Behind the Door Kitchen Command Center for a Small Space

I have to admit, I don’t have children so I’m not exactly juggling a whole lot around here. But, I used to work full time while my husband coached baseball for a living and since he was home most of the time, he took on the role of what we call “House Manager”.

Eventually, he retired from coaching and entered the corporate world. California Bay Area commute and all. (Boo for him!)

So, since I worked closest to home, “House Manager” duties defaulted back to me. *Sigh*

As I’ve shared before, our house is not big. That’s why I was always intrigued by all the kitchen command centers I saw on Pinterest. Often times, it’s just a small wall converted into useful space.

My garage door into the house opens right into my kitchen – it’s the  black door (shown below – you can see more in my kitchen board and batten wall post). That means every time we walk in the house, everything ends up piled on the kitchen table – keys, shopping bags, mail, half-empty fast food cups.

A few years back I hung a mail organizer/key holder behind the door in an effort to stop losing my keys, but let’s face it – it was an eye sore:


I really wanted to eliminate the kitchen table clutter and improve this sad wall, so I designed a command center to hold keys, mail, sunglasses and magazines. (Side note: the baby gate is what we use to keep our dog from going upstairs when we’re not home – like I admitted above, we’re a child-free home).

We decided to frame it to match the door:


Then, we added wood inside the frame:


Next, we added some framing to the bottom third to match the board and batten wall on the other side of the door:


The ledge was an important part of the design since it can hold sunglasses and other small accessories:


The bottom section was designed to hold magazines and some file folders to organize coupons. We painted the top black (it’s not chalkboard paint) and the bottom white:


Amazing what a coat of paint can do, huh?


Here it is with the framed calendar, mail and key organizer and some magazines/coupon file holders in the rack below:


The best compliment was the other day when my girlfriend came over to bring me lunch after I had sinus surgery. She was enamored with it so much she hired someone to build one at her house!

Here’s her version – a simple framed out command center that’s magnetic so she can get the clutter off the fridge – she has 3 kids!


Again – here’s my before and after. We just love it!


DIY Vegas Party Accessories for 40th Birthday

As I mentioned in my previous post, my whole family spent a weekend in Vegas for my brother’s 50th birthday recently.

On his actual birthday, we dined at Ruth’s Chris (his favorite restaurant) right on the strip.

Below, I detail some of the custom creations that made his celebration all the more special.


Custom Card Suit Themed Party Glass

Everyone needs a light-up glass if they’re celebrating their birthday in Vegas (or even if they just with they were).


This was super simple to made using my vinyl cutter (I use the Cricut).

See how I made this custom Vegas themed birthday glass here.

Keepsake Card Deck with Birthday Pictures

I printed out pictures from each of his first 10 birthdays and attached them to their coordinating numbers on a deck of cards.

It was a fun way to walk down memory lane over appetizers.


Custom Photo Coasters

How cool are these coasters from Zazzle?

I added a current picture inside the zero and they printed his age and name on them.


Confetti Numbered Poker Chips

I also added these little round confetti pieces with the number 40 from Party City to some cheap poker chips and spread them around the table (so much cheaper than custom poker chips!):


Card Suit Casino Party Hat

The birthday boy also got a giant casino party hat to which I added a vinyl #40 (which didn’t stick all too well, but worked for dinner).


Casino Themed Centerpiece

I found this awesome hat at party city and hat to get it for the centerpiece.

I propped it up on a candle holder with some scapbook paper and poker chips, then added some floralytes.


Custom Photo Birthday Card

Funny story, I was at a family dinner earlier in the year at a restaurant that takes keepsake photos. The photographer mistakenly thought I was my brother’s wife and said “Put your arm around your girl!”

We cracked up over the picture that resulted. I used it to create a custom birthday card for him:


Personalized Las Vegas Luggage Tags

Everyone who went to Vegas got a personalized luggage tag from Shutterfly – so fun!


All in all, our Vegas party weekend was a success.


Vegas Themed Birthday Party Glass

Ever wanted to throw a Vegas themed party?

Ever decided to throw it, in Vegas?

Recently, my brother turned 40 and my family started a new tradition of throwing a surprise birthday party trip on milestone birthdays. (Only 4 years to go for me!)

So, after a bunch of secretive emails, 15 airline tickets and 7 hotels rooms at the Planet Hollywood, we all ended up in Vegas for 24 hours of 40th birthday fun.

I was in charge of all the party decor, which I’ll share in another post.

One of my party staples is a personalized birthday glass, which is super easy to create thanks to my Cricut. (I used to create them using stickers from the craft store which works really well too!)

For this Vegas themed party, I added my brother’s name (Brad) and the number 40 to this fun light-up glass from


It was super simple – just 4 diamonds, 1 spade, 4 letters sized to fit the diamonds and the number 40 sized for the spade.


I create all the graphics in Photoshop, then save & upload to Cricut Design Space. A quit cut later on some red and black vinyl and all done!


Our party had dinner in a private room at Ruth’s Chris right on the strip. I can’t wait to share pics of the room all decked out, but for now, here’s a shot of his custom birthday glass on the table:


Pretty fun, huh?

Since making custom birthday glasses is a tradition of mine, I’ll share another post soon with all the ones I’ve created so far. I love finding different styles of glasses and creating graphics that match the color scheme and theme of each party.