Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday Five: Best Organizing Resources


I was born with the organizing gene. I like to look at nicely organized stuff. I also like to search for the best organizers out there. Every space has different challenges and therefore, different solutions. Part of the fun for me is in figuring out how to organize a space. I call on my own experiences, but also on those of others. Here's where I go for inspiration:

1. Real Simple - Every month, without fail, they have something related to storage or organizing that makes me go hmm. I subscribe to the magazine but you can also check it out online, they have a whole tab devoted to organizing.

2. I Heart Organizing blog - I like her writing, approach, and her photos. And of course her free printables.

3. An organize search on Pinterest - I like to gloss over these pics. Some of them are insane, and the systems are so elaborate that there's no way in hell anyone is sustaining that level of organization, but it's fun to look anyway. And something I see might inspire me.

4. Friends - I am always interested in how others organize their lives, and I ask them about it. I learned this travel test tube trick from my friend Mimi. 

5. Unclutterer -  A place for everything, and everything in its place is our gospel. Hello, that's my mantra. I don't like the set up of the site but I do like the information so I access it on Facebook and Twitter.

As you know, this month's Choose Your Own Adventure Goal Setting Challenge theme is Organize. How are you making out? I'm halfway through my goals and I feel pretty confident that I can turn this mother out this weekend. Speaking of this weekend, 
happy happy birthday to my long-time friend Gwen of Confessions of a Gila Monster on Sunday.

Please share your favorite organizing resource in the comments so I can check it out!

Have a great weekend.

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You may also like Top 10 Tips for Decluttering and My Top Five Organizing Tips.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Thursday Thoughts

1. All of you who know me or have even met me once know I am totally fine with telling people what to do. I excel at it. I don't like that men who do the same thing are called strong and secure and it's always a positive while women are called bossy and it's a negative.
Via Women Working
2. I'm back into The Wire and I'm in deep. I ripped through season three this past week. Welcome back to the streets, Avon Barksdale.
Via
3. Sunday night I made a Minnesota hot dish, what I'd basically call a casserole. My lovely native Minnesota native friend Steph at Insert Classy Here turned me on to this term and basic ingredient idea. It's a great comfort food. It's not a light dish by any means, although I could've definitely done it lighter and less processed. I was not in the mood for that on Sunday.
4. So, I have self-diagnosed a tailor's bunion on the outside of my right foot. Is that a sign of true old age, when you need to go to the doctor for a freaking foot situation? Excuse me while I find a PODIATRIST. Even the doctor category sounds old lady.

5. I go back and forth on the whole prisoner rights thing. If you are a rapist, murderer, or pedophile, I tend to let my rage trample over the advocate for humane treatment in me. Regardless of how I may flow on this, one thing I know is if you are Charles Manson, you sure as fucking shit should not be allowed to get married in prison. As a matter of fact, not one fucking incarcerated person need be getting married. How is this a right for those behind bars? Wait until you get out to waste some administrator's time. And if you're never getting out, guess what? Single city, sweetheart. I mean, for shit's sake. Prisoners can marry but gays can't in some states? That's some bullshit right there.
Via
6. Dilworth Plaza looks like it's from the future. When is this rink opening? I'd like to watch people face plant during my lunch hour.
7. When I got my makeup done for the wedding Friday, Kristi used this eyeliner and it never moved all day. $17.50, not bad for an excellent gel liner.
8. While I was picking that up, I also went looking for a new pair of gloves. I stood behind some woman dicking around at the register for 10 minutes before the transaction even started. TEN MINUTES. She was going back and forth and shopping, and the line was growing and shifting and grumbling. When the cashier tried to take other people, she was all pissed off. So sorry the rest of us did our shopping before queuing up, you rude ass ho. This is why I do all of my Christmas shopping online. I peaced out and went to listen to the Wanamaker organ, currently covered up in anticipation of the Christmas Light Show.
9. I have an illness this week and that illness is afternoon coffee. Damn.

10. E-card of the week. Yes, you do see this card here every year. I know, to each their own. To me, the thing that makes Christmas magic is that it happens once a year in a whirlwind short period of time. I like to Slow down. Savor.

Finally, happy happy birthday to Steph @ Not Entirely Perfect. Go send her a good wish.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Everything She Wants - Under $30

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Dear friends: Sorry I felt the need to use a very crappy video still for the opening graphic of this post. That 80s hair, you guys. It forced my hand. I love Wham, and that I will not apologize for...this song is decidedly not Christmas-y but the title is good for a list of generic gift ideas, no? Have a listen to the song and peruse the list over a cup of coffee.

Everything She Wants by Wham! on Grooveshark

While I think it's too early for Christmas decor and am puzzled by the eleventy billion Christmas trees in my Instagram feed right now (staunch after Thanksgiving lady here), I like to get the commercialism out of the way so I can enjoy the sights, sounds, and company of framily during the season.

I like to decorate, visit, and bake in December. I do not like to shop for specific items in December, or even go in big stores at all. I do all of my shopping online so I can earn cash back through Ebates. If you haven't signed up for Ebates, you're missing out! Here are some ideas under $30 for the ladies in your life. Some you can see by the photo I already use/own. I always think what brings me joy/is useful/makes life better, and then I tend to gift that around.


Kate Spade NY Reusable Shopping Bag from Nordstrom - $16 and close enough to Treat Yo'Self. It comes in black & white polka dot too.

Earth Therapeutics Soft and Smooth Shut Eye Sleep Mask - $9. Package it with some lavender essential oil and a pair of cozy socks and send your gift recipient off to dream land.

Dirty Dancing DVD - Yes, everyone should own it on DVD in case the apocalypse happens and all streaming systems go down. It's $4.99 on Amazon. Stuff it in everyone's stocking. Be my baby. Nobody puts baby in a corner. Etc.

Not Your Mother's Hair Basket - varies, $5.99 each, catch a buy one get one 50% off at Ulta! I love the Clean Freak Dry ShampooBeach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray, and Smooth Moves Frizz Control Hair Cream. Pack it with some awesome pony tail holders and fire away. Hair needs gifts too.

Yes, Please by Amy Poehler - $18.20 hardcover. I haven't read it but I'm picking it up at the library tonight and I can't imagine it will miss the mark. Amy rules.

For the FNL Fan - $27. Tim Riggins approved.

Muji Acrylic Three Drawer Case - $24.75. Or the two drawer. Or the five drawer. Or any of them. They're sleek and they hold makeup and other small lady things well. I freaking love my Mujis.

Shotgun Lovesongs by Nickolas Butler - $18.92 hardcover. This book spoke to my soul.

The Body Shop Vitamin E Body Butter - regular $20, always on sale. The only thing that gets my skin through the gross scaly winter.

Pug Cosmetics Bag - $15. For my pug peeps. Come on, it's funny.

Echo All Over Touch Gloves - $28. I own them in light chartreuse but love all the colors. They're warm too.

Who doesn't love a coffee mug? This one is one I personally own from OnDisplayGraphics on Etsy. She's got a lot of cool mugs. Pop a bag of coffee or a box of K-Cups in the bag and you're good to go.

What are some gifts you're giving aside from peace, love, and your presence this year?

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Spinach Casserole

This recipe is a super simple side. I adore it and love it all the time but definitely on Thanksgiving.

The original recipe calls for two cups of cheese, two cans of cream of celery soup, and a half cup of melted butter. I have a tropical vacation coming up in less than a month and my ass doesn't need to be any fatter, so I made a lighter version. I'll present both.

Regular Version
2 cans cream of celery soup
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup onion
3 cups croutons
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 boxes of frozen chopped spinach, thawed, water squeezed out
2 eggs, beaten

Light version
Cream of soup substitute (one of the directions on the right is one can, so two of that, you can google this to come up with your own if you don't like this mix)
1/2 cup onion
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup shredded cheese (your choice, I used cheddar)
2.5 cups of croutons
2 boxes of frozen chopped spinach, thawed, water squeezed out
1 egg, beaten

Directions
If you are using cream of soup substitute, follow directions. Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit before adding to other ingredients. 

Mix everything together, put it in a greased 13x9 casserole dish, and cook in a pre-heated 375 oven for 40 minutes. You can halve this and make it in an 8x8 as well. 
Light version
***********************
Haikuesday
Thanksgiving food talk...
What is your favorite dish?
"All" is a reply.
**********************
What's one of your favorite sides that withstand lightening up well?
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Monday, November 17, 2014

TWTW - wedding style

1. Early dismissal on Thursday for Aubrey & Stephen's rehearsal dinner featuring great people, good food, fine wine, love, excitement, and freaking snow. On November 13. How about no?
2. Not invited to the wedding, they got me up early on Friday in protest.

3. The lovely ladies of Sensational Scissors hooked us up with hair and makeup and kept us to our schedule. By 1:30 we were off in a limo towards Normandy Farm courtesy of Aubrey's mom.
4.  What a lovely venue, really. My old friend Susan from a former job works there and hooked MFD and I up with a lovely room. The entire staff was gracious and accommodating and the grounds were beautiful, but the true star of any wedding is always the gorgeous bride, and Aubrey was indeed that.
5. And then they were wed. MFD performed the ceremony and he was great. I love love love this photo. I can't wait to see the professional shots, our BFF Evan of Evan Leslie Images was awesome capturing the day. 
 
6. When you're in a wedding and you're me, you end up with 487 photos of yourself with others including your husband, grandparents, parents, siblings, aunt, DJ (our friend the awesome DJ Bill McCay), and walking into reception partner(hi Jared and Donna with the photobomb) and very few photos of the wedding details themselves, which were fabulous and all done by Aubrey. Pinterest would cry seeing her creations, everything was attended to and everything came out amazing. She put a lot of thought and creativity into this day and it showed.
7. Other miscellaneous shenanigans. It was a really fun, late night that culminated in my little brother picking my hair pins out of my hair in the parking lot at 3 a.m. 
8. I won't lie, Saturday was not pretty. Hashtag old lady status. After a morning of social things that I was not well equipped for, my Dad & Carol deposited me at home, where I napped most of the afternoon. Being social for so long takes it out of me, I'm not used to being nice for so many hours. My introvert tendencies called for a long period of recharging in silence. MFD got home around 5. We watched Dallas Buyers Club and some episodes of The Wire, laid around with the dogs and ordered Lee's Hoagies and that's all she wrote.
9. Not much in the way of food prep this weekend. Egg muffins with ham and cheese for breakfast, soup out of the freezer for lunches, bananas and veggies for snacks. 

10. Sunday consisted of 408720983 loads of laundry, dog lounging, magazine reading, putting stuff away from the weekend, and fresh sheets. I love a Sunday in which you can shower and put a fresh pair of pajamas on.
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This wedding was a wonderful celebration of two people I love, with so many other people I love. You can't ask for much more than that.

Tomorrow: spinach casserole.
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