Sunday, February 27, 2022

More Organizing- Pour A Cup Of coffee

I've received a bunch of questions about organizing 
so for what it's worth, here is some more of how I do it.
Take whatever you can use from me, as goodness knows,
 there are thousands of fancy ideas out there on how to do it
 while spending lots of money. 
I know this is pretty mundane stuff but maybe it'll spark an 
idea that will work for you, and it really 
answers some questions for some folks.  

The week we moved in I added these two shelves in the wasted 
awkward space next to my dryer. I'm not a fan of having appliances out
on the counter, not even the toaster. Most of them are stored here along with 
misc items.
top shelf -Sheet pans and broiler pan upright far left, 
magic pot, food processor, kitchenaid
2 shelf- hard to see but large electric griddle, toaster, 
bin of tall liquid freezer storage containers 
3rd shelf - bin of different colored drink coolers 
used when kids come, (less dishes) bin of freezer meal containers, 
lidded box of vacuum sealer bags,  
battery storage container on top 
Laundry baskets- (see later)

Same shelves
Note  the pole I added for wet clothing hangers 
You'll see where I hang later

View above those shelves.
ceiling was slanted so perfect spot for wraps storage.
I'm slowly editing these out for reusable as I can afford.
2nd shelf you see with basket holds all the misc oven bakeware,
cake pans, microwave bacon pan, muffin tins and the like.
White basket holds silicon baking mats and dough rolling mat.

Light on small shelf below so that I can see the laundry baskets
on the floor one for kitchen towels, the other for cleaning cloths

Two top baskets - one holds the wood letters for my large message board
and the other my spice grinder, coffee grinder, rice cooker

Middle shelf has crockpot/ air fryer thing and my blender
small shelf below holds vacuum sealer and detergent pods and dryer sheets. 
My son bought me the cute containers they say coffee tea sugar.
I didn't use on counter so I turned them around- win win

Continuing to the left
top shelf -specialty cake pans, misc baking stuff in large basket and my deep fryer pan
tucked in and on raised racks are serving trays, reusable paper towels, pizza peels
electric extra burner, pizza stone, and a favorite dansk pan I don't want scratched

bottom shelf has cooling racks, med - lg nested glass storage containers 
basket of small storage containers
a small bin of food processor discs and blades
2nd basket has padded hangers for wet clothes

On the wall are aprons, a bag of vacuum accessories, 
A pouch for zippered laundry bags for delicates
a pouch for flashlight and ice bag
a pouch for cleaning cloths and a basket for dryer lint so I don't have to 
walk to trash multiple times on laundry days and the kids just put on 
top of machine when they lived here so...

I mostly use this basket as my loads are small
and it's prettier than plastic

There were bifold doors here when we bought, that I removed, as
no one ever closed them, and coming in thru the garage meant 
BANG BANG BANG all dang day.
That metal hanging thing on garage door flips up and holds my 
line dry items perfectly.
One of my favorite very useful tools.
Walter's dog door to the garage, there is another in garage to the outside dog run.
He was trained to use this, but now uses when I'm not available 
to let him out the back door to yard.

Are you still with me? 
Here's the thing, after looking at all this
It may have occurred to you that I organize so stuff doesn't fall over
all the time, is easy to retrieve, and find. 
I cannot tolerate moving things to get to other things. 
When you are busy and that happens, 
it can be days before you return to that mess,
and even more mess has been added since ,especially if you live
 with other folks, 
and kids, well, nothing gets put away.

It's not fancy and photos are lousy and dark
but it was dark when I thought about talking about it.

Nearly every client I ever worked with that had homes out of control,
had horrible storage set ups and habits.
The way things were stored or organized -they were destined to fail.
If you constantly have messes, it is the fault of your system.
I refuse to spend quality time cleaning up after things that 
belong somewhere they are not. If your belongings have value,
then treat them as such.

Of course, purging the unused and unneeded goes a long way,
but that's another topic I've covered many times.

If you have the funds, hire help.
If you have the funds, buy beautiful storage things.
If you are like me, ( I never have extra funds),
use what low cost things you can afford
and make do. All the baskets and shelf helpers 
you see were all bought over time, 
years actually, and with coupons and from discount stores. 
No one run, full car load, to the container store for me.
In fact all those fancy $$ appliances - 
gifts from kids over the years.
Maybe so they have them here to use 
when they cook for the Stoddard gang? lol

Praying for Ukraine


Monday, February 21, 2022

Going Back To Normal - Pantry Edition

 Can we please normalize the pantry?

I enjoy IG, I like quite a few folks on it.

I learn a lot on favorite sites.

But when I see over and over these massive walk in pantries

where these young/youngish gals are showing pantries

that are larger than my kids rooms were, and many are

not even part of the main kitchen and all the storage that is already in there.

well.... ahem

My home is not small, nor grand, but four of us were just fine here

with a pantry behind a single door. Not a walk in, or designer

but tidy and well, see...

(Don't go counting the cocoas they came in sets lol)

With a little thought and organization there is far more than a months worth

of food in here. I will eventually repaint in here I think, as I never painted

the extra shelves I added when we moved in, and it would be fun to see some color.

That will be the extent of my redesign after 29 years. 

Because you can afford it, does not necessarily

 mean you should have it, or do it, or buy it.

Wants are not needs.

There is a young couple on IG

redoing an older home on their own and when they showed

their beautiful new double doored pantry cupboard they received numerous DMS 

and snarky comments about

how small it was. Those folks expected they should

 have blown out more walls or added on another room.

Adding on a 2nd bathroom when you have 6 people 

living under one roof ? If you can, yes.

But spending tens of thousands of dollars to be able 

to store a years worth of food, or show off  pretty containers?

I so admire the tiny house movement and if I could park one anywhere in CA 

near the kids that was affordable it would already be done.

If I could have downsized from my current home and afforded a small place here or CA,

it would have been done. But since I sacrificed

 and budgeted like a mad woman and paid off my home in nine years

 it made sense to stay put until I can't any longer. 

Climate, raw material usage, and trash floating islands in our seas?

Threats of dissolution of democracy, if not war; for me, would be a deterrent

to such expense etc. But that's just me I suppose. My age is showing.

Now because I've droned on about that, and because our temps

plummeted - here's a fun quick soup

on constant rotation in my house.

1 roasted chicken  meat removed
( I only had  TJ's meat today so I used that but flavor is better from store/home roasted)
4 cups or two cans of chicken broth
( you see 2 cartons because 1 was already opened)
2 cans cannellini beans
( I drain and rinse)
1 can or 1 3/4 cup water 
1/2 jar of Salsa Verde
Cilantro if desired

Heat it all up and let simmer a bit so 
chicken absorbs some of the other flavors.
I add fresh chopped cilantro to taste at the very end,
but if you hate, forget it.

Now you can add tortilla strips or roasted corn, whatever 
floats your boat. 
Today I did a dollop of sour cream


BTW -Finished up rows on quilt
now to join in stars and make a plan for completion WOOT!

and every night I put away Walter's toys
When I awake, I find 

Remember he goes to sleep under my covers 
before I even fall asleep. 
He is there when I awake. 

Does he sleep walk  play?

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

About Damn Time

A long while back I had mentioned I was digging
this project up out of the deep well of UFO's.
Well - that didn't happen.
I had all these log cabin squares completed but needed
 to make about another thirty.

I sold long ago the Bernina that these were pieced on,
and try as I might I couldn't reproduce them
to my approval on my Viking and with a different foot. 

Then my Viking went kapoot needing repair and the squares sat some more.

Yesterday I hauled them out and tried to figure
how to enlarge the quilt using these finished squares 
and adding borders or other piecing- whatever.

I remembered these pieced stars from even farther back.
These were made with hand drawn templates for petes sake!
So over twenty years ago. It was for a very ambitious quilt that bit the 
dust went my marriage imploded. 

Luckily my color pallets don't change much with the years,
as look how well this will work!

I did a few calculations and a primitive idea took shape. 

Dug out a new machine that I bought 10 years ago
 and had only used twice.

Took me hours to read the manual and figure how to thread etc,
as this one has many more bells and whistles.
 I have really lost my sewing mojo.
Use it or lose it - is very true. 

A couple hours this evening, and we are on our way.
Two rows are done and the third will be before bed.
Nine rows total, forming the center of quilt. 

There is one problem

This little bugger was not happy that his mama was ignoring him 
for so long. He is spoiled rotten thanks to covid and our isolation. 
There is a very comfy daybed up in the studio, but NOOOOOO
he wants lap time, lots and lots of lap time. 

I'm hoping that stating my quilt intentions
will force me to get this done or be embarrassed by failure.
Hold me to it alright?