Monday, October 24, 2011

...pumpkin carver by afternoon

CAUTION: Do not attempt without adult supervision!

Happy Beautiful Fall day everyone! I decided today was the day to carve my chunky pumpkin that's been living outside for a few weeks now. I figured it's close enough to the Big Day (Halloween). So I started with the first step to organizing...Clear the Space:

Then, skipping step two (Find the Function (cause it doesn't apply here)), step three involves: Get organized. I know, duh, but seriously it's just that simple. Put everything out ahead of time so that it's easy to access everything and there's no delay in your project:

I cut open a paper bag and put it under the pumpkin to make for a quick cleanup.

**side note to explain the Vaseline. I always do research on the cheapest easiest way to preserve a pumpkin. I've found that the best way that works for us is Vaseline. I know others say bleach is the best, or the expensive "fresh pumpkin" juice you can buy is great. But I'm cheap and that little container was $.99 and the only time I use it is this time of year and we've had it for 3 years now. Awesome!

Here's my steps:

1. Wash that baby so it's good and clean. That makes an easier carving surface. Then you cut the top off:

2.  Make sure you make your "chimney" in the top so that it doesn't set on fire when you put the candle in. You'll wanna carve out the top. It'll look like this: 

3.  Gut the sucker completely. Set the seeds aside if you wanna cook 'em. I find it's easiest if you take the knife up the sides to cut the pumpkin seaweed (as I call it) off the pumpkin. It scoops out better. 

4.  Then draw whatever kind of face you want, or trace your favorite from a pumpkin design book. Use a knife to cut out the pieces. 

If you're having trouble cutting out the mouth, try cutting it in half like this:

5.  Then once you're all done, rub the whole thing with Vaseline, inside and out. I've found it helps the pump' keep for at least 8-9 days. Just in time for Halloween!! Plop a candle in the middle and TA-DA!

It's Steve!!! Why do I name my pumpkin? I dunno. I've done it every year. Last year was Earl. Isn't Steve so cute and shiny!? I just love him. And now he lives on our porch:

He's not perfect, but that wasn't what I was going for. So it works out well. Have you carved yours yet? Is it as crazy detailed as mine? (I kid, I kid) What about costumes? Anyone got a crazy cool idea for your Halloween apparel? Lemme know! Cause I love this time of year!

**I am available for hire in the northern Indianapolis area. Please feel free to email me at organizerbyday(@)gmail(dot)com for further information. I look forward to organizing with you!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

...organized decorator as well!

So even though we've been in our house over a year, I have yet to decorate about our beautiful cabinets in the kitchen. They're a pretty cherry wood and they're pretty much the reason I fell in LOVE with our house. I walked into the kitchen and BAM there they were in all their prettiness. Like I think I've mentioned before, I'm a bit of a procrastinator. I tend to put things off for as long as possible. Things like...decorating the top of my cabinets. Here's what they've looked like since we moved in.

Bare. Boring. Blah

Nothing. Nada. Not a thing up there. What's wrong with me? I like pretty things. I like decorations. I like buying things. But for some reason I had let this area go by the wayside. Shame on me!

Last weekend we went to HTB's (hubby-to-bes) cousin's (you still with me) fundraiser for her non-for-profit   organization "Reins to Recovery". She helps kids who need help with all kinds of things. The whole event is to help raise money to keep her going for at least another year. She's such an amazing person and the organization does wonderful things. At the fundraiser they have a silent auction.

Apparently HTB really gets in to auctions because we gotta lotta stuff. I wasn't sure what to do with the slushie maker and the basket that says "Happy Easter" on it. The rest of what we bought was cute decorative things. Only problem was, I didn't have anywhere to put it all.

Light bulb! I decided this was a sign to finally FINALLY decorate the top of the cabinets. It was easy to start cause rule #1: Clear the space, was already done.
SO at the auction we got artwork and baskets.

(You can see the books I used to prop things up in that pic. Shhh!! Don't tell anyone.)

Candles and more artwork...

AND even more baskets...

I did find a good purpose for the Easter basket...for now...

Awesome!  The little pumpkins are so goshdarn cute too. I used a great rule-of-thumb I learned from my sister at thrifty decor chick to always go up and down with the decorations. You'll see each item is shorter then taller then shorter then taller. It makes all the random items look really good together and creates a nice flow. 

This isn't what will always be up there, but it's good for now. And once fall is over, I'll take the cute patoot pumpkins down and replace them with Christmas stuff!!! I love Christmas even more than fall...and have twice the decorations too! So what do you do on top of your cabinets? Any fun fall ideas? Show me so I can get that spot looking even better!

**I am available for hire in the northern Indianapolis area. Please feel free to email me at organizerbyday(@)gmail(dot)com for further information. I look forward to organizing with you!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

...Oh So OCD at night

OCD in a good way, that is. That is, if there is a good way. There is right?

So the big argument around our house is "What's for dinner?"
Half my morning is spent texting my HTB (Hubby To Be) back and forth ideas for dinner. He never EVER wants to pick what we are having and sometimes I just get sick of having to decide. Anyone else the same way? I wanted the arguing to stop so I came up with a solution.

My solution: Plan a week ahead. (enter OCD behavior now)

I've been doing this for a while now. I know tons of other people do too, and have tons of creative ways of how to make their meal boards. Mine?...well let's just say I've never claimed to be crafty and I think this board is from college!

Every week I start with my first rule of organizing...
Clear the space:

It may be plain jane to you but she works perfectly for me! Maybe when we have kids I'll make cute magnets that say different foods that help my kids learn how to read and make healthy eating choices blah blah blah. For now though, I know how to read and I think my little board is great.

I section her (when did the board become a her) off  for the week like so...

This follows my second rule of organizing by making her functional. You'll notice (hopefully you can notice with my lil camera phone picture) Friday and Saturday don't get a day. That's because those nights are just too hard to plan for us.

Then I walk around the kitchen with the cabinets and fridge and freezer open and make my meals

TA DA!! There's my board all ready to go for the week. I have main dish and sides on each day. I have future ideas I wanna do and things I need to get to complete my list. Easy peasy! (Get it, peas? Nevermind.) I usually do it Sunday morning. It's been such a nice change to not have to bicker about dinner anymore. I usually go home for lunch, and now I know what I need to take out for dinner every day! Again, I am OCD and that extra bit of organization in my life is HAUGE.

Like my little cow guy?

I have never hidden I am a huge dork...and never will. Share your fun meal board or creative way that you organize dinner around your house. Who knows? Maybe you'll inspire me to do my own cute fun creative one.Obviously I'm not a bad doodler. And I do love construction paper! Still can't wait to show you my fun Halloween decorations I made. Patience...patience Elie.

**I am available for hire in the northern Indianapolis area. Please feel free to email me at organizerbyday(@)gmail(dot)com for further information. I look forward to organizing with you!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

...obsessed with Halloween by night!!!

I big fat heart Halloween. I don't really know why, I've just always loved it. I think it has something to do with my parents. They always got really into it and apparently it's rubbed off...cause I love it!

I must say I have the most amazing, most patient, and most understanding fiancee in the world. I don't know how he puts up with me and my dorky goofy craftiness. I've had Halloween/Fall decorations up since August the middle of September. Sad, I know. But why should I have to wait until the weather feels like fall to decorate for fall? Oh wait, I don't have to wait...cause it's my house! Awesome!

One fun project I did today was inspired from my sister who you can check out here: She rocks.
I took a quick trip to Lowe's to see if they had little white bags that I could fill with leaves to make little ghosts, and I sadly realized Lowe's doesn't really have "Halloween" (fingers doing quotes in the air) stuff.

So...option B was to make my own. I stole some white material from my sis and got to work. These were my supplies:

I know, I'm so organized. I just cut the fabric into squares, cut a little teeny tiny hole in the middle:

Fancy picture, right? Then I tied a buncha knots at the end of a string about a foot long:

Then I taped the string to the fabric just so it wouldn't be pulled through in the wind (tape not pictured...because I forgot to picture it). I wadded up some newspaper into a ball, covered it with the fabric, tied a string around all that, and VOILA!!

(Do you see my oh-so-cute construction paper spider in the background? She's the sweetest little thing! More on my construction-paper-decor in another post)

Do that about a half dozen times and you get this:

SOO Cute! I love them. Their a big squishy-faced ghost family!!

And now they live in my trees:

And now I think I'm done with the front. Do you like my spider web bushes? And my spooooky ghoul awaiting trick-or-treaters?

Believe it or not, the rain and wind have zero affect on my webs. I couldn't believe at first, but now I do. It's wonderful! And my pumpkins are from our local pumpkin patch. Love 'em!

I know there wasn't much organization in this post, I just had to show those cuties off. And, technically, I showed you how to make them in an organized way ;) I'll show my wanna-be Halloween mantel soon, too. It's wanna-be because we don't actually have a mantel. It's really a Goodwill table that I let think is a mantel. And it's organized too! How's fall coming around your house? Are you crazy weird organized like me and have all your fall up already? Or are you like normal people and are just starting to get things out?  Happy fall everyone!

p.s. Yes! I did say fiancee! Since we've been apart I've gotten engaged, had a sort-of promotion go through at work, and dyed my hair. Lots going on! Promise I'll be back much sooner!

**I am available for hire in the northern Indianapolis area. Please feel free to email me at organizerbyday(@)gmail(dot)com for further information. I look forward to organizing with you!