Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Get Inspired


Is it ever nice coming home after a week of low-key relaxation with a splash of ENGAGEMENT

I'll fill you in on all the details soon I assure you! But I will say this: I'm as tickled as a schoolgirl! Which is so unlike me. Apparently the giddy excitement of a gorgeous diamond ring donning my finger and the endless planning possibilities ahead has the same inevitable hold on even one such as I. *Giggle*

Now that is enough about me for now. It is Wednesday. Which means we get to reach out for a little inspiration and see what others have gotten up to as of late. A bit of neat and pretty to help us get over hump day into August!

Compact Laundry Room at its BEST!

Outdoor Entertaining Cart

A Young Ladies Dream Room Tour

Welcome Home

Travel Crayon Wallet - Neato!

Painted Curtain Rods

Delicious Danger

Repurposed End Table Turned Lego Central! 

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Carrot Soup

Summer time here is lovely with the bon fires, the birthday parties, the get togethers, the beach… on and on goes the list. So, when the sun is out and friends are calling, my desire to spend four hours in the kitchen whipping up a gourmet meal is just non-existent. This leads us to the problem “What is gluten-free, vegan, quick AND delicious?”.

Well, my friends, if you want an answer to that, check out my fellow Frederictonian’s blog, Georgia Trying Something New. I stumbled upon this blog via facebook not long ago and I was incredibly impressed with the recipes that were not only easy, but very satisfying to the taste buds. So, I set out to try Georgia’s Carrot Soup recipe in order to have something quick and easy available before rushing off to the beach with Allison, Finley & Moe.

This is what you will need:

  • 2 pound bag of carrots, peeled & chopped  
  • Half of a large yellow onion, chopped (Al & I both love onions so I used a bit more) 
  • 1 1/2 cups of vegetable broth 
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil 
  • 1/2 tablespoon of salt 
  • 1/2 tablespoon of pepper 
  • 1 teaspoon of basil  
Follow these easy steps for some delicious and satisfying soup:

  1. Cook carrots until soft. 
  2. Meanwhile, sauté your onions in your oil in a frying pan until they are translucent.
  3. Once both the carrots and onions are done, pulse in the food processor (or in our case, as always, the VitaMix)  
  4. Add your vegetable broth (I like PC Organics), salt, pepper & basil. 
  5. Pulse until the soup is at your desired consistency.
 A few notes:
*Actually measure your salt. I did not. This was not a good decision. There is such a thing as too salty.

Despite the fact I may have made it a tad too salty, this soup was amazing and so simple to make. Allison and I enjoyed this with avocado and hummus sandwiches and loved it. It made enough for three meal times for the two of us and made life easy after a long afternoon in the sun when we were much too tired to cook. Highly recommended and thanks to Georgia for sharing this lovely recipe on her blog!

 We hope you enjoy

Friday, 26 July 2013

Organized Palooza


You have reached the Gaudett/MacDonalds residence. We are currently away from our extra organized home enjoying a few days of family time at the cottage.

But have no fear, there is material to be read and ideas to be found after the past 10 Days of Organization Palooza! 

So come on in. Kick off your shoes. And take a tour of our revamped and totally functional home.
And when you are done, make sure you leave a message after the beep!

Day 1: Refrigerator 
Day 2: Main Living Area
Day 3: Laundry Room
Day 4: Spice Cabinet
Day 5: Garage {Part 1}
Day 6: Garage {Part 2}
Day 7: Recipe Box
Day 8: Spare Room Closet
Day 9: Supplies Closet
Day 10: Master Closet

I linked up at A Bowl Full of Lemons Organize it! Party

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Organization Palooza Day 10: Master Closet

Finally! We have arrived! Day 10 of Organization Palooza chez moi! 

Did you ever think we would make it to end? I had my doubts along the way but thanks to you holding me accountable I can say with great excitement that our home is officially ORGANIZED! Top to bottom. Inside out. *It would however be incorrect to assume it is perfectly clean. I attribute that hiccup to a dog, baby, and the limited amount of time in a day.

The last stop on the organization train brings us to Common-Law and I's shared master closet. I have been avoiding it for some time now. The bones of the closet {shelving and such} are not overly functional for our needs so addressing all the issues will be a process. But just tackling the build up of mess and reevaluating my approach has made a significant difference. *As well as getting the scheming under way for ideas on how to go about tackling the bigger issues. Robert will be D to the lighted.

Take a look at what I started out with:

The shelf that runs along the top of the hang-bar is way too high for this gal. It is the major issue I have with the closet. And it being the only shelf space, this means everything that I want to stay tidy needs to be hung.

I 'think' eventually a shelving section will be implemented for folded items which would then turn the higher shelf into seasonal storage. But until then a cheap second hand Ikea dresser will have to do the trick in the bedroom area.

In spite of all the structural set backs, I was still able to rearrange the space and make it more functional without spending a dime. Take a looksey:

Few! I know it is not a dramatic full-on transformation but it certainly is a big change from what I started out with. It just feels better walking in there now.

First I rearranged the hanging clothes. Roberts overwhelming number of collard shirts came out from the corner and the seasonal coats and his heavy sweaters replaced them. On the lower hanging bar are both Robert and I's dressier bottom items: pants, shorts, and skirts.

Roberts shirts moved to the longer hang-bar section. *Do note that he has WAY more clothes than me. I mean seriously. Like triple! My tops and dresses follow suit. All are coloured coordinated for easy wardrobe selection. *And because it just looks better in my opinion.

The folded items were cut down in here significantly. Hopefully it will help with the inevitable mess. His and hers sections of both sweaters and jeans are each to their own side of the closet.

Most of the folded items were redirected to that Ikea dresser I mentioned.

The top two drawers hold his and hers tops. *Again note Common-laws huge drawer full and my tiny one.

The two lower drawers hold his and hers casual bottoms. 

Roberts has night pants, swim shorts, casual shorts, and cozy pants. Mine holds shorts and workout/cozy pants. This drawer will switch with the jeans come fall.

*In case you are wondering, my night pants are in our bathroom closet. We have three bins each of intimates and such. So I store mine there. It is such a handy idea having them right in the bathroom area. And now that I think of it I actually showed a picture of it a while back {here}.

Last, but certainly not least, is our collection of bags and my tank-tops. Both items needed better storage solutions - and could still use an improvement.

The bags were originally stuffed in a tote. They have now been upgraded to the two large baskets on the centre shelf {notice the baskets are a leftover after the Spare Closet makeover}. One full of purses and the odd clutch. The other with tote and gym bags.

The tank tops went from the overflowing whit bin pictured in the Before photo to a bigger, but still slightly too small, basket. It is a temporary fix that I hope will do the trick.

While I sorted and refolded each pile a few items got the ol' boot. My general rule when doing this is purge anything that hasn't been worn in a year, torn or stained items, and anything I just don't love anymore. *An exception is made to the stained rule if it is paint gear.

It feels good to purge. Means more room for a new haul.

Except Sarah beat me to the punch on that one. She claimed most of the items to add to her own wardrobe. It is nice to see items that I once loved have a fresh start in someone else's closet though. Even if that closet has currently set up shop in my basement. 

Actually, one outfit in particular really caught our attention. It called for a mini fashion show...

There are no words.

These are the kind of shenanigans that evolve from an organization rampage. It is all in a days work around here!

Now it is your turn. How did the organization go at your house? Do you feel like things have or are coming together? Did you get up to any silly business along the way? Dish!

Chat soon.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Get Inspired

Inspirations have been organization heavy as of late. What can you do? Organization Palooza has that influence.

But - and there is a but for those of you so.over the tidy and ready for the pretties - we are nearing the end of this organization challenge {for now}. Which means we will need to head in a different direction.

Enter this weeks Inspirations.

Instead of sticking with a theme or trend I am opting to share all things lovely. Anything that has caught my eye as of late. We will go from there. Who knows what direction this could lead! The world is our oyster...

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Organization Palooza Day 9: Supplies Closet

I can see the finish line! Just a couple spaces in need of organizing left to go.

{Enter Happy Dance Here}

Today's project was on the basic side of the spectrum. Though not terribly disastrous, the small built-in supplies closet in the main floor bath needed some direction. 

This is what I started with:

The contents of this closet are not overly exciting. There are no darling towels or sweet smelling soaps in sight. But alas, every home needs a less than glamorous place to stash the run of the mill household items: cleaning supplies, medications, spare toilet paper, paper towels, and the like. Mine just happens to be in the main floor bathroom.

We learned a trillion plus one lessons when building our house. There are decisions you are bound to question and reevaluate with your first home after living in it a little while. A supplies closet was one of ours. With all the closet space, we never dreamed that there would not be a practical spot to stash the broom and vacuum. But with a little creative thinking we were able to convert a small linen closet into a  multifaceted supplies closet.

It just needed to be taken from creative to easily functional.

Here are the few simple changes that I made to help do just that.

With a few shelf alterations, some bin reconfiguring, and a bit of label making this closet is ready for anything!

The top shelf remained stocked with spare paper products. Just tidied. 

The sole overflowing medication bin was sorted and divided into four separate, more serviceable, clear and labeled bins. 

Based on our medication needs we went with the following groupings:
  1. Pain
  2. Eyes, Ears, Nose & Throat
  3. First Aid
  4. Kids

Speaking of labelling - my most favouritest organization solution. Each shelf now has a very basic label  as well, identifying its contents. That way Common-Law has no excuse for replacing things in the wrong spot. *I point the finger at Robert, but really it is helpful for everyone.

I went with the following just as a reference:
  1. Paper
  2. Medications
  3. Cleaning Supplies

The cleaning supplies are just below eye level on this shelf. Which makes it easier, I have found anyway, to quickly find what you are looking for. Yet, they are high enough to be out of reach of small children. *Another great feature of this cabinet is that the knob is mid way up the door and, like the cabinets throughout the remainder of the house, the doors are flush with the trim. So little fingers cant even get the doors open.

To help speed the cleaning process along, the white bin holds all of the products I use to do the bathrooms. That way there is no fussing when I have a few spare minutes. I just have to grab and go.

The bottom shelf holds the body of the vacuum. With the shelf readjustment it now lays flat with the hose in the bottom drawer with the other attachments.  

This may seem strange to you, it was for me at first as well, but we just have no other place that makes sense to store it that it isn't in the way. And if I am being completely honest, as I tend to be to a fault these days, I quite like it. The breaking down and building back up only takes a second and it ensures that I check the hose and nozzle for hair and build up. Two birds, one stone.

And that is that. A few simple changes go a long long way. 

Elementary yet Essential. 

Happy Organizing!

Chat soon.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Organization Palooza Day 8: Spare Room Closet

Happy Monday!

Can you believe that we are midway through July already? My goodness time flies when you are having fun! No literally. Time is getting away from me. Up, up, and away.

But about that fun. Is everyone enjoying the results of their organization efforts around the house? I know I certainly am. Best of all, by the end of this week I should honestly be able to say that every single item in my entire home is stored in logical place. In a relatively tidy manner to boot! It is a b.e.a.utiful feeling.

Before I get ahead of myself however, let's focus back to the task at hand. There is a process to success after all.

My next stop on the organization train was the craft/miscellaneous item closet in the spare room. It needed some serious as a heart attack attention and that is no joke. Who jokes about heart attacks? A dumping ground for all things 'extra', this place needed some reason. And fast!

Take a look at it now.

First things first: I often feel the need to justify the disaster areas in my home. This being one of them. It is one of those spaces that anything and everything winds up in. When in doubt, throw {blank} in the spare closet. And because of the nature of the space it requires a system to manage the traffic flow to avoid build up. Clearly it was greatly lacking. 

With a few simple changes however, that should all be in the past.

First up to bat - Newly available dresser.

After revamping Finley's bedroom closet this dresser got the boot. And naturally it made its way to the spare room for safe keeping. But turns out it is a perfect solution for my craft supplies organizational needs. The small basket that was filled to overflowing with paper, ribbon, stickers, tools, and close to weighing as much as a small elephant was not up to par. *I think Im confusing my sports.

A filing system holds sticker and letter decals for scrapbooking and label making. While two extra-large jars {scored my Meema} hold loose ribbon and scrap pieces of paper.

The top drawer holds scrapbooking and art supplies: paints, slicer, tape, stamps, ect.

Second: stencils and punch outs.

Third: cork, small papers, and stationary.

Fourth: medium and large paper

Fifth: event supplies {Easter eggs, Finley's birthday celebration decor} 

Second up to bat - totes.

Since we already had a plethora purchased these needed to be put to work. Originally they were being used to store baby clothes but since reorganizing Finley's closet they have sat empty. Until now. *Four were relocated to the basement - two full of baby girl clothes {sigh} and two of outgrown items.

I have the tendency to organize by looks. If it's pretty and somewhat functional I'm all over it like white on rice. But this closet is my exception. It needed to be highly functional because it can get out of control in a real kind of hurry. So I skipped over 'pretty' completely. Enter grey totes.

Instead of cramming like-items in medium sized baskets to the point of over flowing {see Before photo}, totes are a great solution. Allocating each to a specific craft keeps everything together in one place as well as making it easy to transport when it comes time to use it. *I have a one year old so as much as  the idea of a 'Project Room' appeals to me it is not functional. He is happy where the toys are. Which is where the bin will have to go.

I used my five available totes for:
  1. Project Supplies
  2. Gift Bags, Boxes & Ribbons
  3. Sewing Materials
  4. Frames
  5. Paints & Canvas 

And that is a home run for the win. Short ball game eh?

Sometimes simple really is better.

Have you been organizing away in any closets? What is your approach to a successful space?

Chat soon.
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