This and That

This dress arrived on my doorstep this week and I’m in love! It fits perfectly, and can easily be worn for work or that date night that people talk about.

J and I finished the puzzle we’ve been working on…

And so I found him the next day with all of his imaginext items out, now that he isn’t getting up to work on the puzzle. I guess he hasn’t outgrown them quite yet:

My favorite blood orange margarita is in season at our favorite taco place:

And like everyone else in America, I’m currently finding the joy of organizing in my house (although let’s be honest, I’ve always found joy in organizing):

While I didn’t pile all my clothes on my bed, I’ve gone through all of my items in my closet and drawers, and I’m slowly dealing with the other clutter drawers in our house. I’ve also got the boys cleaning their drawers out as well! By the end of the year our house is going to be at a super organized level.

And finally, I put up our Valentines decorations, so our house feels very festive!

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Drawer re-organization

I’ve been doing a bit of small scale re-organization, cleaning out cabinets and drawers that I’ve stuffed random items into, or just overly collected bobby pins:

I had been trying to figure out a way to organize this very slim, but deep door, and I found this at Target:

So, I used the smallest three in the drawer:

And then for the other two baskets, I straightened out the cabinet under my sink:


Drawer and cabinet transformed!

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Pantry refresh

Several years ago, I overhauled and straightened up our pantry. However, as of late, it was in quite a bit of disarray:

I purchased just three new baskets and a clear can holder from Target, tossed all of the expired food, and did some serious re-arranging:

I also did some re-stocking of pantry items for back to school. Extra snacks, canned veggies, beans, pastas, and rice make it easier to figure out quick weekly meals and prep lunches. I also labeled the bottom drawers (which you can’t see in the picture), so the boys can quickly find items they use often and put things away.

And afterward is was back to work on our sails:

For the Cub Scout raingutter regatta!

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Linen closet refresh

As I mentioned last week, I spent half a day re-organizing our linen closet and the boys’ linen closets. You can see my original organization here and here. I decided to re-organize them because J figured out how to unlock the child proof handle on the door and I decided that all of their medicine and anything we didn’t want them messing with needed to be moved.

Thus, their linen closet is now storage for towels, beach towels, spare sheets, and items like shampoo and toothpaste.

And then I purchased a bunch of new plastic drawers and re-organized and sorted through all of our medicine and the boys for our linen closet:

It is a lot easier to find things now and it gave me an opportunity to purge old make-up, etc. and get everything cleaned back up!

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J’s closet refresh

Closet BeforeAfter one day of J’s bat cave falling out of the closet as he was trying to open it and then getting stuck in the door, I realized his closet had gotten out of control. This picture is actually after we removed an additional play tool bench from the closet as well. As sad as we were to admit it J had quite a few toys in his room that he had outgrown. In addition space in J’s room is at a premium as his room is quite a bit smaller than A’s. Thankfully, my sister and her family were headed to IKEA….

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Closet Re-Do

JThis seems like just yesterday…

J is almost at the point of needing to move from his converted crib/toddler bed into a full on big boy bed. His toes are almost at the edge, and every time I see him in the bed, he just looks more and more cramped. With that in mind, I know that we are going to have to set-up a larger bed, which means that a lot of the items that are in baskets and buckets around his room are going to need to be moved.

I’ve been trying to think of a good way to update his closet, but because of a few factors (utility items that we have to be able to reach, mainly) we can’t do a full closet system. After doing lots of web surfing for closet ideas, I was actually inspired by our re-do in our garage and came up with this:

Closet Re-DoThis is a basic metal shelving unit from Lowe’s. It’s build allows for easy securing into the wall with anchors. I couldn’t believe that this would actually fit in his closet, but after measuring, I found that it will with room to spare!

Which gives me room on one side to put this:Closet Re-DoThis will allow me to still make use of his soft sided boxes, and his current cube system will get moved out to the garage for outdoor storage options.

There is still room at the top of the closet, so I can move his wire shelving up about five-ten inches and that will allow for some extra storage (I’m thinking right now about using it for a certain person’s game system items that are taking up A LOT of space in our closet right now).

It’ll be several months, I’m sure before we get it all put together, but I will definitely post an update when it is complete!

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Spring Cleaning: Laundry Room

This past weekend we started doing some spring cleaning around the house. B fixed a broken GFI outlet and cleaned out the drain in the boys bathroom. I started work on my annual cleaning behind the dryer…in which a 1 hour project became 5 hours.

Typically these steps should take you less than an hour. However, if you calculate in time addressing small children questions, needs, etc. and that your builder apparently put a non-standard dryer hose out vent…it may take you longer.

Here are my basic steps.

1. Move out your washer and dryer and unplug the dryer.

2. Remove the lint trap and clean it (and by clean it I mean wash it in warm water and soap…just wiping it off never fully cleans it). Set aside to let dry.

Lint Trap Cleaning3. Then I clean up the walls and floor behind the dryer with a magic eraser of any marks:

Clean up Marks4. Wipe down the back of the dryer with a microfiber cloth (this helps prevent static build up: Wipe down dryer5. Then you want to vacuum (floor, plus baseboards), then wipe down the baseboards with a damp sponge, swiffer, and mop the area.

Mop floorsMop Floor6. Clean out the dryer hose (or if it is really bad, you can replace it for about 10-15 dollars…check the size increments to make sure it fits):

Dryer HoseI clean it by tapping all the dirt out, and then vacuuming it several times. You can also pay to get it professionally cleaned, but if you clean it annually it helps prevent build-up.

7. Make sure you also vacuum the dryer vent export from the laundry room, and from the outside:

Dryer Vent8. Lastly move everything back into place, do a cleaning of the rest of the laundry room floor and baseboards (as you did behind the washer and dryer, and I spray Febreze allergen (no this is not an ad for that…I wouldn’t begin to know about ad stuff of that kind) on the carpet, in the laundry bins, and the foot stool the boys sit on to put their shoes on. I also switched out all winter items and replaced with summer necessary items, and I re-stuffed the foot stool to refresh it.

Foot StoolLaundry Room RefreshClean and Refreshed!

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