Wednesday, April 4, 2012

My Predicament

in running a house with a slightly larger than normal family.

I got it.
Each child has a hangar thingy bobber in their closet that holds a uniform for each day of the school week and a clean pair of socks for that day.

It works.
It works well.

I load it up on Sunday afternoons
and then as I do laundry throughout the week I load it back up.
Our mornings are blissfully un-eventful in the clothing department.

But shoes.
Oh the shoes.
There are 9 people living here.
Each person has one pair of tennis shoes
and one pair of sandals/crocks/or flippy flops.

Let's break that down shall we?
Yes I think we shall.

9 X 2 pairs of shoes = 18 pairs.
Add in 7 pairs of baseball cleats:
18 + 7 = 25
Add in a pair or two or five of extra flip flops for me
cuz I'm the only girl
and I like to wear things that don't resemble dirt like the rest of these fools I live with
25 + 4 = 29.

What does one do with nearly 30 pairs of shoes.

Here's what I do now:

This is the basket by the back door where the tennis shoes/everyday shoes {and apparently the catchers mask} go.

This is the back patio.
Theoretically, this is where the remainder of the shoes belong.
Don't laugh.
I didn't even try and clean this up for before I took these pictures....
that's how much I like you.


Help me Rhonda.

I bought that little shoe benchy thingy awhile ago but I have officially decided my kids are thoroughly untrainable.
They cannot
for. the. life. of. them.
put their crocs/kleats/whatever else in the little holes.

So here's what I need.
I need help.
What to do?
What to do?

This is me begging.
Puhhhhhllleeeeees give me shoe wisdom.


  1. Heehee, I have no help except we have a giant basket by the front door. DH wears size 16! and then we have two dwarfs with teeny shoes - can't find anything! BUT last night I was trying to figure out the clothes! THanks for the help!

  2. Tell them that the idea of the shoe benchy thingy is to HOLD the shoes. Shoes placed in their designated spot in the shoe benchy thingy will be found in their designated place. Shoes left elsewhere will be confiscated by the one who wears "things that aren't dirt". In order to get those shoes back they will have to do a job for the pretty shoe wearing girl. No exceptions. (If they are on their way out the door, the job will be there when they get back). If the teenagers would rather pay a fine than do a job to get their shoes outa hock--then set the price! Shoes be gone! Maybe a smaller version of the shoe benchy thingy to replace the basket for the "indoor" shoes?

  3. I get it. In this traditional "Asian" house full of boys we leave our shoes at the back door in the garage. Wire rack shelves are there for stacking shoes cause I gave up on the shoe cubby idea. And forget digging in a deep basket of stinky shoes to find the missing mate to the must have pair. Ya know?! Wire racks baby. All the way. And the older boys who want allowance ... well sorting and stacking those shoes that might occasionally get thrown onto the racks ... well they keep em organized as part of their chores. Now I am off to look for some of those cool closet hanger thingy ma-babers.

  4. Let it go girlfriend....but I'll be checking back in on your brilliance. 'Cause if anyone can find a way, it'll be you...

  5. You should know just how committed I am to try posting again. My amazing, long, idea-filled comment from my first attempt was blown away into cyber space. So, I am trying again. There never was a truer friend. Ahem... You need a shelf with enough tiers so everyone in your family has a shelf...9. Put it by the door that gets the most in-out traffic. My friend here has hers in the garage by the door into the house. I have one right inside the door into the house. Each person has their own shelf. When their shelf is filled with their shoes the ones that don't fit go up to the closet. Or you could just get one large enough to hold all 25+ pairs of shoes. Missy

  6. We are about to bring home FOUR more, and I am watching this post like a hawk. I need HELP!! Currently, our shoes are in a big pile in the laundry room. It stinks. Literally.

  7. ohhh Sonia - I was just re-thinking our shoe storage too! It's driving me nuts! Each of our kids have a shoe bin - but every morning I hear "I can't find my shoes" - well, maybe because you just threw them in there and now they are in someone elses bucket. Aaarrrrgggghhhh!!!! Can't wait to hear what else you come up with!

  8. I have four little's (7 and under) my DH made be a rolling box, it has three compartments, a second with two compartments, they roll under a bench, that he also made, but I I have seen similar for sale. Each child has a "box" where their shoes go, sometimes they miss and it is lost in someone else s box, but mostly it works very well. We use to have shelves with fabric boxes and that did not work as well. They can take them off and put them in with no problems and roll the box under when they are done. Still working on the digging out the pair you want thing, but that is really on an issue with my two and three year old not your issue. I personally do not like the individual boxes for each pair because when it is so low it is had to tell what exact pair is in there until you pull them out, and I know with three boys they have similar shoes, so I am positive you have that issue as well. Just my two sense, love following your adventures. Kristi

  9. All of our shoes, minus dirty play shoes, stay in the closets in the bedrooms on a floor rack. Bring them out when you need them. Play shoes are in a drawer in the garage. If I have to put my kids' stuff away, they pay me based on their allowance. I'm not their maid, but they can pay for one (me) if they choose not to put their stuff away. Mean...maybe...but they sure do put their shoes away now!

  10. Sonia, there are only two of us - Bella refuses to wear shoes! Ours are scattered from the inside kitchen to the outside steps to the three closets in the house. Like one of your friends said, if you can find a system, you can. I must tell you, Grandpa John is a shoe hog.

  11. This is of no help.... But I wonder what the Dugger family does?? Probably have a room with nothing but shoe cubbies? My solution is surf the IKEA web catalogue!?? I saw a wall unit that has large cubbies that medium sized baskets can be put in? No idea the space you would need for it?

  12. 30 pairs of shoes! Embarassingly, I gave away more than that during spring cleaning:( I'm sorry, but my daughter and I have shoe fetishes.
    But I am amazed at your idea for the uniforms!

  13. What kind of storage space do the little peeps have at school? Like to put backpacks or something. Maybe if you used something that resembled what they already do at school it would help with the process. I know they should be able to put their shoes away, but when you have one process by the front door, another process by the back door, and then a whole nother process at school it can get overwhelming for these little dudes & even the big dudes. So basically try to make all storage solutions similar, so the expectations are the same throughout the house & at school. Then enters allowance with-holding, or taking away of fun things! While I agree that taking a portion of their allowance if you have to clean it up is reasonable, you don't want to be in charge of the shoes or you wouldn't have the shoe storage solution you don't want them to become dependent on them paying you to do it either! Miss you like crazy!!

  14. PS for all the other peeps. My friend has a 5 year old fashion diva and there were screaming fights every morning before school, since there is no uniform where we live. Said mom initiated the cubbies like Sonia has in her closet & on the weekend or laundry day little diva & mommy would decide what clothes would be worn for the week. No arguments from the little one now. She grabs her outfit for the day & gets dressed no problem. There is also no fighting during the weekly planning process because little one is part of the process. This is not a prevalent issues with those that have a kagillion boys, but girls & clothes are something special!!

  15. Hang a fabric shoe holder over the door. You can fit 2 shoes in each pocket. Or FIVE Girly FlipFlops! If you have a closet door nearby, hang one on each side of the door.

  16. We have a tote inside out coat closet on the floor that all the shoes go in.... We may only have 7 people in out home but there is way more than 30 pair of shoes in there..... we have all girls so we all have like 5 pair of flip flops not to mention church shoes etc.... it works quite well if you have the room

  17. Maybe a bigger rack, like from Sam's Club

    that has wire shelves (I have boys too and their shoes ALWAYS stink!) that you could leave outside so they could air out. Then grab some cheap lined baskets from anywhere that you could store the flip flops in. You can also find a bar to hang from the top so you can hang coats and other stuff that live around the shoes...gloves, hats, uniforms!

    We are soooo classy that we have one of these in our master bedroom that has our TV on top and pants storage under it. We took the extra shelves and use them on the second one we bought that lives in our basement with powertools and such on it.

  18. Oh I could not love your blog more! Thanks for making me laugh. We have a canvas shoe pocket thingy from Target that hangs over our laundry room door. It works well. Everyone has to put their "crocs in the pocks". However, I estimate that you would need 4.5 canvas shoe pocket thingys for your home. :o)

  19. We have the canvas shoe pocket things that work great for our two little girlies from China - but my son never would have managed putting his shoes in it! Feet were always big - even as a child. We went for the most simple. Extra carpet squares lined up under his dresser - then line the shoes, toes under dresser along the edge. They were out of the way but easily accessible. Wet/dirty shoes stayed outside, lined on a shelf. Worked great for him - he still does this at 20 so I call it success!!

  20. I haven't taken the time to read through all of the above comments and I know you have some really smart friends so your predicament may be solved by now. But we charge money for shoes not put away. And siblings who put away other siblings' shoes receive the payment if mom and dad didn't get to the misplaced shoes first.