Diary of a Scrapbook Room Makeover: Part One

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Okay, time for Part One of hopefully many posts in my scraproom makeover diary. You can read the Prologue HERE about why I was skerred to write about this in the first place…

I suppose I should start by explaining my current scrap space situation, and why it was time for such a major “makeover.” For about 6 or 7 years now, my scrap space has been shared with my kids’ play room, which consists of the majority of their toys, games, and puzzles, a TV with VCR and DVD player for watching movies, and a couch. The couch is perpendicular to the wall and kind of splits the room in half. Behind the couch is where my scrap space is. I have a large, L-shaped office desk and matching file cabinet, a table, and 10.5 STORE IN STYLE cubes like this….

…mostly open cubes but a few with doors or drawers. Then I have 2 of the 4 sets of shelves along the wall (some of my books [yeah, the other thing I hoard] and the kids’ stuff is in the other 2), and various Iris carts, containers, and mish-mosh storage items. I also hide a lot under my mondo-desk (wink).

As you can imagine, this was already a lot of stuff and two busy purposes to fit into one room, even though it’s good-sized. I have always liked sharing my space with the play room because the kids and I hang out in there a lot together. Or at least we did, until it also became “the dumping ground room.” That was not supposed to be the plan, LOL! Look, I’m a busy mom. Due to this stupid economy, I’ve been working 50-60 hours a week. The kids do sports, I do Bible study, I sell Memory Works, clean, do constant laundry, take care of a puppy, blah, blah, blah. Not making excuses, just explaining how this all got out of hand. I simply haven’t had time to focus on an organized home, as I can barely function on the 4-5 hours a sleep I get per night as it is. So anytime something new enters the house and I don’t have time to make room for it in a closet, or get rid of something else to make room for it, it gets dumped in the scrap room/play room. Ugh. (Hint, I’m preparing you for the photos so you don’t go into a horrible shock).

Here’s my other problem…I’m an admitted pack rat. I’m trying to reform and I certainly don’t want an intervention by my family, so I’m always working on it and fighting it. I get occasional bursts of energy where I purge the pantry, clean out my bookshelves, fill garbage bags with old clothes, etc. But admittedly, things have gotten out of hand in the last year or so. Well, I’m plenty sick of it and it’s time to make it right. Other than the sheer clutter, one thing that really bugs me and has to change is that the kids play area has to be moved. You have to walk through their area to get to mine, and to get to the sliding glass door to the backyard. No matter how much I nag, a fact of life is that they WILL leave toys, books, puzzles, etc. on the playroom floor…right in the path to those two places. And it’s their play area, ya know? They should be ABLE to leave out projects they’re working on, Monopoly games in progress, or art work interrupted, right? I’m just tired of stubbing my toes on all of it. If I step on that little shoe from Monopoly in my bare feet one more time…why I oughta!…..

So I had the bright idea to not only purge and re-organize my scrap space, but to move their play space to the guest room. We’ll move their toys and games, and get rid of some along the way, too :) Their TV and movies can also be moved, which will at the same time provide a TV in the guest room for my mom to watch when she comes to stay with us. This is a semi-tangent…but the way it is now, their playroom TV is about 15 feet away from the living room TV, so when the grownups are trying to watch something, we’re often competing with the kids’ TV. It’s kind of funny, the battle of the dueling remotes…we can’t hear, so we turn up our volume. Then they can’t hear, so their TV goes louder, and before you know it, the house is very LOUD. Now their TV will be farther away and behind a door, so we can now watch R-movies with “the language” and not constantly have to push mute for fear they’ll overhear, and they can watch SpongeBob and his annoying, nasally laugh to their heart’s content, LOL. By the way, I {heart} Patrick….

So. Decided. Playroom stuff moving to guest room. which means that my scrap space has room to expand and breathe. However, as much as I want the kids to have their own place where they can shut the door and watch a movie, or be able to spread out with their games, I also want them to still “need” to be in my scrap area sometimes so we can spend time together. And wouldn’t it be nice to have somewhere else for them to do homework, etc. other than the nice, oak dining room table? Why, yes. Yes, it would! That’s why I’m going to repurpose my scrap table into a Homework Table for the kids, and keep it in my scrap room. They’ll still have a place and purpose in my area, which is really cool. Also, I’ll still have the couch in my scrap room (erm….the cleaned off, easy-to-lie-down-on couch…) so they can come and chill, read a book, tell me about their day, whatevs.

I think I’ll utilize what used to be the DVD/game cabinet (see pic below) to store office supplies, etc. and free up more room in the guest room, where all that stuff currently resides. I used to keep this kind of stuff in a cabinet in there, which will now house the TV and games. Make sense? Just a straight swapperoo!

Being the anal, plan-ahead, worrier type that I am, my wheels are turning about what furniture to move where and how to store what. I pull out some graph paper and draw a diagram for my “new” scrap room. See, I’ve always had to call it a “scrap space” before, but now I can say “scrap room.” Yeah! There are two things I need to work around initially. The sliding door to the backyard means I have to keep a decent walkway available in that area of the room. Also, there are four 5-shelf cheap-o bookcases lining one wall and they need to stay put. They’re mounted to the wall with brackets, as we’re in earthquake country, and I’m not in the mood to unmount and remount those stinkin’ shelves. Besides, this room has a vaulted ceiling and the shelves are on “the tall wall,” also a long, solid wall, so that’s the logical place for them anyway. The best part about the shelves is that by moving the toys and stuff off of them, I’m gaining almost a whole shelf unit for my scrappy stuff….niiiiice. I’m going to move some of my books out of the guest room, and make one whole set of shelves for my books, too.

After 2 tries, I come up with a good room diagram for how want to arrange things. Now, I can drift off to sleep, and dream about someday scrapping in a more open and organized space….Oh, wait, I can’t sleep yet. I have one more thing to do and I can’t procrastinate any longer…

I guess now it’s time for the thoroughly embarrassing photos. I needed DH to move the TV for me when he had a moment, so that’s the only thing missing from the original (highly cringe-worthy) status of this room. Gulp! Here you go…

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This is the wall to your hard left as you enter the play room area through the open doorway from the dining/living rooms. You can see the slider I’m talking about to the far right. The TV sat on top of that oak cabinet, and it’s filled with games and DVDs. All those pieces of stacked wood are to construct the hutch that goes with my desk, but I decided not to use it after all, so all those pieces are going in the attic. Those old toys are trash and we’ll see if we can use the plastic baskets for toy storage or something, or maybe to hold outdoor toys in the garage?

As you will see, this is the room to dump plastic containers that have rotated out of use. And I don’t know if you can see them, but behind the hutch pieces and then leaning toward the door frame, there are pool cues. Yes, pool cues. Growing up, my grandparents had a pool table in their rumpus room. Every time we’d visit them, all the kids would play pool. When my grandpa, then grandma, passed away, my mom asked what I wanted from them to keep I chose were the pool cues, among some other things. We had a pool table at the time (in this room, in fact) and I wanted to remember my wonderful grandparents and how much fun I had at their home whenever WE played pool. So, even though I have no practical use for pool cues now, I haven’t been able to get rid of them. I have such a hard time letting go of sentimental things like this. But I will. I’ve decided to take photos of them, and scrap this little story about them….and let them go. See? I’m learning…. Okay, time for another upsetting photo…

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This actually disgusts me to look at, how ugly and horrible this room is. Here’s the couch we can no longer sit on, because things just get dumped here: A box of wedding china, a globe, boxes of toys given to us, pictures that need to be hung, a box of sentimental baby items I want to keep, newspaper with an article to scrapbook, a DVD to put away, another empty plastic bin, an empty Memory Works box to break down and recycle, etc. Behind the couch is my L-shaped desk with an over-full ScrapRack (major purging will happen there!). Man, don’t be surprised if I delete these photos from the post when I panic…this is TOO embarrassing!

Okay, deep breaths, deep breaths! It’s going to get all better, with time, hard work, and patience. Someday soon, I’ll look back at these photos and laugh. Right?

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9 Comments on Diary of a Scrapbook Room Makeover: Part One

  1. Julie Howard
    September 23, 2009 at 2:06 am (5 years ago)

    Erika, I think you are off to a FABULOUS start!! I TOTALLY understand your wanting to cringe.. I have spaces just like that too that I don’t want anyone to see either! {Why does everything have to go on MOM’s desk?? Truly, is there NOWHERE ELSE it can go?!}

    Can’t wait to see more pictures, especially once you start putting the scrappy space back together!

    Reply
  2. Sherlu
    September 23, 2009 at 11:03 am (5 years ago)

    Thanks for the inspiration. I like your idea of taking pictures of the pool cues and scrapping the story but how about mounting them on the wall as a decoration.

    Keep up the good work and keep blogging. Love to read what you are up to.

    Reply
  3. djp
    September 23, 2009 at 5:35 pm (5 years ago)

    great post! i hope you’re breathing easier…i feel that the post was all one sentence in one big’ole breath! Way to go E….putting it all out there….only up from here!

    Reply
  4. Jenn A.
    September 24, 2009 at 4:59 pm (5 years ago)

    I can’t wait to see what it looks like once you get to spread out and have a little breathing room! My scrap room is definitely the dumping ground, too-I can see the piles forming now. I swear they grow when we are both gone at work, haha!

    Good luck digging out and finding your fab new space!!!

    Reply
  5. susan
    September 27, 2009 at 7:06 am (5 years ago)

    Your post is great! Keep the pictures coming. I love to see a work in progress, can’t wait to see the results!

    Reply
  6. Prairie Girl
    September 27, 2009 at 10:08 am (5 years ago)

    Please keep the pictures! I totally understand that it’s a work in progress and it takes courage to share our ‘dark’ secrets!!! AND you are definitely *not* alone! I think sharing your pics and your challenges is part of the process and hopefully you’ll feel some of the weight lifted off of your shoulders. We all need to start somewhere! Don’t give up! =)

    Reply
  7. Elle Robb
    September 30, 2009 at 8:42 am (5 years ago)

    I am so excited that I found your blog! I am in the process of making over my scrap room/home office (I’m a writer) and I’m anxious to watch your progress! Great job with the blog.

    Reply
  8. Jenny McGee
    October 8, 2009 at 12:38 pm (5 years ago)

    Good Luck with your transformation.

    Reply
  9. Kimberly
    October 29, 2009 at 10:57 pm (5 years ago)

    Thanks for posting your pictures. I am currently working on creating a scrap room of my own. I’m fortunate that I have a large area to work with. I’m new to scrapbooking and am working on how to best use the space I have. I have a one year old son and plan on having another baby. I decided to buy a large Ikea galant table and I put four chairs around it. The table height is adjustable as well. I was thinking that I could use it as a scrapbook table and my kids can use the table to color, do puzzles, crafts, etc as well. I also have room for a computer desk and my son’s thomas the train table in my “scrap room”. My theory is that if my son can play and keep busy that I’ll have time to scrapbook while he plays. I enjoyed reading your blog, do you think my idea for my room makes sense?

    Reply

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