Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Goodnight Kitchen

Good Evening!

Coffee maker set. Check!
Cat's bowl cleaned. Check!
Dishwasher started. Check!

But oops, my counter is a big dumping ground. 
I moved a few things upstairs where they belong and 
put the rest on my desk to deal with tomorrow morning.

And finally, I did get my sink clean and shiny! 

Good night kitchen. Sleep tight!

Trust me this simple routine could change your mornings, friends!

Monday, April 10, 2017

It All Began With Coffee

I'm not exactly sure when we started preparing our coffee each evening. It's been awhile though, because we do like hot coffee when we start our mornings. I realize I may be old school with a drip coffee maker, but we a little too frugal to pay for a high end Keurig type. And I know those are very fast, so your evening habit may not start with coffee.

Actually, I should make go back farther than the coffee. Only on very rare and busy nights do we not clean up the kitchen right after dinner. One of us puts leftover and refrigerated items away, while the other one of us is usually cleaning off dishes. This involves putting as many that will fit in the dishwasher and hand washing the rest. We let the dishes air dry. 

But I've been getting the air dried dishes put away and off the counter during my final round of kitchen. It is so nice to not have them in the way in the morning while we are making breakfast and preparing lunches. 

So after the coffee is prepped, and air dried dishes are put away (which only takes one small minute), I start the dishwasher. Sometimes I put it on a delay so that the dishwasher starts after those that take evening showers.

Next up is washing out the cat's bowl. Our cat Liberty now eats wet food several times a day. By morning the wet food has become dried on the bowl. I didn't realize this was a problem until my husband (who often feeds her in the morning) was out of town for a week. I found myself listening to a demanding cat while I cleaned her bowl. Not so much fun. So much easier if I take a minute to clean it the evening before. 

And finally why not clean up the sink at the end of the day? 
That's the new habit I've decide to add.

I'm currently out of my usual sink cleaner, so tonight I used a little baking soda and dish detergent along with a Scotch Brite pad. After it was all rinse away I wiped it down with a dry towel, so it is shiny! 

See those towels on the left? Those are what I used today. They are going into the washing machine; ready for the next time I do laundry. And then notice below, I set out two fresh towels and a wash cloth. I'm all set for tomorrow!

Do you have a nightly kitchen routine? Does it include replacing used towels or cleaning your sink? Do you set any machines to run, such as a dishwasher or coffee maker? 

Adding A New Habit

I'm adding a new habit to my life.

Cleaning and shining the kitchen sink every night before bed.

I usually run the dishwasher, and start the coffee maker. And often clean out the cat's food dish. But now, I'm ready to add a new routine.

Cleaning and shining the kitchen sink.

I just really like coming into the kitchen in the morning with everything clean and tidy. And this will assure I get the sink clean a little more often. And it turns out it only takes a couple minutes!

Over the years, I've found that adding a new habit to something I already do helps me integrate it to my life. Remember, how I've mentioned that I clean sheets on payday. I record income and pay bills on payday, and it makes it easy to remember I also clean sheets.

This is the same. I start the dishwasher and set up the coffee maker. It's easy to start adding a new habit to something I already do. That new habit is now the kitchen sink.

Anyone already do this? Anyone want to join me? I think I will post my shiny sink every now and then on Organized Friends to keep me accountable.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Decluttering Bag by Bag: Bag 27

I finally found a few more things that I can count as bag 27 in this decluttering project! It helped that I remembered that my daughter has been holding on to a new pair of shoes for an art project. However, she has decided to abandon that project. I'm going to attempt to sell the shoes.

I found two hair products I thought I might use (they had been my daughter's) and I realized I'm not going to use them either. And there were two workout towels that were starting to shred, so they need to go. And there are some inserts to a bra that I'm not using. And finally a screw and a mini Ziploc bag. It's not like those last two items make a big difference, but I don't need to be saving such things. 

Just three more bags of items I need to find to meet my 30 bag goal! I will be back once I have those to share.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Decluttering Bag by Bag: Bag 26

Decluttering Bag by Bag

More things to let go of! These last bags are going to be the hardest, I think. But I remain optimistic that I will get to thirty...someday! 

New shoes purchased mean the old ones go, along with the new box. Extra store hangers found. And I'm finally letting a very old workout bra go after buying a replacement. And my daughter was a technology fair recently. She came home with some goodies that really aren't that great...so they go too! 

It's all bagged up! I will make a final Goodwill run at the end of the month. I have already made one drop off of the majority of the items. 

I've been watching a woman declutter for Lent on YouTube. She is decluttering by categories. One was jewelry. Another was swimsuits. As you saw recently, I have very little jewelry and only one swimsuit, so I'm not so great at following along with her decluttering journey! 

Just four bags left to make it to 30!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Spring Cleaning: Coffee Pot

It's Spring! Time to clean out the coffee pot.

This is probably at least a month or quarterly task, but I'm ashamed to say it has been too long since I did a clean out of our coffee pot. I'm probably old school with a drip coffee maker, since Keurig's are all the rage now. 

I filled the decanter will half water, and half vinegar and ran it through a brewing cycle. 

I even put in a filter which did accumulate a few little bits, but may not have been needed.

The reading I did online recommended stopping the brewing cycle half way through to let the vinegar water mixture set. I did do this for one cycle, but ended up doing a couple more and skipped that portion on the last two times. The area that really needed cleaning was the water reservoir. I had to put a paper towel down there and move it around with a butter knife to get in the crevices. The final step is too run plain water through it one last time.

Do you clean your coffee brewing system regularly? If not, spring is a great time to get it done. Maybe you could do this one night during dinner preparations. 

Monday, March 27, 2017

Minimalism: My Clothes

Want to look in my closet? Want to see how unfashionable I am? Let's go take a look. 

Remember, I don't work outside the home, so my need to dress up is nearly non existent. First notice that I have five pairs of shoes in my hanging shoe holder. I have a pair of sneakers, too, that are not shown. I honestly would like to add at least one pair, as I did just let one go sometime in the last month with all this decluttering. Those shoes were just too worn to be wearing any longer! 

As you can see, I hang my workout shirts because in my world all shirts get hung on hangers. Try to look close and see how few hangers there really are. That will give you an idea about the clothes I have. I didn't count them, as it isn't about the numbers for me. It's about having just what I need. 

On the shelves above my clothes are shorts, capris jeans, and my pajamas. Notice how those aren't full? Just enough. 

Now let's look in my under things drawer. I spared you the view of my underwear! Lots of socks and just a couple bras. I do laundry regularly, so no worry about running out. :)

This is the last spot you would find my clothes, the second drawer of my dresser. Workout pants and shorts, long underwear tops and bottoms, fleece pants and my swimsuit! 

What do you think? Enough clothes? Not enough? Too much? 

It is a personal decision, but I like that what I have doesn't feel like clutter. I can easily find what I need when I need it.