And, Hopefully, A Smile On Your Face

Children's toothbrushes next to the kitchen sink.

Children’s toothbrushes next to the kitchen sink.

Old Friends

Last night we were pleasantly surprised with a visit from an old law school buddy of my husband’s, his wife and their 2 sons, ages 9 and 6. They had just gone on a drive and ended up in our town. He apparently said, “Hey I went to school with a guy from here 16 years ago. Let’s call him up.” So they came over. We had some gourmet pizza and good red wine and we talked them into spending the night instead of the 2 hour drive home.  You’re saying “what the heck does this have to do with toothbrushes?”  Well, listen up.

It All Revolves Around The Kitchen Sink

At one point we were standing in the kitchen and the Dad noticed our children’s toothbrushes on a shelf by the kitchen sink and thought it was a novel idea. (versus in the bathroom) We talked about this and other time-saving techniques we have incorporated into our daily routines and he suggested we create a website with this information. So to that I said, “Well, as a matter of fact…”

New Ideas

Anyway, after seeing that this was a new idea to him, I thought I would just throw out a few things we do to get out the door quicker, easier and with the least stress on Mom and Dad. Something I strive for constantly. Now that we have 4 children, it has just become essential that we streamline daily requirements of simply keeping people fed, dressed, clean and on the way to being a productive member of society.

So Here Are The Basics:

1) Children’s toothbrushes and toothpaste are right next to the kitchen sink. It is one of Emma’s, 11, morning chores to lay them out with toothpaste on them. I like this because I can see if they brush or not.

2) Hair brushes and rubber bands are in a cabinet in the kitchen.  Again, its one of the last things I check before we leave the house and everything we need is right there.  We also keep  paper diapers in this kitchen cabinet.  (I get sick of saying “disposable” so we say paper.)  These are for leaving the house.  We use cloth diapers at home.  I know.  It sounds crazy, but I secretly love it.  Very strange.  I’m going to devote a post to that subject.

I love a half empty drawer or cabinet or at least not stuffed!

I love a half empty drawer or cabinet or at least not stuffed!

3) Children’s socks are in the pantry and all of their shoes (and coats) are in the mudroom by the back door. All of the socks are in one basket and they just have to pick through it to find what they need. The socks are all white and pretty much interchangable (in a pinch) except for our 2 year old’s.

Socks near the mudroom and the back door.

Socks near the mudroom and the back door.

Shoes, coats, gloves, hats, and a mirror by the back door.

Shoes, coats, gloves, hats, and a mirror by the back door.

As we are walking out the door, these are the main issues that are a concern to me. Are your teeth brushed? Is your hair a mess? Do you have socks and where are your shoes? Do we have a diaper bag with diapers actually in it.   And if Dad finds shoes laying about, the children will likely find them in the freezer. It’s a great reminder.

Hmmm. Nice. Right on the frozen fruit and vegies.

Hmmm. Nice. Right on the frozen fruit and vegies.

Once again, we are always practicing these things, but this plan, after trying many, has worked the best so far. Find the easy way out so you can spend more time doing the fun stuff!

God Bless You!


  1. Gina Chase says:

    Shoes in the freezer? That is so funny. It sounds like something he would do.

  2. This cracks me up. I laughed out loud. We keep a loaded diaper bag in the van. Really helps. Shoes under boys bed and girls bed in a flat box. Toothbrushes, I haven’t tried your idea because I have 3 shorter than the height of the sink. But I’m going to ponder that and see what I come up with. Your “orange-ness” really comes out in your blog. Like it. :)

  3. Allison says:

    Their buddy can just hand them the toothbrush!

  4. Corie says:

    I like the freezer idea! Think I’m going to try that with Benjamin’s underwear next time I find them in the middle of the living room floor! Also love the shoes by the door. We do the same thing. Our shelves are longer, though, and each member of the family has their own shelf. I am ashamed to say, I am probably the most guilty of not putting my shoes on the shelf, but I usually have Will in my arms!

  5. Allison says:

    Actually our shelf is only for the children, though I usually have my mud boots there. And its funny, me leaving my shoes about has been one of my husbands pet peeves. But I think Im getting better at it. : )

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