Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The heat is on....

The heat is on....summer will soon officially be here. After a long winter of lots of snow and rain and making small talk with elevator and door men, co-workers and close friends. Now it is supposed to be 91 degrees and people are saying how it's too hot.

What's the deal? Is it just small talk? Will we ever be happy with the weather. Me...I'm a warm weather person. I will take the heat and humidity any day over snow and cold rain. I recently traveled with Husband to the winter Olympics. Before you say anything, yes I know the winter Olympics are supposed to be cold. Everyone told me how mild Vancouver is and how lucky we are to be going to such a mild temperature location for the Olympics. I was cold, every day, bone cold. I could not warm up at all the entire time I was there. After day two I said to Husband that I think I am a summer Olympic type of person.

I went to college in a warm climate, I love to vacation in a warm climate any time of year and I enjoy New York City in the warm months.

So now begins the small talk of "did you turn your AC on yet?" "hot enough for you" and "stay cool". I have converted Husband to the dark side, there is no AC in our apartment, not in our bedroom, not in our living. We have two tower fans that cool the apartment down just fine, keeps the air moving.

There is something not normal to me when you have to sit inside in a fleece sweater in the middle of June after complaining how cold of a winter it has been!

Monday, May 24, 2010

my shredder is on the fritz....

Yes I know tragic for a professional organizer and Husband who likes destroying personal information in the shredder that is no longer of use. What are we to do?

Shredder was a gift to Husband from his siblings a few years ago. As far as I knew, Shredder remained unopened in box throughout our courtship and engagement. Shredder made a debut in March 2009 soon after our nuptials.

Needless to say, we are both serious shredders. The box says good for 10 pieces of paper at one time and has a separate slot for CD's and credit cards. The most be put in at a time I would guesstimate is maybe 4 or 5 papers.

Granted since Spatial Relations Consultants has taken off, I have used Shredder more aggressively in the past 6 months. Last night Husband could barely shredder one piece of paper before Shredder shorted or over heated.

I used to think my original shredder was the way to go. What was my original shredder you ask? The old fashion tear-up with my right and left hand.

So now we're in the market for Shredder 2.0. Curious for recommendations....

Below is a link to an interesting blog from the NY Times about what is important to shred, check it out
Financial Tuneup: What You Need to Shred

Monday, May 17, 2010

shopping lists

My shopping lists have shopping lists which have shopping list. I try to go through my bag at the end of the day so first thing in the morning I am not lugging my stuff around. Most nights I get to it but I have found in the last two weeks no matter how many times I empty my bag of lists there are always more!!!

I got fed up today. I am now that person you may have seen in the supermarket with a pen crossing things off my list after I pick up each item or maybe that person you've seen talking to themselves (me trying to count how many eggs I am going to need and how many dozens to buy). I try to limit the trips to the supermarket to two times. Once for the mega pick up and the second for the last minute additions/specialty items.

And the past two weeks I have left the secondary trip to the very last minute and had to buy the extra items at the bodega on the corner where I can't leave with out spending AT LEAST $20. I know it's a price for convenience but come on!

As an organized person I make my shopping list when I am making my menus/looking at cookbooks. But why is it getting out of control? I thinking I am trying to get into my groove of what we call in our family "the tried and true menu"*

*definition=can make the item with your eyes closed and/or have the items in stock on a regular basis in the pantry/fridge; the classics; oldies and goodies.

Here's to the next shopping list being once trip!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

What constitutes a housewife?

I am mildly embarrassed to admit I enjoy watching Bravo's Real Housewives series. I admit I am probably dumber for watching it and have been watching it secretly for seasons. But I need to know, as I am watching The Real Housewives of New York, what constitutes a housewife? I thought it was someone who has kids, a family, something along those lines. I see there are two woman on this show who are not married or divorced without kids, how is that a housewife, I thought that was just being single and living life?? Even the woman on the show who are divorced with kids the show does not depict the women doing housewife things like helping your kids with homework, juggling plans with kids and play dates with work and life and even charity events?

Someone please explain this to me, please!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The t-shirt quilt has arrived!

Yeah the quilt has arrived and we have two happy campers!! Anyone need a place to archive t-shirts, check these guys out. If you want to see ours let me know, it's AWESOME!

Use it or lose it?

I was looking in our bathroom yesterday and looking at the decorative soaps, face masks, body scrubs, bath salts, and sample shampoos. Between you and me, I also have a bottle of Dove conditioner from over two years ago that had survived my last move, which I probably had a year before that. Why did I take it with me??

I had a revelation last night I am going to use it up, all of it. I am not buying anymore products until I am finished up with what I have. done. Do you think conditioner's expire??

Then this got me thinking what are the things in our linen closet, medicine chest and emergency kit (yes I made one years ago) that might have expired. So I did a purge. What use is expired sun screen? I struggle with the question "am I being wasteful" so this I think is my solution, toss the things that are expired, vitamins, cold medicine, sun screen and will use up the shampoos and soaps before I buy more. I think it might be good to take inventor every now and again....my kitchen pantry is next.....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

How much idling is too much?

I am sitting in Aroma cafe right now on SoHo, go ahead say it as Husband would say "who has it tougher than me" to be sitting at a coffee shop in the middle of a work day. If you must know I am in-between appointments. So I paid for my coffee, first one of the day and it's already 11:30am, and they give me a log-in slip for the intra-web for 30 minutes. I felt like they are telling me 30 minutes and that's it. They said "no you can buy a cookie or something and get another 30 minutes".

This got me thinking, how much is too much idling? I know people who use Starbucks as their living room, entire afternoons, evenings, for interviews, dates. I was at another coffee place on Friday, I was doing research and using the web, and there was this woman there conducting interviews. Ever 70 minutes a new candidate showed up. It seemed to be for some tutoring programing. I was thinking by the 4th candidate, does this interviewer get a cut from the coffee shop? Each candidate came to the table with a cup of coffee, she was improving their daily sales.

I use coffee shops as my off-site office. I can work from home, which is what I do sometimes but it is very distracting. They are doing construction outside our apartment so there is a lot of drilling and jack hammering going on, which is difficult on phone conversations. Coffee shops or library's help me focus and do make me feel more professional and productive.

How long is the longest you've idled at a coffee shop?

Monday, May 10, 2010

A closet full of memories Part I

A friend sent me this article knowing how much I would appreciate it. Thought I'd pay it forward....

The Miami Herald
Posted on Fri, May. 07, 2010
A closet full of memories

Washington Post Service
Houses start out as buildings, brick and mortar.

But at some point, if a house is any good at all, it ceases to be just a house.

Like a blood oath sworn by childhood friends, mortar mingles with memory and a home is forged. Paint color ceases to just be a hue and instead becomes the memory of the argument over the perfect shade of peach. The ragged chair in the den corner becomes the spot where on one winter afternoon a father and his two infant sons fell into a blissful, synchronized sleep. And a closet becomes, if not a place inhabited by skeletons, then one inhabited by ghosts.

Closets are odd creatures. Watch any house-buying show on HGTV, and you'll hear the ``closet conversation.'' In starter homes, newlywed husbands tease their brides that all their clothes will never fit in that closet. When the homebuyers are upscale, the closets can boast more square footage than some Manhattan apartments.

But talk to any adult child who has packed up a parent's closet after a move to an assisted living facility or a death, and you know why these small, painfully intimate spaces are the stuff of metaphor. Closets, like our lives, can be messy.

For almost exactly three years after my husband died, I left our closet untouched. There were a host of easy rationalizations. I didn't need the space. His clothes weren't bothering me; why should they bother anyone else? There were also loftier justifications. The week after he died, a dear friend offered to come over and help me go through the closet. It seemed as ludicrous to me as when the funeral director suggested that he take Bill's glasses and donate them to the Lion's Club. ``But he needs his things,'' I wanted to scream.

I would come to refer to this as my Joan Didion moment. As she recounts in her memoir The Year of Magical Thinking, she refused to give husband John Gregory Dunne's loafers away because if he came back, he would need his shoes. (There is solace, when you have lost your mind, in at least knowing that you are in such good company.)

Besides, I didn't want to do anything rash. A friend who had also lost her husband confided that she cleaned out his things very soon after his death and regretted it. In her haste, she had discarded items she wished she had saved for their daughters. Well, there, I told myself. I certainly wasn't going to be hasty. So the closet remained frozen in time.

But this winter, I decided to have our bedroom painted and carpeted. I also redecorated the largely unused sitting room adjacent to the master as a retreat for reading. But this renovation project was tackled far more out of a sense of old-fashioned necessity than any quixotic crossing of an emotional threshold.

The room turned out more beautifully than I could have imagined, with walls the color of ocean foam and carpet the color of white sand beaches and seagrass. But the master closet remained cluttered, and now, annoyingly, was out of touch with the rest of the room.

This was as much a factor of my clothes taking up too much space as it was the presence of his. So when I set out to tackle the closet on a recent Saturday afternoon, I was really only going to weed out the never-going-to-wear-again items on my half of the closet. Except that I knew the time had come.

I did not set out to displace the flannels, the polos and the khakis. I did not intend to move the Oxford shirts so heavily starched that one could imagine them as cadets standing at attention. Instead, I found my arms moving them without much intervention from my brain. There were moments that brought me back to reality. The tie with an uncharacteristic coffee stain on it was a silent testament to the moment when normalcy stopped and weekly trips to the dry cleaner were replaced by weekly trips to the oncologist.

Ultimately, I gave away far more of my clothes than his. Most of his simply got moved into another, out of sight, little-used closet. There are two 14-year-old boys who could wear those ties, I told myself. And it may be that a handful of the ties and a suit coat will get passed on. Progress is progress, no matter how small.

The master closet now sports my fall and winter clothes on one side; my spring and summer wardrobe on the other. My new closet, without his clothes, like my new life without him, is less full. But there is an order and sense of purpose to it that offers solace. I understand now, three years in, that just because his clothes are no longer in our closet doesn't mean his spirit is no longer in our home.

© 2010 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/05/07/v-print/1617741/a-closet-full-of-memories.html#ixzz0nXoMuUo6

how many layers is enough?

Yesterday Husband and I went to a baseball game. Knowing it was windy and going to be in the 50's here in NY, I prepared myself with layers. First a long sleeve heavy shirt, then a heavy zip-up sweatshirt, and then a sleeveless vest. I wore jeans and sneakers with socks*.

Let's just say, no matter what I would have worn would have kept me warm. Friends were there, in leggings, fleece blankets, mittens, hats and they were shivering as well. How many layers is enough?

We had a brilliant idea of getting hot coco to help us stay warm. I did have the thought that by the time Husband got back from so kindly bringing us the hot coco it might not be warm....I was right, it did nothing at keeping us warm. Though it tasted good, thanks Husband.

We left after the 5th inning, the shivering was too much and the team was losing (and later lost the game). But it was still fun to hang with Friends, though much nicer indoors or when it is supposed to be warm in May at baseball games.

For all I know I could have been at a hockey game it was so cold!

*I don't normally wear socks, year round, I just don't like to wear them so it is a rare occasion** that I do wear them.
** I do wear socks when I run for exercise.

Friday, May 7, 2010

My not so new sewing machine

About two years ago I set out to buy my first sewing machine. I took sewing xx years ago in Home Eco and remember making a nice pillow and remembering how to wind the bobbin.

So off to Target.com I went to research which machine to buy. One week later it arrived, I wound the bobbin and ready to make my home eco projects of the 21st century.

Needless to say, it's been two years since I attempted my projects. I needed my mom's assitance to get me started and that worked for a day. Then my good friend who is a sewing master came over to get me started and that worked for a day. I was about to be fess up and face defeat with my ability to craft projects. Husband was getting good material at watching our sewing machine sit idle in our apartment for, now years, and when friends would come over and say "oh you sew", Husband held back is laughter and comments as I replied, "I am relearning."

Well last night I got my sew on, all by myself! I fixed the problem with my bobbin, again, and practiced on a paper towel, as advised by my Sewing Master, and have now moved onto my practice fabrics. yeah!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

the closet bar fell last night..

Crawling into bed last night, I commented, as Husband was picking out his clothes for the next day, that the clothes rod in the closet looked like it was sagging. Not 5 minutes later did we hear a loud thud.

Cautiously I opened the closet door and just has I had anticipated, as did it happen 6 months ago, the bar fell. at 11:30pm what can we do. Deciding not to deal with it in the morning and take all of the clothes out and place them on the bed until the Super could do his awesome work and fix the rod.

Button downs, polo's, windbreakers, fleece zip ups, pants, suits, winter coats and my dresses that don't fit in my closet were sprawled all over the apartment. Clothes, clothes everywhere! Super, who us really SUPER, came quickly and reinforced the rod, swept and mopped up the drill remnants and was on his way.

Now all I had to do was wait until Husband came home form work and hope he'd be in the mood to put everything back, the way he likes it. (deep down I was hoping he'd feel the urge to purge some of his old polo's and pants, which did NOT happen).

There were I few, "oh I was wandering where this shirt went". And then he said, as he was holding up a fleece zip-up, "I saw someone wearing something like this today and thought to myself how nice it was." Me laughing on the inside that he already owns it...

Looking forward to expanding our closet size one day so we can see all that we have not just what's in front of us.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Organizers are not just for celebrities...

Merging styles for newlyweds is not just for real people. It seems to be for reality stars too. In the article below, courtesy of E!.com, shows the struggle reality stars Giuliana and Bill have combining their style. Watching the frustration between this couple trying to live in their space and represent both of their styles yet keep their individuality is quiet normal.

This is where the benefit of bringing in a third party, professional organizer/social worker comes in. Having someone come and listen and understand both of your needs will decrease the frustration level and increase the productivity and functionality of the space so you will both enjoy your home, together.

Giuliana & Bill Organize Their Chicago Pad & Prepare for Baby

March 1st, 2010 4:59 pm / Author: Gena Oppenheim

Bill <span class=Rancic and Giuliana Rancic Mar. 1" width="225">In case you missed last night’s episode of Giuliana & Bill, OK!’s got you covered. While Giuliana and Bill Rancic are still waiting to hear if they are pregnant, the couple try to take their mind off of the situation by hiring a professional organizer in their Chicago home.

“I want Giuliana to feel at home in Chicago so I decided to give her a gift of a professional organizer so she can have her own space,” Bill said, as he attempts to merge the couple’s lives together.

But being used to living apart most of time with Giuliana based in L.A., Bill feels a little threatened by his wife taking over the spare bedroom for an office space.

“Maybe this organizer wasn’t such a good idea. It’s getting a little out of hand to be honest,” Bill laments after the organizing gets under way.

And while Giuliana admits that, “It’s not so much about making this place organized, but I haven’t made it my home yet,” the E! News host has a few issues with Bill’s living style.

“Bill is a total neat freak. Its actually borderline annoying. To me it feels like he is the prison guard sometimes,” Giuliana reveals of her husband’s idiosyncrasies.

Luckily, once Giuliana sets up her work equipment in the spare bedroom, both sides calm down and focus on getting pregnant.

“We just did IUI, intrauterine insemination, and we are waiting for the results. We are really excited that this could work, that we are going to be pregnant and we are going to be parents,” Giuliana gushes of her impending motherhood.

Tune in to Giuliana & Bill next Sunday at 9 p.m. on the Style Network to find out Giuliana’s pregnancy results!