Monthly Archives: April 2011

Priorities: The Time Out Tip.

In case you haven’t noticed, I have been much less frequent with my blog posts the last two weeks! Between trips, teething and other fun but time consuming things popping up in our family schedule lately I have gotten a tad bit behind!

Eric’s final weeks of classes for this semester (he’s in Seminary) are fast approaching…as is summer (lots of fun planned!), I have begun plans to redecorate our churches nursery, plans for Women’s Retreats are in full swing at the moment, and of course my top priority…glorifying God through the everyday running of our family and home, have very suddenly filled up my plate. On top of this my sister-in-law has asked me to write a guest post on spring cleaning for her new blog…which then of course gets me thinking about new ways I could do a little spring cleaning or re-organizing around our own home (it’s kinda like that whole “When You Give a Mouse A Cookie” book….”when you give Ashley a chance to think about cleaning or organizing…..” you get the idea). Anyhow, bottom line: I need to take a little break to make sure I am keeping the most important things, the most important things.

Our family....what makes these "time outs" so very important and so very worth it to me!

So I am taking a time out. A time out from the blog posts. The organizing tip here: When you have to many things on your plate, you have to be able to recognize when and what to take a time out from. And although I love doing the blog (really so much fun!) I realized that for the next two weeks it is wiser for me to not spread myself so thin.

I will be back in the blogosphere on Monday, May 9th with lots of fun family stories, helpful organizing tips, and fun do-it-yourself decorating projects! In the meantime enjoy browsing through some past posts on organizing tips, our little families life, household cleaning, and/or some fun decorating ideas to help you with your own spring cleaning!

Oh and a very happy birthday to my most wonderful and amazing mother today (couldn’t write a post on her birthday and not mention it)!!!

Excited to be back with some fun new posts in just a couple of weeks! Until then, thanks for your encouragement and understanding!

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My 50th Post: Just for Fun.

That’s right…I have made it to my fiftieth post, Eric is so proud!!! Thank you to all you readers for your kind comments along the way! I am so happy to hear that you all are enjoying my blog and being encouraged as you read….and some of you even getting more organized (music to my ears!)!

So for today to celebrate Post #50 I thought a little poll would be fun. I looked at what the most popular posts have been since I started this blog back in January and I have listed the Top Six (the last two were tied with number of views…otherwise it would’ve just been top five) most popular posts below.

Just click on which one out of these six was your favorite (yes you can vote more than once if you really want to)!

Here are the links to the posts listed above (in case you need a refresher):

“A Few of Emma’s Favorite Things.”

“A Very Simple Organizing Tip.”

“Emma’s New Hat.”

“The Day a Stinky Diaper Took Over Our Home.”

“Our Valentine Weekend Fun.”

“The First Ever: Ask Ashley.”

Happy 50th Post Wednesday everybody!

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Two Cents Tuesday: The Ten Minute Tip.

Cute timers are always helpful.

Take ten minutes before you go to bed each night to pick up little odds and ends around the house (including putting your clothes away from that day…I know, I know never a favorite thing to do, but oh so worth it).

This is completely doable for you now that you have the tools needed (Organizing Principles 1, 2, 3 & Organizing Process 1, 2, 3) to have your home in order, making this ten minute tip much easier to follow through on, so starting tonight, set a timer (seriously) and see how much you can get done, make this a habit…you’ll be happy you did!

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Solutions to the Spice Rack Situation.

To go along with yesterdays “Two Cents”, I thought I’d provide some help for one of the most challenging storage issues in a kitchen…..”What to do with all the spices?” They’re great to cook with but oh the mess they cause in our cabinets and drawers.

A couple pointers: always try to keep your spices visible (you won’t use what you can’t see, plus then you’ll know when you need a refill) & use a small container or basket for those spice “packets” that can so easily get lost amidst all the bottles.

That being said….here are a few solutions to the “spice rack situation”:

1) Spice Stack Rack – (White)

A great way to make the most use of the vertical space in your cabinets, and you can still see all your spices pretty easily while hiding away the clutter feel of lots of little spice bottles.

2) Spice Rack Storage/Organizer

This is one of my favorites! The spices are soooo easy to see and also so easily accesible.

3) Spice Rack – Expanding (White) (2.25″h x 12″-23″w x 18″d)

Nice and extremely handy for those of you who prefer to store your spices in a drawer.

4) Olde Thompson 16-Jar Orbit Spice Rack

This is the one I have in my cabinets, I love that they are labeled and you can easily rotate to get to the spice you want.

5) Spice Rack – Mesh (Silver) (12″H x 12 3/4″W x 2 3/4″D)

Another great one for those of you with a nice pantry space, has nice little hangers on the bottom for teaspoons/tablespoons measurements.

6) Kamenstein 6-Canister Magnetic-Strip Spice Rack

This one is great to go on the side of the fridge for very easy access for those gourmet cooks out there!

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Two Cents Tuesday: The First Room to Organize.

No this is not my kitchen...maybe someday.

As you all begin to contemplate your grand plans for spring cleaning, let me give you a tip on where to start, the hub of the home: The Kitchen. An organized kitchen will save you time and money almost immediately, just a few benefits; you will know what you have (you won’t buy unnecessary items); you will know where to put things away (putting things away will go much faster & you will spend less time moving items around just to fit in all the cabinet…yeah I know some of you do that!); and most importantly your family will be more willing to help in the kitchen (as I was reminded this weekend when my wonderful hubby spontaneously unloaded the dishwasher for me just because)!

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I Had Big Plans for Thursday.

When the sun came up this past Thursday morning, I was eager to have a very productive day. I was ready to take a nice walk with Emma to Target (to get some things for a “Happy Spring Break” surprise dinner for Eric when he got home), get things all prepped and set-up at home for that “Happy Spring Break” dinner, clean the bathrooms, do some work on Women’s Retreat, visit Eric’s Grandpa (currently recovering at a nursing home from a minor stroke) and of course just the usual everyday jobs that keep a stay-at-home mom very occupied day to day.

Instead, Emma had some “tummy” issues (nothing serious, just a little gas..meaning lots of crying).

There was no walk to target as Emma was not such a happy camper with her nap schedule being basically non-existent (due to the “tummy” issues). For this same reason, we did not get over to visit Eric’s Grandpa. Instead of cleaning the bathrooms I caught Emma right before she tried to bite the toilet (as I am still getting used to her fast crawling abilities now). Instead of working on Women’s Retreat, I barely had enough time to get the dishes done and eat a quick bite for lunch. And instead of Eric coming home to a nice “Happy Spring Break” surprise dinner, he came home to a very tired (and somewhat teary eyed) wife and daughter.

In the end, though, I can truly say I am thankful that none of my “productive” plans were accomplished this past Thursday.

At one point in this very long day, with my face flat down on our the bed, I prayed, asking God to give me extra doses of His grace and joy so that little Emma would be able to see that in me, even as I was feeling so incredibly tired and overwhelmed….and He (faithful as always) did. In the midst of my weariness, because of God’s grace, I was grateful.Grateful that I have a wonderful husband who just holds me when he comes home seeing that I am so exhausted and lets me know so sweetly that he appreciates my work at home. Grateful that God has blessed us with a beautiful, happy and healthy baby girl, who adds so much joy to our home daily. Grateful that I get to stay home with and care for and enjoy our little baby girl day in and day out. And grateful that God reminded me, so graciously, of my absolute dependence on Him, showing me, once again, that He makes all the difference in every single move I make as a wife and mom.

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Durso Video: Emma’s Crawling.

Taking a break from all organizing tips today folks because we have ourselves a little crawler girl!!! Daddy & Mommy are so proud (as you can so clearly see)!!

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