Wednesday, 01 January 2014 18:19

New Year's Resolutions - 2014

 

2013 did not go as well as I expected. Many reasons prevented me from completing all my goals. I did start several projects around the house. Lesson learned: don't give up when faced with challenges. Maybe I need to break down even more each one of the tasks on my list.

 

So I am going to continue with my previous goals, and see what I can accomplish this year.

 

Here are the projects I want to accomplish in 2014, in no particular order:

 

House Organization Projects:

- Finish the pantry

- kitchen cabinets

- Game/storage room

- Swap the office and guest room, and transform the new office into an office/workout room (this will be a huge project) I may go in a different direction... To be decided.

- Master closet

- Master bedroom

- Master bathroom

- Kids closet

- Laundry room

- Kids school art

- Kids bathroom

 

Personal:

- Improve family meal planning

- Loose 30 lbs

- Exercise at least 3 days a week

- Set aside more personal time with God

 

This is still a big list. Those are the things I need to do, so I'll keep working on this list for as long as it takes. Like I said before, I've started several of these during 2013. Now I need to concentrate on finishing these projects!

 

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I decided it's OK to divide the projects into more manageable steps. So instead of attacking the entire master closet, I just organized my shoe and handbag closet. Way less overwhelming.

 

When I first designed this closet, I simply divided the shelves that I had, somewhat evenly, not taking much into consideration how much space I really needed. The closet has these pull-out shelves. Each can hold up to 12 pairs of shoes. Originally, my shoes were sorted by color. With the top shoe shelve dedicated to black shoes, the second to browns and reds, the third to metallics, and the fourth to all other colors. The very bottom one was for my boots, and house shoes.

 

This way of sorting is interesting, because if you need a black shoe, all you need to do is open the pull-out shelve with the black shoes. But, there was a lot of wasted space. Each shelf had high heels and flat shoes. This meant less space for the shelves holding the handbags. Result: total bag mess. Since mess attracts mess, the shoe shelves ended up not so neat...

 

Solution: I lowered some of the shelves, raised a couple others, distributing the available space a little better. The very bottom of the closet is still for my boots, tennis shoes, and house shoes. But now the boots can "stand up", and not get damaged on their sides. Then the next two shelves are very close together, and they hold the flats, and the small to medium size heels. The next two have more space in between, and hold my high heels. Shoes are sorted based on color within each drawer. Another space saving way to store the shoes is to place the right shoe facing forward and the left facing backward. When I placed them like this, I was able to fit 12 pairs per shelve, instead of 10.

 

Handbags: now, with more space for handbags to stand upright, I was able to place them in a way that I can see all of them at the same time. No more bag on top of bag... I even found a couple of really cute bags that I had totally forgotten I had them!

 

With this way of organizing the shoes and bags, I realized I have more space, and can now bring some of the shoes that are in the garage back inside. I'm very happy with the results. Here are the before and after pictures.

 

After:

 

Before:

 

 

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I had a busy day today. Even Ric felt inspired and had his own plans to organize his office. My plan was to organize the console table that was in front of my makeup table. I woke up with this plan. It was a good plan. Simple. Easy. But, since life happens to all of us, things really didn't go as planned. When I was in the middle of the organization - and I mean, knee high in papers, hair products, papers from my old job from 2010, office supplies, and a bunch of random items that do not belong in the bedroom - Ric comes to me saying that he changed his mind on how he wants his office to be. Basically he doesn't want to switch his office and the guest bedroom for now. That means my plans to have an exercise area for me, and a small office space went down the drain.

 

Not only that. He was taking my Ju-Ju-Be bags out of the office too. Now my bags are homeless! Too much change. No plan. Yikes! So I had to improvise and compromise. I took the mini fridge out of the master bedroom - don't ask. OK. It deserves an explanation. Why would I have a mini fridge in my bedroom? I needed one when I went on bedrest - in 2010. It was never meant to stay for this long... Anyway... I returned it to the game room, moved the console table to where the fridge was, and put my Total Gym where the console table used to be. Not my ideal set up to have my Total Gym in the bedroom, but, hey, at least it's set up, and I won't have any more excuses not to exercise.

 

There is still a lot to do. I didn't do anything to my tall chest of drawers, or the nightstands - which are covered in more random stuff.

 

Ah, and around 1:30 PM I had to stop my organization to go to a kid's birthday party with my daughter. We came back at 5 PM, and I continued where I left off. It's 9PM and I just now stopped. I'm very tired. I will have to continue later.

 

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I am very happy to say that I started, and finished the makeup/nail/vanity project! This is part of my master bedroom/bathroom/closet organization project - which I'm doing one corner at a time. My makeup and nail products were being stored in a thin drawer in my closet, as well as in several Be Quicks, all shoved on the shelve below where I hand my clothes. It was very hard to see all that I had, and get dressed in the morning, not to mention messy. And plain hideous. My little drawer (actually half of a drawer) did work back when I didn't have as many beauty things. But my collection has grown quite a bit over the years. It's not like I could open my own beauty store with all my products. At least not yet.

 

I decided that getting ready in the morning quickly, and not wasting time looking for things was a very good starting goal in my master suite organization project. My system to organize my makeup and nail things was not working for me anymore. Please don't take me wrong. I love Be Quicks to organize beauty products during travel, It can even work inside a bigger train case when traveling. I wish Ju-Ju-Be made train cases, and specific makeup bags, to properly hold makeup brushes, and such.

 

Anyway, last Thursday I went to Ikea, and purchased an inexpensive, but cool looking table, with two large drawers, a led table lamp, and a chair. Sunday I got some drawer dividers and an acrylic organizer at Target, and some glass holders at the dollar store. Today I got an inexpensive large mirror at Ross. My mom and I assembled the table on Sunday, I organized all my stuff throughout the day. Earlier tonight we hung the mirror, and now my little spa area is complete!

 

I am thrilled with the result! No more digging through the makeup bags. Everything is at my fingertips. So organized! I'm feeling inspired!

 

Before: unused recliner/computer nook next to master bathroom

 

 

After: my new makup, nail, beauty center!

 

 

Future plan: Youtube video showing the details of how I organized the drawes, and a closer view of the table.

 

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I'd love to hear from you, so please leave a comment below! If you have registered already, please log in to post a comment. Thanks!

 

Published in Creative Living
Thursday, 31 January 2013 23:20

Post-birthday update

 

I've been sleeping like a rock for the past 3 days. For some reason I am way more tired after the birthday this time around. Probably because of the extra guests in the house. When you have guests over, no matter how much you love them, the daily routine changes, an you can't be as efficient.

 

Yesterday my dad invited that same friend from Saturday to come over for dinner. Dinner for 10 it was. My dad cooked, I cleaned.

 

The pantry and the fridge are a disaster. The bones of the pantry (the base layer that I organized weeks ago) are still there. But now people started adding lots processed foods and other items that I no longer want to eat on a daily basis.  I gave up trying to keep it organized while they are here. I will have to complete that after most of them leave. 3 people will leave tomorrow (Friday). . But 2 of them will be back in April.

 

So I am going to focus on my next project: The master bedroom and master closet. This will be a long project, but totally worth it. I already purchased some items for the transformation. Hopefully I'll be able to start this weekend. I will definitely post pictures!

 

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I'd love to hear from you, so please leave a comment below! If you have registered already, please log in to post a comment. Thanks!

 

Published in Creative Living
Thursday, 10 January 2013 00:00

Pixie Dust

 

I stayed home with my son and my daughter today. My son is not feeling well. He slept most of the afternoon, for about 4 hours. I used the time to print out happy birthday stickers, and finished all the party favor bags. Tinkerbell is everywhere....

 

My mom finished Iredessa's rainbow cones (you will only know what I'm talking about if you watched the first Tinkerbell movie - I watched each of the 4 movies about 1047 times...!).

 

My mom repurposed some empty baby food jars that I had saved, and she made a Winter Tinkerbell candy jar. The fabric was left over from when my daughter was born.  She also embellished a small, colorful treat box. Last week she finished some tissue paper flowers with a fairy on the center.

 

 

The key to the birthday parties at our house is to re-use, re-purpose, embellish and customise things we already have, or inexpensive items from the dollar store. A lot of the tissue paper my mom used to make the flowers were leftovers from previous gifts. The Winter Tinkerbell on the jars were from a wrapping paper from last year. I made all the Happy Birthday stickers that we used on the jars, boxes, and cones. We plan on cutting some of the fairies out of the toy boxes and packaging we got to use as part of the decoration.

 

 

 

 

 

I figure if my mom and I were fairies, we would definitely be tinkers!

 

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Published in Creative Living
Monday, 31 December 2012 00:00

New Year's Resolutions

 

I feel like I got a head start on my New Years Resolutions. Making the decision to change is the hardest step. Now, that that's done, I just have to focus on what needs to be accomplished. The next step is to define my motto, to make things clear for myself.

 

The catch phrase for the new year is: Declutterfication! Ok. The word doesn't exist. But it's meaning is very real. I must undergo declutterfication in many areas of my life. I'm talking about external and internal clutter. Extra stuff around the house, extra pounds around my waist... You get the idea.

 

I'm still not sure when exactly I let go of my organized ways, but it's time to devise a plan to get back on track.

 

Here are the projects I want to accomplish in 2013, in no particular order:

 

House Organization Projects:

- Finish the pantry

- kitchen cabinets

- Game/storage room

- Swap the office and guest room, and transform the new office into an office/workout room (this will be a huge project)

- Master closet

- Master bedroom

- Master bathroom

- Kids closet

- Laundry room

- Kids school art

- Kids bathroom

 

Personal:

- Improve family meal planning

- Loose 30 lbs

- Exercise at least 3 days a week

- Set aside more personal time with God

 

This is a big list. I just now realized that after looking at it written down. This is the direction I need to go. There is no way of knowing how far I can go, but I will try my best to accomplish as much on this list as I possibly can.

 

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Published in Creative Living
Tuesday, 25 December 2012 00:00

Making a list, and checking it twice!

 

It's Christmas!

 

This year my 4-year-old daughter is really understanding Christmas. She was so excited, and ready for gifts, and stockings, and everything else. So difficult for me, because I'm going through these total life changes, and my Christmas party spirit is overwhelmed.

 

My not being completely organized got in the way of my going all out this year. Basically all I did was setting up the big tree and stockings. But since I don't want to increase my stress level, I decided it was OK to go easy this year.

 

We still managed to have a wonderful time last night. We sang Christmas song (Ric plays the piano), we read to the kids, and I cooked a nice, but healthy dinner. I did forget to take the desert out of the freezer, so we had organic ice cream instead. I didn't think of putting “remove desert from freezer” in my Toodledo list, or have my phone remind me...

 

Talking about Toodledo, I am really liking having a to-do list in my phone. I'm entering new tasks as I think of them, and crossing off the ones I complete. What I need to do now is to get in the habit of checking the list the night before, and planning out the next day. I want to be on the Nice List next year, and have more decorations out around the house. But that takes some planning ahead. Hopefully my new to-do list will do the trick.

 

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Saturday, 22 December 2012 00:00

Virtually Organized

 

My husband Rick is not the most organized person on the planet. At least not out in the real world. In fact, he doesn’t even notice clutter. This is hard for me to understand, but it’s true. Clutter just doesn’t bother him. The interesting twist about Rick is that when it comes to the virtual world - meaning his computer files, desktop, backups – he is extremely organized.

 

I was talking to him about my organizing plans, and about plans for next year. At some point he had an idea. He got his phone out, and wrote it down in his to-do list. Wait a minute! He has a to-do list app? He does, and he uses it ALL the time! So I installed it and I’m starting to enter things that I need to accomplish.

 

He recommended the Toodledo.com website. It’s free to register. I went to the app store, and downloaded the app to my iPhone and iPad. I synced all of them with my toodledo websitet account. Whenever I enter a task via computer, phone or iPad, all devices are automatically updated.

 

So interesting that I got an organization tip from my husband! Who knew! If I could only make house chores become virtual tasks!

 

I don’t think I will enter doctor’s appointments, or birthdays, or meetings in this to do list app. I like to use a planner app for that. I think I will only keep my actual to-do list there. Let’s see how that is going to work out.

 

(Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with toodledo.com)

 

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Published in Creative Living
Sunday, 20 January 2013 00:00

To Do List

 

Today I am feeling overwhelmed with all the things I need to do. I used to be so good at making lists and crossing off accomplished tasks… What happened? When did I start not having time to write things down, and organize myself?

 

I think if I start writing down my to do list I won’t feel so overwhelmed. When I feel that way, I find it more difficult to actually get things done. The idea of a planner very appealing to me, but it would be just one more thing to carry around. I wonder if I can use my phone to help me get organized.

 

I think I’m feeling like this today because Christmas is right around the corner, and I have not finished getting all the stockings ready. I finally got everything today that I need to finish all the gifts and stockings. But it took me so long to buy everything! I was at the store for hours. In previous years, I had a theme, and it was easier to get all the gifts and stocking stuffers. Not this year. I should have gotten everything last month, or a couple of weeks ago.

 

I definitely need a to-do list app. For me, paper lists will just become more clutter, and the kids may decide to “decorate” some of my lists with drawings and stickers if they get a hold of my papers. On to researching good to-do list programs.

 

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