Thursday, January 30, 2014

More Organized: Kids' Bookshelf

Yeah, this bookshelf. It's been an accident waiting to happen for a couple of years now. Good thing the beds were there to support it! Oh, but it's stressed me out, especially since I'm always thinking about earthquakes. Well, we finally got to tackle it!

Aiden to the rescue (again)!

He unloaded all the books into Lyndsay's room and the hallway.

Took the bookcase apart and deposited the pieces into the trash. (YAY!!)

Conor got to see a lot of books he didn't know we had, or books he'd forgotten about.

Then Aiden set to work building the new bookcase, that I bought at IKEA (when I bought the shelf unit for the downstairs closet.)

And then I got the fun job of putting all the books back on. I love that job. For the first time in nearly 20 years, I put the boardbooks on the top shelf. Way too many memories, so there was no way I was getting rid of them, but they don't really get used these days. I have books, though, that Lyndsay and Dylan got for their first birthdays, or books that Dylan chewed, or books we read every single night to Conor. I cherish those books!

Not all of the books fit on this new bookcase, even though it's quite a bit bigger. That's because on the old bookcase, the first three shelves were stacked two layers deep. I want to get shorter bookcase units for the little alcove in our upstairs hallway. I have two more bookcases of children's books downstairs that I want to move up. Also, we're slowly making improvements to the room that used to be Adam's office, and Aiden will move in there to have his own room. When that happens, some of these books will move in there with him, which will free up some space.

I have so many of these books memorized. I've read them to each of my babies, over and over again. As we put the books on the shelves, we would begin quoting from them. Quite funny to see how much the kids have memorized too! ("Sheep on a jeep on a hill that's steep. Uh-oh! The jeep won't go!")

We love our books! Books make a house a home. And we're never lonely in a home with books!

As a sidenote, Conor showed me the castle he has been building on Minecraft. As he was giving me a tour of the inside, I got a thrill seeing that he had put bookcases of books in every room! Love that!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

More Organized: The Game Closet

One of my goals this year is to get more organized. I'm a pretty organized person, but I haven't had the money to properly keep certain areas the way I really want them. So, I plan to tackle those areas one by one this year. This game closet has been plaguing my mind for years. Since we moved in, actually. The house I lived in in Utah had SO much storage. I had an entire walk-in closet for games and it was wonderful. We play a lot of games, and back when I homeschooled, I had many more than I do now. When we moved to this house in California (8 1/2 years ago) there was no such storage space. And since the shelves in my old house were built in, I had no shelving (nor money to buy any) for the games. I made do with cardboard boxes, but I was aware of how tacky that was. And it made playing the games on the bottom tricky. But today I had to make a trip to IKEA to get some room-darkening blinds (I've begun the night shift! A post on that later.) and figured while I was there I'd get a shelf unit for the games and a new bookshelf for the boys' room. The fewer trips to IKEA the better.

You can see that this closet is just a disaster. I've donated so many games to pare down what we had, but still, what an eye-sore. Also, the space is so odd, as the closet goes way back in on that right side, making anything you put back there hard to get out. I also keep our emergency supplies/72 hour kits in here, and I still need to figure out a better system for those, but for now, I wanted to get the games tackled.

Conor and I made the IKEA trip. Aiden was riding dirt bikes with his friend. It wasn't until he got home that we broke the news to him that he needed to unload the boxes from the car and start building. But he was happy to do it. He's so great to have around!

Conor got to work unloading the closet.

Ah! So much better!

See that Busytown game? That was a Santa gift this year for Conor. Wish I'd found it earlier. I have a post about that game. Highly recommend it!

In the two drawers at the bottom, I put preschool games and card games in one, and weather-related accessories (gloves, hats, scarves, umbrellas) in the other.

I moved the 72 hour kit backpacks to that far inside space and this bucket contains emergency food and equipment. The red and white bag is the car trip/Conference bag, full of tiny games and maze books, etc. This side of the closet could still use some work, but for now, it will do.

It's so much better and more useful now! And of course, the boys are excited to play more games now that they're more accessible.

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Makings of a Dylan Boy

Warning: Picture overload. 

Today is Dylan Todd's 18th birthday. I can't even believe another one is grown. Sometimes I thought he would be the death of me, but looking back, I think that in many ways he's been the birth of me. He's taught me so much, and I'm grateful for where we are now as mother and son. I love this boy with my whole heart. Happy birthday, my Dylan!

Oh, my boy. To the moon and back, to infinity and beyond, forever and ever. You're mine.