My Life, My Obsessions

Monday, July 28, 2008

So that's what color my counter tops are!

I have a list of things that I'm waiting to accomplish. My oldest starts kindergarten this fall and I have these naive thoughts involving me and tons of free time to do everything on my to do list. Then there's this little voice in the back of my head that whispers that in reality something always fills the extra time that I think I'll have. Summer (with my cute hubby at home) was a good example of that.

Already I'm planning a short trip right before school starts, wisdom teeth coming out the next week, I've promised to buckle down and finishing editing my dad's book, more dental work, and cleaning my entire apartment. This is the first summer since graduating from high school (1996) that I haven't moved. So now I'm going through this "I need change" stage. I'm used to dejunking every summer thanks to a move. Now that I don't have the move, I still feel the needed to dejunk and change things. I tried moving around the furniture in the living room, but I almost broke the couch. It's a cheap futon and about 5 years old, but we're hoping it will last a little longer.

So today I decided that I didn't have to wait until school started to start cleaning. It's been a while since I last went on a freakish clean-a-thon and I found that I've missed it. Don't get me wrong. I hate the day to day kind of cleaning, but I love the deep cleaning that involves taking everything apart and washing things that haven't seen the light of day in months or possibly the even the entire year that we've been here.

I started in the kitchen. I've been jealous of my friends with their uncluttered apartments and empty counter tops. Of course I've been married longer than they have and have accumulated a fair amount during that time. I'd hate to see what it would be like if I hadn't moved frequently during that time. I'd be the lady on the news that has entire rooms full of junk. OK, maybe not. Luckily I'm not sentimental enough to become a pack rat. Not that you'd guess that by my kitchen. Here are the before pictures.

I actually started my cleaning in the pantry which spilled over into the hall closet. I took everything out, wiped it out, redid the shelving (it doesn't have enough built in shelves so I stole some from the hall closet), then put it all back in different places. I even put extra stuff in there that wasn't there previously. I like doing things like this because it really confuses my husband. He wanders around the kitchen looking for something that I moved until I feel sorry for him and point him in the right direction. In case you think I'm a mean spouse, I did give him a tour of the reorganized kitchen. It's not my fault that he didn't pay attention to where I relocated the bread.

After the pantry, I cleared off the counters and found/created space for everything somewhere else. Most of it is now in its proper place, except for the pile of papers that I need hubby to go through with me. It was relocated to the desk which is also on the dejunk/reorganize list. My last step was to fix what I did to the hall closet when I stole the shelves from it to put in the pantry. It now looks better than it did before. I'd like to say that I'm done with the kitchen, but I still need to clean out the fridge and the microwave. At least the visible parts look better.

Throughout the process, my kids continually pointed out that I was making a huge mess. Funny how often you have to make something worse before it starts looking better. It wouldn't have been so bad except the kids got a hold of the potato pearls. (Think fake mash potatoes in pellet form). They're stale, but the kids like to eat them. I decided it was easier to hand them the container (visible in the second picture) and let them have fun while I cleaned. This of course meant that I had a lot more to clean when I was done. They had a blast making "birthday cakes" and pouring it into lids and other containers. Luckily they were on a tile floor and the clean up wasn't bad. Although it would have been easier to sweep up if I didn't have a two year old walking through the mess and trying to take away the broom. At least I have a cleaner, more organized kitchen now.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Toy Drive

It's that time of year. The third annual Toy Drive is going on right now. You can read Kristie's blog for more information or read the post on Crochetville. All toys are being donated to the University of Minnesota Fairview Childrens Hospital and will be delivered on August 12. If you miss that date, Kristie will be there later in the month and can take any late arrivals then.

Here's my donation. There are a couple of items that aren't visible.

Now I just need to get to the post office. This is one of those times when a second car would come in handy.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A Headband or a Necklace?

I'm constantly looking for an easier way of keeping my daughter's hair out of her face. Clips are easy, but don't stay in. I thought a headband would be easy and she could do it herself. Sounded good to me. I forgot that I was dealing with a two year old.

I bought some sparkly elastic in the bead aisle at WalMart. It was cheap and came in an assortment of colors. So I grabbed the pink (my daughter's favorite color) and my crochet hook and went to work. I didn't follow a pattern. I chained the length I needed (it's stretchy so I did a little shorter than the circumference of her head), sl st to make a circle, and ch 5. Skip 2 ch, dc in next ch, ch 2. Then skip 2 ch, dc, ch 2. Repeat all the way around. Sl st in the 3rd ch of the ch 5 from the beginning. Nothing fancy, but it was fast and looked nice.

Now the 2 year old part of the story. I showed her how to wear it in her hair. It fit great and matched the majority of her outfits (like I said, she loves pink). She was really excited about it and left it in her hair for a few minutes. Then she discovered that it made a great necklace. She won't leave it in her hair now, instead she pulls it down and insists that it is a necklace. Of course she's stubborn about it as only a two year old can be.