Chad and I visited my brothers last October in Portland, Oregon for a fun get away weekend. Besides being at one brother’s CD release, I got to tour another brother’s work place. This building was the coolest building/work space/office I had ever seen. Definitely cutting edge and just down right amazing.
I was fascinated by their “war rooms”- whole rooms dedicated to temporary projects. These rooms start out as empty and then when the company lands an account or a project, the team takes over the room with vision boards, models, brainstorming sessions, design ideas, prototypes, etc. When the project is over they clean it out and the room moves on to the next project.
How cool would it be to have a ‘war room’ in your home? A space that was fluid — dedicated to the current mom projects at hand — always transforming with the different events — whether they be Christmas, science fair, birthday party, scout dinner or a wedding.
Since I don’t have a spare room laying around, I go with “war baskets” instead. Baskets that are dedicated to current projects. Bins that change contents by the week, month or season. Baskets that help me organize events– months and weeks ahead. Bins that hold supplies and materials for upcoming holidays, church activities, school assignments, family events, etc.
I have 4 bins dedicated as my war bins. Right now they are holding
Crew’s Birthday Party
Teacher Appreciation Week
I use the baskets as a place to gather items for these projects as I am going. A place to collect all the stuff that goes with each event. That way I can do a little bit here and a little bit there. The containers help to diffuse my stress and keep everything organized.
For example, although Crew isn’t getting baptized until June, I already had his baptism towel made. It goes in the temporary Baptism bin. I found napkins for his luncheon. They went in the baptism bucket. I bought some wrapping paper that I might use as a runner on the table. It went in the bin too.
I have also started to collect for his birthday party. Party favors here. Tablecloths there. Popcorn bins, games, nacho dishes, etc. And I have a place I can store the supplies all in one place until the big day.
My Teacher Appreciation Week basket is overflowing with banners, centerpieces, paperwork, flyers, office supplies, ribbon, scrapbook paper, etc.
I don’t bother to label the baskets because they are fluid and change with each project. Sometimes they rotate on a weekly basis and sometimes they stay for 2 or 3 months. It just depends on the events on the calendar.
Not too long ago these same bins were
Camp Kick Off
Next month when Teacher Appreciation Week is over, I will clear out that bin and bring in Cousin Camp. They are always moving and holding new projects.
Right now I keep my project baskets in my office — just on the floor until I can get shelves in the closet to fit the size of these bins. But a storage room or garage or a closet somewhere would work too.
These “war baskets” aren’t pretty, but this organization system has worked for me for years. The baskets allow me to piece together projects here and there, when I have time and when I think about it. They allow me to buy things early and on sale. They facilitate picking up things from friends and family whenever I am out and about. They give me a place to collect supplies and keep them separated. These project baskets are how I keep my sanity, how I keep ahead of the game, how I avoid last minute shopping trips, and how I save money. The baskets take off the stress to remember everything the day of the event too. I can just pick up the basket and go.
So if you have lots of projects going on find a room, a space, a basket, a shelf, or a closet that can be designated for rotating projects. And make your own version of a “war room”.
10 thoughts on “War Room”
I love it!!!!! I am working on a sister in laws baby shower right now and so far just have a pinterest board dedicated to it….. Now I feel like I can start gathering stuff and get it in one spot.
Yeah! Whenever I write a post I wonder if I explained my true intent and the purpose well enough so that others can apply the info to their own life. I am glad you got it. A baby shower is a perfect example of one of these temporary projects. Good luck!
Nice work! I really struggle with the ‘a place for everything and everything in it’s place’ when it comes to short term projects (like doing the flowers for a friend’s wedding for example). With a 66sqm apartment, I have to be very thoughtful where things go, or there’s no room to move! In the case of the wedding, I put the (brand new) buckets at the end of my car space, with all the wedding specific supplies. Then when D-day came, I brought them upstairs, and added the items I needed from my toolkit, and we were good to go!
Tiffany! I love reading your blog- especially now that I’m getting ready to have a baby! 🙂 Anyway, those pictures from your brothers work, look exactly like what Sterling does when he is designing something new. Is your brother an Industrial Designer?
Hey Bethany! I am excited for you guys! My brother is not an industrial designer but he does work with them. I think he is more the guy that helps land the project for the company. He has lots of graphic design, business and sales experience.
I love this idea!! I feel like I have too many projects though to know which ones to put in the baskets (maybe that’s just me being overwhelmed)… I will have to think about this and how it might work for me. Thank you so much for sharing it though! What a great idea!
Tami, right now I could actually use about 8-10 baskets, but of course there are always space issues. So what I do is combine some events that are farther out on the calendar. Then as they move closer and other events get finished I separate then out and give them their own bin. Does that make sense? These bins are also a good marker to let me know when I am doing too much. I’ve turned things down recently because all my bins are full. Good luck!
I could have said exactly what Amee said..I too am working on my sis-in-laws baby shower and have started a “war room” bin.
Love this idea..thank you!
Brilliant idea! I am going to do this.Thanks for sharing Tiff!
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