Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Decluttering the linen cupboard..........oh boy oh boy!!!!

Yesterday afternoon when the kids got home from school, I did my usual restocking of the lunchboxes for their recess and wrapped their mini lamingtons up for their special treat for their lunchbox.

Then I really felt that I should be tackling my linen cupboard which I have been putting off for the last week. So off I went. I sat on the floor and worked my way up shelf by shelf. I really should have taken a "before" photo but I totally forgot. You would have been horrified I tell you lol. Due to the sheer volume of things in there and with kids and of course Hubby rifling through there looking for towels and sheets etc, it had become a horror cupboard. I basically hadn't gotten rid of anything since my Hubby and I got together over 4 years ago. So it was more or less two houses worth of sheets and towels squeezed into one cupboard. Now due to having 3 bedwetters in the house, I do go through a few more sheets than most, but sheesh, I had enough sheets to just about cater for a whole class at school lol.

Anyway after about an hour, I had gone through the whole cupboard......don't know why I kept putting it off, it really didn't take that long!!!

Here is my cupboard now it is tidy.....yes I know it still has alot of sheets and towels but don't forget we do have 9 people living here, plus the friends that come and sleep over etc.....

This photo is the bottom three shelves......we have beach towels and "grown up towels" (simply because half of them are white and kids and white towels just don't go.......and the answer is no I certainly did not buy those lol, they were a gift from someone that really should have known better but oh well :-) ), then we have Hubby and my sheets and pillowcases and another couple of our towels, then on the top shelf of this picture we have pillow cases and the dog towels for bathing the dogs.

This photo shows the top two shelves with hand towels, face washers, bath mats and the kids towels, and on top shelf is the kids sheets, fitted and flat and a mattress protector. It still looks cluttered but believe me it is a huge improvement to what it was.....now it is just a matter of getting everyone to keep it looking like that lol.

Ok and here is what came out of there and is staying out of there. Unfortunately I didn't have the joy of either sending some of it to an Op Shop or throwing them out. We will be painting the house this year so I kept all the old sheets to use as splatter cloths and all the towels have been ripped up for use as rags/cleaning cloths. Unfortunately I had to find a new home, so they have ended up squeezed in another cupboard for the moment, but it is my rule for these things that they will be recycled after they have been used for painting, they will not be remaining in the house lol!!! Here is a photo of the pile of stuff that came out of that more innocent little cupboard, you can just imagine what it looked like lol!!!

Today I may get around to doing the stuff that is lurking on top of the linen cupboard, there is a huge duffle bag filled with, quilt covers and I think possibly more towels.......I must stay strong and ruthless lol and dispose of the linen....I truly do think it has been breeding!!!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Op Shop and Market Finds of the weekend

This weekend we finally got around to taking the large bag of stuff that I have had sitting in the alcove for a couple of months, to the op shop. It felt good to get rid of such a huge bag of our unwanted gear.

Sadly lol, we made the mistake of actually having a look around the shop while there.....big mistake!!! I think over the course of the weekend we may have actually bought home just about as much as we just got rid of. But of course there is an upside.....isn't there always??? lol,,,,,it was stuff that we wanted to make our house into a home. Everything, well just about everything, was stuff that is to be used to decorate our home.

These ones were found at our first op shop, the one where we donated our bag of stuff. Here I must admit we also got a stack of soft toys which are for Mr9 with autism. He destroys things at a great rate of knots so op shop toys are great as they are cheap and you don't feel the strain on your pocket. We keep some op shop finds in the cupboard for those inevitable times when he has destroyed just about everything else. I usually buy the ones that are in really great condition, normally ranging in price between 50 cents and about $3.00. I bring them home and wash them and then if he chews it to death, I don't see the dollar signs flashing before my eyes and feel the devastation of a toy lasting just an hour or so in his grasp. Don't get me wrong lol, he does get the good toys for his birthday and Christmas and normally they are pretty short lived, but what can you do????? Anyway, I got a little off track there didn't I. As you can see I found a pair of brand new Nikes, a little wooden kitchen ornament which will look great in our country style kitchen and two little copper items which hubby has decided he would love to collect more of to also decorate the kitchen.

The cost of this loot:
Brand New Nike Shoes for my son: $3.50
Wooden Kitchen ornament: $2.25
Copper items: $4.50

Grand total: $10.25

I was impressed with that!

Next while we were out we decided to just check out one more op shop lol.....(I think my hubby became a little hooked,,,,,he would have spent a lot more if I hadn't have reigned him in!!)

The above finds were a toilet roll holder,,a nice sturdy one which has little shells painted on it and a litte piggy (Hubby insisted as I love pigs)

Grand total of this haul:

Toilet roll holder $4.00
Pig $2.00
Grand Total - $6.00

Then to top the weekend off, yesterday we went to the markets. I came across this stall right at the end of the day which had a gravy boat. I have been using my old plastic jug for gravy and I have always wanted a little gravy boat. Well I spotted one, but naturally the man selling it refused to separate his "lot" and was asking $15 for all 12 items. I hummed and hahhed for a while but then decided I did like the pattern and it would fit in with my country kitchen theme, and the colour actually matches my cupboards anyway, so we bought it. I got it home and washed it up and have now found uses for everything.......

For the $15 I got:
2 x italian glass bottles which I will be filling up with chillies and oil and making little decorations for the window ledge;
Huge salt and pepper shakers which will be used for adding salt and pepper when cooking;
A butter dish which I have upturned and it sits on my window ledge holding my hand cream and aloe vera gel and hand sanitiser;
My gravy boat!!!
A letter rack;
A serviette holder for the table
A utensil holder
A lolly jar
A compost pot (this replaces a very revolting looking bucket we currently use!!)
and finally a teapot which after much consideration, I will be using as a planter which will hold a nice fern or something to sit on my kitchen bench.

As you can see in the photos we have had our kitchen remodelled and all that is left to do is the tiling. We have been trying to decide on what tiles we want and I think we have finally made up our mind,,,,,now we just have to jump in and do it lol.

So all our finds on the weekend have been justified as legitamate purchases made to better our home. I can't wait to continue my decluttering now so that it can all come together!!!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Laundry half done.....decluttering is cleansing to the mind!!

I kept standing at the laundry door just gazing at it. I couldn't bring myself to start. The linen cupboard was just too much to deal with, so what does any girl do when faced with a linen cupboard that may well erupt at any moment????...........she starts at the other end of the laundry lol, thats what!!!! Here are my before and after....I couldn't believe how much stuff I got rid of, not that the photos make it look that much but the garbage bag and the amount that was in there that actually needed to be somewhere else was amazing!

This is my storage cupboard for lack of a better word,,,,it has only recently moved into the laundry as although I didn't really need the cupboard as such, it does make a great spot for the dog and cat food supplies and just general stockpiling. So for the moment until I get the rest of the house decluttered, it will stay. My long term goal is for it to live in the shed though, so we shall see how we go with that!

Before decluttering:

After decluttering: - yes that washing you see is clean and just about to be put away and the sheet that is sitting on the cupboard is used as a birdcage cover at night for my son's little cockatiel

Inside the storage cupboard - BEFORE : I had forgotten I even had biscuits sitting in there lol, the kids feed the animals, so I just give the animal food straight to the kids to put in the cupboard after I buy it so I hadn't even looked in here for about 2 months!

Inside the storage cupboard AFTER:
(looks like I can go shopping again lol....just kidding!) The bottom shelf still looks a little messy because of that extra long roll of alfoil. At least I will use it up now because it just looks messy and is ruining my work!!!

Inside my cupboard which hangs on my laundry wall....aka the cleaning cupboard, this one wasn't pleasant! BEFORE:
I am getting rid of all my chemical cleaners, so I now have them sitting in the container to use up what is left of them, so this container will slowly empty out. I am using more of the TriNature stuff (top left) and also just good old bicarb and vinegar. It still looks a little chaotic but at least now I can actually see what is in there.

My challenge for next week is the darn linen cupboard. I just have to do it. I know we have lots of beds in this house but I swear some of the single bed sheets in there haven't seen the light of day in the last 4 years lol. I don't really think I need that many. It is just part of the joy of having a second marriage I guess, you accumulate doubles of everything!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

The end of yet another weekend......

I can't believe how fast the weeks are flying by. The kids are in their 4th week of school already!!!

This weekend went so fast it was unbelievable. It was our weekend with all the kids that went slightly off kilter as my stepson Mr9 with autism didn't come, only his sister. Mr9 had been hit in the mouth by a flying remote control, thrown by his almost 4 year old step brother apparently and ended up with stitches in his lip and was put on a course of antibiotics. His mother decided that she should keep him there to keep an eye on him (she thinks we are just hopeless obviously even though my Hubby was basically sole carer of the child since birth up until his mother worked out that she could screw us for more money if she actually had him with her!!!!....I won't even start on that story grrrrrr). We have no idea how he is going as she doesn't bother to let us know anything unless its an emergency. We can only imagine what he would be like though as he is constantly picking at his lips at the best of times and will often pick at them until they bleed so I wish her all the luck in the world at keeping his fingers away from those stitches lol. I know that sounds awful but those of you with step children will know what I mean about some exes lol.

Saturday was spent in the kitchen. It was an early start as my eldest had to go and work at his part time job at KFC starting at 7.30......crappy time on a weekend lol. So I got up and put on a batch of cheese and bacon scrolls and a batch of jam scrolls. These I make and freeze for the kids lunch boxes. Once I had done the usual load of washing I began on organising dinner for that night. We wanted an early dinner as we were taking the kids down the beach, so I decided that I should just do the lasagna and get the salads done and out of the way while I was already in the kitchen. So I made the lasagne, potato salad, coleslaw and tossed salad. It sure was nice!!!!

We went down the beach Saturday night, Hubby and I didn't feel like going in so we just watched the kids enjoying themselves. It was a nice night.

Yesterday we decided to go the the markets in the morning and of course, the day that we have the kids with us we saw heaps of stuff that we could have bought but we restrained ourselves as we knew that if we got stuff we would have 5 voices saying "can we have...." and of course if one finds something that they would like to buy then the others whine because they couldn't find anything to buy. Lol I have been trying to teach them that you just don't buy for the sake of buying but the younger three just don't get it. They think just because one of them finds something that they would like to spend their pocket money on, they have to have something too. Mr7 found a pirate ship complete with two pirates for 7 dollars and loves it to bits. To our amazement it even makes noises, so that wasn't a bad buy by him I don't think.

After leaving there, we made our way into the city to visit the Museum. Miss11 has been learning about Egypt at school and has been fascinated by mummies etc. So I thought it would be a nice opportunity to take her to see a real one. Her mum would never do anything like that so I thought she might like that. It was pretty cool as they had a kids trail on so they each got a reusable bag and they had to get 4 different stations ticked off to get a prize from the museum shop. They had to draw a skeleton in the Bones section, they went beach combing and came out with a little bag filled with about 8 different shells, they had the opportunity to dress up as a sea creature (which none of them would do lol but they still got their page stamped) and then they got to make their own butterfly. It was good and added to the museum for them. Their prize was a little stretchy dinosaur and a chocolate frog......It sure is nice to get something for free for a change!!!

Today it is back to school and back to housework. I'm off to empty the cat litter (I hate that job sooooo much!!!!) and mop the floors and clean bathrooms. Joy oh joy but I need to get a stack done today as tomorrow I am helping out at the school for the whole day,,,,,how did I get sucked into that one lol?????

Friday, February 12, 2010

Clutter is a burden....

I found this wonderful page online and thought I would share it with you.


I am a self confessed hoarder. I hoard sentimental type stuff and my other half hoards anything that "might come in handy" lol so together that covers a huge amount of STUFF!!!!

This page had me going "yeah, oh yeah, I get that".......ok off to continue my decluttering.......I'm up to the laundry, which houses the linen cupboard,,,,,,think I should start praying for a miracle in this one lol...wish me luck...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The heat is on.......

It is so darn hot here in Adelaide. I don't know what it is, but this year I am really feeling it. I must be getting old lol.

Dropped off the kids to school on Monday morning and the radio said it was 31,,,,it felt hotter. This morning the radio said 27 and I was seeking out the shade and wiping sweat off my brow like they had said it was 40!!! I just can't seem to get cool. I went to the shops before and it felt so darn hot in there too. I said to the woman on the checkout about how warm it was in there and she said "good I thought it was just me having hot flushes" lol, it sure wasn't just her, it was HOT!!!!

I'm over summer and just want it to end. I want to feel like doing stuff again. I started my decluttering and was all eager but even that just feels too hard right now. Yesterday I finally got to do the inside of my bathroom cabinet and got rid of 7 packets of bath crystals/salts/fizzing bombs etc. They had been in there so long that none of them really had any smell left in them. I just don't have baths,,,,,,although in this weather it does sound quite nice!

How is everyone else coping with the weather in their areas????

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

One shelf a day keeps the clutter away.....

Well today I decided that I really must start my decluttering. I have spent the first 4 days of my kids being back at school to restock the pantry and getting floors cleaned, dust bunnies evicted etc etc.

Today my mission was to attack the top of the bathroom vanity cabinet and the window ledge in there. I couldn't believe it when I came out of there with arms overflowing of rubbish lol. It only took me about 5 minutes but just from those two tiny surfaces I evicted from my home:

- 2 cans of hairspray (these haven't been touched since we got married over 2 years ago!!)
- a container of bubblebath with a miniscule amount in the bottom (my kids have all been shower converts for about a year now)
- a half full bottle of headlice solution which had solidified in the bottle lol
- 4 tubs of kids drawing soap stuff that has been in the house for about 4 years and the kids didn't like the smell
- an Avon eyeliner/shadow duo thing that I bought and never used as I didn't like the colour.

Can you believe that I had that amount of crap just sitting there taking up space when we didn't even use the stuff??????? I'm embarrassed to even admit to it but this blog in the end will be my sense of achievement. Being able to see all the clutter that leaves my house written down in black and white will be cleansing I think.

The worst part is that I have moved these items time and time again to clean the ledge/shelf for the last couple of years lol. I must be mad!!!!!!

I should actually take photos of before and after, that would probably be easier than writing it all down,,,hmmm may do that on tomorrow's task......the bathroom vanity inside......oh geez I hate to think!!!!