"Sometimes you gotta create what you want to be a part of it."
-Geri Weitzman

Thursday, August 22, 2013

What a Little Paint Will Do

   Paint doesn't scare me.  I love making a dramatic change to something that is long over due for an update and paint can do that for hardly any cost.  So, for this project I wasn't nervous.  Painting my cabinets wasn't anything new to me and the bathroom walls have been a couple different colors before so I knew what I was getting myself into.  The outcome is (I think) incredible!  It was all because of paint.  I am a huge fan of Behr paint.  Especially their Ultra paint and primer all in one.




  I added knobs to the cabinet to give it a little more character and dress it up.  I matched them to my shower curtain rings.  See what just a little paint can do.  Happy painting!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

A New Way To Label Your Things

  After cleaning and reorganizing my spice/baking cabinet I re purposed some jars and put my flour and sugar in them.  I didn't want sticker labels on them and I remembered that I saw some dry erase labels.  So, off to Target I went and I got some as well as wet erase markers as well.  Then that way I don't rub the writing off every time I would go to reach for a canister.

  Look for this on the wet erase marker package.  The only brand that I could find was Expo.

  For both the labels and the wet erase markers I didn't even spend $10.  Huge plus is that the labels come in a back of AND  they are removable!  Believe me they are removable and you can put them on something else so they will last forever.  What an exciting purchase.  Another thing that these labels will be good for is canning season.  Happy labeling!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Fitness Friday: Calorie Burning Calculator

   Reorganizing, cleaning, rearranging and gardening...that has seemed to be all I have been doing for the past few weeks.  By the end of the day I don't feel like going and doing a work out.  Honestly I have worked out all day.  I am not just talking about just scrubbing the toilet and wiping down the windows I am talking about pulling everything out of the closet or being in the hot sun and cleaning out a flower bed and doing this for hours at a time.  So, I decided to look it up and see how many calories I burn doing all this stuff.  It's hard work and it's nice to know how rewarding it is.  I found this web site www.healthstatus.com I clicked on Home and then health calculator and it has a very long list of activities.  Just type in your weight and how many minutes you did your activity, select your activity and it will calculate it for you.  Utilize your resources and learn as much as you can about your fitness and your health.  I hope you find this helpful.  Happy fitness!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Revamped Lamp

  Have you ever noticed how expensive lamps are?  Well, I have and I decided to repurpose another lamp so I didn't have to buy one.  So, I grabbed my paint and went to work.

  I used Behr Ultra in Antique White.  After the paint was almost completely dry I sanded around the edges and at random spots.  Happy revamping!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Thrift Store Find: New Kitchen Table

  For a long time my husband and I looked for a new kitchen table but didn't want to spend the money and we couldn't find something that we really liked.  I decided to pop into the thrift store one day and found this vintage table that was perfect; price point, style and size.   So we bought it.  My husband helped me sand it down, paint and stain it.  All we had to do is put some wood glue on thejoints of the legs and use some wood putty in a few cracks and it turned out magnificent.  I can't wait to find another piece of furniture to redo!  This only cost us $100!  If we would have had to buy the paint we used for the legs it would have been $120.  This is including all the supplies as well.  This beats the $400 table that we were eyeing at a store and to be quite honest we were not completely sold on it.



  The biggest tip I could give you is to stay even with your strokes when using a stain.  Oh, and patience.  Don't rush a project like this.  It will pay off.   Here is a close up.

  We used Poly Shades by Minwax in Espresso and the legs are Behr Ultra in Antique White eggshell finish.  We did get some help from one of our furry residence...

  She was really interested in what was going on.  I hope this inspires you to go out and find your amazing thrift store gem.  Happy thrift shopping!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Meal Planning

  I think it's pretty well known, especially since the big coupon bang, that meal planning makes things much simpler.  Knowing what you are having for dinner to being able to get a grocery list down in six seconds flat really does make it nice.  Today I thought I would share with you how I make my meal plans and grocery list.  Really it's common sense but sometimes it is an overwhelming task so it's nice to share ideas.  Our household consists of two of us but I have to say that meal planning saves us money (even without using coupons).  So this is how I do it.

1.  I take one day of the week to sit down and figure out what we want for dinner.  Obviously I take into consideration if there are any special events, or certain dinner parties planned for the week. Lately I have been getting a lot of good recipes off of Pinterest but usually I sit down with my cookbooks and get ideas from there.
2.  I section my grocery list off into produce, meat, dairy and misc.  As I go through the meals I write down everything I need onto my grocery list.  Simple as that.

   One of the best things about meal planning is that you get familiar with what is in your pantry and what you can stock up on.  Like I said before this has saved us a lot of money because we are not spending $20 to $30 every other day and not really getting anything besides what we need for just that meal or that day.  There you have it.  Happy shopping!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Peace of Mind

  This weeks topic I really wanted to come up with different things about simplifying your life.  To me it's not just about the closets, the cabinets or the drawers looking nice and neat, it's also about ways to make you feel better, ease your mind and find ways to enjoy everything.  One thing that I do, besides clean,  is keep a journal.  Now, to be honest I don't write in it every day.  However, it is something that helps me sort through my mind.  Even if it's not about your every day life you can keep a workout journal or craft journal, anything you want.  There's no rules, no english teacher to grade you and no one to tell you what you're feeling, doing, saying is wrong except you.  So, try it.  You would be surprised how different you will feel after.  Happy writing.

Monday, August 5, 2013

File Cabinet Clean Out

  Every year I go through my filing cabinet and clean it out.  All of the bill stubs, receipts, etc. go into a box and get stored away.  Rather than just dumping them into a box I have decided to take advantage of the $1 section at Target and bought file folders.  Now I can have them a little more organized in the box and label them by year.  Easy peasy.  Once again, simplifying things for now and later.

  Happy filing!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Simplifying Your Kitchen Cabinets

  Seven different spatulas, four half bags of sugar and parts and pieces of small kitchen appliances that you no longer have haunt your kitchen drawers and cabinets.  Just like a closet they collect a lot of junk.  Using the same pointers as yesterdays post Living Room Closet Reorganize you can do the same for your kitchen.
  I find that having an organized kitchen simplifies my routine in cooking and grocery shopping.  Knowing where everything is keeps me up on what I am out of.  To spruce things up I lined most of my drawers and cabinets with contact paper.  My biggest reason for doing this is because I recently put in a new sink and garbage disposal and I saw how bad it looked under the sink.  Here is what it looked like.  

   Before I put my contact paper down I painted the bottom of the cabinet with a primer that helps with mold and mildew.  Kilz is a great product to use and it dries quick.  Considering that I had minor water damage I figured this was a smart move.

  After all is said and done this is the new look under the sink.  I put my dish cleaning supplies in a separate tub than my other cleaners.  I also made sure that my tubs had solid bottoms just in case anything leaked.
  Moving onto my spice cabinets.  I am warning you it's bad...

  Seriously, Martha Stewart would pass out seeing this!  I moved my spices to the other side of the stove in a different cabinet.

  The most used spices are in the front rows and then what ever was left over I put on the side.  My flour and sugar went into glass containers.  My baking soda, baking powder and other small boxed baking/cooking items went into a tub and I labeled it on the outside.  Being able to see and know where everything is makes cooking easier.  I always hate when I go to cook something and I am missing an important ingredient.  We all know the spice cabinet is a dreaded area to check when making a grocery list.  This will definitely be a BIG saver for me.
  If the task of taking on your entire kitchen is too much start with one cabinet or one drawer.  Happy cleaning!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Living Room Closet Reorganize

  Not only am I a neat freak about what you see in front of you but I am a neat freak about what is behind the closet door.  If I were to have guests over and they were to open a closet door I would want them to be blown away.  Plus it gives me peace of mind.  The more clean, the more organized the more simple your mind and life will be.  I shared with you how I organized my movies, well you will see how they were before in this post.
  I even simplified my steps and rules to reorganize the closet and I am happy to share them with you.

1.  Take inventory of what you have and decide what stays and what goes.
      -I used the rule if we haven't used it, watched it, worn it, etc. in the last 6 months and there is no
sentimental value then it GOES.
      Example: We had games that we haven't played in a long time so I put them in the donation box.

2.  Decide where and how you are going to store the keepers.
     -Prioritize your items and start from the ground up keeping eye level and reach height your top priority item space.  This makes them more accessible and easier to keep organized.
     Example:  My vacuum is used once a week and my t.v. trays needed to be put "out of sight, out of mind" so we could have dinner at our kitchen table.  So I put them out in the garage right next to the door.  Then that way they are still in reach but they are not in the way.

3.  Be patient and give yourself time to dive in and focus on the closet or area you are reorganizing.
     -The more you rush yourself the more crap you will keep and the less organized it will be.  You will be back to square one before you know it.

4.  Try to keep a color scheme.  I know that sounds crazy BUT the more uniform closets look the more organized they look.  Rather than your eye looking at twenty different colored boxes your eye has one or two colors to look at.
  So, with those simple steps plug away.  Here is my before picture:

  Total CHAOS!  This seriously made me crazy every time I opened the door.  Now I can relax and know I can open the door and find this:

  For the items on the top shelf I labeled them.  It gives it a little decorative touch.  Here is a close up:

  Now it's your turn.  Happy reorganizing!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Fitness Friday: My Favorite Workout Equipment

  One way I (and my husband) simplified my life is by bringing workouts home.  Rather than going to the gym, (which we hardly used and then had a huge guilt trip) we decided to take control and create our workouts with our own resources around us.  Why not right?  So, of course we bought some minor equipment/accessories (my husband prefers to call it equipment) so we could better our work outs.  These are my favorite things to use:

1.  My blue workout/yoga mat. This is about an inch thick!  This was $30.00 BUT check Ross or Marshall's because they had them for half that.  I found that out after.  However, having hardwood floors it's totally worth it.
2.  Hand weights.  I have 3 lbs and these are great to add to a lunge routine.
3.  Jump rope.  This will give you serious cardio and a great boost right before a run.  Plus it rolls up nice and neat.
4.  Elastic Band.  This is an amazing multi piece of equipment.  You can adjust it just by your stance on the band.

  There you have it!  I have all of this in my living room closet where I can grab it and start working out.  Keeping your workout equipment where you can easily access it will keep you using it more.  Happy workout!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Simplify Your Life Week

  I have been missing for a couple of weeks but with good intentions.  I have been gearing up for this new month and some great projects that I think everyone will like.  
  To start things off this month it is National Simplify Your Life Week.  For 7 days I will blog about the things I have done to simplify my life.  From de-cluttering my closet, reorganizing the tiny spaces to sharing ways I simplify my mind and body.  
  So, to start the week off I will show you how I reorganized my movies.  Both my husband and I don't really buy the collectors editions of DVD's so when I decided to take them out of their cases and into paper sleeves I didn't have a hard time parting with the clutter of the cases.  For those of you who do have some of those collector items you can always get rid of the cases of the ones that are not collector's editions.  My friend did that and even though she had quite a few that she wanted to keep in the cases she still made a ton of room from the ones that she put into sleeves.  I cut the picture from the case and glued it to the front of the sleeve.  I saw this idea on Pinterest.  I think that they used the clear plastic sleeves and just slipped the picture into it.  This would save you time.   Then I alphabetized them and put them in a canvas bin.  Of course I went through and got rid of the ones I had doubles of or just didn't like.

  Above is a picture of the before disaster.  Over 200 DVD's and they are all pretty now.  Check out the picture below to see what a little simplification can do...

  WOOOHOOO!  I feel so relieved.  This has been on my list of things to do for a long time.  I had done this with some other movies a long time ago but not with my favorites or with putting the picture on the front but I am glad that I did it.  Happy simplifying!