A little secret I haven’t mentioned here on the blog is that we are hiring out help this time around. Which means a few nights a week, we will be welcoming a stranger into our home. She will help with the baby while Kase and I sleep. I’m still pinching myself over that one. Kase and I agree that hiring a night nurse is cheaper than divorce. Or so we assume. That is generally how we come about to most major financial decisions, by the way: Is it cheaper than divorce? If so, we tend to go for it. Not sure Suze Orman would agree with this strategy, but it’s working for us.
But the point is: This (highly qualified and welcome) stranger will have access to our home. To our bathroom. To our laundry. To our kitchen. To the nursery. So in my nesting frenzy this weekend, I walked around the house like a stranger and tried to figure out what needed organizing. I asked myself questions like, “Where would I find this?” “Where would I look for this?” And then (30 minutes later, after a much needed break) I walked around again as my lazy self and said, “self, how can you avoid going upstairs again?” But that has nothing to do with the actual organizing aspect of this post, just illustrating I was tired.
Another little no so secret I have? An addiction to trays. My motto should be “Put a tray on it.” Or rather “Put it in a tray.” Seriously. Trays. Everywhere. Mostly from Target or HomeGoods. Cheap, in other words. Cheap and holding all my crap. But freeing up usable space. And making it pretty to look at, which is just as important in my opinion.
Looking to increase all those usable spaces and get things organized for strangers as well, I tackled our laundry/bathroom situation on Sunday.
I’ve already talked about the bathroom reorg, especially in regards to post partum recovery. In the laundry area, I had already set up a little laundry essentials tray.
I just used some glass jars to corral all our detergent pods and then grabbed a little dish to use for emptying pockets of change and other crap. I then washed all the last of the laundry I had been too lazy to tackle, which gave me the tops of my washer/dryer back. And also the top of the table next to them for folded clothes, which, ahem, was its intended purpose. In the little wire caddy, I leave all our folded socks. I find it’s easier if I just leave them there we can just grab and go. Do you do that? I feel like we’re always ready to dash out the door and yet, never wearing our socks or shoes. Seriously, I’ve left the house in my slippers before. Eh, whatever. Anyway, now the laundry room is ready. We’ve been told the nurse will most likely do laundry through the night as needed. I learned last time around that people like to offer to do laundry after you have a baby. Let them. It’s awesome.
In that vein, expecting that we will also have visitors of the non-paid variety, I tackled the some other common areas.
An area we have set up that worked well when welcoming visitors over the holidays was our coffee station in the pantry. This may seem random, but as any new or veteran parent knows, coffee is very important. At least that’s what I hear. I don’t drink the stuff: I’m a Coke gal myself. COLA. But Kase does drink the stuff. Well, he drinks the fancy drinks- lattes. So as one of his Christmas gifts, I gave him the new Starbucks coffee maker thingy. Now he can make his fancy coffee drink and stuff. It’s way easy. Plus, now he has no excuse to leave the house. We like it.
Anyway, before our guests came, I just rounded all the coffee stuff onto a tray so I wasn’t constantly running to the kitchen for sugar, spoons, mugs, etc. I’m a good hostess in that I hate hostessing, so I try to head off any annoying requests before hand that will require me to leave my perch on the sofa. 😉 In addition to what’s on the tray, I keep all the “pods” for the machine above in the cabinets within easy reach and viewing. This whole set up sits right next to our pantry sink, so water is readily accessible if you need to clean anything up. The only thing I wish I had done differently was print out instructions for making the coffee. Live, learn.
If we end up using formula again, I’ll probably whip up another tray with all the necessities you need to grab at a moment’s notice and keep it near this area. Formula tends to get everywhere and is a pain to clean up, so having it on a tray is a big help. Never mind the bottle washing station. But I decided that’s for another day.