Monday, January 28, 2013

Repurpose a hanging jewelry organizer....

I am so excited about this little $7.00 Hanging Jewelry Organizer I found at Big Lots the other day.  On the tag it says great for earrings, necklaces, bracelets, watches and other accessories.  Well I am about 80% happy with the current setup I have for my jewelry (okay, maybe one day I'll be 100%), but I knew this little gem would come in handy for some organizational purpose around the house.

I re-watched Clean Freaks on HGTV and saw this great idea from Alejandra @, and implemented it today.  I too love to give gifts, and this hanging jewelry organizer is perfect for my gift tags and gift enclosure envelopes.

No more digging through the drawer searching.  Nice, neat, divided, and most important, visible!  I never realized how much I am an "out of sight out of mind" person, so this system works great for me.  I love to give gifts and go through a lot of gift totes and tissue paper.  When you tie on a tag, the recipient can re-use the gift tote, so you're recycling too!

Have a wonderful week!

Nancy :)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Got Herbs?

I have the most boring kitchen ever.  It is totally white, except for the stainless steel appliances.  Believe it or not, the wall color was even white before we painted it.  White, on white, on white.  Snooze fest.  No inspiration to cook, or clean for that matter.  Kitchen update plans: on hold indefinitely, because my bathrooms (all 3 of them) have got to come first, but at least they have some color!  What's a girl to do on such a limited budget?   First things first, ugly window coverings (multi-colored pastel horizontal blinds), out!  Paint - wall color same as the rest of the first level, indulgent mocha by Behr.

I know, you can't tell the paint color with these night photos I took, buy my kitchen during the day is so white, and so bright, you have to wear sunglasses in there in the afternoons.  No, seriously, you can ask my friend's Mom, my new and wonderful house-sitter and dog-sitter.  "Nancy, I had to wear sunglasses to work in your kitchen."  Okay, I have to wear sunglasses in there too, prescription none the less.....but I am not covering those windows and blocking a view of a pool, canal and my coconut tree!

My choice of window decor----fresh herbs!  I was so tired of paying $2.99 at the supermarket for a handful of fresh herbs, that would not last beyond 5 days, no matter what tricks I tried.  So this girl is growing her own, and in addition to the window herbs, I have a huge planter by the pool with a rosemary bush.

Here are some pictures:

right side of kitchen

L-R - Mint, Rosemary, Lemon Thyme, Oregano, German Thyme, Chives, Italian Parsley, Sweet Basil

See how white it is?  Why multiple utensil holders?  Those two corners that look like 4 drawers, NOT!  They are faux drawers, therefore I only have 1 large drawer, 3 small drawers, and 2 tiny drawers......

left side of kitchen, pantry left of refrigerator.....but you've seen that. :)

So, to tone down the white, I added color at the top, thanks to gifts, a trip to Hobby Lobby, Kirklands, Home Goods,  Marshalls, TJ Maxx..........

The wonderful hubby put shelves above the window for me.....oh yeah, Burlington Coat Factory.....

Coffee side of wine and coffee bar......

kitchen table

wine side of wine and coffee bar,  open at noon, DAILY!

Coffee and Wine Bar......again

last picture I promise, but who doesn't love a "Bon Appetit" sign?

Herb note ~ if you're a fresh dill fan, good luck pal!  I think you need more than a green thumb to grow dill, you need green hands, arms and legs.  For me, it just would not happen.  If anyone knows how to make it happen, please share your secret with me!

So, this is how I function in the world's most boring kitchen, I add some color, decorate, and keep wine very close.  After all, I do love to cook!

See you next week!  I hope your week is wonderful!

Nancy :)

Friday, January 11, 2013

DVD storage.......

I come from a family of movie lovers.  If you started talking movies with anyone in my immediate family, we could actually amaze you with our vast knowledge of useless trivia.  We are name droppers of actors of old and current movies alike.  We would kick your booty if all the Jeopardy categories were on movies.  It's just a fact.

All of the movies take up a lot of space, and I am honestly not willing to part with a movie I love.  It was great when the size of movies decreased from VHS tapes to our current DVDs.  I tried a binder method of 4 movies per page, but that was too hard to go through and search, and definitely difficult to keep alphabetized.

I decided to buy slim CD covers and transfer the movies over to them.  They are now very easy to alphabetize and flip file through a media storage box, and best of all, they take up 2/3 less space!  The below picture shows 10 DVDs vs 30 DVDs.  

I no longer have guilt over how much space my movies take up.  They are all contained in one cabinet now.  I will confess that I keep the covers of some of the Disney classics, but otherwise, buy buy DVD cover, hello more movies and extra space.

Do you have a movie lover in your home?  Maybe this will work for you.

Have a wonderful week!

Nancy :)

Friday, January 4, 2013

Man Cave Picture Ledge Wall......

Happy New Year!  I'm so sorry it's been so long since I've posted, but I have had a crazy few months.  Please don't give up on me!

My dear husband had to give up a huge garage/shop when we moved to South Florida this past spring. I am such a wonderful wife, that I let him have the largest room in the house as his "man cave."  (Don't worry ladies, it can't be seen from the front door).  He has his home office, cable television, and now thanks to this new gallery wall, all of his treasures around him.  There is also a nice loveseat, a bar with a sink, the coffee maker and a huge sliding glass door going out to our pool.  I honestly have nothing in that room except for a shared wireless printer.....seriously.  I have never let go of that much control of an indoor space before!  He does graciously share the space with our dog Lexi (her kennel and treats are allowed there) and our grandson's toy box and DVD player for when he comes to visit.

We unearthed all of these pictures while on vacation during Christmas.  We both shuttered at the thought of a gazillion holes in the wall, so I looked online for picture ledges.  He wanted them to be eight feet long and we couldn't find any.  After a two minute search on the internet, I found these wonderful plans here.  Alas, the next morning he went to Lowe's, made them, painted them the same wall color and we've been admiring them ever since.

Yes, the hubby drag races (a dragster now, previously a drag bike).  

I love the idea of this wall, and the ability to have an always changing photo gallery if you want to.  This was a very cost effective project.  We already had the paint and nails.  We purchased wood that was already primed so the cost was about $15.00 per shelf.  Hubby said it would have been about 1/3 less if he had purchased wood not primed.  I had NOTHING to do with picture placement, but I am pretty proud of him and his decorating ability.....

Have a wonderful week!

Nancy :)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

An inviting guest room, on a budget.......

I have always dreamed of having a room in my house done in black and white toile, and now that dream has come true.  This is my upstairs guest room in our new home in Fort Lauderdale.  The walls are a pretty french gray, which I love.  

Now, how is this room been done on a budget?  Fairly easy.  The furniture and lamps are from Ikea, the bedding is from and the pictures are from Kirkland's clearance.  I already had the the other accessories and sheets, so my only splurge in this entire room was the luggage rack from Bed, Bath & Beyond.

I love to have company and entertain, and I think this room is very welcoming.  I'm the one in our family and friends that is located closest to the beach and in the warmest year round climate of all, and now that we're pretty much settled in (we just moved here in May), I hope that they all start showing up, especially when they get cold up north.

My next addition will be small baskets with toiletries, etc., I just haven't got around to that yet, but I think it will be a nice touch.

I also have another guest room downstairs that just needs a bit more artwork before I post pictures, and it was truly done on a budget, because the cost of that furniture was free, thanks to my lovely daughter and son-in-law!  Can't wait to show you that one too!

So, you can decorate a guest room on a budget, that feels welcoming.  Good luck on all of your decorating journeys!

Nancy :)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Trying to keep the pantry organized......

is one of the hardest things for me to keep up with, and I don't even know why!  It's probably because I haven't been checking it that great before I head to the store, then I am in a hurry to put things away afterward, and slide it wherever it will fit.  That all ends today!  (hopefully......)

I moved my spices and baking items to the wall cabinet, therefore giving me much more space in the pantry.  I have a somewhat small kitchen to begin with.  My current kitchen is about 1/3 of the size of my previous home (yes, everything is bigger in Texas).  I only have a few drawers, limited counter space, and I miss my island, but I loved the rest of this house so much in Florida, that I am trying all kinds of tricks to love this kitchen.  Fortunately, although not as large as my previous pantry, this one is a good size.

My wonderful hubby said that when we go to paint the inside, he will add another shelf at the top for me, so I can hop up or use a stick to not hurt myself and store paper towels and napkins up there!

Top shelf:  3 lazy susans, one for sauces, condiments, oils & vinegars.

Second shelf:  rice, pasta bread crumbs, chicken stock/broth

Third shelf:  canned goods (mostly beans & tomatoes) I prefer fresh or frozen :)

Fourth shelf:  snacks, especially crackers, peanut butter, etc

Fifth shelf:  dried fruits, convenience packets, breakfast items, cereal.

Floor:  garbage bags: all sizes, saran wrap, baggies, etc., and napkins & paper towels

Not exactly a piece of art, but I think it will work for now.

I love these plastic bins from Target.  I believe they come in 3 different sizes, maybe more.  The labels are from the Better Homes and Garden website.

So until I can find a better system, this will work for now.  Happy organizing everyone!

Nancy :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Home Warranties & Manuals......

I decided I needed to organize my home warranties, user manuals, etc. in an easy to get to format that would not take up even more space in my filing cabinet.  Along with being space fillers, they also come in different sizes and shapes, therefore falling out, getting stuck in the bottom of the file drawer never to be heard from again. Okay, I admit it, they were all in one pile bulging out of a single file folder!  As usual, I searched through all of the great ideas I have seen on Pinterest and my favorite organizing websites and just could not find what I thought was the right fit for me.  Then Alejandra Costello at posted this video of her new system for these items, and I love it!  This is my second project that I feel I have been coached through by a fabulous video by her and it definitely won't be my last. 

These Staples notebooks are fabulous.  I made the binder covers on my computer, and printed the labels with my label maker.  I would have loved to have found clear gussetted binder pockets, but could only find teal, blue, and purple, which I love anyway!  They have a nice velcro closure so you can put multiple books and items in one envelope. The post-it filing tabs can be stuck at the top and you can either use your label maker or write on them.  

I think my favorite part of this system is separating what stays with your home and what goes with you.  If you sell your current home, just leave the home warranty/manual binder for the new owners, they will surely appreciate it.  Keeping those receipts, warranties, especially for your big purchase items is so important.  You want to be able to grab them if you have a problem with your iphone, computer, camera, television, etc.

I hope this inspires you to get your appliances/purchases organized too.  My next project will be cleaning the actual filing cabinet now, and getting into the shred zone......

Have a wonderful week!

Nancy :)