Friday, July 13, 2018

Sentimental Journey: What To Pass, What To Keep When You Declutter

As you might have read already, I have begun to declutter my kitchen and living room areas as a ride-along with my husband's doing some painting in those rooms.  What to do, what to do-- I actually need to let go of items that were given to me, or harder yet, bequeathed to me, by people dear to me.  And the odd memento of some place and time that I will never more visit.  Dishes, mostly.  Please let me know what you think in the Comments below.  Would you give away something your |Grandmother gave you as a gift?  Would you give away a piece of bone china that you never use, that is missing a lid, but that is your all-time favourite Royal Albert pattern, and belonged to your Mom?



The first article of some sentimental value is a pinwheel crystal pilsner glass.  Pilsner is a kind of brew for a beer.  It is a fancy beer glass. 

 There were six of them at one time, wedding gifts from an auntie. There are three remaining (not bad in our house for something that landed here forty-eight years ago).  We do not drink beer any more. 

 It is too long to re-purpose as a dessert glass, and doesn't work extremely well as a vase either, although that is a possibility.  

What do you think?

Keep for sentiment's sake?

Give away?

If you are family, do you want it?

Any other ideas?




This is the bone china coffee pot that belonged to my mom.  It is Royal Albert "Silver Birch" pattern, which I like very much, but it is a knock-off of the regular coffee pot from the 1940s, and not quite as grand.  I can't find a lid online but I see that the tea pot lid is replaceable for $50 on Ebay. $50!

We don't drink coffee.  Does anyone serve their guests coffee in these pots any more? (I mean, besides at Church 'teas'-- do they even have church teas any more?)

Some arty folks would use this as a flower pot I suppose.  Is it worth it to advertise it on EBay and then wait six months for someone to buy it for $30?  If you are family, do you want it?  There are some cups, saucers and a cream/sugar that go with it.  Any other ideas?



 A china tea mug that my Grandmother gave to me one time when we lived in Saskatchewan and visited her in Vancouver.  Grandma was very precious to me.  However, I haven't seen this mug for the past six years, and so it is safe to say that it doesn't evoke any real feelings.  Family want it?
 A gift mug from a client who went to Hawaii.  It is always nice to see these sorts of little "appreciate-you" mementos, but the fact is that it sits up in the top cupboard unused and un-heralded.  I need the space.  The ex-client is now on my Facebook and we appreciate each other.  I don't think this gets kept.  hehe.
 A going-away gift I received from the Saskatoon women's shelter that I worked at for a few years, many years ago.  I just now took it out of the plastic bag it had lived in.  It is a very nice mug.  But Interval House has a website if I need to remember my times there.  Does anyone out there want this mug?  I would happily send it to you for the cost of shipping.

This is not exactly 'mine' to give away since it is a souvenir Ed brought back from his trip to Europe.  Like his 43 tee-shirts, it will likely live here as long as we do, but I will move it into his man cave out of the kitchen.  Phil, do you want this?  You were on the same trip as your Dad.

I don't think I will be going through all the minutia (nice word for 'junk') on this page, but you never know.  I know that some of you are organizational whizzes and I truly appreciate your ideas, offers, comments, and suggestions below.  Not just for these particular items, but for how to declutter in general-- what has worked for you?  Thank you!

If this interested you, you might want to read the previous post called Organic Granny Declutters-Simplifies-Minimizes 

For Family (Zirkwitz-Ritter-Rempel-Sanders) I plan to transfer our Genealogy information to this blog.  For the granddaughters and sons, we plan to write a little more about our life experiences.  All to come.  In the meantime, here are a couple of articles that you might want to read about our life long ago and far away:

Our Experiences of Being Contestants on a TV Quiz Show (1970s- Vancouver)

Food Trends Through My Life (1950- 2000s)

Some Things To Do With Grandkids in Edmonton (including photos of grandkids)

Read Me A Story: How Being Read Aloud To Shaped My Life (more grandkid pictures)

A Prairie Gal's Walk On Vancouver Island

Taking a Trip Back in Time With Pinterest (some family photos)

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Organic Granny Declutters-Simplifies-Minimizes

Some of the Clutter from my Cupboards

WHY DECLUTTER?

My husband moved here about 13 years ago this coming Fall.  We managed everything we packed up in the space of a cube van-- by selling and giving away anything that wasn't positively necessary (or that to replace at that time would be too expensive) or that had deep sentimental value (hmmm).  In the 13 years since it is evident that if we had any "policy" in our home about not accumulating (okay, hoarding) it must have gone out the window quite quickly after we arrived here.

And we have precious grandkids-- who live afar-- which is meant to excuse the fact that we have raided the thrifts shops, Walmart, and Dollarama for stuff they 'collect', things they need need need (like water safety devices-- we don't have a boat but we do live near the Ocean), etc., for their time here.  I also had quite a respectable doll collection from forays onto EBay back in the day when I was addicted to doing that.  Some of the dolls have made their way to their "real" home, but there are still a wall-full upstairs.  And so it goes.

But the real reason is that I am feeling old and over-burdened with all this "stuff" that doesn't get used but that seems to have rented space in my head as well as taking up considerable space in cupboards and closets and drawers and on shelves throughout the house.  And because when we moved in here we felt that we were here for quite a while, and that feeling has changed with the comings and goings of new neighbours, I absolutely cringe at the idea of having to do a huge sort, pack, give away, and move with a deadline, when the time to move actually arrives.

And... it would be nice to live in a home that was not cluttered.  I vision that we will feel more relaxed, that it will be easier to have a clean-up schedule that doesn't involve feeling discouraged about all the niches and crannies and spider webs that must be cleaned up, and all the stuff that doesn't get done because of overwhelm (and because there are things I prefer doing, that win out-- I confess).  I imagine there will still be spider webs, but you know...

WHY DECLUTTER NOW?

We are a couple with a spontaneous work schedule.   Mowing gets done when it looks like it might rain, meals get made when people arrive looking hungry, and arts and decoration projects often languish in boxes somewhere until they are either forever forgotten, or pulled out during an overhaul of whatever room the boxes live in.  Recently I have gotten into my head that the downstairs ceilings must be painted.  Knowing what a messy job that is sure to be, it seemed to be a good time to pull apart all the cupboards and begin the de-clutter process as described in an article I recently read.

  1. Remove all items from one room to another room so that the room to be decluttered is totally empty.
  2. Sit on the situation for a few days or a week.  Don't make any rash decisions about what must go and what must stay.
  3. After the week or so, begin to bring in the items that you definitely want in your space.
  4. Sell, give away, or throw out all other items that you decide are not necessary to your life and new peaceful outlook.
So, I am clearing out my cupboards in the kitchen, removing stuff from walls, shelves, drawers, counters.  I am about half-way finished and the small room I am using to collect the  detritus stuff.

Stay tuned if you are curious how this all works out.




Friday, June 29, 2018

5 Ways Sweet Ways To Show Off Your Daylilies

I have a couple of great pops of day lilies in my yard.  Daylilies are so called because they have a bright surprise bloom that generally doesn't last more than a day or so.  They bloom in mid-late June (Vancouver Island) and provide lots of colorful blooms for cutting and showing off.

Here are some lovely arrangements that you can use to showcase your Daylilies:


  1. Daisies and Daylilies
GardenOrg
A fresh, cheerful bouquet.  Daisies and daylilies bloom about the same time.  

     2. California Sunshine
Canada Floral


This is an Asiatic Lily mix called "California Sunshine."  You can have the same bright dramatic effect by putting together daylilies with these alluringly sunny color contrasts.  Put it somewhere that needs a big pop of bright cheerful sunshine to bring it alive!

    3. 180- Degree Vista
Chester Garden Club
This gorgeous peachy arrangement is a little different to what we are used to, on its side like a lush exotic flower salad.  Have fun with the variety of leaves.  The large soft hosta leaves along the back really draw the eye after the lilies on their soft lettuce-like leaf bed.  Note the seed stems for some extra interest and texture!  Have fun! 


Perhaps you have always wanted to take a floral design course so that you could put together beautiful arrangements like the ones here?  See what you can learn online for a small fraction of what it would cost to take it outside your home. Learn to create whimsical designs suited to your flowers, the occasion, and where the flowers will be presented.  Click HERE for more information.

   4. Daylilies-Roses-Succulents Burst
Korori Flower Shop
This Daylily bouquet includes succulents and tea roses.  Exotic and romantic, a super centerpiece for a wedding anniversary dinner!

     5.  Theatrical Display of Daylilies
Golden B Designs
And talking about dramatic... this explosive arrangement was put together for the Norris Theatre, Rolling Hills Estates, California.  The bright yellow and red Daylilies are teamed up with Bird of Paradise, Anthurium and sprays of Red Ginger. No shortage of Divas here..

If you have it in you to want to put together such a whimsical flower design using market or home-grown flowers, you can learn the basics online with Udemy.  Go here to get the information and to register.

You might also be interested in knowing about:

7 Things You Can Do With Rosemary

7 Things You Can Do With  Oregano Flowers

Monday, April 9, 2018

Ketoflex Recipe: Kelp Noodles with Chop Suey and Peanut-Miso Sauce

This is a yummy "Chinese Food" version of Ketoflex meal (vegan ketogenic).  I use cooked vegetables in this recipe, but you could go ahead and make a nice cold salad to have a complete "raw vegan" (or close to) Ketoflex meal.




INGREDIENTS:

  • Mineral Rich Kelp Noodles (see picture below)
  • 1 Medium Onion, sliced or diced
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 Large Carrot, sliced into coins
  • 2 Cups of Green Beans, chopped
  • (Add in or substitute other low-glycemic vegetables of your choice)
  • 1 T. Coconut Oil
  • 1 T. Miso Paste
  • 3 T. Peanut Butter
  • Dash of Umeboshi (Japanese Plum) or Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/8 tsp. Stevia powder
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste (optional)


METHOD:
  1. Heat Coconut Oil in Dutch Oven.  Stir fry Onion, Garlic, Carrot and Green Beans until cooked to taste.
  2. Mix Miso Paste and Peanut Butter until well mixed.  Add in dash of Vinegar and Stevia.  Combine well.
  3. When ready to serve, add in Kelp noodles and stir with vegetables until the noodles are softened up.
  4. Stir in Peanut-Miso Sauce.
  5. Add Salt and Pepper to taste and serve.