Archive | April, 2011

I’d Like to Thank the Academy…

30 Apr

Yesterday I checked my email and found a message from Heather (Mrs. Decor-ganize Crafts herself) telling me that I should check her blog because she had a surprise for me.  Always up for a good surprise, I made my way over and found the good news:

She had nominated me for this…


I am so honored to have been given such a great award, especially since my little blog baby is a little over 2 months old.  Thank you, Heather, for thinking of me! 
The rules are that I have to share 10 things about myself and then pass this award on to 10 other deserving bloggers.  Here goes…
Ten Things About Me
  1. I am a Christian, saved by God’s grace.
  2. I am terrible in the kitchen.
  3. I have one sibling: a sister.
  4. I’m a military brat (Dad was in the Air Force).
  5. I attended 6 schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade.
  6. I’m scared of snakes, bad weather, and wasps.
  7. I hope to become better acquanited with my sewing machine here in the next few months.
  8. Of all the places in the world, I would like to visit France the most.
  9. Before becoming a SAHM, I was a bank teller.
  10. My favorite foods are anything Italian (pasta, pizza…doesn’t matter.  Could eat it daily!)
Now, here are the blogs that I’m dubbing the most Kreativ (in no particular order):
A Pretty Life in the Suburbs

Simply...This. That. And The Other
The Policastros
Grab a Button
*Goodbye, House! Hello, Home!
abode love: a man\
Gwenny Penny
Nuestra Vida Dulce
The Simple Things

You all never cease to inspire me with your creative crafts, projects, and tips.  I am so happy to pass along this award to each of you.

For everyone else who reads my blog, please know that it was sooo hard to choose just 10 because there are so many fabulous ladies out there who amaze me with their creativity on a daily basis.  If I could have, I would send each and every one of you a blogger award.  But rules are rules and I’m just following instructions.

Again, thank you Heather (from Decor-ganize Crafts) for this honor!

P.S. I may be a little absent in the next few days or so because our computer is giving us trouble.  I’m currently borrowing my in-laws laptop to write this post.  In case you were wondering, yes, I’m having withdrawals.  🙂  Don’t worry though.  In the mean time, I’m working on some fun posts. (Including a possible giveaway, if everything works out!)

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Keeping up with the Taylors

28 Apr
Earlier, I shared a friend’s cute craft corner that she created.  In the spirit of passing out kudos to deserving people I’d like to tell you that if you have an organizing/decorating project that you’re proud of, email them to me at ourtaylormadehome@gmail.com and I’ll happily share them with everyone here.  As much as I like to write informative organizing posts or share my own projects, I also want to make sure that I brag on all of you wonderful people!  So, email me those projects or post them on our Facebook page (see link below).
Now, on to some “housekeeping” business:

If you like this blog, I would encourage you to become a follower so that you can be kept up to date on what’s going on.  If you want to make doubly sure that you don’t miss anything, sign up to “follow by email” and receive updates in your inbox.  You can become a follower and sign up for email by clicking on the appropriate links in the sidebar.

Also, I would love it if you would “LIKE ME” on Facebook.  Click HERE to go to the Facebook page of Taylor Made Home.
Lastly, you can find me on Twitter: @OurTMH31.  This one you’ll have to bear with me because I literally just posted my first tweet a minute ago.  I don’t know if I’m gonna like it, but I’m going to give it an honest effort.
If you follow me here on blogger or on Twitter, or like me on Facebook, let me know and I’ll gladly follow or like you back!

Kudos: A Friend’s Craft Corner

28 Apr

While I was a 3rd and 4th grader (eons ago, it seems), I attended a private Christian school in Montgomery, AL, where I met Hubby.  It was there I  also met a girl named Jamie.  Now, we didn’t hang out a whole bunch back then (not sure why) and we haven’t been around each other in person a whole lot since, but thanks to technology (Facebook and blogging), we’ve been able to keep in touch.

She is married to the love of her life, JP, and they have the CUTEST baby girl you have ever seen.  Together, they share a mix of their lives and home improvement projects on their blog The Policastros, where I’m learning that she and I share similar styles when it comes to home decor.  You’ve got to check it out!

Recently, Jamie wanted to spruce up her craft corner and used this photo from the home of the super organized and talented Jen from IHeart Organizing as inspiration:

Here is Jamie’s version:
Too cute, right?  I absolutely love what she did with it!  For the full story on this project, check out her blog HERE.
Great job, Jamie!  Can’t wait to see what else you tackle in your home because you’ve definitely got some style!

Never Ever Spring Clean Again!

27 Apr

Spring cleaning is a topic that the blog world has been buzzing about over the past month or so.  However, if you’re like me, the whole idea of spending anywhere from a couple of days to a full week in a cleaning frenzy is NOT my idea of a good time.  I like to organize; I never said I like to clean.  I promise, they are two VERY different things!

By the way, did you know that spring cleaning isn’t necessary anymore?  Here’s what the Encyclopedia Britannica Blog had to say:

“In times past, when people kept their houses shut tight against the cold of winter, heated them with coal and oil and wood, and lighted them with candles, the coming of spring signaled a welcome opportunity to make a dingy habitation fresh again. On the first warm, dry day of the season, everybody in the family—that is, everyone in the family who had survived the ravages of the cold season—would pitch in to pull every stick of furniture and scrap of cloth outside. Then, armed with brooms and washrags, one squad of housecleaners would return to the house, sweeping and scrubbing every corner and washing down the walls, while another would air out linens, remove soot and ash from couches and chairs, dust books and paintings, and mend a few items on the run.

Today, the thought of taking a day or weekend to turn our houses upside down seems a near impossibility. Who has the time? Besides, our modern centrally heated and cooled, climate-controlled homes don’t get oily, sooty, or smoky, and our washing machines and vacuum cleaners help keep the dirt from sneaking in.”

That explains why spring cleaning, at least in the traditional sense, isn’t necessary. I’d rather not spend my time wiping, sweeping, and scrubbing my entire house like a mad woman for days in a row.  I’d rather do a little bit throughout the year. 

Yes, it is possible to never have to spring clean ever again.  How?  Glad you asked.

CLICK BELOW TO READ MORE

Step One: Create (or Print Out) a Cleaning/Maintenance List

To make your own cleaning checklist, go through your house room-by-room and write down EVERYTHING that needs to be cleaned, changed, or checked.  (Don’t forget to take a tour outside your home as well.)  Floors need to be swept and mopped or vacuumed.  Air filters need to be changed.  Refrigerators needs to be cleaned and septic tanks need to be treated on a regular basis.  Take note of everything.
Once you have your list, determine how often that item/task needs attention.  You may decide that the kitchen counters need to be cleaned daily while you can get away with cleaning the bathroom counters every week.  You’ll want to choose how often you clean based on your (and your family’s) tolerance level.
The great thing about creating your own cleaning/maintenance schedule is that it’s already customized to meet your needs.  However, if you’re too busy or you’d just rather not deal with it, you can print off a pre-made list and tweak it as you go. 
Before I share a list of cleaning checklists you can print out, let me pause here to say this: in addition to keeping your cleanliness tolerance level in mind, you also want to choose a checklist based on how you like to work.  What I mean by that is if you like to focus on one task at a time, such as dusting all horizontal surfaces at once, versus focusing on one room at a time, then your checklist should reflect that.
Example checklist for someone who likes to work on one task at a time:
  • Monday – Floors: sweep and mop all hard floors and Vacuum all carpet.
  • Tuesday – Windows: dust all blinds/window sills and wipe windows.
  • Wednesday – Dust: wipe down all horizontal surfaces.
  • ETC
Example checklist for the person who likes to clean one room at a time:
  • Monday – Entry/Mudroom
  • Tuesday – Kitchen/Dining Room
  • Wednesday – Living Room and/or Family Room
  • ETC
Keeping tolerance levels and work methods in mind, check out these printable checklists and see if any of them work for you:
  • Microsoft Word has several templates for planners, lists, and schedules you can use.  Some are partially pre-filled to give you a starting point while most of them are blank (they do have designs on them to jazz them up a bit).
  • Real Simple has a ton of cleaning checklists to choose from.  You could print out a cleaning checklist for each room in your home and put them in a binder.  When it’s time to clean, take your binder with you and mark off each task as you complete it.  Don’t forget to put the checklists in sheet protectors and use a dry erase marker.  That way, you can use them over and over.
  • IHeart Organizing has cute spreadsheets and checklists that you can purchase for a small fee.  Jen can do some of the customizing for you or you can purchase and tweak it yourself.
  • Clean Mama also has some cleaning schedules you can purchase for a small fee, as well as packets of forms you can purchase for your home management binder.
  • NaturalesSCENTials has a Cleaning Simplicity Kit that includes 6 printouts. She even shows you how you can frame your checklists and place near your family command center for ease of use:
Cleaning Simplicity Kit Printables - 6 Piece Set includes Daily, Bi-Weekly, Weekly, Monthly and Spring Cleaning
Step Two: Assemble Your Cleaning Kit
Note: I don’t know if you can see that shaker in the above photo, but it has a label on it that reads “baking soda”.  What an easy way to make baking soda easy to use while cleaning!
Once you’ve figured out what needs to be done and when, the next step is to gather your tools.  Does this sound familiar?

You decide it’s finally time to dust all of your horizontal surfaces.  You grab your cleaner and march towards the nearest surface; bound and determined to rid it of any trace of dust.  Raising the cleaner to spray, you realize that you forgot to grab a cloth.  But, wait a minute, where did you put the cloths?  Are they even clean or do they need to be washed first?

You realize that half your cloths are missing and the other half are dirty.  After putting the dirty cloths in the washer, you decide that you are going to sit down and catch up on your favorite television shows while they go through the washing and drying cycles.  Problem is, by the time they are done, you’ve lost all motivation to dust.

I don’t know about you, but I find it extremely frustrating to start tackling a project
and realize that I don’t have the proper tools to complete the job.  However, if we take a few minutes beforehand and gather everything we need, we can eliminate this incovenience; thus becoming more productive.
Everyone has differing opinions on what goes into their cleaning arsenal.  Some prefer to purchase whatever is on sale at their local grocery store, while others insist on cleaners with natural ingredients.  However, what I’d like to share with you is a general list that you can use as the foundation of your kit.  Anything else you add is up to you.
Cleaning Kit Supplies (found via realsimple.com):
  • Microfiber Cloths
  • Toilet Brush
  • Scrub Brush
  • Spray Bottle(s)
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Old Toothbrush
  • Dry Cleaning Sponge
  • Squeegee
  • Broom
  • Sponge Mop
  • Disinfecting Wipes
  • Mild Abrasive
  • Dust Mop
  • Extendable Duster
  • White Vinegar
  • Dishwashing Liquid
  • Vacuum
  • All Purpose Cleaner
  • Baking Soda
  • Supply Caddy
Step Three: Create a Cleaning Playlist
Okay, so this one isn’t a MUST, but it sure is fun.  Create a playlist of your favorite tunes to dance to and then play it while you’re cleaning.  Shake your hips while you vacuum.  Ballroom dance with your mop.  I know it sounds silly but it will make cleaning hardly seem like work and may even encourage your kids to help out (and dance along, of course). 
PLUS, another awesome benefit is added calories burned.  Yes, cleaning IS exercise!  The more you move, the higher your heart rate; thus the more calories you burn.  (Or something like that.  I’m not a fitness expert or anything.)
Step Four: Get to Cleaning!
You’ve already formulated your plan of attack and filled your arsenal.  (Yes, I relate cleaning to going into battle.)  Plus, you’ve created a list of upbeat tunes to help you get the job done.  All of these things are important, but the next step is crucial.  Ready for it?
YOU’VE GOT TO ACTUALLY CLEAN.
We all know that a house doesn’t clean itself (unfortunately).  Therefore, it doesn’t matter how organized your cleaning checklists are or how many cleaning tools you have, and it certainly doesn’t matter how rockin’ your playlist is.  What matters is that you actually get up off the sofa and put cloth to surface, or vacuum to carpet, or… well, you get the idea.
I’m talking primarily to myself here because I know how tough it can be to motivate ourselves enough to actually make any progress, especially if we are terribly behind and need to play catch up.  For example, it takes more determination to tackle a huge pile of dishes in and around the sink versus a couple of dishes that just need to be put in the dishwasher.  Am I right?
I like how the FlyLady puts it: “Housework done incorrectly still blesses your family.”  In other words, you don’t have to be a professional maid in order to get started.  You don’t even have to pick up every single trace of dust or dirt.  The important thing is that you are trying to create a welcoming atmosphere for your family to relax in when the day is done.
Step Five: Reward Yourself!
When you’ve done all of your chores for the day, allow yourself a piece of cake for dessert.  Once you have completed all of your cleaning tasks for the week, reward yourself with a new magazine or book.  Make a list of rewards you’d like to earn and keep track of your progress.
Right now we are potty training Little Man and we use M&M’s to entice him to use the toilet.  Eventually, using the toilet like a big boy will become second nature and he will not need M&M’s anymore.  You see, eventually you’ll be able to wean yourself from the rewards and will begin to tackle your chores because they are second nature, not because you get something out of it.  (However, no one said you HAD to give up them up if you didn’t want to.)  🙂
TO SUM IT ALL UP: You can avoid the annual spring cleaning marathon by tackling your cleaning tasks throughout the year.  Of course, you’ll probably want to spruce up the yard and add fresh details to your home decor once warmer weather arrives, but never again should you have to clean your entire house in a whirlwind.
How do YOU tackle housework?  Do you have a favorite song that puts a pep in your step while you clean?
LINKED UP:


Window Shopping @ ZGallerie

26 Apr

I thought I’d start a new series of posts here at Taylor Made Home called “Window Shopping” and feature a different store/boutique/etsy shop each go round.  I kind of consider window shopping to be a hobby of mine, seeing as how actual shopping (as in, taking items to the cash register and pulling out the debit card to swipe) is out of the question.  Luckily, with the internet I can pretend I have an unending supply of funds and “shop” to my hearts content.  Wanna come along?

Today I’m peeking through the window computer screen and checking out ZGallerie, a great home furnishings store.  They actually have a store in Birmingham, AL (which is not too far away) that I want to visit soon.  But until then, their website will have to suffice.

(All photos are courtesy of ZGallerie, unless otherwise noted.)

Here’s what I’m loving:

Click here to view larger image
Prices range from $50 – $250. 

Fauxidermy!!  They have a deer, gazelle, horse, moose, and a ram.  But, for some reason, I’m really drawn to the rhino.  I just find it a tad more unique than the others.

Click here to view larger image
Currently $50.
I’ve been wanting a beverage dispenser for a while but haven’t found one that I love enough to purchase.  I do really like this one, though!  I could hang a label near the top (right under the lid) with a festive ribbon.  Of course, since we’re spending imaginary money, I’d purchase at least two or three of these babies so I could offer a variety of beverages to my guests in matching dispensers. 
Click here to view larger image
Currently $600.
If I owned a pool, I’d definitely buy one of these Venezia Pavillions.  David Bromstead used one of these in a backyard (yes, with a pool) that he designed years ago and I can’t for the life of me find a picture to show you.  Trust me, it was divine!  Anyways, I would love to decorate my backyard with black, white, and pops of color (yellow, turquoise, or green).
Click here to view larger imageClick here to view larger image
Click here to view larger image
Currently $8 – $50
Technically these metal lanterns are meant to be outdoors, but I love the idea of bringing them inside for a pop of color.  Plus, place a tea light inside and create a warm and welcoming glow at night.  I’d purchase all three sizes, but in different colors, and dress up my dining room table for a fun springtime tablescape.
Click here to view larger image
Currently $50 – $60 per panel.
I absolutely love geometric patterns on curtains.  Well on anything really, but definitely on curtains.  With my “play money”, I’d but four panels (two for each window in my living room).  If your interested, these curtains also come in Charcoal gray and Aquamarine blue.  Personally though, I’m partial to the Apple Green.
Click here to view larger image
Currently $25
No vet bills.  No cleaning up dog poo.  No pet hair on the sofa.  This is a dog that my husband would actually allow in the house.  As much as I love real dogs, I just can’t deal with one right now.  I already have a two-year-old potty-trainee who pees on my floor from time to time when he doesn’t make it to the bathroom.  Why bring a real dog into this choas?
Click here to view larger image
Currently $35
I’m thinking this would be a lot of fun sitting on our coffee table when we have friends come over.  Plus when Little Man is older, on rainy days, I can challenge him to a couple of friendly matches.  A kid-friendly table-top accessory that looks great?  Yes, please!
Click here to view larger image
Currently $1300
While we’re busy spending imaginary money, we shouldn’t forget to splurge on some big ticket items.  I love the look of this sofa and the fun green color.  However, in reality I probably wouldn’t buy this sofa because I’m a firm believer in buying big ticket items in neutral colors so you won’t tire of them too soon.  But since we’re spending pretend money, I can take it one step further and decorate my pretend dream house, right?
I hope you enjoyed these items I’ve picked out.  What’s your favorite item from ZGallerie?  Click HERE to visit their website and then come back and share.
Do you like to go on pretend shopping sprees online (or am I the only crazy one)?  When If you do, are you drawn to items you wouldn’t normally choose or are you pretty loyal to your style?

It’s Finally Here!

25 Apr

AFTER MONTHS OF WAITING,
HOUSE OF FIFTY IS FINALLY HERE!

As you would expect, House of Fifty is chock full of interior design inspiration.  However, as someone who loves to organize, I was pleasantly surprised by the number of articles geared towards organizing.  I mean, I know it has the words “Get Organized!” in large print, but I honestly only expected maybe one article about general organization and I halfway expected it to be titled “Organizing 101”.  However, I am happy to be proven wrong!

The organizing articles I enjoyed were:
  • Creating a Family Command Center (pgs. 66-73): Lists 6 key components of an effective Family Command Center as well as provides you with a sort of “mood board” that you might enjoy modeling yours after.
  • Meal Planning: Saving Time, Money, and Sanity (pgs. 84-93): 12 tips for making a menu plan work for you, along with a list of resources that includes two styles of menu planner to print out for your personal use.
  • Pantry Happiness (pgs. 94-99): This article includes some wonderful organizing eye candy for you to “oh and ah” over as well as a corresponding interview with the interior designer who worked her magic to create a pantry that not only functioned to its fullest capacity but also makes you want to move right in.
Another article that caught my attention (pgs. 40 – 46), though it wasn’t necessarily about organizing, was about Kayce Hughes and how she started a career that lead her to be more available to her children.  (All SEVEN of them!)  The article was an interview with Mrs. Hughes on how she juggles a career and motherhood.  One thing that stuck out to me was how her family makes eating breakfast together and eating dinner together a priority.
I would invite to you go grab your favorite beverage and then click HERE to read the premier issue of House of Fifty!  Once you’ve read it, I’d love for you to come back here and tell me what you think.  Oh, and once you’ve done that, click on over to Janell Beals’, House of Fifty’s Founding Editor, blog: Isabella and Max Rooms.

Found Another One…

22 Apr

I’m probably waaay behind on these online magazines that I keep stumbling upon, but I still want to share in case there are still some of you out there who haven’t heard of them before.

Hubby and I have a special place in our heart for Australia.  Neither of us have ever been there, nor do we (personally) know anyone from there.  I’m guessing our affection for this country has something to do with the Christian music that comes from this place:

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Hillsong Church
Not to mention that I could sit and listen to an Australian accent all day long!  Anyways, besides killer accents and awesome beaches, Australia now has something else that will cause you to sit up and take notice.  What am I referring to?  The magazine “Adore”, of course!

Click HERE to read the latest issue.
Speaking of magazines (and my love for them), if you click on the “magazine” tab right under my blog header, for your convenience I have listed all of my favorites.  So, grab yourself a cup of coffee or sweet tea and settle down for some online reading!

House Tour: Emily A. Clark

22 Apr
Emily A. Clark
Today’s house tour is the home of Emily A. Clark: blogger, interior decorator, and mother of three.  She is a big fan of color and know how to use pattern and texture to her advantage.  Enjoy taking a peek inside her classy and cool home:
One of the first rooms that you see when entering her home is the dining room: a perfect example of how different patterns can play nicely together in one room without looking too busy!  I’m especially loving the zebra print rug!  Plus, the cute bench seat in a dining room makes it seems a little less “serious”.
Opposite the dining room is their formal living room.  I think the art in this space is just perfect!  I also love how almost none of the furniture matches but it all “goes” together.  A mark of a truly talented decorator!
(Blog header, along with all photos, are property of Emily A. Clark, unless otherwise noted.)

This is her family room.  I love how dramatic those navy walls and graphic rug are!  That sunburst mirror draws your eye to the fireplace and the shots of green (the pillows) add some fun color to the room.

A gallery of photos behind/around the television is a great way to take the focus of that black box but still allow it to remain out in the open.
Ahh…my beloved horizontal stripes!  Don’t they look amazing in this space?  I also love the sprinkling of color throughout this breakfast nook: green geometric curtains and pink flowers, along with yellow and orange fruit.  I love how fruit adds color to a space while providing an impromptu snack when needed.  🙂  (Sorry, I’m hungry…hadn’t had breakfast yet!)
Around the corner is a wall where the kid’s jackets are hung.  I love how she created a gallery wall out of her kid’s art.  I guarantee, you will make your kids feel like a little Picasso when their artwork is displayed this way!

Her office is one of my favorite rooms in her house.  Colorful, patterned curtains; an expedit bookcase; and a “moody” wall color all lend to a sophisticated space that’s perfect for getting work done!
Check out the delicious looking, green campaign dresser!  Have you ever seen anything more fun?  I also love the personal gallery wall of Emily’s favorite things.
Her bedroom is equally sophisticated with her canopy bed (love!), white bedding (love!), sunburst mirror (love!), and cowhide rug (love!).  Can’t you tell I love this space?  I’m especially fond of what’s beside her bed: a couple of pink flowers in a clear vase and a clear lamp on top of a white side table.  Gorgeous!
I wish I could be a little girl again, because if I could, I would definitely paint a wall in my room just like this one!  What a lucky little girl!
This is one lucky little dude as well.  I love that this space works great for a young boy but it can easily transition to his teenage years.
This hall bath is the final stop on our tour.  It’s the one her kids use and I think it’s just perfect.  They are the artists who created the beautiful paintings above the, um, john.  I also love the striped curtain.  But my favorite part of this room:
Love the numbered hooks!  No she doesn’t have a fourth on the way…just needed an even number.  Hmm…kinda makes me want four though.  🙂
I hope you enjoyed this tour.  Emily is such a talented decorator, as you can see.  If you loved her home, then stop by her blog and show her some love.
I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend! 

Organized Home: Kid’s Rooms (Part 2 – Toys that Migrate)

22 Apr
NOTE: EVEN IF YOU DON’T HAVE KIDS OF YOUR OWN, DO NOT SKIP THIS POST… THERE IS SOMETHING HERE FOR YOU TOO, I PROMISE!!

Let me speak to the moms out there first:

To catch up and read Part 1, click HERE.

Now I know this series is about organizing kid’s bedrooms and/or playrooms buuuuut, if we were honest, how many would admit that on any given day our living rooms look more like playrooms because of the toys?  Don’t be shy.  Raise your hand because I’ve got mine raised too!

Switching gears just a bit, let’s talk about how you entertain with other families.  Of course, if the children are the same age then they will usually entertain each other and play together.  But what happens with you’ve got a ten-year-old and your dinner guests have a three-year-old?  I recommend that as long as you have friends who are still having children, then you have a small assortment of toys for each age group from baby on up.

What do I mean?  Grab a basket and put toys in it that are appropriate for babies.  Get another baskets and store away toddler toys.  Find yet another and stash some games or books for elementary age.  Once you’ve gotten a pretty good assortment and all the toys are categorized, store them in a location that isn’t in the way of your day-to-day life but is easy to get to when company comes.  (Ex – linen closet? mudroom?  pantry? laundry room?- anywhere is fine.) 

If you’re having trouble remembering what a two year old likes to play with, then go to any online store and search the approriate age group.  Most stores have categories like “ages 2-4” and “ages 6-8”.  From there you can see what will probably appeal to your little guests and then either purchase directly from that store or better yet, go to yard sales and thrift stores to buy secondhand (just be sure to thoroughly clean your purchases before handing them over to little hands).

The only age you really don’t have to plan for is the age of your own kids because the toys in your child’s room should suffice and it will teach “junior” how to share his own things.

Now, I’d like to talk to those of you who don’t have kids of your own:

Even if you don’t have kids (yet?), I bet you have friends who do have children.  Right?  Well, I am about to give you some tips that are going to make those friends think you are amazing! 

How often do you invite those friends-with-kids over and the parents end up spending all of their time chasing the little ones around because there isn’t anything to occupy them (the kids, not your friends)?  Well, the solution is as easy as providing toys for those children to play with.  How?  Follow the same advice I gave the moms above, beginning with the paragraph that begins with: “What do I mean?…”.

Everyone back together now:

Whether your kids make your living room look like a disaster zone or you want to know where to stash those toys for your guests, these products can provide the storage you want with the style your used to:

Take a console table like the one above, add baskets to the lower shelf, and voila!  You’ve got toy storage.  The baskets are easily accessible by the kids and clean up will be a breeze.
Behold, the super-multi-tasking storage ottoman.  Keeps toys inside while providing extra seating.  All you have to decide is whether you want to get several smaller ones (as shown above) or…
Or, go with one large piece.  Remember, if you choose the larger one, it’s best to categorize the toys and then stash those baskets or bins inside the larger ottoman.  Otherwise, it’s nothing more than a plush toy box…and you know how I feel about toy boxes!
Another option is to take something that was meant for an entryway/mudroom and turn it into a window bench (placed under a window, of course).  Purchasing/using one like the example above will give you three separate compartments for toys.
Of course, if you don’t have any of these items above, simply grab yourself a large box or basket and put all kinds of toys in it.  Yes, the kids will have to do a little digging to find what they want, but if you don’t mind the extra minute or two of clean up (it’s really not that hard to toss everything into a basket), then all that matters is that your youngest guests are happy.
No matter what you decide to use, don’t forget to label all baskets, bins, or boxes!  Makes finding what you need easier for you and for the kids.

I’ve Got to Focus

19 Apr

It’s a woman’s perogative to change her mind, right?

When I started Taylor Made Home a couple of months ago, I wanted to write about decorating and organizing, which are two of my favorite hobbies.  Then, a couple of weeks into my blog, I decided to change its subject to one that is a little more broad: homemaking/motherhood.  However, the past month or so has shown that, even though I made that change, the vast majority of my posts remain about organizing and decorating.

Because of this, I am going to fully commit to the organizing/decorating niche.  Although, technically, I never really left it.  🙂  Even though I am making this commitment, I will still share bits of other things from time to time while still keeping the focus primarily my chosen niche.

So, with that being said, I’d like to share my revamped mission statement:

With my faith as the backbone, I hope to encourage, motivate, and inspire other women to become better wives, mothers, and home keepers by showing them how to create a home that is both beautiful and efficient; a place that they can raise their children, welcome friends, and minister to strangers.

What does all this mean?  It means that nothing is going to change in regards to the way I post or relate to you.  But it does mean that I am committing to a niche in a way that will be relevant, informative, and entertaining.  I hope you like what is to come.