe organizing system in place, and begin the process of organization.
When someone needs to consider the issue of how to organize recipes, it is generally because they have a lot of them to deal with. Aspirational: Wanting to try new things, to improve or expand your cooking skills, find an even better recipe for something you already make, etc. To get the most functional use out of your recipes and create an organization system that works, you’ve got to think about what category every recipe and cookbook fit into. However, having a heart to heart talk with yourself about which one it is can really help you with the next step in the process, decluttering and finding the right home in your home for each category of recipes.
This next category of recipes, such as those ancient and revered old family recipe cards with your grandmother’s handwriting on them, should actually not be in the kitchen at all. Instead, make time to place these items in a scrapbook or album, or otherwise have them available for everyone to enjoy and reminisce about in a more appropriate room in the house. Further, if you actually still use one or more of these recipes make a photocopy of the page or otherwise transfer a copy of the recipe into the stack of practical recipes mentioned above, so you don’t have to worry about ruining or harming the original while cooking. This is where it gets tough in the decluttering process of the Organize Recipes Challenge, in my opinion. This category is tricky, because there are legitimate reasons to save some untried recipes. Those negative feelings are something we want to get rid of, and to do so it can be as easy and freeing as throwing recipes in the trash.
Of course, if these fantasy recipes are causing you guilt, because you’ll never make them, just toss them. The third step in the Organize Recipes and Cookbooks Challenge is to create an organizing system for your untried recipes (which has been seriously decluttered already in step 2 above). Then, when you find something you want to try, such as in a magazine, or a recipe from a friend, just throw it into the right folder and you’re done dealing with it. Then, when you get the urge to try a new breakfast recipe, for example, you just go to that file, choose one and cook. Therefore, make a habit of dating any recipes you place into your untried recipes organizational system.
In addition, if you’ve got lots of recipes you want to try you’ve got to actually start making them! Most of the time you’ll reference your tried and true recipes, not your untried recipes. Once you really are sure you like a recipe, this is the time to put them into a uniform system to keep the recipes all together. You make the choice of what recipe organization system is right for you (all of them can work, depending on your personality and goals for the system). Whatever method you use to organize recipes, it is best to categorize them so you can find what you want, quickly and easily.
During this Organize Recipes Challenge choose what organizing system you’ll use for your recipes, and set up the categories and gather your supplies. If you’ve really got 200 tried and true recipes be realistic about how long it will take to put them into your uniform system to keep them organized. However, kitchens, as I mentioned before, are actually not a great place for books and paper because of high heat, humidity and messy accidents.

It will make room in your kitchen for activities that must take place in there, and keep your books in better condition to boot. Above, in step 4 I told you to create a storage and organizing system for your tried and true recipes, but I didn’t give you much guidance on which system to choose.
If you’re concerned about spilling something on your electronics, perhaps paper is still a better choice for you. In addition, having to unfile and file back recipes each time you cook can be a pain, if you use a paper system and aren’t consistent about returning things to their proper place.
If you want to organize recipes electronically as part of the Organize Recipes Challenge there are many software applications and apps you can choose from.
First, if you find most of your recipes online, through blogs then you can simply add them to some Pinterest boards, like I mentioned above, to organize recipes. Plan To Eat: An online meal planner resource you can use to handle all the portions of planning your meals, from recipe organization, creating your grocery shopping list, and, of course, planning your menu for the week. ZipList – a free app for both Apple and Android devices, which helps with both recipes and your grocery list. If you like to pull out lots of recipes from several types of sources, and want to stick with paper, a recipe binder is most likely the best method for you to organize recipes. You can purchase a recipe binder with premade categories (such as the one below), or make your own easily with a simple three ring binder, sheet protectors and some divider tabs (also below). Once you’ve got the cards created you can place them in a recipe box, holder, or even in a binder. Sign up today to keep yourself informed of recipes that I will be trying, eco-friendly tips, and to know in advance about product giveaways! The Extra Wide 52" Storage Case is the ideal solution for safely storing and transporting large items.
Below I've gathered lots of Lego storage ideas and solutions from the real world, ranging from those for little kids to avid adult collectors. Lorie says:If your child loves Legos, like my son, here is a great way to wrangle up all the pieces and keep them organized.
This was a cardboard LUVS box that I covered in fabric I had given to me.It's now our Lego bin. Some links on this page are affiliate links, meaning that if you purchase a product through them I receive a small commission which helps me provide this information to you for free, plus support my family. We have tons of Legos from Star Wars kits, most of the instructions, and a bunch of storage solutions. Our grandson loves Legos and when he was younger and went on trips with us, we bought something called Lay-n-Go (affiliate link) to take his Legos with us on the trips.
It just won't realistically happen for most of us because we have too many areas in our homes that we need to address.
Plus, your life and your home will run more smoothly, plus you'll have gained the knowledge, skills, habits and routines necessary to actually keep it that way! If you want these free emails to come to your home, along with additional organizational tips and hints, sign up below. Just for this purpose I've created a "Creative Storage Solutions And Home Organization Hall Of Fame." I'll also be sharing my own progress, week by week, in this section of the site too so you can track my progress (or see my stumbling blocks) toward my own organized home. Join over 200,000 others and get tips, articles and organizing challenges sent directly to your inbox to help you get your house in order. Being a couponer, Im always in need of storage items and I put them to use right aways Check out the video below. However, please know it will be a continuous process, as you cook new recipes and add to your repertoire.
Instead, the goal is to create a functional, working system for your recipes, without worrying about the beauty of it. The Organize Recipes and Cookbooks Challenge is part of the 52 Week Organization Home Challenge. I believe it is toughest to distinguish between the aspirational and fantasy categories listed above. Instead, these recipes should be readily accessible in your kitchen for you to reference as needed.
That is because they aren’t for practical use typically, but instead are to preserve memories and family history. It can get hot and humid in there, and things in kitchens are prone to getting splattered and spilled on, and even kind of greasy. First you’ve got to decide if a recipe is something you really are going to try to make in the future, or not. For example, these can include learning new cooking skills or techniques, adding to your repertoire of dishes to keep things interesting with your meals, or eating something more healthy or in line with a family member’s new dietary restrictions, etc.
Remember, if you really want to try it later it is most likely on the Internet already, so you’ll be able to find it again when you want it! Perhaps your hobby is scrapbooking cool pictures of food, and you engage in this hobby regularly.
If that is the case although these are technically recipes, they have no business in your kitchen getting mixed in with recipes you may one day cook.
Just create a board and pin all those beautiful pictures, and no clutter gets in your house!
Therefore, don’t put a lot of time into whatever organizational system you create for these, including not making it complicated to add new recipes when you want.
Make it a priority by planning on one new recipe per week, for example, when doing your meal planning (which we’ll talk about in more detail in Week # 8 of the Challenge). Since the most important recipes to organize are the ones you use more frequently, you should spend more time and energy organizing recipes you know you like to use.
This could utilize a recipe binder, recipe cards, or adding them to a software program, for example.
I would suggest getting things set up this week, and then adding a couple new recipes to the system each week while doing your meal planning, so you don’t feel overwhelmed trying to do it all at once.

The ones that do are the ones you use on a regular basis (typically at least weekly, if not more often). However, inputting recipes into a computer can be tedious, and you’ve got to be able to access your computer (or iPad) while cooking for an electronic organizing system to be practical for you. Therefore, consider how you’ll access the recipes in your organization system when deciding which to use, to make sure it fits your personality.
Further, you can view these recipes, with instructions and photos, directly on your iPad or Kindle Fire, for example, while cooking, without ever printing the recipe out. The boxes and holders are similar to index card holders, and you file the cards behind each of the major categories. I'm mom to two awesome little boys, a runner, DIY-er, crafter, paraprofessional, eco-friendly and organizational nut. Manufactured from Polypropylene, this storage case features convoluted foam padding, plastic tension latches and an integrated handle.
These pictures are from Mike, and as you can see he's got a whole room of his house devoted to his hobby.Wow! At least they aren't on the floor killing your feet in the middle of the night when you step on one this way!Are You Inspired To Get Organized Now?If what you've seen inspires you I'd love it if you joined me in the site's 52 Week Organized Home Challenge. My integrity and your satisfaction are very important to me so I only recommend products I would purchase myself, and that I believe would benefit you.
I don't try to organize them, but I do put a sheet or thin blanket in the box first before putting the Legos in and then they just take the sheet out with all the Legos in it and spread it out so that it is easy cleanup after.
They are currently in some pretty large storage bins in the attic, just waiting for my son to have kids! I don't want to spend the time or have the patience to implement any of these super organized by color and cross organized by size ideas!
Each week we focus on a different challenge area in our homes and make steady forward progress. My husband has to put his in the larger center consoles, or as he prefers, piled up on the floor in the entryway. If you really never will try it, but it is completely awesome then see my suggestions below for the fantasy recipe category. Instead, these recipes are part of a hobby or craft unrelated to actually cooking, and should be placed elsewhere in your home. If you do like it, however, then take the time to add it to your tried and true recipe organization system (discussed below), such as filling out a recipe card, adding it to the software program, or putting it in the appropriate binder. The point is not to create a lot of busy work for yourself copying recipes onto pretty little cards, or typing into a software program for no good reason. Here is a brief run down of some of the major ones to consider, so you can choose the one right for you to use in the Organize Recipes Challenge. Therefore, I suggest using sheet protectors or something similar with whatever method you choose so spills don’t ruin or make illegible any paper recipes you own. If you’ve got irregularly sized recipes just staple or tape the recipe to a normal sized sheet of paper to make it easier to add to the sheet protectors. If you choose a binder, they typically have special plastic sleeves designed to hold the cards and allow you to flip to the one you’re interested in. This is where I try to share helpful info with all of you, as well as a place that I debrief and share what's going on in my life. The Age Of The People Playing With Legos Is Important To ConsiderAlong with the size of the collection you've got, another thing to consider when organizing and storing your Legos is the age(s) of the people playing with them.Let's face it, kids will be kids.
This is both an extensive and organized collection!He uses lots of multi drawer storage cabinets for all his bricks, so that he can find what he wants from all his choices.Here are some from Amazon.
It takes a lot of work to get this organized!Really think about how deep you want the drawers to be before you buy something. As the name suggests over the course of the year we work on one room or type of item at a time, and slowly get our homes decluttered and organized.Organizing these small toys is part of the Organize Toys Challenge.Have you tackled organizing your or your child's Lego bricks and want to show off what you've done? The other advantages are that it is really wide so his little pieces don't "miss" the opening when he has to put them away quickly, and it's big enough to hold the Lego floor pieces, those big blue or green sheets to stick the other pieces to. I think my son would love to make the models again but just looking at a jumble of pieces turns him off.He's been sorting this summer, now anyone have a good idea for getting the kits back together? We created a slotted shelf (repurposed wood palettes) in which rimmed jelly roll pans could slide into the slots between boards. And I actually do appreciate the knowledge, but I also find I try not to sweat the small stuff. I can see how this would also be useful in the kids’ bedroom closets for toys and stuffed animals. I think we have an awesome little community, and hope that you will come back and join us again! In fact, I oftentimes am able to negotiate a lower rate (or bonuses) not available elsewhere. My son can use them for play (fewer pieces lost in carpet), pile projects or spare Legos on them and just slide them back into their slots. I'll be more careful in the future, but I'm not wasting time worrying about past mistakes either. Plus, when you order through my link, it helps me to continue to offer you lots of free stuff. I know what you mean about those tables being so darn expensive!Great idea.For smaller kids this low height would be good.
I found items similar to what you've shown above on Amazon if you want to make your own table this way.

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