You guys! I don’t know why it has taken me a year to get a command center set up in our home. Well, actually that is a lie. The reason is that I have been really non-committal on the location of such a thing. However, it has finally happened! Thank goodness! We are the proud owners of a Pretty & Practical Command Center.
This post contains affiliate links for convenience. (Click here to read my full disclosure.)
I kept thinking that a nice and big command center on the wall of the laundry room would be great because it is out of view of the main areas of our home. Plus, the hope was that we would see it every day as we went in and out of that room to do laundry or to go into the garage. I’m here to tell you that our garage is still packed full of junk that we need to either organize or get rid of, so I avoid it like the plague. And the laundry, well, I just hate doing it, so… this command center was relocated to our dining room. Which, by the way, is smack dab in the middle of our home.
Requirements for this space were simple. We needed a calendar to keep track of our family’s busy schedules and a place to sort and store all of our paperwork/mail. Oh, and it needed to be clean and simple. I can totally appreciate command centers with chalkboards, pencil holders, pin boards, artwork, key hooks, and magnet boards. That just not my style though, folks. I like to keep things as uncomplicated as possible.
When I’m trying to put together a gallery wall type scenario, I like to lay all of the pieces out on the floor for visual reference.
This saves me time and I don’t usually end up having to put unneeded holes in the wall. (I know my husband appreciates that!) You can see below that I have the calendar (originally from Hobby Lobby), paper organizer (which we used in our previous home), and vintage clipboard. I added the wood script word “hi” (also from Hobby Lobby) to balance the grouping. Oh, and since I was working around the light switch, I just took it off of the wall to see how everything would fit.
After I was happy with the spacing, I used my trusty Ryobi Laser Level to square things up on the wall. This was a Christmas present from my parents and it has been such a wonderful tool to use! I made my marks and hung up the paper organizer.
For the clipboard and wood script word, I used Command strips. These seemed like the easiest way to hang up these lightweight items. (Bonus: No Extra Holes in the Wall!)
I also loved these metal label holders that I found and decided to add them to the front of the paper sorters. A little super glue later and they stuck like gum to hair. You know you how hard that is to remove!
I’m so excited to get the paper clutter and bills off of our countertops!
Oh, and I wanted to clarify the clipboard. I love clipboards because they can be so multi-functional. No, really! Use it to hang up some fun free art prints (this one is from Magnolia Market Blog.) Or paint it with chalkboard paint and write a list right on it. You can even use the clip to hold extra pens, pencils, or chalk. I plan on eventually printing out our weekly schedule of activities that remain the same from week to week.
It may be a bit late in the post for this, but I should mention that I actually hate the term “command center.” It sounds so militant. However, that is what these little areas where we organize the chaos of our lives are called, so I’m reluctantly embracing it. Doesn’t it look pretty good?
It’s here!!! I’ve had so many requests from friends and readers for the newest version of my annual calendar/planners and I’m here to deliver. Apparently, a lot of you enjoy planning out your life at least a little in advance. (Like me!) And this 2017 calendar and planner are, of course, free for you to download!
Most of the design for this coming year has stayed the same, although there are a few tweaks to the cover. If you can’t read the writing on this small photo of the cover page, it says “Believe in yourself and you will be unstoppable.” A little motivational quote never hurt anyone, right?
Obviously, the calendar is pretty straight forward. I choose to stay with the vertical format and updated all of the dates.
I’m also including my favorite planners in this bundle. The weekly planner is great for jotting down all of the specific activities going on during your week on an hour by hour basis. It’s perfect for meetings, lessons, practices, etc.
This post contains affiliate links. Click here to read my full disclosure.
I love using a bill pay checklist! It makes remembering which bills have been taken care of very easy, especially when we pay so many of our utilities and such online.
I also find that I end up saving money at the grocery store when I plan out all of our meals for the week. I plan everything out on the menu, then can add individual ingredients and items to the shopping list.
If you are looking for a way to get your life more organized in 2017, this is a great way to start! Simply click the link below to download.
I like that this style of calendar is versatile. It can be put inside of a binder or hung straight on a bulletin board. I even added a pretty front cover page to make gifting this freebie a breeze! Wrap the set up with some pretty ribbon or send it off to be printed and bound.
Psst… I’ve been working hard on a new printables gallery with lots of free goodies for you! I’m hoping to have it up and running in the next month, so check back soon!
It has been a little over three months since we closed on The City House and I want to share with you the secrets of how we sold it to the first buyer who walked through (on the first day). Obviously, the title of this post “How We Sold Our Home In One Day” may be a little deceptive. There is a lot more involved in selling a home than just finding a buyer. You must do all of the prep work before listing (we used a realtor), plus getting to closing can take a couple of months or more, depending on negotiations, inspections, loan approvals, etc. However, getting started on the right path can ensure that you get the perfect buyer into your home as soon as possible.
As a former realtor, I think one of the most important parts of finding a buyer quickly is making your home look as appealing as possible before listing. (Picking a reasonable listing price and deciding how willing you are to negotiate will also be very important.) Here are some tricks and tips on how to do it!
This should be apparent, but fixing the big and small problems in the house (i.e. small holes in the wall, doors that don’t latch correctly, lighting problems, landscaping issues) should be one of the first things on your to-do list, once you decide to sell your home. Take care of all of the problems you know of and you won’t have to worry about them showing up on later inspections.
Our kitchen counters were looking pretty bad after a failed DIY attempt. So, we replaced them with an inexpensive, yet, nice looking option.
Buyers will definitely have an opinion about your home before they even walk in. Curb appeal is important since it is the first thing that people see. Make sure to tidy up outside by cleaning walkways, cutting the grass, weeding flower beds. You can even add some potted plants and a seasonal door wreath to pretty things up.
My favorite boxwood wreath hanging on the front door.
Many people don’t realize that cleaning and decluttering are two different things. With decluttering, the point is to remove all of the things that make the rooms look, well, cluttered and busy. Removing mail, tchotchkes, and excess furniture from each room will help the space feel more inviting and open. Decide whether each item you are decluttering should be thrown out, donated, or stored until you move.
We didn’t have a lot of items to purge, but we did move a lot of extra stuff to our Country House and donated quite a few things. If you don’t have space to store items in your home and your budget allows, consider renting a storage unit until you move. You could also ask friends/family if they would mind allowing you to store a few things in their homes until your home is sold.
Our dining table was pretty big for our breakfast nook, so we swapped it out for a smaller one to make the room look a little more spacious.
Again, this should go without saying, but your home should be pretty much spotless. We opted to hire a cleaning company to come in and really deep clean everything. Getting the major cleaning out of the way, saved us so much time and helped us focus on other tasks, like painting the walls.
We were also lucky enough to be able to move our pets to our new Country House before listing. We knew that then they wouldn’t get in the way with showings and it would be one less thing to worry about cleaning up. Pet odors can be a huge turn off for potential buyers! If you must have your pets around during showings, consider crating/kenneling them. Also, make sure their areas (food bowls/litter boxes/etc.) are pristine. Don’t forget to clean rugs and vacuum furniture well to get rid of smells, hair, and dander.
Our kitty Rowan, lounging like he does.
For many people, hiring a home stager is not in the budget when they are trying to sell their house. The good news is that you could do a pretty good job at staging your own home. As I mentioned before, decluttering will really help open rooms up to feel more spacious. A few other ideas to consider would be:
- Room Rearrangements – Move furniture around to be more inviting for conversation, especially in the living/family room. Also, make sure that each room has furniture in it to compliment the exact type of room a buyer may want. If you have 3 bedrooms, but use one as an office or playroom, consider changing it to make it look more like to a bedroom while your home is listed. Also, make sure that large furniture pieces are not in front of windows which may stop natural light from coming in.
- Neutralize – There are a couple of ways to neutralize your home. First, consider painting rooms with bold color choices a more neutral tone (i.e. changing bright yellow to soft greige.) Second, think about storing some personal items, such as family photos, toys, and collections. You don’t have to necessarily rid your home of every last one of these items, but a buyer will be less distracted if a home is neutralized and it will be easier for them to picture themselves living in the space.
Neutral colors and welcoming furniture placement from our living room.
So, those were the major things we did that we believed to helped us sell our home so quickly. Even though I can’t guarantee your home will be sold in one day, I hope that you can use these tips and tricks to get your home sold as quickly as possible! Selling your home can be so nerve-racking. It is even ranked up there as one of the most stressful life events a person can experience. To say that I’m happy to be done with the selling process, would be an understatement. However, I’m glad that we spent a little extra time preparing our home before listing because it certainly paid off! Best of luck to you too!
Click here to see how we prepared for showings!
With both of my kids in school this year, it was finally time to figure out some sort of organizational system for all of our paperwork. Not that we aren’t organized normally. However, with two rugrats bringing home enough paper to equal half of a rain forest worth of trees, we needed something that would keep everything in check. Enter the command center…
This post contains affiliate links for convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure.
Over the years, I have seen some pretty amazing command centers.
These spaces are usually centrally located in the home and contain everything needed to keep the household running smoothly. Stuff like calendars, clocks, chalkboards, bulletin boards, binders, folders, files, menu planners, and the list goes on. I knew that I didn’t have room for all of that business (just a tiny wall in our kitchen). So I had to figure out how to create a simple and functional command center in a small space.
To cover the basics, I ordered all of our main command center pieces from Ikea. (Ikea didn’t compensate us for any of this; we just really liked the price and how the pieces came together.)
Our calendar is something I whipped up and had printed as an engineering print (18″x24″) at our local print shop. I placed it in a large Ribba frame (19 3/4 x 27 1/2) with the mat. We can write all of the important stuff we have coming up on the front of the plexiglass and erase it with ease. Hopefully, this will keep us from forgetting dance or soccer practice and all of the things that we need to be available for.
I’ve included the PDF file for the calendar, in case you would like to print your own. Click the image below to get yours now!
To organize all of our papers and bills, I ordered the Kvissle Wall Magazine Rack. Each of the kids gets one slot for important school papers. The rest are designated for bills, other mail, and etc., which holds blank paper for note taking and a weekly calendar for menu planning.
I placed a cork board (painted with white paint to make stripes) in another smaller Ribba frame so that we can hang up any little bits of fun or info we have until we can file them.
All of the colored dry erase markers are corralled in a small canning jar, along with a few extra pencils, and placed on the counter for easy access.
This little wall in our kitchen has turned out to have a huge impact on our family organization and I am feeling a lot less anxiety with this system in place.
Do you have a family command center? How do you keep organized during the school year? We would love to hear from you. Let us know in the comments below!
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