BEFORE AND AFTER: Family Command Center

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I can happily and finally say that my command center is essentially finished!  After months of agonizing about this and that, and a handful of mistakes along the way, this little nook finally came together.  Oh, there are still some loose ends (like my lopsided mail pail; I dug for envelopes there, and have yet to put double sided tape), but now I can do a happy dance every time I see our Family Command Center.

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And unlike the School Station (which I built from scratch), that Ikea wooden ledge (or standing desk?) came with the house and was something I had to work with, so I have “before” and “after” photos to document this organizational/decorating journey.  Here is the whole process – the evolution of my command center (ha!):

BEFORE:

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The starting point for the command center when we moved in last May was actually just the ledge, the modem and router and phone, the ugly bowl of keys (I actually think that bowl was part of a light fixture, eeek), and the freebie planner and notepad.  Plus a big messy pile of folders, letters and other bills!  I got the file box and hanging folder from Muji on 3 June 2016, and the little boy letter holder was a temporary solution from Papemelroti.  I got the bar stool from Dimensione on 24 June 2016 but realized too late I should have done some measuring because the darn thing was too tall.  I had already ordered my mail pail by 22 June 2016 but didn’t have anyone to drill a hook into the concrete wall.

But my biggest problem with this corner was obviously that crazy scary web of cables and wires.

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At this point, on 02 July 2016, I found the Mandaue Foam bar stool that I loved and which was perfect for the wooden ledge.  It is also extremely comfortable, and I started to enjoy sitting there to work.  I covered the modem with a print I love from my brother and sister-in-law, but knew it was too small for that space.  And while my H hung up my My Domesticity mail pail, I also ended up getting a letter organizer (actually a gadget tray) from C&C because I realized I needed a place for outgoing mail.  (The mail pail is my version of an in-tray).  I stuck a Muji spiral notebook for taking down messages and made my own household calendar to replace the freebie planner and notepad.

I fell in love with an interesting key rack by Resurrection Furniture and Found Objects and took it home on 03 July 2016, along with my new pet rock which I use as a paper weight to keep my binder flat.

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It was time to get rid of the old bulky black phone and that icky bowl of keys.  I got a slim white cordless Alcatel phone from The Electronics Boutique on 11 July 2016.  It wasn’t until 07 July 2016 when my H mounted my Resurrection key rack together with my white boards (for menu planning – both from Office Warehouse) and the additional key rack by Kasch from Wilcon (bathroom hooks actually, but I wanted something small, discreet and in silver).  I got rid of the Muji spiral notebook and just added a tab in my Household Calendar for notes (with strict instructions to the help; I wanted to avoid loose leaves with scribbles all over the command center).

Then I got stuck in this stage for a while because I was trying to throw in the whole menu planning process.  I made a Lunch Box Planner for Laz, didn’t like it, but decided to stick with it for now.  So as not to drive myself crazy, I decided to set aside and separate the menu planning process from the whole setting up the command center bit.

The photo above is how the command center looked like for what seemed (to me) like a pretty long time.

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Instead of waiting for my dad to come home (he’s been traveling all month with my mother), I decided to try moving the modem and router myself.  Thankfully, I was able to do it without messing up our wifi signal at home.  Now the mess of cables is in the Master’s Bedroom, hahaha.  But oddly, this doesn’t bother me as much because the bedroom isn’t on my list of priority projects for the house.  (In other words, it’s just another messy spot in an already messy room).

At this point, aside from moving the modem and router, the only changes I could think of for this space was with the office supplies – I changed my purple scissors to a basic black pair.  Also added that trash bin by Skinny Can from Dimensione on 10 July 2010 and now whatever junk mail or envelopes we don’t use goes straight there. I was also stumped for a while as to how to make this space look cohesive and pretty.  (Melodramatic gal that I am, I was getting very antsy and even depressed about it too, haha).

AFTER:

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Then finally, on 14 July 2016, my Alo and I rushed out and made the rounds – to Muji, Common Room, Office Warehouse, Quirks, and Grassroots in Power Plant, to Heima in Brixton, and to Common Room again in Katipunan – on 14 July 2016 and 1) completed the black and white office supplies this corner needs, including that acrylic box from Muji which ended up looking so much better (instead of just leaving the white puncher out there) and 2) looked for a nicer print and got some decorations for this nook.  I used a Grassroots woven box to store my extra supplies for both the Family Command Center and School Station and kept it in the overhead cabinet above the command center. At long last, my command center was starting to look nice not just functional.

Like I shared before, I was initially going for a live plant there, but the pot sits by the edge of a high traffic area in my house, and I worried about someone knocking it over.  I realized I needed to put not just some green there (albeit made of paper), and other elements that made me happy – like the handmade origami crane mobile I picked up.

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I also replaced my Resurrection pet stone with a paperweight from Papemelroti (which I bought over a month ago).  Got labels printed for my command center accessories too.  I’ve replaced the grubby lanyards we were using (for our keys) with plain black ones from National Bookstore, and got some silver key chains.

So am I finally done, you ask?  Not quite yet.  I couldn’t find a print in Heima or Hey Kessy that I liked.  That’s just the picture that came with the frame I bought from SM Department Store years and years ago.  I was really gunning for a personalized print or little piece of art there that I can frame.  I asked a lawyer buddy Richelle if I could commission art from her, because I want something really colorful there (the only spot of color I want for that nook), and I saw her stuff in IG and just loved them.

I also need to still wrap and cover those black remaining cables sticking out, have some keys duplicated and finish that corner with the menu boards.  I still keep my Grocery List binder in the file box and it’s a tight squeeze (I couldn’t find a clipboard for size A5 paper, grunt), so I have to figure out where to put my Grocery List binder and white board marker (but I’m assigning that task to Menu Planning).  There are still some little (OC) things to do, but I can now gleefully remove the to-do list from my blog sidebar and relegate this corner to my Last Few Things page.

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