The New Home Must List

The New Home Must List

If you’re just moving to Bloomington and trying to get your new house in order, you’re probably feeling the overwhelm pretty hard. Packing up your old stuff was probably hard enough and chances are everyone in your home got to the point where they’re just shoveling stuff in boxes to get it done. Now in your new home, you’re dealing with the consequences. 

Here are three things you can put on your must list to get a handle on moving in.

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14 Cool Coat Hook Ideas

Coat hooks are a great way to remove the friction between taking your coat off and putting it where it goes. Here are 14 creative coat hooks that you can easily install in your Mudroom.  



With free floating hooks you can create your own wall art while still having function.  



This cool design let's you fold in the hooks not in use. 



Another benefit to free floating hooks is the ability to make them work with your general color scheme.  



Can you blame us on this one? I mean come on! 



I'm really into the stain and paint combo. I love it in furniture and I love it with the little things too.  



Another utility based work of design. Really nice in front of the blue accent wall.  



With gray walls being such a dominating trend in paint choice, you've got to find places to infuse strong color to keep it human.  



These things are a little weird but for the right weirdo they work! 


"Help! heeeelp!"

"Help! heeeelp!"

Fun for the kids, they can even pick their favorite color as their hook. Being tidy is fun, right kids?  



And if your dogs are your kids, here you go! Although, they might not be able to tell which is theirs. But maybe these are scented, you never know! 



If you live in a rainy place, you've got to have your umbrella and smock ready to go.  



It's ok to be cute. I don't mind a little kitch.  



Never forget your keys and your coat. It'll become a habit in no time.  



Over sized clothes pins. It almost makes too much sense.  

Adding character to your home can be simple and useful. You don't have to decorate all at once. Our family motto is "here a little, there a little". It all adds up over time, so consider your hook situation and see if you can come up with something authentic and original!

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Using Your Dining Room Correctly

The biggest issue with Dining Rooms today is that they are improperly used. All too often the dining room table becomes a temporary storage counter for homework, Amazon boxes and things that haven't made it upstairs to where they belong.  

Why is the dining room a catch all for everyone's clutter?

Two reasons: The first is that the dining room is typically conveniently located near the entrance and has very little daily use other than dinner time. The second reason is that each member of the family has an unwritten rule about what is appropriate to leave there until they are ready to put it away for good.

For kids, they may throw their bookbag in the dining room because that's where they start homework after their after school snack. For dad, maybe it's where magazines and junk mail goes until it's sifted through and ready to be thrown away. For mom, a chair is a good place to put her purse down for now and rest her sweater. 

The problem with these unwritten rules is that they clutter the dining room until it's time for dinner. Then you have a stressful last minute ditch effort to clean up the table and get ready to eat; or you give up on the space and eat dinner in front of the tv. That can really put a damper on the routine of family dinner together.  

The solution has to come from identifying your family's unwritten rules about the space and then figuring out appropriate places for each of the items to be taken and stored.  

For coats and shoes, directing your family and coaching them to use a mud room would help and for mail putting an inbox near the entrance.  

Some homes duplicate the function of a dining area by having a formal dining room near the entrance and a dinette off the kitchen. In this case, often one is used for food and the other (the formal dining) is more of a magazine show room. It might be a good idea to think about converting the formal dining room into a family homework and office space.  

In general, it is my philosophy to only give rooms a single use whenever possible. This prevents you from over cluttering spaces with multi-functionality and creates habits for each space. When it's dinner time you know it will happen in the dining room where you shut off work, forget about school and enjoy each other's company and remember what family is all about.  

How does your family do dinner time? 

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How to Organize Your Life!!!

Tax day came and went and nothing could have stopped that train from coming. Each year I feel like I get a little better a dealing with this frenzied week but there is still a lot to figure out. The major lesson I've learned is that you have to stay organized and you have to have a system. Nothing like finishing my taxes motivates me more to organize everything else in my life. 

The system I subscribe to is described best in the book entitled "Getting Things Done" by David Allen. I would recommend reading it as opposed to listening to the audio book because you'll want to use it as a reference guide after you're finished reading it. The following steps will greatly organize your life so that you're only taking one thing on at a time versus trying to do it all at once.

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