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Conquering entryway clutter

I suppose since I’ve gotten married it’s actually occurred to me how dirty my house gets, and how quickly it does so. Not to mention that hubby has left a lot of home renovation projects unfinished due to lack of time, money or both. I find that things bother me more easily. I think this is because this is officially OUR house now.

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Here’s the thing: I want a home that if, when a friend or family member calls and says “I’ll be over in 5 minutes,” I could actually straighten up in that amount of time and have the house be presentable to a guest. If you walked into my house right now, you would find that the coffee table is covered in mail, magazines, and detritus that hubby and I have taken from my purse and his pockets and left there.

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I’ve pored over realsimple.com, marthastewart.com, unclutterer.com looking for the perfect solution for this “point of entry” clutter. But the perfect solution involves a purchase – a purchase that I can’t afford to make right now.

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This is what I’m coveting now:

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The Graham Smart Technology Secretary from Pottery Barn.

I really want a secretary desk like this for our living room, one in which I can store & sort the mail; have stationery on hands for thank you notes & correspondence; store & charge our iPods, digital cameras and laptops. I’ll even take IKEA — I saw a great article in Better Homes & Gardens a few months ago that detailed how to turn an IKEA Alve secretary desk into an entryway organizer, and that’s basically what I’m going for. They even suggested drilling a hook in the side to hang your purse when you come home.

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We have the Clark Wall Shelf & Bench with Baskets set in red from JCPenney (which by the way is on sale and looks just like the PB version) and I think the set was a good investment, but I need storage for the things I mentioned above.

What do you do to keep things organized at your home’s entry point?

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