Category Archives: Organizing/DeCluttering

Our Plight Continues

I’m feeling like “Ms. Grumpy” this morning, in that our plight of being stuck on top of our ridge line continues. We are still unable to find anyone to spread the big truckload of crusher dust. I’ve left our name and phone number with, plus HomeAdvisor, two of the online home worker finder places, hoping that 1) someone calls me back, 2) we can afford the services, and 3) the person can come soon. Fingers and all other appendages are still crossed. Of COURSE it’s rainy today.

Yesterday I finally finished going through the pantry shelves, throwing things away, cleaning and reorganizing what is left. (I won’t go into detail about a can that ‘exploded’ in the back, leaving a mess that had congealed, or the little bitty bugs I vacuumed up and then sprayed for. All is clean now.


We just finished gathering our trash, both for the week plus what I’m throwing out from the pantry. We’re acting as though we’ll be able to get it down to the bottom of the driveway tomorrow. Hope springs eternal.


I’m trying to choose something in the house to tackle each day, particularly because 1) the rain seems to be with us forever, 2) we are stuck up here, and 3) I want to feel as if I’m accomplishing SOMETHING each day. There are MANY things needing attention from which to choose…

I wish you a nice Monday.

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The Nose Knows


The pantry is coming together finally. I’ve spent several days in there, trying to make sense of things that we’ve been stashing wherever there was room. Since it’s a walk-in pantry (one of our priorities when we built our home about 35 years ago), there is a lot of room to stash before attention is seriously needed.

This is the ‘supplies’ side of the pantry. It holds kitchen and bathroom supplies, cooking supplies and appliances, cleaning supplies, medicine, etc.

I tackled this yesterday. I hate to admit that I found some cans that had failed on the bottoms, making a mess, expired foods, boxes of food that were old or failing, etc. I cleaned it all out, threw out a bunch, cleaned the shelves and reorganized things so they’re easy to see and access. This was the part my husband noticed yesterday. :0)

This is the area I’m planning to attack today. I have boxes and a loose organization, but again, things have been stashed. Some things need to be tossed, due to age or non-use. I want to organize better, so I can find the things I’ve purchased for particular recipes, as well as figure out things that I need for the new Mediterranean form of cooking I’m starting. I’m hoping that this project will wrap up today. I’m loving the clean smell as I enter the pantry now.

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Getting a Handle on It


Yesterday I finally made some progress in ‘getting a handle on’ how I can make the Mediterranean eating plan work for us. (This is complicated because my husband rarely meets a veggie he likes or will even consider eating.)

Yesterday we had a huge fight-with-technology trying to get a Mediterranean cookbook downloaded onto my Kindle. I hardly ever use it, preferring to hold real, treasured books in my hands, but cookbooks are a different ilk, as far as I’m concerned. There are usually only a few recipes I’ll actually cook in each, so I can download a cook book, use what I like, then decide if I actually want to add it to my collection or delete the book from my Kindle and try another.

Making a long story much shorter, we had to DE-register my Kindle because it was listed under my old email address, then RE-register it under my current email address. THEN call for technical help on getting ads off, THEN fight to get rid of ‘freebies’ I didn’t want. I was able to finally get the cookbook and read it last night. As usual, it focused on eggplant, kale, couscous, tofu, Brussells sprouts, cauliflower, chickpeas, etc. Even after more than 50 years of marriage, I know my husband would leave if I tried to cook these things for dinner.

I thought about it a lot, and finally came up with ‘doing my own thing,’ incorporating as many veggies as possible, concentrating on those to which my husband doesn’t object, and flavoring with meats he likes. That means veggie casseroles with chicken or beef or pork ‘flavoring.’ It also can mean stews of various kinds. And fruit as part of our meals and as snacks.

If I cook these, making enough for more than one meal and freezing the leftovers into individual servings for the freezer, I can have lots of meals both of us like, increasing the veggies and fruit I want in my diet and not causing a revolt-among-the-masses. I can also try the recipes that sound reasonable. If my husband doesn’t care for them, I can freeze any leftovers for ME to eat later when my husband is having a Lean Cuisine, Real Food, or Stu’s frozen meal on busy days. Not a complete plan, by any means, but a workable start.

I’m feeling better every day now, with my digestion getting back to normal. I’m now taking my thyroid medicine first thing, eating a small breakfast an hour or so later, then taking the rest of my meds with lunch. This is workable for me. :0)

It’s still rainy here, so the guy bringing us a truckload of chat for the driveway hasn’t called or come. Neither has the plumber, whose work will be outside in the well house. If we can go to town between showers, we’ll get another timer to join the one we just installed in the well house, to be ready when the plumber does his thing.

Meanwhile, my husband actually NOTICED that I had been working in the pantry yesterday! I’m making my way through the food side of the pantry, getting rid of a lot of stuff, cleaning, and then re-organizing. I may finish the main part by the end of the day today. It feels good to be getting things easily accessible, plus smelling the ‘clean.’

If it ever stops raining, I’ll need to get out to my tomato plants and my garden to catch up there…

I hope you’re having a wonderful Wednesday.

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Pantry –

Yesterday was rainy, so I turned my attention to doing things INSIDE.


I vacuumed a dog-and-a-half’s worth of hair from the combination of the first floor tiled areas (pantry, kitchen, dining area, utility room, plus 2 half-baths) and the carpeted areas, (living room, foyer, and office.) I vacuum a lot, but am continually amazed that we have ANY dog left, or that she isn’t completely bald.

Then, since I couldn’t work outside, I cleaned and organized another small area in the pantry. I’m almost completely finished with the ‘supplies’ side of the pantry and am now working on the food side. I’ll try to get another area cleaned up today.

A terrific Tuesday to you! :0)

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Thoughts on a Friday 5-13-2022

Anne Jaravan Panhuis

Isn’t this photo wonderful? I love the look on the giraffe’s face as he (or she) stands with the bird (kingfisher?) sitting on his/her head. And the catching of the water (and the frog) are priceless.

We’ll leave in about 45 minutes to join our friends for Lunch Bunch. My friend Kay’s daughter from Albuquerque has been visiting, but she left yesterday. Kay is always a bit sad after her daughter leaves. I haven’t felt well enough to gather veggies from the garden, so won’t be taking anything to share today. Hopefully I can get out this weekend and make up for lost time.

My pantry project is about half done at this point. I’ll start the ‘food’ side of the pantry today and see what I can accomplish.

We’ve had record breaking heat this week. On the heels of this are thunderstorms with possibly severe weather this afternoon-into-this-evening. I hope we just get some good rain. I haven’t been able to set up our yard irrigation system yet this season, so things can really use a drink.

I’m feeling better and better. Soon I’ll be my regular, ornery self and can look for some mischief to dive into.

Enjoy a nice Friday.

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Pantry Progress

BEFORE– To say the pantry ‘needed work’ is a vast understatement. After the third day of working on it, light is beginning to show on the ‘supplies’ side of the pantry.

BEFORE-I’ve thrown away a bunch, relocated several things, then cleaned and re-arranged the rest. I’ve tried to get things we don’t need often up (or down), using the most accessible shelves for things we use all the time.

BEFORE-One thing about having a nice, walk-in ‘room’ for a pantry is that there is lots of room. The downside of that, though, is that we tend to ‘stash’, getting lazy and finally ending up with a mess.

Below I’ve got a couple of pics of improvements I’ve made so far. There are more things on the ‘food’ side of the pantry that need to be moved over here, but the big part of the reorganization is finished.

AFTER-My husband even said, “Wow.” I spread our meds out into categories, with clear labels and the current stuff we use all the time the most accessible.

AFTER– There will be tweaks needed, but I’m breathing a sigh of relief. I actually ‘found’ several things I didn’t know we had. :0)

I’ll try to start the ‘food’ side of the pantry tomorrow.

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It’s Wednesday


L. Roche Art-via Karen Miller -Pinterest- The Rose Gallery-“Happy Hoglet”

I hope that Wednesday is being good to you.

Ours is starting off quietly – a thing for which I am very grateful. My husband is still having technical issues with his Kindle going wonky. He is trying to find someone in support he can understand and who might be able to help him get it back on track. Otherwise, we’re waiting for a deposit to show up on a thing we sold so that we can box it up and get it shipped.

Yesterday I finally felt well enough to actually get started re-organizing the meds in our pantry – a project I told you about several days ago, but never actually did. I made a first pass and improved things a lot. We can now easily see what we have, things being divided into labeled trays and open boxes, such as, “cold and flu,” “digestion,” “current meds backup,” “pain,” “supplements”, etc.

Today I’ll continue making my way around the “supplies” half of the pantry, trying to figure out the best place for things, continuing to throw out and re-organize.

We went from “winter”-to-“wild-thunderstorms-spring”- to “full summer” in the space of several days. We’re still kind of in shock, amazed that we need to turn on our a/c. This is the quickest change I can remember. We just got our snow tires off and the regular tires on in the shop the other day! I’ll need to switch to being out either in the morning or late in the afternoon on working outside now. I would like to check on our veggie garden and our tomato plants very soon.

Today I’ll plan to do the 3 short exercise videos: ‘warm-up,’ ‘stretches,’ and one of two ‘weights’ videos from Mike at plus my yoga stretches this afternoon. I’m happy that I’m feeling well enough to PLAN for that today!

Make this a wonderful Wednesday.

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Thoughts at the Start of the Week

WOW! Last week I was still checking to see if we would have a freeze overnight and needed to cover up my plants. Today our high will be 90 degrees F. ! Mother Nature is anything but subtle. We ran the a/c last night for the first time. We woke up freezing early this morning and turned off the system and snuggled in while it warmed up. Now I’m turning on the ceiling fan here in the office. We have the doors open, but may need to close up and turn on the a/c downstairs this afternoon. Mother Nature’s middle name is ‘Abrupt.’

Spoon University

I’m inching toward my next incremental goal in weight loss. I’m trying to only look at 5 pounds at a time. That’s a “doable chunk” as my friend Maria encouraged me to do. It’s wise advise, particularly when the whole goal is super intimidating. Two more pounds and I can toast my efforts with a glass of water and a dance around the living room. :0)

I tried a new recipe for bread, sent to me by my friend, Susy. It’s called, “Bagels with Fathead Dough (Keto and Gluten-Free) by Maya at My friend Susy said she baked them as ‘rolls’ rather than bagels, and I did the same, doubling the recipe. Maya made this quite simple. I just changed ‘6’ to ’12’ and the quantities of the ingredients magically changed on the recipe page. NICE! I found them quite interesting. Nice and chewy, satisfying to eat. I sliced one in half, eating the half, rather than the whole thing last night, cutting down on the number of carbs to stay under my limit. I’m a happy camper.

I have a complication on eating keto. I had to have my gallbladder removed several years ago and that changes digestion. Thankfully, the keto people are addressing this issue, so I’m working now to follow their suggestions, hoping they work for me.

We have no exciting plans for the day. I’m still working on re-organizing our medicines in the panty.

I hope this is a safe, happy day for you.

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New Project

We had this house built 35 years ago, in 1987. One of the prime things we wanted was lots of space for storage because we had never had even close to enough. We modified the house plans so we could include a ROOM for our pantry right off the kitchen.

Since our home is on top of a ridge line, with a long, steep driveway on the north side of the property outside of the city limits, we wanted to keep stocked up so we wouldn’t be in too much of a mess if we got stuck up here due to bad weather.

One year we had a particularly bad ice storm followed by a lot of snow. We were stuck up here for some 12 days or so, with no public power and no public water. We switched to well water and used a China Diesel generator for a small amount of power. We have a wood-burning fireplace for back up heat. We have a propane-powered stove so we can cook even without power.

Over the years we have refined this, but still don’t like being stuck up here, not able to get down our driveway, having to use a chainsaw to ‘cut our way’ down to the street.

My new project is to try to reorganize the ‘stuff’ in the pantry so things are more easily accessible. I’m going to do this a bit at a time, because looking at the whole is intimidating. I’m going to start with our medicine/supplements area first and see what sense I can make of that. This will be a multi-part reorganization/cleaning/de-cluttering project.

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Thoughts on a Friday 4-2022

Schulz – Peanuts

We have been very happy this month that we live on top of a ridge line in Arkansas. Being up a bit has its own dangers – lightning and gusty winds and tornadoes being some – but we DON’T have to worry personally about flooding, though we HAVE discussed tying a rowboat at the bottom of our driveway in case we need to get to town at times. We’ve had a LOT of rain this month. May might bring dryer weather, but it won’t bring calmer weather. We’re under a tornado ‘watch’ much of the summer. We’ve gotten to the point where we don’t really pay attention unless the weather alert says, “A tornado is on the ground in Greenwood, headed for the Lewis’ house.” I’ll be happy to wave goodbye to April tomorrow.

Good/Bad – GOOD: We saw our second hummingbird of the season this morning! We’re not sure if it’s the same hummingbird we saw yesterday or a different one, but he/she took a good, long drink before flitting away. BAD: It looks like we might have another raccoon. The feeders were all absolutely empty this morning after my husband filled them up yesterday. The suet holder on one end of one of the feeders was pulled out on one side. We have yet to see a bird who pulls out the side of the suet holder to get at the suet. We had a suet holder down on the ground below the deck… We’ll have to set the humane trap and see if we can catch the critter for relocation.

CLEANING: I was planning to tackle cleaning up our porch as my next project, but I think I’ll postpone that, since the weather forecast for the next few days is really gusty winds and chances of rain and severe storms.

Instead, I think I’ll work on our pantry. It’s gotten out of hand over the past couple of months, since there wasn’t a good place to put extra supplies and things tended to get ‘stuffed’ wherever it was out of the way a bit. This will be a several day project, but it’s overdue and I don’t have to get the cooperation of Mother Nature to do it.

FRIENDS: Today is Lunch Bunch. In fact, we leave in about 45 minutes to meet our friends. I think that Kay’s daughter will be here, visiting from Albuquerque. She’s a wonderful person and I really enjoy it when she comes home to her parents. :0) Catching up on Fridays rounds the week off nicely.

Have a fabulous Friday.

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The Good News Is

I found the counter in my part of the garage, putting as many soft drinks and bottles of water into the fridge as possible, throwing stuff away, and consolidating. You can actually see there is a counter there now. I will do more at a later date, but the main focus today was finding the garden irrigation system timer.

The good news is that my area is much cleaner now.

The bad news is that the timer is still missing. I have no clue what I did with it. It isn’t in any reasonable place. I’ve even looked in some UNreasonable places…

So – we’ll have some lunch, I’ll rest a bit from all the pulling, hauling, and cleaning, and then we’ll go to Yeager’s and see if we can buy another timer.

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The biggest thing that doesn’t show is that the things IN the desk have been reorganized. I deleted, changed, and added files that will save me work at the end of the year when I have to organize things to give to our CPA for taxes. Other things were moved to my art room upstairs, to shelves in the office, etc.

I have to admit that the only time my desk looks this clear is when I’m not doing anything. :0)

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 2-16-2022

Petr Vaclavek –

We have some interesting weather here in Arkansas the next couple of days. We have a ‘wind advisory’ today – even warning about being watchful of gusts when driving! THEN we have ‘heavy downpours,’ ‘thunderstorms,’ and possible severe storms late this afternoon and overnight, a cold front moving in tomorrow, with possible FLURRIES (It’ll be in the 60’s today…). It’s ‘hold-onto-your-hat weather!

I MAY finish the infamous ‘Find-My-Desk’ project today. My husband mentioned that he saw there was a piece of furniture under the piles yesterday, but then his intelligence kicked in and he wisely shut his mouth rather than adding to his observations. :0)


My simultaneous ‘Shut-My-Mouth-and-do-More-Yoga’ project has a good start now, though the results may not show for quite awhile.

A third project I’m beginning to think about is my Raised-bed, Square-foot Garden project for the spring. I’m getting out my grid paper and will start to plan what I’ll plant and where I’ll put it in the garden. This is all based on where I put things last year, so I’ll have reasonable crop rotation, and then I want to have a ‘square’ between like plants (like I don’t plant broccoli plants in adjoining squares) so cut down on any disease problems. I use up lots of grid paper as I dream, making notes on when I should start looking for plants in our local stores. I want to be ready to plant broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, and spinach, for example, as soon as I can get them into the ground. I’ll group them so I can cover them each night with tarps until the weather is more cooperative, making their growing season as long as possible.

As soon as I finish at the computer, I’ll get to work on my desk again. I’ll post pics when this project is done. Have a wonderful Wednesday!

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Hopeful Tuesday

I just came back in from driving our trash down to the bottom of our driveway and getting our mail. When I started to go down the driveway I caught a glimpse of yellow out of the corner of my eye. When I got back, I got my camera and went out in the yard to find two groups of daffodils budding and blooming in the middle of February! Talk about something that really lifted my spirits. I wanted to share them with you. I KNOW that they don’t realize that it’s still the middle of winter here and that they’ll get frozen one day soon, but their determination to bloom in the middle of whatever is happening around them is motivation for me to try to do the same.

My “Find-and-Re-Organize My Desk” project is going slowly, but I’m definitely making progress. Instead of just stuffing things away somewhere else this time, I’m really trying to re-think where it makes the most sense for things to live – rather than piled on my desk. This takes more time, but will be helpful in the long run. I’ve already cleaned out my tax records file drawer in the desk, caught up with January 2022 records on new spreadsheets on my computer, and filed January’s stuff in old-plus-added folders. It won’t look like I’ve done anything on the project until it’s finished, but I’m plugging away at it with several sessions during the day, with walking out to the shop and back between sessions to enjoy the weather and get my body moving more.


I actually did a session of yoga yesterday afternoon. It felt so good I’m going to do another today, rather than waiting until Wednesday.

I hope that you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day yesterday and that you’re having a hopeful Tuesday, too.

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Back on the Wagon


Okay. The Super Bowl is over. I love it that they were so evenly matched. I was happy the Rams won because they won it the same way they got to the Super Bowl in the final game that won their place there – a come from behind win. I switched allegiances several times during the game because I love a really close, nail-biter game more than anything. (My husband is still rolling his eyes because I liked the uniforms of the Bengals MUCH better than those of the Rams.)

We enjoyed our splurge dinner of chili mac with onions and cheese, thoroughly enjoying every forbidden bite. :0) Splurge mode is officially over now. I’m using to track my eating. I’m still trying to work out how to eat the foods that are supposed to be good for my husband’s and my various health concerns – building a master list of foods to INCLUDE as often as possible and ones to AVOID. I’m adding to it as I read more and reprinting the list so I can keep it on the fridge to remind me.

I have a yoga session on my calendar for today. I’m also going to include a walk out to our shop and back each time I take a break from my ‘find-my-desk’ project started yesterday and continuing until the emergence of an actual piece of furniture, rather than a pile of STUFF.

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Today’s Project 2-13-2022

I will at least get a start on unearthing my office desk today. The poor thing is buried with the residue from several projects. Some have been going on simultaneously, but some of this STUFF is from projects that have been finished for awhile. It’s now to the point where I can’t find anything, or if I do and try to pick it up, things fall. UGH.

It’s a very good thing my husband didn’t marry me for my housekeeping skills. He is wonderful, in that he doesn’t seem to notice when things get awful, like my desk, but DOES notice it if it’s suddenly clean. That a wonderful survival skill for him – since he isn’t great about cleaning, or helping to clean…

This will probably be a several-day project, particularly since the Super Bowl is this evening. I will work on it a bit at a time. Eventually I will find the furniture under the pile.

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Thoughts on a Saturday 2-12-2022

Ooh! It’s pretty cold here in Arkansas today. It’s 24 degrees F. with a wind chill making it FEEL like 13. BRRRR! The sun is shining, though, and this is a one-day thing. Warmer tomorrow. :0)


I’m doing really well with my getting our tax stuff organized in the office efforts. I’m waiting for our investment stuff to be available for download and print. Then we can bag everything up for taxes and dump it on our wonderful CPA.

I made new spreadsheets for 2022 and will enter January’s information into them today. Then file that stuff, having decided to refine my filing system for less sorting at the end of the year. I’ll make the extra folders today, plus reconciling checkbooks.

Once that is done, the next step will be to find my desk again. The poor thing is buried alive with STUFF. You can see there is ‘something’ in that part of the room, but it’s not clear it’s a desk. LOTS of things to put away from lots of projects…


I’ve figured out a NICE way to tackle this stuff. I listen to music, write blog posts, then tackle whatever the project is. Work for awhile, get to a good stopping point, take a break and listen and type again. This way I get something good accomplished with some good enjoyment keeping my energy up.


2022 will be a good year for me to get serious about getting rid of more stuff. Seriously. I hit some roadblocks in 2021 on this, with our library not accepting used books and our wonderful Veterans Thrift Town not accepting donations. I will call both first to see if that has changed and then plan accordingly. If they are not accepting donations, I’ll have to find other organizations to get things to people who might be able to use them. Maybe our churches.

I hope you’re having a happy Saturday, too.

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Patting Myself on the Head

I’m patting myself on the head a bit right now. I’ve been trying to get up to my art room for a week or more to clean up a bit and clear the decks to try the impasto painting technique. Excuses abound, as usual, but the fact remains I’m lazy. I’ve been enjoying lots of other things and just haven’t made the time.

This afternoon I finally went up there. I wrapped the Christmas presents I’ve made for friends, still sitting on the table where I brought them in from the shop. So now they are on another table, ready to go out the door when it’s time. :0)

I cleared off the drafting table so I have room to try the new technique. Right now it’s clean and clear. I’ll leave it that way until tomorrow, when I’ll gather the things I need to try the technique. I’m really looking forward to giving myself time to experiment and play, not worried about whether it will ‘turn out okay’ or not – just enjoying.

I hope that you found something satisfying to do today, too. If so, pat yourself on the head and enjoy some good relaxing. If not, give yourself a break and find something fun. It’s not too late :0)


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Sing It!

It’s quite cool right now – 46 degrees F. and sunny here. It’s due to get to 74 this afternoon, so no complaints whatsoever from me. :0)

I’m pleased that the “ugly” Wonder Wart-Hog is up on the mailbox now, ready for the school kids to see it as they pass the bottom of the driveway on the bus tomorrow morning. I wonder if they’ll like it. My husband seems pleased with it, so that’s the most important.

Since I’m split between “should clean up my art room” and “should do some clean up in the yard,” I’ll try to devote half my day to each of those.

My art room is still a mess from the last ‘acrylic pour’ attempts (no success there yet), so I’d like to get it cleaned up and try to do one of the ‘impasto’ technique paintings with a pallet knife.

I’m trying to do a bit outside each time the weather is cooperative to get us ready for the winter.

Such a beautiful day! Enjoy your Sunday.

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A. A. Milne – E. H. Shepard – Winnie the Pooh –

Yesterday I started trying to once again clean up my art room. A lofty goal, and one that I occasionally actually DO. More often, I START – find something wonderful – and then spend the rest of the allotted time playing. :0)

We converted a third bedroom into my art room years ago. My husband built shelves that go all the way across one end of the room for supplies. On the other end of the room, he built more shelves. On the window side I have two tall sets of shelves…

Then there is the closet which has built-in shelves on one side and a plastic set of shelves on the opposite side.

I have two counters, one long table, and my drafting table.

My art room is a place that allows me escape. Alone time. Time to nurture, to dream, to experiment, to play.

Right now I have to tell you that it looks like a bomb hit. I am working to at least be able to walk through without falling over something or having to move a bunch of stuff.

I’ll do a bit more in there today. Maybe I’ll actually get something cleaned off!


Filed under fun in my art room, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob, Organizing/DeCluttering

Thoughts on a Monday 5-10-2021

Lydie Steyer

I’m finding it hard to grasp that we’re already into May, and a third of it is gone!

Arkansas is having a ‘monsoon’ season this year. I’m growing some veggies in a raised bed square foot garden and they are loving this weather. It’s been cool and wet. For example it’s overcast, looking like it could rain any second, and is only 49 degrees right now. Friday I was able to share some spinach and lettuce with good friends. I’m planning to do my third harvest of the season today, if the weather will cooperate.


Yesterday, after over a year of absence, I started accounts on Facebook and LinkedIn again. My accounts had been hacked and I couldn’t change my passwords or get any help from support at either place, so I gave up and closed my accounts. I missed some of the people I had met, so yesterday I created a new email address so I could sign up again. I have no idea of anyone remembers me anymore or will connect with me again, but I figure it’s worth a try.

My latest project – after putting the house back together after new carpet and porch flooring – is to switch my winter clothes for summer ones. Funny timing, since we may be setting a record for the coolest May we’ve had since I’ve lived here, but I’m in the middle of it now. I have the actual clothes switched. Now I’m trying to get things organized, plus I’ve promised myself I will try things on, going through for things I can donate.

We are continuing to enjoy getting healthy, individual portion meals from Real Food and from Stu’s Clean Cookin’, both of which have opened in the past year in Greenwood.

Calvin & Hobbes Mailbox Decoration

We haven’t been putting up mailbox decorations for awhile, due to the chaos in the world. We finally put up my favorite recently. I think we can all use a hug.

I hope that you are having a good start of a new week, too.

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It’s Monday


I’m waiting for my coffee to kick in. It’s overcast and rainy-looking. Severe storms are forecast for this evening, so I’ll need to get out to my garden and do a second harvest in case we get the hail they say we might.

I’m also going to try to finish getting things put back where they belong after our new carpet and flooring project. Even though I’m sleepy, I’m smiling every time I see the carpet and walk on it. It’s nice. And new, And clean. I also love the way the porch floor looks like weathered wood. I have my side of our entertainment center in the living room to straighten out and then things will be done. Hooray!

The garden was looking strong and healthy the last time I checked. I’ll try to share some pictures with you. I have all appendages crossed the the storms this evening won’t break the plants. One year we had bad hail that battered things so much I had to cut everything WAY back. Then the weather turned really warm and the early spring plants gave up the ghost.

If you’re feeling sleepy too, I hope we can both wake up and enjoy the day.

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Almost Finished!


I’m getting ready to do some serious relaxing.

I finally finished getting our office back together after the carpet installation. I went through everything, trying to make it easy to find things. My husband will let me know if I was successful the next time he wants a new highlighter or something. Fingers crossed.

This is the main area in question. If he wants dividers for a notebook or tabs to go inside them, or whatever. I’m hoping he can simply go look for a couple of seconds and see that all the stuff for notebooks, dividers, and files are together on one shelf. Same for pens, pencils, tape of all kinds. etc. We’ll see. You can see that Amber is worn out after helping me organize.

My desk is newly cleaned.

These are things listed on Amazon – used books, and then my Amazon Handmade stuff.

This is the way the office looks as you look in from the foyer.

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Signs of Wisdom

Our new carpet and porch vinyl installation was finished up by Friday mid afternoon. Aside from walking around smiling, we’ve been trying to get things put back where they belong. We had to empty out all the furniture, filing cabinets, etc. to do the install, and all that STUFF had to go SOMEWHERE. That ended up being EVERYWHERE – living room entertainment shelves, dining area floor, garage, my art room and the guest room upstairs, etc.

Friday I concentrated on making sure that we could make our way around the house without falling over anything – clear paths, places to sit down, place to eat, etc. My husband very kindly got my computer working again so I could work on getting over my computer withdrawal. :0) I also brought the drawers to my desk down from the guest room upstairs. There are 15 drawers in my old style roll top desk, so I made a lot of trips up and down stairs – good exercise, but a bit hard on this old woman.

Yesterday we moved all the files back into the office. We have two 4-drawers file cabinets and one 2-drawer cabinet. We got most of them back in. I’m working on one drawer today that was filled with OTHER STUFF – trying to go through it and get it better organized, and give away or throw away things.

Today I’m also concentrating on getting our supplies shelves fixed. Right now, the entertainment shelves in the living room are jam-packed with things from the office. I’m going to try to go slowly here, again trying to get rid of some things, but mainly to organize them so that my husband can find things. He has a harder time as the years pass, so I’m trying to look through things with an eye to where would be the easiest, most straight-forward place to store whatever supply it is – pens, rubber bands, tape, staples, etc. so he can walk up to the shelves and pick it out right away – or at least, that’s the plan. I’ll take my time.

We’re supposed to get rain today with more tomorrow, so yesterday I also took the time to check on my garden a bit. I planted some elephant ear bulbs I received in the mail. I may harvest a bit from the veggie garden this afternoon in case the weather people are correct. That will give me some good breaks from the reorganization of the office.

Have a great Sunday!

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Yeah, You Wish!

My body is letting me know that today might be a ‘take it easier’ day. Yesterday my husband and I did some cleaning out of our shop.

It was half as large as it is now when we first had it built. Now it’s 64’x24′. It’s a wonderful place. We have been able to set up some ‘work stations’ in there, so we don’t have to move so many things when we’re working on our projects.

It’s also large enough that we can be kind of sloppy about how much we keep out there. My husband started the clean out yesterday. Then he came and got me because about 25% of the shop is ‘mine.’ We cleaned out a whole lot of ‘stuff’ that should have been thrown out a long time ago. My husband burned it in our burn barrel, so now it looks like someone might care about the building – hence, my body complaining. :0)

Several of the yard critters we have made over the years are badly in need of a spruce up. Sun, wind, rain, and temperature changes are really hard on things that are outside. (We discovered that most recently when one of the shutters on the front of the house simple fell off the screws and anchors attaching it to the brick and shattered on the rocks below.)

I have cleared my work table now and will work on a critter we call a “box turtle” first.

This is when he was freshly painted, several years ago. Now he is in MUCH need of a thorough washing and extensive repainting. I’ll work on him as I can, and then put him back out in the yard, bringing in another critter to refurbish, working my way around the yard.

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Filed under aging, Arkansas, Lewis Art, Lewis yard art, Organizing/DeCluttering

As Good as it Gets

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Thoughts on a Friday in February


It’s harder to stick with a rational, mature eating plan when the weather is yelling for comfort food. It’s 17 degrees F here in Greenwood, Arkansas. February is always our coldest month, but I was beginning to believe we wouldn’t have much of a winter this year. Hahahahahahhaha! Our highs are in the 20s, we have ice everywhere, our deck is a skating rink unfit for old folks to fill the bird feeders, and our 650+ foot long, STEEP driveway and the road that runs in front of our place are not encouraging travel – even to retrieve our mail at the bottom of the driveway. The forecast is for ‘dangerous cold, and snow Sat – Monday, then again Wednesday of next week. Did I tell you I HATE February?


I’m trying to be the “mature adult woman” that I’m supposed to be, NOT stuffing my face while continuing to earn my gold stars on my desk calendar for exercise. I put on my sweatshirt, sweat pants, puffy vest, knit hat, and gloves to go out to the garage to put in my time on my elliptical trainer. The good thing is I feel very proud of myself if I manage to get my time in out there each day. The yoga in the afternoons is easier.

Yesterday I finally got the seeds planted for my spring garden. The seed starter tray is sitting on our dining area table where the seeds will get the best sun. I’m watching the tray like a mother hen, hoping my seeds will sprout and then do really well so that I’ll have healthy, good-looking plants to put into my raised bed square foot garden the first week of April.

I am planning to continue my efforts to clean and reorganize my art room today. So far, the only clean area is my drafting table. Today I’ll tackle this table.

I hope you’re having a good Friday. Maybe we can start a petition to do away with February…

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Filed under Challenges, DIET!, exercise, Gardening, Mother Nature, Organizing/DeCluttering, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds

Some Progress, More Coming

Drafting Table When I’m Working – 1
Drafting Table When I’m Working – 2

When ideas are coming fast and furious, rattling around in my poor brain until I’m dreaming of them, it’s a relief – and so much fun! – to spend time zipping from one idea and medium to the next, shoving things out of the way enough that I can keep playing.

Every once in a while, though, the adult emerges and looks – appalled – at the mess I’ve created once again. The stern taskmaster says that I MUST clean things up before starting anything else.

I went upstairs several days ago. intending to at least START with the tractor in there, but got some ideas for new magnets and I simply gave in to the need to play. I had a GREAT time, got the magnets finished, priced them yesterday and put them into the basket I take back and forth to my local booth in town.

I then listened to the taskmaster and decided to at LEAST get the drafting table cleared off.

Drafting Table Cleaned Off – 1
Drafting Table Cleaned Off – 2

My plan is to continue my cleaning efforts up there today. at LEAST getting another table cleaned off.

Happy Tuesday!

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Cleaning my Art Room?

Two days ago I went to my art room full of good intentions to clean things up and organize. I’ve been reasonably productive lately, so things are really a mess. :0)

I started with my drafting table because that’s where I do most of my work. As I cleaned it off, I got some ideas for new magnets to make for sale in my booth in Rags & Roses. The cleaning stopped as I started gathering the things I wanted…

Raising Children Network

Today I will go up and see if I can actually finish cleaning off the drafting table, as well as tackling more of the art room…

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Art Room Honesty

Full disclosure – if you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you already KNOW what a slob I am, and along with that, a lousy housekeeper. I decided that my current project will be cleaning up my art room – AGAIN.

The only time my art room is clean is when I’m not in there and have no current art projects going on. I have some images I took for my shops on Etsy, and they look really good. But nothing is happening in those images. :0)

I started cleaning in here this afternoon. I decided to start with my drafting table. I made a bit of progress, but then got caught up in a new idea for painted magnets. I started rummaging around, gathering things to try my new idea.

Under here is a drafting table, believe it or not.

And under here is a nice work table.

My art room has actually looked worse before. Sometimes it’s a challenge to walk from the door to the drafting table. :0)

Tomorrow I’ll show you more of the cleaning project, plus progress on the new magnets!

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Pat, Pat, Pat

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Yesterday I truly earned a pat on the head.

THING ONE: I FINISHED my part of our 2020 tax prep. It is in an envelope waiting for some investment statements to be available online and printed, then it will be taken and dumped, with relief, on our CPA for processing.

As a part of this, I started spreadsheets for 2021, made some improvements to my filing system, and threw some stuff away. I also discovered that there was, indeed, a DESK in my office, under the huge pile of STUFF.

Note: The big white envelope on the right side of the desk is the tax stuff that is almost ready to go!

THING TWO: I finally went through the big laundry basket I use to haul things back and forth to the booth my friend Carla and I share at Rags & Roses Collective in Greenwood. It was an absolute mess, full of packing materials, display supplies I can never quite put my hands on when I’m trying to put new things in the booth, products I had brought home, products that needed to be put in the booth when there is room, etc.

The thing remaining is the counter area where my computer is. I’ll clean that up today and then celebrate by giving myself some time to play in my art room this afternoon.

Every once in a while, I do something GOOD! :0)

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