Archive for the ‘organize’ Category
Last week I wrote about beginning my journey of Simplicity. I would love to report that I am sooo acing this life challenge. Wouldn’t it be grand to have my house perfectly in order without any extraneous things cluttering up the place?!
Sunday afternoon I opened up my closet, prepared to embark on the 333 challenge, or at least my version of it. The 333 challenge is where you choose 33 pieces of clothing that you will be wearing over the next 3 months. This should be easy for me since I am notorious for living out of my laundry basket. The typical person wears 20% of their wardrobe 80% of the time. Totally me.
But what happened when I opened my closet…I found all of my summer clothes from last summer. And I had some really cute tops. Did they not fit me at the beginning of the summer? Did I even look at them at the beginning of the summer?
And why do I have twenty swimsuits with none that really fit well? Or the one that does is worn out from chlorine?!
I quickly closed the closet back up and will deal with it another day. I’m like Scarlet O’Hara that way. Maybe some closet fairies will come along and fix things for me!
I did have some successes:
- I cleaned off the mantle. I plan on getting the glassware that was there washed and stored away. I really love it, but wanted something different for the fall. This way I can put it away and pull out what I want at a later date.
- I cleaned out my china/display cabinet and removed everything I didn’t absolutely love. I have some pieces I bought at various home parties that cost a pretty penny, but really weren’t calling to me. They’re in the box potentially going to Good Will.
- I cleaned out my downstairs bookcase and pulled out all my glass, fusing, lampwork, and mosaic books. I’ve sold most of them on a glass working site. Not only will they be gone (heading to the post office today!) but I made a little money from them. I’m pretty sure I got most of them from the same site, so it’s like gifting them to the new generation of glass artists (you know, the ones without the inflammatory arthritis that keeps them from flameworking…). I also had some knitting and crochet booklets that I am sending to Ravelry friends.
- I tackled another kitchen cabinet. I thought I was up to date on the expired meds, but was I wrong! Sheesh! How do they accumulate?! Anyway, the old pills and probably-stale boxes of tea are also gone. I got everything I could reach. Need help with the rest!
How did you do this week? Did you get rid of anything? Give up like me? Re-thinking the whole project, content to live with the dust? Yeah, that’s crossed my mind!
Let me know how you’re doing!
Hey, did you know I’m doing a giveaway of a book? Check this out to win your own copy of Beautiful Beasties.
I have an urge lately to really pare down and live simply. Don’t get frightened, I’m not turning in my digital devices. I will continue to be a techno ho. Seriously, the iPhone is a minimalists dream because it’s a phone and music player in one! Right?!
I want to simplify my home. I want clear spaces. I want fewer things. Less clothing languishing in the closet, unworn.
And, darn it, I’m going to do it!
I probably won’t get as spare as paring down my wardrobe to 33 pieces as discussed on this blog. But I probably don’t need 20 swimsuits either.
I’ve been “going simple” for years now. I seem to go in waves. But this time I want to make a dent somewhere.
I plan on keeping myself on track by reporting my progress here on my blog. And I want you to join in.
My September goals were to sort through the pantry and to de-clutter the living room. I’m pleased to announce that I have done the pantry. Now I have 11 days to do the living room!
What will you do? Share your goals and tips in the comments below!
You know who’s going to lead this country when we are old and demented? The children. They will be out politicians, cops, teachers…they will be in charge and it will be their turn to rule the world.
So why aren’t we treating them better?
I know the majority of the people reading are great parents. Decent people who take their job as guiding children seriously and are doing the best they can.
But what about the rest of the people? The ones who have no qualms abusing, killing, molesting, neglecting our children? After a long weekend of avoiding Yahoo news, I am stunned today to find so many stories about the abuse and mistreatment of our children.
From the couple (mom and her boyfriend) charged with the child abuse death of her four year old son, to the man caught watching child pornography on an airplane in first class. This is just a few days’ worth of news.
Sadly, the mother mentioned was just convicted with child abuse in October. Why did she have her children with her?! What kind of fool looks at child pornography in a public place? Someone who’s not concerned about the consequences at all. We know that the way people act in public is just a mere glimpse into how they act in public.
How about the kids who went shopping at a Toys R Us in California, having their outing marred by the shooting deaths of two fellow shoppers? I bet that’s scarred them for life! It’s bad enough the women with these men got into a physical brawl with each other. What possesses someone to take a gun into a toy store? Luckily the men only killed each other and not some unfortunate by-stander.
I can’t write about all this and avoid talking about the very public and disturbing stories of men trusted to work with young people being accused of abuse. Honestly, I tried to avoid the Sandusky mess. I didn’t want to know the details; I don’t need that negativity in my head. I even felt sorry for the treatment of the person who witnessed the abuse ten years earlier. I figured he had done what he could with the bureaucracy that is any large institution. I gave him the benefit of the doubt, because I’ve been a mandated reporter where each report was weighed and researched before reporting.
Then I read this weekend’s article where it was stated that Sandusky was seen having intercourse with a child. What the freak?! A grown adult saw another adult having sex with a child and didn’t immediately get to a phone to call 9-1-1?! That’s outrageous and whatever consequences there are for those actions are well deserved. Could it be that Bernie Fine’s wife knew about his molestation of his ball boys long ago? This article suggests that a taped conversation from years ago could mean exactly that. Apparently, she chose not to discuss this with authorities, just one of the victims.
You can see why I am concerned about the misuse and abuse of our children. I know abuse is a long-standing phenomenon in society. Luckily, the blinders have come off and people are acknowledging that it is not OK.
But do we need to do more? And what, exactly, can we do?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas about this. Is there something we–as world-famous bloggers–can do? Can we be the salvation of our world’s greatest resource?
I have a new addiction and I am pleased to share it with you all. I want you to know about this incredible thing. I want you to participate. I want to see your ideas so I can repin them.
Yes, I said “repin.”
Pinterest is the latest most awesomest thing on the internet. I’m not exaggerating.
Two or three times a day I venture into Pinterest Land and see what incredible things people are pinning. Let me explain how this works…
- I’m searching for something on the vast land of the internet. Let’s say, cord organization. My desk drawer is run over with cords from the family’s various electronic devices and needs to be tamed.
- I find a website that shows a way to use a box and toilet paper tubes. Stuff the cords in the tubes, close the box, and you have organization.
- I think this is genius, and I want to share it with people. So I pin it via the toolbar link I have to Pinterest.
- Now people who are following my boards can also see the great idea.
Actually, I wasn’t searching for cord organization tips and didn’t even think about that. But I saw someone’s pin on Pinterest and knew I had to use the idea!
And that’s the beauty of Pinterest. All the things that the internet has to offer and you don’t know you need to know are right there on your screen for the taking. Because other people did the work for you! They took the time to pin gorgeous pictures of scenery, houses, decorating ideas, crafts, babies, food…and now you know about the greatness.
But that’s only part of the genius that is Pinterest.
Pinterest is also a great place to organize the things you are actually searching for on the internet. Let’s say I’m searching for hats to knit for the winter. BP (Before Pinterest) I could bookmark sites, maybe print out several patterns. But bookmarks and paper seem to get lost on my unorganized desktop (computer and the actual desk!).
Pinterest allows me to create a board that I call “Things to Knit” and I can pin the ideas for hats directly there. On my board I will see the pictures. When I click on the pictures I will be taken to the actual site where I found the pattern. Genius!
Some might say this is a huge time sucker. But I disagree. It’s gotten my creativity flowing again. Ideas are coming. There are so many things I want to do and try.
Do yourself a favor and check it out. I needed an invitation to join. If that’s still the case, let me know and I will send you an invitation. Because I need your ideas for inspiration…Here’s my link!
I am totally stealing this idea from Carolyn over at this talk ain’t cheap. She is a genius! Instead of leaving half-assed clues out and about in preparation for Mother’s Day and, in my case, my May 12th birthday, I’m spelling out what I want. Thank you, Carolyn!
If you make a list, let me know so I can get ideas. If you want me to send it anonymously to your family, I’ll do that too!
I’m stealing this from Carolyn’s list. Except I want the Epiphanie camera bag in turquoise. Jim should appreciate my need for this after seeing me schlep my purse and my camera bag to the Foreigner concert last week! One combo bag would be so nice!
I want these interchangeable knitting needles from KnitPicks in the nickel. If you’re a knitter, you’ve got to give these a try. I got the starter set so I could sample the three different types. Actually, I haven’t even tried the others (acrylic and wood) because I love these so much. Very similar to Addi turbos.
I can always use a new Miche shell for my big bag. This one would be perfect! It’s called the Allison.
Of course, gift cards are always appreciated: Amazon and iTunes.
Happy Mother’s Day and birthday to me!
PS. My great yearning for the iPhone is on hold until my contract is up. And the convertible Camaro is but a dream…
You’ve got to love someone who has coined the phrase “org porn.” Who was this linguistic genius? Actually, it’s two someones: Alicia Rockmore and Sarah Welch, the authors of Pretty Neat: The buttoned-up way to get organized and let go of perfection. They are also the creators of buttoned up organizational products.
How, exactly, is “org porn” defined? Straight from the author’s lips…or pages:
…that glossy, airbrushed fantasy world where everything is pristine, serene, and perfectly in order, sort of like Playboy, but with chore charts and name-plated cubbyholes. It’s everywhere you look these days: in magazines, coffee table books, advertisements, and TV shows. And when consumed in excess, it can lead to feelings of inadequacy, binge spending on organizational products, and even marital discord.
Now I know why I love going to IKEA and sitting in one of those display rooms. It must be how some people feel about going to a strip club. Except it’s the tidy room and organizational products that make me swoon. Not some over-inflated, thong wearing, stripper! Instead of Playboy, I read Martha Stewart Living and Country Home!
The book is filled with all kinds of useful tips on organizing home, work, kids, meals, and email. Between real-life stories and advice, the authors offer great ideas for taming the clutter and disorganization in your own life while not feeling the end result must resemble what you see in the perfectly coifed pages in a home and garden magazine. Did you know it’s ok that not every single room in your house is a glistening showroom?!
This book will be a great addition to my reference library. I know I’ll be referring to the chapter on taming email more than once! That’s one area that I need to get under control…STAT!
I am pleased to provide one lucky reader with their very own copy of Pretty Neat! It’s easy to enter: simply comment on this post. Be sure to include a way that you can be contacted. I will draw a name on Friday, March 18, 2011.
I’ve struggled with organizing for my whole life. In some ways, I am super organized. In other ways, I am an unorganized mess. I have no idea why this is. I just want to be organized all the time!
My ah-ha moment happened last week. I had to take the turbo mini van to get it checked out. Jim and I went over to pick it up. I took the receipt from the mechanic and followed Jim home.
I knew the receipt had to be put away in the glove box. I imagined how I would carefully fold it into thirds and put it in there with the other receipts. Then I thought I should get an accordion folder to hold the receipts, which I would organize by date, latest on top. That would be a great way to keep track of the maintenance. Certainly it would be neater than the system I had now of papers filed in willy nilly order in the glove box.
I picked Jim up so we could finish our errands. He promptly gets into the van, picks up the receipt, sloppily folds it, and puts it into the glove box. I’m speechless!
I recover and shriek, “But you folded it wrong!”
He just laughed. Then made some smart ass comment about me not being able to sleep that night because I would be thinking of the incorrectly folded piece of paper in the van.
Well, I’m not that bad. But I do like things even. Corner to corner. Neat folds. Getting a piece of paper folded into equal thirds would be heaven. I like my towels with even ends, tags to the back, thank you very much. I like piles of books and magazines with the corners matched, smallest on top.
So where is my ah-ha moment? When I realized that if Jim hadn’t gotten into the van and quickly folded the receipt and put it into the glove box, that it would have sat there forever. Literally. Because I would have gone on to something else. I would have forgotten the need for an accordion folder. Eventually, the paper would have migrated into the back of the van and would have been trampled and ruined. And you know that that would be the receipt I needed in a few months!
If you do an Internet search on perfection and procrastination, you’ll find page after page of sites. Is it the perfection that leads to the procrastination? Or is the perfection disguised as procrastination? Kinda like the chicken and the egg to me.
Here’s the gist of my ah-ha moment: sometimes you just have to do things. Getting something done is better than waiting for the exact time to do something perfectly. Perfection isn’t always necessary.
This need to do something perfect has plagued many areas of my life. I would never have written the first draft of my first novel if it wasn’t for the absolute freedom that National Novel Writing Month (aka NANoWriMo) brought. Sit down and write 50,000 words in 30 days! Don’t worry about spell check! Don’t worry about grammar! Just get the words on paper. So I did that with gleeful abandon. Those words flowed so easily! Every day was an adventure.
Yet, the novel still sits here, unedited. Because I don’t know the perfect way to edit! I want a system! I want to know what works for other people. Except the more I research it, it seems that there is no perfect way. There’s whatever way that works best for you. Once November and NaNoWriMo is over, I will be doing editing of the two pieces. Hopefully, along the way, I will learn a method of editing that will work for me.
I am going to read one more book on organizing though. I love Hellen Buttigieg and have ordered her latest book, Organizing Outside the Box: Conquer Clutter Using Your Natural Learning Style. I will review the book when I am done, to let you know if it helps me. I love Hellen’s show neat that is only in re-runs now. I found it so helpful. Hopefully, her book will be as helpful! If you want to order the book and read along with me, here’s a link to purchase. Let me know if you do and we can do this together!
Seriously, the WORST MOVIE EVER!
What? You’re thinking, “it can’t be that bad.”
Oh, but it is. And I am here to spare you. Save you money. You can thank me later.
Do not, under any circumstance, go see Piranha 3-D. Yes, I went. Simply so you won’t have to.
I have never been to a 3D movie. What could be better than a campy, fish-filled frolic? I’m always up for a good bad movie. Jim & I spend many a Saturday nights watching SyFy movies. I spent this Saturday night watching Lake Placid 3–how bad could Piranha 3-D be compared to that?!
Let me tell you, Lake Placid 3 is an Oscar worthy movie compared to the dreck of Piranha 3D.
We had to take Aaron with us because the twins were busy. I had no idea that the entire movie was blood and boobs. Naked women frolicking in an underwater synchronized swimming routine. Boobs. Boobs. Blood. Blood. And more boobs and more blood.
Don’t be fooled by the opening scenes with Richard Dreyfus. It’s just a joke. He’s only there to lull you before the shit hits the screen.
Jerry O’Connell is fun as the director of the Wild Wild girls he’s brought to frolic at spring break. But even he can’t pull off a Speedo. Seriously.
Elizabeth Shue is the highlight of the movie. As the sheriff she performs mean feats to save the day.
The 3D part was cool. I jumped out of my seat more than once as things flew at me. I liked the multi-dimensional effect. Honestly, though, the best 3D part was the advertisement right before the previews meant to showcase the 3D. That was cool!
I could have done without the hour-long massacre scene as college students are attacked by the mutant prehistoric piranha. It might not have been an hour, but it seemed like it. It would have been so much better if the dead people had turned into zombies. Remember, directors of film–zombies can always save the picture! It was at that point that I suggested we leave. But we stayed.
I can’t even say save this one for DVD. It’s that bad. Save your money and do something else.
I’m starting a new weekly post listing the meals I am serving each day. There are many articles that discuss the importance of the family dinner. Here, here, and here are just some of the available articles.
Since becoming a family, it has been the routine to eat dinner together most nights of the week. We didn’t do it to strengthen our family, it just happened to be the way it worked out. We’ve had interesting discussions and arguments. We’ve laughed. Sometimes Aaron even makes me cry because he’s so picky! Just kidding! Takes more than an 11 year old kid to make me cry!
Each Saturday I make a list of the week’s meals. This is the hard part. I seem to get into ruts and we end up having the same things over and over, week after week. Once the meal list is made, the grocery list is created from that. The meal list isn’t etched in stone. Some weeks things get jumbled up. Some weeks we’ll end up getting pizza one night. We’re nothing if not flexible!
This week’s meals:
- Sunday, meatloaf: ground beef, egg, bread crumbs, ketchup, mustard, worcestershire sauce
- Monday, Italian sausage and peppers
- Tuesday, enchilada casserole: black beans, salsa, frozen corn, diced chilies cooked and then layered between tortillas and topped with shredded cheese
- Wednesday, spaghetti primavera: sauteed zucchini, onion, mushrooms with jarred spaghetti sauce and canned crushed tomatoes.
- Thursday, chicken tenders
- Friday, breakfast
I’m really trying to cook with whole foods, but some things are just really easier store bought: spaghetti sauce, salsa, breaded chicken tenders. I use mostly frozen or fresh fruits and vegetables.
Will you share your menus? Maybe we can get some ideas from one another!
You know, the ones you wrote or made in January. I did a nice little layout of my resolutions–or goals as I chose to call them. I noted actions needed to accomplish my goals. It looks really pretty.
Last week I chose to review my goals. It was a another goal I made that week for a writing group I belong to. I quickly found the nice little type-written page and spread it open on the keyboard.
[My desk has undergone a transformation recently when I was driven to clean it off. And it has stayed that way! It is amazing what empty wood looks like!]
Goals 1, 2, and 3…working on them pretty steadily.
I’m working out, trying to regularly keep a food diary (I use the one at Daily Plate and it’s nice. They boast over 650,000 foods in their database. There’s also an IPod Touch app.)
I’m writing. I made quite a dent in the first draft of a second mystery novel during the Guppies Chocolate Challenge. I joined the Goals for Guppies group so I would be inspired to keep up the writing challenge! I’m keeping up my blog and am working steadily on the Motherhoot website.
I’ve been keeping up with Avon and servicing all my regular customers.
Then I got to number 4. I had completely forgotten about it until I spread that piece of paper on the key board. It’s a fairly important one. It’s something I am always struggling with. OK, I’ll confess: I am trying to get my house organized. Corral those stray papers, deal with the mail immediately, file important things away immediately.
I keep asking myself how with a mere four measley little resolutions I could actually forget one. Heck, maybe I actually have four children and have just focused on three. The fourth is stagnating somewhere under a hairball in the corner!
All I can think of now is that I hope my goals only took up one 8.5×11 inch page. I hope there’s not another sheet or two of neatly organized resolutions floating around the house.