Home Organization 101: Week 2 “The Garage” (Season 3)

June 8, 2013

Home Organization 101 Season 3


Welcome back to Home Organization Season 3.  This week we are cleaning out the garage or shed.  The best way  that you can accomplish this is by emptying the entire space and starting from scratch.  I share 3 options below, for those who may not have the time to do this.  Pick the best option for you.  Don’t forget to share your finished space on our facebook group page here.  Happy Organizing!




Let me just start by saying that my garage has not always looked like this.  We used to have a LOT more stuff.  We saved things, “just in case” we needed them, (which we usually never did).  I finally got sick and tired of cleaning up junk and clutter. I had enough!  Once we moved into our dream home, I vowed not to hoard clutter anymore.  So we purged… and purged some more.  We got rid of a TON of stuff!  Then we got rid of some more.  Now we are at the point where we can finally manage what we own.  If you are not at the point where you can “manage” what you have, its time to purge!  This challenge is for you! This week will be the hardest week of all. If you can get through this one, the rest will be downhill from here.


Week #1 went perfect. So many of you shared your pictures, dilemmas, support, and questions on our Facebook Group page. Thank you for that!  Community is what makes events like this successful.


During week #2 we are headed into the dreaded garage!  If you are like me, this place gives you a headache just thinking about it. For some of you, this may be a task thats just too much to handle in one week.  Please don’t be discouraged.  Do what you can.  Attempting something is better than not trying at all, right?  I broke this week into 3 options.  Those of you who want to dive in head first will complete option #1.  Those of you who are hesitant, don’t have the time, or if its too much work for one week can choose option #2.  Option #3 is for those of you who do not have a garage or storage building.  Okay, thats it. Now its time to get organized! Good luck.


*Choose one.


OPTION #1 – The “Go getter”
For those of you who really want your garage organized and clean and are willing to get your hands dirty, this option is for you.  You will finish the task of completely organizing your garage with this process.  The local goodwill will become your best friend!!  The most important step in option #1 is to COMPLETELY empty the garage of all contents!


1.  Call your local charity organization to schedule an appointment for them to come with a truck and pick up your “junk”. Sometimes it takes a week for them to arrive.
2.  Make sure you have boxes, bins, etc… before you get started. You will need them. I purchased mine at Target.
3.  Line up your empty bins (in a row) in the driveway.
4.  Go through all of your junk, once piece at a time, organizing your stuff into categories (bins).
 (Sports, garden, tools, car maintenance, painting, pets, light bulbs, grilling, beach/pool, etc.)
5. Go through each item, emptying the garage… completely!
6. Make sure to place the items you no longer want or need into “donation” boxes.
7. Once you have sorted through your stuff, the garage should be empty. At this point you can sweep, blow (leaf blower), or hose down the floor (depending on how dirty your garage is). This is an important step!  You do not want to organize a dirty garage. During this step, if you have a problem with spiders or ants, you can spray the perimeter of your garage with insecticide.  Im not crazy about using insecticide, but living in South Carolina, its a MUST every 3 months.
8.  Place all of your neatly organized bins & boxes back into your garage (on shelves if you have them).
9. Label each bin with a labeler.
10. Hang things on wall hooks.  Try to keep everything off the ground. Spiders like to hide behind stuff on the ground & so does dust!
11. Pat yourself on the back. Your done!
*This process should be repeated at least twice a year (spring and fall), to keep things clean and organized.


OPTION #2 – The “tidy upper”
For those of you who just don’t have the time or energy to tackle such a huge task, the “tidy upper” option is for you. There’s no shame in choosing this option.  Doing something is better than doing nothing at all.  With this option, you will not empty your garage, but straighten things up a bit.  This task should only take you a couple of hours to complete. The biggest step in this process is getting rid of things you no longer need, to make space.  


1.  Collect boxes & bins. You will need them.
2.  Survey your garage. Do you see things that are not in there place? Put them back.
3.  Categorize things. Place like items together into bins.
4. Throw away any trash thats laying around.
5. Look for things you no longer need or want. Donate them.
6. Sweep the garage floor.


OPTION #3 – The thank goodness “I don’t have a garage” girl!
For anyone who does not have a garage or storage building, this option is for you.  You can either skip this week, or you can work on organizing your basement, attic, or car.  Tidy things up. Purge. Clean. You will be so happy you did!





Our garage is pretty simple.  Its not “decorated” fancy or anything. Its plain, organized and functional, which is how we like it. I park on this side.



The cupcake bucket on the right side has my 5 year olds sidewalk chalk in it. My husband parks on the left side.



This is our “bin” section.  We didn’t want to waste any space in the middle of the garage so we placed these shelves here. We keep EVERYTHING that goes into a bin, on these shelves. Everything is labeled and easily accessible.



We utilized our ceiling height (Its taller than it looks), with these Hyloft shelves.  We store seldom used items here such as the Christmas tree, etc…



Its always a good idea to hang the ladder. It takes up valuable space!



I purchased these garage storage hooks/units from Home Depot. They are “Husky”.



They hold everything from beach chairs to sporting equipment.




This basket sits right by my van. We live by the beach so whenever we want to go for the day, I just grab the boogie boards and put them in the trunk!



To hang our bikes, we use the “Monkey Bars” system.  I love this thing. Its so functional and easy to use. Below the bikes, we keep our generator, power washer, and carpet shampooer.  We also have our folding tables, saw horses and our corn hole.





I am a member of an organic produce home delivery service. I keep the box on top of my freezer and place it on the porch every Tuesday for a new box of goodness.



Below is my Freezer inventory checklist. I got this from Clean Mama printables on Etsy. You can visit her shop (here).  When I stock the freezer, I write in how many of each item I have. When I take something out, I minus it on the check list.  Love it! I take the list to the grocery store with me as well. It keeps me super organized.



Our Emergency Preparedness Station goes on the wall to the right of my mudroom door.  To learn how I put this together (step by step), visit my post here.


Emergency Preparedness Station - A Bowl Full of lemons


This door takes you to the mudroom in our home.



We keep on top of sports schedules with this chalkboard!




My recycle box is placed right by the mudroom door, so I can easily unload the recyclables form the kitchen.  We also have a cubby for shoes (if needed). We usually keep our shoes in our closets.



This shelf is right outside of our mudroom door.  I keep items we use often on here:
1. Extra food containers for school parties.
2. Packaging tape.
3. Sunglasses.
4. Grooming items.
5. Grilling items.
6. Coolers.
7. Empty bags.
8. Sunscreen.




Grooming supplies.









Coolers & empty bags.



 It’s baseball season here now so we like to keep stocked up on sports drinks.  On top of the mini fridge is a perfect place to store them for easy access.




This fridge holds our “on the go” drinks.  Its super easy to grab a drink on my way out, since I park my car in the garage.  We also keep our alcoholic drinks here.



The following pictures are more of a close up of our bins.  We keep everything that fits in them.










If you have any questions about our garage organization, dont hesitate to ask. Please ask your questions on the Group facebook page (here) so everyone can see them, and so I dont have to answer the same question multiple times. 🙂



A Bowl Full of Lemons


Happy Organizing!


21 comments on “Home Organization 101: Week 2 “The Garage” (Season 3)

  1. Jennifer says:

    This was great! Very useful information. This has given me motivation to work on my garage! Thanks!

  2. First of all, your home is beautiful. 🙂 I love how big your garage is, and I love how organized it is and easy to find stuff. You’ve given me a couple ideas. Our ladder seems to be all over the place in the garage with no permanent home, and it’s been driving me nuts. I think I’m going to look around for a good place to hang it. Thanks for the inspiration – I love your site!

  3. Korie says:

    So Awesome Toni! Love that you are starting this series again. Just wondering- where do you keep your regular trash cans??? I don’t have any shed or anything, so mine are kept in the garage… which I hate. Any advice??

  4. Korie says:

    Also- Any suggestions as to where to get affordable bins etc… these can get pretty pricey!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      I found bins at Big Lots (St. Louis, MO) that were very reasonable ($2 to $8) and I think they are the same ones as Toni used.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I would also like some ideas on where to get bins. I just got the bins and etc.for my kitchen project and it cost me $70 I love the garage ideas but can only imagine what the bins for everything will cost. Just out of curiosity what do you use grooming products in the garage for? Thanks! I love your site!!

  6. Leena says:

    How did you make your labels for the bins?

  7. Wow- your garage is so nicely organized! Would you recommend the Hyloft shelves? I could use some shelving for my home’s basement.

  8. tootie says:

    Love this post , an area not often thought about. Just glad the garage is my husbands domain and he is organized.

  9. Terri says:

    Love all your organizing ideas. My garage is horrible. I can’t wait to get it organized. My problem is I always think I am going to have a yard sale and want to have a place to put all my yard sale stuff. But I have so much stuff, it’s hard to find a place to put all the bins. Any suggestions??

  10. Stephanie says:

    Would you like to come make ours look like another room in our home? Right now I think I can’t even find the floor because of the dirt and leaves in there. I am looking forward to tidying it up a bit this week.
    Thank you!

  11. Jennifer says:

    What the brand/name of your label maker. I have one but your font is much much larger than mine, and I would love to have a bigger size font. Thanks!

  12. Angel says:

    Hi! I love your garage! There are so many great organizing ideas to be used. As soon as I settle on a paint color for my garage I definitely plan to put some to use:)

  13. Dorthea says:

    Hey there! This is the fourth time visiting now and I personally
    just wanted to say I truley fancy looking at your blogging site.
    I decided to bookmark it at digg.com with your title: Home Organization 101: Week 2
    “The Garage” (Season 3) | A Bowl Full of Lemons and your URL:
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  14. WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for

  15. Anonymous says:

    What kind of label making do you use. I want one that makes them that big.

  16. flor says:

    Im in love with your garage! IS THAT POSSIBLE?

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