Paintstick Review

April 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY, Reviews & Giveaways

HomeRight EZ-Twist Paintstick

I was very excited to review this EZ-Twist Paintstick by Homeright.  I have several areas I am going to be painting in my house.  I was starting with my dining room.

dining room

I was being daring with colors. I remember a friend who had a room that was periwinkle and I loved it.  Trying to find the right color was the hard part. Bright enough, and that combination of blue and purple that isn’t too strong one way or the other. I ended up going with the color on the left.  The lighting really effects it.

paint samplesI watched the videos that I was sent of the paintstick being used and I was psyched! This looked awesome! It was so easy and fast!

When the box came from HomeRight I had a few other things to review also!  There was a Quick Painter and Quick Mask and a Paint Sprayer (which is not part of the package being given away today -  I will review later once we can try it)

Homeright

The Quick mask is a combo tape and drop cloth for edging.

Quick mask

It is set up like a roll of packing tape with a sharp edge to cut.

Quick mask

This was nice. You can tape along the edge and then pull out the drop cloth. It isn’t a full room drop cloth.. just edging.  You just have to be careful that you don’t pull it on the sharp edge side.. (just sayin’.. not that I might have done it or anything, but if you were to do that I bet you would tear the drop cloth.  LOL)

Quick mask

I also used it on the edge of the windows.

quick mask

It worked well although I had to be careful around the corners. It didn’t always stick as well there and I had to fix it on most corners before I painted them.  But I don’t know that it was much different than most other tapes I’ve used in the corners.  I would use it again.  It was nice to have the drop cloth along the edges.

They also included the Quick Painter.  I have used a tool similar (the red handle one) and really liked it.  But this had a tube to load, so it seemed really convenient.  There was not a roller edge, so it didn’t work for the ceiling edges, but it was nice especially around the window edges.

quick painter

There was no problem loading it up.Just fill it up like a squirt gun.

quick edge

Once the paint was loaded it was very easy to manage.

quick painter

I did learn that you have to be careful when you push the little pump handle to get the paint flowing.  I first tried it when the brush was not on the wall and it came flying out.  Thank goodness for my Quick mask drop cloth! Really!!   The trigger seemed a little touchy.  Not hard enough and I had to paint over things a couple of times because I wasn’t getting enough paint. Just a little too hard and I had too much with several big drips down my drop cloth to prove it.

But when I had the right amount, it worked great.  I think it just takes a little getting used to the “feel” of the trigger for it to be a fantastic tool.

Now for the EZ-Twist Paintstick!  Please be sure to watch the whole thing through. I did have some trouble with it… but for my husband it worked with ease.

I also think a big factor may have been that the paint I used was very thick. I got the Behr ultra paint with primer all in one. I think next time I will use a thinner paint and I bet I would have better results.

behr ultra paintI want to point out that the splash guard around the roller is very nice. You don’t get the splatters that you get with a traditional roller. If you noticed, my husband walked in wearing his coat and didn’t take it off while he tried the paintstick. He didn’t have any paint on him.

The paint in the handle goes pretty far.  That was one of the things I wanted to see.  How far one “handles worth” goes. It holds 18 oz of paint and will paint a 8′x8′ wall according to HomeRight.  I do agree that it did seem to go a long way on the 2nd coat.

You don’t have any paint trays to worry about sitting around which is really nice.

I would advise you to follow the directions and white down the roller first and let it dry. There is a bit of lint on it if you don’t, but it is explained in the directions that wetting it down first and letting it dry will help solve this issue.

I can recommend this after watching my husband use it.  I think there is a bit of a learning curve, and I would advise you not to use a really thick paint with it.  I think that was the main problem for me.

You might want to go to the HomeRight FB page. There are many people who have taken their EZ-Twist paint challenge and did not have the difficulties I did. I just watched some more myself and keep wondering why I had such troubles.

To Enter to Win one of TEN Ultimate Home Painting Kits!

These kits will include the EZ-Twist Paintstick, the Quick Painter and the Quick Mask like I showed you above.

Tell me: Why you need painting done around your house? **Be sure to come back here and leave me your answer in your comment. Your e-mail has to either in your comment or on your profile.

FOR EXTRA CHANCES TO WIN:

**Each of these HAS to have a separate comment to win. The winner is picked using Random.org. It just goes the number of comments….not by what you say.

1) Post a picture of the room you would like to paint on my FB page saying “This it the room I want to paint with the EZ-Twist Paintstick.“  (5 chances to win, be sure to leave the link and make 5 separate comments below)

2) Subscribe to my Organize with Sandy blog This is for 1 chance to win!

3) Follow me on Twitter @OrganizerSandy (Leave me your twitter name) 1 chance

4) Stumble one of my posts for 5 extra chances to win. (tell me which post. Post 5 comment entries)

5) Tweet this out up to 3 times a day. You can use the tweet button at the top to make it easy.  ( Pls leave your url link) 1 chance for each tweet.

See lots of way to enter!!

This contest will run until 11:59pm est on Thursday , May 12, 2011 **THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED**

Any comment that comes in after the above time will be deleted. This is open to US mailing addresses only. One person per mailing address only. Winner will be chosen by Random.org

If you are chosen as one of the 10 winners, I will ask you if you would mind if the rep from HomeRight contacted you. They would love it if you wanted to post a video for their FB page on your experience. But this will not be a requirement and I would not release your information without your permission.

You will have 48 hours to reply to my e-mail if you are picked as the winner, or else I will go on to the next winning number.

I was given the above paint system to review. The pictures and videos and opinions are my own.

Also be sure to enter my other Painting supply giveaway going on until May 2, 2011

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Dining Room Decorating

April 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room

I Need More Help From You

Most of you know I’m not a decorating diva.  My idea of decorating is organizing. lol So, I once again need your help.

You all helped me with ideas for the dining room. Here is a before picture to refresh you.

dining room before

Here is the advice that I got from you that I took:

1) Remove the old lady swag above the window – Done
2) Move the craft cart (you can’t see, but on little wall by this end of the wall.) out.  – Done
3) Move the china cabinet to the corner where the craft cart was. – Done
4) Move the pie safe out – Done
5) Paint the table and chairs so the chairs all match – Going to do.

I painted the room a periwinkle color. I know that many of you think I’m a bit crazy for that move. But I have seen a room that inspired me and I’m going with it.

My plan so far:

1) Paint the top of the table and the seat of the chairs black.
2) Paint the legs of the table (or leave them alone) and backs of all chairs cream
3) Use a combination of black and cream decorations on the walls
4) refinish the chandelier cream, with crystals a cord cover. Here is my inspiration picture for that.
chandelier

I can’t remember where I found this picture, I didn’t label it like I normally do.  I know it was on a blog and I have searched for it, if anyone knows who’s it is, please let me know so I can give them proper credit.

First question:  Should I use a medallion on the ceiling?  I was going to and I was going to paint it periwinkle, but my sister told me not to paint it.. it wouldn’t look good (and she is a great decorator). But I do like the looks of this one that is the white color. Do you think I should have it and leave it white or cream?  (my ceiling is white)

This is what the room looks like now after painting and before decorating

periwinkle dining room

I bought my Hemnes sofa table at Ikea last weekend.  But…. they didn’t have the black brown color.  They didn’t know when it was coming in, so I purchased the gray color (which I don’t like) and I’m going to paint it black to match the table.  I am going to put this on the far wall, underneath the metal sculpture that is on the wall.  I plan to have an arrangement of things including the metal piece on the wall above it.  hemnes sofa table gray-brownHere are the items I have gathered and want advice on how to use.   The black/brown metal swirl wall decor is just hanging on a big screw that was already there.
dining room decorating items

I was thinking of painting the metal sculpture cream color. Do you like it? Should I use it?

metal sculpture

This is the  basket (I got four of them)  I got to go in the Hemnes table. You can see more of how they look and what the table will look like on my Saturday Shopping post I did on the Ikea table here… when I first saw this table and had no idea how I could use it in my house.

basket from IkeaSee the little lamp?  It is a candle holder. I found it at Old Time Pottery. I thought it was so cute and would bring the crystals from the chandelier (once I do it) together.  It will sit on the Hemnes table.
candle holder from Old Time Pottery

Here are some of the other things I got that I liked.

decorate
The black long picture frame has eight places for pictures. I am going to put a picture of each of our kids in there.  Not sure where to hang that yet. I could go above the window or a doorway if I wanted to. Or… it could go long ways top to bottom on a wall.

picture frame
The small wooden mirrors I found at Ikea for just a couple dollars each.  I thought I’d leave the two black and paint the other two cream.  I thought they would somehow work in the wall arrangement on the big wall.

mirrors

I also have this mirror.  I am not sure if I am going to use it in this room or not.  I also have considered painting it, although I am thinking this one came from my husband’s side.. and he isn’t a fan of covering up nice wood.

What do you think I should do?
wooden mirrorHere is a better picture of the top of it.  I’m kind of thinking it would look good cream color.

wooden mirror

I saw these two black metal shelves at Old Time Pottery and liked them. One is slightly larger than the other. I thought I could leave them the black or paint them. I thought they might work well on one of the smaller side walls. Suggestions? Do you like them? Should they go on a wall by themselves, or should I use them in the main wall decorating arrangement?

metal shelves

It might be easier to see what they look like from this picture:

metal decorator shelf

I also thought I would hang the chore board / schedule board in here for the kids. I painted this frame the cream color to use in here.

communication board

I was thinking it could go on this smaller wall to the right.

dining room The short wall that is next to the kitchen. The wall is larger than it appears in this picture. It is about 36″ across.

Here are the other walls that I need to decorate.  The wall to the left of the main wall, by the window.

dining room decorate

I am planning on cream drapes of some sort, so some of that wall will have cream on it.

Here is my corner china cabinet.  The front door and hallway are to the right of this. The kitchen is to the left.

china cabinet

I also have the wall to the left of the window.

dining room decorate

I am also thinking of getting the initial “J” and painting it cream to use in the main wall arrangement. I like how those look.
Although I like a lot of the decorating ideas that I see with the chalkboard, cream etc… in them – most of them are the older antique look. The wore edges, older decor, shabby chic I think.  I don’t like the antique look. I don’t want the older, or made to look older look.

Here is the room again, to refresh your memory.

dining room decorate

So… help me.  Where do you think things should go? Should I paint them cream or black?

I need you comments and ideas!

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Skin Cancer

April 26, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Health & Safety

Basal Cell Cancer and Mohs Surgery

surgery lightDo you think much about skin cancer when you go outside to tan?  I never used to.  I used to love to layout.  Heck, we used to use baby oil to help us tan when I was young.

I just had surgery for skin cancer yesterday. I had a basal cell skin cancer on my nose and had to have the Mohs surgery preformed. I wanted to share with you, so that hopefully you won’t have to have it done at anytime in your lifetime… or you will get that questionable mole or spot checked out by your dermatologist.   Don’t worry.. I won’t show you the actual wound.. nothing gross (just my face…ewwww…)

My Mom passed away from melanoma 11 years ago.

My Dad has had multiple basal cell cancers removed, almost all from his face.  He used to play golf a lot and was exposed to a lot of sun. He has had flaps to repair where they had taken the basal cell cancers.

Now… me.  I have been going in to the dermatologist almost every 6 months for several years.  I get a total body scan. My dermatologist Dr. Kelley Zyniewicz with Central Ohio Skin and Cancer is wonderful.  She is very pro active with me (“with your family history Sandy…” ) and takes off anything she sees, along with anything I am worried about.  My motto has become, “Better scars than dead”.  I have had well over a dozen dysplastic nevus off, one really bad one on the back of my calf.

But this has been my first experience with a basal cell cancer.  I went in for my basic every six month skin check and my dermatologist wanted to know how long this place on my nose had been there. I said, “I don’t know, a few weeks, I think it is a zit”.  She said she was taking it off.  She was right… it was a basal cell.

I want you to look at it. Even though getting this close to my face is kind of gross, it really didn’t look like much of anything did it?  It didn’t hurt or bother me at all. It had only been there a few weeks as far as I know. So I thought it was a zit.

basal cell cancer

There are three kind of skin cancers:

Melanoma – The worse skin cancer.  This one will metastasize to other organs of your body and has the highest death rates from skin cancer.

Squamous Cell - This is the least common of the three skin cancers.  It usually doesn’t cause problems when caught early. But it can also metastasize to other parts of the body.

Basal Cell - This kind of skin cancer won’t kill you. It doesn’t metastasize, but it can disfigure you.  It grows like an ice berg. What you see above the surface (what we see) is only the tip of the ice berg. The rest of the ice berg is underneath and it is hard to tell how large it is.   They treat it by doing what they call Mohs Surgery.

Mohs Surgery - They go in after you have been diagnosed with the skin cancer.  My Doctor originally took off the little bump I had a couple weeks ago. I got the results back last week that it was a basal cell cancer. I had my appointment yesterday for the Mohs.

They told me to pack a lunch, or I could go out to lunch – but to plan on being there all day.  My appointment was at 8:30am.

mohs surgeryI went back and they did the first “pass”. They removed part of the area.  This was me after she had me numbed and I was waiting for the Doctor to come in and start surgery.  I mean… who really takes a picture of them self right before surgery? lol

mohs surgery

They put a pressure dressing on me and I went out in the smaller private waiting room to wait.  It took close to 2 hours and they told me they didn’t get it all.  Great isn’t it?

mohs surgeryAbout 12:15 they told me that they did get it all, but that it would still take a little time for them to bring me back to close the wound.

Once back in the room, she asked if I could look at it.  I said sure.  It was bigger than a pencil eraser, but smaller than a dime, circular and was black because they had cauterized it to stop the bleeding.

Here is what threw me… I thought they could just stitch it up.  But she said because it was deeper and more extensive than they thought they could do one of two things.

1) Skin Graft – Take a small piece of skin from in front of my ear and transplant it. The negative part of this is that the skin color won’t match. It will be whiter than the skin on my nose.

2) Flap surgery – If she were to do this surgery, she would use a piece of skin that attaches to my nose. She would have gone down the edge of my nose towards my lip. This keeps the skin and blood supply alive to heal.  But I would have had a scar.

I picked the skin graft, but inside I was crying.  I had no idea that only after 2 times going back that this was a possibility. I thought these procedures were for much more extensive repairs.  I was actually glad for the anesthetic injection this time because I was able to let out some real tears along with the ones that came from the stinging so close to my eyes.

The took a place in front of my ear that required 4 sutures and put a bandage over that. Then the actual graft she said had 6 sutures in it.

Here is me this morning: I was surprised my eye wasn’t all swollen and black like they said it might be. It is a little dark, and you can see the swelling just above the dressing on the side of my nose.  I do know I’m wiped out today. That is pretty wimpy isn’t it? It isnt’ like I had some big surgery or anything.

mohs surgery

I get to wear that beauty on my nose a full week!!  I am not allowed to get it wet or remove it at all.  The graft has to “take”.  I guess there is an actual dressing sutured over the graft too.  The one on over the “donor” site or the place in front of my ear I can take off today.

So.. moral of the story is:   USE SUNSCREEN and GO TO YOUR DERMATOLOGIST for checks!!  A nice tan isn’t worth dying over or having to have surgeries to remove skin cancers for! Really!

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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 19

How Has Your Decorating Been Going?

Organizing Mission Monday

I have a lot of plans, and not enough time?  Does that sound familiar?  I did go to Ikea this past weekend and purchased a couple things that I am excited about.

Remember one of my Shopping Saturday wishes?  The Ikea Hemnes Sofa Table? Part of my plan with my dining room is to include this.  I was so excited to buy it (my sissy gave me some birthday money that I was using on it – Thanks Sis!).  But when I got there this last weekend, they were out of them.  They didn’t know when they would get them back in, but she knew it wouldn’t be before the end of May. They did have the white and the brown-grey color.  So, I decided to get the brown-grey color, and I will paint it the same color that I paint the top of the table.  Black I think.  But of course, that is going to take more time.  I am glad I have the two Skil Sanders,  to review! They are going to come in very handy for these two projects.

In my garage I am going to be painting two walls that are dry walled and will make my mud room.  Aggghhh.. I need more hours in the day!

If you have any painting projects, be sure to look at my review on the Green Toad pivoting paintbrushes! They really are nice. I haven’t had many people trying to win them yet, and I’m surprised.

Check out my Featured Bloggers This Week.

Holly from 504 Main.com  made this great Chalkboard Calendar Command Center.

Look how cute this is! Aren’t the little hanging dates a neat idea?  Then each month you can just rearrange the disc dates for the next month.

504 Main

Here is another view

504 main

And the entire Command Center

504 main

I love this!  You can see the tutorial on Holly’s blog post on 504 Main on  how to make it.

Megan from Declutter Daily’s Chalkboard Painted Wall.

Megan had some older Chalkboard paint and her solution for decluttering it from her home was… to use it! She painted a wall her kids room and surprised them with an entire chalkboard wall.

Declutter daily

Can’t you just imagine how fun that would have been to come home to .. as a kid?

declutter daily

Stop by Megan’s blog and see the rest of her chalkboard wall post on Declutter Daily.

Be sure to stop by both of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love” and mention you saw them here!

For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!

Organizing Mission Monday

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If this code isn’t working, you can pick it up off my sidebar. (I’m having trouble with these codes on my actual posts.. sorry)

Link up to my Link Party

I would love to see your decorating posts, DIY posts this week. But as always you can link up any organizing or cleaning post to my ink party.

Organizing Mission Monday

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(You can also pick up this button off my sidebar, if this one isn’t working right for you…)

Rules

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog

2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)

3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it

4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning or decorating

5) No sales pitches or web sites.

6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.

8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.

If You Are On A Reader and Want to View All the Great Link Up’s Please Click Here.

This will be open until Saturday night April 30, 2011

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New Puppy

April 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Family & Friends, Pets

No Bunny, Just a Puppy For Easter

Happy Easter Everyone!

I will be taking the weekend off enjoying a new puppy. Here are some pictures. I picked her up last night through a puppy adoption.

Her mother is only 2 years old. Had a litter of 16 pups last year and the people who owned her brought her in to give her up the day before she gave birth to her 2nd litter of 13 pups. (Their other dog at home a shepherd was not neutered.)

She is 8 weeks old.  She is part lab and shepherd.  My other two dogs aren’t sure what to think yet, but they are being very gentle with her.

This is when she was 6 weeks old with some of her litter mates.  She has on the pink collar.

tali

Here she is now.

tali

tali

tali

tali

tali

tali

They were banning together.  They aren’t too sure what to think of her yet. They are a bit jealous.

sadie

She really seems to like this new toy. It is a Snugglepuppie. It has a heartbeat and a warmer!

tali

I didn’t use it on the way home from picking her up last night (2 hour drive) and she yipped and cried the whole way. I did use it last night and she slept from 11pm-4:30am! Then after going outside and going potty, she slept again from 5-6:30.  So I do recommend it. But, the only negative is that the disposable heater is only good for 20 hours, and it only came with 2. But they are something you can buy on your own too.  Hopefully she won’t need them too long.

taliBy the way, I found and paid for this product – it is not an “official” review. I just wanted to let you know about it.

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Green Toad Pivoting Paint Brush Review

April 21, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Reviews & Giveaways

An Eco-Friendly Pivoting Paintbrush!

Congrats to Karen @Karenmed409 for winning the giveaway! Random.org picked #54!

green toad pivoting paint brush system

Painting walls of your home, is not a chore very many people enjoy. I know I sure don’t.  I get sore, my hand cramps up from the paintbrushes or rollers and I actually broke my ankle painting one time – although that had nothing to do with the paintbrush.  Hint: Don’t use a chair to stand on… it may tip. Just sayin….

I got the chance to review the Green Toad Pivoting Paint Brush last weekend when I painted my dining room. I used it for the trim and corners.  I told them I didn’t want to review the roller because I was reviewing a different paint roller system, but I wish I had offered to try that too – just to see what it was like.

Green toad pivoting paint brush

As you can see, the handle is bent! The  ergonomic pivoting paint brush was designed with the help of physical therapists. Which I think is cool. So many people have issues like carpel tunnel or arthritis and something like painting can be really hard to do.  I will tell you that as I was using my old traditional paint roller to do my dining room walls, my hand was cramping up like crazy. That is the reason I said I would have liked to have tried their paint roller with this handle – to see if it had the same effect. But I bet I wouldn’t have had the cramping.

Now… the other cool part about this brush. The pivoting part.  The brush head turns  360-degrees and locks into eight different positions! You don’t have to do any fancy stuff, it just turns and kind of clicks and then you can tell when it is locked in place.

green toad pivioting paint brush

So…. let’s say you are painting around a light socket. (Ok… so I forgot to get more than picture of when I was actually painting, so I took most of these this morning and yes… I know the electrical socket cover comes off when you paint. But I do have video down a little further from when I painted)

Turn the brush head this direction to do a space like this.

green toad pivoting paint brush

Then to do underneath it, you can turn your brush head this way.

green toad pivoting paint brush

The rubber grips make it easy to hold and the built in finger grooves help to make it comfortable to hold. It is also very light and that makes a difference.

Yes.. this is the picture of when I was actually painting. Notice light socket off the wall, paint on the brush and on my hand! lol! You can see the natural finger grooves and a  rubber place where your thumb naturally sits.  There is a small black button underneath that you push to release the brush head. Then the black oval grips on the actual paint head help make it easy to turn the brush head when changing positions (especially if you have paint on your hands) Look at the flat edge of the brush – the black right by the bristles – that is a drip guard that helps any dripping you may have.  I didn’t have any problems with any bristles coming out. I hate that when you get a paint brush and you have to pick the bristles off the wall that have fallen out of the brush. ewww…

(Update:  I used these again this last week to paint my bedroom March 2012) and I had a terrible problem with bristles falling out. The one brush I was opened, but I do not think I had used it with any paint. The other brush I opened and it wasn’t as bad, but I still lost a few bristles out of that one.)

green toad pivoting paint brush

Now you can see it in action:

Now for the “green” part.  It really is green! I mean it is environmentally friendly! All the plastic parts which include the handle, the brush, the brush heads, the bristles and most of the internal parts are treated with Earthgreen polymers.  Evidently this makes them biodegradable. They can be recycled and they are even compostable! So how can you argue with that? I think that is great that the company went to the effort and extra step to make them “green”.

There are different size brush heads. The 1.5 and 2.5 inch tapered brushes, the 2 and 3 inch straight brushes and the 4, 6 and 9 inch rollers.

They are also have roller extension poles, paint pad attachments (I love those!) and earth-friendly paint trays in development! So this is only getting better.

green toad pivoting paint brush system

I am extremely happy with the Green Toad pivoting paintbrush.  I actually hid them from my husband and kids!  They are going to be painting the shed out back, and I want to keep these nice to work on some other painting projects I am going to undertake soon.

What I liked:

1) Comfortable to hold
2) Easy to turn angle & change paint brush heads
3) Bristles didn’t fall out
4) Nice edge on the tapered brush. I could paint my ceiling edge without taping off.
5) The rubber grips were in the perfect place
6) Easy to clean up
7) Environmentally friendly
8) Priced right!

What I didn’t like:

1) I didn’t also ask for the paint roller
2) It would be fun in pink
3) I don’t know if there would be a time that I would want the handle to be able to be all the way straight like a traditional paintbrush or not.

To Enter to Win a Green Toad Pivoting Paint Brush system!

Go to the The Green Toad.net and look at the paintbrush on the main page. There are 8 highlighted green dots. Tell me what 2 features of the paintbrush are, according to those dots.  You will be entering to win a system like in the last picture on this post. **Be sure to come back here and leave me your answer in your comment. Your e-mail has to either in your comment or on your profile.

FOR EXTRA CHANCES TO WIN:

**Each of these HAS to have a separate comment to win. The winner is picked using Random.org. It just goes the number of comments….not by what you say.

1) Stumble this post with a brief review – The button is the first one at very bottom of this post under where it says “Sharing is Caring” (For 5 extra chances to win! I have to see the review – leave separate posts)

2) Subscribe to my Organize with Sandy blog This is for 1 chance to win!

3) Follow me on Twitter @OrganizerSandy (Leave me your twitter name) 1 chance

4) Follow @GreenToadBrush on Twitter.(Leave me your twitter name) 1 chance

5) Tweet this out up to 3 times a day. You can use the tweet button at the top to make it easy.  ( Pls leave your url link) 1 chance for each tweet.

See lots of way to enter!!

This contest will run until 11:59pm est on Monday, May 2, 2011  *THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED*

Any comment that comes in after the above time will be deleted. This is open to US mailing addresses only. One person per mailing address only. Winner will be chosen by Random.org

You will have 48 hours to reply to my e-mail if you are picked as the winner, or else I will go on to the next winning number.

I was given the above paint system to review. The pictures and videos and opinions are my own.

Be Sure to check out my other painting supply giveaway here that ends May 12, 2011

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Dining Room Paint

April 20, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Decorating, Dining room, DIY

The Periwinkle Adventure Begins

I am going to give you a sneak peak into the beginning of my dining room decorating.  I started off with the paint.

Here’s the deal.  I would have loved a dark taupe.  My husband does not want any shade of what he calls “masking tape”.  Our entire house is that blah light tan neutral color now. Thinking we were going to sell it, we didn’t want to venture into “colors”.

When I thought of a fun color, I remember back about 15 years ago to a friend who had a periwinkle kitchen. It was gorgeous!  I knew the problem would be getting the color right.

I don’t like blues, I love purple, but didn’t want it to be “purple” either.  I wanted periwinkle.

Here is what happened.  I painted it and was really upset… because this is what it looked like.

Purple! ugh! I kept thinking when I was painting it that it would darken up. It did a little.

Looks Purple

periwinkle dining room

My husband was saying, “Well hun, it is appropriate for Easter, should we decorate with chicks and bunnies?”  Of course he was teasing, but I wasn’t in the mood for teasing.

I went and got the paint color chart I used to see if Behr paint messed up when the color matched the Gliddon paint sample.

It is the 2nd one in from the left…. top.  It looks like it matches. But look.. this is the blue page of paints, not purple!

Periwinkle – No light

periwinkle

But then…..

I turned off the dining room light…. and it was periwinkle.  I couldn’t believe the difference just from the light!

Periwinkle – No Light

periwinkle dining room

Look again….  Light on.. (scroll back and forth between these two).  See the difference?

Light on – Purple

periwinkle dining room

So now I am happy. I know I just have to find the right light bulb to take away the “rose” color in the light so that it will take that purple look out.

Does anyone know what kind of light bulb I need to buy so that the light will be more natural and not bring in that rose color?

I am going to be bringing you a couple reviews and giveaways real soon on items I used to help paint this room… so be watching!!

Hint…. Green Toad Pivoting Paint Brush and the Home Right EZ Twist Paint Stick

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Planning Board

DIY Chalkboard & Dry Erase Scheduling Planning Board

planning board

Creating your own schedule board that is geared towards your children/ family doesn’t have to be hard. It can be a family communication board, weekly calendar, chore board for the kids, or combination board, or planning board like I created.

I made karate calendar / job board for the triplets.  Their karate schedule is different most every night. It also changes a couple times a year.

I started off with finding a frame. I had one that I really liked, was the right size, but the color wasn’t right. So… I spray painted it.

frame

Step one  – Prime and paint the frame.

This is what I used for primer.  I also got the Krylon paint.

primer

I used an Dover white gloss spray paint and it took several coats.

spray paint

Step 2: Gathered your other supplies

craft supplies

I had the frame, Chalkboard Contact Paper, 18″ x 6′ and the  Liquid Chalk – Works like a Marker Dries like Chalk – Set of 8 Earthy Colors ,a glue gun, an x-acto knife and cutting board and a ruler. I also purchased a long narrow magnetic dry erase board that fit half of the frame.

But I also needed a few other things.  I had purchased this Elmer’s Tri-Fold Foam Display board from Walmart for another organizing project I am planning in the future. I knew I wouldn’t use it all for that project, so this would work perfect. It is light weight and thick enough.

Elmers Tri-Fold Board

I also bought some small self laminating sheets.

photo laminating sheets

I had magnets that you can adhere your business card to.

magnets

Then I found those cute small clothes pins when I was in Walmart too. They were just too cute. I also bought 3 yards (I didn’t need all of that) of a thicker ribbon and some thinner robe like ribbon (for the name cards) along with white hooks.

Step 3: Measure the space that the Elmer’s foam board needs to be cut to fit.

First position the dry erase board where it will fit. Then measure to cut the foam board.
craftI used the X-acto knife to cut the foam display board. It made it easier than scissors to cut and you get a cleaner line.
xacto

Step 4: Cut the chalkboard contact paper to cover the Elmer’s foam board.

chalkboard contact paper

You don’t have to cover the back of the board too. Just bring around the edges and make sure you have a smooth surface on the front without wrinkles or air bubbles.

chalkboard contact paper

Wrap the edges under and then on the ends I did trim off some of the excess contact paper with the x-acto knife. I didn’t want to take off both layers, I just wanted to thin it down when I folded it over.

chalkboard contact paper

Step 5: Position the two boards into place.

I first cut a piece of ribbon that would cover up where the two surfaces meet and hot glued to the dry erase board.  I positioned it so that it was half off the dry erase board.

I put hot glue around the inside ridge edge of the frame where the boards would lay.

I then placed the dry erase board with ribbon attached into the frame (good side down).  I then put the chalkboard covered foam board into place. I first hot glued the edge of the chalkboard foam piece that would meet up against the dry erase board. Once they were in place I held it up without turning it over to make sure the ribbon was in place and then pushed on it to make sure it would adhere to the chalkboard piece.  This is what the back side now looks like.

craft

I also gave a squirt of some hot glue in between the crack where the two pieces meet.

hot glue gun

Turn it over carefully once it has dried and this is what it looks like at this stage. From here you can customize it.  You may want to leave the top blank for hand written notes or magnets. (See the ribbon across the middle?

communication board

Step 6: Put the screws in place.

I just purchased the small hook screws. I didn’t need to pre-drill them, I just positioned them and screwed three of them in the bottom, one for each of the triplets.  Then two across the top for the ribbon to tie onto to hang it.

hooks

Step 7: Make the Name Cards

I got out some of my old business cards and used those.  I put two of them together for a little thicker base.  Then I covered those in the chalkboard contact paper.

business cards

Once I covered three of those I cut the thinner ribbon to the length I wanted. I did bring it down the side of the business card to fully measure.

I then wrote each of the kids names on the chalkboard covered name card in the chalkboard markers. Be sure to let them dry completely before you complete the next step.

chalkboard markers I then opened up one of the laminating cards and placed the name card upside down on. I placed the string down along the edge of it and then covered the laminating sheet. Be sure to tuck the other side of the string down.

name card

Step 8: Make the clothes pin magnets

I again took one of magnets for the  business cards.  I covered the sticky side with a piece of the chalkboard contact paper.  I then cut it into two strips length wise. I then used the hot glue gun and glued the clothes pin onto the chalkboard contact paper covered side.

clothes pin magnet

I made one for each day of the week.  I only used Monday – Saturday on my board though. The kids don’t have karate on Sundays, so I didn’t want to crowd them.

Step 9: Make the small cards with the time on them.

I then cut up some of my old business cards in half. Covered those with the chalkboard contact paper and wrote the times on those.

cards

Step 10: Write the jobs on the chore board.

I put a number 1, 2 and 3 on there, because the triplets change seats at the dinner table.  They will have their seat assignment, and chore for a week at a time.

chore boardRemember if you mess up, you can use a wet cloth and erase .. and start over.

Step 11: Put it all together

The weekly karate schedule

clothes pin board


schedule

The top bow. It hides the hook that it is hanging from.

bow

The weekly chore board and seat assignment for the triplets.

chore board

The final project

planning board

Isn’t it cute?  I am really excited about using it.  It is going to go against a periwinkle wall when my dining room is finished.

 

I Love Your Comments!

I’m linking this post up to these lovely blogs:

Cherished Bliss - Craft and Tell Tuesdays
Bella Before and After – Amaze me August
Tip Junkie – Handmade Projects
A Bowl Full of Lemons – One Project at  Time


This project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for #collectivebias. The pictures, project and thoughts are my own.





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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 18

April 18, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Organizing & DYI Monday Link Party

Let’s Talk Decorating!

organizing mission monday

I have decided my style of decorating is Organizational Decorating! lol I like things to look nice, but I want functional in my decorating. I’m not a big knick knack person (duh).

Thanks all of you for the links you have put up over the last 3 week while I was doing my series on the kitchen.

I am going to be moving into decorating this week.  I am hoping to continue it into next week (hoping that my dining room will be complete by then.  (But soon after comes the making of my new mud room area in my garage!  I’m having fun

See my Featured Bloggers This Week!

Toni from A Bowl Full of Lemons – Created  Topiaries for her mantel

a bowl full of lemons She wanted to have toparies for her mantel, but wanted to do it inexpensively.  She did a great job doing that. Look at how nice that looks on her mantel.

a bowl full of lemons makes topiaryYou can get her whole tutorial on her post for her Link Party Tuesday post called One Project at a Time.

Suzanne from Delightfully Organized – Tour My Pantry

Suzanne reorganized her pantry, even painted it! She even installed pull out units on her shelves. I really like these!  (But anytime I find them I decide they are out of my budget) But look how nice they work!  But she is also lucky enough to have wooden shelves instead of wire (which you would need for these)

delightfully organized pantry

She has also used wire racks on her walls to add more space, and on the floor.

delightfully organized And look!!  She also has found the joy of the Command hooks!

delightfully organized hooksYou will find several more ways that she has used the Command hooks and other wire organizers. So be sure to stop by for some more great ways to organize you pantry.  You will also get to see the actual “before” and “after” pictures of her pantry on her post “Tour My Pantry”.

Phaedra from Phaedra’s Adventure

Here is a great post on organizing meals.  Phaedra didn’t want to go to fast food restaurants anymore and realized she often went because she didn’t have food prepared.  So she took care of that problem.

Phaedra's AdventuresDoesn’t that look like an awesome freezer?  She also has cookies bagged up, fruit ready to go and that afternoon snacking food ready!

phaedra's adventures 2

She is able to grab quickly what she needs for her day and can avoid stopping at the fast food restaurants. Check out how she has it all organized on her post – Meal Organization.

Be sure to stop by all three of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love” and mention you saw them here!

For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!

Organizing Mission Monday

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If this code isn’t working, you can pick it up off my sidebar. (I’m having trouble with these codes on my actual posts.. sorry)

Link up to my Link Party

I would love to see your decorating posts, DIY posts this week. But as always you can link up any organizing or cleaning post to my ink party.

You will see just the beginning of my dining room decorating this week.  I’m getting a piece next Saturday from Ikea to be able to finish it off! So that will hopefully be next week for the finished project.

Organizing Mission Monday

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(You can also pick up this button off my sidebar, if this one isn’t working right for you…)

Rules

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog

2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)

3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it

4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning

5) No sales pitches or web sites.

6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.

8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

Be sure to check out my list of link parties

If you have a link party.. please link it up! Underneath the daily buttons there is a list of text links I have compiled too! (Many more there!)

If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.

If You Are On A Reader and Want to View All the Great Link Up’s Please Click Here.

This will be open until Saturday night April 30, 2011

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Fire Protection

April 15, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Cleaning, Family & Friends, Health & Safety

NFPA – National Fire Protection Association and Sparky The Dog

Spring cleaning is the perfect time to check on all those wires and cords. Hopefully you are moving furniture and cleaning and dusting all the surfaces of your house.  So don’t neglect the electrical wires!

You all know Sparky the fire dog right?  I had the pleasure of interviewing him (via email) to give you some tips on how to keep your home safe in regards to wire and cord safety.

Did you know that according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) that extension cords that we overload can get really hot and could create real fire risk?  NFPA suggests that as part of our spring cleaning each year we need to check our electrical wires throughout our homes.

They also say that electricity is a leading cause of home fires in the U.S. It’s because we overload extension cords or plus, there is wiring not done to code, we have damaged cords or loose connections that can create these fires.

Sparky.org is a cute web site that has games and activities for children to do to learn about fire safety.

I created some questions that Sparky answered. Take a few minutes to read through them, there may be some info that you weren’t aware of.

 

sparky firedog

#1 Sandy: How do you know if your electric system is up to code?
Sparky: A home would be determined to be code compliant by  an electrical inspector.

#2 Sandy: What are some key things to look for when it comes to your electrical wires?
Sparky: Among many, damage or discoloration of a wire are both common indicators of an issue.

#3 Sandy: How do you know if you have too many plugs in one room if you don’t blow a short?
Sparky: This is something that typically needs to be addressed on a case-by-case basis.  If a circuit breaker trips or a fuse blows, it is usually an indication that the circuit is overloaded.

#4 Sandy: What is the best thing to do if you have something electric (for instance a lamp) that sometimes goes off by itself and there isn’t something obviously wrong (such as a loose light bulb)?
Sparky: Have it repaired by a qualified person or replace it.

#5 Sandy: Is it alright to plug an extension cord into a power strip?
Sparky: It is best not to plug an extension cord into a power strip.

#6 Sandy: If you run over an extension cord with a vacuum cleaner and it cuts some of the plastic, what is the best solution for the cord?
Sparky: Replacement is often the best solution.

#7 Sandy: Do you have suggestions for cord or cable organization? Are there any methods that can cause harm or danger to the wires?
Sparky: There are many varieties of cord organization systems available so it would be important to refer to the manufacturers’ recommendations for the product when selecting one.  Avoid any systems that would require putting cords against walls or furniture or running them under carpets or across doorways.

#8 Sandy:  What are the dangers of using inside extension cords outside or vice versa?
Sparky: Indoor extension cords should not be used outside because they were not intended to be exposed to elements typically found there.

In general, it is a good idea to call a licensed electrician if you experience any of the following:

·         recurring problems with blowing fuses or tripping circuit breakers

·         a tingling feeling when you touch an electrical appliance

·         discolored or warm wall outlets or switches

·         a burning smell or rubbery odor coming from an appliance

·         flickering lights

·         sparks from an outlet

·         cracked or broken outlets

#9 Sandy:  What are your tips for a good home safety plan for fire evacuation?
Sparky: Be sure to have working smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside every sleeping room and outside of each sleeping area.  Draw a home escape plan and discuss it with everyone in your household.  Practice the plan during the day and at night with everyone in your home at least twice a year. It is important to know at least two ways out of every room.   (More information on basic escape planning and a downloadable grid are available at www.nfpa.org/escapeplan

#10 Sandy:  What are some other tips you’d like to share when it comes to spring cleaning and fire safety?
Sparky: Key fire safety tips: Key Fire Safety Tips – From “A Reporters Guide to Fire and the NFPA

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Kitchen Storage

April 14, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, How To Organize, Kitchen

Five Kitchen Organizing Tips

Part of having a kitchen that functions well for you is having it planned out properly.  I wanted to give you a few of my tips for planning out your kitchen so that it flows well.  You can have each cupboard organized, but if you have your dishes in with your food and your oven mitts way across the kitchen from your oven… then it isn’t going to function and flow smoothly.

1) Plan Your Space – Have Kitchen Zones

kitchen

Be sure to keep zones in mind when planning where things belong in your kitchen.

Cooking/Oven zone – Think hot food on the stove & what you’ll need.

oven mitts
1) Have your oven mitts within reach of the oven.
2) Have pots and pans by the oven
3) Keep spices near by
4) Stove utensils such as spatulas, tongs, large stirring spoons etc.

spatulas

Dishes Zone – Think setting the table and unloading the dishwasher

1) Have your dishes between your dishwasher and table if possible.
2) Have your silverware near your dishes
3) Keep your glasses in this same area

kitchen

Baking/Meal Preparation Area  – Think making dinner and baking a cake

1) Have your flour, sugar, baking soda in this area
2) Have your mixer, measuring cups, mixing bowls near each other
3) It should be near the pantry and refrigerator if possible.

Peter Walsh describes in his book, It’s All Too Much, the kitchen “magic triangle” as the area formed by the sink, oven and refrigerator. He calls this area “sacred ground where the focus is food prep, serving and clean up takes place.  (I’m cursed lucky enough to have a galley kitchen – 2 long rows)

kitchen triangleHe also discusses zones, but he divides them into four zones: Preparation area, cooking center, eating area and clean up area.  Maybe that is easier for you to think in those terms.

2) Keep What You Use

Don’t keep everything!  You may get plastic cups from every restaurant you go to, but how many can you use? Is the cupboard over flowing?

Sort  into Piles

Go through any cupboard in your kitchen. Take everything out. Sort it.  If you have not used that item in the last 1-2 months put it in one pile. Everything in the “used frequently” pile goes back in for sure.

Now go through that pile of items you have not used in the last 2-3 months.  Go through it again. If you have not used that item in the last year then it sure go for sure. (If it is something like the electric knife that your husband wants at Thanksgiving – put it in the Thanksgiving bin that is in storage. Same with the pumpkin carving tools or Christmas only item.)
Things that you have used in the last year, but not often you need to evaluate.

3) Keep Like with Like

Keep items together that go together.  Baking items in the same cabinet. Dishes together etc.

If you don’t use it in the kitchen – take it out of the kitchen!  The kids baseballs  don’t go in the kitchen.

4) Use Your Space Wisely

cabinet organizing

Make good use of your space.  Use the cabinet doors & walls – I showed you how easy it can be with the command hooks. No excuses that you are renting or you have melamine and you can’t screw into it.

You can use wire racks to greatly improve the space.  Look at the space in your cabinet.  How much room is above that bottom layer on the shelf.  Is there enough room for a 2nd layer?  If so… use it!

Think under the cabinets, back of the door, wall space (shelves)   Be creative

5) Have routine food checks and clean outs

Mark on your calendar at least every 6 months to clean and reorganize your pantry and refrigerator/freezer.

expired food

Check for out dated food items.  Make sure things like flour and sugar, boxes of pancake mix, instant potatoes and Bisquick mix are in sealed containers and if not, be sure there are no bugs.

If you have any problems with mice (it’s not unusual especially if you live in rural areas…. mice want to get warm in the winter too. lol)then be sure that you always keep your food in sealed mouse proof containers.  Check frequently your cabinets and silverware drawers for any signs of mice (their poo!) and if you see signs of them… work on getting rid of the mice, but be sure to wash out all those items and sanitize the drawer before you put anything back in.

If it is a big problem with mice, then I would suggest that you even keep your silverware and dishes in plastic storage containers in the cabinets.

Our farm that is about 45 minutes from our house has an older house and we do get mice off and on different times of the year.  So I have to keep a close eye on dishes etc.

farm house

Do you have your kitchen divided into “zones”?  Does it flow easily from preparing a meal to clean up?

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Food Storage Containers

April 13, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, How To Organize, Kitchen

Organize Those plastic food containers!

Having to always nest the bowls inside each other to make room…  it works but it is hard to get everyone to put those food storage containers  back where they have to go.  I mean really… actually lean down and pick up a couple bowls to put the larger one underneath? You jest! lol

This is what my “used to be organized” plastic storage containers cabinet looks like now.

Before

food storage cabinet

The lids are the killers too.. aren’t they?  Trying to find a lid to fit that food storage container.

So let’s get started.

Step 1: (You know it don’t you)  Clean Them All Out of the Cabinet

cabinet

Clean the cabinet now and if you have contact paper to put down, this is a great time to do it.

Step 2: Sort

Go through and match up all your bowls and lids.  Actually try the lids on the bowls because sometimes they warp and don’t work anymore. But what do we usually do when we are looking for a lid? We grab it…. try it… it doesn’t work. Do we toss it then? Nope, we throw it back in (as if it will at some point change and actually start working later?)

tupperware

If there is something you don’t use because you don’t like it – then get rid of it! Why are you keeping it if you don’t use it and you don’t like it?  Because it was an impulse buy and you think you might use it? Give it to someone who will use it. You will gain the empty space!

I will bet you that you will end up having odd and end lids and bowls.  Here is what I ended up getting rid out of my own food storage cabinet.  I’m also getting rid of the bowl because I’ve been using it to store lids, not as a food storage bowl.

mismatched lids

Step 3: Put your organizing tools in place.

You may have to just play around and see how things will work.  I had a lid organizer and also grabbed a couple other wire organizers I had to see if they would work or not. Of course this doesn’t see like I would be able to use it does it?  It is meant to hang underneath another wire shelf. It won’t hang under a wooden one. But wait…. !

wire organizer

What about using it this way…

wire rack

I had this lid organizer from Tupperware that I had never put on a door. I used it, as it also can be free standing – but it was kind of bulky. I used the hooks and it was finally up!

lid organizer

I also had some more of the wire racks that I bought in the bundles at Old Time Pottery. I got out my handy dandy new best friends the Command Hooks to help.  I was winging this folks!  It can be a trial and error kind of thing.
I put one of them up and realized that the lids were falling through the wire racks. So… I had to figure out something to create a base.  I had it!

duct tape

A little creativity!  I created a base so that the lids wouldn’t fall through.

wire rack

But after I got it up I realized that there was another issue.  The lids could still fall back behind the rack. See that space?  So… had to figure out something else.

wire rack

I needed to make a back shelf too. So…more duct tape!

wire shelfIt is a little hard to see but I pulled a piece up higher in the back. It worked!

I did this to the three wire racks I was going to hang (although I did run out of duct tape for the last bottom rack, but that was ok.)

Step 4: Load your plastic food storage containers back into the cabinet.

I decided to try and match up the lids and containers since I had more room (with the hanging racks). I didn’t do them all this way, but most all of the smaller ones I did.  I love it. It will be so easy to just grab a container now and not have to dig for the lid.

food storage container organization On the left door I loaded the lids of the containers that I didn’t have matched up and put them into the lid organizer from Tupperware.

lid and food storage organization Then on the inside wall I had one more wire rack available, so I put it up too.  I actually first put it on the left side and before I did, I held it in place and closed the door and it closed. But loaded, it did not. So I took it down (easy enough with those command hooks) and moved it to the other side. I had to put it in a specific spot in order to close… but it worked out fine.

**  Be sure to check that everything will close when you are adding any kind of hanging racks in your cabinets!

food storage container organization This is the one I ran out of duct tape for.  I do have lime green and hot pink duct tape… but I thought that might look a bit strange. lol

Here is the rack in the back.  With these lids I grouped them together and placed them underneath for easy grab-ability! The things on the bottom I don’t use as often.

food storage organization

I’m amazed at how much extra room I have!

Here is the top shelf. I put the matching lids underneath. Then I had a couple odd ball containers that I nested inside the others and I did put the lids on those.

food storage containers

I placed half of the bowls on the left.  The strainer and the two larger bowls. I’m hoping breaking them up will help in being able to put them back away easier.

plastic bowls

In the back I put the plastic drink containers. I have one more glass one in the refrigerator, so I made sure to leave space for that. The larger plastic lids for the bowls I had to place on this side. When I put the underneath the larger bowls, it lifted them up too much and it hit the door organizer.

plastic bowls

I love just being able to grab a quick little container!

food storage containers

Here is half of the cabinet.

food storage cabinetSo are you ready to see the whole thing?

Let’s review!

Before!

messy food storage cabinet

After

organized food storage cabinet

OMG… I am so excited!  Just adding those racks and matching up the lids (and getting rid of a few) it will be SO much easier to find things in here!

This was a very inexpensive fix. (most of mine are).  I got the command hooks which I think I paid $6.50 for a pack of 9 of them. (I used 11 in here). I had the back wire rack, but they are not expensive (under $6 I would guess)  The lid organizer I don’t remember, it is from Tupperware and I had it from before, but I’m sure there are others similar to it. The other 3 wire racks were in a 3 pack that came from Old Time Pottery. They were $9.99 for the 3 pack. I bought 2 packs when I bought them. I used 2 of the different styles in here, and the 3rd that came with the pack was the one that you could put taller things in like I used under the sink for the spray bottles. The colored duct tape was under $5. But you could modify any of these, and I’m sure find them for less.

Hope you like it! I know I’m excited. lol

Now… I want to see YOUR plastic food storage cabinets!! The good, the bad and the ugly!

I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until April 16, 2011. My link party is always open to any of your organizing projects, it doesn’t have to be kitchen!

Organizing Mission Monday

I Love Your Comments!

I am linking this blog post up to these lovely blogs!

A bowl full of lemons – One Project at a Time
Handy Man, Crafty Woman – Wicked Awesome Wednesday
Organize and Decorate Everything - We’re Organized Wednesday
Blue Cricket Design – Show and Tell Wednesday
The Thrifty Home – Penny Pinching Party
I’m an Organizing Junkie – 52 Weeks


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Pots and Pans

April 12, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, How To Organize, Kitchen

Organize Your Kitchen Cabinet

Kitchen cupboard organizing can be tricky.  Usually we find ourselves with too many pots and pans and not enough storage for them.   There are many solutions.  If you have the space and nice enough looking pans you can get a pot hanger and hang them for some kitchen decor.

I’ll show you what I did to reorganize my pots and pans.

Before

pots and pans before

I use the pan protectors inbetween my pans to try and protect them. I have my George Foreman Grill and crock pot in the back.

lids to pans

I wanted to find a solution for storing our large pancake griddle.  Right now I am keeping it in the bottom drawer of the washing machine! I know.. crazy huh?

Step 1:  Clear everything out and clean the shelves

cleaning cabinets

Step 2: Sort

What do you need?  Look at that item and ask yourself:

1) Have you used it in the last year?  Do you like it?
2) Is the surface of the pan intact (teflon shouldn’t be scratched or peeling)
3) Do all the lids fit pans? Do you have any old lids or damaged lids you don’t use, but have kept?

If there are pots and pans that are in good shape, but you don’t use them or like them – donate them. Anything else may be able to be recycled.

Step 3: Put in organizing items if you have them.

I had 2 lid organizers that mounted to the inside cabinets from my old house.  I never used them because I thought we were moving and didn’t want to lose them.
I also had a white white wire rack that I had used at some point. I got those 3 things and my handy dandy 3M Command Strips (so love these now!) and went to work.

I used the Command Hooks to mount the lid organizers to the inside of each door.

lid organizer

The other side

lid organizer

I did find that some of the lids did not work well in this.  The two larger lids for my orange pots and pans did not both fit. They kept falling forward.  I was able to use one of the lids. The other one I put on the pan it went with.

After

organized pots and pans

Here is the final product!  See the wire rack I put in the back?  I was able to put the smaller pans on that shelf.

I put all my Rachel Ray pans on the left. They are the most used and pans of choice.  Notice I tried to turn the handles so they would be easy to get out of the cupboard.  I also tried to do minimal nesting of the pans.

organized pots and pans

I also had the red pan that I reviewed and really love, but it was a single and we also use it frequently. So I put up another hook and hung it on the wall.

organized pots and pans

Be careful if you are putting something on the wall or the door of your cabinets.  Be sure that you can close them easily when they are on there.

I put the lids on my two dutch ovens and put them on the upper shelf

pots and pans

I still had room for my crock pot on the top shelf and my George Foreman on the bottom.

pots and pans

Now that I have all those lids out of the bottom drawer of the stove… what do you think I did with that?

pancake griddleYep! It fit great.  It will be so much nicer than using the washing machine drawer. lol
Ok…. time for you to tackle your pots and pans!!  I want to see your before and after pictures!

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A bowl full of lemons – One Project at a Time
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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 17

April 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Organizing & DYI Monday Link Party

Still Working in The Kitchen This Week

organizing mission monday

I had thought I might have the kitchen completed, but I still have more to go over with you this week.  I am going to work on that dreaded plastic storage container cupboard, pots & pans, and drawer organizing.  I am going to extend the linky that we have been using for the last 2 weeks for one more week.

Check Out My Featured Bloggers This Week

DaNita from Delightful Order reorganized & moved her Medicine Cabinet

This time she has reorganized her medicine cabinet and moved it. Why? Because she read a post on Jen’s blog, iHeart Organizing from a guest blogger who was a pharmacist. The Pharmacist, Melissa stated that Medicine Cabinets are NOT for Medicine. Why? Because of the heat and humidity in our bathrooms. They also should not be kept above the stove or refrigerators because of the heat.  So check out and see where DaNita stored her medications.

delightful order

I love all her cute labels! She has links that you can make her printables too.

delightful order

DaNita from Delightful Order Pantry!

DaNita is getting double kudos this week! I really wanted to show you her medicine cabinet because I just did that 4 part series on the medicine cabinets, but you HAVE to see this pantry! OMG! It looks like you walked into a model home on the Parade of Homes or something. How I WISH this would work with my family!

delightful order pantry

Isn’t that amazing? I also love this. I was doing this behind my pantry door also before their new lunch boxes got too fat to put back there.

delightful order lunch boxes

If she isn’t a Tupperwear dealer herself, I bet her Tupperwear lady LOVES her!!

delightful order tupperwear

She also has those great looking baskets that she has things stored in.

delightful order pantry Now, you have to go and see the rest of what she did in her pantry. Look at her pantry door too! So cute!!

Becky from Organizing Made Fun reorganized a set of drawers she has in her kitchen.

Notice the label on the edge of the drawer

organizing made fun

Love this battery organizer drawer. Looks great doesn’t it?

organizing made fun

Then if you have any chalkboards around, you have to have chalk right? I love this idea. So simple, but looks cute and easy to do.

organizing made fun

There are more drawers that she organized, be sure to check them out on her blog, Organizing Made Fun.


Be sure to stop by both of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love” and mention you saw them here!

For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!

Organizing Mission Monday

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If this code isn’t working, you can pick it up off my sidebar. (I’m having trouble with these codes on my actual posts.. sorry)

Link up to my Link Party

Link up any organizing or cleaning post to my link party!!

But this week I encourage you to start working on your kitchens! I’ll be working on some fun labeling and organization of kitchen cupboards this week.

Organizing Mission Monday

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(You can also pick up this button off my sidebar, if this one isn’t working right for you…)

Rules

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog

2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)

3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it

4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning

5) No sales pitches or web sites.

6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.

8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

Be sure to check out my list of link parties

If you have a link party.. please link it up! Underneath the daily buttons there is a list of text links I have compiled too! (Many more there!)

If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.

This will be open until Saturday night April 16, 2011 This link party has been continued from the last two weeks.

I LOVE your comments!!

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3M Command Hooks

April 8, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, DIY, How To Organize, Kitchen

More Uses in Your Pantry

Once I got the Command Hooks from 3M out and used them for storing under the sink items, I started thinking of other areas I could use them.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not so good with a drill.  I will just hammer in a nail anywhere. I’ll look for a stud… but if it isn’t where I want the item to go…. so be it. (no stud)

These little hooks give me some freedom (and no…this is not a review, I didn’t get these from 3M and no one is asking me to write this….)  to hang away!

Here is another view of my pantry… and I have added a couple of things.  See the wire rack with the vegetable sprays and salad dressings?

That is new…. I didn’t have a drill….. but I did have 3M Command Hooks. (I feel like they are a super hero or something!… there is an idea for you 3M…. the Command Hook super hero….comes to the rescue! – I want credit for that one!)
wire rack
The wire rack I got at Old Time Pottery. (Watch for a gift card give away coming from them soon too on my site!!  yippee!!)  It came as a set of 3 different little wire racks like this.
Here is how I hung it.
command hook

Then below I hung the grill tools on them too.
command hooks
command hooks

Previously I had the grill tools on thumbtacks and they would fall out frequently.

command hooks

It has been working great! Love it.

I also used one of them to hang my fly swatters. We live not real far from an egg farm and certain times of the year the flies can get really bad.  (They haven’t been as bad the last couple years as when I first moved here 5 years ago..oh my was that bad!)

fly swatter

This hangs right behind my trash can. So people always know where it is.

command hook I’d love for you to share any uses you can think of or have used some kind of hooks for. It doesn’t have to be the Command hooks… I just think hooks can be so useful!

I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until April 9, 2011, but don’t worry, if you finish your kitchen, pantry or label projects after that… my link party is always open to any of your organizing projects!

Organizing Mission Monday

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Organizing Under the Kitchen Sink

April 4, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, How To Organize, Kitchen

Do You Keep Everything Including Part Of The Kitchen Sink Under Your Sink?

It can be difficult to organize underneath your kitchen sink because you have to deal with the plumbing and disposal underneath it.

Under The Sink Before:

under the sink

My previous organizing used some odds and ends baskets.  I have an old ice container on the far left.   There are several cleaning gloves, cleaners, fire extinguisher, and other odds and ends on this side.
under the sink

On the other side I have the plastic container that is supposed to be hung that holds plastic bags.  The wire basket used to hang on the door of another house under the kitchen sink.

under the sink

Step 1: Clear everything out from under the sink

I have officially decided I do not like the shelf liners that are not contact paper.  I decided to try them for the first time…because that is mainly what I find now and “everyone else is doing it”.  lol  I have this style and also that bumpy kind of padded open holed shelf liner (do you know what I mean?)  It pulls up, I’m constantly trying to smooth it down. Obviously here, you can see how well it looks.  Ugh!  This is going in the trash.

under the sink

Step 2: Clean the empty cabinet

Clean out your cabinet while you have it empty.  I would have liked to have put down contact paper, but I didn’t have any and did not have plans or time to get it today. What is frustrating is that I spent a lot of money on all the shelf liner I bought just a few months ago when I got my new kitchen.

under the sink

Today I will leave it plain, without any liner.

Step 3: Sort through your items and get rid of things you don’t use, that are old or expired or need to go else where.

I had two Soft Scrubs and two powdered cleaners. I kept one of each here, and moved the others to one of the bathroom cabinets.  I also had a couple odds and ends that I didn’t use anymore that I disposed of.

Step 4: Replace the items that you are going to keep, things you will use.

I ended up going back to Old Time Pottery and buying a couple more of the plastic baskets for my refrigerator. The red ones fit, but they were just big enough that if you didn’t make sure they were pushed all the way back, then the refrigerator door wouldn’t shut.  I was just a little concerned about the kids remembering to watch for that, and didn’t think it was worth taking the chance of having spoiled food.  So… I had 2 of the large red baskets to play with.

under sink basket

The other red plastic basket did not fit on the other side of the cabinet.  It wasn’t too tall to fit under the disposal, but with all the tubing under there, it did not work. I cleaned out the other little red basket that I had been using and used it for the right side.

under the sink

Step 5: Utilize as much space as you are able.

I could stack baskets or get some kind of wire shelves to make a 2nd level, but I don’t happen to need that kind of space. I do however, have several things that I planned to hang on the doors.

My problem now is double fold:

1) My husband isn’t home to hang these items for me
2) When I look at the doors of the cabinets, the items I wanted to hang aren’t going to fit properly. There is a ridge in the inside of the door and the items I wanted to hang aren’t wide enough. ugh!

So…. I needed to think of something else because I was determined to get this completed today!
Here is what I figured out and I am thrilled with it!!

Enter….. Command hooks by 3M (this is not a review for them by the way)

command hooks by 3M
I had a few packs of different sizes of hooks.  I used these sticky hooks and hung this wire rack I got at Old Time Pottery.

sink organizing

It worked perfect for the cleaners I use most often in the kitchen.

under sink organizing

Be sure that you can close the door with the placement of anything on the door.

door of cabinet under sink

I’m really excited that I was able to get this done!  If this doesn’t hold, I’ll let you know that you might need stronger hooks.

right side of cabinet

Now I’m excited to try the other door.

I want to see if these hooks will work to hold up this bag holder.

bag holder

I was able to mount the bag holder, now to try the wire basket.

door basket
That worked also. I put cleaning tools in it. If you knew how excited I was!!

cabinet door organizing

I have one more thing I have to figure out a solution for. I  have 2 pair of rubber gloves. I tried just laying them in the basket on the door (no, too bulky). I tried them in the big red plastic basket, but again they just looked junky.

So….. I decided to use the hook solution again. But how I got them to stay up was my new dilemma.  But….I came up with an idea that I think will work well for the long run.

Check this out!  I used a binder clip to hold the pair of gloves together and then hung that from one of the Command hooks.

command hook by 3M

So this is what I ended up with.

hanging rubber gloves

I used the inside of the cabinet to hang the gloves.

rubber gloves

Here is what it looks like:

under the sink organizing

Here is the whole cabinet

After Organizing

organized under sink

Looks a little better doesn’t it?  I love that I was able to use those Command hooks and put up the things I wanted on the inside of my cabinet doors.
Now I want to see underneath Your Kitchen sinks!
I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until April 9, 2011 to link to, so you have time to work on your pantry and refrigerator

Organizing Mission Monday

I LOVE your comments

I’m linking up to these blog parties

A Bowl Full of Lemons -  One Project at a Time
House of Grace – Twice Owned Tuesday
Thrifty Decor Chick – Before and After Party
Tip Junkie - Tip Me Tuesday
Handy Man, Crafty Woman – Wicked Awesome Wednesday
I’m an Organizing Junkie – 52 Weeks

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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 16

Organizing In The Kitchen This Week

That will still be my focus this week.  Last week I showed you pantry organizing and refrigerator and freezer organizing.  If you haven’t yet organized those, please try to get to those this week.  You will think about it every time you open your refrigerator or freezer this week I’m sure of it! Especially after that trip to the grocery! lol

I’m going to be showing you a few organizing products this week that are low cost and make good solutions for organizing some things in your cupboards.

See My Featured Bloggers For This Week!

Marcie from Timber and Lace used baskets with chalk board labels for her pantry.

Timber and Lace pantry

I love the look of this!  Wouldn’t this be a wonderful pantry to have? omg… the shelves, the cubbies on the bottom, the counter top!
Marci, does not separate all her products out into separate containers either (like me). She sounds very much like me with the realistic part of having that awesome look. So the inside of her baskets look like this.

timber and lace pantry basketYou can see the rest of her post on her pantry organization here.

Stephanie from Create Order organized her refrigerator.

create order organized refrigerator

She also used baskets in her refrigerator to organize. But she utilized baskets for those skinny shelf spaces and they work perfect for that.

create order refrigerator basketGo look at the rest of her post called I knew It Was Only A Matter Of Time
Be sure to stop by both of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love” and mention you saw them here!

For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!

Organizing Mission Monday

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If this code isn’t working, you can pick it up off my sidebar. (I’m having trouble with these codes on my actual posts.. sorry)

Link up to my Link Party

Link up any organizing or cleaning post to my link party!!

But this week I encourage you to start working on your kitchens!  I’ll be working on some fun labeling and organization of kitchen cupboards this week.

Organizing Mission Monday

<center><a href=”http://www.organizewithsandy.com/blog” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://www.organizewithsandy.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/mission-monday-1.jpg “/></a></center><br/>

(You can also pick up this button off my sidebar, if this one isn’t working right for you…)

Rules

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog

2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)

3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it

4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning

5) No sales pitches or web sites.

6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.

8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

Be sure to check out my list of link parties

If you have a link party.. please link it up! Underneath the daily buttons there is a list of text links I have compiled too! (Many more there!)

If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.

This will be open until Saturday night April 9, 2011  This link party is continued from last week.

I LOVE your comments!!

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The Perfect Picnic

Includes…No ants, no flies, no mosquitoes and  a Man you love

The weather changed out outdoor picnic plans (as it often can) to an indoor enchanted evening

perfect picnic

With spring coming up…. and the flowers starting to bloom….we want to get outside and enjoy the nice crisp warm weather…. by the water….. with your man….

But….. it was doing this instead.

snow

So… you move your perfect picnic inside! Grab some candles…. a bottle of wine..

picnic basket

Add your wine glasses and silverware

picnic basket

Pick up the food you know your man loves.  To me… making a perfect picnic is keeping it simple, easy and low cost (this meal cost $18.50. The wine I already had at home) and I love that!  Picking out his favorites,  let’s him know that I was thinking specifically of him.

picnic basket

Make sure you have a quilt to put down for your picnic.

Better homes & Garden picnic Quilt

Spread this monster queen size quilt out on the floor

picnic quilt

And begin to enjoy your evening

perfect picnic

Start with the cheese and crackers

cheese and crackers

Your glass of wine together

wine and candles

Enjoy your meal with the chicken, cole slaw and ham salad that were easy and taste great.  I found these Reese Cup Cupcakes for dessert …. he loves Reese Cups (and so do I)

cup cakes
Oh yum
cupcake

This was my perfect picnic…. with my perfect man

I don’t know if a picnic could get any more perfect than this!

picnic

Thank you Better Homes & Garden for the Perfect Picnic!

I love your comments!

I was supplied with the picnic basket, plates, plastic wine glasses, and Better Homes & Garden Quilt along with being compensated for the meal.

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