Thursday, January 28, 2016

Trim Healthy Mama Thursday - Hamburger or Hotdog in a Bowl

Here's an easy way to eat hotdogs or hamburgers that would cut out the carbs from the bread.  Just put your hamburger or hotdog in a bowl and add all the fixins that you  love on top.  Then eat it with a fork.

I rarely eat hotdogs, but every once in a while I really crave one.  The one up above has lots of my favorite toppings:  Mayo, mustard, chili, cheese, slaw, and onions.

This also works well for hamburgers and would be better for you.  Especially if the ground beef used is lean.  You could add tomato, lettuce, cheese, or what ever you love on a burger.

If you are interested in the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle,  HERE is a link to the original Trim Healthy Mama book and the two new books are HERE and HERE. 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

My Dream Weekend and a Sewing Machine Story

I hope all of you got through the big blizzard ok!  In my neck of the woods, we live on what is often the snow/ice/rain line. This time around we got ice.  Thankfully we didn't lose power, but, I'm seriously going to get my grandmother's treadle machine in working order in case I need to sew when the power is out!

Last week my sweet hubby loaded up my mother's old Singer and my old Singer machines and took them to the local sew and vac store to have them serviced.  I have had Mama's machine since her death in 2012, but it was not in working condition.

I love this machine!!!!!

You may ask why I titled this post "My Dream Weekend".  Its because I love to be snowed in and one of my happiest times is to be home for three days, doing what ever I want.  This of course includes lots of sewing!

I looked up this machine on line to try to date it and it is either from 1971 or 1973.  This one was originally in a home economics classroom.  I posted a picture of it on a facebook group I'm a member of, and several people said they had the same machine and that it has a classroom history.

It also has the reputation of being a "work horse".  I'm going to try free motion quilting on it.  That is if I an figure out how to drop the feed dogs, if that is even possible!

This is a partial log cabin quilt block I made using the leaders and enders system.  This will be part of a twin size boy's quilt for one of my grandsons.  I went through all my scraps to pull these kinds of fabrics for it.  Red, White and Blue, with a few boy type novelty fabrics mixed in.

I made much progress on the Sun Bonnett Sue quilt.  This picture shows the blocks laid out, before they were stitched together.

I love snow days.  Where I live, I can usually count on having at least one a year!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Crochet hats and flowers

This post is linked to the Yarn Along Linky at Small Things Blog HERE and
to Crazy Mom Quilts HERE.

I'm still working on quilts, but did finish some crocheting this week.

I found a You Tube tutorial for a crochet flower I like and here are the results:

I think the smaller flower is prettier, so I think that will be the size I use from now on.  I'm really enjoying making these little hats!

HERE is the flower tutorial if anyone is interested.  I like the tutorials that this lady makes because she goes slow and explains the steps really well.  And she does it over and over.  She has a basic baby beanie tutorial that would be great for a beginner.  Just grab a skein of yarn, a crochet hook and start crocheting.

Here are a couple of boy's hats with ears and the girl's hat without a flower.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Getting Organized in 2016 - Bedroom Closet

It happens slowly, over time.  Things get busy in my life and things get messy.  Especially on my side of the bedroom closet.  Here are a few pictures of it before I worked on it.

My view for getting dressed in the morning... not very motivating.

These scarves are in a basket, but what a mess!

I've only worn panty hose once this year.  Why are they still here in the way?

I didn't like these cardboard storage boxes.
Here are the "after" pictures!  Looks so much better.

This drawer isn't in the closet, but you can see how I organized it using shoe boxes as dividers.

All the travel bags are inside this one suitcase and all my purses are inside the large one on the right.

I'll be filling that empty spot soon.

These are my jeans and casual pants, folded in a way that is neat and I can see them all at once.

I got all the scarves out of the basket on the floor.

The shoes I wear most often, off the floor and easy to get to.

These little drawers hold my underwear, socks and bras.  Love that little feminine touch of lavender and the rug.
Its hard to get pictures in the closet that really reflect how much better it looks.  Here are some of the things I did:

1. Really got serious about getting rid of things I don't like, or they don't fit, etc.
2.  Tried to get everything off the floor.
3.  I grouped like things together, so they aren't all over the place.
4.  I nested like things inside of each other, such as the suitcases/weekend bags and purses.
5.  I got rid of the cardboard boxes
6.  I threw away some obvious trash, such as plastic store bags, etc.
7.  I moved some things out that don't belong in there, such as a large tote full of office supply type things.
8.  I didn't buy more storage containers.  More storage containers is not the answer to clutter.  The answer is to get rid of it.
9.  I organized the clothes on hangers by color.  I put all the jackets and vests together.  I pulled out any remaining summer items to another closet for storage until the weather warms up.
10.  I folded the jeans and casual pants and put them in the canvas totes.  They are standing up and not just piled on top of each other.
11.  Same thing with the underwear, bras and socks.
12.  I watched You Tube videos for motivation and ideas.

Its much nicer to get ready for work now that I don't face such a mess each time!

Friday, January 15, 2016

This Week's Crafting

In addition to decluttering and organizing, here's what I've been working on this week.  I have been crocheting these baby hats.  The blue ones were a request from my daughter in law for her very pregnant cousin.  Its hard to make these in the right size without a baby head to try them on!  So I made the blue one in a newborn size and a 3 to 6 month size. 

The pink one is for the baby girl expected by my step-daughter.  I am going to crochet a white flower to go on the side of it.  Maybe I can show the final hat next week.

I have struggled so much while teaching myself how to make these hats.  I first started trying to learn about three years ago.  I made some rejects and low quality hats along the way.  Especially the first few!  But, I've finally got a feel for how to make them and I'm ready to branch out with more designs.   The internet is such a help.  Without it, I probably would never have figured it out.

I'm enjoying working on these hats while watching tv with my hubby.  I think one good thing about them is that I get a sense of accomplishment with fast gratification, since I can finish a hat in a couple of days, even though I only have a little bit of time to work on them.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Getting organized 2016 - Organizing papers, office supplies, etc.

I'm still decluttering!   This week I am showing our office supplies and filing system.  We don't really have room for a desk or an office, so these things are tucked into a corner of our bedroom and in a drawer of the china cabinet.

Here are before and after pictures of this little corner of our bedroom where there were the leftovers of a past attempt at getting files and papers organized.  Not sure what happened there, but in the next picture, its much better.

I moved this wooden file cabinet out of my hubby's side of the bedroom closet and started going through several plastic totes and boxes that contain this type of thing.  I still need to work on the inside of that filing cabinet though!  The filing cabinet contains files such as birth certificates, homeowners and car insurance policies, car titles, etc.   The plastic file box on top contains past years' tax return information and more.  In the front is a file for putting the 1099s, W-2s and receipts needed to do our 2015 taxes.  I plan to put these things in that file as they come in the mail.

We had pens, pencils, notepads, paper clips, staples, envelopes and you name it, all over the place.  I gathered them from all the places they had accumulated and put them into this one drawer in the china cabinet.  It will be so nice to know where a pen and pad are the next time I want to make a grocery list.   Believe it or not, even though we have so many, I couldn't find one some times. 

Look how many rolls of tape I found!  I was always afraid I wouldn't have enough, so I would pick up a couple of rolls all along.  I didn't realize I had such a stash.  I can skip buying any tape for quite a while I think!

I took some before pictures of our bedroom closet and am shocked at how bad my side has gotten!  I'll post those along with the after pictures later, maybe next week.   Be prepared - those before pictures are bad!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Polyester Dresses

In my New Years decluttering work, I came across these polyester dresses that my Mama made for me when I was about 12 to 14 years old.  They ended up at my house after I found them in the attic at her house after she died.  I only kept them this long because she made them.  To me, when something is handmade for you, that's special.

 These dresses were really cute at the time, which was the early 1970s! I remember helping her pick out the fabrics at a small fabric shop near where we lived.  Everything in the store was polyester!

But, in the end, I decided to keep only two of the ones I could remember wearing. 

Monday, January 4, 2016

Before and After Christmas Organization

Here are a few "before" and "after" pictures of my 2015 Christmas Organization/Declutter session.  As you can see in these "before" pictures, it was pretty messy.  Lots of cardboard boxes and lots of plastic totes that I wasn't even sure of the contents. 

In the "after" pictures, you will probably think it doesn't look much different!  But, I got rid of the cardboard boxes and lots of junk.  I now know what's in the boxes and only kept the "good" stuff.  I have to admit that after I put the boxes of stuff in the car that I was going to donate, I had second thoughts and went back and retrieved some of it.  Why does "stuff" have such a hold on me?  I don't know.  But I am proud of what I accomplished anyway.

I also organized my wrapping supplies that didn't include Christmas.  Now all the gift bags that I am reusing, ribbons and wrapping paper are all together in an easily accessible place.

Here's a list of some of the things I got rid of:

1.  Ugly, ragged gift bags
2.  Pieces of left over wrapping paper, some was wrinkled.
3.  Left over tissue paper that was VERY wrinkled and messy looking
4.  Mashed bows
5.  Several pairs of new with tags Christmas socks from the Dollar store.  I had planned to make some kind of craft with these, but it never happened.
6.  Broken, ugly ornaments that had no sentimental value
7.  Candles and plug in type fragrance things that I didn't use or like
8.  Boxes.  Had too many of those saved for future use.  I can only use so many!
9.  Christmas lights that don't work any more.
10.  Old, faded Christmas dish towels or some that I don't like. I bought some new ones this year.
11.  Polyester Cloth napkins that I didn't like and never used.

One thing I did that I am so happy to have done:  Instead of all the ornaments being pretty much thrown into one big plastic tote, I organized them into categories.  Each of my children's childhood ornaments are now in a smaller box by themselves.  The ornaments that go on a particular tree are in individual containers or zip lock bags.  Next year it will be so much easier to decorate for Christmas.

Its also nice to have things in smaller plastic containers by themselves.  For instance, if I want to make a Christmas wreath next year, I can just pull out the box with the ribbons, etc in it.  If I want to get out the Christmas dishtowels, pot holders, runners, napkins, mugs and coasters , they are in a plastic container by themselves.

I'm also glad that my wrapping supplies are not so messy!  

This closet is not a big one, but its perfect for storing our Christmas stuff.!

Glimpses of Home - HOOKS!

Now that's an exciting title, isn't it?  HaHa  While working around the house the other day I realized that I have a lot of over t...