As soon as you opened my front door, my hall entrance used to be filled with a jumble of shoes and backpacks. I tried everything -- a shelf, a basket, a shoe rack -- and still the pile of shoes just grew. These lame attempts just didn't work for anyone and finally, I gave up. One day, after I brought home my second antique typewriter, I set it atop a chair and stuck it in the corner by the front door. It carried the message "merry Christmas" until I came up with something better.
And here's what I came up with... A weekly message center. So, if my kids do something wonderful like get straight As or score a goal in soccer, I can use it to congratulate them. On regular days, I search for appropriate and inspirational quotes to put in my typewriter.
And you know what? The jumble of shoes and packs isn't there anymore!
It moved to the other side of the door. Sigh.