Decluttering and redoing the front entry and office.

So, we had to buy a new front door after this happened.IMG_0830

Out front door was a French door with 2 panels on either side. So this winter, the inside of the dual panes started to get condensation. The door was 20 years old. But then last week I heard a pop and snap and one of the panels completely cracked. A project we were putting off till who knows when now had to be done pronto. That meant rebuilding a new door frame and the wall next to it as the other door had 3 doors and this new one would just be single.

I found a nice inexpensive Craftsman style door and we went down to Lowes to pick it up. Then B pulled the old door out and rebuilt the frame. So it looks quite nice. The plywood on the other side isn’t done yet but will be soon. then we will have to put up shake shingles to match the house and then paint.

But we also pulled everything out of the room and including his desk and realized the desk was just IMG_0844too dark and big to put back in. I have it listed for Free on a local group site.

So, of course, one thing leads to another and we’ve emptied the room and will put back only what is useful and beautiful. We decided to go down to Ikea as they had a certain desk on the family discount ending today.  We looked at it and decided it was too big too so we picked a smaller one, a BIlly book shelf and a filing cabinet.

But then we decided that since everything was out and we had a package of unused flooring to get more of the same and redo the floor. We’re not pulling up the vinyl tiles as it will help be an insulator as this original was just a porch.  So more projects. Everything is all over the place ( which is like craziness for me), but I will endure. By the weekend, all will be back to normal( I hope).

We decluttered another huge load from the barn 2 bookcases, lots of little stuff and a rug.  so that is good and now, the barn is looking so good with the extra shelves for my son’s (crap) of stuff…. I’m sure it’s useful in his eyes.

that’s it for now.  Dinner is Taco Tuesday. Black bean quesadillas.

 

Sunday Stuff

So, the latest news is my son isn’t going to be going to SFSU.  insert tears:( He decided that he doesn’t want to be burdened with the student loans in the amount of 25,000. We were going to be co signers on the one loan but then it turned out we were to be primary so we said we wouldn’t do that. But there are lots of private loans that he could take out and we could co -sign and then after a period of time, we would get removed from the loan. Then he found out at orientation that even though they said they accepted the 105 units from Sierra College, only 70 units would be applied to his degree. So essentially that means 2 years and that then is 2 years of student loans. So, I agree that is way too heavy a burden for a 25-year-old. ( when he finished). So at least for now, that’s the update. I wish we could just pay for it for him but we don’t have that kind of money and it’s too close to retirement to take out a loan for that.

It’s quite hot here again 101 today. I think this week it’s supposed to drop at least into the 90’s.

We went to drop off Good will stuff yesterday and because they were so full of stuff wouldn’t  take our items. What the heck.. they make so much money off of all this free stuff they’re given and they can’t figure out their intake system.  So, it’s in the back of my VW and I’ll try the big Goodwill today. I have a prescription to pick up and I need to get cat food.  WE did manage to drop a full box of VHS and hardback books that my son didn’t sell at the yard sale. That was at the pet bookstore.

We’ve had good success with organizing the barn shelves and it’s looking good. There’s still left over flea market stuff I need to process or my son does. But right now it’s all sitting in front of the barn and is a mess. But we have made progress.

My iPad just died this morning when I went to open it to write a review for NetGalley where I get free e books in exchange for reviews.  That’s where I have Bluefire downloaded so I can read the PDF versions of the books. So I opened my IPad and it blinked and lights went out.  It is 7 years old or maybe 8. It’s the second generation I pad my husband won in a raffle at work. They don’t do that anymore nor do they do the trips like the one he won when we went to Hawaii. So 7-8 years is pretty good but now I’ll have to figure something out. My kindle fire doesn’t have the blue fire so not sure what I’ll do.

Today is a gym day and dinner is a big chopped salad, grilled chicken, and grilled tofu. Oh, and I think I’ll make some couscous. Oh, and I have left over pizza dough so I’ll grill a pizza. I saw an interesting recipe from William Sonoma that was zucchini and pesto pizza.

On decluttering, my son is bringing the antique bin table up to his friend’s house and so now that’s gone too. Yeah, less stuff is more space.

 

Simple Sunday

Well, my son did the flea market yesterday and even with 100+ temperatures, he made over $200 for his college fund.  So a lot of the vintage stuff I gave him sold quickly and some antique stuff. Nothing too remarkable but it’s gone and he got a little money.  So I’m very pleased. By 12 most vendors were packing up because most people don’t come out in the heat of the day. But he got rid of the 2 mission style chairs and a bookcase. So I’m thrilled.

If you’re looking for a summer dinner, pizza on the gas grill is amazing and easy.  You do need to heat the gas grill up to the highest it’ll go @ 800 or whatever it says and then be sure to spray the grill with Pam or I use Costco’s Canola spray. Then when you’ve heated up the grill for say, 20 minutes you can do the pizza. You must have a pizza peel and be sure to use semolina flour under the pizza dough. Just a sprinkling. then roll out or stretch the dough till it’s about 12 ” in diameter.  I’ve used homemade dough and Trader Joes and both work fine.  Then here’s the trick, use just a few tablespoons of sauce,  some mozzarella, then a few toppings but very sparse. I use buffalo mozzarella along with the regular shredded but not a lot. Then i may add a sprinkling of red onion, black olives and if I have any pepperoni or salami and top with a few shreds of fresh basil.

IMG_0273

Cheese and pepperoni pizza with basil.

Then you must shake the pizza peel to be sure the pizza is moving and then slide onto the hot grill.  Close the grill top. Don’t move it for about 5 minutes till the crust starts to cook and gets a nice char.  Then rotate once 1/2 way and close the top again. Check in another 5 minutes. It cooks very fast and is superior to anything you could buy out. Try it out and it saves the kitchen from getting too hot.

We went to the farmers market yesterday and bought some nice veggies, broccoli, etc. Then I bought a 3 pack of organic strawberries to make a jam.  I came home unloaded stuff and started the jam. I ended up with 5 pints from the 3 pack. Very tasty. I may go get more next week as berries must be at there peak.

Today was a gym day and I did the bathroom zone for tomorrow. Quick wipes of shelves, wash window and mirrors and reorganizing the small dresser we use for combs, brushes etc.

I wash sheets on Sunday and towels so I’m off to finish that.

Dinner is a huge chopped salad with stuff we got at the farmers market yesterday and I put a turkey breast in the crockpot. I use the kosher turkey breast from Trader Joes. Quite good.  I’m going to use some Tofurky turkey slices for the veg with gravy.

Still really hot here 101 today. 😦

 

It’s July

I have had another great few weeks since seeing my oncologist and just living life.  We had that heat spell which was difficult. But now it’s been lovely. Low 90’s predicted for the next 2 weeks or so. I am so glad I got the pool for B for father’s day. We are all enjoying it.

 

IMG_0805.jpgThis sits below the house so it’s nice. We’d ( okay me) like a deck even a small one on that upper edge. Perhaps in a few weeks after we do a few house projects. We need to replace the front door as the French door has condensation in the panels.  I priced out a nice door for @ $400. That’s project number one. But actually, first, we need to get those shelves in the barn done for my son’s crap  very nice things.  so that’ll be , I hope, this week. Then where we had water leaking in the siding on the sun porch needs to be fixed. this is actually and easy fix, relatively. The siding needs to get taken off, Tyvek put on over new plywood and then the siding put back on.  So that’s project 3. Then miscellaneous projects here and there.

I’ve been doing lots of little projects and decluttering here and there. I finally cleared out this old strange jewelry case that was some relative of my husband. I’ll put the case in my son’s flea market stuff.

Today is a gym day and then I might go to Home Depot.

Dinner is ??? I’m sure I’ll come up with something. last night I made BBQ tempeh. I never knew you needed to steam or simmer tempeh before using. It helps it absorb more flavor. It was ok. Not great but ok.

 

Friday Stuff

The sauerkraut seems to be bubbling fine. I tasted it this morning and it’s sour. Tomorrow I’ll taste again and then put in the fridge.  So far it is an easy thing to do. In the fridge it’ll last for a few months the recipe said. I also got out the Zojirushi to make some sourdough bread. It’s a small loaf and came out good. I haven’t been making bread as it’s been too hot and we just haven’t been eating much.

This morning I had to go down to Costco to pick up Bonnie’s anti-seizure pills. ( Bonnie is one of the border collies my daughter adopted a year ago. Shortly after bringing her to her forever home she had some seizures so this is a monthly expense for my daughter.

So I picked up laundry soap, toothpaste, TP and a few other nonfood items.  So now I won’t need to go next week.

Then I went to the gym for a short workout and then home to feed the dogs and do some of the chores my husband usually does. ( goat, chickens, pool, etc)

I’ve been decluttering and moving some things around. I decluttered dishes. and I’ll box them up to go the pet thrift store.  Then I moved my Melmac set into the cabinet so it’s not on the pantry shelf. Also, washed most of my mason jars and will move them into my closet pantry. Once again, trying to reduce the visual stuff and just reduce.

I find minimalism and decluttering such an interesting process of releasing layers of things. I’m sure it’s related to inner things and how at times we hold on to things and then poof, one day they just don’t matter anymore.  Tomorrow I’m not going out except maybe to drop off this load so I’m heading out to the barn to tidy and do some organizing. I’m hoping my son gets this flea market thing he’s doing organized as I’d like to move that stuff out.

I know one thing is that it’s not a one-shot deal but really an ongoing process.  Even with the Kon Mari method, which I have done, 6 months later there is still decluttering going on.

It’s been another lovely day. A little warm 93 or so, but not too bad.

Tonight is pizza night.

 

Ongoing de-cluttering

So, I took down the 2 bins of Waldorf books and toys that were my children’s and pulled out some stuff to sell on craigs list. I reduced the amount I’m keeping( for now ) to one bin. So that’s a big win.  One of my goals is to keep reducing things so that there’s one bin less than when I started.  I’ve done pretty well and even my Life magazines are down to another full bin’s worth. So progress.

The barn storage is looking fabulous. B hung 2 more bikes and it looks better in the back room. I really need to get rid of my one bike which is a specialized mountain bike. I’m kinda attached to it but I haven’t used it since I got the Schwinn cruiser. So, I may pull it out and look at it. So other than seasonal Christmas which is @ 4 small bins, the Life magazines at 5 bins, one of the memorabilia, and one of my children’s art and main lesson books from Waldorf, that’s it. So pretty excellent.  I’ve already got a big pile ready for my son to sell when he does the flea market.

I have a bag I’m slowly filling with little things to get rid of. A couple of scarves I don’t want anymore, little odds and ends but honestly it adds up.

I’m also looking at getting rid of the 2 mission style chairs and just use the Poang. And then maybe get another Poang when we go to Ikea next. I like the mission chairs because there solid, but the covers are really stained( even after washing) and the foam is kinda uneven.  I thought about recovering them but the backs of the chairs are a fabric so it would look kinda odd. Better to just be done with it. Maybe by the end of summer. We hardly watch any shows in the summer since we usually sit out till 8 or so.  Of course, I’d love to find a couple of Danish style arm chairs but that’s probably not going to happen at least in my price range.

I just read an ebook called Discardia. It’s about getting rid of things but more the understanding behind creating a more simple home and life. I enjoyed it. I think it was 2.99, so affordable.

It is so true, that once your house becomes less cluttered and simplified there’s more space and openness.  For myself, less visual clutter helps me enjoy my home more. It’s all a work in progress. Right?

I’d love to have our entry be simpler but it’s a work in progress. B has his work area to the left of the door and then to right are 2 white buckets that hold dog food. We are going to have to replace the door this summer as the dual pane are moisture filled so that’s not good. Plus it looks funky.  So the door will be set to the right more(it’ll need to be reframed) and will give more space when it opens. We’re going to go to Habitat for Humanity outlet store to try and find a front door.

Continuing to minimalise

We had someone come get the oak table from down at our corner so that was really cool. My husband was not about to lug it back in the van and home again. Ok, he would have but certainly with some grumbling. yeah, it’s gone.  The space out in barn where it lived and held junk on it is open now and looks good.  My goal is to have the shelves in the barn only have what we think is essential and practical.

I took the van to the thrift stores and dropped off 6 boxes of stuff to Goodwill including my almost new bread maker. Then over the Humane society thrift store and dropped a box of dishes that are part of a set but these were chipped slightly so I took them out. And then, to the bookstore and dropped a box of books off and two very old 1855 books. I checked on eBay and they were listed for @ 25 each. Nothing selling so I really don’t want musty old books I’ll certainly never read. Then a small handful of my vintage postcards I keep dwindling down.

Then after I came home and researched starting a web page for the FOAL, I went out to the barn and reorganized some and pull another 1/2 bin of magazines to go the thrift store. I’m actually going to go back our and see if I can get one bin emptied.  I also will bring in my kid’s Waldorf lesson books and they can go thru and keep some.  So it’s getting there.  I think now there’s 4 Christmas bins, 5 magazine bins, 1 of our memory things, and 1 bin of the kids LOTR cards. Gee, they must have every single one.  But that’s theirs, not mine. So I feel great progress and if the time comes to move, it’ll be whittled down to essentials.

I did find in an art portfolio my cutting mat I was looking for but its warped and not really usable so I’ll have to donate that and get a new one and a cutter.  It makes cutting edges quite easy and clean lines. I don’t need it yet but eventually.

Tomorrow is a gym day.  Wednesday I’m going to Costco.

Tonight is cheese ravioli with a garlic parmesan sauce, salad and maybe a piece of fish for my daughter when she gets home from work at 7pm.