Thursday, 13 September 2012

Packing and Cleaning

I have another full box to go to Goodwill. And our microwave died so it's going to the Goodwill recycling bin.  Did you know they take all those electronics you aren't supposed to put in the dumpster?  If it has a cord, they will take it.  Call to make sure. I'm not sure every single branch does it.  But lucky for me the one across the street from me does.

A friend has offered to let us stack boxes at his house until we find a place to rent. That will be a blessing because there is no way to clean up the old place with all these boxes here.  We waste all our time re-stacking boxes. I have painful deja vu about trusting a friend to do this in the past. She was dishonest and tried to keep my piano as a payment when I went to get my stuff back. I am trying to swallow those feelings of fear and hope this doesn't come back to bite me. But I have to do something to get off top dead center and move this project along.

We drove an hour and a half out to the desert yesterday to look for a rental. No luck so far. So now it's home again and back to cleaning again.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Can We Just Move Already?

I't's official, I'm packing to move.  Let the games begin.  I hope I can find a way to eliminate the stress and just get the job done without all the emotional turmoil. Odds are my next place will be even smaller if that is possible. So I'm kinda freaking out here.

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Uh Oh Here We Go Again

I was just notified this apt. complex goes up for sale again next week, which means walk-thrus by strangers. Ugh. So if ever I needed to unclutter it's now.  Unfortunately we are also having a heatwave.  Which means cleaning mostly at night. So much to do, so little time. We are looking for another place to live, but in the meantime, what do I do with all this stuff? Storage is out. We already have one storage unit that has cost us thousands of dollars over the years. $100 a month x 12 months is $1200. $1200 x 10 years is $12,000. The stuff in there isn't worth $12,000. I wish I had that money in my bank account.

Sunday, 5 August 2012

DIY Laundry Detergent

Today on Pinterest I ran across a recipe for DIY Laundry Detergent. I must try this. We always save the cat litter buckets so I'm sure I could mix some of this up in one of those or in a giant bowl and then I could make laundry detergent once a year and save not just money, but I won't be buying all those plastic and cardboard containers that laundry soap comes in. If I can talk my boyfriend into doing it this way, I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Sorting Things

I was just about to vacuum the hallway today when the vacuum fell apart in my hands.  I truly believe we need a new one but my boyfriend thinks it just needs the screws replaced, so we spent $10 online ordering screws and belts. I think the screw holes are stripped, which is why the screws fell out to begin with, but I'll try his way first. The vacuum is at least 10 years old and I think it is just worn out.

At least I got the dishwasher loaded. And I just sorted a bunch of stuff out of a laundry basket. The fabric went into a fabric box and the patterns went into a pattern box. I found 2 crochet hooks, some confetti, and some flat stones. The stones will go in the mosaic project bin since I'm into mosaics right now. I know it sounds obvious, but half the battle is grouping similar things together. There was half a ream of paper in there, so that went into the paper bin under my desk. I'll use the three hole punch on it and transfer it into my next junk journal to be used as drawing paper or scrap paper. I fell better now that that's done. And none too soon since my bed is now cleared off and it's almost midnight.

Mosaic Bird House work in progress.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Secret Pegboard

Now that I'm studying how to be more organized, it's amazing how I'm noticing things I never noticed before.  Someone gave us a  tool chest with 5 or 6 drawers. It's sitting in our dining room. I pass it 50 times a day.  Suddenly I noticed it has holes in the side just like a pegboard. So I bought some pegboard hooks and put a few on there, and sure enough, that's what it is. Since we got the thing used, I never knew that. Before 24 hours had gone by, my boyfriend already started hanging things on it. Cool.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Wreath Hangers on Pegboard

When a craft store had a 90% off sale I snapped up a bunch of wreath hangers. I used one, and the rest have just been taking up space. But recently I made that pegboard in the garage and it goes up quite high and I was wondering how to put hooks way up there.  So I'm cleaning the dining room, find the box full of wreath hangers and that little light bulb went off.  In a few minutes, I had hooked six of them over the top of the board and the broad hooks will be great for things like extension cords. One of the hooks was different though. It's for hanging over a door and having a wreath on both sides.  I'll have to find a special use for that one.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Overlooking the Obvious

After watching a fitness show I decided I was going to work out 45 minutes a day, six days a week for 60 days. Only I have no room indoors anymore to work out, so the alley is where I work out. So I get all set up, and realize I need both a clock and a radio. The battery in the garage clock is dead, so I run back inside to get a battery and the radio. I'm thinking a calendar and a noteboard would be nice too.
So I get all set up, I'm about 10 minutes into my workout, when my neighbor parks right behind me in the alley and sits there with his family in the car, Then my other neighbor does the same. Once again I'm feeling like a goldfish in a bowl. So I hang out for 15 or 20 minutes waiting for them to drive off or get out or something. Ugh. But while I'm standing there, I'm staring at the wide side of a steel file cabinet that's been sitting in that same spot since the day we moved in. And then it hits me. That's a great place for a magnetic board to write on with dry erase markers or I could put chalkboard paint on it and make a place to write things about projects.Talk about overlooking the obvious! Then I say to myself, how can I do it with stuff I already own? Magnets! I have lots of magnets parked on the fridge that aren't doing anything. So I close and lock the garage, and start to go in the house to get a calendar and the magnets and so on. Then the neighbors drive away (face palm).
I also grab some unopened tools to put on my new pegboard (see yesterday's post). I grab a lidded plastic container to put my radio on and a metal can to use as a pen holder and catch all because right now the pens and razor blades and little things are all just laying in a shallow box on top of the file cabinet. It seems silly to just put an empty container there to park my radio on, so I fill it with all those little sharp scroll saw blades and so forth. I write 'sharp' on it with a permanent marker. I fill the can with pencils and the new scissors I just unwrapped. I used the magnets to hold a sheet of paper on there for notes. And I used clear shipping tape to secure the calendar, being careful not to tape down the flipping pages. I put a new battery in the clock.
Just when I started to work out again, my neighbor came home again and left his car parked illegally in the alley and went into his garage. Sigh. At least I broke a sweat and got my garage more organized.

Friday, 3 February 2012

Turning the Dining Room Into a Sewing and Craft Area

Last night I was so burned out from pushing myself, that I swore I'd take today off and not do anything on a to-do list. I'm not sure why that worked but this morning I woke up so full of motivation, I leapt up and starting reorganizing the sewing room and archery workshop (i.e. living room and dining room). I realized I was not optimizing the natural lighting that I need so desperately to do fine work like beading or cross stitch or wood burning. So I drew a diagram of a better layout. The main issue is every area is full of boxes, inventory, supplies, junk, food, and tools. Every square inch is encumbered. So before I can move anything big I have to sort, clean, reorganize and discard. But so far in under 2 hours I've made great progress. But my hands are started to shake and the task is overwhelming me so I'm taking a break to recover. So much stuff and nowhere to put it.

And even if I get the big pieces moved, the boxes will have to be put back in the leftover space. So whew! If it was easy I would have done it already. I want to clear off my drawing table (which I haven't seen the top of in 2 or 3 years) and move it in front of the giant dining room window. If nothing else, my cats will enjoy snoozing in the window. Then I'm going to move the rolling tool chest and dresser into the spot where the drawing table now sits. I'm hoping they will fit. If not, I'll need to move another giant stack of boxes so I can slide the sewing machine over a foot. Thank goodness my boyfriend is here to move the things I can't budge.

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Storage Caddies and Other Ideas

I am up to my eyeballs in making things to organize my stuff. I just bought PVC tubing to make caddies to hold knitting needles, paint brushes, dowels, pencils and pens. I bought plastic chain to make a hanger to hang up hats, gloves, scarves and other accessories so they won't keep falling on the floor. I do have hat pegs in my closet but every time something gets pulled out of there, the hats get knocked down.

I also bought pegboard to make storage areas for tools like scissors and pliers.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Cubby Finds a New Home

Yesterday I put a coat of polyurethane on my 3 cubicle cabinet to protect the paint until I have time to collage it. I found it fits perfectly on my dresser laying on it's side. I am happy to have a cubby to put my library books in now. And all the stuff that was already on the dresser can now go on top of the shelf, if I wish to store them there. Half of it just needs to be put into boxes or thrown away. All the nice stuff was buried anyway. It's so much better now, and one of the cubbies will serve as my bedside table since I always need to set something down at night like my glasses and a book or a box of tissues.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Painting a Cubby Shelf Unit

In an effort to be more organized, I bought a 3 cubby storage unit yesterday. It was bare wood so today I painted it with Gesso and acrylics and used up some of my older bottles of paint to use them up and not waste them. It was warm outside when I started, but around 4 PM the clouds were making me pretty chilly so I finished for the day. As time allows I'm going to collage over the painting and make it a cool and special shelf for my art studio. I had to fight tooth and nail to get it. My boyfriend didn't want me to buy it because he couldn't think of anywhere to put it. I think I'll lay it across my dresser and use one cubby as a nightstand, and the other two slots to store my journals and magazines in. And I can then use the topside as a shelf for the things that are cluttering up my dresser right now.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Kitchen Shelf Uncluttering

Today my boyfriend was hard pressed to find more kitty treats on the shelf. I decided it was high time to purge that shelf of it's unloved contents.  So I got a big wicker basket and offloaded the shelf. I'd say about 1/3 of it went into the trash.  But I found a giant unopened bag of dried mushrooms and a package of unopened spaghettini. My boyfriend walked in and said, "Wow, I didn't even know we had those."

If you don't want to waste money, eat your packaged food in a timely fashion.

I also had to eradicate a number of spiders that decided to live behind those unloved boxes. 

Once the shelf was clear I used it to put all the canned cat food in one spot. I used the rest of the shelf for all the bottles of various cooking oils and sauces my boyfriend likes to use. Oh how he loves his Asian fish sauce and Hirachi sauces. It was also a good spot to park two standard cook books.

Sadly I never did find the cat treats.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Major Reoganization of Apartment and Garage

Our apartment complex is being sold so I'm cleaning like I've never cleaned before.  I'm trying to get all clutter in covered bins and boxes.  If we get to stay here, at least I'll be more organized. And if we have to move, then I will have less to pack when that day comes sooner or later.
I'm going to try real hard to keep all yarn under control.  If it falls on the floor or gets tangled in boxes of other craft things like wire, it's a nightmare.
Plus we just had to rearrange the garage to replace the hot water heater, so we still have those boxes to deal with. We have about 20 boxes stacked in the backyard that need to go back in the garage once we get the shelves put together.

Did I mention something is wrong with my left arm? It makes lifting boxes very painful, so unless my boyfriend is in a cleaning mood, there is not much rearranging I can do myself when it comes to heavy boxes or bulky furniture.  That puts me at a distinct disadvantage. After six months my arm shows no signs of getting better. I think I have a pinched nerve in my back by my shoulder blade and my Dr. was no help whatsoever. It even hurts to put a sweater on.
Here is a photo of the old hot water heater once the repairman got it out of the garage.