Thursday, December 31, 2009

Really cool necklaces / scarf

This is not a home related  post.....but seriously, these are the coolest necklaces for winter !

to see more look at Nitca at Etsy

Monday, December 21, 2009

Saving homemade chicken stock

store bought stock is not cheap...and they are salty! The best stock is homemade. When I cook a turkey, or roast a chicken (even one from the grocery deli)

1. I stick the bones in a big pot and simmer for a few hours.
2. put in fridge over night, skim off fat the next day.
3. add carrots, celery, bay leaf onions, parsley, (if you have it) thyme, garlic, pepper and simmer again
4. strain and freeze in muffin tins for easy use.

I use my stock for everything: steaming asparagus, soups (duh), gravy, stir fry...wherever you might want some richly flavored water.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

organizing birthday cards

I have used a dutch birthday calendar for years. There are no years on it, only days. It hangs on the back of my bathroom door (that's the obligatory place where all true Dutchies put them)  and a box that birthday cards go into to lay in wait, but I now put it all together in this BIRTHDAY BINDER. It is divided by months and a couple of occasions at the back. Plastic page protectors go behind  each month (to hold said cards) and a month at a glance list of birthdays and anniversaries goes right behind each tab.  I love it.
...another great Martha Stewart idea

Monday, December 7, 2009

organizing belts

another great Martha Stewart idea. Those hooks shouldn't be too hard to screw in, right?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Closet organization - Idea for scarves and belts

If I had a wall in my closet, I would do this....what a great new use for towel rods! Add hooks to the rod for belts. Visible and accessible! Love it.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cool trip-logue

I love documenting family life. Years ago I remember hearing a a great lecture about raising kids. The psychologist said that kids (teens in particular) want to relate to a group. Parents want their family group to be the one they relate to so...coming up with ways to accomplish this have always been high on my list. Among the things we routinely did, visual reminders of  "We are a family that has fun together and love each other" has been important to me.  If I had seen this bulletin board years ago I soooo would have done this.

Organizing - Quick trip pill box

A great use for an old contact case!

Monday, November 30, 2009

New use for old eyeglass case...

your backdoor brain

great system for "out the door "reminders

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Need placecard holders for your Thanksgiving meal?

Use pumpkin colored paint strips!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Chic brag books

As a photographer, I love new ways to display photos. These would fit in a purse or sit on a desk and make a unique statement. Thanks for the idea, Martha S.!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Around the blog and back

I found a new blog I like.   It's called Organizing Life.
Photos motivate me more than text. I can see at a glance what she did and I love it.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Baby's Photo Flip File

Laminate some photos of  "faces in the family". and it becomes a great learning activity for an older baby or toddler for their eye hand coordination and visual recognition. A great toy to keep them engaged in a crib, at church, in the car (till they drop it and wail)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Monday, November 2, 2009

Girl's Accessory catchall

A flat frame bought on sale (of course) with added knobs and ribbon stapled to the back, corrals all the dodads! Love it!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

An Organized Glove Box??

Some people call it a jockey box..some people call it other things, but you know where I'm talking about....its that compartment in the car that when open, spills all over the floor!!  The photo of the coupon organizer says it all.  The, uh-hem, several times I have been pulled over by our local Georgia speed trappers, I have had to nervously fumble around the box for the license and registration. This will make ( would have made - it won't be happening again! ) retrieving all info faster. Add a section for receipts for car repairs, car maintenance etc. Voila! an organized glove compartment.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

"Cool" idea for freezing ground beef!

It's not often that I see a great new ideas for freezing food, but this is definitely one for the books, uh, blog.

Take a pound or two of raw hamburger meat, put it in a freezer bag and flatten and measure off portions with a chopstick!! When you want to use some (like make just one fresh hamburger just open the bag and break off however much you want to use. This is a really practical idea. I still love my gravel also though.

Grab and go Travel Laundry kit

for the car, in a suitcase, or just in your house....neat and together, just grab and go. While you're at it you may want to put in a stain chart also, for quick reference.

idea courtesy of  Martha Stewart

Friday, October 16, 2009

frame to tray!

pretty self explanatory!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

REALLY Cool Site for Black Friday

Americans   Click Here for Black Friday specials it gets closer to Thanksgiving,  to see what the big sales are at all the big stores.

No more slip and slide

...just elastic bands

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

new use for plastic easter eggs.....

No smash  "snacker keeper!"

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Kid Treat

no posts for a couple of days as our youngest son is getting married!! but I do love this idea for a birthday party or other kid special occasion.  These drink (7-up) stirrers are lollypops!

No headboard on your bed?

This idea from Marthat Stewart could be a temporary fix or a cheap permanent alternative. It's WALLPAPER!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tweezer Trap

One simple little magnet keeps those tweezers in plain view to grab in a second

(photo from Real Simple)

Monday, October 5, 2009

Bag box

I've kept grocery bags in tissue boxes for years. I use a "Kleenex Boutique" box however as they take up less space. They are stowed under every bathroom sink to hold bags for the trach can.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Travel shoe separator

I will never throw away another free shower cap!

This is just too brilliant! And I thought shower caps were just for covering up the end of cut watermelon  or covering rolls that are raising in round pans. Sheesh!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Get a grip!

Kids spill drinks....elastic bands help !

Tangle Tamer

I've done this for years. If you want to go the second mile you could write the length of the cord on the tube...OR...mark the one that is the perfect length for something like those Christmas lights that go on the mantle. I hate gobs of too long cord sticking out under the curtains that hang over the plug.!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Travelling light ! (something I never do but wish I could)

There are so many reason why this is practical for some people : travel, walking /jogging/ small purse,  no purse just jeans pocket...whatever.  It's just a cool concept courtesy of Real Simple.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Book "marker"

Some ideas are so simple and obvious they make you feel stupid that you didn't already think of it. For the next few days I'm going to post some of my favorite "Dang I should have thought of that"  ideas from Real Simple.

Just a simple return address sticker...DUH!!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Your own cyber style file

Here is a really cool site that I just found. It has a buzzilion interior/exterior design photos on the site. Click on the style you prefer and have fun poking around the photos. When you see photos you particularly like, you can create (takes 2 secs) a style file on this site for your current or future projects. It's easier than creating files within your "pictures" folder on your PC or I photo on a mac.  I like having files on another server.

When these types of sites first came out, you had to subscribe and pay for them and now they're free!

I think I'm going to create a virtual dream house.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Cheap Hair Detangler!

This is an "Oh my gosh, that makes so much sense, why didn't I think of that" idea. If I had thought of this years ago,  my daughters wouldn't wouldn't have a twitchy aversion to wet hair and combs!?!  When the girls were little I bought bottle after bottle of pricey Infusium hair detangler for shampoo time. I wish I had known to just do this...

Simply put 1 Tablespoon hair conditioner in a small spray bottle of warm water and detangle away! Easy peasy and costs pennies.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Skin care: drugstore steals

Click here for a great little video. Paula Begoun's favorite Beauty products. She is a long time expert in this field. and gives you the straight scoop. I bought her first book about 20 years ago.

Paula Begoun, author of Don't Go to the Cosmetics Counter Without Me, has spent more than 25 years testing cosmetics. Now, she's sharing a few of her face, hair and feet favorites with you. Drugstore steals, high-end brands and everything in between!

25 ways to save a bundle

...from Oprah's 25 ways to save a bundle. There are some great ideas and links here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Blog to Book ...finally !!!!!

This really is the coolest thing!!

I've been waiting for this!!!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

One idea leads to another...

So, remember the post about the best recipe book ever? cyber recipe book? Well I got to thinking the other day about the whole free searchable data base thing. (I really love my cyber recipe book by the way!)   So, I was straightening up a little work area I have in the family room. I like to be in there when family is there but I also like to get paper-y projects done, so I sit at a little work table and fiddle away.

I was looking at a project that had been waiting for me to get to it for a long time. It was just sitting there taking up valuable real estate in my shelf.

I have a really long and jam packed "quote file"; one of several actually. (This photo here is generic). I'm an obsessive collector of thoughts and ideas and sometimes its tricky to find them immediately.  I don't remember how I was going to organize it originally, but it dawned on me that I could save all this on my own "Quote blog" that is just for my use and then chuck the index cards. It's a no brainer project that's perfect to work on when the guys are watching some shoot em up tv show that I don't care about watching. 

It's searchable, so in the search box, I type "simplify, or faith, or style etc, and all the posts that I've tagged with that label pop right up.

Now I'm wondering what other "just for me" blog I can do next. Any ideas??

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Store Brand Taste Test Challenge: They're as Good as Big-Name Brands

read the whole article here

The October issue of Consumer Reports asks these sorts of questions and more while putting store brands in head-to-head competitions with national brands, using trained taste-testers to decide when—if ever—it's worthwhile to pay more. The conclusion: "Switching to store brands can be a painless way to cut your grocery bill."

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Cool Clips

I'm starting something new...clips of money saving ideas from newspapers and blogs that are of interest to those who want to money. I think I'll do this an a weekly basis. If you're interested in the title, clip on it to read the whole story.

8 ways to save money, and go green
ttp:// Bellingham Herald 

By Supriya Doshi - redeye I'm always talking about how going green can save you money. And it's true. If you're trying to cut back on expenses, ...

Cloth wipes help save money
Cloth wipes have great money-saving potential whenever families start to use them. For one child, three dozen wipes is sufficient. ...

In today's tough economic state, questions abound in a majority of America's households over the inflow and outflow of family funds. ...

Saving Money By Saving Food

I'd be willing to try it again, see if it saves a little money.” The green bags retail at about $10 to $12. and claim to be reusable. ...

It's a Deal: Free Kids' Dinners at IHOP

From now through September 17, IHOP is hosting a "Kids Eat Free" dinner promotion. Between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m., families will get one free kids meal with the purchase of an adult entrĂ©e at participating IHOP locations. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Organizing Recipes part 2

Going the second mile!
Here are some ideas to REEEALLLLY get your personal recipe book organized

Subdivide the categories: vegetables can be subdivided into potatoes, beans, peas etc

- Note recipes (that you use often) from other recipe books on the cover of each tabbed divider

- Make a list of family member's favorite meals (this comes in handy on their birthdays)

- Make a list of meals that work well for company

- Make a reference page for bumper crops; recipes to use when you have a LOT of berries, zucchini, tomatos etc.

- and finally, consider making a quick reference Meal Planning page: On one or two sheets of paper, draw lines to make 4 sections on each page. (I make a big +,) Title each section by however you plan your meals: Beef, chicken, pork, soup and sandwich, meatless, whatever. Write the names only of your favorite recipes under the appropriate section. You could also list good go-withs beside each entree if you'd like. You now have a good at a glance reference to plan meals quickly!

Other ideas:

- punch a hole in the put your favorite recipes on 3x5 cards and put them on a ring. Hang them from one of those easy stick hooks on the inside of a cupbaord door.

- Put your recipe cards on a Rolodex

- put your recipes on a blog which then becomes a searchable data base. I love mine! I call it my cyber recipe book. I now have acces to my favorite recipes from any computer anywhere I go. My daughters have access too. No more calls "Mom can you send me the recipe for..."

- I have a cooking journal. It's just a little spiral notebook that I use to write quick notes into of what worked and what didn't.

"...made asparagus with ..... tonight and we all loved it"

"had .... over for dinner and made ..... Next time I will make .... instead.