Tuesday, November 29, 2011

De-cluttering the Kitchen and Other Stuffs

Well, the turkey's been carved and most of its leftovers have been eaten. It was a great Thanksgiving around these parts. Conan's family and my family all came to our house and we sat around eating too much, talking too much and when it was all over, cleaning too much. I kid. I cleaned just enough to get by. So, the decorations are up now and here's a couple pics of them in all their bustin'-the-meter glory. What can I say, lights make me happy and I am lucky enough to have a husband who supports that.

We got both of the trees up and decorated. That white one back there is my pride and joy.

This year, we decided to decorate the shelves in all of their shelf-y glory. The garland was a black Friday sale that I stumbled across at Michael's. $1.99 for 9 feet. Top that. 

I got some new bows for the stairs this year since apparently tying real bows with silk ribbon is like the hardest thing that you can ever attempt. Ever. $2 each at Big Lots.

And here is my lovely, sparkly, slightly pink dining room tree. Bee-you-tea-full!

Okay so, once the stuffing subsided I was firmly situated in a holiday funk. Here we've got all of these friends dropping by from out of town and family coming by and my kitchen, the place where everyone inevitably ends up standing around, looks...shall we say...not so Martha.
Due to our bathroom remodel, the kitchen ceiling is just chillin' lookin' like this:

So yeah, I needed to do something to, as Conan put it, "Draw the eye downward."
So yesterday morning I decided to do something little, with a big impact. De-cluttering.
Bear in mind, these are the cabinets the house came with and we are nowhere near doing a full-blown kitchen remodel but there are some things that anyone can do to make things look good no matter what you're workin' with. So, here's what the cabinets looked like before:

Yeah. Basically the hottest of all messes. Three years of just kind of "putting stuff on the shelf" had not served me well. Lots of odds and ends glasses and mis-matchy stuff we didn't even use made everything look worse. So I simply removed everything and then began sorting.

- Things we use everday
- Things we use once a week
- Things we haven't used in a while (read: they had a nice coat of dust)

The dusty stuff went in a box bound for DAV land and the rest was then sorted into

- White dishes
- Other color dishes

The other color dishes went to the Island of Misfit Dishes (under the counter) and the white ones stayed topside. Then I just put things back using the quadrants my cabinets were already divided into. (Note, for a more organized look, keep things front and center, not in between the cabinet dividers)
Here's what I was left with:

With the exception of the cup hooks ($2 for three at Ace Hardware) and the new set of unbreakable tumblers on the right ($2.50 each at Wal-Mart) this was all stuff that I already had. Hanging the cups saved a lot of space as well as getting rid of a lot of the coffee cups we don't use. I mean, my husband is the only one who drinks coffee and he uses one cup per day. There was no reason to have all of those cups. That's what de-cluttering is all about folks. Be realistic. Now I realize that some people have just that...more people. And with more people in your house come more dishes but if you have once nice cabinet or curio, you can use some of these same ideas with it. Okay, so I mentioned earlier that I went to the DAV with all of those dusty dishes, right? Well guess what I got

That's right, another beat up Lane "Acclaim" table.

It's from the same line as our coffee table that I refinished a while back

But as you can see, the new table is much glossier since I didn't use a polyurethane finish on the coffee table, just good ol' Howard Feed N' Wax. Which, I think this picture was taken before I did. Dang. Oh well. Anywho, it has a couple of problems

But all in all, for $13.47 I'm pretty excited to have a nother place to set magazines and such. Now I just need to decide if it's worth refinishing or not. Thoughts?


  1. The after shot is definitely looking Martha-y. Though the Island of Misfit Dishes makes me sad; let them out and be used!

    Are there structural issues with the table? If they're just cosmetic, refinish!

    (Also, Mastermind is the bomb.)

  2. Oh, believe me you I kept the important stuff and I'm sure the Star Trek mug and the one lonely Salvation Army glass will still get used on special occasions ; ) If I have the time I might re-finish the table. After all, I didn't really show how I did the coffee table so this would be a good thing for the blog. And lol at the Mastermind reference! I'll have to tell our friend Lisa, she's the one that gave it to us!


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