Doesn't it seem like every home-owning-young-couple-about-to-have-a-baby converts their office into the nursery? Add us to the list. Our office is the smallest of the three bedrooms in our house, but it has the second-biggest closet (right behind the master bedroom closet), which means plenty of storage, so we (crossing fingers) shouldn't need too much more storage than the to-be-refinished dresser we bought over the weekend.
While I made no serious effort to decorate (or even paint) the office in the past four and a half years, knowing (and then eventually hoping) it would one day be the nursery, our office closet has been fully utilized the whole time we've lived here. As some preliminary nursery preparation, I took advantage of some of my travel-free and work-free time this week to start shuffling the items from the office closet to the smaller guestroom closet. Here's our starting point:
Bigger office closet (soon-to-be nursery closet):
Smaller guestroom closet:
The office closet housed photo albums, files, over-flow books that don't fit into our two bookcases, craft supplies, a container of gift wrap, a container of gift bags, my wedding dress, some sentimental items and a few miscellaneous items. The guestroom closet housed some dog supplies, some busted pillows the dogs have semi-destroyed over the years (that I may or not ever learn how to fix), board games, Matt's guitar, and two containers of my school files that I organized last summer and that temporarily are hanging out in there this summer until September.
I needed to find a way to get the contents of the office closet mostly contained within the smaller guestroom closet. This involved first sifting through all the contents of the office closet, which was kind of fun seeing as a lot of the items in there contain a lot of memories. I love finding old letters from long-time friends writing about their then-boyfriends now-husbands, or the funniest find so far: a postcard Matt sent me in 2001 when he was studying aboard in Spain, approximately two years before we started dating. Turns out I had a lot of loose letters and cards like that in several containers throughout the closet, so I consolidated and filed them in my special container for all-time-favorite cards.
Once virtually everything was consolidated and quite a few items were thrown out, it was time to start moving. The container of gift bags and the box containing my wedding dress fit nicely under the queen bed in the guestroom, and I figure our future guests won't be needing under-the-bed storage, so I stowed those items away to free up some space in the guestroom closet. I also found a couple items that make more sense housed in the garage, such as sporting goods, and a couple household items, such as tealight and votive candles, that make make more sense housed in the linen closet with other similar home equipment. Other than that, though, I needed to get everything else into the guestroom closet.
Although this is still a work in progress, here's the end result after about six hours of work spread over the course of two days:
Current office closet:
This photo emphasizes the improperly installed shelf on the left-hand side that we'll be fixing soon. I couldn't move everything quite yet as I still figure out some storage solutions for the closet shuffle, so here's what remains:
We've started to outgrow the accordion-file system I started to develop when we got married and then added to a year and a half ago. So, I'm currently on the lookout for an affordable two-drawer file cabinet (preferably made of wood) that could be housed at the bottom of the guestroom closet. Craigslist might be the best source for this, not surprisingly.
Also still hanging out in the office closet are these random items. I know I can easily fit most of this inside the guestroom closet, but I think it makes sense to get the file system squared away before attempting any further reorganizing. If you look closely, you'll notice that one of the items on the middle shelf is my Cabbage Patch Kids kindergarten backpack, which is the holding pen for my childhood keychain collection. Sentimental and unnecessary, right? Hmmmm...
Doc gives his seal of approval to the added floor space inside the office closet, a perfect dog hang out. (Note: This is Doc's happy face.)
So here's the current state of the guestroom closet:
On closer inspection, you'll see this shelf of mostly Stephanie and Matt memorabilia...
...our stack of board games. We love Taboo! (and I am horrible at Trivial Pursuit)...
...a stack of books temporarily arranged vertically that represents my recent past, present, and future...
It's nice to have made a serious dent in this closet shuffle project at this time when I don't have much else going on. Although I originally wouldn't have planned it this way, it kind of works out perfectly that I'm spending my summer in my second trimester, when I have the time and the energy to get some preparations done.