Finding the Joy in Cleaning

Let’s just say that housekeeping is NOT my forte. My house is efficient and well-organized so I never feel as though my less-than-perfect-tidiness is to my detriment, however,  there are always art projects spread out, musical instruments around and books and magazines on many surfaces. In short, our house looks LIVED-IN!

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However, my husband places a higher value on a tidy house, and in my effort to soothe his senses, I do try to put in more effort than I would if I were just living alone. Well the other day I had an interesting epiphany about cleaning that I want to share. After having cleaned the kitchen the night before, above and beyond what I usually do, I walked in the following morning and was “surprised” and delighted to see it so clean.  I had forgotten that I had put in a little extra effort the night before, but I LOVED how it looked.  That was when I had my epiphany: I should clean-up NOT for how it makes me feel while or directly after I do it (because usually it just makes me feel tired and upset that I’m not doing something more fun such as BLOGGING), instead I should clean-up for how it makes me feel THE NEXT TIME I ENTER THE ROOM. This realization has really helped out my point-of-view when I’m faced with cleaning.  I remind myself how happy I’ll be when I walk into the room next time and it gives me just the push I need to get it done!

I’ve also started imparting this philosophy to our child and she agrees that she likes to walk into a clean bedroom better than a messy one and she’s started picking up after herself more regularly! This lesson reminded me that often all you need is a little shift in attitude to create a positive change in your life, not just about big and emotional issues, but even for little ones like this.

Be a spark in the world!

(Top picture: TOTAL CHAOS on the dining table, Bottom picture: controlled chaos)

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Easy Earring Organization Hack

When my daughter started playing with my bowl of earrings I needed an earring organization option that would move my jewelry out of her reach ASAP. 

So I ran to my “miscellaneous hardware” box and found a random length of chain. Then I grabbed some aluminum/steel push pins, which I use instead of nails for everything from hanging artwork to having a handy place to hangup my dog’s leash, and simply hammered the chain into my closet wall. 

I had my closet lined with wood for easy hardware installation so you might have to use drywall anchors and screws, etc, if you can’t find a stud to hammer into. 
I’ve loved the ease this hack has allowed me of visually taking in all my earrings at once so much that it’s become a permanent part of my closet. I also love the industrial/creative look. It’s not fancy but it works brilliantly and cost $0 which are always signs of a good hack. 

  

Decluttering Your Kitchen: Choosing multi-tasking tools

It can be so easy to buy-in to super cool gadgets that only do one thing…especially in the kitchen.  I recently got rid of (aka: gifted to my brother and sister-in-law) some awesome, high-quality kitchen tools that I never used including a garlic press and a hard cheese table-side grater (like they have at nice Italian restaurants.)  I bought both of these items thinking they would save me time, but in reality they just took up space.  The flat-edge of my knife was always faster and handier than the garlic press and I tend to buy my hard cheeses pre-grated.

In general, I’m pretty good about not buying things I don’t need, but hey, nobody’s perfect.  So I have a little tip that helps me keep the kitchen clutter to a minimum: only buy tools that can do more than one thing.  Some products that I’ve owned that only do one thing and that I’ve donated or gifted include: a rice-maker, a bread-maker and a meat-grinder.  I was gifted all of these items, but literally never used them, so I found them a home where they could be used and appreciated!

For more on my multi-tasking kitchen tools, check out my short (about 2-minute) YouTube video on the topic.

Be a spark in the world!!!