May, 2011

Bouncing Back After a Long Weekend

posted by Andrea | 05/31/2011 | 3 comments

source I often find that after a long, Holiday weekend away from my “regular routine”, it’s more difficult for me to buckle down and get back on track. Can you relate? Dave and I got SO much accomplished this weekend and crossed a bunch of things off our very long to-do lists. However, this morning, I just wanted to keep painting and working on different house projects because that’s way more fun than my normal routine! It’s so easy to […]

Our Memorial Day Weekend

posted by Andrea | 05/30/2011 | 5 comments

Happy Memorial Day! I don’t have any fun porch decorations or hanging baskets yet, but our house still looks very patriotic due to the flags…don’t you think? Oh how I love four-day weekends — especially when my “House and Yard Project” to-do list is spiraling out of control and getting longer by the day! Here’s just a small portion of our list: Change oil in lawn tractor Take blades off tractor and sharpen them Mow and edge lawn Spray Round […]

Simple Peanut Butter Cookie Bars

posted by Andrea | 05/28/2011 | 2 comments

I love fresh-from-the-oven cookies, but I don’t always love the time it takes to scoop out every individual cookie and then wait in the kitchen while the first tray bakes, then quickly swap the first tray for the second tray, move the first try to the cooling rack, scoop more cookie dough onto the next tray, pull the second tray out of the oven, etc. etc. It’s kind of a process — and some days, I just don’t have the patients to […]

Having a Baby on a Budget

posted by Andrea | 05/27/2011 | 23 comments

source: Ever since I announced our “big news” a few weeks ago, I’ve been overwhelmed {in a good way} with comments, emails, facebook messages, tweets, snail mail, and even in-person advice as to what I should do, what I shouldn’t do, what I’ll definitely need, books to read, etc. etc. And for the most part, it’s ALL excellent advice and I’m learning so much — without even reading any books yet 🙂 However, something that really surprised me is that […]

Clutter Control and Summer Vacation

posted by Andrea | 05/25/2011 | comment

It’s the last week of May — which means school is ALMOST finished and summer break is ALMOST here. And that means you will be in charge of entertaining, occupying, and cleaning up after your children every. single. day. for the rest of the summer! You can do it! I have a bunch of really fun posts coming up over the next few weeks — talking about fun {and free} summer activities, how to get your kids involved in organizing, […]

Simple Tips to Start Meal Planning

posted by Andrea | 05/24/2011 | 1 comment

I hear women talking, or even posting on Facebook, about the fact that it is 4:30 PM and they probably should figure out what to do for dinner. Of course by that time, they generally realize it’s really too late to actually make a decent meal. And after rummaging through their pantries, they realize it is just impossible to make a dinner with what they have on hand. I personally did this often in the beginning of my married life, […]

Cleaning With Lemons

posted by Andrea | 05/23/2011 | 4 comments

I’ve always loved lemons…always! I love baking with lemons, I love decorating with lemons, I love the bright cheery color of lemons, I love the smell of lemons, I love lemonade, AND I love cleaning with lemons! No, I’m not just talking about lemon Pledge — although that is a delicious smell that remind me of dusting my parent’s house every weekend! I’m talking about real, whole, lemon fruits. Recently, I’ve added lemons to my weekly grocery list and am using them […]

Blogging Conference, Organizing Bags, and a Baby Bump

posted by Andrea | 05/21/2011 | 17 comments

This weekend I’m attending and speaking at Gleek Retreat — a blogging conference right here in West Michigan — and I’m so excited for everything I’m going to learn and for all the amazing blogging friends I’ll FINALLY get to meet “in real life”. I’ll share more about the blogging conference next week, but I just wanted to show you the fun new organizing utility tote bag I got from my cousin {and it’s PERFECT for this conference}   Not only […]

5 Simple Spring Decorating Ideas

posted by Andrea | 05/20/2011 | 1 comment

Spring is here! Well, it’s actually been here for several weeks, but here in Michigan, it’s finally starting to FEEL like spring and I’m ready for that change! Everything is so fresh and new during spring months — and I want my house to feel the same way. However, I’m NOT willing to spend a bunch of time or money, so I’m always looking for quick, simple ways to achieve a new look on little to no budget 🙂 Here are a […]

Simple Alternatives to Sandwich Lunches

posted by Andrea | 05/19/2011 | 7 comments

It’s nearing the end of the school year, and I’m guessing you’re probably sick of packing lunches every. single. day. NEWS FLASH: I have a hunch your kids are sick of eating those boring lunches every. single. day. And if you pack a lunch for yourself — chances are you could use a few new ideas as well! If you’ve fallen into a boring lunch rut, here are a few very simple ways to mix things up a bit. 1. Leftovers Leftovers are […]

Giveaway: Clutter-Free Crafting with Silhouette SD

posted by Andrea | 05/17/2011 | 204 comments

This giveaway is now closed. Congrats to Kari (thestablers@…)!!! Out of 289 entries facebook comments and blog comments} you were randomly selected as the winner of the Silhouette SD! I’ll be in contact with you soon or you can email me with your shipping information. I’ve never been big into crafts — mainly because I can’t stand all the clutter they bring with them. Fortunately I’ve found ways to express my creativity without accumulating lots of “stuff”. For example, I […]

Huge Birthday Giveaway Celebration

posted by Andrea | 05/16/2011 | 13 comments

One month from today is my 26th birthday!! No, I’m not telling you this so you can send me cards, gifts, or well wishes. I’m telling you this because one month from now — during my birthday week — I’ll be giving away over $2000 worth of products to Simple Organized Living readers for my HUGE Birthday Giveaway Celebration! That’s right, I’ve partnered with 26 different companies to offer 26 different giveaways for my 26th birthday — and I thought it […]

Weekend Giveaway – Enjoy Lighting Flameless Candles

posted by Andrea | 05/14/2011 | 58 comments

This giveaway is now closed. Congrats to Wendy {wendypchef@…} — out of 86 entries {via blog comments and FB comments} she was chosen at random via the “And The Winner Is” WordPress Plugin. I will contact you shortly with the information I need to get you your candles! I absolutely LOVE decorating with candles, and even though I’m not doing much decorating these days, I’m already getting excited for when all our home renovations are complete and I can get […]

How to Find Oven Hot Spots

posted by Andrea | 05/13/2011 | 2 comments

Have you ever put something into the oven only to come back 30 minutes later and find that one section is completely burnt and another section is still not cooked through? When we moved into our current house a few months ago, our VERY old {but still functional} wall ovens were giving me all sorts of problems because there seemed to be specific “hot spots” so my food wasn’t cooking properly.   Then I saw an article in the Reader’s Digest […]

Time-Saving Wallpaper Removal Tip

posted by Andrea | 05/12/2011 | 9 comments

source: Over the past 5 years, I’ve had my fair share of experience removing wallpaper. So it’s probably safe to say I’ve tried just about every removal method out there…and am on the verge of being a “wallpaper removing expert”! In our first house, we {and when I say “we”, I really me “I”} removed wallpaper from the kitchen, dinning room, bathroom, laundry room, bedrooms, and even the garage! Thankfully in our new house, most of the rooms just had […]

The Best Mother’s Day Gift – Baby News!

posted by Andrea | 05/11/2011 | 67 comments

If you are a mom, what might be one of the best gifts you could get on Mother’s day? OK, obviously, there are 101 answers to that question, but I think for MY mom, the answer would be a grandchild. And guess what…this Mother’s Day, she got one! Well, she’ll have to wait until October because I’m only 16 weeks along, but she was still super excited — as was the rest of my family and Dave’s family. Want to […]

The 80/20 Rule – For Your Closet

posted by Andrea | 05/10/2011 | 19 comments

source: Have you ever heard of the 80/20 rule? If not, it basically implies that there is an imbalance between the amount of resources we use, and the amount we have. For example: It is often said that 80% of the wealth is held by only 20% of the population {or less} There’s a good chance that 80% of your phone calls, emails, or text messages go to only 20% of your contacts I know I often fall in a rut of […]

My New Favorite Cupcake Tool

posted by Andrea | 05/9/2011 | 1 comment

What do you get when you combine a store bought cake mix and store bought chocolate frosting with a few sprinkles and a “star” decorating tip?   A really quick and easy Mother’s Day dessert for my huge extended family cookout! I had high hopes of making the cupcakes and frosting from scratch. I had all the ingredients and I even found the recipes I wanted to use. But {there’s always a “but” isn’t there?} our weekend was just a little crazy […]