WFMW-My Organizing Secret

I love organization. I get weepy when I see pretty file folders and clipboards.

I used to be the mostorganizedpersonintheworld. Althoug
h I never had a crown and sash, bearing such a title.

And then I had kids. 

My inner guide to organization is thwarted on a daily basis. Because my children? They do not care if all the Legos go together and they certainly aren't losing sleep over the doll clothes being crammed in with the play dough. Not that I've lost sleep over such a trivial thing {yawn}.

A friend stopped by the other day and she went on and on about my organized house! I know I had that who me? look. Then I realized she was talking about my baskets. 

Baskets, are the key to my semi-organized success. I buy most of my baskets at thrift stores or garage sales and I hardly ever pass one up! I usually spray paint them if they need new life.

I have baskets for toys, a basket on the dresser for my hubby's wallet and keys, baskets for books, magazines and linens.

Before, the unsightly, ever-growing pile of books next to my bed:

And now, after my one dollar makeover:

Of course if you look inside my baskets? Um, yeah, not so organized. 

And that's my little secret! I have a place for everything (baskets), but not everything is organized in it's place (inside of baskets)!

Here's more on my basket case.

I tackle those messy baskets, one at a time.

And when I'm in a hurry or have unexpected company, I have a place to toss all our clutter!

It works for me!

Links have now been closed. Please join us again next week!

Works for Me Wednesday Participants
1. Kirsty@Momedy:Non-Gardeners Guide to Amazing Flowers!
2. Holly@Homebody (reuseable drinking straws)
3. Kate @ Which Proverbs 14:1 Woman? (Multitasking Kitchen Gadgets)
4. Smockity Frocks (Encouraging Desired Behaviors w/ Marbles!)
5. Joy @ Five J's (Our Homeschool Curriculum)
6. Heather @ Just Doing My Best (save on restaurant bill)
7. Amy @ Momstoolbox (Twitter)
8. Erin (homeschooling even in sickness)
9. Laura @ Heavenly Homemakers (Twitterlessness)
10. Homemade Baby Food
11. The Diaper Diaries (Quick CPR Training)
12. Cooking During Stolen Moments (bacon maple cookies)
13. Grocery Cart Challenge (Frugal Travel)
14. Amy @ Finer Things (it's a stretch)
15. Frugal Girls! {Homemade Foaming Soap}
16. Home School Dad (home school co-op & carnival)
17. Laura @ Heavenly Homemakers (Twitterless)
18. A Simple Walk (letting my kids rule the kitchen)
19. Kristen (storing bulk foods)
20. The Happy Housewife ~ Cheap Airline Tickets
21. Lisa@BlessedwithGrace(craft ideas for toddlers)
22. Bake at 350 (the BEST baking resource)
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25. Mommy's Idea Book (Saving on Movies)
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27. Sunnymama (vegetarian burger shapes)
28. Kelly@ Fruit of the Womb (birthday countdown chain)
29. Emily @ The Pilot's WIfe(Baby Food)
30. Jen@Balancing Beauty and Bedlam( Swedish pancakes)
31. Katie @ Clean & Classic Interiors(Sterilite Tupperware)
32. Many Little Blessings {Cool Homeschooling Zine Plus Giveaway}
33. april(expanding my mind)
34. Hannah@WisdomsPupil (eating more veggies)
35. Raising Olives (Car Box)
36. ElizabethG (Frugal and Green Cleaners)
37. Monica@DailyDwelling (digital scrapbooking)
38. Niki @ Free 2 Be Frugal (Pulling the Plug)
39. Amber @ ClassicHousewife (Baskets in the Fridge)
40. Green Baby Guide (Menu Planning Strategy)
41. Gretchen (HELP - easy snacks for kids)
42. Maddy
43. Parent Wonder - Tips on Childproofing Your Home
44. Weird, Unsocialized HS'ers (blog tip)
45. Prairie Cottage Rose (olive oil cleanser)
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61. Lisa @ Moore Minutes (What do do with Flower LEFTOVERS)
62. Lisa (Summer Art School-at home!)
63. Min Kona (simplifying the wardrobe)
64. MamaBear 50 FRUGAL TIPS
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66. Alexa (craft closet)
67. the BLAH BLAH BLAHger (paint stripper)
68. Sarah Mae (Blogaversary Party - $500 in prizes!)
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70. Molly Green ( unmatched dishes)
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74. Shannon @ Seeking to Glorify (Our Money Makeover)
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76. Beautiful (SKR Shoe Giveaway ending)
77. Harper (Trial and Error Home Ec)--diy baking powder
78. Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates (Just Right Corn Bread)
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81. Tracey @ Girls to Grow (Quality Family Resources)
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85. Sara @ Learning the Frugal Life(Multi-tasking)
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90. In...Fence (Mail Order Perennial Gardening)
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92. Kari - Smoothies/Fruit
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102. Nancy (Basket Weaving Reed Storage)
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105. Katie (Quieting My Heart)
106. Frugal Carol - Free Mother's Day Gift
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117. Beth@Not a Bow in Sight (Losing My Baby Weight)
118. Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect (cooking shortcuts)
119. Parenting the Tiniest of Miracles (How to Share Maternity Clothes)
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143. April (Binky Fairy)
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155. Myra (My New Coupon System)
156. Nichole (roadtrips a giveaway!)
157. Christy @ Mercy Every Morning (No Mess Bacon)
158. It's Frugal Being Green (Practical Ways to Save Water)
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161. karen @ Mommy, I'm Home
162. MG (Gardening / Container Ideas)
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166. pennypinchinmomm (shopping helpers)
167. Pam at BeyondJustMom (graceful apologies)
168. Arrowsprings (No more photo clutter)
169. Grannyann
170. Mom of Faith (Unclog Your Sinks Naturally)
171. Moneywise Moms (Pita Pizzas)
172. In The Lord's Path (toy organization)
173. Christy (gluten free traveling)
174. sarah-organizing wedding and graduation announcements
175. anglina ( my lists, chicken solutions)
176. TheEckLife-Organize it!
177. Amy-Free Samples
178. Sarah@VintageChicHome(coupon organizing)
179. Jami@Sweet & Simple Mama
180. Mama Said (Frugal Antacid)
181. Milehimama (Make Your Own Warm Delights)
182. Amanda (free 411 correct link)
183. Samantha (little photo albums)
184. Carrie (napping with a toddler)
185. Sonshine(free homeschool resources)
186. Christine @ becomingp31 (Chore charts/lead roles)
187. Nichole @ A Call to Higher Places (My Hot Shopping Trip works for me!)
188. Michelle@Gotchababy (sippy cup tether Giveaway!)
189. Michelle @ Saving Some Green (Egg Slicer)
190. missy @ missysthrifty (saving on vacation)
191. Lisa (Summer To-Do List)
192. Making This Home
193. Kristine (check it out)
194. The Gaines Gang(Cute Hair Bow Holder)
195. Jackie @ Brain of Mama
196. Sherry @ Lamp Unto My Feet (Hiccups!)
197. Lauren @thetrendycouple
198. Becky (easy dessert)
199. Michelle (trying to conceive-waiting)
200. Hip Mama (Non-Meal Planning)
201. Amy @ Tiny Blessings (using those reusable totes)
202. momsfrugal (Rejuvelac from sprouted wheat!)
203. Ginger (Sharing My Blogaversary with Family and Friends WFM!)
204. Sandra @ A Lot of Savings (Eliminating the Cable Bill)
205. Opps! That's Rena!! (Sharing My Blogaversary with Family and Friends WFM!)
206. ChickyMama@ Happy Little House (Organized kids clothes)
207. Rachel (Using your paper scraps stash)
208. Mama Koala (PUPPPs scratching relief)
209. Houstonmom (storing 50 lbs of flour)
210. Christine (keep brains active in the summer)
211. Christine @ Lily of the Valley (10 Frugal Family Fun Activities)
212. Angie @ Annies Home (tips for produce)
213. Abbi (kids and reading)
214. Merrie
215. Claire @ Mumologic (Pizza Dough with Guinness!!)
216. BeckyB @ Have A Cup With Me (Organizing Lids)
217. Homemaker Barbi (Table Setting 101)
218. Grateful for Grace (an easy family tradition)
219. A Mommy in Brazil (Homemade salad dressing)
220. Repurposing Kitchen Gadget
221. Kristi_runwatch (homemade hummingbird feeder)
222. Catherine @ Adventures In Domesticity (weekly cooking)
223. Cardamom's Pod (DIY Repairs)
224. Penny @ A Day in the Life at Our House (organizing files)
225. rachel @ mytinyrobotheart (ribbon organization)
226. Linda C (Swiffer Duster)
227. Mozi Esme (B todder crafts)
228. Liz @ Frugally Blonde (Buying Generic Diapers)
229. Sandy @Jesus & Dark Chocolate (creative/free toys!)
230. Tiffany--summer swimming
231. Dawn (Chore System)
232. Col @ life by muse (A New Take on Making Mistakes)
233. 'Becca (toilet training)
234. Carolina Mama (Biggest Winner)
235. Holly@ A Mommy's Blessings
236. Holly @ A Mommy's Blessings(Nerve Central...real link, sorry!)
237. Denise@Fullnest
238. Heather@WoolandFlax(homemade kleenex)
239. Saving Money Ideas (chocolate chip coffee cake)
240. Angie (organizing our homeschool day
241. Meshellyn (Inexpensive H@llm@rk Cards)
242. Shoebee (Giveaway)
243. Elena@My Domestic Church Hospital hints followup
244. Cheerios_Underfoot-Cheap Homeschooling materials (giveaway!)
245. Traci @ Traveling the Tightrope (Free Aussie Muslin Swaddling Wraps)
246. Diana @ Behomehappy (less trash)
247. Kate's Kitchen: transforming an old computer desk
248. Andi @ A Little Piece of Pink (how to store clothes in a drawer)
249. Nena @ Watch Nena Save - Meatloaf Muffins
250. exhale. return to center. (our birthday books)
251. Kara (Trash to Treasure sign)
252. My flat screen tv (of sorts) for $10
253. Peggy @ rainberryblue (being #4)
254. BandSP
255. LaVonne (Internet Printable Coupons)

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Laura@HeavenlyHomemakers said...

UGH. SO sorry. I didn't mean to link twice. I thought Mr. Linky was rejecting me, so I linked up a second time and there I am twice. Mr. Linky's been acting so strange lately. He must have spring fever.

Amy@ MomsToolbox said...

I'm all about the baskets and containers and bins, myself. They can really help things look much better in a flash!!

Kirsty said...

No better organizing tool then a basket, I have a gajillion of them too and now you have inspired me to tackle them one at a time-brilliant (I do a lot of last minute stuffing)
Loving the little egg on that table, and the frame-gorgeous!!

Kristen said...

Sometimes the illusion of neatness and order is all we need to keep our sanity! I think you have a great plan.

Bridget said...

Yep...baskets are our friends! :)

Wisdom's Pupil said...

Sorry, mine came up twice too!

amber@classichousewife said...

Mine's about baskets too! IN THE FRIDGE. Baskets are awesome because they contain lots of STUFF and keep it from spilling out all over the house. =)

Your Frugal Friend, Niki said...

I have a love affair with baskets and organization too.


Love this post!

Maddy said... me see if I can figure that out a moment?

Love the baskets idea but I think mine would have to be baskets with lids!.

I'm thinking of investing in a few of those pop up laundry hampers as things are getting a little out of hand around here.

This is my first time joining in so I'm a bit worried I'm on the wrong track......I thought it was 'frugal' rather than organizing, so if I've made a hic-cup I apoligise.

Jenny said...

I like to be organized as well. Yes, my house can get messy, but having a place for everything makes clean up very easy.

ilovemy5kids said...

I love containers! I sometimes use flower-pots - works great for hairbrushes. Great tip!

Mama Bear said...

THanks for hosting this each week - I hope people like my contribution!

Falling Around said...

Ah yes, baskets are glorious, aren't they?

I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one pretending NOT to lose sleep over the fact that the Star Wars action figures are mixed in with the Batman action figures. And don't even get me started on the Littlest Pet Shop & My Little Pony fiasco...

{ L } said...

Baskets are a GREAT way to organize...thank you for inspiring me to do that! :)

Laura said...

Wheee!! I just had to comment on this one because I love seeing other "junkies" in action. Baskets are beautiful aren't they. I seriously can't get enough. They are everywhere in my house as well. I am so over the top addicted which might explain the whole "junkie" thing LOL


Andrea said...

I mistakenly thought I would be one of the first posts for WFMW. . .it's only 2:31 a.m. EST!

Thanks for continuing the tradition. . .LOVE WFMW!

Andrea in NC

se7en said...

I must be honest: I am a stuffer and jammer when guest are due... its the months later when you are trying to find something and we have to dredge through all the stuffed detritus that actually we don't need and I should have tossed it instead of stuffing it! Thanks for doing a great job!

Col said...

Love the organizing! I'm with you, it feels *SO* good!

Where are all the WFMW peeps? I don't see anybody? Haloooo out there! ;)


Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates said...

Love your baskets! I've been using more and more of them! They are just so handy.

A happy heart at home said...

Great idea! Thanks for hosting this.


Hoosier Homemade said...

I organize with baskets too. I love them. Thanks for hosting!

Nancy Jacobs Basketmaster said...

I LOVE your basket! You should pop over to my blog and learn how to weave your own. I think you can never go wrong with baskets to help you organize and to decorate your house as well. They really serve a dual purpose like that. Have a great day and thanks for hosting WWMW.

Diane said...

I am slowly learning everything looks neater with a basket. I have started collecting them too. For me I really need to figure out where the basket will go and then go out and purchase it and not just buy them and hope they will fit or look nice. I have a few that arent being used but with your posts on baskets you have given me a few ideas.
Thank you

Anonymous said...


I wholeheartedly agree with you on the basket thing. That's the only way I can keep our paper clutter from taking over the entire house!


Cage Free Monkeys said...

Thanks for hosting--this is my first Wednesday!

Sheila said...

I have baskets everywhere, too. Love them.

I even collect them, because I think they look so pretty! And it's easy to shove them places and carry them places.

Every now and then organizing stores come out with cardboard boxes covered with pretty fabric, or something, but these don't last. Baskets do.

Now if I could just teach the kids to carry their baskets to their rooms...

Thanks for hosting!

Visit To Love, Honor and Vacuum today!

Lori said...

I agree!!! Baskets are an absolute necessity to containing the chaos!!!

The Book Lady Online said...

Love your basket ideas!

Carol @SheLives said...

I totally dig your basket thing. I have a little bit of that going on at Hacienda She Lives. The trouble is, like you said, looking inside the basket and seeing the truth of my organizational abilities (or lack thereof). Doll clothes in the play dough? Hah! I love it!

Jennifer said...

Oooooh, I lurve baskets too! =)

Happy Wednesday!

ET @ Titus2:3-5 said...

I have been using baskets for years for kids toys that migrate into the living room, but hadn't even contemplated putting a basket in my own bedroom for books and such! Yay! Great idea.

Jamie said...

Thanks for hosting! This is my first WFMW, but I've loved reading all the other tips for the past few months.

Kara said...

I love baskets. I used to sell Longaberger and so I have a wonderful collection of baskets of all sizes to hide my clutter:)

grannyann said...

I am also a basket person. They are great for holding sprays and extra body washes in the bathroom or for holding brushes and combs. I use for holding papers and notebooks by my computer. I have one holding my pill bottles.

Christy said...

I am the same way! I pick up almost every basket that I can find!

grannyann said...

P.S. I signed up for the Wednesday thing but guess I didn't put a comment in the right place. Sorry. Can you give some instructions and do we sign up each Wednesday?

Amanda said...

yes you are so the queen of baskets! I love it - when I grow up I wanna be just like you ;-D
and I CAN NOT wait to see the headboard!!

Jami said...

Great ideas ladies,
I love it!

Amy said...

Not a basket person here, but I do find other ways to create the illusion of organization and cleaned house for company.

Just don't look in my closet...

Michelle said...

love the baskets myself, although once things are tossed into one, sometimes they never see the light of day again!!

Jackie D'Amato-Reitnauer said...

I love baskets too! I'm currently looking for another one for a side table we just re-purposed because the cats keep knocking things off of it.

Also, I accidentally posted my link w/o a subject, d'oh!

Vanessa said...

I'm all about the baskets, too. It's one of the things that people tend to notice about our house. lol

Jim @ said...

Baskets are a great way to help keep organized (or at least semi-organized). They would make a great house warming gift idea as well.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Kristen and readers. I made a silly mistake by linking my sister's post under my name in lieu of hers. Please stop by for a quick walk along the beach and support her blogaversary party.

BTW: We both love organizing too. And, I even made another mistake by spelling oops wrong... ha! Thou shalt not go too fast!

Please correct if pos. and have a GREAT day in the blogosphere!

Ginger (and Rena of course!)

Tara Haidinger said...

I run a pro organizing business now, and one of the keys to my success is baskets and pretty boxes. Things inside don't have to look pretty because they look pretty on the outside. So great for photos too! Just have a box or basket for each child, year, whatever.

Also, I believe our bedrooms are painted the same color. Great minds think alike!

'Becca said...

How can you have that egg on your bedside table?!? Aren't you always knocking it over? I would!

I love your basket idea. I've done something like it with cloth drawstring bags for my kid's toys: throw all the small toys of the same basic kind into a bag, cinch it, and toss it into the pile of bags! A lot of sheet sets come in nice bags, often sold at yard sales.

Heather@WoolandFlax said...

Great idea. I'm always impressed with those who can find baskets for a dollar...nice work!

Multi-tasking Mommy said...

I love baskets too!

Recently I put a basket on my steps going up this way my steps aren't constantly filled with items that need to go up.

The new rule is that if there is an item in the basket it is to be taken upstairs and put in it's spot immediately!!!

TCKK said...

I love the basket idea and do it a little myself. But I need to get some more cause I still have to much clutter laying around. Great idea!!!

Anonymous said...

Ditto everything you said...only my babies don't so much mess with my organizing proclivities (yet)...It's my husband! I really wish I could go back n time to when his mom was cleaning his room FOR HIM as a child//teenager and give her a good talking-to!