While our life might just be me and Daddykins, we have plenty of clutter, junk and our dining room table gets swallowed up on occasion when I get busy and going. So, in my quest for an organized and efficient house, I tackled the dining room to the best of my abilities, while maintaining our budget.
First and foremost was the mail. I do all I can to reduce the amount we get, but it still piles up after a few days and a small mess always leads to a bigger mess. So to deal with our mail, I saved up cereal boxes from work and cut them at a cute angle and covered them with some leftover wrapping paper. While the wrapping paper was a bit tricky with the slanted sides, they turned out really cute and are very helpful. I had four and made the categories "bills," "coupons," "health," and "girls." I file things as they come in and go through everything on Fridays and file it in a more permanent location.
It may seem silly to file things twice, but I do not always have all my binders out at one time and this allows me to be quick about going through mail and making sure it gets to where it needs to be.
The second pitfall of my dining room... the buffet, which houses all my gift wrapping supplies. Silly, I know, but we have no extra dishes or linens, so putting bows and ribbons in there made sense when I had nowhere else for them to go. But then I got more, and more, and more wrapping paper, bows, ribbons, tissue paper... you name it... and the drawers started exploding! So I cleaned it out, threw away what I didn't want, and made what I had fit!
Hopefully when Daddykins and I get our house, I will have my own craft room (or corner) and can make use of some dowels and boxes to make it slightly more functional. But for now, and for my budget, this works!