23 January 2010

I Am the Watcher.

"Of two sisters one is always the watcher, one the dancer."

—Louise Glück

I discovered this lovely quote at The Sister Project. It made me think. What am I? The dancer or the watcher. I do love to dance. I have my carefree moments of really sucking life in.

But, my sister is the dancer. She always has been. Right now more than ever. With four beautiful little girls... how can you not dance everyday?

12 January 2010

A Make it Work - Modge-Podge Organized Home Office

I have been very conscious of waste. I use what I have, when I can. Functionality in a home office is priority. If it functions and I can slap a coat of paint on it to make it pretty, I use it.

My home office is a modge-podge of old family stuff (the cabinet storage), dumpster dives (the wood filing cabinet), and renovation scraps (the built in shelves). Even my desk is a combination of an old kitchen table and more contemporary ikea piece that didn't work with my style.

I found, in all the chaos of home renovations, that I didn't need as much as I though I needed in my office space. Thank goodness, because I also didn't have a huge furniture budget. You can read more about my home office here. One Essential Element of the Perfect Home Office

Get creative. Use what you have.

11 January 2010

Still Inspired to Eat More Veggies.

We enjoyed our vegetarian meals last week. For the most part the flavors were very good and the textures were not unpleasant.

A successful first for me last week, homemade pasta. It was surprisingly easy.

A new favorite, the Hearty Winter Veggie Burgers. I cannot wait to eat that burger again, the flavors were fabulous.

The fried wontons were just ok and it felt wasteful with all that oil going in the trash.

We had mushrooms I needed to use, so I never got around to the souffle. I made a mushroom pasta instead.

Not only am I still inspired for I am an Organizing Junkie - Menu Plan Monday, I am inspired to do a bit of kitchen re-organizing this week.

All of last weeks meals came from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food by Mark Bittman.

Many of this weeks come from the same cookbook. Chicken is also the menu this week. I need to start getting my seafood back too.

Chicken Noodle Soup
Pan Fried Chicken and cauliflower Mash
Asian Style Dumplings
Butternut Risotto
Bear Glazed Black Bean Burritos.

My weekly menu planning form.
(You can plan your meals with this form too. It is an acrobat editable file.)

06 January 2010

New Dad Toolkit - Perfect Baby Shower Gift for New Dad.

It has been years since I put one of these new dad toolkits together. It is the perfect co-ed baby shower gift for the new dad with a sense of humor. Dad shouldn't be left out of all the fun.

Both my sis and I are planning co-ed baby showers for dear old friends, so I tracked down all my old graphic files to put a couple more of these together.

You can get most everything you need at Target. You could also try the dollar store. The biggest expense is the The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenanceby Louis Borgenicht, md and Joe Borgenicht, dad. But IMHO, the book pulls the whole shower gift together. Not to mention, it's a great reference for new parents. Beautifully designed and written.

The shopping list.

  • 15 oz bedtime bath - johnsons

  • soft cloth baby wipes - target

  • 2oz hand sanitizer - target

  • baby owners manual
    louis borgenicht, md
    joe borgenicht, dad

  • safety goggles

  • masks - 3m

  • ear plugs

  • plastic tool box - stanely

  • optional - diapers, onesies, finger stuffed toys

The new dad toolkit labels are here.

Print the first page on a heavier stock, cut, hole punch and attach with a string.

Print the second page on an adhesive label sheet or regular paper and mount with super77 or preferred glue.

The labels are not fancy. Just simply designed to make dad laugh.

05 January 2010

Time to Take it Down.

We always have a bit of a disagreement in our house around December 30th. It starts with "honey, when are the decorations coming down?" It ends with "when the three kings come."

Well, Three Kings Day or the Epiphany, is celebrated on January 6th, twelve days after christmas. I can't really take the star off the top of the tree until then, right?

Besides, I have just begun to really enjoy them.

I plan on taking an inventory this year before I store the holiday decor away for the season. Along with the tips in my Declutter and Organize your Seasonal Décor article, you can download holiday storage labels and an inventory worksheet.

04 January 2010

Inspired to Plan Healthy Delicious Meals

Up until last week I wasn't really planning a weekly menu.
I have not been super inspired to cook in my kitchen, as my kitchen is less than inspiring. The blah of my kitchen totally reflected in my food. Boring. Dull. Same.

Everyone participating in I am an Organizing Junkie - Menu Plan Monday has inspired me. I know I need appreciate my current kitchen more—to eventually have the kitchen of my dreams. The only way to truly appreciate a kitchen is to keep it clean, uncluttered and put lots of love into healthy meals.

My focus will be 80% Vegetarian with local, seasonal ingredients as much a possible.
The majority of my recipes will come from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food by Mark Bittman.

This week I will be making -

Cold Sesame Noodles
Hearty Winter Veggie Burgers
Tofu Stuffed Wonton
Cheese Souffle
Eggplant Parm

There was a time when I would look at vegetarian recipes and...yuck.
But if the few meals I have already prepared from this cookbook are any indication of what is to come... I can't wait. The flavors are delicious.

My weekly menu planning form.
(You can plan your meals with this form too. It is an acrobat editable file.)
My monthly menu planning calendar.
(Not sure if I am ever going to be this proactive, but some of you may find this handy.)
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