Mission Organization- Part 3

I have been cleaning, organizing, somewhat simplifying (my life is never simplified completely) around the house. As I mentioned in a previous post, I tackled my kitchen over my Spring Break Holiday. It took me 2 solid days of cleaning, scrubbing, organizing, donating. I am fortunate to have a walk in pantry in my fairly large country kitchen.
 Here are a couple pictures of my walk in pantry BEFORE I cleaned and organized.
I had similar things in my drawers, cabinets, and pantry. Although it was accessible, it was not organized. I have collected recipes and cookbooks for years. I had them in 3 different places. Now, I have the ones I kept (yes, I did get rid of some) all in one spot. I have organized like things, labeled containers, and used up all the space. I am happy with how things have turned out.
Here are pictures of the pantry AFTER I organized.
I invested in some coated wire shelving to add to my wood shelfs in the cupboards and pantry to add more space for dishes and canned goods. I bought lazy Susan (not pictured) and placed in corners of shelves  where they overlapped. These work great for oils, sauces, bottled items, ketchup, dressings, etc...

 I bought some hanging coated wire shelf drawers on the top of one shelf for popcorn packets and Jello packets. Vertical storage for the plates, platters, and large dishes I use for buffets and parties.



As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been doing some organizing throughout the house. Last week I decided to tackle the kitchen. I cleaned drawers, cupboards, pantry, closets,  a hutch, above cupboards and inside of the oven. yeah!!!!
Here is a photo showing the "junk drawer" (next to the kitchen phone). I found this drawer organizer at a thrift store ($1.50). You can find plastic drawer organizers like this at TARGET for under $8.00. It is perfect for holding papers, tape rolls, pens/ pencils, scissors, etc...  There is nothing worse than trying to take a message and not being able to find paper and/ or something to write with. With this organizer everything is visible, at your fingertips and accessible.

We replaced a set of knives a while back but did not purchase a knife block to store them in. Personally, I do not like storing knives in a block- they get very dusty and sometimes get food or debris splashed on them from mixing, boiling, preparing at the counter. I found this fabulous knife storage container that adjusts to fit various sized drawers at TARGET. How perfect? Now I don't have to worry about anyone cutting themselves while reaching in the drawer.  Especially now that my kids do dishes.
Here is a photo of the drawer containing measuring cups, spoons, straws, fresh clips, coffee scoops, etc... I found this drawer divider at IKEA for under $3.00.  LOVE IT! Use this type of divider in many drawers throughout my house especially within my craft room (scroll down to bottom of my blog to see more photos).


Spring is in The Air! Blossoming Everywhere

Here are a some details about a couple exciting things going on at STAMPIN' UP!

SPRING  IS BLOSSOMING Promotion dates: April 1-30, 2011


Promotion details: Spring is Blossoming includes two brand-new products from the upcoming 2011-2012 Idea Book & Catalog. You can get these brand-new products in one of two ways:

•Spend $20* on any Stampin' Up! products and become eligible to purchase both the Four Frames Set and Paisley Petals Designer Series Paper.

•Host a $350* workshop and get the Four Frames Set and Paisley Petals Designer Series Paper for FREE!

Paisley Petals Designer Series Paper

#122367 - $9.95

Four Frames Stamp Set
Wood: #123440 - $20.95

Clear: #123442 - $15.95

Hostess Gift

#125735 - Four Frames Wood Stamp Set & Paisley Petals DSP - FREE

#125736 - Four Frames Clear Stamp Set & Paisley Petals DSP - FREE

•Orders may be placed either online, in person or at a workshop.

•Customers must spend $20 to be eligible to purchase the Four Frames stamp set and/or the Paisley Prints Designer Series Paper.

•Both items can be purchased once the $20 minimum is met; there is a limit of five per product once the $20 minimum is met.

•Customers will receive the Four Frames and Paisley Petals Designer Series Paper FREE if they host a $350 workshop (net sales before tax and shipping).

$5, $10, $15 GRAB BAGS AVAILABLE only while supplies last.


$5 GRAB BAG= $20  of retired merchandise excluding stamp sets.
$10 GRAB BAG= $40 of retired merchandise excluding stamp sets.
$15 GRAB BAG= $65 of retired merchandise excluding stamp sets.


I was on Spring break this past week and started my Spring Cleaning.  I have been on a mission... MISSION ORGANIZATION. Here is one of the first projects I did to organize an often cluttered spot in my kitchen.
I have had this bakers rack from a famous Ohio based basket company for many years. I bought the rack and baskets separately and always said I would eventually get the wood shelves for it one day. Well, many years have passed by and I have never bought those lovely wood shelves.
For years I stored a  larger basket on the bottom which covered the bottom part of the rack.  Recently we had to replace our telephones and, unfortunately, our new phones did not have a wall mount ( we should have read the details on the box better).  I needed a shelf to put on the rack to hold the kitchen phone and use as a charging station for cell phones. (now what to do with the ugly phone jack and cord behind the rack?)

I decided to use some cool paper I bought in a tablet, at a local craft store measuring 12 x 24 inches. This paper is not flat/ matte it has a sheen to it (not vinyl).  Its weight is a great for covering items, decoupaging items, and to run through large formatting die cut machines. I especially like it because it can be dusted or wiped clean. The tablet contained 36 various bold designer papers from the HANDMADE line. I chose this subtle green pattern to wrap some corrugated cardboard trimmed to size.
I cut the cardboard 1 inch smaller lengthwise and 2 inches larger width wise for both shelves. I cut the green paper 1.5 inches larger on all sides. I trimmed the corners on bias (diagonal). Wrapped the corners using super sticky adhesive. I finished the edges on under side with wide scotch tape. I am sorry I did not take photos while making it. If you have further questions please let me know. 
 This shelf is located to the right of a long counter, under phone jack, near drawer containing paper and pencils. I use the top basket for holding vitamins and daily medications and the basket on the bottom holds mail/ bills. I am pleased with the way it turned out.
You cannot tell it is cardboard shhhhhhh... its our little secret. ;)


Easy Skillet Beef Strogonoff

Hello, sorry it has been a while since I have posted. I had a computer crash, and after purchasing a new computer and trying to get things set up, I contracted a virus that wiped everything out. I was without a computer off and on for over 3 weeks. Still trying to get things up and running. I am missing my old HP photo processing software. Tying to adjust to the Canon photo stuff. Oh well, it will take time.

I'm back with another semi homemade/ perfect weeknight/ workday recipe.
1 1/2 lb  lean ground beef (90% or more)
1/2 medium sweet onion, chopped
1 pint mushrooms, sliced *optional
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbs flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 can cream of mushroom soup (reduced fat works)
8 oz sour cream (reduced fat works)
*cooked egg noodles approximately 1 cup per person*

Brown ground beef, onions until just cooked (not pink and onion softened). Drain excess grease. Add  mushrooms and cook until tender.

Add garlic, flour, salt, pepper, soup and sour cream and stir until mixed thoroughly. Do not allow to boil. Serve on top of egg noodles. Garnish with tops of green onions, chives, fresh parsley or other favorite herbs.

 Its not the prettiest dish but it is a good one to fall back on. Both my girls and my husband enjoy it. Its been raining here all day and no sign of letting up for a while- its a good dish to have on a cold damp day like today. I cannot wait until warm weather gets here... we like to grill out nearly everyday. Stay tuned.