Thursday, November 15, 2012

Time to organize

When we went to Michigan the other week and saw Alex's and Aly's brand new house stocked with their brand new wedding gifts, I was motivated to come home and organized all the tired old sh*t we have around here. Is there anyone else who thinks that after you've been married for several years decades you should be able to get all new stuff? Don't get me wrong - I want the same husband, and I'll keep my Kitchenaid, Cuisinart, Calphalon, and - well, that's about it. Just donate it all and start over with a new toothbrush holder, sheets, Tupperware, placemats; things that match - you know what I'm talking about.

Aly wrote about how she is organizing her life (check it out; she's pretty amazing), and one thing that really struck me is she talks about doing the little things that take less than a minute but will make your life so much happier. For me, it is coming down to a clean kitchen every morning. I am the worst about leaving stuff scattered about surfaces - there are magazines, mail, the calendar, and 2-3 pens on the kitchen table most of the time. I've made the effort to clear all the surfaces, wipe down the countertops, and empty the dishwasher before bed, and it really has made a difference. (Another bad habit is that I don't put my shoes away, but that's for another post).

Step one to organizing my life was to fix the pantry. It's just a little 24" (I measured) closet pantry, and I clean it out every six months or so. By cleaning it out, I mean doing one shelf at a time and hoping there is a food drive coming up because really, how many cans of refried beans does one family need? This time, I took everything out and rearranged items in a way that made sense. (Which means I'll probably never find them). For example, I have about seven different kinds of rice - arborio, sushi, regular, white, basmati, red, and a few packets of 90-second rice - which are now on the same part of the same shelf. (I swear that I was Asian in a previous life. I can do without pasta, but I LOVE rice). In addition to reorganizing, I took some of the staples that had been in ziplocs or boxes and put them in labeled containers. (A + A have all nice new matching containers; I just used what I had).

Next step was the Tupperware cupboard. I took everything out and made sure that each bottom had a matching top and vice versa. Any part that didn't have a mate went into recycling.

Then it was on to the island, the repository for bowls, small appliances, and baking stuff like muffin tins, springform pan, angel food cake pan, tart pan, etc. You'd think I do a lot of baking, but I don't. I just have the stuff.

Why yes, those ARE two waffle irons on the upper left. You never know when you'll be in the mood for Belgian or regular waffles.
My spice cupboard and drawer were next. My friend Debbie laughs that I have my spices alphabetized, but seriously, how can you not? While they've been alphabetized forever, they were not easily accessible; now they are, thanks to the two little baskets I've had since the early '90's, when that color was popular. 

The herbs and small bottles get their own drawer
So that's what I've been doing the last few days because I didn't want to be seen in public with this eye. The worst part is the scab on the underside of my eyelid from the cauterization. We found that the semi-cure is to put a daily contact in so that it protects my cornea. It is actually way better (Dwight doesn't recoil in horror anymore), although I carry around a kleenex in my sleeve like a grandma because I keep having to dab the tears. My favorite optometrist has been checking in frequently. If you're in Omaha and need someone to take care of your eyes, go see Steve. In addition to Steve, these guys have been taking care of me:

My lap was full!
Okay, now for some food. Breakfasts:

Oatmeal with golden raisins, almond-coconut milk, and PB. Coffee was also involved
PB bagel thin, strawberries, 1/2 diet cranberry juice and 1/2 Trop 50, and of course, coffee
This hot and sour soup is so good. I do love me some carbs. By the time I was done with the bowl, my nose was running, just as it should with a good hot and sour soup.

Because I felt like I needed some protein
Basmati rice, grilled tofu, and leftover roasted B. sprouts
I haven't cooked much lately; Dwight has had meeting this week, so last night was the first time I didn't have popcorn for dinner. I had made a Costco run, which means rotisserie chicken:

And grapes and Brussels sprouts as well....
Now for some finds. You know how I said I needed to eat yogurt while I'm on an antibiotic? Emmy reminded me of probiotics in pill form, and while I was looking for them at Target, look what I saw:

Probiotics in CANDY FORM!!!!!
Yogurt and the best almonds ever for a snack
I'm on to my next organizing project: the cupboards in the basement where I store all the serving pieces. I bet there will be pictures!



  1. I don't believe you leave anything scattered anywhere! Your organizational skills inspire me! I have been maintaining it well, but it scares me to death to think about going through our basement and all of stuff. Multiple day project in the near future.

    Kitchen looks great! Nice work, pirate.

    1. Arrrrrrr! Seriously though, I will admit to being organized task-wise, but not so much house-wise. But I'm working on fixing that.