Wednesday, July 27, 2011


I found this "poem" over At the Picket Fence. Vanessa and Heather are sisters who blog together and do a regular Simply Sunday post that I enjoy!  This one was so great I just had to share it.


I will never have it all together.

“Serve the Lord with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.”
Psalm 100:2-3

I will never have the most perfectly clean home without toys strewn about and cracker crumbs ground into the carpet.

“A woman who fears the Lord, shall be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands,
And let her own works praise her in the gates.”
Proverbs 31:31

I will never have all the answers.

“Oh the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!”
Romans 11:33

I will never know just the right thing to
 wear for every occasion,
have the cutest haircut or be a trendsetter.

I will regularly leave the house in yoga pants, even though I don’t do yoga,
and my hair will be in a pony-tail.

Hopefully I will have showered.

Do not let your adornment be merely
 outward-arranging the hair,
wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel-rather
let it be the hidden person of the heart,
with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit,
which is very precious in the sight of God.

1 Peter 3:3

I will never enjoy doing laundry and cleaning toilets, especially ones that are used by little boys.

“In all the work you are doing, work the best you can.
Work as if you were doing it for the Lord, not for people.”

Colossians 3:23
I will never have a body that does not have dimples in all of the wrong places.
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made,
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.”

Psalm 139:14-15

I will never be a perfect mother. And I will never be a perfect wife.
I will make mistakes.

“A soft answer turns away wrath
But a harsh word stirs up anger.
The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly,
But the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness.”

Proverbs 15:1-2

I will probably never be viewed by the world as a success in my chosen role of Homemaker.
“She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:
Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”

Proverbs 31:27-29

I’ve never been someone who looks at the world through “rose-colored” glasses. But I’m pretty sure that I look at myself through “world-colored” glasses. I put them on and walk around looking through lenses that reflect all of my faults and flaws. It’s a miracle I don’t bump into things more often with such distorted vision! But, what if I took them off? What if I saw myself as He sees me instead of how the world sees me? Perhaps my vision would be restored and I would see that I am…

Always beautiful to Him

Always loved by Him

Always the daughter of the King!
-Vanessa, At the Picket Fence - Simply Sunday

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Bring on the Summer Projects!

There's something about blue sky and a warm breeze that makes me wanna get stuff done. It also makes me want to get dirty. Seriously. I've been wandering around the place with dirt on my feet and grass on my knees for weeks! (I do shower....sometimes) My legs are also covered in white spray paint because I have caught the reno bug once more!

I say "once more" because when you buy a fixer-upper like we did.....somedays you feel like fixing things....but most days you really don't.

It has been fabulous.  WE FINALLY PAINTED OUR HOUSE!  Let me remind you of what it used to be.

Garden hose turquoise. That's what color that is.

And's "Cracked Pepper".   LOVE. LOVE. LOVE Behr Paint and Primer in one. The pigment is so thick and rich we could've gotten away with only one coat. For serious!

Look how the purple irises POP against the grey! So beautiful.

I also bought a can of Rustoleum Flat white and went to town on our old screen door, mailbox , and our house number too!

The only thing left...which I'm sure you can see in the the trim under the gutters. Oh how I am NOT looking forward to that.  The reno train just rolled in to Procrastination station.

I'm linkin my sweet before'n'after to:

- Dittle Dattle's Amaze Me Monday
- Thrify Decor Chick's Before and After Party
Anything Related Tuesday's

Friday, June 3, 2011

Monogrammed Mailbox

I found this CUTE cheap mailbox fix-up over at Full of Great Ideas.

Since I've been on a huge fix-up-the-outside-of-our-house rampage, I knew my old mailbox was in for a treat.  It's funny how when you do one fix-up it sorta snowballs into hundreds. Kinda scary actually.

On my hunt for the perfect monogram font, I came across this really cute monogram stamp set at More Than Paper

It was the middle one that jumped out at me...the other two are too fancy-dancy for us.


Unfortunately, I am not blessed with a Cricut or Silhouette machine so I printed off an enlarged version and painstakingly drew it, free-hand, on to my newly spraypainted mailbox. 

Needless to say, it's not perfect.  My hand on the paintbrush was less than steady.  BUT, from a distance you can't even tell!  Don'tcha just love it! I do!

I'm linkin this bad boy up to: 


OH and also:
Stuff and Nonsense

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Morning Reflections - dealing with some bad news

Outside my Window - the sun is shining and it's already 20 degrees at 8:30am. Looks like she's gonna be a warm one today!

I am Thinking - about my best childhood friend and maid of honor AC that just informed me that she has breast cancer at the age of 26. My heart is breaking for her. She is so vibrant and strong. On the upside....she often shaves her head for the fun of it so losing her hair won't be a problem! There is always an upside - we just sometimes have a hard time seeing it.

I am Thankful for - a faithful God who gently guides His children through the good times and the bad times. He is my Rock.  I am nothing without Him.

From the Kitchen - NOTHING! I have the house to myself for the first time in 3 weeks so I think I will grab a book and enjoy the sun in my backyard.

I am Creating - a few projects all at once. Lamps, a wreath and a cute little side table that I picked up for $8. It's been hard to get things done with another woman in the house to talk to all day!

I am Reading - The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent....but I've only read the first few pages so I don't have much to say on it.  I am also reading a commentary on 1 Peter....still.  It's slow going but I enjoy having something that makes my brain work a little.

I am Hoping - that all the times I was able to share with AC about Jesus in our younger years would have planted the seeds of hope and strength that she needs to draw on now. I am sad that I've been bad at keeping in touch the last few years.

I am Hearing - precious silence of an empty house.

Plans for the Week - it's gonna get crazy around here. We're helping our friends move and I have to create some order in the house before my parents and grandparents arrive on Thursday. I also have a never ending list of baking to do.  It's unreal how much food two men can consume when it's there for the taking!

A Picture or Two:  ... or three....of my friend AC and I. 

AC is on the left, I'm on the right. Vising our friend LB at UVIC.

Always quirky. We love going spelunking in our home town Grand Forks, BC
My bridesmaids - we've been friends since the age of 8. AC is on the left and my maid of honour.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Organizing the Linen Closet

Oi Vay, things have been pretty crazy around here lately. As I mentioned a while ago, we have another couple living with us this month. It is really nice to have another wife around to share the cooking and cleaning duties. I might actually miss them when they're gone!

To make them feel more at home (instead of nomads?...gypsies?) I thought I would organize some of our spaces to make things easier to find.  There's nothing like having to ransack someone elses closets/cupboards when they're not home and you need something. Yikes.

The biggest problem was my linen closet. Sheets and towels and tools and electronics...oh my.  How are they supposed to find a towel when they want to shower?!

I love the idea of beautiful baskets to hold my sheet sets and towels but lets be honest - I am FAR too cheap for that.


Instead I used things that almost every woman has a stash of:


Yep, gift bags.  I grabbed some bigger ugly ones I would never give to anyone (that I know ..tee hee) and added some fun little labels tied on with twine!  They're the perfect fit for a sheet set and pillow cases.

Now I don't have to worry about our master sheet sets winding up on our guests bed .....eek! Call me strange but that wierds me out a bit.

The towels got rolled up neatly and fit perfectly on the shelf below the sheets. The face clothes live in the basket in the middle along with a yummy smelling vanilla sachet to keep things fresh!

I couldn't manage to get a full length picture of the whole closet but the bottom shelves contain our electronics.  I labeled a ziploc bag each for camera accessories, cell phone accessories and various chargers and batteries.  I also have two other labelled gift bags for tableclothes and napkin storage!  Works like a charm!

How do you keep your linen closet organized?

I'm partying at A Bowl Full of Lemons and 
At the Picket Fence

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Gentle and quiet? Who me?

In my daily devotions, I've been studying the book of 1 Peter - which lately has included slogging through Tyndale New Testament Commentary by Wayne Grudem.  While some of it is just a load of "Greek"...haaaa pun intended....there are some really great insights as well.

This morning I got to study 1 Peter 3  - aptly titled Wives and Husbands.  How fitting that I am a wife! With a husband! I tell ya, this passage has ruffled more than a few feathers in its day but it's one that I cherish and I was so excited to see what Mr. Grudem had uncovered.

Let's revisit the first few verses of 1Peter 3:

Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior or their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight. 1 Peter 3: 1-4

I don't want to hit on the submissive bomb too much.....maybe that's for another post.  Mr. Grudem had some great things to say about that too.   But anyway.....

What I want to touch on is the last two verses regarding the beauty of a woman.  It's often hard to just be a woman in today's society.  Media and Hollywood constantly impress on us the "ideal" image. As wives we feel "judged" by our ability to keep house, raise children (for those who are blessed in that way) or be that perfect loving wife. Perfect. Ick.

Unfortunately when we internalize these ideals, we often project them on to the people we love the most - our spouse, our children, our family. It's really hard to be perfect when the rest of the crew isn't keeping up, eh?

Some people say that the Bible doesn't translate into today's age....but I disagree! I think these verses hit the nail on the head. 

"Your beauty should not come from outward adornment" - I don't believe that Peter is suggesting that we dress like slobs, wear our hair in a way OTHER than braids or go without jewelry. He is saying that our value and worth are not from outward adornment.  We've all met a woman that is beautiful to look at but has an ugly character, right?

"Instead it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit..."(vs 4)

According to the Tyndale New Testament Commentary, the adjective "gentle" (praus in Greek) is defined as:

- not insistant on one's own rights
- not pushy
-not selfishly assertive
-not demanding one's own way

(I don't actually need to say anything about that list, do I?.....Didn't think so )

Mr. Grudem goes on to say, " Such a spirit is the result of a quiet and continual trust in God to supply one's needs."

That's all it is ladies.  When we are looking to someone (or something) other than God to meet our needs.....they won't! They can't!  Our poor husbands are not able to meet our EVERY NEED ladies. They're human and sinners saved by grace.  But if we choose, every day, to cast our cares on our Creator and let Him fill us up (like only He can) then our hubbies are free to be who God made them to be.

I betcha if we stop putting so much pressure on our husbands to be who "we" want them to be, they'd be more inclined to try.   Get it?

And I betcha when God fills in all the gaps, you'll find your husband meets more of your needs than you realized :)

I'm pretty bad at this....for the record. "Quite" and "gentle" are hardly in my vocabulary. But I've seen the changes in MY life, when I stopped looking to my husband and I started looking to God. And it's funny, I'm starting to see the changes in my hubby too. God works in wonderful, sneaky ways. Who knew?!

Courtney over at Women Living Well wrote two great posts about dealing with p*rnography in marriage and cited a number of really great resources. Maybe one day soon I'll share our story about how God is making a dirty, jaded mess into something beautiful ....I know He is....I can feel it.

Beautiful on the inside :)

Edit: I'm linkin this post up to Courtney's Women Living Well Wednesday

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Better For Ya Fried Chicken

Just a quick tip for all the fried chicken lovin' American mama's out there ('cause I heard it was more popular down there than up here in that true?)

Nate Berkus featured chef Rocco DiSpirito this morning who shared this wonderful "healthy" fried chicken tip:

The amount of fat absorbed by deep-frying is a function of time (...and also temperature of the oil....but we'll focus on time)


In a deep frying pan or dutch oven, POACH your chicken first.  Put an inch or so of water, chicken broth (I usually add some white wine) to the bottom of your pan and bring the liquid up to a simmer.  Add your chicken and cover.  Let cook for 10-15 minutes. Always use a meat thermometer to make sure your chicken reaches 180F. That way you know it's cooked through.

Now that your chicken is cooked, you can use your favorite ingredients for breading and then pop into the deep fryer for 10-15 seconds. Just enough time to crisp up the outside!

Check out Rocco's Flash Fried Chicken Carnitas using this method.

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Via Dolorosa

Down the Via Dolorosa
In Jerusalem that day
The soldiers tried to clear the narrow street.
But the crowds pressed in to see
The man condemned to die
On Calvary

He was bleeding from a beating
There were stripes upon his back
And he wore a crown of thorns
Upon his head
But he bore with every step
The scorn of those who cried
Out for his death.

Down the Via Dolorosa
Called the Way of Suffering
Like a lamb, came the Messiah
Christ the King.
And he chose to walk that road
Out of his love
For you and
For me.
Down the Via Dolorosa
All the way
To Calvary

The blood that would cleanse
The souls of all men
Made its way to the heart
Of Jerusalem!

Down the Via Dolorosa

Called the Way of Suffering
Like a lamb, came the Messiah
Christ the King.
And he chose to walk that road
Out of his love
For you and
For me.

Down the Via Dolorosa
All the way
To Calvary

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Paska - Mennonite Easter Bread

As a kid, Easter meant paska.  One week of fluffy, lemony bread, slathered in icing and sprinkles, spread with....spread! Can't have paska without paska spread! (if you say "spread" too many times it starts sounding funny....)

For the record, Easter also is a time to recognize the amazing sacrifice Jesus made for us by taking our sins upon himself. He was perfect, sinless, unblemished. He chose to endure scorn, shame and pain. For me. For you. Can you imagine? God loves YOU so much that he gave up his only son to die on a cross FOR YOU. It blows my mind every time. If you want to know more I'd be so happy to share with you!

Back to the recipe! 

Paska - Mennonite Easter Bread
- makes 6 loaves

***disclaimer: this is a very "involved" recipe but sooooo worth the effort

1 cup  lukewarm water
2 Tbsp yeast
2 tsp  sugar

Combine in a small bowl and set aside.

2 cups milk
1 cup butter/shortning
2 cups sugar

Heat milk in microwave until just before boiling point.  Cut butter into pieces and melt into hot milk.  Add sugar and stir.  Place this mixture in your bread bowl.

10 egg yolks
5 egg whites (set aside)
Rind and juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp  salt

Add yolks, lemon and salt to milk mixture. Beat 5 egg whites and set aside. Put the other 5 in the fridge...for something else. I'm never sure what to do with them.

12 cups flour, separated

Add 6 cups flour and yeast mixture to bowl and mix well.  Fold in the 5 beaten egg whites.  Slowly add the remaining 6 cups of flour and knead well.  The dough will be fairly soft and you'll probably need to grease your hands while kneading. Cover and rise 45 min.  Punch down and rise again 45 min.  Punch down, form 6 loaves and place in greased bread pans.  Cover and rise 45 min.

Preheat oven to 350F.  Place a baking sheet with water on the bottom rack of oven and arrange loaves on top rack. Tent loaves with foil to prevent over-browning.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Loaves will not sound hollow like regular bread when down.  If necessary, slice one loaf down the middle to check. You don't want to dry this bread out!

When loaves are mostly cooled, ice with a regular butter/sugar/milk/vanilla icing. And don't forget the sprinkles!  We slice ours and eat it with paska spread. It's a little bit...different...but don't chicken out. It's sooooo gooood. Some families just eat it toasted with butter - no icing, no spread....but that's just boring!

Paska Spread

1 lb  DRY cottage cheese (one regular size tub)
1/2 cup   sugar
3 Tbsp   softened butter
2 hard boiled egg yolks
1 Tbsp  lemon juice
1 tsp    vanilla

Combine the cottage cheese, sugar, butter and yolks in a food processor.  Add lemon juice and vanilla while mixing. Enjoy!

Do you have something special that you make every Easter?

**EDIT: I'm linkin this great recipe up to Donna's Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors

Wordless Thursday Morning?

We found these beauties while walking on the property of an old insane asylum where the Thompson River meets Kamloops Lake. What a story they tell!

I'm not a mom (yet!) but I'm linkin this up to 5 minutes for Mom's Wordless Wednesday....except it's Thursday morning.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Forgiveness and Unresolved Hurt

Hubs and I are doing a 7 week marriage course called.....The Marriage Course ...go figure. The difference between this and other seminars is that each couple sits at their own little table so you can discuss each topic and questionairre in privacy.  Three cheers for not having to air the dirty laundry! Oh and we also get coffee and dessert EACH WEEK!

This course is specifically designed to get you and your spouse talking about some things that you may have never talked about. Heck, we thought we wouldn't have much to say.....turns out we were wrong! Communication is a beautiful thing.

Last nights' segment was on The Power of Forgiveness and identify unresolved hurt. My love and I found it especially...helpful? I'd like to share with you some exercises to help open the lines of communication.

Have you ever stopped to think about how past hurts are coloring your relationship today? You may not even realize just how much an unresolved hurt influences the way you deal with conflict in your day-to-day life.  It's possible that it may even stem from a previous relationsip.

Do you have a quick temper? Impatient or intolerant? Have you found yourself escaping to work or other activities rather than spending time with your spouse? Is your sleep disturbed? Is your sex drive low? Do you feel like a robot, just going through the motions?

These are all possible symptoms of unresolved hurt in our relationships, and there are many more.

The first step is to IDENTIFY those hurts. Take some time to sit down with your spouse, grab a coffee and two notebooks....and some tissues. 
  1. try to identify ways you may have hurt your partner.  Be honest with yourself and take care not to make excuses or point blame.
  2. now list ways that your partner has hurt you. It may be recent or it may be something that happened a long time ago. Think back to your dating relationship even.  It may be one incident or something that occurs over and over again. Again, be honest with yourself and identify the feelings associated with the hurt. Use "I" sentences.
  3. when you are finished, exchange lists and read how your spouse feels he/she has hurt you and the ways you have hurt your spouse.
  4. take turns "clarifying" each others hurts. Ask for more detail and really try to understand your partner. Do not try and interpret what they have written or try and defend yourself.
Step two is to APOLOGIZE.  It is so important for us to take responsibility for our transgressions against our spouse....even if we still don't quite understand why.  When we confess to God and receive forgiveness from Him, He enables us to see the effects of our actions.

"Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed." Philippians 3:13

Step three is FORGIVE.

 Forgiveness is a choice. Not a feeling. It is not demanding a change before forgiving someone. It is not pretending it doesn't matter. It is not thinking that time alone will heal the hurt.  It won't.  You have to CHOOSE to forgive. You may have to forgive someone many times - even for the same thing.  It is a process.

"Peter came to Jesus and asked, 'Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me?  Up to seven times?' Jesus answered, 'I tell you, not seven times but seventy-seven times seven.'"  Matthew 18:21-22
    Something that really struck me was that "forgiveness is releasing the other person into God's hands, leaving the consequences to Him."  If we continue to hold the transgression in our hearts, we are the ones that will be ensnared by resentment and bitterness.  We have been forgiven by God therefore we must forgive one another.

"Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger.....Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." Ephesians 4:31-32

My love realized that he hadn't forgiven me for my past. I realized that I react to my love's advances negatively in part because of experiences I had in a previous relationship. It was a tearful night.  You might be surprised at what comes bubbling up from the depths.

I challenge you to work through this exercise with your partner...even if you think there couldn't possibly be anything to talk about. Take time together. Pray together. Forgive together. Grow together.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Morning Reflections

The Simple Women's Daybook is a wonderful way to start your day out on the right foot - with a thankful and grateful heart.  We are so blessed to live freely in this beautiful province.

Outside my window: Mostly blue and sunny out today - teasing that summer is just around the corner.  The sun has been a little late in showing itself this spring so I'm hoping this a sign that it's here to stay!

I am thankful for: Time spent with my hubby, his friends and sister-in-law up in God's beautiful creation all weekend.  Even though I was bummed to have to pull out my snow pants once again, there's nothing like being on a snowmobile in untouched powder on top of the world.

Some plans for the week:
  • Get organized. Period.  Somehow even just a weekend away from home throws off my housekeeping groove.
  • Do some Easter baking.  Get ready for another tasty traditional Mennonite Easter recipe!
  • We have another couple moving in with us April 30th so I need to start making room for them... especially in the bathroom.  I haven't had to share my bathroom with another woman in 5 years (PRAY FOR ME...please?)

I am hoping: that the Canucks win the Stanley Cup! Wooooooooo!


I am hearing: nothing but the rattle of my computer under the desk. I think we often forget how important it is to have moments of silence in our lives. I can hear the Holy Spirit's whispering better when I'm still and silent.

I am praying for:
  • my friend S - that she would continue to battle the negative thoughts and anxiety that threatens her relationship with her children.
  • my dearest - that he would be strong and arm himself against the devil's schemes - one day at a time. With God all things are possible.
  • myself - that I would continue to learn how to be a submissive wife - not as a door mat but as a strong, smart, independant woman who loves and supports her husband.
From the kitchen: ummm....gotta be able to see the countertops before I can start on anything!  I will be making Paska this week - traditional Mennonite Easter bread. I might also make some Plumi Moos....we'll see.

Some pictures from our weekend of backcountry snowmobiling at GRIZZLY LODGE :
(Check out the link if you have a moment.  It's a beautiful lodge in the Shuswap area of BC and if you're into snowmobiling it's definitely worth the drive! Oh yeah and did I mention I grew up with the chef's daughter? You will NEVER eat so well in your life...I promise!)

On top of the world

Can you see the red roof in the middle of the picture? That's Grizzly Lodge!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Back on the Bandwagon with delicious Orange Scones

Whoa! It's been a while!

Due to minor....umm...edit.... MAJOR computer difficulties, I have been AWOL from blogland for a number of months. I must admit though, our computer has been up and running for a while now.  I wasn't happy with the amount of time I was spending online - blog about this - work on blog layout- check out blog after blog after blog after blog.  You know the routine.

I am back now - tenatively.  This blog isn't going to be a daily poster - just a place where I can jot down some thoughts, share a recipe or what we've been working on in this old house. I don't want it to rule my life.

With that said, I'd like to bestow on you a delicious new recipe I tried this morning.

It's just a basic scone recipe that I dressed a up a little with some orange juice and rind.

My version went something like this:

3 cups   flour                                  1 tsp      salt
1/2 cup  white sugar                       3/4 cup  cold butter**
5 tsp     baking powder                   1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup  orange juice                       1 Tbsp grated orange rind

** TIP: If you freeze the butter beforehand, you can grate it into the dry ingredients which makes it much easier to cut in.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Cut in butter with knives or pastry ...cutter inner?....(that can't be right).... until crumbles.  Add orange rind and stir.  In a one cup measure, beat egg.  Add orange juice to make 3/4 cup approximately and add milk to make one cup of liquid. The measures will vary with the volume of egg.

Stir liquid into dry ingredients, a little at a time until moistened.  Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead a few times to pull the dough together.  Roll dough out into 1/2 inch thick circle.  Cut into 8 wedges and place on a greased cookie sheet.  Alternatively, I used a clean, empty soup tin to cut circles (more like biscuits than scones).  I got just less than 2 dozen out of a single recipe.

Bake at 400F for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

These were perfect for our ladies bible study brunch.  The hint of orange takes them straight from tea-time to brunch-time!


I'm linking this yummy recipe to :

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

21 Day Organizing Challenge

Toni at A Bowl Full of Lemons is hosting a "21 days to getting organized" challenge.  What a great way to get back into the swing of things after the holidays ransack your home! I don't know about you, but my home always feels ransacked after I've had company.

....sort of.

Well I'm jumping in 10 days late - but in my defense we've been reno'ing the basement so I haven't had much time to do anything else!  Lucky for me, I tackled a few of the projects in Nov/Dec so I'm going to be sneaky and put up my old posts....instead of redo'ing it! A girl can only organize and reorganize so much! I was all ready to jump in on day 6....but it was the dresser drawers and my hubby was sleeping all day (shift worker extraordinair).  So these are the ones I have done....I'm hoping to do the other ones too.

Day 1: The Junk Drawer - check out my new and improved junk drawer.  As you can see I started a Get'er Done series in hopes that I would be inspired to tackle some of the bigger projects around the you can also see...the junk drawer is the first and last project in that series....eek.

Day 5: Under the Kitchen Sink - I had a few moments the other day and I thought I'd tackle this one - how happy was I to open my cupboard and realize that I really didn't need to do any organizing at all under there! Go me!

Check out that gorgeous wall paper under there!
I keep a spray bottle of GreenWorks concentrate mixed with water on my kitchen counter for all spills that require something other than water and elbow grease. The few bottles in the blue bin include some old dusting spray...which I guess I could toss 'cause I use a damp cloth now, some brick cleaner and some dollar store window cleaner that I got as a shower present 4 years ago!  Goes to show how often I clean my windows!  It will be replaced by vinegar and water when the bottle is empty.  The back of the bin is full of old rags and there's an old toothbrush in there too. I don't seem to need anything more than that to tackle even the worst messes!

Day 7: The Pantry  - dun dun dun.  This one needed it REALLY badly so I'm soooo glad I found a few extra minutes between coats of paint to pull everything out and organize.  Here's a before:

 My pantry is a tiny 2 ft closet - I realize I'm lucky to even HAVE a pantry, but oh how I covet those wonderful walk-in pantries with the lights and the frosted glass doors.  One day, one day, you'll see.

My biggest problem was the never-ending collection of bags.  They all had tiny little amounts of...whoknowswhat and because I couldn't always see what all was in there, I kept buying more and more.  Ugh. 

As much as I love beautiful containers, I opted to make use of what I had - canning jars, pickle jars and various plastic containers.  All my bulk items went into their own jars.  I already had a cute set of glass containers from the dollar store that I used for smaller amounts. 

I did splurge and bought two pretty bins for my flour.  I've started buying it in 20kg bags from Costco (cheap like borscht!) so I needed bigger bins so I wasn't trekking downstairs once a week to filler up.

I also bought the burgandy stackables on the right of the top shelf.  In there, I keep my tea towls, dish cloths and onions/garlic.  No more onion and garlic paper all over!

I can't get over how much space I have now! I keep trying to think of what else I can put in there to make more room elsewhere! Love it!

Haha ok, so maybe I've only done three of the days....I thought maybe I had more but oh well.  I'm in the process of tackling the storage area in the laundry room..... here's a before just so you know what I'm dealing with!

That second closet looks about the same as the first.  It needs some serious help - I don't even know what's in there anymore! The worst part about doing storage areas is that if you tackle almost always have to tackle the other one(s).  We have two and I just know I'm going to have to do both at the same time otherwise I'm just gonna throw all this just into the space under the stairs!  I think I can get this done in two days - I'll call it my day 9 and 10 since I don't have toys to organize and sadly I don't have a laundry room either! Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Christmas Recap

I know, I's almost a week into January already.  In my defense, we had "Christmas" with my family on New Years Day so I'm still in recovery mode from the holidays.

After three months of negotiating - THREE MONTHS - we managed to decide on spending 5 days at my hubby's parents place for Christmas and then have my parents and brother/wife come to our house for "Christmas" over New Years.

Holiday negotiating involves multiple phone calls between me, my parents, and my brother.....and occasionally the other two families we call in-laws. Let me clarify that hubs and I had everything alllllll figured out 'til my brother went and got married last year.  Somehow things are much more complicated now. Lord willing, we'll be able to settle into some sort of "holiday schedule" SOON!

Ok that said, our Christmas holidays went really well.  We spent 5 days in beautiful Grand Forks, BC.  Not North Dakota. B.C. Hubs and I both grew up there so it's always nice to go home and see some old faces and places.  We did some ice fishing, and snowboarding and watching movies in front of the fire.

This is how I ice fish..... Sometimes I sit down..but then I fall asleep. So standing is better.

Santa was good to me this year: 

All I need now is #16 on the back of this baby and I'm set! (That's Trevor Linden for the record)

A lot of women complain that their husbands never buy them anything good - NOT ME! My hubby always knows just what to get me! I have been wanting a Canucks jersey forever!

After a few days rest rest I mean frantically cleaning my parents and brother/wife came on the 30th. AND IT WENT WELL! Praise the Lord, there is hope for us. 

We had so much fun playing pond hockey and games that make you do silly things. 

Santa made a second trip just for us and brought us AND my brother and wife:

KitchenAid Artisan Series 5 qt. Stand Mixer - White on White
Read it and weep ladies. I am the proud new owner of this beautiful new KitchenAid Mixer!

And, even though by some strange freak of nature, we had NO snow in town for Christmas, it was still full of fun and family. Plus, you can always find snow up here when you need to :)