Monday, January 6, 2014

Every Nook and Cranny

When we moved into this house nine years ago this month, I wondered how in the world we would ever use up all it's space.  At the time, it was just Jamey, myself and almost-two-year-old Sam. With it's three bedrooms, office, two baths, kitchen, dining room, play room and living room, much of the house was empty most days as Sam followed me around and Jamey went to work.

Those days are long gone.  All three bedrooms are used (two are doubled up).  The office is now a nursery for childcare/respite.  The play room is also the school room, full to bursting with books and posters, maps and bulletin boards.  This house gets lived in 24/7, hard.  It no longer feels empty.  At times it feels as if we might split its seams and end up sprawled out across the lawn for all the neighborhood to see.  Please mind you that I'm not complaining. Not a day goes by that I am not thankful for all of it- not a day.

I'm always looking to better utilize our space.  It's much more practical than fretting about it (I know because I've tried ;-)). A few months ago, my attention fell on our front hallway- the space between the front door and the front hall closet.  When this house was built (and for many years after) there was a hallway that ran from the front door to the back door.  When the owners decided they'd had enough of traipsing out to the outhouse to relieve themselves, they chose the center of that hallway to install their indoor plumbing.  The front hall closet was also added- both additions now block off that front-to-back-of-the-house hallway.

Most recently, our play kitchen was housed in this spot.  It was accessible to little visitors (and our girls who still play with it at times) but I needed more school space.  During the winter months, Sam prefers to do his morning school downstairs because it's chilly upstairs. The living room (with the wood stove) though is right next to the school room where Sadie, Miriam and I are working.  We can be a bit distracting and laying on the couch to do your handwriting doesn't quite cut it for me.  I needed a space for him close to the stove room but further away from us girls...the front hall.

We had some repainting done and I stripped some floors upstairs.  The steps are the last part of this project and I hope to get to them this spring.  This explains why the steps are blue while nothing else is.  

I found a long, narrow folding table and Jamey kindly wired an outlet behind it.  The narrow table allows me enough access to the closet so I can retrieve my vacuum.  I added a cheap desk lamp and we were set.  Of course, I high-jacked the space immediately for some gift-making (more on that soon). I relocated all my sewing gear to that closet along with our extra coats, so the space functions as my sewing room when needed, too.

It's now back to it's original intended purpose and Sam has no excuse for why he can't do his math.  I jokingly call it his office to which he always grins.  So far, it's working very nicely for him.

The poster above the table is a  Bible & World History Timeline  and it's fascinating. It puts Biblical and world history side by side.

As you de-clutter and re-organize this year, keep your eyes out for those spots just waiting to be re-purposed.  What is your favorite use of a nook or cranny in your home? Pin It


  1. Clever! I'm ready for this kind of fresh vision in my house. We are trying out a table and stools in a kitchen corner. That's a favorite right now.

  2. My favorite is always bookshelves. My husband does woodworking/cabinetmaking and can fit shelves in anywhere we
    want. And not only book shelves but all kinds of custom sized
    storage the house, basement, garages, everywhere.
    Don't ever have to buy those wobbley put together yourself metal
    shelves. Yay.

  3. Chris and I were just talking about this...I asked to build me a wall unit with shelves, cabinets and a desktop in our eating area to use as our "office". He's thinking on it... ;)

  4. Great idea, I have a hall way straight through from the living room to the back bath room. Right now a tall dresser sit's in the narrow hall & that one area you cannot walk through. I plan on taking that section & making a closet big enough for all our clothes (top & bottom rods), & enough room for sweeper, little extra storage. My home was built in 1920 so the only room with a closet is my Son's. For now I'm using a wardrobe on wheel's in my room, lol. I'm going for simple framing, on either side using curtain rods & one curtain panel for each side. That way we can access the closet from either side of the hall. Staying with the era it wasn't unusual to have curtains in doorways, etc. :)

  5. Jane, where did you relocate your sewing area to?

    1. My machine and supplies are in the closet there (white door top photo). When I have a project, I pull everything out and use the narrow table.


Just a friendly reminder, if you know me personally please try to refrain from using my name. There are those who may try to locate me, break into my pantry and steal my pickled beets. Thanks:-).

Please choose the Anonymous option if you prefer not to sign in to comment.

Related Posts with Thumbnails