See what I did there? For anyone that reads this blog, it’s apparent that I don’t do things normally. Well, normal for the average home owner. I pick up tips and ideas from businesses and incorporate them into our home. My Rubbermaid kitchen storage is straight out of the restaurant kitchen. My husband is a chef, and he uses the workhorses in the kitchen at work and swears by them!
We use three different types at our house; round, square, and rectangular. All are heavy duty, and all keep our food so fresh! The square containers are my favorites, and I use them for flours (of which we have five different types), baking powder, corn meal, coffee, etc. Not only does it eliminate messy, bulky bags, but keeps the critters away. Unfortunately in Florida, weevils are a big issue. Also, they have convenient measurements on the sides, so I can pull out how much I need accordingly, with minimal fuss.
The round containers I use for pastas. Like flours, we have a lot of pasta in the house. I’m Italian, so it’s what I do best and because of these fantastic containers, I buy a lot of pasta! Plus, I’ve used them for cereals, granola, flax seed and things like that, and they keep everything from going stale. I’m also keeping all of the Halloween candy that was left over in a spare. Shhhh, don’t tell anyone.
The last one that I use is rectangular ones, and these are really my all-purpose containers. I store marshmallows (in the bag, air removed), granola bars, energy bars, Pop-Tarts…any kind of boxed item that is packaged separately. I just empty the packages into the containers and voila! instant organization. I’m all about organization, if you haven’t read some of my other blogs. I highly recommend, especially for you organizational brothers and sisters of mine, to purchase some of these gems for your house as well!
If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again – I love art work that uses unusual mediums. Not just art work either, but repurposed items too. Give me a tin coffee can and the best I can do is nail it to some driftwood and call it a planter, so people who can turn flatware into a work of art have my vote. Check out the images below for some truly interesting artwork!
The big holidays are over, but other small ones are fast approaching, and this begs the question: How are you going to send home leftovers from that party and get your storage containers back? I hate sending leftovers home for just that reason, because those little containers are pricey!
Well, that’s an easy fix! Last year, I bought take-out containers. That way, I send home food so it doesn’t stay in my house and get tossed, and I don’t worry about having to go out and buy a whole new slew of plastic storage containers! And I really hate having to do that…
The beauty is, you can get whatever you want, for whatever budget you have. You can get foam food containers, in a one compartment, two compartments, or three compartments. You can get plastic deli containers or aluminum containers. Heck, you can even get foam trays and just use plastic wrap to seal it up.
Personally, I like to use the little Chinese restaurant containers for a funky touch, or you can get the paper food trays like they use at fairs and festivals. With Valentine’s Day and St Patrick’s Day coming up (my husband and his family are Irish, so we have huge St Paddy’s Day parties), I have to dig my containers out of storage for the occasion. That’s another plus! They last forever, unless of course you throw massive parties with 300+ people! Party on, and send home leftovers without fear!
People my age and older know of the original intended use of a mason jar, and that was for storing vegetables and fruits that had been preserved at home. Rural farmsteads and homes usually had vegetable gardens and fruit trees, and housewives canned or “put up” their own vegetables, fruits, jams, jellies, and other food stuffs for winter time and lean times. Mason jars were, and still are, the storage container of choice for this.
Now, we drink from them, we turn them into snow globes, we use them to store toiletries…there are a thousand and one uses for mason jars and a quick search of Pinterest will give you pages of ideas for crafting with them. Google “mason jar uses” and you get MORE pages upon pages of ideas (including those on Pinterest) for everything from terrariums (I may do one of those) to science projects! Below are the top five ideas that I found online that have to do with mason jars. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did finding them!
1) A meal in a jar. How simple, how easy, how…crafty! When I saw this blog, it made me want to run right out and try this! Even though I’m one of those weird people who doesn’t like their food to touch. In the interest of experimenting, I’m willing to give it a go!
2) I have a brown thumb. Really. I can grow herbs, and I can grow veggies, but anything remotely resembling a house plant or flower, and I will kill it. Purely unintentional, of course, but if I try it more than once, does that constitute premeditated plant murder? Anyway, I want to try this terrarium. It looks cool and death-proof.
3) Okay, so I used to decorate in country shabby-chic. My house was all Americana accents and garage-store finds that I fixed up, so something like these glasses that I found on this blog would have fit right in on nights around the fire pit.
4) These mason jar pincushions appeal to my love of organizing! And I love off-beat ways of storage. I have a sewing kit, but I may just add something like this to my collection, so that I can have a small sewing kit where I need it most. Of course, leave it up to crafting maven Martha Stewart to come up with something so functional and yet fun!
5) Last but not least, another organizing wunderfind from Martha. Although I couldn’t find it on her site, I found a blogger that posted about it. Its pretty self-explanatory, and if you have any Martha Stewart Whole Livings around from 2009, its in one of those issues. Hey, I tried to find it. She may be the crafting maven, but she’s not good at archiving online.
Well, maybe not for our northern friends, but down here in Florida its perfect camping weather! Camping supplies are being unearthed from the garage, tents set up in back yards to be aired out, and grills are being scraped clean, ready for campsite burgers and steaks. Bring on the s’mores, it’s time to camp!
When I was younger, I camped a lot. As long as I had my trusty first-aid kit, I was comfortable. I loved waking up in the morning to the sounds of the woods around me, snuggled into the warmth of my air mattress. Yes, I said air mattress. I love to camp, but I need the comforts of home! That meant air mattresses, fluffy pillows from home, and my comforter as opposed to a sleeping bag.
We also had a camp kitchen, a portable countertop that had three levels and lantern hooks. It held my grill, my drip coffee maker (can’t go camping without that), and had hooks so I could hang my skillet and utensils, along with a paper towel hook. One level of the counter top held my paper plates and cups, and the other level held my plastic tote with our dry goods.
We also brought with us a heavy duty ice chest (read: massive) that would hold all of our cold stuffs and keep the ice for about two days before we had to refill it. Our tent was huge, and slept up to 12 people, although we were only two. I need room to move around and not feel cramped. And have clearly designated dressing areas and sleeping areas. We don’t camp as much anymore, and I miss it. Maybe that’s something to bring up as an alternative for summer vacation! What do you do for camping fun?
Thanksgiving is a week away, and in schools all across the country, paper plates are being used to make turkey-related crafts. I think plastic plates would be a better choice. I know, paper is better for the environment, but plastic will keep in an attic trunk a lot better than a paper memento. Plus, if some huge plate catastrophe strikes your home, and your car breaks down and you can’t get to the store, you can always clean up a plastic plate and reuse it! I know, I’m reaching.
With plastic plates, you know that the turkey, stuffing, casseroles, cranberry sauce, etc won’t dump into your lap, and you really can hand wash plastic plates and use them again, preferably without a frame of dry spaghetti around the rim from your child’s craft at school.Also, they’re elegant and have style so they are more appropriate for a holiday dinner.
Plastic plates are also handy in a pinch for games and sports. A fairly heavy-duty plate can substitute for a frisbee, and if you use a dry-erase marker, you can use a plastic plate to play tic-tac-toe or hangman. They make great hats too, that you can staple ribbons and bows (or tape toilet paper to them) for baby showers and bridal showers. See? There are so many things you can use a plastic plate for!