How to set up a home command center using smart ways to keep mail, schedules, keys, and documents organized for your family daily.
Blame it on our packed full after-school schedule or overcoming my ADHD forgetfulness tendencies, but I have tweaked our family command center to perfection over the years.
As your family grows and everyone has their own routine and tasks to complete, taking time to create a command center helps SO much to keep track of things. We’ve had ours in our kitchen for 5 years, and it’s the best system that keeps our busy family organized.
We’ve all been there before; it’s a hectic Monday with drop-offs and heading out the door to work. You get everyone to school or to their destination, and you realize you forgot lunches or forgot about dance class that afternoon.
If you have a blank wall to spare in your kitchen, mudroom, or laundry room, a home command center can help you and your family members stay on top of daily tasks and events.
What is a Home Command Center?
A family command center is essentially a wall or station in your house to help your family organize schedules, chore charts, mail, papers, messages, menus, keys, and/or bags.
It’s a wall space designed to be the “drop zone” when you first arrive home, the “check out zone” right before you leave, and the place that helps your family’s day-to-day life run smoothly.
Kitchen Command Center Ideas
Setting up a family command center is really simple, but it helps to know the amount of space you can dedicate and your family’s functional needs first. So here are some kitchen family command center ideas around our own organization system to help get you started.
1. Choose a Blank Wall in a Central Part of Your Home
A blank wall in a communal area of the house such as your entryway or kitchen is the perfect place to establish a family command center. The closer you can place it near your family’s usual path to enter/exit your home, the better.
This wall in our kitchen 5 years ago was a space that made me cringe every time I walked into the room, but it had lots of potential. The shelf on the wall was nothing but a clutter catcher.
Shelves like that are my nemesis because they hardly ever deliver real organization. After ripping it down, Robert and I discovered a quirky surprise behind it. Well, hello there fruity wallpaper!
So I ripped and patched and painted my heart out (asked the wallpaper if it had any great stories to tell from years past, but no luck), and we hung up its replacements to create our family command center.
2. Hang a Family Wall Calendar
Every command center space in a home needs a family wall calendar. Choose a dry erase board, a chalkboard calendar, a simple paper calendar, or a peel and stick vinyl calendar you can stick right on the wall.
We love this personalized acrylic wall calendar where we can also jot down menus, grocery lists, important reminders, and notes to each other.
3. Include a Paper Sorter
Rogue papers were a constant battle in our house until we got this wall-mounted paper sorter. Use slots to keep track of receipts, coupons, incoming mail, bills, school papers, and other documents.
Add labels or file folders to super streamline it.
4. Keep a Key Rack Handy
Our family is notorious for losing keys, but a key rack keeps us sane while reducing clutter on tabletops. Just one little wall hook for keys from the hardware aisle can do the job, if you don’t have multiple key rings to track.
5. Add a Bulletin Board
Having a cork board to place last-minute notes from school or important items will keep everyone on the same page.
Keep push pins available for any important documents, lists, bills, or whatever that need to remain front and center.
We love leaving sweet messages to each other on ours or displaying greeting cards that arrive from friends in the mail.
6. Include Markers for Color Coding
Hang a small wall-mounted basket beside your family wall calendar to hold dry-erase markers, and use multiple colors to color-code your schedule.
Use a specific color for each family member or a specific color for each event type on the shared calendar.
7. Incorporate Storage Needs Specific for Your Family
If you have the space, think about what other storage you could include for items you normally need to grab quickly on the way out of the door.
Maybe add a row of hooks for backpacks and lunch boxes. Or include a small shelf for your purse.
Robert and I have adjusted and tweaked some of the items on our kitchen command center wall here and there over the years, but all in all, it’s remained very much a working system for our family.
Anything to make adulting a little bit easier is a win, right?
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Family Command Center Organizers
Here are some recommended command center organizers to streamline your family’s day-to-day schedule.
- Acrylic Dry Erase Board
- Brass Wall Hooks
- Acrylic Weekly Wall Calendar
- All-In-One Wall Organizer
- Woven Hanging Basket
- Personalized Monthly Family Calendar
- Faux Leather Mail Pocket
- Brass Paper Roll Holder
- Linen Bulletin Board
- White Wall-Mounted Paper Holder
- 3 Piece Wall Organizer
- Gold Framed Dry Erase Calendar
- All-In-One Chalkboard Monthly Calendar Organizer
- File Holder
- Personalized acrylic wall calendar
- Cork memo board (similar)
- Mail sorter / key rack
- Shelf ledge
- Small wall basket
- Hammered wall planters
One of these days, maybe we can even get our acts together enough to go paperless. Google Calendar or the Cozi app work well, if you prefer being all digital. But since our kids don’t have phones yet, setting up a command center is the best solution.
Do you have any organization tricks you use to make adulting easier or any other trick that works for your family? Or ways to keep the mail manageable?