One of the weird traits I have is that I am a messy perfectionist.  I got this from my paternal grandmother.  She was the type to spend hours cleaning out her silverware drawer, organizing it, and shining everything in it until it gleamed; meanwhile the rest of the house went unattended.  I do things like this.  The entire house can be in shambles, but if I know I just organized the boys’ dresser drawers I can feel sane.  I spend so much time on these little projects that feel so important to me, but I cannot seem to manage the whole house at one time.  But I am working on it.  Part of this strange trait is loving to label things–obsessively.

Last Thursday I sat down to do a labeling project.  My sister-in-law took Jefe to the swim park and Scachemo was sleeping–a perfect time to get out scissors and paper and tubs and label away!  As I started working I thought, “Hey! Why don’t I make bilingual tags?!”  One of the summer projects I gave to my students was to label 100 things in their house.  Why not do it at my house too–but permanently!? Labeling works great for reinforcing or teaching new vocabulary because you see the object and the Spanish word at the same time…it gets your brain to associate Spanish with objects instead of having your brain translate from English to Spanish (like a traditional vocabulary card would do).

You may have seen this method in preschools (or maybe you have done it in English at your house) where everything is labeled with a picture and the corresponding word–sight words.  Labeling your house in Spanish has that same concept.  So here is the project I did on Thursday.  I am excited to start labeling other things to get my brain working in Spanish more often!

First I gathered a bunch of scrap paper and ribbon that matched these boxes from target that I wanted to label.

los trozos = the scraps (of paper)
la cinta = the ribbon

Our laundry room is in our bathroom and I bought these canvas tubs from Target to try out a new system where I fold the laundry directly from the dryer and sort them into tubs to be kept until I can get around to putting it away.  It was getting annoying having to pull down each tub to see what was in it before I put clothes in there.  So I am glad I finally found the time to label them.

el recipiente = the container

I found a scroll-y looking label shape on Google and printed it out to make a cardboard piece to trace for the base of the label.  I traced it onto different prints and colors to mix and match.

el cartón = the cardboard
el papel = the paper
I made some slightly smaller so I could layer the colors and patterns together.  Since I was doing this during nap time, I tried not to worry about making them perfectly aligned, and I simply taped them together and left it at that.  If I had more time I would laminate them to make them sturdier.  That is a project for another day I guess.

las tijeras = the scissors
la cinta adhesiva = the tape
At first I thought I would attach the labels with ribbons, but later decided these Scotch Reclosable Fasteners (velcro dots) that I had on hand would be better–that way the labels can easily be changed or switched.
There are two labels for each container–an English one and a Spanish one.  I mainly use these tubs to sort my laundry, the boys’ laundry and socks.  So my labels said mom/madre, boys/niños, and socks/calcetines.  Here you see them in English…

And here they are in Spanish!

This is just the beginning of my bilingual labeling days!  I will have my hubby speaking Spanish in no time at this rate!  (Did I tell you he is learning Spanish too, and using it at his job?!  I am so proud!)  How do you make your home bilingual?  Please share any ideas in the comments below!  Feliz labeling!