Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Organization mania.

I have been slacking. A lot. I'm still working on my goals, but somehow these last couple of weeks, I seem to have lost some steam! Contemplating this last night, I realized I need to get my butt back in gear again, at the very least with blogging!

This past weekend, I did have some organization mania. Along with simplifying, I need to organize and get less cluttered! My head feels chaotic when I have so much stuff and even more so when it is strewn about!

This weekend I worked on some of these tasks. I had a drawer full of ziploc baggies to store my meats and frozen goods as well as bags of teas tossed in the drawer. Some loose leaf teas were still in their original paper bag and I others that were in boxes, but already in tea bags. The boxes took up so much space it didn't seem I could fit any other items in the drawer. I began by pouring all of the the loose leaf teas into some glass containers to better store them. Then, I took all of the tea bags out of their boxes and combined them all in a plastic tupperware container for easier storage. Then a little other rearranging and VOILA!

I then began working at my filing cabinet. Now, it would be good if a filing cabinet had an order to it, wouldn't it? This is what they are for after all. Mine, did not. I did have to spend some money going out to Office Max to buy some expandable folders. Many of my files have smaller items that I didn't want falling out. I went through all of them and began to label all of the folders. Now? My documents are easy to find and file! I did have one problem, however. I made a "coupon" file. It has since occurred to me that this is completely useless and disorganizes all of the organization I just accomplished! I hopped on to and purchased a new coupon holder that is magnetic and will attach to my fridge! It has an area to store a scissors and cards for categories. I will have to start clipping the coupons I get immediately and filing them. The cost was $8 and no shipping was charged. Today, while working at the food shelf, I also realized I could simply bring in the coupons that I don't utilize; coupons for diapers, formula and food coupons, and keep them in my office for those interested! It will be my new contribution to the food shelf! Can't wait!

Out with the old...
In with the new!

Finally, I had bought a new microfiber mop and a broom. Microfiber will be a huge cost savings due to not having to purchase disposable cloths and will also help me to eliminate waste.  I hooked these to my wall with some 3M hooks. Nice and handy, but still out of the way.

I used another 3M hanger to hang my grocery bags. I try and only use the reusable grocery bags when I go to the store. Not only does it get me a discount at Rainbow Foods, but it's better than using tons of paper and plastic. I like to have them handy and this 3M hanger (originally meant for cords) is very useful as I know they will not fall off but are right within quick reach when I'm out the door.

Other side projects involve:


I made myself a treat for Valentine's weekend! I've been craving going out for brunch. Breakfast foods are my favorite and a weakness of mine was frequent brunching out. Rather than going out, I realized I had some old pancake mix and I went out to purchase some Jimmy Dean sausage that was on sale. I made the lowest amount on the pancake box and had 2 pancakes left over which I froze in a Ziploc bag. I at them later in the week.

In addition, I set out on a new project of starting to use beans in bulk rather than cans. Just a little more healthy and a bit cheaper. I read how to prepare these using the quick method: Boil for 2 minutes and then let sit in the hot water for an hour. Super easy! I did have one downfall in that I think these could cook a little longer. I used some of these to cook a soup (see below) and they were not completely done. I would recommend a little more time for boiling. This is something I will have to continue to experiment with.

I portioned out the beans into baggies with a cup per baggie. I poured a little extra water into each baggie as I've read they keep better with liquid in them. I put 2 cups of the red beans aside to use for this WONDERFUL minestrone soup! It's a mimic of Olive Garden's recipe and I love it! I have been making this soup for a while now and every time I do, it feeds me all week! I've been thinking about portioning some aside and freezing it, just not sure if it will taste the same. I used my own vegetable broth that I made in the minestrone soup.

Veggie broth:

Place any leftover vegetables except leafy vegetables and broccoli into a stock pot. I used potatoes, onions, celery and carrots.  Put enough water into the pot to cover the vegetables. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 1.5 hours. Add water as needed when it begins to get low.

My minestrone:

Clothing and STYLE!

I've been working all week on putting together outfits and I feel like I'm actually getting a hang of this! It does however, require me to do some extra shopping and spending. The boots I had before were not the most flattering for me, as Sally at informed during my consult. They were hitting me at the widest part of my calf. I set out this weekend to look for boots. I checked at all the thrift stores, but found nothing. I headed out to the Mall of America. I was scared because I honestly hate shopping, especially at the Mall of America. I went to almost every shoe store and couldn't find any boots I liked. Then...Steve Madden's came into my life. I picked the best time! Boots were on sale! I found this pair which I think will work well. I am going to purchase the brown pair. These were marked down about $70. Then, I picked up a 2nd pair, a different style with heels, that were black for only $19! They were originally over $100! What a steal! What do you think?

I also went to the Goodwill over the weekend to pick up some extra things Sally had encouraged me to look for. I got a really cute green sweater and a purple scarf as well as some accessories. I'm so proud I've been able to come up with some really cute outfits on my own with these items! I've been taking some pictures and here they are! :)

Sally had also encouraged me to try on some high waisted jeans as I'm a pair shaped woman and these would be the most flattering for my figure. I bought a pair, (also on sale), at Banana Republic. I think that this is how they are supposed to fit and I can definitely see the benefit as there is no space in the back of the pants like usual with low rise pants. Yea! No more plumber's cleavage! :)

All of this clothing and feeling good about how I look reminds me of another goal: I need to get on top of losing my stress pounds! I've maintained the 5 pounds lost that I had previously discussed but it is time to get down to business. I'm ready to get back to the health me! I've been exercising more lately and I'm really going to try and make an effort to eat better as well. I also joined a dodgeball team which has been an exciting way to be active and meet new people.

I guess after looking over all of this, I realize I have achieved some goals this week, haven't I? ;)


  1. I had a comment from a reader who wasn't able to comment on here, but did on my Facebook page. She asked what the water to bean ratio was for my beans.

    I informed that I used 7 cups of water to 2 cups of beans. The instructions I had read said 6-8 cups to every 2 cups.

  2. I spend about 2 bucks a day on coffee but that's still 60 a month--it's STILL too much! I haven't really put effort into cutting back like I wanted to!