Monday, March 31, 2014

"Wow! You're a Big Family!" Controlling the Chaos Tidbit #8-The Bathroom

The bathroom:  toothpaste in the sink, water drops on the mirror, and a toilet that well, looks and smells like two little boys use it.  I won't kid myself and say that my bathroom is clean for longer than maybe the ten minutes right after I have cleaned it.  But I do have a few tricks that help keep the messes down.

1.  Color coded poofs instead of washclothes
My kids do still use washcloths in the morning when they wash their faces but for bathtime, they each have a poof.  I hated finding soggy washclothes mildewing at the bottom of the bathtub.  (Okay maybe not mildewing but a sopping wet washcloth that sits in the tub for a day or so just grosses me out.)  And I hated that the kids couldn't figure out how to wring out a washcloth without making a mess.  So I bought each kid a poof that was the same color as their cup.  (See my post on breakfast.)  A few suction cup hooks on the tub surround and no more wet washclothes.

2.  Caddies for each kid
The boys currently share a caddy but that's because the caddies I have are made with two sections so they might as well share.  The kids put their personal supplies (toothbrush, toothpaste, and hair brushes) in each caddy and it sits on the counter.
These metal caddies are the ones my kids use.  I actually got several of them quite a few years ago when I was teaching full time.   They were Dollar General finds so they were really cheap.

3.  Travel size toothpaste
I think I have finally figured out how to solve the "my children are geniuses, but why on earth can they not squeeze toothpaste out of a tube correctly?" problem.  Travel size toothpastes.  For some reason, they are easier to squeeze than a large size tube and my kids don't goop toothpaste all over the tube and they seem to do better with getting the right amount on their toothbrush which helps with the big globs of toothpaste that end up in the sink and on the counter.  It's not the most budget friendly thing but if you can score a bunch of samples from the dentist or from hotel stays, it helps.  I just give each kid their own tube so I don't have to replace them so often.

4.  Over the door shoe organizers
This is probably my new favorite organizing trick.  I don't have a ton of storage in our bathroom.  The vanity is actually pretty spacious but it only has two drawers and the bottom is just a big open space that kind of turns into an abyss where toilet paper and the plunger go to get forgotten about.  So I grabbed a cheap shoe organizer and used it for all my extra bathroom supplies (like extra razors, extra shampoo, etc.).  It's easy to see what you have and they don't get lost to the abyss.
The only thing I don't love about this is that sometimes it gets kind of heavy and can "thump" against the door.
I think if I used some Command adhesive strips along the edges, I could secure it to the door and prevent the thumping but I've been too lazy to do that. 

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