When my children were young, one of the main problems I had was what to do with all the stuff that had been brought downstairs during the course of the day. The kids were always bringing things down from their room to play with or wear, etc. Everything ended up downstairs everywhere. So throughout the day, I would try to pick up a bit, just so we were not tripping over it all day. But, the question was, what do I do with it? I wasn’t going to run upstairs every time I picked something up – it would take too much time to do that. Then, a friend gave me this idea and I have used it ever since.

I put three nice looking baskets/bins (one for each child – I have three) on the stairs, to the side, so you could still use the stairs. The bins weren’t in the way at all; they were to the side and they weren’t large. Each one was labeled with a child’s name. During the day, as I found something that belonged upstairs, I would put it in the respective basket, and I would also have the kids do the same, as we did little clean-ups throughout the day. Then at the end of the day, when we were cleaning up for the day and getting ready for bed, each child would take their bin upstairs to their room and put away the contents. Then they would replace the bin on the stairs for the next day. It was a great idea and was so helpful for holding those little things all through the day.

Eventually I added another basket for myself for the things I needed to take upstairs, as well. What a game changer it was! It was such a helpful tool; I used it until my kids left for college. Be encouraged that you can maintain a collected home and still allow yourself and your children freedom to explore. Simple tips like these offer strategies that bring about helpful solutions.

Article Written by: Kim Shattell