Friday, July 23, 2010

Getting Ready for a Summer Weekend

A lovely bouquet of freesia from Trader Joe's. It's now adorning my kitchen.

It's summertime! Give yourself time (and permission) to lounge about a bit, enjoying sunshine and warm weather.


  • Are you going out tonight? Lay out the outfit you plan to wear. Don't forget colorful, fun summery earrings and bracelets. Sandals, or espadrilles?

  • Set out a pitcher of sun tea so your family can enjoy it tonight and tomorrow.

  • Tidy the kitchen for the weekend: empty or fill dishwasher, scrub sink, wipe down counters, sweep floor if needed.

  • Whisk through the house, emptying wastebaskets, decluttering, putting away shoes (or having their proper owners do so themselves), watering houseplants, fluffing pillows, putting away magazines.

  • Vacuum the room that needs it the most.

  • Visit an ATM or gas station if you need to before the weekend starts.

TODAY'S PROJECT: Making My Home Prettier

Here in the Northwest, you can find yourself wanting to burn a cozy fire at night during a good 9 months of the year. Of course, nobody can afford to do that every night. But I like to have firewood and fire starters stocked up and ready to go just in case the mood strikes. So unfortunately, that's meant I've had this unattractive Duraflame box (or one like it) in my upstairs living room constantly for the past seven years. Ugh. Even in summertime, when I won't be burning any fires, because I've preferred not to drag my firewood supplies into the garage for 3 months.

I don't know what took me so long to get around to it, but today I bought an inexpensive $4.99 basket at Fred Meyer. My firestarters are now stacked in an attractive basket, and the ugly Duraflame box is now in the recycling bin. I try not to "buy things" to solve my household problems: decluttering should be my priority, not buying more items. In this case, however, I think an attractive little basket was the perfect solution, since I'm hardly going to declutter by burning up all my firestarters and then not buying any more.

Today I'm also replacing the curtains in my office. I've lived here for seven years, and I don't know how long the previous owner had the curtains before she generously left them for me. Despite my taking good care of them (laundering twice a year, Febrezing when needed), they're faded and covered in cat hair where Tyler paws at them to go sit in the window.

Yesterday while shopping at Ross, I finally found a set of new faux silk lined panels that I liked. They're chocolate with blue stripes, similar to these. $12 per panel, and I needed three. So for just $36 I have a whole new, clean, fresh look in my office. Instead of going out to dinner last night (I would have spent way more than $36) I stayed home, ate leftovers, put up my curtains, and played with my dogs.

LOVELY BLOGS: Betty in the Sky With a Suitcase

I travel often, so I find this flight attendant's blog fascinating. She posts podcasts you can listen to. Currently there are stories about misbehaving animals on flights, racial profiling, people peeing in the aisles, and tales of unruly passengers.

She's also published a book of humorous travel stories recently.


Stop Margarita Madness: Drink a Surly Temple (Chicago Tribune)

Summer's Fresh Bounty (LA Daily News)

Tofu Burgers (101 Cookbooks)

What Should I Do With This Summer Fruit? Freeze It (CHOW)

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