Centralizing the Chaos

One of the reasons I love my house is its vast amounts of storage space. Coming from a one bedroom apartment to an entire house, complete with walk-in closets, a garage, and a full basement meant I had plenty of room to spread out!

I’ve spent nearly three years storing things willy-nilly, incorporating Don’s things with my own with no rhyme or reason. And now we’re in quite a pickle.

As I’ve accumulated tools and household items, they’ve dispersed. Extra nails? In the garage. Leftover plastic sheeting? Back hall closet. Tubes of caulk? Two in the hall closet, one in the garage and one in the basement. Leftover paint? It’s all centralized in the coal room in the basement, but the paintbrushes? Those would be in the garage. This means the simple search for, say, a flat-head screwdriver can pose maddening as I try to remember where I used it last. And in winter, the prospect of venturing into the cold, across the icy driveway and into the dark garage is never inviting.

So I’ve embarked on a mission to organize. For Christmas, my parents got me a huge, heavy duty utility cabinet for the basement. Getting the cabinet to my house in the first place was interesting, as I had to wait until my sister (and her truck) was available to bring it over. Then, we struggled to even get the monster in the house in the first place, so it sat on the back stairs for two weeks until a friend of Don’s came over and helped out. I started building the cabinet (comprised of approximately 792 pieces) on Super Bowl Sunday and made pretty good headway, overcoming the non-verbal, pictorial directions and identical-looking parts labeled W and BB and GF. But then, I got to the point where I needed a second set of hands, and the Super Bowl was about to start, so I put the project on hold. And it sat for another week and a half, during which I was worried the snow melt would flood into the basement.

But it didn’t, and Don and I finished assembling the cabinet one evening. We had a bit of a problem when we discovered that the cabinet – at 75 inches tall – is too tall for much of the basement. We found one place where it would fit, but it took some wrangling to get it around the ductwork. And now as I roam the house and find random home repair/maintenance/improvement materials, they’re beginning to migrate to a single point. No longer will my medicine cabinet boast a putty knife all its own, and the pliers in the kitchen drawer have given notice.

Heck, we may even put a pegboard in the basement to further organize things!


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