Saturday, July 25, 2015

What I've Been Up To

It's been a couple of weeks since I last posted, busy and productive weeks.  Let's see if I can remember what all I've been up to.

I'm on an organizing kick.  Spring cleaning so to speak, except in the summer.  I've been getting rid of clutter and putting things in order.  I hate clutter; I avoid having things I don't need or having things in the wrong places.  But with work and home and church and everything in between, things have fallen to the wayside and been pushed back on the priority list, until one day I looked and said, "Enough is enough!!"  It started in my bedroom closet.  I'd bought some clothes and was having trouble fitting it all into my closet.  It was starting to look messy and out of control.  One day I decided to go through my clothes and pull out anything that could be donated so that my closet wouldn't feel so cramped.  That was all that was needed to get me motivated.  I not only got a donation pile going, I organized all my clothes, shoes and purses.  I decided to take any "winter" clothes out (winter clothes in South Florida means a few long sleeve shirts) which meant I had to organize some of my dresser drawers to fit them in.  When I was done I felt like a load had been lifted off my shoulders (when in fact it had been lifted out of my closet).  There's actually room to move in my closet now, and I can see the floor again!  It got my adrenaline pumping for more.

This week it's been the kitchen.  I reorganized the pantry: there are bins to put bagged items in, canisters for snacks, pastas, flours and cereals.  The slow cookers were moved to the storage cabinet in the garage to make room for food containers.

The shelves outside the pantry were organized as well.  To make it easier for us to find things, I labeled everything with chalk labels so that the information can be changed at any time.  Now we can easily see where everything is without having to move everything or having five items fall on the floor trying to reach for one item.

Today I emptied out several kitchen cabinets, then put things away so as to make the kitchen flow better.  I moved all my spices to the cabinet on the left of the stove.  This was where I used to keep my spices originally, until we remodeled the kitchen and J insisted that cabinet should have a glass door.  I didn't want to keep my spices there anymore, because I was concerned it would look messy, so I put glassware there and put my spices in the cabinet on the right of the stove.  Problem is, I was using the left side cabinet as more of a display cabinet, which ultimately meant my cabinet space was reduced.  I'd already lost cabinet space when J decided that one of my cabinets should be converted into a trash bin (why do people who never cook or spend more than 2 minutes in a kitchen think they know better than the folks who actually use the kitchen?).  My kitchen was so cramped.  I had to move so many things around just to get my spices out because of the way the cabinets were made; the right side cabinets are corner cabinets, but they were not built as corner cabinets.

The cabinet on the left goes all the way back to the wall, but the one on the right has no access to that space, so if I need something from the back of the cabinet I have to empty the entire shelf to reach it.  Many of my spices ended up back there; cooking became a hassle of moving things in and out of the cabinet, creating more of a mess.  As you can see, I took the spices out of the cabinet and put canned goods there instead.  I had some of my canned goods in my kitchen and some in the storage cabinet in the garage; again, every time I needed something I had to go out of my way to find it instead of having it nearby.  I decided to put my glasses, mugs, and all our drinking cups in the cabinet above the sink.  I've ordered a 3-tier spice shelf/rack for my spices from Amazon.  It's bamboo so it'll match the color of my cabinets, and it'll keep my spices neat so I won't worry about what my cabinet looks like.  I'll have to remember to take a picture once I've got it all done.

I also cleaned out my refrigerator and freezer.  It's amazing how many things are hidden in the back of the fridge - items that have expired but we've forgotten they're there.  I found some file folder holders at Target for $3 that work perfectly for holding onions and potatoes.  I have to keep these in the fridge because, with our heat and humidity, they would go bad in no time.  This works much better and keeps them longer.

Speaking of heat and humidity, I don't know about the rest of the country but it is H-O-T in Florida!  Granted, it isn't as hot as it was last year, but it's still sweltering, especially in the afternoons right before the thunderstorms start.  We are in the rainy season now, getting hammered with rain every afternoon for about a half hour.  I cut the grass and it grows back in no time.  Allergies are on the rampage thanks to this weather.  My boys are especially susceptible; they are sneezing all the time, and while R has the itchy, watery eyes, E has eczema.  E has an appointment to see the allergist for testing on August 3rd.  He has to be off all allergy medicines for five days before he can be tested.  I'm not looking forward to that - he's gonna be miserable.

My daughter has been busy with work and school.  She is taking online courses to get certified in pastoral counseling.  Nothing like having a child who can tell you everything that's wrong with you :P.  Actually, she's learning a lot and has a strong desire to help teenagers and young people.  Her dream is to work with the A21 Campaign, an organization that helps victims of human trafficking.  I pray God would use her to help many suffering people to know they can have hope in Christ.

Of course, I did some shopping for beauty products during Bare Escentuals' Beauty Rush sale.  I actually wasn't going to get anything, and I didn't even place my order until late that night because I kept debating whether to place an order, but ultimately I got a Complexion Superstars set containing two mineral veils (one loose and one compact), a bronzer called The High Dive which is in a compact, a gorgeous highlighter called Bare Radiance, and a blush that I've been wanting for a long time called Vintage Peach.  I like peach colors more than pinks on me, and this one is a soft peachy tone that is very feminine.  It also has a blush brush.  All for $21 - just the blush retails for $18.  I also got a brush set that contains 5 brushes (2 face and 3 eye) and a gold-toned case for $18 (original price was $49). I decided to get these because we are going to Disney World in September and I wanted makeup that would be easy to bring along.  A lot of the Bare Minerals products are loose powders which makes them a little tricky to travel with, though I still plan on taking a few items.

Those have been the highlights of the past couple of weeks.  I'm going to continue focusing on organizing and purging.  I know, I've got to blog about it!  I'll keep it in mind ;).  Have a blessed rest of your weekend.

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