Browsing "Organizing"
Feb 12, 2013 -

A Bump On the Head

I think we all have projects on our lists that we tend to forget about until it would have been great to have them done, but it’s now not the right time to do them.

One such project for me was to get the hand cream and soap off of the vanity counter. It’s been four and a half years and at every departure I put the damn bottles in the sink and bemoan my not having taken the time to come up with a better storage system for them. Four and a half years! I know, I’m a moron!

I opened an overhead cabinet in the study this morning that I apparently haven’t opened in a while because the contents had shifted. I was promptly hit over the head with a wire door organizer. Gah, why do I even still have that thing?! It’s always falling on my head! I had bought a three-pack, but ended up only using two in the kitchen.

Waitaminute… I really am a moron. How many times have I moved that organizer and kicked myself for not just donating it already? Not nearly as many times as I have kicked myself for not securing the stuff on the vanity, but a lot. And the solution was to merge the two annoyances, like so:


As for the bowl and cup on the counter, I’m just about out of water on the on board tank, so I keep the bowl filled from a large jug I replenish in the beach’s public bathroom and then use the cup as a dipper.

Yes, I could probably pull out and find water somewhere, but why bother? The only reason to have running water in my opinion is to have hot running water. I have a 10-gallon water heater and am not taking showers, so heating that much water would be stupid. Ergo the bowl. For doing the dishes, I have a large pot that I can fill with water and heat on the stove.

It’s no hardship and it actually makes it easier for me to be conservative with my water use as I know exactly how much I’m using in a day, which is about a gallon (4L). I could surely reduce that more, but I like to have really clean dishes, so no just washing them in a cup of water when I can haul all the water I want.

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Boondocking/Dry camping, Homemaking, Organizing, Personal, Plumbing, Technical, Travel    5 Comments
Jan 20, 2013 -

A Meltdown in the Toilet Room

I think we can all appreciate how much time we spend on the toilet.

In my rig, the toilet has its own room with a nice heavy door that makes the room forgettable. It’s so easy to just toss stuff in there and forget it until you actually need to use the room for the purpose for which it is intended. And then, you go, “Oh, no!” as you realise you have to move X, Y, and Z out of the way to use the toilet.

This morning, I swore that the broom was never going to attack me again and that I was going to spend the time needed this afternoon to tame the most necessary and most poorly used room in my home.

I completely emptied the room, then washed it all down, from the ceiling to the floor. Then, I actually got the paint out (not surprised that I had tons left, but surprised that it was still good!) and did a ton of touch ups. No more staring at depressing white spots or scratches while doing my business!

Then, it was time to evaluate what I was storing in there and, to my surprise, I was able to determine that everything that was in there belonged in there or, rather, had no better place to be stored. It was just a matter of reorganizing a little.

End result:

toilet room

This picture really makes me regret not taking two seconds to take a before picture because you would not believe I had the same amount of stuff in here, the room was so crowded and barely usable!

I went through my hardware bin to use up odd bits and found everything I needed to secure everything. A curtain rod hook was perfect to hang the broom:


And another curtain rod hook was the perfect solution to hold the floor piece of the filing cabinet securer:


And finally, an eye hook and a zip tie are holding up the vacuum:


I have no illusions that that will hold for travel, so I’ll have to take the vacuum down for now, but I have an idea of how I can use snaps and elastic in junction with this set up to really make the vacuum secure. I just don’t have time to sew today.

The floor now only has a garbage can and two big containers (one of carpet cleaning solution and one of stain remover for topping up a spray bottle) that fit perfectly behind the toilet.

When I was cleaning out the top shelf, I found some pictures I had completely forgotten about! They are from my trip to Maine. I found some little screws and hung up on the blank side of the room. I went for the random layout approach and it didn’t come out as nicely as I would have liked, but it’s nice to have them out:


I’ve bought all the supplies I need to continue touching up the paint all around the rig, so I guess today was the kickoff of spring spruce up. What, it’s only late-January? Well, it’s very springlike around here these days!

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Cleaning, Homemaking, Organizing, Personal    No Comments
Dec 30, 2012 -

Wretched Housekeeping

It’s a beautiful Sunday here in Hampton Roads, but yesterday it was pouring rain! It was perfect weather for a movie, but I was reminded that going to a movie on a rainy Saturday is not the best idea. Boy was the theatre packed!

I saw Les misérables, the depressing nature of which was also perfect for the weather conditions.

Most of the reviews of the movie compare it to the musical, which I have not seen. But I have read the novel straight through at least three times and frequently find myself rereading favourite parts. It’s one of those iconic books of a reader’s life, one whose first reading is remembered forever.

So I went in with fairly low expectations but high hope. And except for a few quibbles (like using the Thénardiers as comic relief), I felt this was one of the better adaptations I’ve seen. It got the mood right, most of the cast was perfect (Fantine, Cosette (child and adult), and Marius especially looked exactly as I have always envisioned them). And not a single one of my favourite scenes from the book was missing.

So while I wasn’t crazy about the musical style and every scene with the Thénardiers, visually this movie was a feast for a fan of Victor Hugo’s classic work. I look forward to seeing it again on DVD.

Today’s project was to rearrange the front room. I am tired of cleaning up the cat litter area every night only to step on filthy clumps in the morning because Neelix decided to have a party overnight. So reversed the layout of the room.

I’m not crazy about having the chair crammed in like that, but I’ll try it for a bit. Another thing I’m considering is getting a top-entrance litter box. I will miss my Omega Paw so much, but the cleaning is really getting on my nerves. What’s nice about this layout is that you don’t see the box first thing when you come in the door and I have room for my shoes, but the room feels more crammed and unbalanced at first glance.

I really need to do something with that styrofoam and get some colour on the back wall. I think I will stain it.

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Cleaning, Decorating, Homemaking, Organizing, Personal    1 Comment