Life + Style

August 25, 2014

Home Organization | Command Center

In preparation for back to school I recently created a Home Organization Center in our kitchen to control and file mail, bills, and school things.  While we typically enter through our front door, our kitchen also has an exterior door that leads straight to our driveway and I'm finding that the kids and I are using that as an exit more and more.  It's really nice to have all of our last minute things corralled in one place, like my keys and snacks!  And it helps to keep the our entry hall nice and clutter free when we come home.

 I really wanted a single place where I could sort our mail, pay bills, and organize school things.  I know the paperwork will only continue to grow as my children get older and enter elementary school and I want to start a system in place now.  I turned to Nordstrom home decor for some pretty things to make this useful corner pretty as well as functional.  I splurged on a polka dot ceramic candle that says "escape the ordinary" and plan to use it to store pens once the candle is finished.  Do you re-purpose your pretty candle jars?  I also want to get this docking station since my cell phone is always laying on the counter here charging!  Looks like pretty good stocking stuffer.  Hint Hint.

All the junk mail goes straight into the trash while the bills get placed on our new snail mail tray along with any invitations ready to get added to my planner.  In the drawers, I keep office supplies, my checkbook, and random items like our school handbook and tuition booklet.  Everything is in one place. I've got a file box under the counter that houses medical bills.  I swear that might just need it's own cabinet soon.

I also cleared out the cabinet to free up some space for school related items and snacks.  I'm tired of running out of snacks half-way through the school week because the kids or Matthew wanted some at home.   So I bought four pink plastic containers to fill with pretzels, one for each school day she'll attend, to keep in her designated snack basket in this cabinet.  Tagg has two blue ones in his basket for his two days of school.  Designated school cups will also stay in their bins with other school approved snack options so they can learn to pack their own bags in the morning.  I think it's going to be really helpful to have our school snacks separate from the regularly accessed food.

 I'm curious if you have any special tips for staying organized for school.  Please share!  You may remember from last year, but all art gets a spot on either our gallery wall above the command center or hung in the playroom.  That solves the problem of how to control it, we hang it.  At the end of summer I go through it to make room for the new school year.  It's really easy to determine was gets saved forever when you're little one's heart isn't still fully invested in every piece.  Keep a few favorites and toss the rest.

I've rounded up a few more of my favorite home decor items from Nordstrom for you below.  As always, almost everything in Nordstrom's home decor section is under $200 but I've kept my price point below $75.  No need to spend a fortune on pretty.  There is no reason you can't have a good looking and functional command center!  So many of these items would look great in your bedroom too!

1 Smart Phone Dock 2 Snail Mail Dish 3 Carved Wood Frame 4 Imagination Candle 5 Eye Glasses Trinket Tray 6 Snap Magnet Frames 7 Magnetic Chalkboard 8 Harper Euro Pillow 9 BE KIND Message Board 10 Beach Print 11 Chalkboard Groceries Sign 12 Magnetic Chalkboard Letter 13 Kate Spade Glass Bowl 14 Cereal Bowl

 Jeans | shoes

You can see where I corral all of my work related items, like camera lenses, stationery, etc. in this post here. I'm really lucky to get two surfaces in our house dedicated to my things.  I can't imagine how amazing it would be to have a whole room but I'll take these two designated areas any day.  It's really nice to alleviate that last minute where is it stress by keeping things in a central location.

*This post was sponsored by Nordstrom. As always, all opinions and selections are purely mine. Thank you for supporting the companies that help support me!


  1. I'm so envious of a space like that, you've set it up perfectly. I love how it's not adjoined to other kitchen cabinets.

    Emily from F is for

  2. Hi Julia! I gave you some shout out love from Charlotte, NC today on my blog, Love what you do - KEEP IT UP! ~Susan Bowman

  3. Ha ha, I call mine my "command center" as well and my husband thinks I'm such a dork! But yours is pretty…mine consists of a big basket and piles! Until we rip out our silly wet bar and put in a useful kitchen desk.

    1. I day dream about when we can rip this out and build something more useful for the space. I want a pantry with built-in storage for bills and paperwork and such. That will a few years I think!

  4. Love this! I just made an organization station, as I've been calling it, out of our old pantry. I still need to pretty it up like yours but it feels so nice to have a place to put everything!

  5. Currently redoing my apartment entryway so this post was very helpful! Also, can we talk about how amazing you look in that simple outfit?!

  6. When my three children were in school, in addition to a big family calendar, I kept a large 3 ring binder with pocket dividers and some plastic page sleeves for each child. Classroom lists, extra-curricular stuff, permission slips, report cards, and anything worth saving went into the file. .At the end of each school year, I sorted through the accumulated papers and transferred worthy items to each child's memory box. We even had sections for each parent and the house. This was very easy to keep up with and saved us many tears over the years.

  7. That is a great space Julia! Pretty, functional and super organized. You look so cute! Can you share where you found your shoes and handbag? Love those! I may need to pick up that sweet bird bowl you've pictured. I have a soft spot for birds.

  8. Your place look amazing, so clean and very well organized!
    End of Tenancy cleaners Ealing

  9. Great space! I love how you styled it! And that's such a good idea about the snacks!! I'm going to have to implement that one!

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