Tackling the Toy Room

So there’s that room. Yes, that one. That one everything gets dumped in.

So yesterday was the day I took it back. It’s our school/play room. It’s not that glamorous, really. It’s a small and a bit overstuffed…still.

This corner looks good…haha

It took me all day and that is why I’ve put it off this long. We tackled the junk sitting everywhere and decluttered the obvious stuff. We rearranged and changed some things around. It’s clean and functional as a room now…haha, but it’s not finished yet. The next layer will be sorting through all the books and toys and hopefully letting go of some of that.

Last night my little kiddo used it as a movie theater (movie with lights off), played restaurant and today using it for doing her school work. She is all excited which is cute. And motivates me to really keep this space up and make it even better for her.

It feels so much better to have it done.

What’s that space in your house that needs help?

love the home you have

house love

Synonyms for passion: affection, attachment, devotedness, devotion, fondness, love

I just had to think about what I really enjoy doing. I was watching a video called reignite your passion. This lady was talking about how she loves to paint and draw and how that is therapy for her.

Well, I’m certainly no artist although several of my kids are. I can’t play an instrument, although I’d love to.

So it wasn’t too hard for me to come up with what I do love and am passionate about.

Houses. I love putting rooms together. I think that’s why I love thrift stores because I can find affordable things for my house. I love organizing and decluttering. Even cleaning and putting a room back together is enjoyable to a certain extent. The transformation makes me feel like all is well with the world. I definitely am getting the endorphins flowing when the house comes together.

My only problem is there’s not enough space for all the things I’d like to do, so I’m having to decide what I really like the most and do that. I would like to hang more family photos so I am hoping to have a gallery wall in my hallway. And maybe pop in a picture here or there of what makes life sweet – the people we love.

I love looking through decorating books and magazines, watching YouTube decorating and home tour videos, especially small space because I can glean ideas and solutions on how to make small work.

I think home should be a reflection of you. It should tell your story. It should remind you of the people you love and the things you’ve done and are doing. It should be a place of warmth and love and peace.

It should also function well. So one of my goals in this small mobile home is to get the most I can out of the space. Yes, our table is too big. Two sides are moved against a wall and post so are unusable, but the table is an antique and family heirloom and is meaningful and beautiful. It serves it’s purpose and works for us because there are only three of us that live here now. It can be pulled out to accommodate more people if we need it to. Having the bigger table provides extra meal prep space (since we have very little counter space) and a place for playing games. So although the table is technically too big for the space, it adds lots of necessary functions and beauty to our home, so is worth the space it takes up.

It definitely is a challenge to get this place to work because it is so small and I have a lot of stuff. It is a matter of finding the right solutions for storage and downsizing a bit. But even though it can be frustrating, it’s also enjoyable. As much of life can be.

What are you passionate about? Do you enjoy your home?


You Matter at Home

They tried to replace people with robots at Walmart. Sending around that little box on wheels to do inventory and according to a worker there, they have tons of overstock sitting around. So the robot got the boot and maybe Walmart will realize people are important. Because of the bottom line, I’m sure the push to replace people will continue.

It seems society thinks that moms and homemakers aren’t important. That they can easily be replaced by stand ins and yes, if that stand in is your mother or family member, then that keeps that love flowing. But if it’s just a random person doing a job, that’s exactly what it is. Sometimes they are a loving person, but no one can love your child like you do.

Then after working all day, there’s not a lot left to give. But the dishes and laundry and housekeeping never go away. It’s still up to you to get it all done. So basically two fulltime jobs stuffed into one. I’m not saying this is for everyone. Some need to work or should for various reasons. And that’s ok. My point is is that people realize there is work at home that is important. Mamas taking care of their babies is important. Healthy dinners on the table is important. People’s mental health is important.

You matter at home.


Spring Second-hand Shopping List

At the beginning of the year, I wrote a Second-hand Shopping List here on the blog. I think it’s time for a little update and new list.

I haven’t found any Christmas stuff. Maybe the stores are saving it until Christmas but I’m still keeping my eye out.

I have been able to find some sweet dishes to include with my regular dishes and now they have their own cupboard. It’s fun, we use them for toast and snacks a lot. I am using my pink cups (I already had). I’m so drawn to the old pastels! And what’s even more funny is that, until recently, I had no idea how happy actually using them makes me!

Another thing I’ve been able to find are some table linens – napkins, placemats and runners. So that’s a nice start to getting a more well-rounded table stash.

I still haven’t found any copper, candlesticks and an ottoman or pouf. So those will go back on the list.

Shopping List

  • copper for the kitchen
  • black or brass-ish candle holders (possibly others)
  • yes a pouf or ottoman or even small table
  • more pastel dishes!!!!
  • nice picture frames for a wall or two I want to hand family photos on
  • still more table linens (napkins, placemats, etc.)
  • throw pillows, pillow covers or fabric for pillows
  • things for the yard
  • nice large jars for storage
  • up to date decorating books
  • spring tops
  • stuff I don’t even know I need!

Thanks for reading. What’s on your list?


What Irks Me About Decluttering

Don’t get me wrong…I kind of love decluttering. I love getting rid of some of that stuff clogging up my small space. Stuff like plastic things and an extra baking dish I already have too many of.

But what irks me about decluttering is…the advice that so many out there give out about throwing out your stuff. Oh great-grandmother’s china taking up space? THROW IT OUT! Oh sweet artwork your kids made when they were little? THROW IT OUT! The vase your mother loved but doesn’t fit your current style? THROW IT OUT!

Some things are worth keeping. Don’t throw away your memories. Don’t throw away the ties you have to your past and heritage. Should you hoard housefuls? Probably not but please, there’s more to life than just decorating your house with whatever you find in the stores. Your house should reflect you and your family. It’s good to honor your lost loved ones with physical items that meant something to them or that you have special memories attached to. It’s ok to save kids’ artwork in a box. One day those kiddos will be grown and gone and those scraggly little construction paper flowers will be all that’s left of those sweet memories.

Don’t get rid of things that are irreplaceable. And if it’s something that you truly don’t want ask others in the family if they’d like to have Great-Aunt Gertrude’s flower bonnet.

Until next time – do something wonderful at home!


One Way to Motivate Yourself to Clean

I’ve been working a lot around the house lately. Getting things decluttered and more organized so today, I just have to pick up. I am planning to do everything in an hour or less. Setting that old timer. Make the bed, pick up the rooms, do the dishes. Upkeep kind of stuff. And when I finish, if there’s anything left in me energy-wise, I am going to try to work on my flowerbeds and yard.

The flowerbeds are my reward.

Homemaking is often a thankless job. Giving yourself a reward is good motivation to clean. It always works for me.

How do you motivate yourself?

decorating · thrift finds

Budget Spring Table

Most of the things on my table have been thrifted. You don’t need a lot of money to set a pretty table for spring or Easter. Not only was it “cheep cheep cheep” but a whole lot of fun and free therapy as well! Now you can’t beat that.

This table was my husband’s great-grandmother’s table. We recently decided to bring it here and use it. Although it’s probably a little too big for our house, I love the old wood and history behind it. All the plates were second-hand. I had the white ones for years and the small blue plates were found a few weeks ago. Only 12 cents. I thought they were unusual and sweet being blue. They aren’t old but they are English. Which somehow in my mind matters…haha. The placemats came in at a whopping 50 cents apiece as well as the glasses. The napkins and our little bunny friend are also used. I think he was a dollar. I had the vase and the flowers were from the dollar tree. Oh yes and let’s not forget our cracked egg candles for a quarter!

So I think everything on the table cost $9.88!

It’s simple and sweet and makes me happy to look at. Are you decorating for spring? What have you thrifted lately that makes you happy?

“For as the soil makes the sprout come up and a garden causes seeds to grow, so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations. Isaiah 61:11


Spring is in the Air!

Spring is in the air! One day I accidentally did some spring cleaning in the kitchen. All I wanted to do was clear off surfaces and change a couple things around in the cupboards to make more sense. Whew a couple hours later and most of the kitchen had been decluttered, rearranged and cleaned. Things flow better now and that really helps with the dietary changes we’ve been making lately which includes reinventing the wheel at every meal basically.

Decided to use these jars for storage that I had laying around the house. Spray painted the lids black. I will probably keep my eye out for some better ones at the second-hand stores.
Found a nice spot for these pretty plates. We use them a lot for snacks and things. Life’s too short for just one set of white plates!
Cleared off the fridge and used a basket for keeping the tea.
Worked on the porch yesterday…this is just the first layer. We need plants and a few other things. Will post when it’s finished.

There’s so much more to do, but I’m glad I tackled the kitchen first! Are you spring-cleaning/organizing/sprucing things up?

I don’t know what it’s like where you live, but here in California, spring is in full swing! It’s the time for new beginnings and fresh starts, for airing things out and washing things bright and clean, for dusting out the dreariness along with the webs and becoming enchanted by the flowers and leaves as they pop from the earth and unfurl on the trees.


Almond Blossoms

The almonds trees are blooming.

My mother wanted to get married in an almond orchard while it was in bloom. I remembered that, yesterday, as we drove by one. She had a Gunny Sax dress. Quite folksy, really, but very pretty. I remember when I was a kid, I’d take it out and just look at it. It was soft pink and floral with long, gauzy sleeves and lace around the neck.

The wedding never happened. But still til this day and especially this year, the memory of that planned-for wedding, surrounded by almond blossoms, still lingers in the faraway corners of my memory.

Since my mother passed a few months ago, everything I see, that has any connection to mom, just stands out so much. And everything feels like some kind of memorial.

About a year before she passed away, she gave the dress to my daughter to sell on her shop. Thankfully, she didn’t sell it. Now we are so glad. I’d like to see it again.

Maybe one day, in heaven, we will walk through orchards of almond blossoms and remember these days on earth.

Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

Revelation 19:7-8


Dishwashers are a Girl’s Best Friend!

Hello friends. I am embarrassed because my blog is having a mid-life crisis. By vote from my girls, this is the new name.

Whoever said diamonds are a girl’s best friend just may have gotten it wrong.

Since we’ve moved here over a year and a half ago, I’ve been struggling to keep the dishes up. No dishwasher. So there were always dishes…always. Dirty – clean, always dishes in the sink and on the counter. I felt like I couldn’t catch up with them and was doing them constantly.

Well, a few weeks ago, my hubby drug this thing home for me – a countertop dishwasher! It’s half the size of a regular one but oh man does it ever work good! I didn’t even know these things existed. These tiny dishwashers! It has just made all the difference. There’d never be a way to have one installed under our counter, because we barely have any cabinets and I wouldn’t be able to part with the space. So luckily the counter it sits on is in the corner and basically useless space anyway.

I once worked for an elderly woman who daydreamt, as a girl, of a contraption that would do dishes because she was in charge of the dishes for her family of eight! She got her wish and was super excited when the first ones went onto the market.

So yes, dishwashers are a girl’s best friend.

Thank you, God, for “modern” conveniences that make our lives easier! How do you feel about your dishes/dishwasher?