When it comes to preparing my house for the influx of relatives and friends that are coming over to feast for the holidays, I am totally meticulous in my cleaning ritual. I clean things that during the rest of the year might not get the attention it deserves, like the top of cabinets and the cabinets under the sink.
It’s not that I think people will stand on a step stool to check how my dust bunnies are faring on top of the cabinets, and I don’t envision the kitchen sink cabinet being opened up long enough for anyone to notice the ring of dish-washing liquid that *may* be there from when the bottle tipped over, but you just never know.
I use a lot of Kimberly-Clark wipes during this time. LOTS. I would probably be shot by an activist group that monitors such things as amount of disposable paper-towel type things, but in my defense, it’s only twice a year that I do this. And I support all efforts to sustain the environment, just sayin’. But I love me some WypAll’s.
I also used Kimwipes on all my electronics and even everyone’s eyeglasses and sunglasses. They are especially made for delicate jobs like that, and I don’t want anything messing up my TV and computer screens! They are also great for smartphones and tablets. In my kitchen, I use the X80 foodservice towels. Nothing really beats the absorbency when it comes to drying dishes and utensils and getting them seriously dry. Good luck with your own holiday cleaning!
When you see the back to school displays in the stores, you know that summer is half way over. Or you realize that retailers are an overzealous lot. Stores are filled with big yellow displays full of pencils, pens, pads, protractors, small refrigerators and computers. Almost anything in a store can be considered a back-to-school supply, especially when you take college kids into account.
I love this time of the year! It’s so exciting and even if your student isn’t too thrilled with the thought of inking Shakespearean quotes into their composition notebooks, or pondering the Pythagorean Theorem in their Trapper Keepers, they still want you to buy them all the cool stuff for school.
When I was a kid, I couldn’t wait for school supply shopping. Back then, there weren’t a lot of displays to poke through, or eye-catching bins right as you walk in the door to trip over, but I still loved walking down the office supply aisle at Zayre (that’s an old name for you) or Kmart, being so careful to pick out the coolest pen (Papermate, blue) or pencil (Huskies), college-ruled paper, and the biggest, fanciest Trapper Keeper that was made. Even then, I had an obsession with keeping things organized.
Now, when I walk into a store with my 15 year old, I am absolutely astounded at what is available for kids to take to school. And frankly, I am smitten with the fact that schools send around to the retailers what they require for the kids to have on the first day. That’s such a brilliant idea. Granted, I usually have to take out a small loan on the house every July just to outfit him for school, between clothes, shoes, accessories and of course supplies, but I’m just as excited about it as he is!
Locker mirrors and organizers, book jackets in bright colors and patterns (I used brown paper bags from the grocery store…not fair), backpacks with shoulder pads…the list just goes on. I think this time however, I’m going to pick up some cool supplies for myself as well! Happy shopping!
Well, a day early anyway, but since I’m not here on Saturday’s and Sunday’s to write this wonderful blog, I figured its better early than late. And since this is my absolute favorite time of the year, I thought, Hey! What a great blog to write!
There is just something perfect about autumn. In September, the temperatures are just right (well…not here, but in other places), and you get that slight chill in the morning and a lovely breeze at night. Air conditioners get turned off (again, not here. You’d melt) and windows get opened. Humidity drops and mums and pansies crop up on porch planters, along with corn stalks and gourds. Leaves start turning into the scarlets, golds, and oranges that turn hillsides into gorgeous paintings of bright color.
The other thing I love about autumn is firepits. In October’s past, some of my best nights have been sitting around a fire with friends, light jackets and the heat of the fire offering protection from the brisk night air. Ghost stories around a firepit on Halloween night are just something that has to be experienced..especially if your firepit is bordered by a deep, dark, spooky forest. In October, ghosts hang from trees, jack-o-lanterns glare at you from front porches and stoops, and on one fun night, little goblins and ghuolies rush from house to house, looking for sweet treats.
November is a time for football and Thanksgiving! What other month do you get a pass to eat as much as you want, turn on the TV to watch a football game, and then fall asleep? Well, without recrimination, anyway. Leaves are burning in piles outside, putting the smell of burning wood in the air. The nights get even cooler, and most likely you will have to scrape frost off your car windows in the morning. Thanksgiving comes and you eat like a glutton. Then Black Friday comes and you waddle to the stores at 4 A.M., still full from your midnight snack, and shop like a glutton.
I tell ya, fall is just about the best season. Outdoor activities aren’t impeded by bugs and sweat, and inside activities consist of crafting and baking. What more could a person ask for? Not much more, I can tell you that! What are you doing to make this a great fall season?
Most of the country is starting to feel a crisp change in the air (except for where I live, but even I happened to notice a slight drop in the humidity the other night) and the body, if not the mind, can tell that autumn is on the way. Ah Fall, my favorite time of the year.
When I lived outside Florida, which was twice for a period of 5 years apiece, Fall was my absolute favorite time of the year. Cooler weather, clearer skies, less humidity, and craft fairs are everywhere! I love crafting, it’s a weakness of mine.
Now I’m back in Florida and although we are nowhere near Fall-like weather, I find that I am looking for crafts to do. Now is the time to start Halloween crafts, Thanksgiving crafts, and winter holiday crafts with your kids! Ornaments and masks and stick reindeer oh my!
Scrapbooking is my craft of choice, but I like others as well. I’m pretty good at making masks, and my wooden ornaments aren’t too shabby. My next endeavor (when I stop procrastinating) is going to be diorama’s; I think they are incredibly fascinating and can’t be too much different than the model cars I used to put together.
If you’re new to crafting, you can find easy kits to put together or paint, including paint-by-numbers or jewelry making. And don’t feel silly either- even my husband colors fuzzy posters. It’s just something goofy that we do to unwind and be together as a family outside of TV and video games. So? What kind of crafts do you enjoy?
Is your garage more of a storage unit than, well, a garage? Is it full of boxes and furniture instead of a car or two? Are your shelves bowing under the considerable weight of memories past? Do you ever wonder what’s buried in that dark corner under the canvas tarp? Do you WANT to know what’s under there?
If your garage is anything like mine, then no, you really don’t. I’ve talked on this blog about how organized I am (or have deluded myself into thinking I am), but my garage is scary with a capital S. The only part that makes any sense is my laundry area. Other than that, I could have a whole colony of gnomes living amongst the leaning boxes and humped piles of storage bags.
My big fall project is garage organization, and frankly I’m terrified of what I’m going to find. I’m trying to psych myself up to it by treating it as an archaeological dig and we’re looking for the Ark of the Covenant or a crystal skull, but I haven’t made progress with that. What I have made progress with is starting to purchase the tools we’ll need to get it organized and hopefully stay organized! After I talk myself into NOT saving everything.
I’ve taken the liberty of listing a few of the things that I’m picking up to get the garage in shape, so hopefully they’ll benefit you as well. Happy organizing!
Shelving – sturdy shelving, preferable with doors, is the first step in successful garage organization. It can take the weight, and instead of seeing paint cans strewn everywhere, you see nice, neat doors.
Organizers – Specifically wall mounted ones. They are perfect for hanging mops, brooms, rakes, etc. Most have latches AND hooks, so you can hang rope and extension cords as well.
Work spaces – We’re purchasing a mobile work station instead of building one. Its more convenient for us, as neither one of us plays with power tools to build things, and we can move it around the garage for more space.
Garbage Cans – Heavy duty and not prone to breaking. We bought two of the Rubbermaid Brute garbage cans and they contain all of our refuse until garbage pickup.
Storage – Bins and boxes. Perfect for everything from books and albums to nails and screws. You can’t go wrong with a hefty supply of both. Plus, you can use them up in your attic and turn that room into scary hoarding storage space.