Happy New Year! This January I’m bringing you Tidy Tips, because I have found that simple home projects can make a big difference in our family’s day-to-day rhythms and routines.

Tip #13: Rethink bedside tables!

I have found that I can’t be trusted with a traditional bedside table that has drawers or cabinets, or it will quickly become a clutter trap. Instead, I’ve designed other creative solutions as simple landing places for items next to the beds in our apartment and at the cottage.

Sometimes to maintain tidiness, you have to get rid of furniture pieces that hide clutter. I have found that “out of sight, out of mind” is NOT a helpful tidy principle. Clear the clutter by eliminating clutter traps in your home.

Tidy Tip #12: Use wall hooks to add hanging storage!

We use little wall hooks throughout our home to add extra hanging storage. Today I added utility wall hooks by the bunk bed for rainbow unicorn robes. We also use them on my closet door for pajamas, next to the sink for washcloths, in the kitchen cabinet for pot holders, and next to the door for keys. Our favorite hooks come in various size packs, as small or 2-packs, or as big as 20-packs. There are so many uses for them, it’s fun to get creative!

Tidy Tip #11: Set up a system for kid clothes

It is important to organize and categorize kid clothes! We have 3 daughters who all have spring birthdays, so their seasons/sizes all overlap and we save a lot of hand-me-downs. We’ve had to develop a system for storing a few categories: 1) current clothes, 2) clothes that are for the upcoming sizes, 3) clothes that are too small.

All 3 girls share a bedroom. Their bedroom does not have any built-in closets, so we invested in a 3-wardrobe system. Each girl has their own wardrobe with accessible drawers and a low rod for their current size clothes. There are higher shelves with zippered storage bins for clothes that are for the upcoming sizes. This system helps to clearly define the space for how much room we have to store hand-me-downs. Clothes that are too small get moved into the next wardrobe for little sisters to wear, and stored in another zippered storage bin on a high shelf. And then when Margaret outgrows clothes they are ready to pass on from our home!

Tidy Tip #10: Tidy up your toys by choosing toys with 2+ purposes!

We installed a basic shelf with these sturdy brackets in our playroom, and the girls use it as a standing desk for imaginative play (doctor’s examining table, grocery store checkout area, etc). We also have 2 kid-size chairs to turn the shelves into a sitting area for play activities (coloring, learning activities, etc). We often bring out toys from our toy rotation closet and reset this space. We love finding toys with multiple purposes.

Here are a few of our favorites, that are fun to play with in multiple ways, and can be enjoyed by siblings with a range of ages!

Wooden Magnetic Stacker AND Carrot/Rabbit Rocket Play Set

200-Piece World Atlas Floor Puzzle AND Endangered Animal Figure Play Set

Wooden Pull Along Snail Toy AND Musical Instrument Drum/Xylophone

Tidy Tip #9: Store toys by category.

The 2 cabinets in the cottage under our custom floating shelves were overflowing with games and puzzles. The girls were beginning to have difficulty independently finding the items they wanted.

We emptied the cabinets and sorted everything into smaller categories. Now one cabinet holds adult games and the other cabinet holds kid board games. We also added a black cabinet to the side of the room, and filled it with puzzles. The 2 small drawers at the bottom of the cabinet hold an assortment of smaller card games.

It is so much easier to find a specific game/puzzle/toy when they are sorted into smaller categories. We routinely use this strategy to keep stock of our toy inventory within our home. One of our very best “tidying with kids” tips is to take time to go through your own inventory of toys.

Tidy Tip #8: Use the back of closet doors for vertical storage!

This closet in our front entryway (now playroom nook!) originally had only one high shelf and a hanging rod. We no longer needed the hanging rod for coats after I installed a DIY board and batten hook wall by the main entry door. So we removed the rod and installed 3 additional shelves to turn this former coat closet into a space that much better fits our storage needs.

Then we added a 6-tier over-the-door storage rack. It gives us so much space to store our favorite cleaning supplies! We also swapped the basic door knob for a key-lock door knob, so the girls can’t access the cleaning products. It’s a complete transformation!

Tidy Tip #7: Add turntables to your kitchen cabinets!

I have to admit that our baking supplies cabinet has been overflowing. We love to make homemade treats, and have accumulated quite a variety of flours, sugars, and sprinkles.

We use a turntable for our oils and vinegars in one cabinet. We just added another turntable in our baking supplies cabinet. It makes such a big difference when you can simply rotate and see everything!

I also added an extra spice gripper strip to the wall of the cabinet and hung our sprinkles! Now we’re ready for the next cake or cookie craving!

Tidy Tip #6: Do a 10-minute Tidy Reset before lunch and before dinner.

Our family has found that a 10-minute Tidy Reset before lunch helps us so much us in the afternoon. We set a timer and focus on one high impact area. We spend the majority our time in the living area, since that’s where school, play, and meals happen right now.

We have also found that tidying together before dinner is so much easier than after dinner when everyone is tired. We can transition the girls straight from dinner to bath, pajamas, and books, with the added benefit of not tidying up their stuff for them after they’re asleep.

This tidy rhythm helps us so much when we are all at home together all day, every day. But it can also be helpful in other situations, like quickly reseting your work office halfway through the day and then again at the end of the day, so things don’t pile up.

Tidy Tip #5: Use a toy rotation for small toy sets.

We store small toy sets in clear plastic containers in a closet, and rotate them for the girls. This helps keep the playroom area more clear for open-ended imaginative play, and keeps small toys off the floor since our littlest girl is now crawling. Also, when a small toy set comes out, it is fresh and exciting!

@rainbowplayco gifted us these colorful peg dolls and resin letters and numbers, and they have been a perfect addition to our toy rotation! We have the 1.5″ mini resin set of letters and numbers in “winter berry” and the 2″ peg doll set in “rainbow”. Use code TIDYDAD15 to save 15% when you order a set!

Tip Tip #4: Add a Tray to Every Room!

We use trays in almost every room of our cottage and apartment. They’re perfect by the door for wallets, in the living room for remotes, on the bathroom counter for toiletries, and our latest spot, at the base of the stairs for items that need to be carried up at the end of the day!

I found this discarded broken table (it was missing the top) on the sidewalk outside our apartment. I brought it back to life by dusting, cleaning, and polishing. I took a piece of glass from an old picture frame and placed it on top. It was a perfect fit! It also allows us to see the bones of the beautiful antique wood.

I placed a tray on top, along with a clear vase (each bought at Salvation Army last winter for $1 each) and a cutting from one of the trees in our yard. We set up the table/tray at the base of the stairs. It’s a perfect place to gather things that need to be taken upstairs, like hair clips, doll shoes, and my glasses.

Tidy Tip #3: Schedule time each week to meal plan & meal prep!

Tidy Tip: Meal Plan & Meal Prep

Emily and I usually set aside time to meal plan and meal prep for the upcoming week on the weekends. It makes it soo much easier for us to get healthy meals on the table for our family of 5 when we have a plan in advance. Here’s our typical meal plan & meal prep routine:

Tidy Tip #2: Create a “getting out the door” area!

Tidy Tip #2: Create a “getting out the door” area!

With 3 young kids, this is an area we frequently work on making more efficient! In our home, these items have helped us get organized for efficiency and ease getting out the door.

Tidy Tip #1: Organize your spices!

Tidy Tip #1: Organize your spices!

For this project, we started by gathering all of our spices, oils and vinegars. We sorted them all, and looked for ones that were expired or duplicates. We have used a few spice organization systems in the past, such as drawers or shelves, but this time we designated a specific cabinet and added spice gripper strips to the cabinet walls. We organized the spices alphabetically, and added a turntable for the oils and vinegars.

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This post contains affiliate links. We may make a small commission for purchases made through these links with no additional fee to the customer. We only link to products we use and love! Thank you for supporting our blog!

I'm Tyler Moore 

My wife and I live with our three young girls in a 700-square-foot apartment in New York City. I started Tidy Dad to help others tidy, simplify, and find joy in their lives. I firmly believe the tidying process can transform your life. I’d love for you to join me in exploring ways that tidying can make room for what’s important in life. 


January 3, 2021

January Tidy Tips

Happy New Year! This January I’m bringing you Tidy Tips, because I have found that simple home projects can make a big difference in our family’s day-to-day rhythms and routines.

Tip #13: Rethink bedside tables!

I have found that I can’t be trusted with a traditional bedside table that has drawers or cabinets, or it will quickly become a clutter trap. Instead, I’ve designed other creative solutions as simple landing places for items next to the beds in our apartment and at the cottage.

Sometimes to maintain tidiness, you have to get rid of furniture pieces that hide clutter. I have found that “out of sight, out of mind” is NOT a helpful tidy principle. Clear the clutter by eliminating clutter traps in your home.

Tidy Tip #12: Use wall hooks to add hanging storage!

We use little wall hooks throughout our home to add extra hanging storage. Today I added utility wall hooks by the bunk bed for rainbow unicorn robes. We also use them on my closet door for pajamas, next to the sink for washcloths, in the kitchen cabinet for pot holders, and next to the door for keys. Our favorite hooks come in various size packs, as small or 2-packs, or as big as 20-packs. There are so many uses for them, it’s fun to get creative!

Tidy Tip #11: Set up a system for kid clothes

It is important to organize and categorize kid clothes! We have 3 daughters who all have spring birthdays, so their seasons/sizes all overlap and we save a lot of hand-me-downs. We’ve had to develop a system for storing a few categories: 1) current clothes, 2) clothes that are for the upcoming sizes, 3) clothes that are too small.

All 3 girls share a bedroom. Their bedroom does not have any built-in closets, so we invested in a 3-wardrobe system. Each girl has their own wardrobe with accessible drawers and a low rod for their current size clothes. There are higher shelves with zippered storage bins for clothes that are for the upcoming sizes. This system helps to clearly define the space for how much room we have to store hand-me-downs. Clothes that are too small get moved into the next wardrobe for little sisters to wear, and stored in another zippered storage bin on a high shelf. And then when Margaret outgrows clothes they are ready to pass on from our home!

Tidy Tip #10: Tidy up your toys by choosing toys with 2+ purposes!

We installed a basic shelf with these sturdy brackets in our playroom, and the girls use it as a standing desk for imaginative play (doctor’s examining table, grocery store checkout area, etc). We also have 2 kid-size chairs to turn the shelves into a sitting area for play activities (coloring, learning activities, etc). We often bring out toys from our toy rotation closet and reset this space. We love finding toys with multiple purposes.

Here are a few of our favorites, that are fun to play with in multiple ways, and can be enjoyed by siblings with a range of ages!

Wooden Magnetic Stacker AND Carrot/Rabbit Rocket Play Set

200-Piece World Atlas Floor Puzzle AND Endangered Animal Figure Play Set

Wooden Pull Along Snail Toy AND Musical Instrument Drum/Xylophone

Tidy Tip #9: Store toys by category.

The 2 cabinets in the cottage under our custom floating shelves were overflowing with games and puzzles. The girls were beginning to have difficulty independently finding the items they wanted.

We emptied the cabinets and sorted everything into smaller categories. Now one cabinet holds adult games and the other cabinet holds kid board games. We also added a black cabinet to the side of the room, and filled it with puzzles. The 2 small drawers at the bottom of the cabinet hold an assortment of smaller card games.

It is so much easier to find a specific game/puzzle/toy when they are sorted into smaller categories. We routinely use this strategy to keep stock of our toy inventory within our home. One of our very best “tidying with kids” tips is to take time to go through your own inventory of toys.

Tidy Tip #8: Use the back of closet doors for vertical storage!

This closet in our front entryway (now playroom nook!) originally had only one high shelf and a hanging rod. We no longer needed the hanging rod for coats after I installed a DIY board and batten hook wall by the main entry door. So we removed the rod and installed 3 additional shelves to turn this former coat closet into a space that much better fits our storage needs.

Then we added a 6-tier over-the-door storage rack. It gives us so much space to store our favorite cleaning supplies! We also swapped the basic door knob for a key-lock door knob, so the girls can’t access the cleaning products. It’s a complete transformation!

Tidy Tip #7: Add turntables to your kitchen cabinets!

I have to admit that our baking supplies cabinet has been overflowing. We love to make homemade treats, and have accumulated quite a variety of flours, sugars, and sprinkles.

We use a turntable for our oils and vinegars in one cabinet. We just added another turntable in our baking supplies cabinet. It makes such a big difference when you can simply rotate and see everything!

I also added an extra spice gripper strip to the wall of the cabinet and hung our sprinkles! Now we’re ready for the next cake or cookie craving!

Tidy Tip #6: Do a 10-minute Tidy Reset before lunch and before dinner.

Our family has found that a 10-minute Tidy Reset before lunch helps us so much us in the afternoon. We set a timer and focus on one high impact area. We spend the majority our time in the living area, since that’s where school, play, and meals happen right now.

We have also found that tidying together before dinner is so much easier than after dinner when everyone is tired. We can transition the girls straight from dinner to bath, pajamas, and books, with the added benefit of not tidying up their stuff for them after they’re asleep.

This tidy rhythm helps us so much when we are all at home together all day, every day. But it can also be helpful in other situations, like quickly reseting your work office halfway through the day and then again at the end of the day, so things don’t pile up.

Tidy Tip #5: Use a toy rotation for small toy sets.

We store small toy sets in clear plastic containers in a closet, and rotate them for the girls. This helps keep the playroom area more clear for open-ended imaginative play, and keeps small toys off the floor since our littlest girl is now crawling. Also, when a small toy set comes out, it is fresh and exciting!

@rainbowplayco gifted us these colorful peg dolls and resin letters and numbers, and they have been a perfect addition to our toy rotation! We have the 1.5″ mini resin set of letters and numbers in “winter berry” and the 2″ peg doll set in “rainbow”. Use code TIDYDAD15 to save 15% when you order a set!

Tip Tip #4: Add a Tray to Every Room!

We use trays in almost every room of our cottage and apartment. They’re perfect by the door for wallets, in the living room for remotes, on the bathroom counter for toiletries, and our latest spot, at the base of the stairs for items that need to be carried up at the end of the day!

I found this discarded broken table (it was missing the top) on the sidewalk outside our apartment. I brought it back to life by dusting, cleaning, and polishing. I took a piece of glass from an old picture frame and placed it on top. It was a perfect fit! It also allows us to see the bones of the beautiful antique wood.

I placed a tray on top, along with a clear vase (each bought at Salvation Army last winter for $1 each) and a cutting from one of the trees in our yard. We set up the table/tray at the base of the stairs. It’s a perfect place to gather things that need to be taken upstairs, like hair clips, doll shoes, and my glasses.

Tidy Tip #3: Schedule time each week to meal plan & meal prep!

Tidy Tip: Meal Plan & Meal Prep

Emily and I usually set aside time to meal plan and meal prep for the upcoming week on the weekends. It makes it soo much easier for us to get healthy meals on the table for our family of 5 when we have a plan in advance. Here’s our typical meal plan & meal prep routine:

Tidy Tip #2: Create a “getting out the door” area!

Tidy Tip #2: Create a “getting out the door” area!

With 3 young kids, this is an area we frequently work on making more efficient! In our home, these items have helped us get organized for efficiency and ease getting out the door.

Tidy Tip #1: Organize your spices!

Tidy Tip #1: Organize your spices!

For this project, we started by gathering all of our spices, oils and vinegars. We sorted them all, and looked for ones that were expired or duplicates. We have used a few spice organization systems in the past, such as drawers or shelves, but this time we designated a specific cabinet and added spice gripper strips to the cabinet walls. We organized the spices alphabetically, and added a turntable for the oils and vinegars.

Thanks for pinning!

for pinterest

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a small commission for purchases made through these links with no additional fee to the customer. We only link to products we use and love! Thank you for supporting our blog!

January 3, 2021

January Tidy Tips

About me

Hi, my name is Tyler Moore. My wife and I live with our three young daughters in a 700- square-foot apartment in New York City. I began my tidying journey when an early-30’s crisis invited me to reflect upon, challenge, and change my patterns of daily living. I quit my job as a school administrator, returned to teaching, and started Tidy Dad to help others tidy, simplify, and find joy in their lives. I firmly believe the tidying process can transform your life. I’d love for you to join me in exploring ways that tidying can make room for what’s important in life. 


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